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New Adds: Neon Indian, Deerhunter, Beach House and more

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Alaska Thunder*ck - Anus: “ANUS” by Alaska Thunderf*ck is the greatest thing since Beethoven invented The Grammys™. This debut album by the eponymous performer tells the tale of an alien from the planet Glamtron, who came to Earth to rip up some wigs and look really f*cking good. The first song on the album is aptly named “HIEEEEE” and serves as a spoken word introduction to the world of drag. This is immediately followed by the songs “Anus”, “Pussy”, and “Beard” which are about various other things. For a drag album, the tracks on “ANUS” embody an impressive variety of musical styles. “Pussy” is a doo-wop love song that sounds like it’s from the 50’s, “Gimmie All Your Money” is random-ass trap song (starring lovable hot mess, Laganja Estranja), and “Killer” is a Lana Del Rey-esque ballad that makes Alaska sound all dreamy and stuff. My personal favorites are “This is My Hair” in which Alaska makes sure that we know that she doesn’t wear wigs, and “The Shade of it All” which stars the AAA girls! (Courtney, Alaska, and Willam) It’s pretty hot. The final song, “Your Makeup is Terrible” needs to be seen to be believed (and also heard).  Anyway, this album is great. You should listen to it no matter what kind of music you're into, as there’s something in it for everyone. Anus. DAVID

RIYL: Anus

Recommended Tracks: Anus

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Neon Indian - VEGAA INTL. Night School: After a four year break from making music, Neon Indian got back together to create VEGA INTL. Night School, their most electro-pop dance album yet. The album features many combinations of random synth sounds and funky bass lines that together with simple dance beats gives this album something of an 80s sound. A song that really showcases this is "The Glitzy Hive." This song has a hypnotizing, repetitive and catchy chorus that features all sorts of weird bass sounds that sound like they were recorded with the same keyboard as the Seinfeld theme. Other songs such as "Annie" and "61 Cygni Ave" draw from more of a reggae influence and contain a lot of syncopated guitar rhythms. However, with all of these new dance-pop songs there are still songs with plenty of chill vibes. If Pink Floyd recorded the song "Baby’s Face," it probably would have been on Dark Side of the Moon. This album is an awesome direction for this band and I am excited to see what is in store for them. HARRY

RIYL: Deer Hunter, Animal Collective, MGMT
        
Recommended Tracks: "Annie" (2), "The Glitzy Hive" (6), and "Slumlord" (8)

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Raury - All We Need: Raury’s music defies classification, blending folk, gospel, hip-hop, and pop. In 2015, this is not particularly rare, but Raury’s lyrics recall the singer-songwriters of the early 2000s where an artist would sit with their guitar are try to speak their truth. On All We Need, Raury takes these tropes and revitalizes them, although instead of exclusively singing about love, he sings about peace on earth (“Peace Prevail”) and fighting inequality (“Forbidden Knowledge”). At times, the hippy-ness can be a little overwhelming, but Raury’s charisma is enough keep the project interesting. KEN
 
RIYL: Donnie Trumpet & The Social Experiment, GoldLink, Jesse Boykins III, Anyone from the lineup of New York AfroPunk Fest 2015

Recommended Tracks: “Forbidden Knowledge” (3), “Devil’s Whisper” (6), “Peace Prevail” (7), and “Friends” (14)

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Deerhunter - Fading FrontierThe Atlanta group's follow up to 2013's Monomania is a psychedelic pop-rock trip. The band's eclecticism shines on Fading Frontier, creating a dreamy patchwork of sound and emotion. These songs feel like songs to walk down the beach to, but this sunny-day soundtrack challenges the listener with the serious subject matter of the lyrics intertwined seamlessly with the catchy melodies. The result is the cloud of ambiguity that drifts throughout the album. As Bradford Cox sings on track 2, "I'm living my life," and aren't we all. This ambiguity, this mixture of good and bad and everything in between is what colors our lives. For some insight into the inspiration behind this album, check out the interactive inspiration map Bradford Cox made. CAROLINE

RIYL: Atlas Sound, Panda Bear, Wild Nothing

Recommended Tracks: "Breaker" (3), "Duplex Planet" (4), and "All The Same" (1) 

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Wax Idols - American Tragic: If you read my introduction to this email, you already know that I have hardly been able to watch/listen to anything other than “Hotline Bling” for the majority of the past week. In fact, I just watched it before writing this very sentence because it had been about an hour since my last viewing… and I almost forgot what I was supposed to be writing about. I may be broken in that I might not be able to listen to new music ever again, but luckily, I listened to and chose to review Wax Idols’ American Tragic days before the “Hotline Bling” video was released (take that, Drake)! Almost all the other reviews or little description blurbs I have read about American Tragic are quick to mention that former White Lung member(s?) joined Wax Idols before recording this album, as if that had some sort of influence on the band’s sound. But guess what? This sounds NOTHING like the high-energy punk of White Lung; this is a fucking goth/new wave album, so take a chill pill, other reviewers/promoters and stop deceiving people. Luckily, for Wax Idols, this album (though not what anyone necessarily expected) is super groovy and sounds like it was transplanted from the late eighties as it could have been the soundtrack to any coming-of-age film centered around an outcast, somewhat morose, black-clad teenage girl. Any of the songs on this album seem like something that Buffalo Bill would have danced to in Silence of the Lambs (which is a good thing, just to clarify), and they all make me wish my hair were long enough to tease… I suppose I will just settle for wearing some Siouxsie Sioux eyeliner. ASHLEY
 
RIYL: Siouxsie and the Banshees, Dum Dum Girls, The Cure

Recommended Tracks: “Lonely You” (2), “Severely Yours” (7), “Deborah” (4) 

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Beach House - Thank Your Lucky StarsMy loves have taken a different path than they usually do. Beach House usually deliberately and slowly release their music, usually waiting one or two years in between each project before putting out an immaculate (and small) album. Thank Your Lucky Stars is the c-c-c-combo breaker in this tradition being released only about a month after their last album Depression Cherry. Victoria Legrand explains on the Beach House reddit ama that such this decision was simply based on their desire to perform this material live.  They thought about how it should be released “properly,” perhaps with more time in between releases, but they don’t give a fuck.

TYLS was recorded at the same time as Depression Cherry, but to them, these songs collectively have an entirely different feeling and vibe. And it really does. This material is darker and moodier. If Depression Cherry sounds like Victoria Legrand and Alex Scally rocking you to sleep in a summer day, this would be the its night sister.  In fact, most of the music is written about a “she.”  As Legrand puts it "The She, the Big She, the metaphorical She, the actual She, the mother, the daughter, the feminine energy, the feminine world... not just memories but the living with it. Being a woman myself, and all our history and our present, our future. There is unlimited inspiration in the She.” 

In addition, many of the topics seem to be much more political,  attempting to "show many ruminations on the roles and expectations of women in our society, internet culture, alcoholism, abuse.” I just love the melodic development that each song has. Each tells a story with an emotion that unfolds in layers with each guitar rift, synth hit, or string chords. DYLAN

RIYL: Cocteau Twins, Devotion Beach House, Slowdive 

Recommended Tracks: "She’s So Lovely" (2), "All Your Yeahs" (3), "One Thing" (4), "Elegy to the Void" (7), and "Rough Song" (8)