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10 Albums to Stream: Slint, Afghan Whigs, Woods, the Both, and More

slint, spiderland, reissue, stream

Another week, another batch of fresh album streams. Below you’ll find a remastered version of Slint’s classic Spiderland, followed by new releases from Afghan Whigs, the Birds of Satan, Woods, and more.

1) Slint, Spiderland (Remastered). “It’s hard to talk about Slint without using two foreboding and loaded descriptors: ‘seminal’ and ‘post-rock,’ neither of which conjures much in the way of warmth. To call a band ‘seminal’ is to redefine its albums as homework; to call a band ‘post-rock’ is to make it seem as shadowy and formless as self-important as the term itself. Listening to Spiderland now, freshly remastered for this box set by Bob Weston, it’s clear how much it deserves reconsideration as a work of haunting beauty and surprising warmth.” (via NPR)

2) The Both, The Both. “To fuse the music of Aimee Mann and Ted Leo is to demand a tremendous stylistic shift of one or the other; Mann’s voice is too sullen and soft, and his too barky and frenetic, for them to interlock easily… Mann and Leo swap verses in ‘You Can’t Help Me Now,’ a sprightly but melancholy ambler that could have been airlifted straight out of the Magnolia soundtrack. Throughout the song and the album, each singer sounds freshened and energized — never diminished — by the collaboration.” (via NPR)

3) The Birds of Satan, The Birds of Satan. “Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins has formed a new side project called the Birds of Satan with bassist Wiley Hodgden and guitarist Mick Murphy. Spanning a total of seven tracks, the band’s upcoming, self-titled debut album features contributions from, who else, Dave Grohl and Pat Smear, as well as percussionist Drew Hester and keyboardist Rami Jaffee.The Birds of Satan opens with a nearly 10-minute prog-rock epic (‘The Ballad of the Birds of Satan’), before diving into hard rock (‘Pieces of the Puzzle’), balladry (‘Raspberries’ and ‘Too Far Gone to See’), and guitar heroics that would make Eddie Van Halen proud (‘Wait Til Tomorrow’). — SPIN (via Soundcloud)

4) The Afghan Whigs, Do to the Beast. “Running with the album’s cinematic feel, Do to the Beast is in many ways Dulli’s True Detective. It conjures the 1990s in flashbacks, but its voices belong to men who’ve outlived the youth they had then. Dulli uses murder metaphors in ‘Matamoros’ and ‘The Lottery,’ and the supernatural enters into ‘Lost in the Woods’ and ‘Royal Cream.’ The real reason Do to the Beast resembles this year’s television preoccupation is that it gives us the voice and vision of a solitary, brilliant man in a constant tug-of-war with evil, as he imagines it — and as it still runs, though quieter now, in his veins.” (via NPR)

5) Woods, With Light and With Love. “While previous singles ‘Leaves Like Glass’ and ‘Moving To the Left’ were freewheeling folk-pop cuts, ‘With Light and With Love’ treads grittier ground. Clocking in at a whopping nine minutes, the track calls to mind a pastoral rocker circa 1971, complete with dusty charm and the hum of a hokey organ. About halfway through, Woods really kick up some dirt, transitioning into a full-on, rowdy jam session.” — Consequence of Sound (via Pitchfork)

6) Willis Earl Beal, Curious Cool. “Spanning eight tracks, the album sees Beal continuing the transition away from his bizarro brand of lo-fi that began with last year’s Nobody knows. While ‘Like A Box II’ is one of the more grimy examples of Beal’s gritty and experimental blues-rock, Curious Cool is dominated by tracks that emphasize purer sentimentality.” — Consequence of Sound (via Soundcloud)

7) Jessica Lea Mayfield, Make My Head Sing... “Kent, Ohio native Jessica Lea Mayfield matches a grunge-era deadpan with gnarly left-field roots music in service of haunting, smoldering rock’n’ roll. She caught some extra attention thanks to her association with geographic and stylistic neighbor Dan Auerbach of Akron’s Black Keys, who produced her 2011 LP Tell Me. But Mr. Ultraviolence wasn’t involved in Make My Head Sing…, the record Mayfield’s releasing this spring. Rather, she bunkered down in a Nashville studio with bassist/husband Jesse Newport in search of something stripped-down yet weighty.” — Stereogum (via Pitchfork)

8) Deleted Scenes, Lithium Burn. “The LP takes its name of Lithium Burn from the metallic acid reflux that frontman Daniel Scheuerman experienced when taking mood-stabilizing lithium. The songs apparently explore sadness and personal distance, with detail-specific lyrics prompting worldly observations. ‘We wanted to take an emotional risk with this album, and sound fully like ourselves — with no disconnect between what we sound like live and what our album sounds like,’ Scheuerman said.” — Exclaim! (via Pitchfork)

9) Plague Vendor, Free to Eat. “Los Angeles’ Plague Vendor sure know how to make a memorable entrance. On the band’s piledriving single ‘Breakdance on Broken Glass,’ shards fly and headbangers’ hair flys as the group squeals and proceeds to smash everything in sight. Although the song is a short burst of activity — it clocks in at well below two minutes — the punk-driven number is resonant long after it whirs to a stop. ”Breakdance on Broken Glass’ is about the kind of stuff older kids would tell me when I was younger about growing up,’ says drummer Luke Perine. ‘Their advice, for better or for worse, definitely made you learn something.’ ” — SPIN (via Pitchfork)

10) Amps for Christ, Canyons Cars and Crows. “While the project, steered by [Henry] Barnes (Man Is the Bastard, Bastard Noise), delivered few split efforts in recent years (including one with Woods), this upcoming full-length is described as a ‘proper resurrection for Amps for Christ.’ The album was recorded at Equation Road studio in Pomona, CA, and it apparently finds Amps for Christ traversing ‘familiar territories’ with a blend of Appalachian folk, hardcore, guitar noise and more.” — Exclaim! (via Pitchfork)