Lynn Roberts of For Folk’s Sake fills us in on what’s been happening in her genre of expertise over the past month.
Festival season kicked off with the Great Escape last month in Brighton when everyone was talking about Django Django. Coming up this month there are tons of great line-ups with Beirut at Field Day, Lucy Rose at Rockness, Daughter at Bushstock and Patrick Wolf at Blissfields.
Mumford & Sons are ready to prove whether the hype’s been all for nought with their second album; they’ve just announced it’s coming out on 24th September. Their sometime collaborator Laura Marling has been talking about her next record too, but she’s on number four. Laura told Spin that she’s recording without a band for this one. Brilliant synth pop twosome Summer Camp are releasing new material too – a five-track EP ‘Always’ is coming out on 9 July.
Fans of Perfume Genius’s stark, sharp second album Put Your Back N 2 It should rush to the box office now to get tickets for his UK tour in August and September. And for those who like their music a little more straight down the line, Bon Iver has announced a European tour later this year.
There are rumblings a foot that good old Bob Dylan’s newest album is ready, and will be coming out in September. Dylan magazine Isis (yeah – he has a magazine about him, who doesn’t?) said the record includes a 14-minute song about the Titanic. Which sounds amazing.
Speaking of oldies, it’s 25 years since Paul Simon’s Graceland came out. The utter masterpiece, which features appearances from The Everly Brothers, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Linda Ronstadt and Youssou N’Dour, is getting a re-issue with a documentary and all sorts of special editions. More importantly, though, it gives us a good chance to talk about one of the best albums ever made.
Twenty-five years on, Graceland is still remarkable. The lyrics still pop with brilliant phrasing – “She looked me over and I guess she thought I was alright/Alright in a sort of a limited way for an off night” – they’re full of bittersweet honesty. And the music! Well, there’s nothing like it and probably never will be. Its African and folk influences blend so surprisingly.
From the quite old to the brand new, this month sees new releases from anachronistic Mississippi musician Dent May, normal-highted Swede The Tallest Man On Earth and former babysitter to Tom Waits’ kids, Jesca Hoop.
Also this month comes Class Clown Spots A UFO by Guided by Voices. Frontman Robert Pollard’s huge back catalogue really is worth exploring for cult classics galore. His intentionally underground band is gaining more and more traction with each release and soon it’ll be all they can do to avoid the mainstream.
Finally, Mary Epworth’s must hear debut album Dream Life will be released on June 18th. Blending psyche pop and and folk. First single ‘Black Doe’ has been getting attention from all over the place, and Dream Life marks her out as an immediate favourite.