This guy’s got the right idea! Flying, head first, into the New Music Friday with no cares in the world. He’s not even looking ahead of himself, just listening to it all hit him in the brain. I suggest you do the same with the following.
National Reserve – Motel La Grange
Americana, classic rock, blues, honky-tonk, jam band… yep. All that. The Brooklyn boys are back with some of the best-written tunes coming out today. It’s piano-driven rock that could have been released thirty years ago as easily as today and shows that the band has no plans of slowing down. Brilliant.
Favorite tracks: “New Love” & “Other Side of Love”
Strung Out – Black Out the Sky
Wait, what? If, for some sick reason, you don’t know Strung Out, they’re a California punk rock band who’ve been around for about 30 years. They’re legends. This album, on the other hand, is not punk. By far the biggest surprise of the week because, not only is it acoustic, it’s melody-driven rock ‘n’ roll. And it’s incredible. They took a massssssive risk on this one, and it paid off. This is going into the daily go-to rotation.
Favorite tracks: “The Architect” & “Town of Corazon”
Sevendust – All I See Is War
From track one, this is one of the best hard rock albums of the week. It hits hard at points, brings a nu-metal edge to others, and even a softness to it (at one point there’s even violin). It’s a gorgeous album and a welcome inclusion to the other eleven records they’ve got under their belt.
Favorite tracks: “God Bites His Tongue” & “Dirty”
Arctic Monkeys – Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino
If you’re looking for old school Arctic Monkeys, it’s not here. This isn’t “I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor” vintage, but that’s okay. The album is calmer, slower, and a bit less gritty than the past, maybe that’s why “Tranquility” is in the title. Across the board, it’s the same old Arctic Monkeys, just slowed down and a bit more loungey.
Favorite tracks: “Four Out Of Five” & “One Point Perspective”
illuminati hotties – Kiss Yr Frenemies
Incredible indie rock with a flow that’s insanely tight. The lyrics are more like short stories than traditional song lyrics guiding you through. But don’t worry, all of the hooks that you’re looking for are there. The songs range from fun rock to delicate singer/songwriter ballads.
Favorite tracks: “(You’re Better) Than Ever” & “Cuff”
The Sea and Cake – Any Day
Pared-down indie rock at its best. The flow across the ten tracks is beautiful and it sounds like it’s also somehow effortless. Slow, steady tunes just flow out of them with a warm and fuzzy feeling on every track. It’s perfect to chill out all weekend long with.
Favorite tracks: “Cover the Mountain” & “Any Day”
Jean-Michel Blais – Dans ma main
Is this the new “classical music”? Because if it is, I’d like to double down on it. This entire album is gorgeous. With fluttering piano, a pinch of samples, hardly any vocals, and just enough synths to keep any electronic fan happy, this is possibly the most powerful album of the week. It’s that good.
Favorite tracks: “blind” & “a heartbeat away”
La Luz – Floating Features
From track one, you know you’re getting into a fun, dark, surf rock flow. It feels like if The Doors, The Beach Boys, and The Cure had four baby girls, and they grew up and started making music. It’s fun, it’s rockin’, and you can dance to it.
Favorite tracks: “Cicada” & “Don’t Leave Me on the Earth”
Beach House – 7
The Baltimore duo is back with some impressive dream pop. For the most part, this is the album you want on to relax to, maybe light some candles, and have a nice lil’ night in with a few close friends. The whole album feels like a heat lamp to your ears from synths to vocals. Let it warm you up.
Favorite tracks: “Lemon Glow” & “Girl Of The Year”
BONUS SINGLE: lovelytheband – “these are my friends”
The newest release from the trio and probably the most positive of them so far. We already heard the EP, “everything i could never say…,” but while the same sadness is heard in this one, there’s a positivity that you can’t help but connect with. Embrace the sad and dance along.
See you in a week!