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Saturday, June 12, 2021

James McMurtry, The Wallflowers, MBG, Modest Mouse, Gary Numan drop into the New Music bin

James McMurtry: Canola Fields

We're longtime fans of this Texas singer-songwriter and are happy to hear a new album is on its way. Horses and Hounds is his first LP in seven years and his debut on New West Records. Rolling Stone calls McMurtry a "hyper-literate" writer whose "lyrics are rich in detail." This song opens with a drive through Southern Alberta, where the color of the fields of canola trigger a memory: "about the same chartreuse as that ’69 Bug you used to drive around San Jose.” He sings of reconnecting with that person later in life: "Cashing in on a 30-year crush / You can't be young and do that."

The Wallflowers: Who's That Man Walking 'Round My Garden

The latest single to pop out ahead of the Exit Wounds LP due next month builds on a time-worn theme: man comes home from work and finds a strange car in the driveway / strange shoes under the bed / strange man in the kitchen. In this case, Jakob Dylan says the garden "is whatever you hold dear and find worthy of protecting. Might be a woman, could be your future, may be your peace of mind. Keep out of mine and I’ll keep out of yours.” Spin says "the timeless Americana rock sound the band is known for fuses with a little extra guitar-driven funkiness" on this track.

MBG: Go O.U.T.

Expressing the feelings of many, Toronto songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Leena Rodriguez sings of being "cooped up, locked down in a bungalow" for months and wanting to get back out in the world - but still nervous about being around "the people that live without fear." Get Some Magazine calls this single "a perfect slice of post-pandemic punk ... infectious, and kind of pummeling, with some wondrously distorted guitars, lockstep drums, and MBG’s unique scream that turns into a genuine roar at one point."

Modest Mouse: Leave a Light On

The second single to land in our New Music bin ahead of The Golden Casket "feels woozy and borderline psychedelic at the edges," writes Rolling Stone, "but it’s anchored by a big indie rock sing-along hook: “We’re leaving, we’re leaving, we’re leaving / We’ll be home soon.”

Gary Numan: Saints and Liars

The veteran of late-70s-early-80s New Wave recently released his 18th LP, Intruder. It's a concept album that "looks at climate change from the planet’s point of view," Numan explains. "If Earth could speak, and feel things the way we do, what would it say?" The music is much darker and heavier than in Numan's early works (e.g. "Cars") and would mix well with Muse at its most foreboding.

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