Sonic Diet

Slackers, Relatives, Gorillaz and a Cow

Words by Dwellephant

We may not get health care, jobs, or hover-boards in 2010, but we are getting some pretty great new albums. Or at least they seem great based on what little’s been leaked out so far. And I have four of ’em to tell you about today. Most recent releases at the bottom…

The Slackers: The Great Rocksteady Swindle (April 20th)
(RIYL: Toots & The Maytals, The Beatles, The Skatalites)

Quite frankly, this is the most selfish thing I’ll ever write about, because I’m an enormous fan of these guys, and have been listening to them for almost as long as I’ve been listening to De La Soul.

On April 20th, after releasing a handful of albums on various other labels, The Slackers return to Epitaph’s kid sister imprint, Hell-cat Records. It’s their first album on Hell-cat since the underrated Peculiar, and the first to feature songs written by each member of the band.

Just like the Gorillaz, New York’s finest have put up an equally brief album sampler on YouTube right here.

Nas & Damian Marley: Distant Relatives (April 20th)
(RIYL: Um, well, Nas and Damian Marley, really)

One of the best MCs in this history of hip-hop teaming up with my favorite Marley kid? Sign me up.

I’d be willing to bet this collaboration started after Nas appeared on this (not FCC-friendly) track from Damian Marley’s stellar Welcome To Jam Rock (An album so good, I’ll forever buy everything Damian Marley releases.). And based on the various snippets I’ve heard while doing my daily blog rounds, I’m very excited. Especially for this song.

Not only because they sample Mulatu Astatke’s Yegelle Tezeta (introduced to American ears by Jim Jarmusch’s Broken Flowers), which also pops up on a track from Milwaukee’s own Dylan Thomas & Haz Solo’s All Jokes Aside, but also because of how seamlessly their voices blend together as they trade off vocals.

Gorillaz: Plastic Beach  (March 9th)

(RIYL: Gnarls Barkley, Kid Koala, cartoons, dancing)

I was under the impression the last Gorillaz record was the last Gorillaz record. But I won’t complain if they want to give me more music to listen to. Demon Days was, in my opinion, a perfect album. And while it’s hard to judge how next week’s release, Plastic Beach, will compare, you can get a two-minute taste of they synth-heavy songs thanks to this YouTube post.

That’s the official YouTube channel, too. So click around. Catch up on what you missed. Listen to the first single (“Stylo”) with Mos Def and Bobby Womack. Or check out the newest single (my favorite), “Superfast Jellyfish” feat. De La Soul and Gruff Rhys (from Super Furry Animals) here.
Micah Schnabel: When the Stage Lights Go Dim (March 9th)
(RIYL: Two Cow Garage, The WMSE/Muzzle of Bees podcast)

It’s not enough that Two Cow Garage is one of the better bands playing between our American coasts. Now frontman Micah Schnabel is getting an official release for his stripped-down and gorgeous solo album, thanks to Suburban Home Records.

You can hear the entire thing in the streaming player featured here. And if you like it, pre-order it. There are a handful of options– and bonus goodies– to choose from.

This entry was published on March 1, 2010 at 10:41 pm. It’s filed under General and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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