Depending on the response, I might make this a regular thing. I'll just talk about albums that came out on a monthly basis and point out the ones I like a lot. Some I buy, some I stream, and some I download illegally with the intention of purchasing when I can. Anyway, here goes . . .
The Animal Collective - Centipede Hz
I've talked to some diehard Animal Collective fans who don't like it, but I think they just need a little time to warm up to it. If I had to sum up the album in a word, it would be "intense". I'd say it's neither their best nor their worst, but it leans more toward the former.
Animal Collective - Today's Supernatural (Official Music Video) - YouTube
The Avett Brothers - The Carpenter
This was one of the most anticipated albums of the year. From what I understand, a lot of people are disappointed with it, which makes no sense to me. Granted, it's not as easily accessible as their last effort (I and Love and You), but it's already one of my favorite albums of the year.
avett brothers - paul newman vs. the demons - YouTube
David Byrne and St. Vincent - Love This Giant
I must admit that my expectations were pretty high for this one. I'm both a huge David Byrne and St. Vincent fan. I question how long they spent on this album because it's not as good as any of their individual efforts. Still, they're two amazing artists, and this one's at least worth a listen.
David Byrne & St. Vincent - 'Who' - YouTube
deadmau5 - > album title goes here <
The critics are destroying this album. It's getting all kinds of flack. A lot of that probably comes from his stupid comments in the media. Anyway, it's not that bad, but it would've been a lot better if about half of it were left off.
deadmau5 ft. Gerard Way - Professional Griefers (Official Video) - YouTube
Bob Dylan - Tempest
Wow. That's really all about I can say about it. I'm a huge Bob Dylan fan, and this only reinforced that. It's his best album in over a decade, and I highly recommend it to anyone who's open-minded enough to put up with what's left of his voice.
Bob Dylan - Duquesne Whistle - YouTube
Nelly Furtado - The Spirit Indestructible
I'll admit that I liked Whoa, Nelly!, but she hasn't released anything worthwhile since then. This is the worst album I've heard in quite a while. It was so offputting that I deleted it after one listen. She's going to need M.I.A.'s help if she wants to sound like she has a clue.
Nelly Furtado - Big Hoops (Bigger The Better) - YouTube
GOOD Music - Cruel Summer
It seems like the album was released just to stroke Kanye West's ego. Sadly, his ego needs no help, and this release was kind of redundant. There are enough songs to enjoy to make it worth a listen, but Kanye sounds better when he sticks to what he normally does.
Mercy (Explicit) - YouTube
Green Day - ¡Uno!
Green Day isn't punk anymore and haven't been for a longtime, but this is the closest they've gotten since their late '90s selves. If you're okay with that, you should like this album. It took a little growing-on-me, but now I would say it's the best album on this list (but not by a long shot). Just don't let the stupidity of "Kill the DJ" stop you from enjoying it.
Green Day: "Let Yourself Go" - [Official Live Video] - YouTube
Grizzly Bear - Shields
This is an excellent record, but it's getting just a little bit more attention than it deserves imho. They're a typical Brooklyn hype-magnet, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't check them out. And if you ever get a chance to see their live show, do it.
Grizzly Bear - Sleeping Ute - YouTube
Michael Jackson - Bad 25
Predictably, we're seeing re-releases of Michael Jackson's albums. Bad was easily one of the better albums of the '80s, and I'm surprised at how well it has endured the test of time. The demos are an interesting listen, and the DVD is surprisingly good.
Michael Jackson - BAD 25 âœ¬ I'll Be There âœ¬ - YouTube
Carly Rae Jepsen - Kiss
Everyone was talking about it, so I decided to give it a chance. I won't waste too much time on this. It sucks. I really don't understand why people like this crap--and I'm a big pop music fan.
Carly Rae Jepsen - Call Me Maybe - YouTube
The Killers - Battle Born
When they first came out, I was really excited about them. Unfortunately, they haven't evolved as much as I would've hoped. It's (much) better than Sam's Town but not as good as Day & Age. But if you liked either of those, you'll find enough to like about Battle Born.
The Killers - Runaways - YouTube
Low Cut Connie - Call Me Sylvia
If I had to single out an album I thought the board would enjoy, it might be this one. They hold no punches and pack a ton of fun. They refer to themselves as a self-deprecating bar band if that gives you any idea of what to expect. They're a lot more than that, though.
Boozophilia - LOW CUT CONNIE - YouTube
Aimee Mann - Charmer
This was highly recommended to me by a friend of mine. We have very similar tastes in music, so I figured I'd love this one like he does. It didn't happen, though. There are a few great songs, but that's about all this had to offer me. She has done worse than this before, but this is the worst it has been in a very long time. However, I love the inclusion of Tom Scharpling in this video.
Aimee Mann - Charmer - YouTube
Dave Matthews Band - Away from the World
Although I'm not into this scene, DMB always found a way to play songs that I could appreciate. The album flows very well with impressive production. Dave Matthews aside, this is the best the band has sounded in a long time. It's a very good album that will seem even better if you liked Dave Matthews Band in the first place.
Dave Matthews Band - Mercy - YouTube
Mika - The Origin of Love
It's more of the same from Mika, who you might remember from "Big Girl (You Are Beautiful)". It's a decent pop album reminiscent of a modernized Freddy Mercury. It doesn't get my strongest recommendation, but if you're into catchy pop, it's worth a shot.
Mika - Elle Me Dit (clip officiel) - YouTube
Mumford & Sons - Babel
One of RZ's favorites, they're back and as good as ever. I don't need to say much about it except that it's what you'd expect: a very good album.
Mumford & Sons - I Will Wait - YouTube
Ne-Yo - R.E.D.
Ne-Yo's last couple albums were excellent, so I was really looking forward to this. Unfortunately, he took a big step backwards on this one. It's not without its highlights, but for the first time, I heard songs from him that I would describe as "chaffe". Still, it's better than a lot of his peers' work, so if you're into it, check it out.
Ne-Yo - Let Me Love You (Until You Learn To Love Yourself) - YouTube
No Doubt - Push and Shove
This didn't sound as much like No Doubt as I would've hoped. It sounded more like Gwen Stefani throwing the rest of the band a bone. It's not bad, but I can't come up with many reasons to listen to it either.
No Doubt - Settle Down - YouTube
Amanda Palmer & the Grand Theft Orchestra - Theatre Is Evil
Controversy over the most petty things has surrounded this album. The concerns over money are justified, but it apparently didn't stop them from making a very good rock album. This is one of my favorite albums on this list.
Amanda Palmer and the Grand Theft Orchestra 'Want It Back' (Official Video)(Uncensored) - YouTube
Pink - The Truth about Love
Say what you will about Pink, but she finds a way to separate herself from the other pop stars out there. I wouldn't say she's particularly talented, but she has enough self-awareness and taste to see that going the Britney Spears route isn't for her. This is a decent power-pop album with a few good singles. It's neither terrible nor great--just somewhere in the middle.
P!nk - Blow Me (One Last Kiss) - YouTube
The Sheepdogs - s/t
They're Canada's answer to The Black Keys. Their self-titled 2nd album debuted at #1 up there. It's a solid record, but it's no Black Keys--that's for sure.
The Sheepdogs - The Way It Is [Official Music Video] - YouTube
The Vaccines - Come of Age
What Did You Expect from the Vaccines? was one of my favorite albums from last year, and they're already back with another album that does it justice. This one's equally as good, so if you enjoyed the last one, you need to check it out. But if you're in England, odds are you already have.
The Vaccines - No Hope - YouTube
The xx - Coexist
We've already talked quite a bit about this album. Their sound has gotten quieter, and the songwriting isn't quite what it was on their self-titled debut, but it doesn't seem fair to word it that way because their debut was so great. All in all, it's an impressive album that sounds great on rainy days.
The xx - Angels - YouTube