Monday, April 26, 2010

Preview of May's Best

2010 is already turning out to be one of the best years for music in a while. So far, the year has already seen releases by Beach House, Eels, Four Tet, Corinne Bailey Rae, Spoon, She & Him, Surfer Blood, Vampire Weekend, The Soft Pack, Yeasayer, Frightened Rabbit, and Gorillaz. That's just to name a few; some expected and some not. Even with all those names, May is shaping up to be a HUGE month (and we haven't closed out April yet). A few of which are detailed below.

May 4th

The New Pornographers - Together (Matador)

In the past, I've professed my affection for Neko Case in no uncertain terms. These feelings do not just encompass her solo work. No. Make no mistake, The New Pornographers also hold a special place in my heart, and they would be sorely lost without their songstress. On their anticipated new album they deliver some of their best songs to date.

Josh Ritter - So Runs The World Away (Pytheas)

Josh Ritter has been evolving for the last number of years from little-known indie/folk troubadour to what some critics call a modern hybrid of Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash. I tend to stay away from such hyperbole, but there are few artists that produce enough quality music to back up that type of hype as Ritter does. It's taken three years for his next studio album to come out, and while it has a more mature feeling to it, the music feels like a natural evolution of an artist at or near the top of their game. All the elements fans fell in love with from The Animal Years and The Historical Conquests are combined and refined to create his newest effort.

Broken Social Scene - Forgiveness Rock Record (Arts & Crafts)

Maybe one of the best groups making music today, it's sometimes a challenge to get all the integral members together to record a new studio album (since most of them now have solo careers), but when they This new album is really a pleasure from front to back.

Meet Me In The Basement (and on this track they don't need to sing to be pretty epic)

May 11th

Gayngs - Relayted (Jagjaguwar)

I really don't know how to classify this group or album. So I'll steal this from AMG: "Atmospheric, 69 bpm-obsessed dance-pop collective Gayngs craft impeccably rendered, R&B-infused electro-indie pop" with 25 different performers across the album, you'd think it would be disjointed or make no "sense" whatsoever, but somehow they pull it off. It's definitely an album that begs to be listened to multiple times, with each listen being a new discovery.

May 18th

LCD Soundsystem - This Is Happening (Virgin)

This is probably the album everyone has been waiting for (outside of The National's new one). Maybe James Murphy's biggest musical success to date; growing from self-titled through Sounds of Silver. It's unfortunate that this will be his last under the LCD pseudonym, but it's always best to go out on top. There's really only one "radio-friendly" cut (in terms of length) on this album and it's "Drunk Girls"...which is probably why it's the lead single. But, dear lord, just listen to the first track and you know you're in for a good time. I know it starts slow/boring, but wait until around the 3-minute mark. At which point you'll probably have to pick up your brains from the floor since your mind will have been blown.

The Black Keys - Brothers (Nonesuch)

My favorite blues-rock duo from Ohio is back with a more focused album than Attack & Release. Only one track on this new album is produced by Danger Mouse. I consider this a good thing. The best part about The Black Keys is their raw energy and blues influences. Danger Mouse seemed to remove a small part of that, which is thankfully back in force on this new album.

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