Songwriter, multi-instrumentals and producer Sam Cohen is back with his new solo album, The Future’s Still Ringing In My Ears, which he co-produced with his longtime friend veteran producer Brian “Danger Mouse” Burton. It’s a dream gig that pays off in spades for Cohen, who apparently felt uninspired for years on the solo front. With the support and push from Burton, Cohen finds his mojo on a collection of eleven songs drench in sounds of psychedelic rock with some really amazing synth landscapes. While the album focuses primarily on the madness of our modern world and what might be a bleak future, Cohen still finds those little moments to rally us forward.
I haven’t heard so many sad songs on one album in a long time. Thanks to Scottish singer Lewis Capaldi debut album Divinely Uninspired to a Hellish Extent, I’m feeling a little bummed out. On the subject of sad songs and his debut album, Capaldi recently said, “I don’t think it’s going to take much to make the UK to crumble at the moment. You know, I like making sad songs. I never set out to make an album full of ’em but it just transpired that way. When you’re sad, you think about it, you get into your feelings – you’re wallowing in it and overthinking it….” In short, Divinely Uninspired to a Hellish Extent is definitely an album for those who enjoy sad songs and the feeling of being moved.
I think maybe for the rest of the day it might be time to break out the tissues and down a few aspirin because my emotions are a little worse for wear, after being led down on a personal and emotive journey by Canadian singer songwriter Lucette, on her sophomore album Deluxe Hotel Room. Lauren Gillis aka Lucette effective shows off her versatility across nine songs and their sonic arrangements as she recalls her struggle with mental health, loneliness and pursuing a career as a musician. In short, I really enjoyed the pop-friendly direction Lucette has taken this new album, especially with the introduction of synth and electronic elements. It’s almost a world away from alt country feel of her debut Black Is The Color from five years ago.
Melbourne indie rocker Alex Lahey has often been compared to the early sound of Liz Phair with the sarcastic lyrical wit of Courtney Barnett. But if you ask Alex what she thinks about the comparisons, she’ll probably tell you that she hates labels. That said, there is no doubt that comparisons sometimes stick and for good reason, especially as she turns up the volume with her grungy guitars on her second The Best of Luck Club. Led by the singles Don’t Be So Hard On Yourself, Am I Doing It Right? and the achingly beautiful Unspoken History, the album, was co produced by Alex Lahey and Catherine Marks, who helped shape big albums for the likes of The Killers, Wolf Alice and Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes. The result is a concept album of 10 songs that was apparently influenced by the chance meetings and conversations in the dive bars of Nashville, where Lahey incidentally wrote most of her songs for this album. I know I haven’t ventured far from home again, but with an array of catchy guitar hooks, especially on the punk-pop infused Misery Guts, teamed with Lahey’s witty lyricism, this is arguably my pick for album of the week.
Talking about her debut album back in 1999, Kasey Chambers said, “I’d like to convert some people with this record. I think it has the potential to prove that country music has a lot more depth and soul…” Today, May 17th, marks exactly twenty years to the day since Kasey Chambers’ The Captain was released. In Australian music history, it became one of the most lauded debuts from an Australian musician across any genre, proving that she was right and the appeal she hoped the album would have. With the re-release of the Captain as a shiny new anniversary edition on CD and vinyl format, old and new fans alike can experience the warmth, heartache and sincerity of Chambers storytelling, set against a wildly ambitious blend of country rock, bluegrass, honky-tonk and gospel-tinged country music. Feeling somewhat nostalgic about Chambers re-release of The Captain, I’ve decided to break with tradition and feature here below, the original music video for the title track, instead of a new release. Enjoy!