Life just keeps happening and the new music keeps coming. The last few months have produced some noteworthy releases we think are worth your time. If you missed our best albums of the first 6 months of the year definitely give that list a look.
Whether you're situation we hope there's something here that suits your taste.
Angel Olsen returns with a stripped down variation of her majestic 2019 album All Mirrors. The songs are spare, but still feel electric.
Phil Elverum returns with an engrossing one-track album with expertly rich, layered lyricism and immersive production. Microphones in 2020 is a statement about creation, one with insights informed by the absurd, and whose absurdity is always insightful.
Capturing the unique nature of our universe has been a burden the hermetic Phil Elverum has labored over on many albums. At times, his words evoke the chimeric idea of nature, simultaneously rooted in physical forms yet transmitting an inner quality that he tries to root out in his songs.
This stellar remix collection of last year’s hyperpop instant classic 1000 gecs features an all star cast of guests, including Fall Out Boy, Charli XCX, Injury Reserve, and many others. This surreal project manages to arguably surpass the already outstanding originals, inverting and twisting lyrics to create zany blasted-out pop abominations that feel fresh while still maintaining the sugar and angst fueled thrashing that made 100 Gecs such a joy to discover the year prior. [Noah]
A ruminating appraisal of the life of a black man living in 2020.
Kelly Lee Owens find a delicate balance between art pop and emotionally charged techno. Inner Song is an atmospheric journey of celestial techno that floats between KLO's ethereal vocals and sonically rich dance tracks.
Hakim drenches neo-soul in reverb, dressing modern anxieties in sweet R&B and psychedelic fuzz. Compared to his 2017 debut Green Twins, this project has less form and takes a shape more difficult to define. Tracks like “BOUNCING” and “QADIR” unwind slowly as Hakim experiments and expands on his sound. [Wade]
Lianne Las Havas self-titled sophomore album sees the London artist evolving and pushing in new sonic directions while keeping her stunning voice front and center.incredible vocal performance takes center stage as she strays from the neo soul traditionalism of her first two albums, swapping in hypnotic guitar parts, mystical melodies, and even radiohead covers. [Alek]
An incredibly diverse and progressive pop rap album that sounds just like its album cover - lush, futuristic, and full of swagger. Tkay’s blend of everything from neo soul to funk to industrial hip hop and the seamless switching between each genre mood is masterful. On top of the banging beats and production Tkay spits ferociously and crafts catchy hooks when she's not rapping.
If a typical album can be compared to an art gallery, with each song being a different piece, then 7G is a whole museum. With a massive two hour and forty minute runtime, A.G. Cook’s debut album shows why his work as the head of the PC Music label has influenced the pop and electronic music landscapes for the better part of a decade. Although on subsequent listens I picked out my favourite discs to hear again, the whole album is captivating enough that a front to back listen doesn't feel like a slog. From the experimental “Supersaw” disc, the electropop “Extreme Vocals”, to the IDM heavy “Drums” disc there’s something here for everyone. [Liam]
Katie Dey eases up on her customary digital glitches and manipulated vocals for a warm record about the difficulty of forging intimacy through technology.
Everything about the presentation of this new record from Illuminati Hotties–from its status as a mixtape to its name–implies it is meant to be taken more as an interim before their real sophomore album. And yet, this may go down as one of the most memorable punk records of the year. Core member Sarah Tudzin takes the foundation of power-pop and plays with its boundaries with songs that are still fun and immediate.
An album that walks a delicate balance between experimentation and dance pop, with the occasional bout high energy juke and electro influences.
SUGAREGG roars from the speakers and jumpstarts both heart and mind. Like My Bloody Valentine after three double espressos.
Troye Sivan shows real potential in drifting towards a more experimental, lusty art pop sound with In A Dream.
A powerful debut from the 20-year-old British singer-songwriter.