As fun as it is to complain about “music these days,” and how it’s all been downhill since The Chronic 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. (Banner via)
Today, we’ve got selections from Meek Mill, Neil Young with Crazy Horse, Rone, and more.
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The First Story by Rone
The First Story, the debut album from Philadelphia-based emcee Rone, actually came out a few months ago, but it drew my attention again after watching this video, in which Rone takes on fellow rapper Blizzard in a rap battle — and destroys him. The First Story features nothing but soulful new beats, and Rone’s intrepid originality shines in all 12 hook-heavy, well-paced tracks, to make for an extremely impressive debut from an exciting young artist.
Dreams & Nightmares by Meek Mill
For more on the gifted storytelling in Meek Mill’s major label debut, check out the Smoking Section.
Psychedelic Pill by Neil Young and Crazy Horse
A sprawling rocker from the reunited Neil Young and Crazy Horse, with three tracks coming in at over 16 minutes. Young claimed that he was inspired to work with his backing band again while writing his memoir, Waging Heavy Peace, and it’s easy to hear what he meant: like the book, Psychedelic Pill is all over the place, a little bit folk, a lot bit reverb rock, and a whole lotta rambling, in a way only Neil Young can perfect.
Hands of Glory by Andrew Bird
Typically when an artist releases two albums within months of each other, it means that the first is what the talent wants to put out, and the second will be what the record label demands the talent puts out, in the form of an easy cash grab of oddities, obscurities, and, oftentimes, songs that probably shouldn’t have seen the light of day. In Hands of Glory, unfairly talented musical virtuoso Andrew Bird made a sterling companion piece to the equally excellent Break It Yourself, which came out in March, the only difference being that this album is even more stripped down than its brother, with Bird and his Americana band recording around a single at-home microphone. It’s a charming concept, and a fun, folksy album.
Cee Lo’s Magic Moment by Cee Lo
Why yes, this is a Cee Lo Christmas album, and if it’s as great as the album cover, which features Mr. Thomas DeCarlo Callaway in the passenger seat of a flying car driven by a reindeer and led by three horses, it will be the greatest holiday themed R&B album with special guests Christina Aguilera and the Muppets EVER.
(Actually, it’s pretty great.)