Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Upcoming albums aplenty: Radiohead's 'The King of Limbs' and many more

There is little doubt that 2011 holds the promise of being a HUGE year for new music.
Look no further than yesterday's announcement that this weekend will see the first new full-length studio album from Radiohead since 2007's In Rainbows .

The King of Limbs will be the world's first so-called "Newspaper Album," and will be available in a number of 21st century-minded editions/formats:

For collectors and mega-fans of Radiohead (which sums up most of the band's followers), there is a special deluxe edition featuring two clear 10-inch vinyl records, a standard CD, a digital download and exclusive artwork (as noted on the band's official Web site: "625 tiny pieces").

That deluxe version sells for $48 for the basic package.

A $53 package also includes a digital pre-order. Both ship May 9, 2011. A general release on CD and 12-inch vinyl album is set for release via all major music retailers on March 28, 2011.

Important note: fans can purchase a $9 MP3 version and a $14 CD-quality WAV file (which sounds better than the smaller format 320 kbps MP3 files) of The King of Limbs on Saturday, Feb. 19, 2011 if you preorder the album.

For more information, check out www.thekingoflimbs.com.

Legacy Recordings Releasing Heart's 'Night At Sky Church,' an Electrifying Full-Length Live Concert Film, Available Everywhere Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Historic Career-Spanning March 2010 Concert at Seattle's Experience Music Project Lensed in Red Cam HD for Home DVD & Blu-ray Release

Legacy Recordings will release Night At Sky Church, a new full-length concert film from the ground-breaking Seattle-based rock band Heart, available everywhere on DVD and Blu-ray disc on Tuesday, March 8, 2011.

Lensed in glorious Red Cam HD during Heart's triumphant hometown gig last March at the Experience Music Project, Seattle's Rock & Roll History Museum, Night At Sky Church showcases a stunning career-spanning selection of warm, revelatory and electrifying performances.

Night At Sky Church includes definitive interpretations of Heart's biggest hits, some of the most anthemic tunes in the entire classic rock canon ("Barracuda," "Crazy On You," "These Dreams," "Alone," etc) while providing a beguiling in-concert introduction to the band's newest songs ("WTF," "Hey You"), the tracks that drove Red Velvet Car, Heart's first new studio album in six years, straight into America's Top 10 following its release last August.

The concert includes three cuts ("These Dreams," "Safronia's Mark," "Your Long Journey") featuring multiple Grammy® winning bluegrass-country singer-songwriter Alison Krauss. "Working with Ann and Nancy Wilson far exceeded any expectation of how talented and beautiful I already thought they were," said Krauss. "Getting to be a part of this concert was incredible!"

Heart's Night At Sky Church performances show why the Wilson sisters and their music resonate so deeply with fans, and why their influence widens among other musicians.

"Ann and Nancy Wilson, simply put, are rock & roll," said American country artist Carrie Underwood, who performed with Heart on the VH1 special "Heart & Friends - Decades Rock Live!". "For decades, they have been teaching the rest of us that we can all only dream of singing those sky high melodies and looking that cool on the guitar! Heart is the perfect combination of beauty and rock, and I feel more than honored to have shared the stage with them."

Sugarland's Jennifer Nettles, part of the VH1 Divas 2010 line-up with Heart, praised them saying, "The voice, the guitar playing, the song writing: Heart comes on stage, a burning flame. They aren't women who rock. They are rockers who forever changed the course of music and charted a path for my life. I am forever grateful."

"Ann and Nancy have always been and continue to be the best female rock vocalists I've ever heard live," says American pop singer Katy Perry, who also joined Heart as part of the VH1 Divas 2010 roster. "They could sing the phone book, and I would still listen."

VH1 Classic will air a broadcast edition of HEART - Night At Sky Church during the DVD release week. Please check your local listings for showtimes in your area.

Last August, Red Velvet Car, the first new studio album in six years from Heart, entered the Billboard 200 best-selling album charts at #10, becoming the seventh Top 10 album of the group's career. Heart's first album for Legacy Recordings, the critically-acclaimed Red Velvet Car marked the return of the group to the Sony Music Entertainment family. The album reached #1 in sales on Amazon.com in September.

The critical response to Red Velvet Car has been universally ecstatic. "The barracudas are back and at the top of their game," wrote Rolling Stone (September 2, 2010) while USA Today (August 25, 2010) called the album "Intimate, intense and anchored by Ann's powerhouse vocals and Nancy's aggressive acoustic guitar...." The New York Times (August 4, 2010) found Red Velvet Car "aggressive, delicate and enduring" while the Los Angeles Times noted that "Thirty-four years after the band's debut, Heart's dreamboat sails on."

For their first new album since 2004's Jupiter's Darling, the first ladies of arena rock took an acoustic approach to a collection of songs inspired by the world around them, arranged for an assortment of strings including guitar, mandolin, dobro, banjo, fiddle, viola, cello and autoharp, all played by Nancy Wilson and the album's producer, multiple Grammy nominee Ben Mink, who may also be heard on Night At Sky Church.

Nine of the album's songs were written and appeared for the first time on Red Velvet Car. The album's closer, "Sand," is a newly recorded version of a song originally written and recorded by the Lovemongers, Ann and Nancy's 1990's acoustic side project.

Ann Wilson and her younger sister, Nancy Wilson, first showed the world that women can rock when their band Heart stormed the charts in the '70s with hits like "Crazy on You," "Magic Man," "Barracuda," 'Straight On," "Even It Up," "Kick It Out" and so many more. Not only did the Wilson sisters lead the band, they wrote the songs, and played the instruments too, making them the first women in rock to do so. Heart continued topping the charts through the '80s and into the '90s with huge hits like "These Dreams," "Alone," "What About Love," "If Looks Could Kill," "Never," and a string of other hits that showcased the sisters' enormous talents as both musicians and singers. Along the way, Heart sold more than 30 million records, had 21 top 40 hits, sold out arenas worldwide, and had a profound influence on rock music.

Heart were 2008 recipients of VH1 Rock Honors, received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Northwest Grammy Foundation, and received ASCAP's award for Excellence in Songwriting in 2009.

Heart - Night At Sky Church - tracklisting


Straight On

Love Alive

Mistral Wind


Hey You

Red Velvet Car

These Dreams (with Alison Krauss)

Safronia's Mark (with Alison Krauss and Ben Mink)

Your Long Journey (with Alison Krauss and Ben Mink)

What About Love


Crazy On You



Magic Man

Bonus tracks

Back To Avalon

Kick It Out

For more information, visit www.legacyrecordings.com


Given the rousing artistic and commercial success of the first recorded collaboration of legendary country troubadour Willie Nelson and jazz statesman Wynton Marsalis on 2008’s Blue Note album Two Men With the Blues, it’s not surprising that the pair would rendezvous again. The New York Times called it “a smart and heartfelt record,” while Entertainment Weekly wrote that “Willie and Wynton may seem like an odd couple, but this live disc makes the country legend and jazz master sound like natural partners with Marsalis’ usual horn-fronted band doing the driving and Nelson settling in perfectly with his off-beat vocal phrasing.”

The first meeting of these kindred spirits took place at The Allen Room at New York ’s Jazz at Lincoln Center for two nights in 2007; their encore appearance was also staged at the heralded jazz house—this time for two sold-out nights at Rose Theater in February 2009 with special guest Norah Jones. Rather than rehash the previous material Nelson and Marsalis had first presented, the threesome paid homage to the music of the late Ray Charles, the iconic star of soul, r&b, country, jazz and pop.

On March 29, Blue Note will release the category-defying album from those shows, Here We Go Again: Celebrating the Genius of Ray Charles, a 12-tune song cycle about the ups and downs of love. It features tunes that Charles put on the musical map, including “Hallelujah I Love Her So,” “Cryin’ Time,” “Hit the Road Jack,” “Busted,” “Makin’ Whoopie” and arguably his greatest hit, “What’d I Say.” All the tunes feature new, original arrangements by Marsalis and artists within his Jazz at Lincoln Center circle. The songs are rendered in a variety of styles, including gospel two-beat, boogaloo, country ballad, bolero, hard bop, r&b, waltz and 4/4 swing. Instrumental support at the concert came via the trumpeter’s working quintet—tenor saxophonist Walter Blanding, pianist Dan Nimmer, bassist Carlos Henriquez and drummer Ali Jackson—and Nelson’s longtime sidekick, Mickey Raphael, on harmonica.

Marsalis arranged the set list as a story line about love: “You fall in love, you get lost and busted, and then you try to come back,” he says.

“It’s what I call root-groove music,” explains Marsalis. “The root music cuts across all the boundaries and genres in American music.” He adds, “There was a time in the early ‘50s when artists would come up and be influenced by all types of music.” Nelson agrees: “You have to love all kinds of music to put your own interpretation on [the songs].”

Nelson, who praises Charles’s classic country disc I Can’t Stop Loving You, says, “He did more for country music with that one album than any of us could have done because he opened country songs and country music to millions of his fans and brought a whole lot of people together.”

Jones was thrilled to be invited to share the stage. “It was a no-brainer for me,” she says. "I love Willie so much and have had a musical relationship with him. And I’ve always wanted to do something with Wynton.” When she heard the theme of the evening was going to focus on Charles’ music, she got excited: “I know all those songs. We all just love his music. That’s the common factor.”

“This was a special event for me,” says Nelson. “It always is when we get together.”

The track listing for Here We Go Again is as follows:

1. Hallelujah I Love Her So (Gospel 2-beat / Boogaloo / 4/4 Swing)
2. Come Rain or Come Shine (Walking Ballad)

3. Unchain My Heart (Bolero with Habanera bass)

4. Cryin' Time (Country Ballad)

5. Losing Hand (Dirge with Chain-Gang Shuffle)

6. Hit The Road Jack (Gospel 2-beat / 4/4 Swing)

7. I’m Moving On (Boogaloo with Afro-Latin Backbeat / 4/4 Swing)

8. Busted (Gospel 12/8 Shuffle)

9. Here We Go Again (Rhythm & Blues 12/8 Shuffle)

10. Makin’ Whoopie (Hard-Bop 2-beat / 4/4 Swing)

11. I Love You So Much (It Hurts) (Waltz)

12. What'd I Say (Boogaloo)

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