Review: It's logical for Throwing Muses to re-release their startling, first-in-ten-years 2013 album Purgatory / Paradise right now. And it has nothing to do with the record's seventh anniversary. Until September's 'Sun Racket' arrived, this was the alternative rockers' most recent release and by all accounts the sprawling 32 track epic is among the finest Muses moments to date. So new fans will want to get properly acquainted, and vice versa.
The American alt-rock titans have a history stretching back to 1981, six years of inactivity around the millennium aside, but when it landed Purgatory / Paradise was only their ninth studio album. Think quality, not quantity in terms of discography - with this a case in point. Dense enough to lose yourself completely in, Kristin Hersh's effortless movements between wail and soft serenade, the jangling, hypnotic late-night guitar chords, groove-laden percussion and open-hearted tales of everyday characters are frankly incredible.
Review: Here's something to get Talking Heads fans salivating: a fresh EP featuring previously buried, unheard alternative versions and outtakes recorded during the sessions for the celebrated New York new wave band's 1979 album Fear of Music. The EP begins with the completely unheard 'Dancing For Money', a typically undulating, off-kilter chunk of post-punk eccentricity that seemingly never went beyond the demo stage, before offering up a riotous alternate mix of the noisy, guitar-laden stomper 'Life During Wartime'. Over on the flip you'll find notably different arrangements and recordings of 'Cities' and 'Mind'; the latter, with its juju style guitar sounds and languid rhythm section, is particularly good.