Hot New Tracks From Charles Bradley, Fujiya & Miyagi, and More

Mother Jones critic Jon Young dissects four albums by the song.


TRACK 12

“Heartaches and Pain”

from Charles Bradley’s No Time for Dreaming (Daptone)

Liner notes: The searing ballad that closes this stunning debut recalls the bleak moment when the singer’s brother was shot and killed by his nephew.

Behind the music: Part of the new wave of gifted soul revivalists affiliated with Brooklyn’s Daptone Records (home of Sharon Jones), Bradley took a roundabout route to his first album. Born in 1948, he pursued music on the side for decades, while he worked as a chef.

Check it out if you like: Gritty R&B shouters, including James Brown, Wilson Pickett, and Dyke & the Blazers’ Arlester Christian, of “Funky Broadway” fame.


TRACK 5

“Yo Yo”

from Fujiya & Miyagi’s Ventriloquizzing (Yep Roc)

Liner notes: His monotone oozing cool disdain, David Best murmurs, “You change your mind when the wind blows…You know even less than you think you know,” as old-school synths pump out a casually funky groove.

Behind the music: Though you might think Fujiya & Miyagi are a Japanese duo, the quartet’s name comes from an obscure brand of audio equipment and the “wax on, wax off” teacher of The Karate Kid.

Check it out if you like: Krautrock (Neu!), synth-pop pioneers (Devo), and more recent electronica (LCD Soundsystem).


TRACK 11

“Understruggle; Yay, Win”

from Ben + Vesper’s Honors (Sounds Familyre)

Liner notes: Nudged by gentle banjo and mandolin, New Jersey spouses Ben and Vesper Stamper intertwine their lazy voices in musings on everything from a missing shirt to the nature of destiny, creating the feeling of hanging out with friends on a sleepy afternoon.

Behind the music: Vesper Stamper is named after Casino Royale Bond girl Vesper Lynd.

Check it out if you like: Sufjan Stevens, the Handsome Family (another married duo), Mountain Man, and others who bring idiosyncratic twists to familiar folk conventions.


TRACK 9

“The Cracks in the Walls”

from Broken Records’ Let Me Come Home (4AD)

Liner notes: “Never calm me down, I want to feel my heart is bursting out,” exclaims Jamie Sutherland with fidgety fervor, as thundering drums, jangling guitars, and mournful violin create a thrilling sense of apocalyptic drama.

Behind the music: Sutherland says the Edinburgh sextet’s second outing drew inspiration from Bruce Springsteen’s Nebraska and landmark films like Badlands and East of Eden. The album’s initial recording sessions took place in an old distillery grain store in the Scottish highlands.

Check it out if you like: U2, Arcade Fire, and Jeff Buckley, all masters at depicting personal passions on epic canvases.

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

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