2020 April – June: “The sun came up behind us and everything turned to rust.”

SXSW got cancelled, but the music still lives.
I went through all the bands that were to perform and edited down a playlist of stuff I’d like to hear more of.

We may be shut in and concerts a far off idea
but there has been some wonderful new releases during this pandemic.

I was very excited about the debut new Hayley Williams album Petals for Armor. Although worth a listen, it falls flat.

Hum with a new album in 22 years?! Yes Please.
I have a Downward is Heavenward poster still hanging up in my childhood bedroom. The album is out in late August but already released digitally and it is stellar. It’s old yet new in all the best ways.

There were some other surprise releases.
After 23 years, previously unheard remixes of Pan Sonic by Muslimgauze & Zoviet France were unearthed. Mika Vanio & Bryn Jones are 2 musicians we lost too early. This release offers a real slice of electronic history with artists at the top of their game.

An unheard recording of a 1968 high school performance by jazz great Thelonious Monk comes out on July 31. Recorded by the school’s janitor, it’s a stellar recording of a genius at work.

After a label delay finally got my hands on the new Austra album.

Digging the 1st track off the new Sprain album

All the new stuff coming from IDLES is exactly what we need right now.

New Land of Talk delayed to July 31 and from what I heard so far it’s going to be top top.

Confirmed New Releases I got my eyes on:

The Beths – Jump Rope Gazers
Protomartyr – Ultimate Success Today
100 gecs -1000 gecs and The Tree of Clues
Glass Animals – Dreamland
Julianna Barwick – Healing Is A Miracle
Cut Copy – Freeze, Melt
No Joy – Motherhood
Bill Callahan – Gold Record
Lana Del Rey – Title TBA
Throwing Muses – Sun Racket
The Flaming Lips – American Head
Idles – Ultra Mono
Sufjan Stevens – The Ascension
Thurston Moore – By The Fire
Jonsi – Shiver
Matt Berninger – Serpentine Prison
Plants and Animals – The Jungle

Anticipated Releases
Neon Indian
Noname
Sky Ferreira
The Killers

New Tunes from the past 3 months

Flyer I found from a New Year’s Eve Eve show at the Cooler! Back when the Meatpacking district was still a meat packing district.
Blast from the past poster.

David Bowie (1983) Inclusion

David Bowie understood the impact of exclusion in business, and to culture and society, and it’s evident that he wasn’t afraid to call it out in this 1983 interview on MTV.

Finally, Some New Tunes

Austra : Hiruden – May 1, 2020 – Pink Fizz Records

Hayley Williams : Petals for Armor – May 8, 2020 – Atlantic

Nation of Language : Introduction, Presence – May 22, 2020

2020 Jan-March: “Cause I’m not sleeping. The weight of that weekend. As long as I’m breathing”

This is a tough one to write.
Normally I would be overly excited for all the new music and concerts in the new year. I have to be honest that it has been especially difficult to deal with these surreal times. Live music and new sounds is integral for me.

April-May has always been the most lively of months as the bands from SXSW start to sprinkle northwards on their tours. Sadly all festivals and live gatherings have been affected. I’m currently diving hard into every band that was supposed to play live during SXSW and I’ll be composing a playlist soon.

I urge you to support musicians during this difficult time by buying their albums and when this whole mess is over, celebrate loudly with them.

Here are some current musical avenues that has been keeping me afloat:
Ben Gibbard’s daily live streams really helped me the 1st week in quarantine

Amanda Shires has been doing livestreams and Jason Isbell dropped in on one to play a killer Radiohead cover.

Rev. Vince Anderson and his Love Choir has been doing Union Pool every Monday night for 24 years. He live streamed the last one.

La BlogothequeStay at Home” series on Instagram at 2 p.m.

Vulture’s list

 

Here’s my first playlist of this year’s newest releases.

Some highlights:

Austra is finally back with a new album. Their album Future Politics was my #1 in 2017

Beach Bunny dropped a new album and I was quite excited to see them last week :<   But catch em tonight Sat 4/4 at 10 EST at the UnCancelled Music Festival among many other great bands for the next week!

Caribou is back.  and it’s different.  and I’m liking it.

Play Celeste’s Stop This Flame at maximum volume.

Dan Deacon’s new album is becoming one of the best of 2020 so far.

Hayley Williams’ Simmer is already going to be 1 of my favorite songs of the year.

Juana Molina is back and as weird as ever

Elizabeth Powell’s Land of Talk comes out with a new album May 15. Been loving them for awhile. If the new single is any indication, it’s going to be a gem.

Really digging the third doom punk album by Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs.

New Soccer Mommy so far sounds pretty great.

Was supposed to catch U.S. Girls in May. The new album will tide me over.

“I’m okay, but I do miss you

 

Stay safe out there.
Pablo

 

Caroline Polachek Acoustic

Caroline played an intimate solo piano set in support of her new album Pang. The show was quite a contrast to the elaborate production at Bowery last year and the night before at Warsaw. I’ve already given my accolades on her album giving it the #1 slot for both song and album on my best of list. This performance was very special and quite magical the way her songs translated acoustically. Although the album came out in 2019 I finally got my hands on the vinyl release which was held up due to manufacturing  issues. No videos were allowed but below is a clip that comes close to capturing the performance. And be sure to check out her 1st TV appearance on Jimmy Kimmel.

My Top Songs of 2019

20. “Darjeeling”Barrie
19. “Rocket Fuel”DJ Shadow, De La Soul
18. “Lover”Noah Gunderson
17. “Darkness & Cold”Purple Mountains
16. “Kids in the Dark”Bat For Lashes
15. “Wasted Nun”Cherry Glazer
14. “Pink & Blue”Tycho, Saint Sinner, RAC
13. “Bruise”Yumi Zouma
12. “Ultrafiche of You”Com Truise
11. “Everyday”Weyes Blood
10. “Easy”Chaud
9. “Saying Goodbye”J.S. Ondara
8. “Con Altura”ROSALÍA, J Balvin, El Guinicho
7. “Not”Big Thief
6. “No Way Sit Back”And The Kids
5. “Harmony Hall”Vampire Weekend
4. “Far From Born Again”Alex Cameron
3. “Uncomfortably Numb”American Football
2. “Blood of the Fang”clipping.
1. “Pang”Caroline Palochek

Listen to the rest of the top 100 songs here on Spotify
Doublehalo best of 2019 

There was so much great music this year, its almost impossible to fit it all onto an arbitrarily numbered list.
Here’s another playlist of all the amazing tunes I also absolutely loved

More from 2019

Best Band Name Award: Ringo Deathstarr

If you liked the bands and hopefully introduced to new sounds, go and support them! Buy their music, merch, or better yet, see them live!

Happy New Year !!!
Very exited for what the next decade will bring.
As always, thanks for listening