It’s safe to say that this edition of NRT is largely prog-rock centric, so expect some jazzy interludes, virtuoso solos, and lyrics that may have no tangible meaning beyond what’s directly on the surface. Maybe that last bit is only half true, but such is the nature of the genre. Most of the time it’s up to you, dear listener.
Tame Impala – Lonerism
Two years ago the throwback Aussie four piece Tame Impala first reached Yankee shores with their buzzy, blissful acid-rock delivered with a side of psychedelic production that could make any flower child want to go for a lucid stroll through the woods. As previously noted in SIMGE’s Lollapalooza coverage, the band has returned with an effort that avoid the sophomore slump and finds Tame Impala working within and expanding upon their established sound. Whereas Innerspeaker approached the big questions in life with a relatively innocent, wide-eyed gaze, Lonerism is the paranoid friend who thinks Big Brother is going to burst through the door and haul everyone away at any moment. Assuredly a lock to end up on many a “Best of 2012″ list this December, and this week’s SIMGE Top Selection.
Coheed & Cambria – The Afterman: Ascension
The tenor in the now veteran prog-metal outfit Coheed & Cambria could certainly be described as tumultuous in the wake of recent events. How many bands have to kick out their long time bassist for trying to hold up a pharmacy with a bomb threat? Regardless Claudio Sanchez is still kept awake late at night by the stories and melodies churning about in the universes he’s created for himself and his band. Enter The Afterman: Ascension, the anticipated result of where Coheed would go after painting themselves into a corner story and theme-wise with the conclusion of The Amory Wars narrative. Well, in the first installment of a double album Sanchez has chosen to shine a light on singular characters contained within his sci-fi saga with the usual complicated progressions and unorthodox choruses he’s become known and famous for. This album is not likely to convert any non-believers, but delivers on every nuance that those with Keywork tattoos have come to identify with. Coheed’s most praised influence is Iron Maiden, and the parallels in career trajectory are certainly beginning to shine.
Bad Books – II
A reprieve from the prog waters we’ve been swimming in is the follow up to Bad Books’ tremendous debut in the appropriately titled II. The combined output of Manchester Orchestra’s Andy Hull and singer-songwriter Kevin Devine, II takes what Bad Books can do with trumped up studio production replacing the acoustic-centric ballads of Bad Books. For once, this upwards trajectory doesn’t come at the price of losing the head and the heart of what was previously established between these two talents. Single “Forest Whitaker” is the best basis of comparison between the former and the latter.
Check out even more new releases below!
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis – The Heist
The Wallflowers – Glad All Over
Ellie Goulding – Halycon