Bloomington, IN group Murder By Death unveiled its seventh album, Bitter Drink, Bitter Moon, this week on Bloodshot Records, and if you need an incentive to check it out here’s a moody album cut entitled “Lost River.” The track, a slowed-down folk number, showcases the group’s penchant for narrative-based songwriting that reflects lyrical drama with theatrical instrumentation. This one feels like it comes out of a bygone era, perhaps something leftover from the Old West.
Gorgeous, gauzy folk-pop intended to burst your heart on this CHAMPS premiere of “St. Peters.” As meditative and godly as its name, milk-dipped vocals, cathedral reverb and bare guitars may very well bring you to your knees or to the doorstep of the one that got away. Pastoral gems await, on Rough Trade today.
On their new Bend Beyond, Woods continues to clean-up their psychedelic act but still finds time for a few weirdo tangents that'll keep your head spinning. "Give Your Light Off" is the B-side to "Cali In A Cup," which is the first single from the new LP and a 7-inch in its own poppy right. This one has a fried back porch feeling that sits well with records like Animal Collective's Campfire Songs – naturalistic but still weird as hell. Everything discussed above is out now on Woodsist.
On "Appalachia," Chelsea Wolfe reignites the ghosts of American mountain music for a haunted folk spell. Her voice, commanding as ever, gets a sturdy backing with reckless guitar strums, subtle drum stomps, a steady bass and slithering string parts that add an aura of menace and cinema to the song. Her new one, Unknown Rooms: A Collection Of Acoustic Songs, will be out October 16 via Sargent House.
It's common to view people you're crushing on as a fantasy, as a ghost, as something shrouded and unattainable, which somehow makes them all the more perfect. On "Girl in The Fog," Levek gets at that mysterious, just-out-of-reach feeling with dreamy keys, layers of fingerpicking, string drones and the plea to step to "when you're feeling low." His debut LP, Look A Little Closer, is out September 25 via Lefse.
Beardo remix alert! Chamberlin, they of rootsy Cults-covering fame, are now unleashing one of their own; ”Thief,” an angelic march reminiscent of a brawnier Fleet Foxes. They’ve also announced a fall EP (featuring Patrick from My Morning Jacket on drums) and an adjoining rework contest. Think you can do better than Rubblebucket’s chiffon swirl, tinkling bell crescendo and a surprisingly heartfelt verse by frontwoman Kalmia? Have at it, hoss: the stems to make a version of your own are ready right here.
As our childhood obsession Beck gears-up to distribute his new LP through a batch of sheet music, he thankfully remains active on the recording front. Here, he pays tribute to Brazilian icon Caetano Veloso with a cover of "Michelangelo Antonioni," which is of course named after the ultra-cool Italian modernist director. It's part of a new compilation that pays tribute to Veloso, which also features contributions from Devendra Banhart, Os Mutantes' Sérgio Dias, Chrissie Hynde, Seu Jorge and more. It comes out in the UK on October 22 via Universal.
Floating Action, the musical moniker for musician Seth Kauffman, recently released an album on My Morning Jacket frontman Jim James’ label Removador Recordings & Solutions. The LP, Fake Blood, is the musician’s fifth album – a folk-tinged collection of rock numbers heralded by the single “Not What I Came For.” This version of the track is a redux from James himself, who has infused the song with a spaced-out, hypnotic sensibility.
Vaguely countrified and imbued with a vast spectrum of emotion, Angel Olsen can leave you cold and then break your heart all within a verse. "Tiniest Seed," a cut off her just-released Half Way Home, starts out in pleasant territory, but she's just setting you up for impending drama about imbalanced partners and how to embrace the smallness of individual humanity as a positive. Big issues, sure, but they're examined with such assured depth that it's clear this frequent Will Oldham-collaborator can stand on her own as a folk artist to follow.
Even though it's not part of the recent Just Tell Me That You Want Me: A Tribute To Fleetwood Mac, this Marissa Nadler cover of the legendary group's "Save Me A Place" is a gem unto itself. Filled with a simple, room-sound acoustic guitar and absolutely lovely harmonies, Nadler shows her Mac dedication by toeing the line between sadness and beauty.