Ty Segall delivers metal, acoustic blend on latest release

As a solo artist, with his band and his multiple side projects, Ty Segall is an incredibly prolific artist. (He landed two top 10 spots on my best albums of 2016 list.)

Despite the high output, there’s no sign of Segall phoning it in on his latest offering, a self-titled album.

As he’s done on some past releases, this record is a mix of heavy rock combined with easy acoustic numbers.

Here, Segall once again reaches into the vaults to draw from his familiar influences, notably Black Sabbath (Break a Guitar, The Only One) and T. Rex (Orange Color Queen, Talkin’). There’s also a healthy sampling of ’60s folk and psychedelia (Papers, Freedom).

Overall, it’s an interesting album with a few gems. As with some of his past offerings, it feels more like a collection of songs rather than a cohesive album. But that isn’t a knock. This one is recommended.

If you haven’t seen him play live, there’s good news. He’s touring.

Catch Ty Segall in Chicago. He plays Metro May 13 and Thalia Hall May 14.

Cherry Glazerr shreds on new album, plays Chicago

Last week, on the day Donald Trump was sworn in as 45th president of the United States, a wise-cracking 19-year-old named Clementine Creevy and her band Cherry Glazerr put out the most fierce rock album of the new year.

The album, Apocalipstick, isn’t the most political album you’ll hear in 2017, but it’s a distinct social commentary from a young L.A. woman, who started her band in high school and has already broken into film and TV. It’s a brash, young woman’s statement with guitars. It’s a Trump antidote.

This excellent band will be playing Saturday at Subterranean.

My friend Andersonville Dan and I recently gave the new Cherry Glazerr album a spin. After a Cherry Glazerr cassette release in 2013 and full-length debut album the following year, Apocalipstick, has a much more full, well-produced sound.

Me: I love the first song, Told You I’d Be With the Guys. It sets the tone for the album.

Dan: Yeah, I especially love how she emphasizes “guy-hyees.” I have to say some of the charm is lost in the bigger production, the bigger sound, as opposed to the more teenage raw feel of that demo and first album. But the lyrics are just as funny and endearing. The guitars on Moon Dust sold me. It’s a big rock record.

Me: I’m a big fan of the more polished production. These are great songs that sound bigger and better. This is definitely an album with a sense of humor, too. The band doesn’t take itself too seriously.

Dan: Yeah and they don’t pretend to be more than what they are. (She still sings about wearing underwear three days in a row.) It’s a fun record and a good start to the year. It’ll be an album to keep going back to.

Check out Told You I’d Be With the Guys below.

The best of garage 2016

Punk and garage figured prominently in my best albums of 2016 list (GØGGS, Ty Segall, Death Valley Girls, Nots, etc.).

Yet there are still so many great overlooked albums from bands that really rip.

Some of those albums were made and released in Chicago last year. Credit some local record labels and a growing number of bands.

Chicago’s Hozac Records continues to crank out great garage rock, including a frenetic dozen songs from the Sueves. Change Your Life is the 2016 debut from this Windy City band.

I’m also a fan of Leather Towel, an Australian garage super group featuring the lead singer of Ausmuteants. The band’s debut, IV, was released on Hozac. (Ausmuteants latest album, Band of the Future, is great, too.)

Tall Pat Records is another interesting Chicago label that is small but mighty. Check out late-year releases from Chicago bands, Swimsuit Addition (Killin’ Time) and Bleach Party (Endless Bender). Also recommended: A four-song release from Clearance (a Chicago band that sounds a lot like Pavement).

Chicago’s Radar Eyes made a very good psych-garage album, Radiant Remains, which was released by another local label, Under Road Records.

Elsewhere, Portland, Oregon, label Dirtnap Records turned out a slew of good albums this year, including releases from Low Culture (Places to Hide), Sonic Avenues (Disconnector), Bad Sports (Living With Secrets) and Mind Spiders (Prosthesis).

Mind Spiders

Detroit’s Tyvek put out the solid Origin of What, which was released on L.A.’s In the Red Records. (The label also released Ex-Cult’s excellent 2016 release, Negative Growth).