Hello new music lovers. Welcome to NEXT. We have a simple goal: Find you a NEXT, new favorite song. #NextFavoriteSong

Let us begin NEXT week 752 with Kurt Vile and John Prine. A damn fine way to start a show. With a damn fine duet. Kurt Vile’s Speed, Sound, Lonely KV (ep) was recorded and mixed in sporadic sessions that spanned four years at The Butcher Shoppe studio in Nashville, TN. It includes five songs — covers of John Prine and “Cowboy” Jack Clement as well as two originals — and was recorded alongside a cast of local heavies like Bobby Wood, Dave Roe, and Kenny Malone with Dan Auerbach (The Black Keys) and Matt Sweeney (Chavez, Superwolf) tossed into the mix as well. Most importantly, it features what KV has called “Probably the single most special musical moment in my life” – a duet with the late John Prine on the songwriter’s well-loved tune, “How Lucky.” “The truth is John was my hero for a long time when he came into The Butcher Shoppe to recut one of his deepest classics with me. And, man, I was floating and flying and I couldn’t hear anything he told me while he was there till after he was gone for the night,” notes Vile in a personal statement that accompanies the record. “A couple nights later we were playing ‘How Lucky’ together again; this time onstage at the Grand Ole Opry on New Year’s Eve at the turn of 2020. Nothing like seeing John and his band of musical brothers and family and friends playing into the new decade in front of an adoring audience on that stage in Nashville, TN… and, yup, that’s just how lucky we all got that night.”

Low Cut Connie add a  jittery “Help Me”. It’s a plea for understanding at a time when compassion is running in short supply. “That’s me shooting straight from the hip,” says Weiner. “I just sorta opened up my brain for a quick second and spit this out. Listening back later, it feels very real.” Like much of the album, it’s an ode to the odd and the eccentric, to the alienated and the broken, and a daily search for liberation. The swaggering title track, which Rolling Stone called an “upbeat piano-rocker” and NPR Music’s Ann Powers called “The freak anthem we need right now.” The teaser from power-pop trailblazers The Posies, introducing their catchy new single “Sideways,” reads as follows: “Does it seem like the world is going sideways lately?  We know exactly how you feel.” “Sideways” is the first song released by the band in four years, and its pop freshness and dose of optimism feel like a tonic for these troubled times. To add yet another reason to be optimistic, The Posies teased that a new album is forthcoming in 2021. When released it will be the band’s ninth studio album to date and the follow-up to 2016’s Solid States. Along with the single release, the Posies also launched an official video for “Sideways” — in itself a rarity for this band. The song was written by Jon Auer, and the video was directed by Frankie Siragusa.

IDLES – A Hymn Ultra Mono pummelling riffs and desolate beauty. The Bristol punks return with more precision-tooled muscularity and a hint that they won’t be hidebound by genre. Everything Everything: “It’s like all these biblical plagues conflating at the same time, with us right in the middle”. After battling flash floods, a devastating fire, oh, and a global pandemic, the Manchester group’s new album finds them relinquishing songs pontificating of the wider world and burrowing deep in their own minds

The Rolling Stones (Live). Their first tour hitting the US since 1981, Steel Wheels was famously one of their longest, and most ambitious, setlists. 2 ½ hours deep, The Rolling Stones not only played their hits, but dared to roll out several new songs from the then-newly released Steel Wheels album. A highlight of this tour stop was the band being joined by special guests: Guns N’ Roses’ Axl Rose and Izzy Stradlin accompany the Stones for the first-ever live performance of “Salt Of The Earth”, from their 1968 Beggars Banquet album. Eric Clapton brings his slow blues burn to “Little Red Rooster”, and joins the Stones in backing up one of their idols, blues legend John Lee Hooker, on “Boogie Chillen”.

Ozzy Osbourne (Live). Ozzy Osbourne has announced an expanded edition of his debut solo album ‘Blizzard Of Ozz’ to mark its 40th anniversary. The record was originally released back in September 1980 and contains the tracks ‘Crazy Train’, ‘Mr. Crowley’ and ‘Suicide Solution’. The extended version of ‘Blizzard of Ozz’ will land on streaming platforms, boasting the bonus tracks ‘You Looking At Me, Looking At You’ (originally the B-side to ‘Crazy Train’), ‘Goodbye to Romance’ (2010 Guitar & Vocal Mix) and album outtake ‘RR’. Fans will also be able to hear seven live songs which were recorded during the ‘Blizzard Of Ozz’ tour, including rarity ‘You Said It All’, ‘Steal Away’ and ‘Revelation’. In addition to the expanded album, Osbourne will digitally release the live concert films Live & Loud (1993) and Live at Budokan (2002) originally avaliable on VHS/DVD and rarely found online.

Eddie Vedder has shared a new song, “Cartography,” as part of the Sub Pop Singles Club. The instrumental track is from the soundtrack to the Robert F. Kennedy documentary Return to Mount Kennedy, which Vedder scored. The new song is also joined by a remix from Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ Nick Zinner that features audio of Robert F. Kennedy responding to the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. All proceeds from the release will support the national voting rights organization Fair Fight. Listen to the song and remix below. “Listening to the speech delivered by Bobby Kennedy in regards to the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. 50 years ago, you are reminded that once again we are at a moment in time when our society can and must do better,” Eddie Vedder said in a press release. “Voting is our most powerful form of nonviolent protest.”

Birdthrower with “a goth-folk gem” – Rolling Stone Magazine. Birdthrower, aka Robert O Leaver, described the inspiration for this current single, “I very narrowly dodged a painkiller addiction a few years back. I had a bad reaction to some anti depressants that a doctor told me would “brighten” things and “raise the floor” He did not mention what would happen to the ceiling. When I told him I was having a bad reaction he gave me something for that too. On another occasion for a physical ailment I was given steroids, prednisone, and that made me feel some of the sensations I talk about in the song Medication. Rage, manic transcendence, grief and giddy paranoia. It alarmed my family.  I said the words…”we need to talk about my medication” to my wife after dinner one night. I was half joking, but quite serious. I knew right after I said it that it might be the first line of a song,” he said. “These days I try and just stick to a few Advil now and again. Clearly there is a lot of medication out there and everyone is on something, or trying to stay off something with the help of something else. The right medication can save your life. It comes in many forms. I’m just happy to have my pill jumpsuit.” “Medication”, along with the other 10 original songs, were produced by label founder Ben Harper and recorded in Silverlake in Los Angeles, California

Fleet Foxes are coming out with a fourth album. Singer-songwriter Robin Pecknold refines and hones Fleet Foxes’ crisp folk-rock sound, crafting another musically adventurous album that is warm and newly full of grace. Lucero says, “With ‘Among the Ghosts’ we went in just to see what the vibe would be like working with Matt and at Sam Phillips. We only booked a couple days, and it went well enough that we said, ‘I guess we’re making an album.’ We went into that process with nothing, hoping things would kind of materialize,” he says. “This time, though, we talked concepts and sounds a lot with Matt. We actually used our practice space in the Edge district, just down the street from Sam Phillips, to do some preproduction. So by the time we went in to Phillips in June, we had a real strong overall idea of the record. And we managed to finish up a full album and then some.” Stubblefield says the band hopes to release the album in early 2021 — and, like all musicians, they will be waiting to see if touring can resume next year. “A band like us, we pretty much do two things: We put out albums and tour,” Stubblefield says. “If we can’t do one, we got to do the other.”  

The Mountain Goats give us “a vintage bit of soulful rock & roll befitting the studio where the Mountain Goats recorded it: the legendary Sam Phillips Recording in Memphis, Tennessee” – Rolling Stone “full, adventurous, heady as ever” – Vulture Getting Into Knives highlight “Get Famous” compresses the Mountain Goats’ fervor into a backhanded benediction, a three-minute pop entreaty to reach for the stars. But frontman John Darnielle isn’t the type to wish fame on anyone. Instead, he sings the song’s title as if it were a curse. From John Darnielle: “If I told you all how much fun we had making this one you wouldn’t even believe me, but we hope it comes through.”

Liz Longley sounds great on her latest. “Her classic Americana and gospel influences shine…”- WXPN Funeral For My Past will arrive following Longley’s amicable split with her former label, Sugar Hill Records, and a wildly successful crowd-funding campaign that placed her as the fourth most-funded solo female musician ever on Kickstarter. Her deeply devoted fans contributed over $150,000 in order to help her purchase the rights to and promote Funeral For My Past, far surpassing the initial goal of $45,000. The elements of Longley’s demeanor that have helped foster such a connection with her fans show up throughout the album itself: it’s at times cozy and heartwarming, but with a bite that makes each track difficult to forget.

NEEDTOBREATHE’s new album “Out of Body” offers more than just background noise — it is a heartfelt storybook of songs that compensates for its lack of standout moments with an uplifting aura that only the most stubborn skeptic would frown upon. It’s  the first NEEDTOBREATHE album that does not feature Bo Rinehart, the younger brother of lead vocalist Bear.

Ghost Of Vroom are Mike Doughty and his longtime collaborator Andrew “Scrap” Livingston have started a new band called Ghost of Vroom. Their debut EP is entitled “Ghost of Vroom 2” and is a three song collection mixed and produced by Mario Caldato Jr. The songs are all very pertinent to 2020 with lyrical content related to the pandemic and police brutality. The first single “Rona Pollona” is out NOW! The full EP will be out 9/25. “Rona Pollona” boasts a laid back groove of shuffling drums, twisting guitar and lazy cello strokes, recalling the way A Tribe Called Quest flipped Lou Reed’s “Walk on the Wild Side” for “Can I Kick It?” The song finds Doughty transforming the ceaseless online scroll of the past few months into lyrical form, referencing Simpsons memes, cursing out Steve Mnuchin and alluding to President Donald Trump’s recommendation that drinking bleach could cure coronavirus (“Throw me in a sanitized SuperGulp cup”). – Rolling Stone

Music is Life. And new music keeps you young at heart. And keeps your mind nimble. It’s science. Do the google if you don’t believe me.

It was tough before Covid 19. Now more than ever we need to support these bands. Even something as simple as buying an album, or a ticket to a show (when live music comes back or if they are hosting online events), or a tee shirt. And if you can buy directly from them. Even better. Thank you.

Spotify playlist updates on Thursday(ish). Link to Chris Bro on Spotify.

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WARNING may contain bad words. Or may not. Depends.

You can listen to NEXT on the radio. Listen to NEXT on Ocean 98 in Maryland Sunday nights at 10. Or Saturday afternoon on VOBB in Canada

Artist and Song Title:

  • Kurt Vile and John Prine – How Lucky
  • Low Cut Connie – Help Me
  • The Posies – Sideways
  • IDLES – A Hymn
  • Everything Everything – Violent Sun
  • The Rolling Stones – Paint It Black (Live)
  • Ozzy Osbourne – You Said It All (Live)
  • Eddie Vedder – Cartography
  • Birdthrower – Medication
  • Fleet Foxes – Sunblind
  • Lucero – Time To Go Home
  • The Mountain Goats – Get Famous
  • Liz Longley – Finally High
  • NeedToBreathe – Bottom of a Heartbreak
  • Ghost Of Vroom – Rona Pollona

and remember if you love someone hug them right now

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