Despite innumerable think-pieces loudly proclaiming the contrary, rock is not on its last legs in 2018. In fact, it’s thriving quite nicely. Are there artists dominating the charts in a Drake-like fashion this year? No, and it doesn’t seem like there will be anytime soon. That being said, the slate of new and amazing music being released on a monthly basis for those who love a fuzzed-out guitars has been downright impressive.
Here are the best new rock albums that dropped this week.
Deafheaven — Ordinary Corrupt Human Love
For a while there around 2013-14 just after the release of their second album Sunbather, Deafheaven were the de facto “hipster” metal band. Metal, historically, is not a “cool” genre — though the sheer number of modern rap stars rocking Megadeth t-shirts is staggering — but every once in a while, one group breaks through and becomes a critic’s darling. Prepare for the hype machine to rev up once again with the release of their new album Ordinary Corrupt Human Love. As Uproxx’s Steven Hyden put it in his review, “Deafheaven is back making mesmerizing, unapologetically ‘big’ rock music that sometimes abandons metal altogether.”
Dirty Projectors — Lamp Lit Prose
Well, that certainly didn’t take very long. After making their fans wait five years in between projects for their last album, Dirty Projector’s followed up 2017’s self-titled record with a quickness. Lamp Lit Prose is everything you’ve come to expect from the David Longstreth-fronted indie rockers. It’s emotional, upbeat, with enough sonic twists and turns to keep you constantly on your toes as you listen through its 10-compact tracks.
Body/Head — The Switch
Kim Gordon is not the kind of artist to rest on her laurels. After the dissolution of Sonic Youth, the singer/bass player has thrown herself into a variety of different project, the most interesting however is a musical collaboration with Bill Nace, they’ve dubbed Body/Head. The duo’s latest album is an intense collection of experimental guitar tracks that recalls the vibe of the ’70s rock group Suicide.
The National — Boxer: Live In Brussels
For many, The National peaked with the release of their 2007 album Boxer. I personally disagree with that stance — Trouble Will Find Me is superior in every way — but the devotion to that prior release amongst the band’s fans is total. To celebrate its 10th anniversary, the group decided to perform Boxer in its entirety during a gig in Brussels last year. The resulting record is a raw and intense rehash of some of the most beloved songs in all of indie-rock.
Smokescreens — Used To Yesterday
You’ve probably never heard of Smokescreens before, but that’s okay. The LA-based rock band have bubbled under the periphery in years past, but look to gain a larger appreciation with their latest album Used To Yesterday. It’s a jangly-guitar filled collection of songs, marked with lo-fi vocals and searing solos. Play this record at sunset for maximum impact.