LOLAWOLF is a new trio featuring the vocals of Zoe Kravitz, daughter of Lenny Kravitz and Lisa Bonet. She’s also well known for her acting roles in Divergent and X-Men: First Class. The Lolawolf EP was characterized by Pitchfork as “surging electronic pop” while Neon Gold called their track “Drive (Los Angeles)” “…a perfect piece of distinctive, melody-driven, back-to-the-future synth candy.” We think it sounds like Kesha and Banks on a trap binge!
Childhood friends turned collaborators Jack + Eliza take a stripped-down approach towards ‘60s psychedelia. Armed with just their vocals and electric guitars, they’ve teamed with producer Chris Zane (Passion Pit, Mumford & Sons) combining the harmonies of bands like The Beach Boys and The Mamas & The Papas with stripped-down contemporaries The xx and Father John Misty. Check out the duo’s catchy single “Hold The Line.”
James Farm is a collaborative effort between jazz saxophonist Joshua Redman, pianist Aaron Parks, bassist Matt Penman and drummer Eric Harland which the Evening Standard describes as, “Four crack musicians and improvisers whose fierce grooves and synergy make for spin-tingling listening.” Since making their debut at the 2009 Montreal Jazz Festival, they have received much praise for their live sets across North America and Europe, in addition to their two studio albums including the most recent City Folk.
If the name Sylvie Simmons rings a bell, there’s a good chance you’re a real deal music fan. Not only is Simmons an editor for Mojo Magazine, but she’s also written books about Neil Young, Serge Gainsbourg and made the New York Times’ Best Seller list for her acclaimed biography, I’m Your Man: The Life Of Leonard Cohen. On top of that, Simmons is one of those rare music scribes who also plays music and writes songs. Her eponymous debut album boasts collaborations with Giant Sand’s Howe Gelb and Thøger Lund. Simmons’ whispery inflections toe the line between Claudine Longet and Isobel Campbell, with a slightly darker tone that’s perfectly suited for her lilting folk songs of love and loss.
Branford Marsalis – In My Solitude: Live At Grace Cathedral
Three-time Grammy Award winner Branford Marsalis holds the distinction of being one of the very few notable jazz artists who have performed at San Francisco’s Grace Cathedral – not since Duke Ellington in 1965. For this solo saxophone performance, the eldest Marsalis son tackles a wide array of material from C.P.E. Bach’s “Sonata In A Minor For Oboe,” to “I’m So Glad We Had This Time Together” from The Carol Burnett Show (in addition to four improvisations).
The Flaming Lips – With A Little Help From My Fwends
The Flaming Lips, with the help of some of their musician “fwends” (like Moby, Tegan and Sara, MGMT, Foxygen), came together for this track-by-track remake of The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, adding 21st century effects to the experimental and ambitious album from 1967. This album’s opener takes almost a minute to reach familiarity, ending with a searing guitar solo by J. Mascis. And sounding almost unrecognizable, Miley Cyrus appears on “Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds” and the middle section of “A Day In The Life.”
Marcia Ball – The Tattooed Lady And The Alligator Man
Start your Holiday partying early with this blues, R&B and Zydeco-drenched album from esteemed Texas and Louisiana roots music singer and pianist Marcia Ball. Delivering a rousing romp from the first notes, she is joined by artists like Delbert McClinton, who plays harmonica on “Can’t Blame Nobody But Myself.” She also reinterprets Hank Ballard & The Midnighters’ “She’s The One” into the swamp pop-inspired “He’s The One.”
The newest hits from the biggest stars, as well as the newcomers who are just starting to make noise, in this staple of Regional Mexican music from the northern states of the republic. With themes ranging from romance & social commentary to organized crime and partying, the one constant is the signature accordion runs, steady rhythm of the bajo sexto and snare – as well as the ever emotive vocal performances from the idols of today’s Mexican music.