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    • Shop Small and Save Big with Under the Radar’s Memorial Day Sale - 35% Off Subscriptions
      Summer's here and we've got your poolside reading material for you, the best independent music magazine under the sun! And this long weekend is the perfect time to add Under the Radar to your summer reading list, as we are having a Memorial Day Sale.
    • I’m Not Your Man
      What is the range of difference between one artist with an appealing, clever voice and a fluent guitar with attitude and another? Well, taking in Marika Hackman's sophomore album, I'm Not Your Man, gives some idea. 
    • Soundtracking the Resistance - Trump Goes Abroad
      This politics column thing has been rolling along for a few weeks now and it's time to move to the next level. Here, and from now on, you'll find different sections bringing a main story, a brief news round-up, words direct from musicians themselves, and the song of the week.
    • Soundtracking the Resistance - Trump Goes Abroad
      This politics column thing has been rolling along for a few weeks now and it's time to move to the next level. Here, and from now on, you'll find different sections bringing a main story, a brief news round-up, words direct from musicians themselves, and the song of the week.
    • Ariana Grande Issues Longer Statement About Manchester Attack: “We won’t let hate win.”
      On Monday night, two explosions went off in the foyer at the Manchester Arena in Manchester, England after Ariana Grande finished her concert. Twenty-two people died, including children and teenagers, in a suicide bomber terrorist attack that ISIS has claimed responsibility for.
    • Five Best Songs of the Week: alt-J, EMA, Kirin J Callinan, Washed Out, and Ride
      To help you sort through the multitude of new songs released in the last seven days, we have picked the five best. Below that we have also highlighted other notable new tracks shared this week. This week was light on exciting new songs, likely due to the impending long Memorial Day holiday weekend, but there were still pleasures to be found.
    • Listen: The Charlatans - “Plastic Machinery (Sleaford Mods Remix)”
      Britpop and Madchester survivors The Charlatans released a new album, Different Days, today via BMG. The band have previously shared the album's first single, "Plastic Machinery," which features the legendary guitarist of The Smiths, Johnny Marr, along with Brian Jonestown Massacre frontman Anton Newcombe, as well as a video for the song.  […]
    • Listen: Ride - “All I Want (GLOK Remix)”
      British shoegazing icons Ride reformed in 2014 and have been touring, and are releasing a new album, Weather Diaries, on June 16 via Wichita.
    • Watch: Washed Out - “Get Lost” Video
      Earlier today we posted a song by Washed Out (aka Ernest Greene), "Get Lost." Now the song has a video. Harvey Benschoter directed the colorful clip, which is an animated collage of old advertising images.
    • Priests - Katie Alice Greer on “Nothing Feels Natural,” Obama and Trump, and the DC Music Scene
      Washington, D.C.'s Priests (vocalist Katie Alice Greer, guitarist Taylor Mulitz, bassist G.L. Jaguar, and drummer Daniele Daniele) formed in late 2011 and have already released two cassette tapes in 2012 and 2013 (fittingly titled Tape One and Tape Two), 2012's Radiation/Personal Planes 7-inch EP, and 2014's Bodies and Control and Money 12-inc […]
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    • Premiere: WACO - 'Coolangatta' May 30, 2017
      Cosmic punk scenes...WACO make dirty, nasty rock music. Punk with overtones of psychedelia, they're reminiscent of early 70s squat rockers Pink Fairies or even aspects of the Motorhead catalogue. New EP 'Deathless' drops on June 2nd, followed by an EP launch at the Fighting Cocks venue in Kingston. New cut 'Coolangatta' leads the way […]
    • Listen: Saint Etienne Remix Kero Kero Bonito May 30, 2017
      Taken from new remix EP 'Bonito Retakes'...Saint Etienne have stepped in to remix Kero Kero Bonito - tune in now. Kero Kero Bonito's debut album fused K-Pop with a rich sense of irony, matching simple melodies to lyrics that cut a little deeper. Saint Etienne are clearly fans, and have invited the project to play main support on their new Brit […]
    • Grime Is On The Campaign Trail May 30, 2017
      AJ Tracey, Stormzy, Skepta are making their voices heard...A few weeks back some notable figures in grime hit social media to declare their support for Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. Since then, the politician has had a full sit-down with Boy Better Know don Jme, while grime has continued to work quietly on his behalf. At the weekend AJ Tracey hit the campaign […]
    • Next Wave #775: Island May 29, 2017
      Impeccable indie newcomers who do things their own way...Island are one of those tales many bands can only dream of. Selling out London’s Heaven while still unsigned, their soaring sound and eternally relatable lyrics have gained them a substantial following and there seem to be nothing stopping the quartet now. From jamming together for fun, Island quickly […]
    • Track Of The Day 29/5 - Ai May 29, 2017
      'Bakterial'Robin Appleton is the co-founder of Cranium Pie, a group whose whimsical adventures have recovered the wyrd roots of psych and prog. Launching new project Ai – Audio Intelligence – as a cinematic/soundtrack venture, he quickly began gathering like minds. Now a looseknit collective comprising several additional members, Ai will release th […]
    • Manic Street Preachers - Send Away The Tigers May 29, 2017
      A worthwhile look back at an important moment in the band's career...Manic Street Preachers will always stand for something but just over a decade ago, prior to the making of ‘Send Away The Tigers’, not even the band themselves seemed to know what that was anymore. On the surface the album may seem a strange one to reissue with a pile of demos, a DVD of […]
    • Risk To Exist: Clash Meets Maxïmo Park's Paul Smith May 29, 2017
      Defying right wing populism one show at a time...“I saw Tony Bennett here and it was a brilliant outing, so when it came round to booking dates for this tour I said, ‘Can we play the Royal Festival Hall?’ And here we are,” says Maxïmo Park frontman Paul Smith of the meteoric occasion that is the band’s performance inside the Southbank centrepiece. The quarte […]
    • Fleet Foxes To Live Stream Sydney Opera House Show May 29, 2017
      Watch it later today...Fleet Foxes are set to live stream the final part of their shows at Sydney Opera House. The band will release new album 'Crack Up' on June 16th, and recently unveiled a string of enticing preview cuts. Playing four shows at Australia's Sydney Opera House, the performance quartet draws to a close later today. Fans will be […]
    • LCD Soundsystem's New Album "Is Finally Done" May 29, 2017
      James Murphy makes onstage announcement...LCD Soundsystem's new album is "finally done" according to James Murphy. The band's surprise re-union was followed by a string of enthralling live shows, with the group seeming to push themselves further than ever. New tracks 'American Dream' and 'Call The Police' emerged earli […]
    • Noel Gallagher Will Release New Album In November May 29, 2017
      Guitarist breaks the news on Radio X...Noel Gallagher has revealed that his new album will be released "on November the 9th, I've been told". The songwriter makes a guest appearance on Radio X this evening (May 29th) and spoke to host Jon Kennedy about his future plans. Widely expected to release a new album later this year, the guitarist expl […]
  • RSS Eddie Trunk

      Excerpt courtesy of Confidential of the New York Daily News: Eddie Van Halen is one of the best guitarists of his generation, but he might have trouble passing a sixth grade health test. Former Van Halen manager Noel Monk recounts the time Eddie was hit with a paternity suit while engaged to Valerie Bertinelli. The... Read more
      Musician Chris Cornell reportedly had track marks on his arm when his body was found, according to a report Thursday. The legendary musician used an exercise band and a clip device to hang himself on May 17th, but sources close to the investigation now tells TMZ that the singer also had marks on his arm... Read more
      Unstoppable rock music icons Guns N’ Roses will electrify fans into the fall, announcing today a series of fifteen additional North American Stadium and Arena stops on their ongoing worldwide Not In This Lifetime Tour. Produced by Live Nation, the exhilarating global phenomenon is letting fans get closer with a newly added round of arena... Read more
      Rocklahoma is here! I’ve had the honor of hosting this festival, really one of the first of the rock festival wave, since it started in 2007. I fy to Tulsa tomorrow and will be spending an extended amount of time in that area. That’s because I am also hosting a show with Tom Keifer June... Read more
      With the original lineup together after an eight-year hiatus, and coming off of an incredible performance at Rock On The Range last weekend, Live has been added to the Rocklahoma lineup for Saturday, May 27th. Live will be stepping in for Soundgarden, who are unable to perform due to Chris Cornell’s untimely passing. Following Live’s... Read more
    • MR. BIG STREAM “1992” May 22, 2017
      As previously reported, Mr. Big will be releasing their new album, Defying Gravity, on July 7th. The band is streaming a new song song called, 1992, from the record, which can be streamed below. In addition to releasing a new CD, Mr. Big will be also be hitting the road. See the dates, for the... Read more
      Ruben Mosqueda of Metal Titans spoke with Diamond Head guitarist, and founder, Brian Tatler. Highlights from the interview appear below. MetalTitans: There are parallels between UFO and Diamond Head stateside; both acts caught the collective ear of American Metal musicians and cite Diamond Head as a direct influence. While you didn’t sell millions of records […]
      Vicky Cornell, the wife of Soundgarden singer Chris Cornell, issued a statement on May 19th remembering her late husband, who died the morning of May 18th at the age of 52, and speculated whether his suicide was the result of taking too much of his anxiety medication. “Chris’s death is a loss that escapes words... Read more
      As reported earlier, singer Chris Cornell passed away yesterday. There were questions raised as to whether the death was a possible suicide, as the vocalist was found with with a band around his neck. Unfortunately, a new report by the Associated Press, reveals that to be the case. The medical examiner determined that singer did... Read more
      Like many, I woke up today to the tragic news that one of rocks all time great singers Chris Cornell was dead at 52. For decades when anyone would ask me about my favorite late 80’s/90’s bands I would often answer Soundgarden, and that was largely due to Chris’ voice. Even when we had a... Read more
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  • RSS Chart Attack

    • Festival d’été de Québec Adds Another Round of Performers May 25, 2017
      If you weren't sold on the festival already with artists such as Gorillaz, Kendrick Lamar, Metallica and The Who, FEQ just took it to the next level. Festival d’été de Québec Adds Another Round of Performers by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • Interview with Irontom May 23, 2017
      If you haven’t heard of Irontom, do yourself a favour and keep reading. Interview with Irontom by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • Counting Down the Days Until We See Gorillaz at Festival d’été de Québec May 22, 2017
      There’s a lot to be excited about for this July’s Festival d'été de Québec: Muse, Kendrick Lamar, Wolf Parade, Metallica, The Who; but nothing has us excited like the promise of a performance by the newly reunited Gorillaz. Counting Down the Days Until We See Gorillaz at Festival d’été de Québec by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • FIRSTS: The Record Company May 19, 2017
      Chris Vos of The Record Company shares the band's origin story in Firsts. FIRSTS: The Record Company by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • New Music Videos: Thidius “Mention Nothing”, Magic Giant are “Set on Fire” May 19, 2017
      From the conventional to the not so conventional, these new music videos are the best of the week. New Music Videos: Thidius “Mention Nothing”, Magic Giant are “Set on Fire” by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • Peaches Added to NXNE Lineup May 19, 2017
      The countdown to NXNE has started and they will be kicking off the festival with Peaches at The Phoenix Concert Theater. Peaches Added to NXNE Lineup by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • New Songs: Grizzly Bear debut “Mourning Sound”, Only Yours is “Waiting” May 18, 2017
      Get in the mood for summer with our synth-heavy list of the week’s best new songs. New Songs: Grizzly Bear debut “Mourning Sound”, Only Yours is “Waiting” by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • Another Sad Day In Music May 18, 2017
      Chris Cornell, lead singer of Soundgarden and Audioslave has died. Another Sad Day In Music by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • Nick Hakim: Making Old New Again May 17, 2017
      The neo-soul singer’s debut album 'Green Twins' comes out on Friday, May 19th and we caught up with him before his show in Toronto to talk about what led to his unique sound. Nick Hakim: Making Old New Again by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.
    • Prism Prize 2017: Kaytranada Takes Home Award May 15, 2017
      The winner of the 5th annual Prism Prize has been announced! Prism Prize 2017: Kaytranada Takes Home Award by Chart Attack | Chart Attack.

The Falcon’s Nest Best Albums of 2015 (So Far)

Posted by falconi5 on June 10, 2015


It is pretty much impossible to comprehend that 2015 is almost 1/2 way over. The year started a bit slow as we waited with bated breath for the release of the new Madonna album, and new releases from Brian Wilson, Willie Nelson, and Van Morrison, all mostly met with the sound of one hand clapping, and far from their best effort.

Songwriters turned solo artists have been prevalent so far with Chris Stapelton and Gretchen Peters coming out from behind their collective quills with two highly superlative records that should stand the test of time. Indie Icons My Morning Jacket released Waterfall, again not their best, but highly listenable, and just plain Icons The Waterboys are out with Modern Blues, one of the best records of the year so far.

The new Mumford and Sons is pretty much as expected, unlistenable, and the 2015 version of Whitesnake performing various selections from the David Coverdale era Deep Purple days is an unfortunate waste of vinyl.

So carry on my wayward sons and check out the top twenty below, according to the Falcon’s Nest that is, and make sure you scroll down to “and don’t sleep on” at the end of the list for a bunch more records that are worth your ear time that did not make our top twenty, but may be on yours.

Party on Garth!

20.)  Chris Spedding – Joyland

The veteran session player, who has played with Roxy Music, Elton John, and Roxy Music delivers a more than solid set of noir tunes all by himself. Ian McShane makes a surprise cameo appearance on the title track.

19.)  Alabama Shakes – Sound and Color

A little more textured than their debut, the second time around still has the back of the barroom blast we have come to know and love. A pairing of the first two albums from these upstarts makes for about as solid a one two punch as you will find.

18.) Low Cut Connie – Hi Honey

This one is like that girlfriend you could never take home to mother. Sexy, tattoos in places that rarely see the sun, a bit crazy, and a hell of a lot of fun.

17.)  Ray Wylie Hubbard – The Ruffian’s Misfortune

Nothing short of a Texas national treasure.  “Chick Singer, Badass Rockin'” is worth the price of admission alone.

16.)  Fools Gold – Flying Lessons

You wouldn’t be straying too far from the sun if you made this one your anthem album of the summer. Bright, sunny, psychedelic in the best possible way, and disco tinged in just the right places.  Look, listen, love.

15.)  Palma Violets – Danger in the Club

Not quite as reckless as their debut, yet no less dangerous.  This modern-day Garage Rock classic could have been a Pretty Things record circa 1968.

14.)  Ryley Walker – Primrose Green

Sometimes talent just carries the day. The opening title cut on this one hits you between the ears with about one full minute of guitar mastery even before Ryley Walker songs a note in his Donovan by way of Nick Drake vocal style. This is one epic of a folk song, if there is such a thing.  With influences ranging from British pastoral folk to Miles Davis and Cat Stevens, Primrose Green is about as refreshing an album as you will hear all year.

13.)  Whitehorse – Leave No Bridge Unburned

Luke Doucett and Melissa Mclelland channel their inner Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazelwood, new millennium style.

12.)  Black Star Riders – The Killer Instinct

Rising from the ashes of Thin Lizzy, this one might be the Rock album of the year.

11.)  Rhett Miller – The Traveler

A sterling example of why the head honcho of The Old 97’s is one of the best front men in the business.

10.) Calexico – Eye of the Sun

Any record with Sam Beam, Band of Horses, and Neko Case helping out has got to be good.  And this one is great.

09.) The Staves – If I Was

A sprinkling of Americana and Soft Rock seeps into the blue print here which is a little bit of a change from their maiden voyage, but fear not, the crystalline vocals of the sisters remain very much intact.

08.)  Della Mae – Della Mae

One of the only all female Bluegrass bands you will find around.  Don’t be afraid of a little banjo or Mandolin and immerse yourself in some refreshing new music.

07.)  Noel Gallagher – Chasing Yesterday

Going back to his Brit Rock Roots, he even has a song that sounds strikingly similar to “Rock On'” Gallagher is at the top of his game.

06.)  James McMurtry – Complicated Game

McMurtry is simply one of the best song writers in the game. His best effort since the stellar Just Us Kids, he continues to carry the torch for common people living complicated lives.

05.) Gretchen Peters – Blackbirds

She has written a ton of hit songs for others including Faith Hill’s “The Secret of Life” and “Independence Day” for Martina McBride.  Stepping out on her own she shows signs of stardom in her own right.  The song “Blackbirds” might be the Americana song of the year.

04.  David Corley – Available Light

A years in the making overnight success Available Light resonates like an ill-gotten evening spent over-served in your favorite watering lamenting over loves lost, fortunes squandered, and lives over lived, all in a voice that sounds like it comes from the gutteral crossroads of Lou Reed and Tom Waits.

03.  Chris Stapelton – Traveller

Riding on just the right side of the Country trail right there between Waylon Jennings and Dale Watson, the secret here is in the storytelling. This troubadour should be side by side with Sturgill Simpson and Jamey Johnson on your new school Outlaw Country Rolodex. Stepping out from behind his quill to strap on his guitar, just take one listen to “Tennessee Whiskey” and Chris Stapelton might just be become your new best friend.

02.  Father John Misty – I Love You, Honeybear

A bit more diverse than 2012’s Fear Fun this time out the good father combines Pop, Americana, and Singer Songwriter with his Laurel Canyon vibe to create what might eventually be one of the best records of 2015.

01.  Dawes – All Your Favorite Bands

Sailing on to exotic ports of call ranging from Jackson Browne, The Band, and 70’s vintage Beach Boys, four albums in Dawes has definitely hit their musical stride. Every tune is a study in song construction with the vocal mix from mostly Taylor Goldsmith front and center on a cloud of sublime guitar work that seems to come from the Dire Straits or J.J. Cale Songbook. The title cut “All Your Favorite Bands” could have been on the B side of “The Pretender,” and if there is any musical justice in this world, this one should be the song of the year for 2015.

And don’t sleep on:

21.) The Wateboys – Modern Blues

22.)  The Lone Bellow – Then Came the Morning

23.)  Catfish and the Bottlemen – The Balcony

24.)  Steve Earle – Terraplane

25.)  Banditos – Banditos

26.)  My Morning Jacket – Waterfall

27.)  Rodney Crowell and Emmylou Harris – The traveling kind.

28.)  Torres – Splinter

29.)  Rose Windows – Rose Windows

30.)  Paul Weller – Saturn Patterns

31.)  Hollis Brown – 3 Shots

32.)  Melody Gardot – Currency of Man

33.)  Boz Scaggs – A Fool to Care

34.)  Ryan Bingham – Fear & Saturday Night

35.)  The Dunwells – Lucky Ones

36.)  Blackberry Smoke – Holding All the Roses

37.)  Whitey Morgan – Sonic Ranch

38.)  John Moreland – High on Tulsa

39.)  Jesse Malin – New York Before the War

40.) Sufjan Stevens – Carrie & Lowell

41.)  Ron Sexsmith – Carousel Love

42.)  William Eliot Whitmore – Radium Death

43.)  The Minus 5 – Dungeon Golds

44.)  Gil Landes – Gil Landes

45.)  Jose Gonzales – Vestiges and Clawes

46.)  Blur – The Magic Whip

47.)  Matthew E White – Fresh Blood

48.)  Sonny Landreth – Bound by the Blues

49.)  A Thousand Horses – Southernality

50.)  Holly Miranda – Holly Miranda







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