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No Mercy In This Land is a blues record. Charlie Musselwhite and Ben Harper were introduced to one another by John Lee Hooker. The legendary musician thought the two men should play together, so he brought them into the studio to record a song called simply “Burnin’ Hell.” The two remained friends and their paths periodically crossed out there on the road. But it wasn’t until 2013 that the two met up in a studio to record what would be their Grammy winning album Get Up!. And as good as that record was, it was just the beginning. Both men agree that their friendship deepened in the many months of touring that followed. And it’s that bond, that closeness, that makes this new record something special. At first glance, Ben Harper and Charlie Musselwhite might seem an unlikely pairing. While Ben grew up in in the tree lined Southern California college town of Claremont, a bastion of culture and liberalism just east of Los Angeles, Charlie was raised in Memphis during the time of rockabilly and Sun Records. But while the two might have come to their musical knowledge in different eras and places, as Charlie explains, “We were both searchers and we’re still seeking.” Each of them possess an enduring hunger for musical knowledge that came to them early.
Its been over two years since Hinds released their breakout debut album Leave Me Alone, and today the Madrid-based band announce their long-awaited sophomore record. I Dont Run will be out April 6 via Mom + Pop, and shows a bigger, better, faster, funnier, more dexterous Hinds. Co-produced by Hinds and Gordon Raphael (The Strokes, Regina Spektor), and engineered by Shawn Everett (Alabama Shakes, Perfume Genius, The War On Drugs, John Legend), I Dont Run is the product of a band fighting for their place, a band unwilling to rely upon their successes, a band who have just begun to prove themselves, and a band who plays hard but works even harder. With this second LP they continue their quest to own their narrative one of sisters doing it for themselves. Their debut album, Leave Me Alone has received major praise from NPR, Rolling Stone, The New Yorker, as well as appearances on Late Night with Stephen Colbert.
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That title isn't just some random number. 12 is indeed the 12th album from Canadian power-pop perennials Sloan, which means it's as good as Led Zeppelin IV, Black Sabbath's Vol. 4, and Chicago 4 all put together. But seriously: not only are Sloan the rare band to make it to their 12th record, and not only are Sloan the rare band to make it to their 12th record with all four original members, and not only are Sloan the rare band to make it to their 12th album with four original members who are equally prolific songwriters, they're arguably the only band to make it to their 12th album with four original members who are both equally prolific songwriters and all still working at the top of their respective games, sounding utterly ageless in the process. On 12, each of the four principals contribute three stellar songs that play to their core strengths: Patrick Pentland with the soaring rock anthems, Chris Murphy with the playful, participatory sing-alongs, Jay Ferguson with the jaunty prog-pop gems, and Andrew Scott with the whimsical innerspace explorations. Says Murphy, "I guess with the album title, we are showing off the fact the we have 12 records."
The Grammy and Brit nominated Courtney Barnett returns with her second album - ‘Tell Me How You Really Feel.’ It follows her critically acclaimed 2015 debut album ‘Sometimes I Sit And Think And Sometimes I Just Sit’, and a recent top 10 collaborative record, ‘Lotta Sea Lice’, with Kurt Vile. One of the most distinctive voices in music, Courtney is known for mixing witty observations with un inching self-assessment - fast forward to now and although all of the cleaver turns of phrase and an eye for story telling are still there; this new collection of songs see a more serious and outwardly tone capturing the current social landscape yet still retaining moments of intimacy and warmth. As the world becomes more familiar with Courtney Barnett these songs feel comforting and emphatic yet that raw energy and the ability to make the listener think still remain..