Sleater-Kinney – “Bury Our Friends”

This is not a drill. Famed Olympia, WA indie punk rock Sleater-Kinney are back! Returning with their first new record since 2005′s amazing The Woods. After the release of that record, the band went on “indefinite hiatus” and we all wept collectively as the prospects of their reunion appeared to grow less and less probable. The girls went on to other horizons, most notably guitarist-singer Carrie Brownstein, who’s gained some rightful popularity for writing and co-starring on the TV series Portlandia, and she and drummer Janet Weiss released a very good rock record with their currently defunct band Wild Flag in 2011. The other guitarist-singer, Corin Tucker, who gave the band one of their most defining elements in her untamed caterwaul of a voice, released two records with her band The Corin Tucker Band.

But now they’re back! New track “Bury Our Friends” was released on a mysterious 7” that came with their recent career-spanning box set Start Together, and it has now been officially declared: new record No Cities to Love is coming January 2015! And the song comes with a lyric video for the new single, starring the always awesome Miranda July. Watch and listen above to the chiming, propulsive track, with the twin vocals in the chorus hitting that nice little sweet spot that reminds us why this return is so very, very welcome.

No Cities to Love comes out January 20, via Sub Pop.

clipping. – “Inside Out”

Between “Body & Blood,” “Story 2,” and “Work Work,” West Coast experimental hip hop trio clipping. has been dropping some pretty intense and odd music videos. “Inside Out” is one of the strangest of them thus far, featuring a headless figure walking through a series of nocturnal, urban settings. As the lyrics of Daveed Diggs quickly roll against the track’s glitchy beat, many of the objects referenced in Diggs’ lyrics rise up through the hole where this figure’s head should be. Hilarious concept, fun to watch.

Check out my extremely positive review of clipping.’s new album right here.

Shabazz Palaces – Lese Majesty

With more motifs and musical dead-ends than legitimate songs, the new Shabazz Palaces album is suffocated with a surprising amount of filler.

Shabazz Palaces – “#CAKE”

Winding, twisted, and psychedelic is the new Shabazz Palaces song, “#CAKE.” It’s a cut off the experimental hip hop project’s forthcoming album, Lese Majesty, which is looking at a July 29th release on Sub Pop Records. Enjoy!!!

clipping. – CLPPNG

clipping. lives up to hip hop tradition and pushes “noise hop” unorthodoxy on their sophomore album.

Shabazz Palaces – “They Come in Gold”

Shabazz Palaces, the experimental hip hop duo behind of one of our favorite albums of 2011 Black Up, thankfully has a new project due out in a couple of months. It is titled Lese Majesty, and it is looking to be even more ambitious than its predecessor, at least in terms of structure, with this one being comprised of seven suites over the course of 18 tracks – it’s so intricate, it comes with a map. But it actually might be more aurally adventurous as well, this lead single “They Come in Gold,” containing countless ear-grabbing electronic textures. In particular, the vaguely brassy one that rises above the mix’s myriad swirling and ringing sounds. And the transition midway through the song is really quite breathtaking, leading into perhaps the twosome’s most powerful verse yet. Stream it up there; happy listening!

Lese Majesty drops July 29 via Sub Pop (which is months too many away).

clipping. – “Work Work”

clipping. is sounding pretty polished on “Work Work,” the lead single from their Sub Pop and studio debut clppng. The harsh noise elements of Midcity are all but gone, but the trio is progressing and maintaining their identity as one of hip hop’s most forward-thinking outfits magnificently.

While the song sports some club-centric synth work and clipping. has clearly placed a greater emphasis on their hooks, the track’s instrumental is nevertheless incredibly inventive. According to Rolling Stone, the beat was “made by rolling a ball-bearing in a metal Thermos, smashing cinder blocks, and crumpling a beer can.” And on the flow front, all of the electricity of the Midcity-and-prior work is preserved – hell, it might just be turned up! The outlook for the group’s debut is extremely promising.

clppng is due out June 10 via Sub Pop. A reminder we absolutely loved the aural assault of  Midcity last year:

The Notwist – “Kong”

Next month German indietronic quartet The Notwist will drop its first album in six years, Close to the Glass. This second single, “Kong,” is certainly a buoyant number, but due to its conventional indie rock composition, it isn’t particularly exciting. At least not until around the three minute mark, which sees the band throwing in everything and the kitchen sink for the track’s glitchy outro. Hopefully we’ll find plenty more grand moments like this interspersed throughout the album. For now, check out “Kong” above, and enjoy!

Close to the Glass is due out February 25 via Sub Pop.

No Age – An Object

California rock duo No Age comes through with their most abstract release yet with An Object.

WATCH THE REVIEW

 

 

clipping. – “Jump” / “Or Die”

During a recent performance at The Stables in celebration of Sub Pop’s Silver Jubilee, recent signees clipping. performed two new tracks: “Jump” and “Or Die,” which are tracks I’m hoping make it to their first album on the famed Seattle label. Give a live to those live renditions via the videos above, and catch a review for clipping.’s midcity album / mixtape below:

Thanks for KEXP for capturing these videos, too!