Music News: Bandcamp announces vinyl-pressing service

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Colored vinyl at a pressing plant in England, 2017.
Colored vinyl at a pressing plant in England, 2017. (Chris J Ratcliffe/Getty Images)
Bandcamp announces vinyl-pressing service
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Bandcamp is launching a new vinyl-pressing service, described by Engadget as "like Kickstarter for vinyl." Artists will be able to put vinyl records up for sale, but the albums won't be pressed and the buyers won't be charged unless the release sells a predetermined number of copies. That makes it risk-free for artists who might have been hesitant to press a bunch of records they'd be stuck with if they didn't sell.

The streaming service is responding to consumer demand: traditional sales of vinyl through the service have grown by 600% over the last five years, Bandcamp says. The new vinyl service is launching with select artists, with the aim of opening to all artists by the end of the year. Bandcamp opened its first brick-and-mortar record store this past February, in Oakland, California. (Jay)

This week's new releases

Lizzo: Cuz I Love You

The new album from Lizzo, Cuz I Love You, feels like a reintroduction to the powerhouse singer. The first full-length put out by Atlantic Records shows off all the sides of Lizzo: the broken-hearted ballad, the dance club banger, the sisterhood anthem, the cocky ode to loving yourself, a gospel number that will take you to the church of Lizzo, and a sexy slow jam for good measure. Every song is infused with Lizzo's high-voltage personality, making each song feel like a direct secret shared with the listener from a good friend. Lizzo is here for you and wants to make sure you know it. Like she says in "Juice," "If I'm shiny everybody's gonna shine too." (Jade)

Teen Spirit soundtrack

Until now, the Isle of Wight has been best-known to music fans for being namechecked in the Beatles' "When I'm Sixty-Four." That could change with a new movie hitting theaters this Friday. It stars Elle Fanning as a 17-year-old living on a struggling farm there when she gets the chance to audition for a reality TV singing competition. It's a classic underdog story, and writer-director Max Minghella knows that no one really cares about the plot as long as you nail the big moments. The movie includes a very apt musical nod to Flashdance.

The soundtrack, which is out now, also has Fanning and her costars covering songs by Owl City, Robyn, Sigrid, Ariana Grande, Annie Lennox, Ellie Goulding, and even the Undertones, whose 1978 nugget "Teenage Kicks" is played by a throwback band of clean-cut adolescents. My favorite musical moment, though, comes near the beginning of the movie, when Fanning takes the mic before a sparse audience at the karaoke bar where she works. With only a piano for backing, she sings Tegan and Sara's gorgeous ballad "I Was a Fool." (Jay)

Cage the Elephant, Social Cues

"Goodbye," "Ready to Let Go," "House of Glass" — if you haven't guessed by now, those song titles from Social Cues, the fifth Cage the Elephant album, promise a dark breakup album. Lead singer Matt Shultz just went through a divorce and feelings of anger, sadness, and bitterness wash over every song. It's glam rock in the minor keys. (Jade)

Jade Bird, Jade Bird

When David Bowie's producer says about a singer, "there's nothing she can't do," you know you'd better take a listen. More people than ever are going to be doing exactly that when English singer-songwriter Jade Bird releases her long-awaited self-titled debut album this week. She's already been playing sold-out shows on both sides of the Atlantic on the strength of her 2018 breakout single "Lottery," but her rich voice could reach the rafters of even larger venues, and no doubt it will.

Her sound, centered on her acoustic guitar and keening choruses, has been described as alt country, and you could definitely put her music on a mixtape with some of the more raucous offerings from Uncle Tupelo and the Jayhawks. Her polished sound comes roaring out of the radio, so you can get ready to hear tracks like her single "I Get No Joy" just about everywhere. (Jay)

Audio sampled in podcast
Jahzzar: "Comedie" (CC BY 4.0)
BoxCat Games: "Against The Wall" (CC BY 3.0)
Lizzo: "Juice"
Elle Fanning: "I Was A Fool"
Cage The Elephant: "Ready To Let Go"
Jade Bird: "I Get No Joy"
Beyonce: "Welcome" (Homecoming Live)
Beyonce: "Before I Let Go" (Homecoming Live)
Beyonce: "Crazy In Love" (Homecoming Live)

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