Once I took a break from my constant rotation of John Talabot's record, it suddenly occurred to me what a great week this is for new releases. The return of a living legend, the latest from one of my favourite bands and fresh material from one of the most exciting punk bands around are just some of the reasons to be excited, while things are also looking rosy for the coming weeks, as evidenced by the taster track that I've included. It's started fairly slowly, but March looks certain to be the month in which 2012 finally kicks into gear.
There really is only one place to begin this week. I don't want to resort to proclaiming it the best since this or the best since that, but it truly is a long time since The Boss has sounded as vital as he does on Wrecking Ball. This is particularly true of the title track and 'Rocky Ground,' which are both genuine, bona fide song of the year contenders. Stream it here!
THE MAGNETIC FIELDS - Love At The Bottom Of The Sea
For all intents and purposes, this is your typical Magnetic Fields album. It's concise, inconsistent and at times even frustrating, but as with all of their records it holds a handful of precious gems which make the application completely worthwhile. 'Andrew In Drag' in particular is sublime. Stream it here!
This should provide plenty of solace for those disappointed by the new Ceremony record. Open Your Heart and Zoo perform the same trick, toning back the extremities in favour of a more tuneful approach, but whereas the latter delves in mediocrity, this fabulous throwback to punks golden era more than maintains the trio's upward momentum. Stream it here!
New album Sweet Heart Sweet Light is imminent, and judging by this first taster it could well be another Jason Pearce classic. Although clearly influenced his masterpiece, Ladies And Gentlemen We Are Floating In Space, this sprawling nine minute epic seemingly approaches things from a far more positive angle - no bad thing when the results are this good. Stream it here!