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The Early Bird: Top New Recorded Releases 6-3-22 – 6-9-22, Reviewed

The alt folk Angel Olsen outed herself as gay and hooked up with a transgendered member of her band, who dumped up, and now she is with another person and here is her album, Big Time, which opens with one of her best songs to date, the country brooder “All The Good Times” but soon settles into a lugubrious if pretty sets of makeouts and makeups (Grade: B-).

Still with albums, I reviewed Post Malone’s excellent and consistently musical Twelve Carat Toothache, mostly dark and brooding, electronic base, autotuned album of distinction (here) (Grade: A), Drive-By Truckers have been over extending themselves for a coupla years, on the country rocker Welcome 2 Club XIII where they drop the politics they still don’t manage a musical breakthrough or a lyrical one, instead it is the essence of the band growing old and worse, the best moment is aided by Margo Price, and the worst opens the proceedings (Grade: C+), AGUILERA finds Christina singing in Spanish on a reggaetón album where she does an exciting, though vocally not her best work, set of bangers (Grade: B), women performing neo-r&b exploded a coupla years ago lead by Solange with first lieutenants NoName, SZA and H.E.R., 070 Shake has a similar vibe on You Can’t Kill me, but more electronic and weird while never removing the light from the consistently attractive songs (Grade: B+).

Over to singles, Paul Anka uses an arrangement that reflects Frank Sinatra circa the mid-70s on a fair take on Bob Dylan’s “Farewell Angelina” (Grade: B+), “Spitting Off the Edge of the World” is Yeah Yeah Yeahs first new material in nearly ten years and it handily maintains the brand (Grade: B), we haven’t heard from Panic At The Disco in four years but the grand return “Viva Las Vengeance” is a new wavey rocker with operatic vocal and a Clash lick (Grade: B), I always believed the great Icona Pop deserved more than one hit and out, and “I love It” is the hit and the re-edit is a mistake (they slow it down) but I am still happy to hear it again (Grade: B+), if Will Butler left Arcade Fire because he wanted to perform his own lousy indie r&b as per “A Stranger’s House”, he might well want to rethink his foreign policy (Grade: C-). Finally, Lipps, Inc only had the disco blast “Funkytown”, a song that is difficult, but not impossible, to fuck up, and St. Vincent’s update is more electronically enabled and might fine (Grade: B+).

You Can’t Kill Me – 070 Shake – B+

Big Time – Angel Olsen – B-

AGUILERA – Christina – B

Welcome 2 Club XIII – Drive-By Truckers – C+

I Love It (feat. Charli XCX) – I Don’t Care 2022 Re-Edit – Icona Pop – B+

Viva Las Vengeance – Panic! At The Disco – B

You Can’t Kill Me – Paul Anka – B+

Twelve Carat Toothache – Post Malone – A

Funkytown – From ‘Minions: The Rise of Gru’ Soundtrack – St. Vincent – B+

A Stranger’s House – Will Butler – C-

Spitting Off the Edge of the World – Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Perfume Garden – B

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