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Ralph ‘Soul’ Jackson has been an R&B singer for near-on 50 years, hailing from a part of the world where God-given soul talents seem to run in the waters. Jackson comes from Phenix City, Alabama, deep in the so-called “Black Belt” where music is an essential part of life. His first single released in 1965 after Rick Hall brought Jackson to Muscle Shoals to work in his FAME studios. Since then the singer has kept up his rigorous performing schedule, as he says “I grew up in the country, a hard working environment where your ass had to get out there and work.” Jackson became known as the Alabama Love Man for his special appeal to female music fans. “See, I may sing my songs from the gut but they come from my heart. I learned very early that women appreciate attention, I’m not singing for women, I sing to them.”
Prolific Canadian heavy metal band Cauldron return to action on the 8th of October 2012 with Tomorrow’s Lost, their third full-length album in fours years for Earache Records. To ramp up excitement levels ahead of its release, PopMatters is proud to host the exclusive premiere of the arena worthy anthem “Nitebreaker”, a headbanging highlight from the forthcoming album which sees Cauldron hone their songwriting, tighten their guitar attack, and fire-off the most memorable chorus of their career. Tomorrow’s Lost is a game changer and a must for fans of traditional metal/rock in the vein of Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Scorpions and Angel Witch. Check it out and wreck your neck!
Here’s a selection of new music off highly anticipated releases from indie strongholds Grizzly Bear and Animal Collective along with singles from upcoming releases from Tame Impala and Matt and Kim. New super group Divine Fits provided a strong entry of solid songs while David Byrne handpicked Annie Clark (a.k.a. St. Vincent) for another collaborative project. With so much new music out recently, a Late Fall New Music Playlist is already in the works—of course that’s never a bad thing.
The best sign of Marshall’s progress to know, to see where she’s come, may be in the music herself. This is just her playing, but this is the most deeply layered and intricate music of her career. You can feel lessons learned from the players on You Are Free and The Greatest and elsewhere, and those lessons give her the confidence to shift from the gauzy guitars of “Cherokee” to skronky blues of “Silent Machine” to ambient electro-pop of the title track to bright blippy keyboard sweetness of “Manhattan”.
—Matt Fiander, Cat Power: Sun review, 5 September