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The Riff Report: Key new music releases this week

• Trio Da Kali and Kronos Quartet – “Ladilikan”

Trio Da Kali and the Kronos Quartet feel like a match made in heaven, musical soulmates who found each other even thousands of miles away. It’s a melodic, fairytale union, and “Ladilikan” is the fruit of their collaborative labor: a sweet, soulful album that brings together old-time Malian sounds and contemporary classical strings. It’s a combination that just makes sense.

• Lizz Wright – “Grace”

For the new album “Grace,” Joe Henry collected about 70 songs for Lizz Wright to cover. She selected the ones she felt best mirrored her past and present state of consciousness. Wright took on well-known songs like “Stars Fell on Alabama” and “Southern Nights,” offered her versions of cuts by Bob Dylan and Ray Charles, went spiritual on Sister Rosetta Tharpe and Carol Jackson’s “Seems I’m Never Tired Lovin’ You” yet never lost continuity. Every song links to the others somehow.

• Ariel Pink – “Dedicated to Bobby Jameson”

• Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton — “Choir of the Mind”

• Foo Fighters – “Concrete and Gold”

• Gary Numan – “Savage (Songs From a Broken World)”

• Gucci Mane – “Mr. Davis”

• Hundred Waters – “Communicating”

• Kiran Leonard – “Derevaun Seraun”

• Lee Ranaldo – “Electric Trim”

• Ringo Starr – “Give More Love”

• Son Little – “New Magic”

• The Lone Bellow – “Walk Into a Storm”

• Wyclef Jean – “Carnival III: The Rise and Fall of a Refugee”

– Tribune News Service

NOW HEAR THIS (new tracks from up and coming artists)

Antwood — ‘Sponsored Content’

Tristan Douglas a.k.a. Antwood released one of last year’s most intriguing electronic albums, Virtuous.scr, which showed him to be a deep-thinking producer with immense compositional skill and imagination. Now, Antwood is back with his second record for Planet Mu. Sponsored Content takes a slightly more melodic approach and Antwood heavily edited his work to reduce any extraneous elements. The music is focused and lean with aural white space giving the songs space to breathe. Like Venetian Snares, Antwood is creating his own musical vocabulary. — Sarah Zupko


The Artisanals — “Not Giving Up/Pound the Rock”

Artisanals frontman Johnny Delaware is formerly of Susto, a South Carolina-based band quickly making a national name for itself. The Artisanals is very much in the same vein, crafting hooky, personal rock that’s an equal mix of indie and classic rock. Despite being a newly-minted band, they’ve already played shows with Band of Horses, Futurebirds, and Dylan Leblanc. “Not Giving Up/Pound the Rock” opens up their debut four-song EP, Literally, Anywhere, which hits shelves on Sept. 14. It’s an ambitious introduction to this batch of songs that are equal parts the Church, My Morning Jacket, the Eagles, Dawes, and Bruce Springsteen. — Andrew Gilstrap



Ryan Keberle and Catharsis -”Fool on a Hill”

Trombonist Ryan Keberle and his quintet Catharsis are one of the most versatile “jazz” groups in New York today. And not what you might expect. Featuring vocalist/guitarist Camila Meza, the band uses riveting contrapuntal arrangement for horns to frame songs that communicate directly. This new video is for Keberle’s take on the Beatles song “The Fool on the Hill” from the protest album, Find the Common, Shine a Light, released earlier this summer on Greenleaf Music. — Will Layman



(PopMatters is an international magazine of arts and culture. Find more PopMatters content at



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