Spring is here and with it comes the promise of brand new record releases from promising debut artists as well as seasoned veterans. Upgrade your iPod by checking out some of May’s most heralded new releases.
Queens of the Stone Age front man (and Palm Springs native) Josh Homme has been fast at work with his band, putting the finishing touches on their LP Like Clockwork (to be released June 4). The record is shaping up to be a dark — but critically acclaimed — addition to the band’s discography.
To tide over friends and fans, QOTSA has released the album’s first video called “I Appear Missing.” The animated short is lighting up the blogosphere, with its initial release appearing Sunday night during Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim.
Stagecoach 2013 has come and gone, but Lady Antebellum hopes to stay firmly planted in our hearts and ears with its forthcoming release, Golden. Early buzz on the effort is that it’s a hit in the making – not that the chart-topping country trio needs any help in that department.
The band has played Coachella and Pappy & Harriet's. Now Vampire Weekend is set to release a new album titled, Modern Vampires of the City. The band’s newest effort is a slight departure from its previous sound, which reeks of Jonathan Fire*Eater and Walkmen influences. However, tracks like “Diane Young” and “Step” are interesting enough to keep previous fans coming back for more.
Other releases include:
• Nocturnes by Little Boots
• Mother by Natalie Maines (of the Dixie Chicks)
• Time by Rod Stewart
• More Than Just a Dream by Talib Kwali
• Volume 3 by She & Him (Zooey Deschanel and M. Ward)
• Monomania by Deer Hunter
Brit Pop trip-hoppers Primal Scream return to electrify a new generation of hedonists with the release, More Light. Hey, if Blur and the Stone Roses can make a comeback, why not these guys?
Trace Adkins has been kicking butt and taking names on “The Celebrity Apprentice”, but you can hear what has made him a country superstar when he releases Love Will… Expect surprises from this album, like a duet with adult-contemporary pop star, Colbie Cailat on “Watch the World End”.
Music duos have always been a fan favorite. MS MR is the latest band to follow in the path of Matt & Kim, the White Stripes and Io Echo. The New York-based group releases its debut Secondhand Rapture — including the single “Bones” which was recently featured in the trailer for HBO’s Game of Thrones.
…And the award to the funniest album release would have to go to Army of the Universe’s The Hipster Sacrifice. Ah, were the world mine …
Other albums to check out:
• True Believers by Darius Rucker
• If the River Was Whiskey by the Spin Doctors
• Lip Lock by Eve
Coachella fake-out artists Daft Punk may have disappointed Phoenix’s audience at the venerable festival (thanks, R. Kelly, but you weren’t quite what we had in mind), but that is likely not to have an effect on fans when Random Access Memories hits iTunes. Expect more innovative beats, booty-shaking riffs, and modern cool from this Parisian export.
You’ll also love these releases:
• Trouble Will Find Me by The National
• Love Lust Faith + Dreams by 30 Seconds to Mars
Introducing the best day for record releases in May 2013. Indie fans, get your credit cards ready to download, download, download; CocoRosie returns with Tales of a Grass Widow. This duo’s sound is like a beautiful, but creepy Victorian lullaby.
Eisley is also dropping a much-awaiting effort called Currents. This family band does indie pop like no other. Its sweet melodies and jangling guitars are reminiscent of The Sundays and Bettie Serveert (in case you need a reference).
Wildly eccentric Polyphonic Spree returns with Yes, It’s True. This group rose to fame as part of Volkswagen and Apple’s respective Y2K TV commercial domination. You’ll love the feel-good harmonies and keyboard flourishes that make the Polyphonic Spree a delightful addition to your – ahem — iPod.
She made a name for herself alongside friends and collaborators Noah and the Whale. Now, Laura Marling continues to strike out on her own with a fourth release, Once I Was An Eagle. Expect sultry folk music from this 23 year-old English singer-songwriter.
You can’t call yourself a music fan without loving the gravely angst of Tricky’s music. He’s right up there with Nico from the Velvet Underground and Tom Waits. Tricky returns with False Idols. The first single is called “Nothing’s Changed” and features vocalist Francesca Belmonte. And any fan of Tricky knows that his deep, moody voice sounds fantastic when juxtaposed against that of a female collaborator.
Lest we not forget:
• The Devil Put Dinosaurs Here by Alice in Chains
• Weapon by Skinny Puppy
Meanwhile, there’s still time to pick up these great April releases:
Before she made waves reunited with the Postal Service at Coachella 2013, Jenny Lewis fronted Rilo Kiley (pictured right) – a charming indie rock group whose lineup included other former child stars. Rkives is a collection of B-sides with hits like “The Frug”, and a couple of rare tracks thrown in for good measure.
Find True Romance with Charli XCX. This neo-feminist club kid has crafted what could possibly amount to the coolest dance record dropped in 2013. Breakout jams include “Black Roses” and “Cloud Aura”.
And don’t forget:
• Thr!!!er by !!!
• Ready to Die by Iggy Pop & The Stooges
• English Little League by Guided by Voices
• Life on a Rock by Kenny Chesney
• Such Hot Blood by The Airborne Toxic Event
• Top of the Pops by Art Brut
• Desperate Ground by the Thermals
• Dear Miss Lonelyhearts by Cold War Kids