My Top 5 New Releases :: Week of June 22 and 29

new-release-reportMy Top 5 New Releases :: Week of June 22 and 29

1. Coming Home :: Leon Bridges

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Three-Sentence Review: Everything about this album feels good to me, the throwback vibe, the soul sensibility, the musicality, the way it makes me want to sway and sing-a-long; I want to swim around in this album for days and days. This is definitely on my growing list of favorite albums of the year. Leon’s voice reminds me of Sam Cooke, and that is a HUGE thing for me to say.

Initial Favorite Track(s): Coming Home, Smooth Sailin’ and Pull Away

Rating (1-5 Stars): 5+

Coming Home

2. Live at S.P.A.C.E. :: Casey Buckley

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Three-Sentence Review: The next best thing to getting to see Casey Buckley play live (which I encourage you to do, if you get a chance) is this new live album, recorded at S.P.A.C.E. in Evanston, Illinois. My absolute favorite track is 3,000 Miles, a song about the struggles of long-distance love, something I’ve definitely had my share of in the past. Casey’s songwriting is genuine and intimate, full of vulnerability and melody, the likes of early John Mayer and Joshua Radin.

Initial Favorite Track(s): 3,000 Miles, The One to Lose and High & Dry (Radiohead cover)

Rating (1-5 Stars): 5

Remember Me

3. My Love is Cool :: Wolf Alice

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Three-Sentence Review: A little bit shoegaze, a little bit alternative rock, a little bit chamber pop adds up to an all-around addictive debut album. At times I’m reminded of Garbage, at times its Sleater-Kinney that comes to mind, other songs call to mind a rougher-around-the-edges Mazzy Star, or Jesus and Mary Chain, and then I also sense a Palma Violets vibe. This is a PLAY LOUDLY album, especially if driving around Los Angeles at night (or insert your favorite city to cruise after dark in).

Initial Favorite Track(s): Turn to Dust, Moaning Lisa Smile and You’re a Germ

Rating (1-5 Stars): 5

Moaning Lisa Smile

4. The State of Gold :: Matt Pond PA

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Three-Sentence Review: Eleven albums in and Matt Pond PA still puts together an album full of stellar songs. The theme of this album seems to be escaping and exploring, themes that sing to my gypsy soul. There is something wistful about this album that I relate to, feelings that attach and have me replaying the album, again and again, especially the last track, Spaceland.

Initial Favorite Track(s): There Were Times, Take Me With You and Spaceland

Rating (1-5 Stars): 5

Spaceland (live demo)

5. VHS :: X Ambassadors

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Three-Sentence Review: Renegades, the opening track, has “Summer song” written all over it, and I’m glad for it because I’m always craving a Summer tune when the weather turns itself up to unbearable, and the nights go long. I love the story-time aspect between the songs (labeled as “interludes“), which makes the album feel like a film, or a film’s soundtrack, at the very least. X Ambassadors are great live (I was lucky enough to catch them at KROQ’s Weenie Roast) – if you get the chance, go check them out.

Initial Favorite Track(s): Renegades, Gorgeous and Superpower

Rating (1-5 Stars): 5

Renegades

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