The Flaming Lips - American Head
Back from space, the Lips deliver some of their most honest and mature work to date. Band leader Wayne Coyne sings retrospectively of his home and American roots in rural Oklahoma; where his brother crashed his bike, drugs dissolved his friends, and he was held at gunpoint at his fry cook job at Long John Silvers. The soundscape of American Head rings in with the midtempo feel and lush arrangements of some of their iconic works "The Soft Bulletin" and "Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots", yet again setting the bar for their forthcoming sound for the decade.
Favorite Track: Will You Return/When You Come Down
Tim Heidecker - Fear of Death
Comedian and star of the Tim and Eric show, Tim Heidecker, releases his 4th solo album with the help of Foxygen's Johnathan Rado, The Lemon Twigs, and Weyes Blood. A surprisingly catchy, well arranged album about the serious topic of death and being afraid to die. Light rocking acoustics and powerful vocals dominate the album with Heidecker further proving that he is a jack of all trades.
Favorite Track: Property
Oh Sees - Protean Threat
Band leader John Dwyer leads another classic Oh Sees release with the promise of two more this year. Truly one of the hardest working musicians in the world with 20 plus albums, running Castle Face Records, and a history of now stop touring. Heavy psych, garage rock, and kraut rock overtones are present with a vengeance, adding another layer and piece to the Oh Sees mystified realm.
Favorite Track: Said the Shovel
Cat Stevens - Tea for Tillerman 2
Cat Stevens revisits his landmark album 50 years later with rerecorded versions of his cult classic masterpiece. Songs like Wild World are almost unrecognizable as Stevens recreates some of his biggest hits, other songs ring in the sounding the same with Stevens voice just as good as the original. A wonderful, refreshing take on the normal album.
Favorite Track: Wild World
The Be Colony - Be II
Just down in Fort Wayne, Indiana lives psychedelic/jazz rock band, The Be Colony, a fresh, hip local band that finds energy through 60s and 70s grooves and reinvents them to their own to create a new sound. Creating the massive studio work of BE II, they follow the coattails of "BE" to a lush smooth indulgence of an album. The cover says it all with a burning organ representing the sound of the album in the best way possible. Follow the band at www.thebecolony.com
For fans of Pink Floyd, Steely Dan, and anything groovy!
Favorite Track: Free at Last
Conrad Shock and the Noise - Lackluster
Good music is never far from where you live, this is evident in John Schaak's psych rock band, "the Noise." A band that formed from Aquinas college delivers their 2nd release together with this heavy, riff driven EP, expanding on the sound of their 2018 band debut with a cassette release on Schaak's newly found tape label Culture.m4a. The title of the EP is defined on the front as "lacking in vitality, force, or conviction: uninspired or uninspiring", I can't disagree more with this. Follow the band at www.facebook.com/Conradshock/
For fans of Arctic Monkeys, The Strokes, and anything catchy!
Favorite track: Robot
Bill Callahan (Smog) - Gold Record
Idles - Ultra Mono
Deftones - ohms
Sufjan Stevens - The Ascension
Fleet Foxes - Shore
Neil Young - The Times EP
Archie & the One Hits - Self-titled debut
(GR/Chicago Local, archieandtheonehits.bandcamp.com)
Jamie Brackman - You Are the Light (Debut)
(GR Local, jamiebrackman.bandcamp.com)