A couple of days ago we reported that Way Out West had added Iceage, Billy Bragg, Azealia Banks, A$AP Rocky and Yelawolf to their already good-looking line-up and they've continued in the same fashion; confirming First Aid Kit and King Krule as well. Plus today they announced that they're now a full three-day festival with the festival area being open for all three days (earlier years it's only been open for two, with the clubs going on for all three days).
I was introduced to Badlands by Oskar at No Modest Bear yesterday and I'm definitely impressed. Badlands is the new project by Niklas Tjäder from Vidderna (whom I haven't heard yet either, but they're definitely on my to-do list after hearing this) and Catharina Jaunviksna and so far they've only released one track called "Never Dry Out", which you can stream below.
First Aid Kit are releasing their second album The Lion's Roar in the UK and US next week - it's out here in Sweden already - and in December they stopped by my friends at The Line of Best Fit to record a beautiful little session video for them. The Söderberg sisters chose to perform "Blue" from The Lion's Roar and you can watch the session below - it's quite great.
I've previously posted about Azure Blue, the musical project of Stockholm's Tobias Isaksson, and last year he released his (excellent) debut record Rule of Thirds via Hybris. This morning he made his television debut on the Swedish national tv channel TV4's morning show where he played two tracks from Rule of Thirds; "Seasons" and "Catcher In The Rye", as well as gave an interview. Watch the two performances below and click here to watch the interview (it's in Swedish).
I'm a huge fan of Bruce Springsteen so I'm always curious when he's releasing new material and on March 6 he'll be releasing his seventh studio record Wrecking Ball, but considering the (lack of) quality of his 2009 album Working On A Dream I'm skeptical. Earlier today the first single from Wrecking Ball was released online and it's definitely not making me any more optimistic. The single is called "We Take Care Of Our Own" and you can listen to it using the YouTube player below, accompanied by a lyric video.
I've been listening to Kathleen Edwards' new album Voyageur a lot lately, and it's finally out in North America now with a UK release following next week. One of the strongest tracks on Voyageur is the single "Change The Sheets" which Edwards performed last night on Late Show with David Letterman. Watch the performance below, it's quite excellent.
I've been excited about First Aid Kit's new album The Lion's Roar for quite some time now and both pre-album singles, "The Lion's Roar" and "Emmylou", are excellent, but now you can finally listen to the full album. NPR is hosting a stream of the album as part of their First Listen-feature and the album is released in Sweden today with the US and UK releases following next week.
Last month I posted a first track from Diamond Rugs' upcoming debut lp in the form of "Christmas In A Chinese Restaurant" and now they've unveiled the first proper single from the album; "Gimme A Beer". Diamond Rugs are a new project from Deer Tick frontman John McCauley, Black Lips guitarist/vocalist Ian Saint Pe, guitarist/vocalist Hardy Morris of Dead Confederate, Steve Berlin from Los Lobos, Deer Tick's Robbie Crowell and drummer Bryan Dufresne from Six Finger Satellite with McCauley being the most prominent on these first two tracks.
Sweden's Loney Dear released his excellent Hall Music in October last year (which almost broke my top 15 of 2011) and a few days ago the video for the beautiful "Loney Blues" was released. The video is directed by Ewan Macleod and you can watch it below.
Last week the Gothenburg-located Way Out West festival announced that The War On Drugs, Feist and Refused were to join Bon Iver for the 2012 edition of the festival and since then they've kept busy with Azealia Banks, A$AP Rocky and Yelawolf being confirmed as well.
If you've been reading this blog for the past couple of months you'll know that I'm a pretty huge fan of the Swedish act Korallreven, and if you're anything like me you can't wait to get your hands on more music from them. Well lucky you then, since Korallreven's international label Acéphale have shared a reworking of "Sa Sa Samoa" from their debut lp An Album by Korallreven by the Korallreven themselves.
Ryan Adams' Ashes & Fire is one of my favourite records from last year and now he's released a second video from the album, for the albums second single "Chains of Love", following the one for the first single "Lucky Now". This one is kinda classic music video-styled. Watch it below.
The Australian instrumental trio Dirty Three are returning with a new album on February 28 via Drag City in the US and Bella Union in the UK. The Dirty Three consists of Warren Ellis of Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds and Grinderman plus Mick Turner and Jim White who have acted as backing musicians for Cat Power, PJ Harvey and Bonnie 'Prince' Billy among others.
Their new album will be called Toward The Low Sun and they've now shared a first mp3 from the album in the form of "Rising Below", which sounds reminiscent to Ellis' soundtrack work with Nick Cave to my ears. Give it a listen and/or download it below.
Remember that stream of Porcelain Raft's new album which was up for a minute last week? Well, here it is again, and this time it's not going away for awhile (hopefully). Porcelain Raft is set to release his debut full-length Strange Weekend next week via Secretly Canadian and it's a pretty amazing album. I've had the privilege to listen to it for a few weeks now and it's a stunning album, mixing electronic dream pop with influences from glam rock into a mesmerizing mess - definitely the finest album I've heard from 2012 so far. Should be a top 10 candidate at the end of the year as well. Give it a listen below (via The Hype Machine).