On the racks: August 22

Bachmann Hilton overdrive
By MATT ASHARE  |  August 23, 2006

The late J Dilla
After over a decade of hiding behind band names – first Archers of Loaf, who were a real band, and then Crooked Fingers, who really weren’t – Eric Bachmann has finally come out of the name-game closet to record his first album under his own name. It would be one thing if To the Races (Saddle Creek) were a significant departure from the four discs he’s put out as Crooked Fingers. Thankfully, though, it’s not: Bachmann remains one of the indie’s most accessible, poetic, and brilliantly broken outsider artists, and an Americana genius is right up there with the late Chris Whitley.

Punk rock taskmaster Bill Stevenson of Black Flag/Descendents notoriety is apparently so down-to-business that he got Evan Dando to make a decent Lemonheads album. In other words, anything’s possible when Bill’s in charge. So, who knows, maybe he’s taken the veteran NYC hardcore band the Casualties and turned them into something other than just another loud, fast, angry bunch of men pretending to be boys on their new Under Attack (Side One Dummy). After all, Stevenson is the man, and the Casualties have never been a bad band.

Sadly, beatmaker J Dilla passed away from complications arising from Lupus just days after the former A Tribe Called Quest production team member’s first real shot at solo commercial success – Donuts – was released back in February. But, given that he was a prolific beatmaker’s beatmaker who’s gotta have hundreds of unreleased tracks on the racks, we’ll probably be seeing new Dilla discs hitting shelves for years to come. The new one is The Shining (Bbe): don’t buy it if you haven’t already checked in on Donuts.

On the indie front, someone apparently didn’t check to see that everyone had new discs due on the 22nd. So we’ve got Slint star David Pajo doing his best Palace Brother haunted Americana as Pajo on 1968 (Drag City); confessional singer-songwriter John Darnielle reaching new peaks of somberness on the Mountain Goats new Get Lonely (4AD); Jon “Blues Explosion” Spencer hooking up with Luther and Cody Dickinson as Spencer Dickinson for some garage-punk jambanding on The Man Who Lives for Love (Yep-Roc); and yet another Broken Social Scenester, Stars singer Amy Millan going solo on Honey From the Tombs (Arts & Crafts). And that doesn’t even take into account Eric Bachmann’s new disc. Oh, well, we all know that the big gotta have disc of the week is sweet Paris Hilton’s Paris (Warner Bros.). . . or is it that new Lamb of God disc Sacrament (Epic). . .

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