top of page

Capsule Reviews: Records Released on June 7 & 14, 2019

June 19, 2019 | by No Recess! Staff

Holy shitballs, there's a lotta great releases from the last two weeks.

June 7th Releases

Dinosaur Pile-Up

Celebrity Mansions


Grade: D-

Too clean, too bright, too precise, and containing all the worst elements from '90s alt-rock bands: big riffs, catchy choruses, and overly clever lyrics. The fourth record by this Leeds trio is disingenuous at best, a straight-up insult at its worst. I don’t know who will buy this, but it’ll probably do well since that '90s sound is big again. But look, just because you’re screaming the lyrics doesn’t mean you’re doing it right. Fug it. – Andrew K. Lau

Watch the video for "Back Foot" below, and buy Celebrity Mansions here

Jon Mueller



Grade: A

For those who’ve always wanted to fall into the heart of a 40" gong, now is your chance — Jon Mueller’s latest release, Canto, is an incredible journey into drones. Each of the three tracks approach the same idea from different angles, utilizing vocals and percussion into a hypnotic wet-wrap of sound. The louder you play Canto, the more results you get with dissonance. Is that the slow tug of your own heartbeat in your ears or is that the record? It doesn’t matter, just keep falling. – Andrew K. Lau

Watch a Jon Mueller video below and buy Canto here


Nighttime Stories

(Southern Lord)

Grade: A

If you’re angry and you know it... listen to this album. Six years of piecemealing Nighttime Stories together resulted in Pelican doubling down on an unrelenting, colder instrumental metal than some past efforts, though still utilizing those '90s hardcore leanings. Rare are the days now when I encounter a new metal album (of any variety) that doesn’t sound forged or phony. Pelican are so in command of whatever they make of "post metal" that last statement rings all the more true. Warmly received, a welcomed return — to put it short: This album rules. – Jocelyn Hoppa

Stream the entirety of Nighttime Stories below and buy the album here

Silversun Pickups

Widow’s Weeds

(New Machine)

Grade: D

Silversun Pickups are kind of known for tension-and-release exorcisms otherwise couched in shoegaze-y melodrama. Pop enough to reach radio listeners but with just the right amount of angst and indie rock credibility. What could go wrong? Widow's Weeds (with producer Butch Vig), the band’s first record in five years, is overproduced and underwhelming, the beloved edge absent — they sound like an altogether different (see: worse) band. This is what always goes wrong. Keep playing “Kissing Families” on repeat, and skip this record entirely. – Jocelyn Hoppa

Watch the video for "It Doesn't Matter Why" below and buy Widow's Weeds here

Grateful Dead

Aoxomoxoa (50th Anniversary Edition)


Grade: A

Another year, another Dead anniversary reissue. [yawn] One could be far more cynical about 'em if these weren’t so lovingly crafted. Two amazingly different mixes (from '69 and '71) each bringing out different elements to this humidity-soaked, burlap-wrapped batch of LSD hymns. The vinyl version of this reissue is on picture disc, a format notorious for its shitty sound, an ironic twist for a corporation known for their love of fidelity. The CD version has an extra disc of era-specific live tracks, which means no studio outtakes. Which means their most devastatingly bizarre an f’ed-up track, the nitrous oxide-fueled "Barbed Wire Whipping Party," remains too weird for even the Dead to officially acknowledge. Maybe next time. – Andrew K. Lau

Listen to Aoxomoxo below and buy the 50th anniversary release here.


June 14th Releases