Wednesday Dec 13
Apr
29/14
April 2014 Album Releases

As April ends and May moves in, Spring is in full blossom, and new music especially has especially bloomed. April has delivered a ton of highly anticipated records, many from artists who have not put an album out in years. All-in-all The Pier has 20 excellent new releases to discuss this month!

With new releases based around two holidays, Earth Day and 4/20, a flood of new music has hit the market. Record Store Day on 4/19 also added fuel to the fire this month. The annual event creates awareness for independent record stores, artists, and physical albums with special vinyl, CDs and various promotional products, made exclusively to be released that day, by hundreds of artists in the United States and in various countries across the globe. This year provided a bunch of excellent limited releases, as well as vinyl-first releases of several beloved albums like 311’s self-titled Blue album.

[Related: National Record Store Day: 4/21/2013]

Besides all the full-releases, many artist have dropped singles through out April. To list a few check out Tatanka’s ”Reward Them,” Matisyahu’s “Confidence” featuring Collie Buddz, “Switch” with Luciano and Anthony Que and a new single by Ky-mani Marley dropped on 4/20, aptly titled ”Get High.” Check out that track on Soundcloud.

Dropping at the end of April were two more singles! Making its worldwide premier on DC101, SOJA released ” I Believe.” The first sampling of the band’s highly anticipated forthcoming record, the collaborative track features Michael Franti as well as Nahko. On the opposite coast via San Diego’s 91X, Tribal Seeds dropped their single “Fill It Up,” a track featuring Gonzo and New Kingston. Earlier this month Tribal Seeds revealed all the details for their upcoming record, Representing, along with the track “Blood Clot.” Featuring the legendary Don Carlos, the track is available as an instant download by preordering the new record.

Also, Gary “Dread” Jackson of the The Movement has released a new mixtape. Recording a handful of songs from some old Foundation Reggae riddims, Jackson created the piece in honor of “all of the pioneers that paved the way for all forthcoming generations.” Titled Old Skool Come Again, check out the mixtape by heading to Soundcloud.

If there are any albums we missed, drop them in the comments below or on our Facebook or Twitter.




Check out the album releases from prior months:

  • January 2014 Album Releases
  • February 2014 Album Releases
  • March 2014 Album Releases

  • April 2014 Album Releases



    Sun-Dried Vibes –Back2Square1
    Release Date: April 8th
    sdv cover

    Since the release of their debut album in 2011, the Vibes have been making quite a name for themselves in the Reggae-Rock community. Now Sun-Dried Vibes have released their second full-length album, Back2Square1. The 12-track album features collaborations from many Reggae artists in the Carolina’s including Jeremy Anderson of TreeHouse!, John Bowling former keys player of The Movement, Cameron Brown of Good Nature, Dexter Jenks from South Street and singer/songwriters Tyler Boone & The Dubber. The album was recorded in Charleston, SC at Ocean Industries Studios, owned by bassist Mark Bass of rock group Shinedown. B2S1 was produced by Jeff Leonard Jr. mixed by Eric Rickert and was mastered by Micheal White of San Diego, CA

    Sample the album by checking out this YouTube playlist.

    You can pick up Back2Square1 on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!





    Various Artists –HI-Grade Ganja Anthems Vol 4
    Release Date: April 15th
    Hi Grade Ganja Anthems 4 cover

    VP Records, in conjunction with Greensleeves Records, are linking up once again to deliver another volume of Hi-Grade Ganja Anthems! This compilation is composed of 18-tracks featuring the biggest weed hits done by today’s hottest and upcoming artists in the reggae scene.

    Volume 4 comes to us 4 years after the previous release. Just as the other volumes, the most recent collection has a solid lineup consisting of reggae acts from all over the world. Jamaica is well represented on the compilation by artists such as Busy Signal, Horace Andy, and I-Octane, to name a few. American artists include Snoop Lion, Jamaican born, Boston-based, Mighty Mystic and Collie Buddz from Bermuda.

    Alborosie of Italy, and New Zealand’s Katchafire also make an appearance throughout the 18 tracks. The mission behind the Hi-Grade Ganja Anthems is to provide an irie mix of music provided by an all-star lineup of reggae artists who “rally together for the international movement and advocacy for marijuana use.”

    Read more about the album by clicking HERE!

    Sample the album by heading to Soundcloud.

    You can pick up HI-Grade Ganja Anthems Vol 4 on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!





    Ziggy Marley –Fly Rasta
    Release Date: April 15th
    Fly Rasta

    Ziggy Marley, the oldest Marley son, has won several Grammys for his albums, and even produced an album of children’s songs. Now, Ziggy has dropped his brand new solo album, titled Fly Rasta. The record was released on the Tuff Gong Worldwide label, around since Bob Marley’s vision in 1965 of producing, distributing, and promoting his music without the interference of corporate politics. With decades of experience behind him, this will be Ziggy’s third solo studio album, produced with the help of Dave Cooley, J Dilla, and the Silversun Pickups.

    The album will include 10-tracks featuring U-Roy as well as The Melody Makers including Cedella Marley, Sharon Marley, and Rica Newell. With catchy tracks like “I Don’t Wanna Live On Mars” and the title track “Fly Rasta” the record is not surprisingly on top of Billboard’s Reggae chart.

    Read more about the album by clicking HERE!

    Read The Pier’s Exclusive Interview with Ziggy Marley HERE!

    You can pick up Fly Rasta on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!





    Sizzla –Radical
    Release Date: April 15th
    Sizzla Radical cover

    Following the release of his 70th Album The Messiah, on April 15th roots reggae and dancehall veteran, Sizzla, released another brand new album. Titled “Radical” and released under VP Records the album will feature a collection of rare, unreleased material from Sizzla’s earlier days.

    Containing rare recordings from the Xterminator label sessions, Radical is composed of 16 tracks that were originally produced by Philip Fattis Burrell in the 90’s and early 2000’s. Fattis, who has since passed away, was crucial in helping Sizzla create some of his best work to date. Most notably, this includes 1997’s “Praise Ye Jah,” which is now widely considered to be Sizzla’s breakthrough album and one of the most influential conscious reggae albums of its’ time.

    Read more about the album by clicking HERE!

    Sample the album by heading to Soundcloud.

    You can pick up Radical on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!





    Pressure –The Sound
    Release Date: April 15th
    The Sound cover

    Conscious reggae artist Pressure has teamed up with I Grade Records and Grammy-nominated roots producers Zion I Kings for the April 15th release of Pressure’s 4th studio album, The Sound. A majority of the album’s 14-tracks were recorded in St. Croix at Aqua Sounds Stuio, with additional recording at the world famous Tuff Gong Studio in Jamaica. Mixed by I Grade Producer, Laurent, “Tippy I” Alfred, The Sound delivers diverse Roots-Reggae production and heartfelt songwriting.

    Additionally, a host of guest appearances light up the album with spots by one of the leading artists of the Jamaican dancehall scene, Lutan Fyah on “Stop This Train”, and also Ras Batch & NiyoRah on “Cry For Humanity”, Volcano on “Herbsman Town” and Midnite on the track “Nothing No Wrong”.

    Sample the album by heading to Soundcloud.

    You can pick up The Sound on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!





    Perfect Giddimani –Better Off Dread
    Release Date: April 15th
    Perfect Better off Dread

    Released via Jah Youth Productions, April 15th delivers Better Off Dread the ninth studio album from Perfect Giddimani. This latest release contains 14-tracks, alternating around such influences as roots Reggae, Dancehall, Rock and Hip-hop. The album also features several guests. On “Revolution Come” Lutan Fyah is featured along with Guyana’s Jahdan Blakkamoore, also the track “Hail the King” includes Brazilian singer Dada Yute. Be sure to stay tuned to Perfect Giddimania as he is expeting to release another album this fall.

    Sample the album by heading to Soundcloud.

    You can pick up The Sound on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!








    Mike Love –Jah Will Never Leave I Alone
    Release Date: April 15th
    Mike Love

    On Tuesday April 15th Oahu, Hawaii’s Mike Love released a project that has been in the works for the past four years. Titled Jah Will Never Leave I Alone the album ‘s 13-tracks were a collaborative effort with Love’s braddah, Jah Gumby, a musician that was Love’s main inspiration as he was coming up in the scene. Recorded at Father Psalms Studio the record is purely a Roots-Reggae record with some Jazz and Fusion influences. Love notes the experience saying, “I still feel amazed about the opportunities I’ve had to make music with him and so many other influential musicians. I can’t wait for you all to hear what we’ve come up with together!”

    You can pick up Jah Will Never Leave I Alone on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!








    Fortunate Youth – Dub Collections Vol. 1
    Release Date: April 20th
    FY Dub Collections vol1

    With a drop date set on April 21st, fans had the chance to officially download the as early as 9pm on 4/20/14. Fortunate Youth first started dubbing their tracks for the EP in late July before hitting the road on the Automatic Tour. Volume 1 of the Dub Collections features 6 tracks produced and recorded by Lewis Richards at 17th Street Recording Studio in Costa Mesa, California.

    According to Fortunate Youth’s keyboardist and bassist, Jered Draskovich, “We’ve always wanted to dub all our tracks and we finally just had some time to dub a few of them! We were just hanging with Lew in the studio and having fun! Can’t wait to get in there and do Vol. 2! We hope everyone enjoys the vibes.”

    Read more about the album by clicking HERE!

    You can pick up Dub Collections Vol. 1 on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!






    Arden Park Roots – Burning the Midnight Oil
    Release Date: April 20th
    APR BTMO

    Titled Burning the Midnight Oil, Arden Park Roots’ 4th full length album, after delay, finally released on April 20th. Originally mentioned in The Pier’s 2014 Most Anticipated Albums article, the band told The Pier that the album includes 11 new songs, along with a cover of “Jolene” originally written & performed by the band, Cake. The group recorded out of Pus Cavern in Sacramento, CA with producer, Joe Johnston. There’s one collaboration on the album with Legendary Bay Area rapper, Spice 1, who was featured on the song “The Music”.

    Read more about the album by clicking HERE!

    You can pick up Burning the Midnight Oil on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!








    Jah9 –For The Love Of Kush Mixtape
    Release Date: April 20th
    Jah9

    Released on April 20th, to coincide with the internationally recognized marijuana holiday, Jah9 made public her brand new mixtape titled, For The Love of Kush. With a focus on the cannabis plant and its many applications in aiding humanity towards sustainable development, this mixtape will take listeners on an educational journey of the plant and “its role in our lives at the psychoactive, nutritional, spiritual and industrial levels.” To help curate this educational journey, Jah9 recruited a lecturer from the University of the West Indies, Mona, Dr. K’adamawe K’nife. To make the reasoning seep easily into the mind of the listeners, Kingston Dub Club resident DJ, Gabre Selassie was selected to spin some herb-infused dub and roots tracks.

    This audible cannabis journey takes listeners a mere one hour and two minutes to complete, but will leave listeners with priceless information that doesn’t just advocate for cannabis legalization, but rather offers unbiased logic regarding the usefulness of this controversial herb. This information is all the more timely, as all across the world cannabis legalization or decriminalization seems inevitable.

    You can pick up For The Love Of Kush on Dropbox now, by clicking HERE!






    Dale and the ZDubs – Clear the Smoke
    Release Date: April 20th
    Dale and the ZDubs Clear the Smoke cover

    On April 20th, 2014, Dale and the ZDubs released their sophomore LP Clear the Smoke. For their latest release, the group really honed in on their Reggae-Rock tone. As explained by DZD, “our song writing has grown compositionally, instrumentally, and lyrically, and we are so excited to have captured it on this record.”

    It was produced and mixed by Jim Ebert, and engineered by Sean Russell at Cue Recording Studio in Falls Church, VA, and mastered by Brad Blackwood at Euphonic Masters in Memphis, TN. The 10 tracks of this album are FREE to download as DZD just wants their fans to enjoy it and spread the music.

    You can pick up Clear the Smoke on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!







    Big Sam’s Funky Nation – Evolution
    Release Date: April 21st
    bsfn evolution

    Led by trombone powerhouse, Big Sam Williams, formerly the trombonist for the Dirty Dozen Brass Band, and backed by The Funky Nation, a stellar group of world-class musicians, Big Sam’s Funky Nation is back with their first full length studio release since 2010’s King Of The Party. Released just in time for Jazz Fest, BSFN’s 5th full-length album, titled Evolution debuted at #7 on the iTunes Jazz Charts. The 11 tracks of Evolution keep true to its title, proving to be the next level in the development of funk with the distinctive and recognizable “NOLAdelic” stamp of Big Sam’s Funky Nation.

    You can pick up Evolution on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!









    Fishbone – Intrinsically Intertwined
    Release Date: April 22nd
    Fishbone Cover

    Celebrating 25 groundbreaking years, Fishbone has been trailblazing their way through the history of American Ska, Funk, Punk, Rock. Since starting their professional career in the flourishing, Alternative Rock music scene of the mid-1980s, Fishbone still continues to tour all over the world, turning heads at some of the most noteworthy festivals. The band is still composing, creating, recording, releasing and performing original music together as well.

    On April 22nd, just in time for their appearance at Coachella, LA’s Fishbone via Controlled Substance Sound Labs released a new EP titled Intrinsically Intertwined. Recorded in San Francisco at Hyde Street Studios the release features 5 original tracks. There is also a remix of the EP’s fifth song, “Whipper Snapper” available as a separate single.

    If the cover art for this EP seems familiar, its because the artwork was designed by Anthony Ausgang, the artist who did the award winning cover art for MGMT’s 2010 release Congratulations. For the new Fishbone EP, Ausgang once again used his trademark psychedelic cartoon cats, though for this piece creating ‘intertwining’ imagery mirroring and stretching the image on the cats nose, a focal point of the piece.

    Sample the album by heading to Soundcloud.

    You can pick up Intrinsically Intertwined on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!





    G. Love & Special Sauce –Sugar
    Release Date: April 22nd
    glass sugar

    Back in the early ‘90s, while playing the streets and bars of Boston’s music scene, a group of musicians came together, forming a band whose music stays in constant demanded from coast to coast. Now, 20 years later that ensemble, known by many as G. Love and Special Sauce, is once again touring as the original trio and recording new music together for the first time in eight years.

    On the year that marks the 20th anniversary of their debut and eponymously titled album, G. Love & Special Sauce will be releasing a brand new LP, titled Sugar. The record takes the “rich, warm” essence of the trio’s classic 1994 album and lays on top a modern composition of sounds, a blend of bits from G. Love’s past records and the relentless energy that pours out of the band’s live sets. Sounds that range from the Bluesy-Folk of his last record, 2011’s Avett Brothers produced Fixin’ to Die, to the gritty Hip-Hop Blues of that original record, a sound G. Love describes as “Live and raw, Down and Dirty.”

    On Sugar we hear the product of G. Love and many of the influential musicians from throughout his career. Along with the return of upright bassist James “Jimi Jazz” Prescott, the record features the groups longtime touring keyboardist, Mark Boyce, laying it down on B3 organ. Adding some extra sauce, on Sugar are some very talented guests, including legendary artist, background vocalist and current Oscar nominee Merry Clayton. Some of her most note worthy tracks are iconic hits like The Rolling Stones’, “Gimme Shelter,” Lynrd Skynard’s, “Sweet Home Alabama.” Clayton was even in Ray Charles’ band as a Raylette when she was just 18 years old. Also featured on Sugar are Los Lobos’ guitarist David Hidalgo, Eric Krasno of Soulive, Marc Broussard, Shamarr Allen, Kristy Lee, and several others.

    Recorded primarily at the studio of G. Love’s old friend and collaborator, Jack Johnson’s, Solar Powered Plastic Plant, Brushfire Records, Sugar was produced by legendary producers Mario Caldato and Robert Carranza. The men behind the boards on many of the Beastie Boys’ records.

    Jack Johnson seems to have summed up Sugar well saying “Ever since I heard the song ‘The Things That I Used To Do’ G. Love and Special Sauce have been one of my favorite bands. I don’t know anybody that likes to write, jam, or record more than G. Love. This new album ‘Sugar’ captures that joy in the music that got me hooked on G. Love the 1st time around.”

    You can pick up Sugar on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!






    Jack Johnson –From Here To Now To You Live – EP
    Release Date: April 22nd
    Jack Johnson EP

    Speaking of Jack Johnson, following last September’s release of his latest LP From Here To Now To You, Jack has released “From Here To Now To You Live EP.” The release features six tracks off that record including, “As I Was Saying,” ”Washing Dishes,” ”Don’t Believe A Thing I Say,” ”Shot Reverse Shot.” “Tape Deck” and “Home.” These songs were recorded live, last fall, on Jack’s From Here To Now To You theater tour, where Johnson and his great band treated fans to intimate performances at some of the world’s most renown music theaters. To celebrate Earth Day all, the proceeds from this EP will be donated to the Kokua Hawaii Foundation to support environmental education in the schools and communities in Jacks beautiful home state of Hawai’i.

    You can pick up From Here To Now To You Live on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!








    Christos DC –Long Road
    Release Date: April 22nd
    ccdc2 front

    On April 22nd, Christos DC‘s new album Long Road became available. The record, includes 14 new tracks produced and written by Christos DC at hisHonest Music Studios. The record was mixed by Frank Marchand at Annapolis, Maryland’s Hudson Street Sound and mastered by Thomas Blondet in DC at Rhythm & Culture Studios.

    Long Road also features several guest artists. On the albums first track, “Just Talk To Me,” sitting in is Kenyatta Hillm the lead singer from the legendary Jamaican trio, Culture and also son of the late great Joseph Hill, the founder of the group. Appearing on the track “Vasilikos”, is Anastasias Vrenios, and Hugh Hall on the record’s sixth track, “Circles.”

    Sample the album by heading to Soundcloud.

    You can pick up Long Road on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!






    Dubmatrix – In Dub
    Release Date: April 25th
    Dubmatix

    Canadian composer, producer & multi-instrumentalist, Dubmatix, has kept busy recently. Among working on a large diversity of projects in and out of the studio, the artist continues to cater to an international fan base, touring all throughout Europe, as well as Mexico. When home in Toronto, Dubmatix also hosts Bassment Sessions, a two-hour radio show, weekly on CIUT, as well as a bi-weekly Reggae show that is syndicated in the UK, France & Germany.

    This Dubmatix celebrates 10 years as a Reggae producer. Its also the 10th anniversary of Dubmatix’s 2004′ debut release, Champion Sound Clash. Following records released in 2009, ‘10, ‘11, all featuring an array of illustrious guests, as well as Canada’s #1 Reggae release, 2013’s Rebel Massive, this month, Dubmatix dropped “In Dub” on April 25th via Echo Beach. The record included 12 pounding dub-tracks that merge seamlessly into each other.

    After years of experimenting, Dubmatix has honed in on a unique signature sound and style, utilizing heavy bass, full horn lines and thick-set percussive grooves. According to the artist, ”the new record dives back into the pure dub tradition, utilizing the narcotic intensity of echo/delay, reverb soaked ambiance and heavy bass low end.”

    You can pick up In Dub on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!






    String Cheese Incident – Song in My Head
    Release Date: April 29th
    SCI Song In My Head

    Fusing Newgrass with Rock, Jazz, Calypso, Reggae, electronic elements and a variety of many other musical genres, this month, the Colorado Jam ensemble known as The String Cheese Incident releases their ninth studio record, titled Song in My Head. Out April 29th on the groups own SCI Fidelity Records and Loud & Proud Records, the record was produced by Jerry Harrison, keyboardist of the Talking Heads. Collaboratively written by the group over the past decade, within Song In My Head are 10 songs that have been heard embedded in the live sets over the past few years.

    Known for their live “Incidents” that garner a loving following of fans, for a band like SCI, with their musical chops and skilled cohesive instrumentation, it’s remarkable that after 20 years of music, the band’s ninth album, and first studio album in nine years, would really demonstrate their signature sound. After years away from the studio, performing live both together and in many of the band members side projects, SCI has finally tapped into the proficiency that two decades’ worth of performing develops. The groups drummer, Michael Travis, explains, “Stylistically, the album feels like the most modern expression of our music. We continue to be the newest version of our expanding stylistic interest. This album feels more genuinely us. It’s everything we’ve learned about making an album.”

    You can pick up Song in My Head on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!






    Pixies – Indie Cindy
    Release Date: April 29th
    Pixies

    Forming during ’86 in Boston, the Pixies have been a huge influence for many bands, particularly on the explosive ‘90’s alternative rock scene, iconic bands like Nirvana, Radiohead and The Strokes. Following a hiatus that lasted over a decade, in 2004 the band reformed and has been actively touring over the past ten years. In June of last year, co-founder & bassist-vocalist Kim Deal officially departed from the band. Shortly after, The Pixies released their first new track in over a decade, followed by their second EP released in January.

    Now after much anticipation, the band has put out a new record titled Indie Cindy, the first album from the band in 23 years. For this album, frontman Black Francis, guitarist Joey Santiago, drummer David Lovering along with bassist Simon ‘Ding’ Archer sitting in on the session, re-tracked 13 songs from the groups past three EPs. Recorded at Rockfield Studios in Wales, for this record, the band rejoined with their infamous producer, Gil Norton, working with him for their first album in almost 25 years. As done for past Pixies records, the cover art was created by Vaughan Oliver, a British graphic designer known for work with 4AD Records, and an influence on the look of Post-Punk music.

    You can pick up Indie Cindy on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!






    The Lambsbread – Bring Them Together
    Release Date: April 29th
    the Lambsbread

    Known for its splendor and beauty, as well as its music and culture, out of the Hawaiian Islands has flowed many musical acts. One band that has been producing Reggae music on the island since 2003 is The Lambsbread. Featuring singer songwriters Kaya and Nadia and supported by a team of some of the top Reggae musicians in Hawaii, the band continues to build their discography, completing their fourth record release. Titled Bring them Together, the album including singles such as “Live It Up Again” and “Stand Firm” featuring Prezident Brown. Composed of 14 tracks, The Lambsbread also collaborated with Perfect, Fanton Mojah, Ras Lil Dread and Rastar. The new record is available on the 29th of April via Jah Youth ProductionsRumble Rock Records.

    You can pick up Bring Them Together on iTunes now, by clicking HERE!





    Article By: Aaron Solomon


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