As fun as it is to complain about “music these days,” and how it’s all been downhill since The Chronic or something came out, it’s even MORE fun to listen to — wait for it — good music. Every Tuesday, a.k.a. Music Release Day, we’ll highlight five albums worth (legally) downloading or driving to the local Best Buy (lolz) for.
Today, we’ve got a rapper as good as his stage name is bizarre, the best drunk band of all-time, a dance-pop group that released their most solid album yet, and more. (Sorry, Rush.)
The Plot Against Common Sense by Future of the Left
Every plot against everything should involve sardonic noise-rock, played at ear-splitting levels, sung by an often-screaming mad man who used to write lyrics in the same room as a flashing strobe light. Not for the faint of heart, although “Robocop 4 - Fuck Off Robocop,” in a perfect, if slightly dystopian, world, would be a radio hit.
Mysterious Phonk: The Chronicles Of SpaceGhostPurrp by SpaceGhostPurrp
Bauhaus was the first band signed to record label 4AD back in the early 1980s – some 30 years later, 4AD has struck gold with another mysterious musical talent. He’s SpaceGhostPurrp, best known for producing Wiz Khalifa’s “T.A.P.,” and the 21-year-old’s hypnotically visceral rhyming, combined with the album’s murky production, is as attractively offbeat as Bauhaus’ dark drone.
In Our Heads by Hot Chip
When Hot Chip released their debut album all the way back in 2004, the oft-kilter Coming On Strong, no one could have guessed they’d still be around eight years later, making the best music of their career. In Our Heads, which honestly doesn’t have a bum track, something that can’t even be said about their former best-yet album, The Warning, is first-rate, endlessly sincere, yet never overly affectionate, electropop with touches of disco and soul rock in there, too. I wonder what they’ll sound like in 2020?
Synthetica by Metric
Metric lead singer Emily Haines described her band’s fifth album, Synthetica, as such in April:
SYNTHETICA is about insomnia, fucking up, fashion, all the devices and gadgets attached to our brains, getting wasted, watching people die in other countries, watching people die in your own country, dancing your ass off, questioning the cops, poetic justice, standing up for yourself, sex, the apocalypse, doing some stupid shit and totally regretting it but then telling everyone it made you stronger, leaving town as a solution to unsolvable problems, owning your actions and owning your time.
I don’t know what any of that means, but I do know I like the way Synthetica sounds like the soundtrack to watching someone throwing multicolored paint on a wall, but you’re not sure whether they’re doing it because they’re having fun or if they’re f*cking pissed. Considering Lou Reed makes a guest appearance on the record, it’s probably the latter.
Class Clown Spots the UFO by Guided by Voices
Ohio’s greatest band of merry drunkards return with their second reunion album of the year, and it’s even better than first one, Let’s Go Eat the Factory. Not only is it hookier than Factory and Tobin Sprout’s beautifully strange voice (I used a Beatles analogy the last time I wrote about them, so let’s go with the Townshend to Bob Pollard’s Daltrey) shines brighter here than on anything since 1996’s Under the Bushes, Under the Stars, it’s also immediately more GbV than anyone could have hoped. A classic album worthy of a classic reunion.