The Antlers – Burst Apart
The Antlers’ third album, Hospice, got them a lot of attention (i.e., hype) about two years ago. So much so, that some were wondering how well they would be able to follow up that effort. That follow-up is here and early reviews are positive... well-deserved positive. The album is quiet, but strong, but definitely one of those that requires multiple listens.
"Putting the Dog to Sleep"
Streaming at NPR
Box Codax – Hellabuster
Box Codax is the side project of Franz Ferdinand’s guitarist, Nick McCarthy. Where Franz Ferdinand became known for an art-influenced (and somewhat kraut) indie rock, this band is quite experimental. The songs I’ve heard are very…very interesting.
Cat’s Eyes – Cat’s Eyes
I’ve become mildly obsessed with their song, “Face in the Crowd,” with its sixties-inspired sound. The album is out this week, showing an even broader sampling of sixties pop sounds. I’m fairly surprised something like this has come out of The Horrors, who are overall pretty dark (hence the name, I guess).
"I'm Not Stupid"
The Cars – Move Like This
This band was quintessential ‘80s, though they haven’t released anything as a group since that time. In terms of popular music from that era, The Cars are one of the few I enjoy listening to, so I’m fairly excited about the new release. They haven’t changed much (in terms of style, anyway). It would be nice to see them bring in more influence from the past two and a half decades, but it’s a good listen anyway.
Stream on The Cars' website
Manchester Orchestra – Simple Math
Heard this band on a late night show a couple of years ago, playing “I’ve Got Friends,” and instantly loved the sound. The music is very emotional and the lead singer lets his voice just go crazy at times. I like that lack of control. This is relatively more subdued than their previous release, Mean Everything to Nothing, but still good.
Stream at Manchester Orchestra's website
Miles Kane – Colour of the Trap
Miles Kane has been involved in three bands (that I know of) during his career; Little Flames (good), The Rascals (eh, also, not The Rascals that sang "Groovin'") and The Last Shadow Puppets (awesome). This is his first solo album. The better of his three acts so far have either featured someone else’s vocals (Little Flames) or someone else’s songwriting (The Last Shadow Puppets; primarily, at least). It will be interesting to see if he can hold his own as a solo artist.
> "King Crawler"
Okkervil River – I am Very Far
Indie folk rock with some flair for the dramatic. This band seems unassuming enough at first, but there are elements throughout the album that bring them from beyond the typical, such as the chanting of “show yourself” during the track of the same name.
Stream at NPR
The Sea and Cake – The Moonlight Butterfly
The Sea and Cake is a somewhat enigmatic band for me. A fairly strange name, albums that can be hard to find, a jazz influence rarely seen in indie rock and a different way of releasing their music (they don’t believe in singles). I can’t say that, at least from the albums I’ve heard, the jazz influence is particularly pronounced, but their grown-up style puts them at different level than the many 20-something indie bands around now (though I love many of those, too).
Wild Beasts – Smother
Poetic, artsy British rock with a falsetto lead voice that would be annoying anywhere else. This is one of the few bands I found out about while listening to the radio, although it was “Indie Rock Monday.” With this new album, they’ve maintained what makes their music so great.
Stream at The Guardian
Blood Orange - "Dinner"/"Bad Girls" (single)
Here We Go Magic - The January EP
"Hand in the Sky"