New This Week: King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard, Perfume Genius, The 2 Bears, Adam & the Ants and Yacht

King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard – I’m in Your Mind Fuzz: Who knew Australia would become the psychedelic capitol of the world, a little late to the game, but right on time for a revival that just keeps growing. We’re really in the midst of a psych rock revival that is unparalleled by anything ‘cept the late 60’s themselves. King Wizard is a great addition to the ranks, and this album solidifies a position alongside Aussie psych giants Tame Impala. The album kicks off with an incessant pulsating swirl of reverb that really doesn’t let up until track 5 – first “I’m in Your Mind” then “I’m Not in Your Mind” now “I’m In Your Mind Fuzz”, make up your mind gadammit! what’s it gonna be? Bluesy harmonica licks, hobo-stylin’, rockin down the train tracks, no lookin back. Blipping and blooping, dripping, clipping, wavering vocals, under water dolphin sounds got my head spinning. Mass attack! Double up on the drums, triple time guitars. No kidding. Best thing about it all though? Their music videos, Wowzer BowzerSHILL

RIYL: Pond, White Fence, Ty Segall

Recommended Tracks: “I’m in Your Mind”, “Cellophane”, “Her and I (Slow Jam II)”

Perfume Genius – Too Bright: There are songwriters and then there are songwriters. Mike Hadreas aka Perfume Genius, shows his prowess as a songwriter on his third album, Too Bright. Somewhere between the safety net of familiar piano ballads and the bat shit insanity of blasting synth tracks Perfume Genius fashions his songs. Throughout Too Bright, delicate vibrato and heartfelt piano chords are Hadreas’ primary building blocks. Opening track “I Decline,” a deliciously short ballad consisting of piano, vocals, and elegant songwriting is a good representation of the simple beauty that characterizes much of this album. There are, however, also some great tracks with full band and drum arrangements, notably “Queen,” an unstoppable boulder of sound that huffs and puffs like a gorilla beating its chest. The song “Fool” grooves nicely with a vintage pop atmosphere, including saxophone, upright bass, and howling falsetto. The full band songs comprised some of my favorite moments; I just wish there were a few more of them to feed my hunger. Once I got the taste in my mouth I wanted more, but was mostly left hungry. He does get pretty ambitious experimenting with different sounds; the croaking vocal melody of “I’m a Mother” and the terrifying synth blare on “My Body” come to mind. But I could’ve still used more tracks that hit as hard as “Queen.” Listening to Too Bright is like having someone delicately stroke your cheek with their fingertips when you really just wanted them to slap you across the face; the sensual caress is gentle and sends a shiver through your whole body, but secretly you wanted that rush of adrenaline that only comes from getting smacked. Because you’re a weirdo and you like the pain. This album lashes out on occasion but overall it’s pretty tame. That being said, I love Too Bright and think you will too if you’re looking for tasteful arrangements and gorgeous songwriting. ARI

RIYL: Blood Orange, The Antlers

Recommended Tracks: “Queen”, “Fool”, “I Decline”

The 2 Bears – The Night Is YoungMy only complaint about this album is less directed at The 2 Bears than at myself: some of the songs are just a tad long for me, though not because they get tiresome but rather because I run out of dance moves. Spanning a variety of genres – from straight up dance to house to island music (seriously, “Money Man” could have been in The Little Mermaid soundtrack) to something that the Internet calls “indietronica” to hip hop (“Son of the Sun” not only has some cool rapping but also some BADASS African singing) – The Night Is Young is certainly unique. And sometimes a little weird, but in a good way: the deep, distorted vocals in “My Queen” and the last two minutes of “Get Out” (which is probably my favorite part of the album) are simultaneously unnerving and mesmerizing, but more than anything else, this album is totally groovy. ASHLEY

RIYL: Hot Chip, Caribou, Juan Maclean

Recommended Tracks: “Get Out," “Son of the Sun,” and “See You”

Adam & the Ants – Kings of the Wild FrontierSince this is a classic, I think that a quick history lesson is necessary, just so we can all appreciate how freaking weird the evolution of music is sometimes. In London during the late 1970s, punk rock was tha shiznit – The Damned, The Clash, Sex Pistols, and a multitude of iconic, classic punk bands started in this scene, including Adam & the Ants.  ~At this point, some of you are probably objecting – why doesn’t this album get added to the PUNK classics wall? Just stay with me because this is where the story gets interesting.~ So, Adam & the Ants released their first (punk) album in ’79 (which is pretty great but was not commercially successful), so Adam Ant hired the Sex Pistols’ former manager, Malcolm McLaren, to guide the band to superstardom. McLaren’s advice? Have Adam Ant dress like a pirate – the O.G. sexy pirate WAY before Johnny Depp made that a thing again back in 2003 – and move away from traditional punk rock in favor of a New Wave sound. And voila, Kings of the Wild Frontier happened, just like that, and became one of the most influential new wave albums ever – in other words, you can definitely thank Adam Ant for popularizing and crystalizing the genre of music that provided the soundtrack to all your favorite John Hughes films. The entire album is killer and tons of fun (and also not dated-sounding, like a lot of other 1980’s new wave music) and is more or less a necessity for anyone who likes music. ASHLEY

RIYL: Talking Heads, B-52’s (but good B-52’s, not just “Love Shack” or “Rock Lobster”)

Recommended tracks: “Dog Eat Dog,” “Press Darlings,” “Don’t Be Square (Be There)”

Yacht – Where Does This Disco EP: Los Angeles based band Yacht returns with a quick 4 track EP that leaves you yearning for more from the band. The title track on this EP is super groovy and lead singer Clair Evans’s hypnotizing voice powers this funky pop song. This EP is really fun and a great easy listen if you need to get a taste of summer back in your life. This snippet of an album is a clear indication of Yacht’s continued future within electronic pop. WILL

RIYL: Holy Ghost, Cut Copy, Classixx

TRACKS: Where Does This Disco, Works like Magic


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