Wednesday, July 10, 2013


Run the Jewels 
Two of 2012’s most explosive forces, Killer Mike and El-P, team up and gave fans a free album that combines flawless production, magnificent delivery, and a bounce that is will make any fan of hip-hop want more. While Yeezus and Magna Carta maybe the talk of the rap world, Run The Jewels is the album and duo that critics and fans should be focusing on and a real call to Jay and ‘Ye that they better watch the throne.

Chomping riffs that would make a monster smile and brutal rhythm lines, the Georgia slug-metal titans return for more brutality and more bone crunching rock and do it in such fashion that you might just want to use this in as your workout music. 

These New PuritansField of Reeds
The experimental British band return with their third album and hears them combining symphonic arraignments and jazz influences to make their musicianship grow in areas of psychedelic art rock.

Deftones’ Chino Moreno teams up with members of  Isis to bring the sound of the sunset and romantic mood to the summer. With just six songs, Palms manage to capture a frame of mind that is not only essential for this time of year, but give it a score and beautiful arraignment to leave you wanting more.

The LimousinesHush
The sophomore album from California’s Limousines hears the band furthering their colorful electronic-pop by evoking the mood of the Golden State’s atmosphere and L.A. lifestyle. 

Power Trip Manifest Decimation
Texas’ Power Trip arrives with their debut album and while it was independently made and produced it packs more punch than most metal bands on major labels or with major funding. Manifest Decimation is part hardcore, part sludge, part classic metal that hears this young band become innovators of the genre. 

Crystal FightersCave Rave
The California electro-pop band return with their sophomore album and now after a few years together, they manage to create a tighter sound, catchier songs, and pack enough energy that will keep you dancing on the beach all day and running into the ocean to cool off just to dance some more.

Joey Bada$$ - Summer Knights
The second mixtape from Brooklyn buzzworthy rapper Joey Bada$$ hears the emcee combine jazz samples and sounds teams up with an array of hotshot producers like Chuck Strangers, Kirk Knight, MF Doom, Statik Selektah, DJ Premier, Lee Bannon, Oddisee, Navie D, and Bruce Leekix. With a roster and mixtape as solid as this, it only makes us hungrier for his debut.

Canada’s Austra return with their second album and while electronic blips and sonic sounds were the bands claim to fame a few years back, they manage to dial it down a bit for Olympia and showcase Katie Stelmanis voice more as an instrument. An interesting listen and worth checking out.

Miles KaneDon’t Forget Who You Are
British singer / songwriter Miles Kane is back with his second record and hears much of the same Britrock inspired rock that cannon balled his career early on. Fans of Kane will indulge in new music, while new listeners maybe getting him confused with current British sensation, Jake Bugg. 

WaleThe Gifted
Washington D.C.’s favorite rapper returns with his third album and it is a star-studded feast. With help from Meek Mill, Cee Lo Green, Yo Gotti, Lyfe Jennings, Nicki Minaj, Juicy J, Rihanna, Ne-Yo, Rick Ross, Wiz Khalifa, 2 Chainz, Tiara Thomas, French Montana, Dom Kennedy, and YG, it is fun to hear all of these collaborations together, yet, The Gifted plays more like a mixtape than a full album, also, with so many guests, it takes away from the real star of the show –- Wale himself. 

Mayer HawthorneWhere Does This Door Go?
The L.A. based Mayer Hawthorne returns with his third album and brings his neo-soul / yacht rock love together again. Where Does This Door Go? Is Hawthorne living in the sounds of the yuppie  1980’s and enjoying every second of it and making zero apologizes for it.

Alice in ChainsThe Devil Put the Dinosaurs Here
A band like Alice in Chains does not have to try hard to impress their fans or generate sounds to create new ones. Even though this is current singer William DuVall’s second with the band (the bands fifth album overall), it sounds fresher and different than anything they have done in the past while managing to maintain the harmonies and heaviness that made them legends in the 90’s. 

Hodgy Beats Untitled EP 2
One of Odd Futures standout emcees comes back with another EP of skate-rap and fun production but tries to really showoff on his own only bringing fellow OF member Left Brain and Trash Talk member Lee Spielman on as guests. While he is really making a name for himself, Hodgy makes a valiant push and has us curious for another solo album. 

EditorsThe Weight of Your Love
England’s Editors return with their fourth album and after changing styles with their underrated 2009 LP, In This Light and on This Evening, the band lost a member, founding guitarist Chris Urbanowicz but gained two more members Justin Lockey and Elliott Williams and headed to Nashville for new atmosphere and imagination to make their latest offering. After hearing the first single, “A Ton of Love,” it seemed that Editors were in fine form for a massive comeback with a single as fantastic as that, however, the rest of the record feels mundane and tired. Much of the albums motifs are of love, politics, and life while trying very hard to be abstract about each topic, it unfortunately sounds very forced and out of focus for a band whose strength was writing magnificent stadium-style rock and roll songs with an electronic edge.

Jay-Z Magna Carta...Holy Grail 
For his 12th album, yes, 12th, Jay-Z was sponsored by Samsung to make a record that they could give away as an app to costumers before the album would hit store shelves. In theory it is part of the plan for HOV to make a ton of money and score a hit record, as a businessman it is understandable why he made the decision to do it, as a fan and lover of hip-hop and music this album is the embodiment of selling out and just giving a phoned-in, zero effort compilation of songs that feel more like sporadic ideas and concepts than flushed out visions. One would expect more from Jay-Z, but then again, why are we surprised the album is dull, unfocused, and boring? He has no vision in hip-hop anymore just in the business of it. He is not hungry to explode himself as an emcee or lyricist anymore and feels he doesn’t have to. He has conquered it all and it is a crowning achievement to his life’s worth, yet, this record hears Jay-Z, the CEO of hip-hop a mere shadow of his former self. When he gave the world The Black Album in 2004 and planned a retirement, he should have stayed retired. If you thought any album of his could not get any worse than Kingdom Come, think again.