The Pulse is the Uproxx Music guide to the best new albums, mixtapes, and other music releases that matter this week. Find our complete list of the records coming out in June here.
The Kanye West release parade continues (even if there perhaps aren’t as many people lining the streets to watch it roll slowly by these days): Last week was Ye, and now it’s his collaborative effort with Kid Cudi, Kids See Ghosts. It remains to be seen if the album will restore public faith in one of the most influential artists of this generation, but at the very least, it feels like he’s doing things his way. Meanwhile, there was also non-Kanye music released this week: Jorja Smith eschews collaborators on her debut offering, Future is trying his hand at the hip-hop film soundtrack, and Sugarland continues their reign of country dominance, this time with an assist from Taylor Swift.
Kids See Ghosts — Kids See Ghosts
Like Ye before it, Kanye’s collaborative album with Kid Cudi was premiered during an exclusive listening party, and via a not-as-exclusive live stream (which faced significant technical issues). Also like Ye, the album features a lot of disparate references, addressing everything from The Handmaid’s Tale to samples of jazz and Kurt Cobain.
Jorja Smith — Lost & Found
Jorja Smith is another big-time hip-hop collaborator, having previously associated herself with Kendrick Lamar, Drake, and others. She decided to go it alone on her debut album, though, which allows her evocative vocals and R&B stylings to really shine on their own merits.
Lykke Li — So Sad So Sexy
Capital letters be damned, Lykke Li’s first album since 2014 has arrived. It begins with the enticing “Hard Rain,” and from there continues to combine alternative pop, hip-hop, and R&B influences into a combination that’s as contemporary as it is adventurous.
Read our review of So Sad So Sexy here.
Future — Superfly (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
If Black Panther started a trend of rapper-helmed movie soundtracks, we’ll take it. Future leads the Superfly album, which also features contributions from Lil Wayne, 21 Savage, Partynextdoor, Young Thug, Miguel, and Khalid.
Wifisfuneral — Ethernet
The album was pushed back a couple weeks (because who wants to compete with Kanye and Pusha T), but the 21-year-old’s debut Interscope offering is here. Perhaps he seems like another Soundcloud rapper on the surface, but Wifisfuneral prides himself on a more old-school lyrical complexity that’s sure to please traditional hip-hop heads.
Sugarland — Bigger
The headline here, of course, is “Babe,” which was written by and which features Taylor Swift. There’s more beyond that, though, including a bunch of optimistic country-pop hits-in-the-making that show why Sugarland has made their way to the top tier of contemporary country music.
Pllush — Stranger To The Pain
Pllush sounds very much like they’re a part of the Bandcamp wave that spawned acts like Lucy Dacus and Soccer Mommy. That’s more than a good thing, though, because all three are strong, female-led indie rock groups with confident, engaging songwriting.
Read our interview with Pllush here.
Snail Mail — Lush
Hockey was a formative part of the upbringing of Snail Mail’s Lindsey Jordan, and the grit needed in the sport has served her well. At just 18, she’s tough enough to play with the big boys, and her debut album on Matador is filled with songwriting and performances that are well beyond her years.
Read our review of Lush here.
Ana Egge – White Tiger
Ana Egge is clearly proficient at purveying pillow-soft indie folk, such as with the Belle And Sebastian-like whimsy of album opener “Girls, Girls, Girls.” It’s low-tempo, but not low-energy, as there’s a ton of vivacity behind the rest of the serene tunes on this record.