We're nearly finished April, the month of rain and indecisive temperatures, and as we all know, April showers inevitably bring May flowers. Those flowers come a little early this year in the form of a new Exclaim! issue, here to brighten your day and enrich your musical knowledge. Once again, we've crammed page after page of interviews, reviews and features for all things music, movies and videogames between the covers. Grab yourself a copy today at a record store, street box, cafe or venue across Canada. R&B foodie Kelis snags this month's cover story. The "Milkshake" connoisseur sat...Read More
A couple of days ago, Chicago hip-hop upstart Chance the Rapper fell ill and had to cancel his Coachella appearance after being hospitalized. Now, the MC's manager has issued a statement explaining the details of the illness. A letter from Chance's rep Patrick Corcoran dated April 22 explains that, last Friday (April 18), the rapper had a high fever and experienced difficulty breathing. He went home to L.A. to rest, but his fever rose to 104 degrees by Sunday, and he was unable to talk due to throat inflammation. Chance then went to the hospital and was put on an IV drip, while...Read More
It's Earth Day, folks, that wonderful day during which we celebrate our planet's rich bounty — for music enthusiasts, that means the rich bounty of new records that every sweet, sweet Tuesday promises. To help you separate the lush greenery from the compost, we've pulled together reviews of some of the week's big album releases in our weekly New Release Roundup, below.
Kelis has finally unveiled the long-awaited Food, an album whose primary motif is espoused by song titles like "Breakfast," "Jerk Ribs," "Biscuits n' Gravy" and "Cobbler." To find out whether this soul food is a veritable feast for the ears or the type you wrap up in a napkin and pocket, you'll have to read our review.
Those with a taste for big riffs and pop-punk anthems should sink their teeth into the Menzingers' new one, the Exclaim!-approved Rented World, while folksier types might find more to chew on in Michael Feuerstack's guest-loaded Singer Songer, on which guests like John K. Samson (the Weakerthans), Bry Webb (the Constantines) and others contribute to an LP our reviewer called "a gorgeous and cohesive set of seemingly effortless, overheard-at-the-party indie-folk."
For more folk goodness, listeners might want to try Torontonian folk wunderkind Jerry Leger's Early Riser, on which he "sounds nearly as wizened as a late-career troubadour." Those with a taste for something slightly more out-there should hear hip-hop spaceman Future's triumphant, guest-laden new LP Honest.
Of course, there are more reviews for every kind of music fan in our Recently Reviewed section. Swing by daily for the latest album reviews and recommendations. As always, you can hear some of our favourite songs from these albums and many more in our Rdio Genre Playlists:
Morgan Kibby has made a name for herself by co-writing and appearing on material with M83, but the songwriter is ready to go solo with a debut LP as White Sea. The artist's In Cold Blood is due May 20 through Crush Music/SONGS. A press release explains that the record comes in the wake of some high-profile work with M83, with Kibby having co-written, arranged and performed on a handful of songs on the project's 2008 LP Saturdays = Youth and 2011's Hurry Up, We're Dreaming, including the latter's big single, "Midnight City." She has also toured with the act. In...Read More
Vincent Gallo's 2003 film The Brown Bunny is perhaps best known for its infamously explicit oral sex scene, but this shouldn't overshadow its noteworthy soundtrack, half of which consists of original material from then-Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist John Frusciante. This spring, that soundtrack is finally getting its first official vinyl pressing. It will be out in the next couple of weeks through Twelve Suns. The soundtrack has previously been issued on CD. There was also a vinyl version credited to a company called Brown Records, but according to Discogs, this is a bootlegged...Read More
The worlds of heavy metal and community theatre collided by accident recently when the logo for metal vets Lamb of God was put in use, without the authorization of the band, on ticket stubs for a religious play in Salem, VA, of the same name. The gaffe was revealed on Reddit [via Metal Sucks], with a ticket stub to the Salem Community Easter Drama's Lamb of God, which ran last week, showing off the familiar logo of the thrash outfit. Apparently whoever lifted the graphic didn't do much research as to where the logo came from, or how the Richmond, VA outfit feel about the...Read More
When we reviewed Steve Aoki's 2012 effort Wonderland, we asked, "What's a Steve Aoki album without the collaborations?" Now, the famed EDM party starter has confirmed the details of his guest-heavy upcoming double album. Neon Future I will be out on August 12 via Dim Mak/Ultra Music, with Neon Future II to follow in early 2015. Guests featured on the first part of Neon Future include Waka Flocka Flame, Fall Out Boy, Empire of the Sun, Will.i.am, Flux Pavilion, Bonnie McKee and Machine Gun Kelly. The album is apparently about an imagined future characterized by...Read More
When Nashville-based songwriter Mary Gauthier released The Foundling in 2010, we noted that the album had many Canadian connections. Now, Gauthier has a new tie to the Great White North, as she's signed to Six Shooter Records for the Canadian release of her latest effort, Trouble & Love, due out June 10. A press release notes that the album draws on Gauthier's painful personal experiences, resulting in "tales of survival and struggle with new rays of hope and growth piercing the caverns of hurt." It reportedly features a minimal sound and slow tempos, with backing provided...Read More
After proclaiming Gener's Gone in a demos set last year, former Ween frontman Aaron Freeman has announced he will deliver an LP later this year with his new project, FREEMAN. The band's self-titled debut drops July 22 through Partisan Records, with the 12-song set having been produced by Chris Shaw (Bob Dylan, Public Enemy). While coming two years after Freeman's solo tribute to Rod McKuen, Marvelous Clouds, FREEMAN is a separate venture finding the titular singer joined by a four-piece band. A press release explains that the songs on FREEMAN are spiritual in...Read More
The death of house pioneer Frankie Knuckles late last month impacted a number of music fans, including U.S. President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama, who recently penned a letter of condolence to the producer's friends and family. The letter was shared by DJ David Morales over Facebook and finds the president and first lady calling Knuckles, born Frederick Dunson, a "trailblazer" in his field, noting that "Frankie's work helped open minds and bring people together, blending genres to capture our attention and ignite our imaginations." You can see the letter in full down...Read More
Organizers behind Sudbury, ON's Northern Lights Festival Boréal recently teased this year's instalment by revealing Tokyo Police Club would be one of the headlining acts, and now they've announced the next wave of artists attached to the summer event include Canadian great Bruce Cockburn, Wintersleep and more. A press release for the fest, which runs July 4 to 6 at Sudbury's Bell Park, confirms that veteran singer-songwriter Cockburn will make his way out on stage July 5 to promote his latest LP Small Source of Comfort, as well as a back catalogue 31 albums deep. Also signed up for...Read More
Though they're called Jokers of the Scene, the Toronto-based electronic duo are actually some of the most fascinating and hotly tipped electronic musicians out there, thanks in no small part to their willingness to embrace everything from techno to kosmische to noise. As such, we're excited that the band are finally set to release their proper debut album. Called End Scene, the album is "based on decades of VHS-addled film music, new wave jams, weirdo library records, acid house bangers, selected ambient works and warehouse jackers," a press release states. The album's...Read More
Brooklyn duo Blondes continued their hot streak with last year's excellent sophomore set Swisher. Like they did with their debut album, they'll now follow it up with a new remix EP. Called Rewire, the release features one reinterpretation from Swisher's title track courtesy of Simian Mobile Disco, and three of "Wire" from Claro Intelecto, Huerco S. and Function, respectively. The EP arrives today (April 22) courtesy of RVNG Intl. You can stream Huerco S.'s remix of "Wire" below, complete with some black and white digital visuals. Rewire: 1....Read More
Though apparently going to a Kings of Leon show these days runs you the risk of contracting measles, the rock'n'roll brother band have announced another batch of tour dates to keep them busy until next fall. While the group have some overseas concerts scheduled later this spring, the Kings' next North American trip doesn't start until late July. The additional dates pretty well take place down beneath the U.S./Canada border, but there is one Canadian date booked at Toronto's Molson Canadian Amphitheatre on August 5. You can see all of the show info, running all the way from May to...Read More
Yesterday (April 21), we learned that Jay Z was at the centre of an extortion case, with producer Chauncey Mahan allegedly trying to sell a trove of recordings made between 1998 and 2002. Now, Mahan has spoken on the matter and denied any wrongdoing. He told TMZ that Def Jam had asked him to keep track of the recordings, which are for the albums Vol. 3… Life and Times of S. Carter (1999) and The Dynasty: Roc La Familia (2000). At the time, he says, Jay Z was "a stupid kid smoking blunts." Since then, he claims to have repeatedly told Hova's people that he had the...Read More
Run the Jewels, the collaborative project between El-P and Killer Mike, were met with enormous critical and commercial success for their self-titled debut last year. Thankfully, we won't have to wait too long for a follow-up as the duo are already working on their next album. According to some Instagram photos from both artists, as well as their producer Daddy Kev, it's looking like the next one will have some high-profile collaborations. But they're not grabbing Kanye, Drake or Jay Z. Instead, these guests are some of the biggest names in alternative rock. Self-titled Mag...Read More
Singer-guitarist Devin Miller and drummer Garth Covernton have been a part of Vancouver's indie rock scene for a few years now, the former as a member of Young Pacific and the latter with 41st and Home. Now, they're making music together as Reef Shark, and their debut album is ready to go. Better Weather will be out on June 18. The band self-produced the 12-song set along with Covernton's 41st and Home bandmate George Knuff. The results were mixed by Jesse Gander (Japandroids, White Lung). Miller handled all of vocals, guitars, bass and keys, while Covernton played percussion...Read More
With his trademark curly pompadour and a powerful voice, young UK soul singer-songwriter Daley is ready for the world to take notice. His debut album Days & Nights, released this February, is filled with emotionally heavy songs, at times drenched in heartache, and at others motivational and uplifting. The balance between those two extremes provided the inspiration for the title and final song on the album. "Initially I just chose Days & Nights because that's the song that felt like, 'I'm writing an album now,'" Daley tells Exclaim! "I was working with [Suede's] Bernard...Read More
Having already killed it with his Madlib collaboration Piñata, no one would blame Freddie Gibbs for spending the remainder of 2014 firmly resting on his laurels. Instead, the rapper has a solo album on the way and now another collaboration too. Gibbs has teamed up with DJ Fresh (also known as the World's Freshest) for the latest instalment of the latter's ongoing series The Tonite Show. The project sees Fresh team up with artists for a full release, and previous editions have seen him work with Trae the Truth, Mistah F.A.B. and Keak Da Sneak. The Freddie Gibbs...Read More
Californian hardcore group Trash Talk have carved out a niche in the rap community too, thanks in no small part that they're signed to Odd Future Records and routinely collaborate with hip-hop artists. That'll continue on the band's upcoming new album. Called No Peace, the release sees the group working with hip-hop producer the Alchemist. There's also an appearance from crooning Odd Future friend King Krule, and the unGoogleable performer Wiki. It all sounds like a weird batch of collaborators for a hardcore record, but from the sounds of lead single "Cloudkicker," the...Read More