“I love Coldplay!” Ryley Walker yells in the middle of a crowded bar in Chicago’s Logan Square neighborhood. “There, I said it.” It’s been a long journey to get to this point, but after years of disavowing his passion for bands like Coldplay, Switchfoot and DC Talk in order to pursue an identity as know-it-all indie rocker, the singer-songwriter has finally reconciled who he is today with the music he cherished growing up. “All I want to do right now is go back to the music I heard when I was fucking 15,” he says. “When I listen to it, it takes me back to a place where things were very simple and I was very happy.” At 29, Walker has already released five albums and three EPs. His breakthrough was 2015’s Primrose Green, a kaleidoscopic record that expertly combined Van Morrison–flavored soul-folk with sprawling, Chicago-style noise and jazz. With Deafman Glance, released in May, Walker zeroed in on a groovy … [Read more...] about Why Is a Chicago Indie Rocker Covering a Lost Dave Matthews Band LP?
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EDITOR’S PICK: Pistol Annies, Interstate Gospel“The ethos of the Pistol Annies, who steep their classicist country — rife with despair and misfortune — in rootsy arrangements, has not been welcomed within the mainstream confines of the genre in some time,” writes Jonathan Bernstein. “The Pistol Annies’ solution? Doubling down on the roots-blend they’ve honed over the better part of the past decade, merging Ashley Monroe’s East TN bluegrass roots, Angaleena Presley’s hardscrabble Kentucky country-rock and Miranda Lambert’s Texas honky-tonk. On paper, the Annies’ latest, like its predecessors, focuses on the type of small-town domestic drama the group has become known for. Their songs are populated by men and women struggling with prescription medication, marriage, mid-life crises, malaise and marijuana. But unlike past efforts, where the narratives were mostly distant character sketches and the messy … [Read more...] about 13 New Albums to Stream Now: Pistol Annies, Rosalía and More Editors’ Picks
The Rolling Stone Top 200 Albums chart is shaping up to be a tight and motley race next week as The Who and rising Compton rapper Roddy Ricch tussle for Number One, with pop star Camila Cabello close behind. The battle is not only one of genres and eras, but also methods of consumption: Who — their first studio album in 13 years — is selling big, while Ricch’s debut album Please Excuse Me for Being Antisocial is streaming by the millions. In Thursday’s daily edition of the RS 200, Who came in at Number One with 73,300 album units. So far, Who has seen over 71,000 sales, but just 527,000 streams. Please Excuse Me for Being Antisocial, meanwhile, had pulled in more than 75 millions by Thursday’s chart. But with fewer than 2,000 album sales, it wasn’t enough to top Who in the daily chart, coming in with 61,500 units. Camila Cabello’s second solo studio album, Romance, trailed at Number Three with 44,000 album units. The Rolling Stone 200 … [Read more...] about Can The Who Defeat Roddy Ricch for the Number One Album?
In the early 1970s, an insufferable drought left Southern California parched, with its inhabitants anxious to conserve water in any way possible. Many homeowners emptied their pools – giving rise to an unforeseen side effect: radical outlaw surfers turned low-riding cement lovers took to the curves and walls of these empty pools, creating an entirely new style of skateboarding. And so began the legacy of the Dogtown Z-Boys – Tony Alva, Stacy Peralta and Jay Adams – a daredevil group of sidewalk surfers who would come to represent a subculture, a new vernacular and the future of skateboarding. Forty years later, Dogtown denizen and longhaired hessian Josh Landau is out on the prowl, surmounting fences in the blighted neighborhoods of Los Angeles in search of empty pools to shred with his skateboarding brethren. The oppressive summer heat doesn’t vanquish their thirst for some tasty concrete waves and, whether they’re skating an abandoned pool in some Bel … [Read more...] about The Shrine: New Lords of Dogtown