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Saturday, January 8, 2022

New from Eels, Elvis Costello, Aaron and the Lord, Big Wreck, Laura Lee Lovely

Eels: Amateur Hour

Early last year, Eels frontman Mark Oliver Everett rang up producer John Parish, who worked with him on 2002's Souljacker. Ideas and tracks began flowing between Paris' studio in Bristol UK and Everett in LA, resulting in Extreme Witchcraft, due later this month. This opening track on the 14th Eels album is "a taut piece of indie rock with a raw feel," writes Clash Magazine. "The production is kept simple, the arrangement unadorned, allowing Eels to run rampant in the studio."

Elvis Costello: Farewell,  OK

Just ahead of the release of The Boy Named If (And Other Children's Stories) comes this latest single. “Like a lot of good rock and roll songs this began with a drummer down in a basement and a singer howling outside the backdoor,” Costello says of the track. “It’s a blurred gaze, a drink too much, an accidental punch and a kiss goodnight, all in the tumult of a dancehall.”

Aaron and the Lord: This Love Ain't Dead

Singer-guitarist Aaron Perrino, formerly of  Boston indie band Sheila Divine and solo project Dear Leader, began collaborating remotely during pandemic lockdown with multi-instrumentalist Steven Lord of Dirty Bangs, resulting in the recent release of Aaron and the Lord. Guest vocalists include Tanya Donelly of Belly, featured on this track, which harks back to the sound of female-fronted 80s bands. The LP is billed as "a ten-spot of vivid, slicing indie rock songs, with nods back to the chiming guitars and stentorian vocals of the bands [Perrino] grew up on and forward to a new kind of pop-rock future."

Big Wreck: Fields

"Everything about the latest release by longtime Canadian-American rock fixtures Big Wreck is on a huge scale," CanadianBeats writes in its review of Big Wreck 7.1, the first installment of a planned three-part album. The website calls the EP "loud and energetic, smooth at the core with just the right amount of roughness to its edges," and says this track "has an especially warm, upbeat feel."

Laura Lee Lovely: Allandale

Adding a dose of dreamy pop to this week's New Music bin is this emerging New Zealand artist, aka Laura Watson. The Revue calls her an artist to watch in 2022, and says this track will have you "basking in the superb synths, the occasional dissonant guitar stroke, and pulsating 808s [electronic percussion]. ... Watson’s ethereal vocals add to the song’s mysticism and escapism quality."

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