My Top 5 New Releases :: Weeks of May 11, 18 and 25

My Top 5 New Releases :: Week of May 11, 18 and 25

1. The Desired Effect :: Brandon Flowers


Three-Sentence Review: The album feels like an 80’s flashback (especially Lonely Town) meets Hot Fuss-era (The Killers), infused with Brandon’s brilliant showmanship that you can even hear in the recording, and his mix of whimsy and reality in his songwriting. This is definitely a pop soaked effort, but it works, oh yes, it really does work, and you will be singing-a-long before you know it. The songs seem bigger than life and dying to be performed live, especially with opener Dreams Come True and Can’t Deny My Love; I hope to get the chance to catch him live sometime soon (maybe Life is Beautiful).

Initial Favorite Track(s)Lonely Town, Can’t Deny My Love and Untangled Love

Rating (1-5 Stars): 5+

Lonely Town (live)

Can’t Deny My Love

2. Dark Bird is Home :: The Tallest Man on Earth


Three-Sentence Review: Lush and melodic, personal and intimate, and chill-inducing, Dark Bird is Home soars through my headphones, and finds me longing to blast it loudly through my car speakers and drive up the coast with the windows down. Reminiscent of Bon Iver and Iron and Wine, as well as a little Sufjan Stevens, and even a little Tom Petty, all with a little more jangly guitars and upbeat instrumentation, this is incredibly listenable and sonically addictive. I want to swirl around in the songs on this album, lose myself in them, then find myself, afterwards.

Initial Favorite Track(s): Darkness of a Dream, Little Nowhere Towns and Seventeen

Rating (1-5 Stars): 5+


3. The L-Shaped Man :: Ceremony


Three-Sentence Review: Shoegaze meets Goth meets New Wave/Punk, with an unmistakable “inspired by Joy Division” haze wrapped around every song. This is good, damn good really, and so reminiscent of music I listened to, and danced to, in the very late 80’s/very early 90’s that I have to check my reflection to make sure I’m not wearing my gothed-up best pale palor meets black as night eye make-up (well sometimes I still do, but that’s no the point). I don’t think I will ever outgrow this kind of sound.

Initial Favorite Track(s): Exit Fears, Your Life in France and The Understanding 

Rating (1-5 Stars): 5

Your Life in France

4. Peanut Butter :: Joanna Gruesome


Three-Sentence Review: Though I’d argue this album should have held off a few weeks to be a Summer release, it is close enough that I find myself wishing for the longer days and sweltering heat, because this is definitely an album full of Summertime songs. Part pop, part punk, part grunge, part indie, part part throwback 90’s alternative rock and riot grrls, Joanna Gruesome is a sound I’ve been missing big time, and needing right about now in my life. I can’t stop listening to this one.

Initial Favorite Track(s)Last Year, Honestly Do Yr Worst and Hey! I Wanna Be Yr Best Friend

Rating (1-5 Stars): 5

Last Year

5. English Graffiti :: The Vaccines


Three-Sentence Review: The album, at first listen, reminds me of Arctic Monkeys AM album, with a little Queens of the Stone Age mixed in, as well as something akin to Bastille and The 1975, the latter a more updated edge than I’ve heard previously from The Vaccines. I’ve always been a little on the fence where The Vaccines were concerned, but I am really digging this album. This is another set of songs that I feel are ready-made to be played live.

Initial Favorite Track(s)Dream Lover, 20/20 and Maybe I Could Hold You

Rating (1-5 Stars): 5

Dream Lover

11 thoughts on “My Top 5 New Releases :: Weeks of May 11, 18 and 25

  1. Yay to The Desired Effect. I get more of a Sam’s Town vibe off it but then there are those bits of Hot Fuss shining through especially “I Can Change” and at the same time it’s fresh. Love it a lot and can’t even believe that release date came already.

    1. I have listened to it a few times via Spotify, and this morning I had it playing while driving my morning commute. I hear Sam’s Town in it now, too…so yes, I agree.

      1. Another weird one is that, and I’m not saying it even sounds anyyyyyything like it in any way, but whenever I listen to it John Mellencamp pops into my head at some point and I can’t figure out why. I think it has something to do with some of the piano or keyboard stuff but I don’t even know I haven’t tried to figure that one out. I think the best part is that although some of the influences can be heard it’s a brand new thing. For me, at this point, it’s a “Brandon Flowers sound” and maybe eventually more people will see it that way! (You probably see it that way too!)

      2. I do! Definitely! But we have ears and soft spots for him, I think…you know? I’ll have to listen for any Mellencamp the nxt time I play it…

  2. I listened yesterday and was like “what…where” I don’t know what it is. I can’t put my finger on it yet but then again I think I shouldn’t worry about figuring out why it reminds me of anything right? let it be Brandon!! <3

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