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  • RSS Under the Radar

    • The Decemberists Announce New Album, Share New Song “Severed”
      The Decemberists have announced a new album, I'll Be Your Girl, and shared its first single, "Severed." I'll Be Your Girl is due out March 16 via Capitol. John Congleton produced the album. Below is "Severed," followed by the album's tracklist and cover art. 
    • Eels Announce New Album, Share Title Track “The Deconstruction”
      Eels (the project of Mark Oliver Everett) have announced a new album, The Deconstruction, and shared its title track, "The Deconstruction." The Deconstruction is due out April 6 via E Works/PIAS. Below is the "The Deconstruction," followed by the album's tracklist and cover art, as well as Eels' upcoming tour dates.
    • Tracey Thorn Announces New Album, Shares Video for New Song “Queen”
      Former Everything But the Girl vocalist and Massive Attack collaborator Tracey Thorn has announced a new solo album, Record, and shared a video for its first single, "Queen." Record is due out March 2 via Merge. 
    • Ought Share Video for New Song “Disgraced in America”
      Montréal post-rockers Ought are releasing a new album, Room Inside the World, on February 16 via Merge (their first for the label, previously they were on Constellation). Previously they shared a video for its first single, "These 3 Things." Now they have shared the album's second single, "Disgraced in America," via a video.
    • 2017 Artist Survey: Annelotte de Graaf of Amber Arcades
      For Under the Radar's 15th annual Artist Survey we emailed some of our favorite artists a few questions relating to the last year. We asked them about their favorite albums of the year and their thoughts on various notable 2017 news stories involving either the music industry or world events, as well as some quirkier personal questions. 
    • Mount Eerie Announces New Album, Shares 11-Minute New Song “Distortion”
      Mount Eerie, the project of Phil Elverum (who used to record as The Microphones), released an acclaimed album, A Crow Looked At Me, last March via Elverum's own label, P.W. Elverum & Sun. 
    • Mouse on Mars Share New Song “Dimensional People Part III” (Feat. Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon)
      Mouse on Mars are releasing a new album, Dimensional People, on April 13 via Thrill Jockey. It's their first album in six years. Now they have shared its first single, "Dimensional People Part III," which features the chopped up guest vocals of Justin Vernon of Bon Iver. 
    • Vision Songs Vol. 1
      Since the late 1970's, Laraaji has developed a small but devoted peaceful global following while exploring creative cosmic expressions through ambient musical tones using open-tuned electric zither/harp. Most notably through his collaborations with ambient pioneer/innovator Brian Eno.
    • The Cat Returns
      The Cat Returns’ origins are about as weird as you’ll find for any Studio Ghibli film.
    • of Montreal Announce New Album, Share “Paranoiac Intervals/Body Dysmorphia”
      Kevin Barnes and of Montreal have announced a new album, White Is Relic/Irrealis Mood, and shared its first single, "Paranoiac Intervals/Body Dysmorphia."
  • RSS Clash Music News

    • My Bloody Valentine Announce Rare Live Show January 17, 2018
      It's their first for four years...My Bloody Valentine have confirmed plans for their first live shows in four years. 2017 ended on a high for fans of the famously slow-working group, with guitarist Kevin Shields confirming analogue re-issues and some new material. Clash named a new My Bloody Valentine LP in our list of albums we're desperate to hea […]
    • Young Fathers Announce New Album 'Cocoa Sugar' January 17, 2018
      New song 'In My View' is online now...Young Fathers have announced plans for new album 'Cocoa Sugar'. The Scottish group have been active of late, producing new music for Trainspotting 2 and an installation at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery. Now the Mercury winners have confirmed their full, official return - new album 'Cocoa […]
    • Track Of The Day 17/1 - ItsNate January 17, 2018
      'Show Me'ItsNate thrives on bringing opposites together. A rapper who refuses to sit in one lane, his music veers from style to style, half-inching the elements he finds most useful. So you'll find grime meshing with hip-hop, trap elements fused with R&B, alongside a dose of afro-swing (or however it is defined). New single 'Show Me […]
    • Premiere: Francis MacDonald - 'Beam' January 17, 2018
      Teenage Fanclub drummer turned BAFTA nominated composer...Shhh... we're here to tell you a secret. Alongside being the drummer for much-loved, vastly-influential Scottish indie types Teenage Fanclub, Francis MacDonald has also built up a shadow career. A noted composer, his work for film and television blends classical flourishes with a modern outlook, […]
    • Premiere: Supadupe Sound - 'Fallen' January 17, 2018
      Twilight R&B with a London feel...Supremely creative London collective Supadupe Sound have been making noises in the underground over the past 12 months. Re-tooling future-facing R&B with a UK slant, the group combine numerous vocalists, songwriters, and producers to create something completely distinctive. New single 'Fallen' should be the […]
    • Lowtide Pick Out Some Gems From The Melbourne Underground January 17, 2018
      Exploring the Australian city's complex music scene...Melbourne is one of Australia’s real arts hubs. A city where creativity seems to pour out of the walls and gush through the streets, it’s home to all manner of musicians, producers, DJs, bands, and other vagabonds and ne’erdowells. Lowtide earned a fair bit of acclaim in this hemisphere last year, wi […]
    • 7 Of The Best: Top Picks For Eurosonic Noorderslag 2018 January 16, 2018
      Flying out to the influential Dutch showcase event...Located to the north of the Netherlands the Dutch city of Groningen is one of the country’s real jewels. A small but immaculately formed conclave dominated by a historic university, the narrow streets, cobbled stones, and winding canals render it with an immediately recognisable, highly individual characte […]
    • Premiere: Gift Wrap - 'Losing Count' January 16, 2018
      B Boys' Brendon Avalos experiments with drifting pop loops...Gift Wrap is a new moniker from someone you may well be familiar with. Brendon Avalos has worked with Brooklyn punx B Boys for some time now, making a frenetic, inspired squall in the process. This new project, though, takes the musician in a completely new direction. All drifting pop loops an […]
    • Next Wave #821: Baywaves January 16, 2018
      In Association With VERO True Social...There are worse places in the world to be making music than sunny Madrid, and the emergence of bands such as Hinds and The Parrots from the city’s vibrant scene has turned heads all over the world. The next band set to follow in their footsteps are Baywaves, who came together from across Spain and Argentina and started […]
    • Porches - The House January 16, 2018
      Aaron Maine supplies the life-affirming aquatic...Of the four elements, not one of earth, air, or fire can quite compete with water when it comes to pure symbolic potency. Perhaps nobody knows this better than Porches lead-man Aaron Maine, who having impressed on ‘Pool’ and its subsequent demo renderings ‘Water’, has now brought his aquatic attachments to ‘T […]
  • RSS Eddie Trunk

      Coming this Monday to Trunk Nation a big show with Joe Elliot of Def Leppard and Neal Schon of Journey joining me live in the studio! Don’t miss this show live this Monday. Joe and Neal in at 3P ET. Also 2P ET Randy & Felix from Zebra drop by! It all happens this Monday... Read more
    • THE DEAD DAISIES SET TO “BURN IT DOWN” IN 2018 January 16, 2018
      Burn It Down, the new album from the Dead Daisies, is a muscular tour-de-force, a tornado of pounding drums, pulverizing bass, screaming guitars and in-your-face raw vocals. Evoking the best of 70s Rock, with moments of Birmingham’s finest, blended with the early works of Boston’s best, Burn It Down will do just that: burn down... Read more
      Have some new info regarding the Atlanta Kiss Expo this weekend I will be appearing at. I can now confirm that Vinnie Vincent has agreed to an interview. I’ll be broadcasting my SiriusXM show live in channel 106 Volume this Friday 1/19 from the Expo from 2-4P ET. Vinnie will join me at aprox 3P... Read more
      Frontiers Music and Spread Eagle are very proud to announce the planned release of a new studio album in 2019. The band has started pre-production in the Music Building, New York, NY which is the exact place where our debut album was written and rehearsed. Recording will take place at Studio E in Brooklyn, NY... Read more
      Had a great visit by Rick Allen on Friday to my Volume show. Talked all sorts of great stuff. Hear it  again tomorrow 8-10P ET on Volume 106 on SiriusXM or On Demand on the app. Coming soon to the podcast also. Tom Keifer on my current podcast. Please note my show on channel 39... Read more
      Singer Oni Logan has posted the following message on his Facebook page: “As a new year shines a light so do new beginnings.. Some that make the heart flutter and some that just have to happen. I’ve been the original vocalist for Lynch Mob on and off for many years, I’ve played a lot of... Read more
      World-renowned guitarist, and Bay-Area resident, Joe Satriani announces a fundraising auction, set to launch this Sunday, January 14th, at the Fox Theater in Oakland, CA to benefit the North Bay Fire Relief in Sonoma County. The online auction will be live for one week, with bidding ending on January 21st, bid here. The auction will... Read more
      Global rock icons and newly announced Rock & Roll Hall of Fame 2018 inductees Bon Jovi have announced the spring leg of their This House Is Not for Sale Tour, presented by Live Nation, which will include back-to-back performances at New Jersey’s Prudential Center on April 7th & 8th and New York’s famed Madison Square... Read more
      Motörhead guitarist “Fast” Eddie Clarke died Wednesday at 67. He was the last surviving founding member of the legendary metal outfit, best known for their 1980 hit Ace of Spades. “We are devastated to pass on the news we only just heard ourselves earlier tonight … Edward Allan Clarke – or as we all know... Read more
      Just realized it’s been a bit since I posted here as I was on the Moody Blues Cruise and then just jumped right back into other work. As usual Twitter ( @EddieTrunk ) is the place for up to the second news and info as it happens. Thanks to all the fans and bands I... Read more
  • RSS Rolling Stone

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  • RSS Chart Attack

    • Sawdust City Music Festival July 27, 2017
      The inaugural Sawdust City Music Festival takes over Gravenhurst, Ontario this August long weekend. Running from August 4th – 6th the festival features performances from a plethora of talented artists from the area and all over Canada. Whether you want to check out the Muskoka music scene or experience the Jim Cuddy Family Band perform [...] Sawdust City Mus […]
    • Interview: Danko Jones July 21, 2017
      We sat down with John Calabrese, bassist of Danko Jones to talk about the band's impressive 20+ year career, most memorable moments and their newest album Wild Cat.  Interview: Danko Jones by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • Interview: Kid Koala July 20, 2017
      Kid Koala chats with us about his chaotic party show Vinyl Vaudeville, his new album Music To Draw To: Satellite and working on . Interview: Kid Koala by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • The Lemon Bucket Orkestra July 19, 2017
      A Toronto music staple Lemon Bucket Orkestra had humble origins as buskers in Kensington Market, the band’s ringleader Mark Marczyk spoke to the Chart Attack team about the evolution of LBO and their drive to keep performing live for (and with) their ever-growing audiences. The Lemon Bucket Orkestra by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • Interview: Mix Master Mike July 17, 2017
      Mix Master Mike put on an epic show in Quebec City on Friday and again in Toronto last night. We chatted with him about his tour with Metallica and his new Virtual Reality work. Interview: Mix Master Mike by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • Interview: The Dirty Nil July 14, 2017
      The Dirty Nil played one of their biggest shows in Canada yesterday. We caught up with the band just before the show to talk about opening for The Who, touring and Minimum R&B. Interview: The Dirty Nil by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • Interview: A Tribe Called Red July 13, 2017
      A Tribe Called Red played their biggest show in Quebec yesterday at Festival d'été de Québec. We caught up with Bear Witness just prior to the festival to talk about We are the Halluci Nation. Interview: A Tribe Called Red by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • FEQ in 2 Days! July 4, 2017
      Celebrating their 50th year this summer,  Festival d'été de Québec is throwing an epic bash from July 6th to July 16th. FEQ in 2 Days! by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • Album Review: Prairie Cat’s Is Cary Pratt June 30, 2017
      The unconventional songwriter has been making waves with the release of his fourth album. Album Review: Prairie Cat’s Is Cary Pratt by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • REVIEW: !!! (ChkChkChk) June 17, 2017
      Wednesday, June 14th at the Horseshoe Tavern: dance-punk at its finest REVIEW: !!! (ChkChkChk) by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.

Album Review: Walker Lukens – Devoted

Posted by falconi5 on March 8, 2014

walkerIf Harry Nilsson, Paul Simon, and Warren Zevon had a love child, his name would be Walker Lukens. This Austin settled, by wayof Houston and New York City musician is that good, and with his new album Devoted he has managed to combine the raw, vulnerable musings of Nilsson, the pop sensibility of Simon, and the “on the edge” coolest guy in the room vibe of Warren at his Excitable Boy peak.

With the current Mumford-ization trend that is so popular in today’s musical landscape, it is somewhat of a refreshing change to find a record that is equally, if not more enjoyable than any of the recent releases by Mumford and Sons, The Lumineers, or Dawes, that does not make use of the trendy mandolin or dobra, a refreshing change that is worth the price of admission alone.

With song titles like “Drunk Logic,”  “The Night I Was Kissed by Patti Smith,” and “Kindle to Your Fire,” titles that would Make Tom Waits blush, Devoted is an old-school soul with an Indie heart sort of listen. The lyrics were all written during a 2012walker-lukens-640-300x187 East Coast tour, a spirit that somewhat flows through the record as the moods and sequencing have a certain next day, new city feel.

The album opens with the piano chords of “Drunk Logic” a somewhat mournful effort where Walker laments that all his friends have steady lovers and have all gone away, a sentiment that seems to get even a bit sadder as the poignantly placed organ drifts in toward the last 1/3 of the song. I can’t remember a song with just a voice, a couple of piano chords, and an organ that sounded so good. I would have placed this selection towards the end of the record, but that minor nuance aside, this is an all-encompassing, moving song.

“I Was Kissed by Patti Smith,” a song that could have been on any Paul Simon album, ups the fun quotient a bit, and while it never does mention Patti Smith directly, it does leave the first time listener wondering what they are in store for next after a pair of numbers that are pretty disparate in mood, but are both artistically elegant in their own way.

My first exposure to this album was by way of the first video “Dear Someone,” a brilliantly made stop action video, where the song, an almost epic sounding slice of power pop, combined with the visuals is certainly top notch.

The song “Brunch People” could have been on a before substance abuse took its toll Harry Nilsson record, with super production value complete with orchestral string arrangements that provided a real W-T-F moment for me.  I even had to sit down, take another sip of McAllen 10 year, my go to choice for good music listening, just to make sure I had not been transported by way of some way-back machine all the way to the year 1979. This is a seriously good tune.

“Kindle to your Fire” is somewhat of a departure in that it has a more contemporary electronica sort of feel to it with a strong lead from Walker and almost Beach Boy style vocals in the background. This song is one of those tunes that definitely is more than the sum of its parts. I am still trying to wrap my ears around this one. As someone that likes to describe songs in terms of influence, this song does indeed flummox me. Changing moods from Beach Boys, to a tinge of Doo Wop, all the way to James Murphy and LCD Soundsystem, this song pleasantly and sublimely soothes me.  Let’s just say it is brilliant, I like it, and we will leave it at that.

Devoted, is as polished an album as you will hear all year, by an artist that deserves to be a years in the making overnight success. My only hope is that this album finds an audience.  When JFK in Scotland asks me where he can get the album on his side of the pond, and Larry in Chicago compares Walker favorably to Harry Nilsson, I wonder that since they are both roughly 2 ½ times the age of the concert goer that recently attended the cd release party in Austin, could one single album appeal to such a wide demographic and still be successful.

I say Hell to the Yeah!

And Walker, I will stand on Phil Ochs’ peach crate, inside of Woody Guthrie’s empty boxcar, in the middle of a Nebraska cornfield during a protest, with a satellite feed from farm aid, and loudly proclaim that Devoted is not a folk record, and Walker Lukens is not a folk singer.

– Walt Falconer, Houston Texas, USA


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