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The Early Bird: Top New Recorded Releases 11-18-22 – 11-24-22 Reviewed

For some reason best known to himself, Patrick Stickles shares verses of this lyrical rewrite for Billy Joel’s dreaded “Piano Man” on “Drummer Boy” and Titus Andronicus perform it with a straight face and a Christmas cheerfulness that takes full advantage of Joel’s rhyming schemes. (Grade: B)

Over to albums, and if I was a lesbian (or even as a straight guy), Fletcher is one of the best self sexers, in a league with Girl In Red and King Princess: Fletcher is a mainstream pop singer obsessed with pussy and love (and breaking up and making up) on the excellent extended Girl Of My Dreams (Deluxe) (Grade: A-). I missed Uncut’s tres ordinaire album of the year, Michael Head & The Red Elastic Band’s Dear Scott, I can’t hear what on earth they heard -this defines nothing much, not bad jingle jangle guitar rock, but that’s it (Grade: B-). Former boy band of a type, Brockhampton have two new albums just released as a farewell, TM I’ll get to another time, The Family is overwhelmed by Kevin ABstract and even RZA features can’t help. Brockhampton, and I mean Kevin, have a lot on their mind though really, nothing will change from this as Kevin kickstarts his solo career (Grade: B+), post-punk Horsegirl as they take DIY and turn it onto its guitar throbbing, angular, hard rock drums what the fuck Rough Trade Super-Disc noisiness (Grade: B-), the excellence of the five song EP is on view with Alice In Chain’s Jerry Cantrell’s hard hitting post-grunge pre-post-punk guitar splashing black and white shades on five songs off Brighten (which doesn’t but you can’t have everything ), including an excellent try at “Prism Of Doubt” (Grade: B+).

I reviewed Gucci Mane’s heart breaking ode to his friend earlier today on “Letter To Takeoff” (Grade: A) , I’ve been waiting for the prices ($200 for nosebleeds during some performances) for Max Martin’s attempt at a Broadway Musical, a retelling wherein Juliet doesn’t kill herself but rather performs Max Martin’s greatest hits in “@Juliet” -the performance of “Since U Been Gone” is nothing special featuring original performer Kelly Clarkson plus Broadway’s Capulet played by Lorna Courtney (Grade: B-), kudos to Kurt Vile for a tremendous take on “Must Be Santa” with a gorgeous acoustic solo and a sort of nodded out but excellent attempt (Grade: B+). Finally, the always Americana vibed Weyes Blood with an ambient immersion on the snoozy “God Turn Me Into A Flower” and why not? Let the bees buzz me, I say.

The Family – Kevin Abstract – B+

Girl Of My Dreams (Deluxe) – Fletcher – A-

Letter To Takeoff – Gucci Mane – A

Rough Trade Super-Disc – Horsegirl – B-

Brighten – Jerry Cantrell – B+

Since U Been Gone – Juliet’s Version – Kelly Clarkson, Lorna Courtney – B-

Must Be Santa – Kurt Vile – B+

Dear Scott – Michael Head & The Red Elastic Band – B

Drummer Boy – Titus Andronicus – B

God Turn Me Into a Flower – Weyes Blood – B-

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