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Saturday, June 30, 2018

New sounds from St. Paul, Sir Paul, Young The Giant, Interpol, Hannah Brown

We have no idea why the upcoming album from St. Paul and the Broken Bones is called Young Sick Camellia, and we're not sure we want to know. We're also not sure why the first single is called "Apollo," since it doesn't seem to have anything to do with the Greek god, the Harlem theater or the space capsule. But we're popping it into our playlist anyway. The eight-piece band from Alabama, led by singer Paul Janeway, turns out what Rolling Stone calls "a dance-leaning disco-horn strut that blends the band's classic Southern soul with thoroughly modern R&B production."

Joining St. Paul in our New Music bin this week is Sir Paul - Paul McCartney, of course. His next release is called Egypt Station, which is named after one of his original paintings (embellished for the album cover art). He describes the album as something like a train trip in which "each song is like a different station." Of the two singles released so far, we're picking the upbeat "Come On To Me," wherein the ageless ex-Beatle sings about youthful flirtation.

It requires a couple of connections, but we can travel by train from Liverpool to Birmingham, the home town of singer-songwriter Hannah Brown. We previously featured the intimate song "Stay" from her 2017 EP Better For This. She's working on her second collection and has just released a single, "So Should You." This song features more elaborate production but, again, very personal and direct lyrics about a relationship. The refrain: "I can handle the truth / and so should you."

As usual, our New Music picks for the week encompass a wide range of styles. We turn now to New York post-punk revivalists Interpol, whose latest album Marauder is due in August. It's produced by David Fridmann, best known for working with Flaming Lips. We're spinning the first single, "The Rover." SPIN critiques the track, saying it "sounds like past Interpol with Fridmann's trademark fuzziness on top" but that underneath is "a great song, one that easily rivals the previous era's 'All The Rage Back Home.'"

We finish this week's tour in Southern California with Young the Giant. After a two-year break, the alternative-rock band has released a single, perhaps signalling that an album is in the works. The song is called "Simplify." Frontman Sameer Gadhia says, “Everything in modern life is complicated ... and often times it is easy to lose your true self.  But love is simple." And so, it's a song to a lover: "Staring in your eyes, everything simplifies."

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