Release Radar 8/13/21 - Big Thief vs Steely Dan

Release Radar 8/13/21 - Big Thief vs Steely Dan

This week I get some oldies, some flashbacks, some remixes, and a few new tracks in my Release Radar.

Caveman finally releases their long-awaited record Smash, their first in five years. I’ve yet to pick it apart, but the first four singles all tested positive. If you’ve read this blog, you know I’ve raved about their music, and how they run the gamut of styles. I’m excited about this release!

Strand Of Oaks is back as well, with “Jimi & Stan.” Kind of reminds me of the two friends I lost Bobby and Lance. It seems a bit more upbeat than the last time we found the band, and this could be a good thing!?

The final piece of new music this week comes from Adrianne Lenker‘s Big Thief and it’s a great one. “Little Things” is an upbeat number with bouncy keys and shimmering guitars that meander through several tempo changes.

The Charlatans and The Go! Team team up on “Tellin’ Stories” for a remix complete with old-school drum loops, funky keyboards, and some heavy reverb on one of my favorite, rambling vocals.

Recently started listening to a lot of Steely Dan again after hearing Kanye West’s “Champion.” “Hey Nineteen” sounds fantastic as Walter Becker’s staple guitar tones jump from the speakers, mixing smoothly with Fagen’s silky voice and groovy keyboard chops. It’s a shame we’ll never get to hear this duo perform together after Becker’s swift passing in 2017. Northeast Corridor: Steely Dan Live!, the first live Steely Dan album in over 25 years, is due out on October 1st.

Another crazy collaboration brings Michael McDonald together with Toad The Wet Sprocket for their latest single, “The Best Of Me.” It’s not bad, but it takes a little getting used to. Sort of like the Celebrity Dating Game.

“Here is something you can’t understand/How I Could Just Kill A Man!” The ‘Hill’s original version had such a distinct sound that it’s hard for any remix to hold a candle to it. I was hoping for so much more from The Alchemist, but this remix with Beat Butcha falls short, very short, losing the entire original vibe on this blast from the past.

What can I say about Mating Ritual that I haven’t already said? They never fail to surprise me on my Friday morning runs. They change up their sound on a dime, while bands like Weezer have continued writing the same song for the last twenty years.

Your Jazz Cut Of The Week, is “Between Days,” from Stones Throw artist, Keifer. This piece is a subdued piano affair, perfect for mid-morning reflection. Once you start listening to the song you’ll think it sounds familiar, and it does, as it’s a cover of The Cure’s “In Between Days.” What a fantastic treat!

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