Autumn signifies falling leaves, football, goddamn pumpkin spice and, perhaps best of all, an uptick in new music to wash away our summer sins and help us settle into new routines. A tip sheet, then, to soundtrack the season of turning leaves.
BEST BETS FOR AN UNCONVENTIONAL DANCE PARTY
(9/30 via Warp)
Citing danceable, nervy torchbearers Talking Heads, Björk, System of a Down (sure?) and Joy Division (see: album title) as inspiration, and digging into a well of such genre-bleeding collaborators as Evian Christ, Kelela, Petite Noir and the triple threat that is Earl Sweatshirt-Kendrick Lamar-and-Ab-Soul, Brown continues servitude as hip-hop’s unhinged jack-in-the-box.
(10/21 via Capitol)
Rainbow-grooved singles “Wow” and “Dreams” suggest a return to the giddy, oddball, genre-mash masterstroke Odelay, and we all know “Devil’s Haircut” is the sleeper hit on any party playlist, so.
Kero Kero Bonito
(10/21 via Double Denim)
KKB’s buoyant cross-brand of J-pop, gamer girl power and Katy Perry (one member of the trio moonlights as PC Music producer Kane West, to give an idea of cheekiness level), turns its debut full-length into an ideal soundtrack for every cool pre-pubescent’s birthday party, but also for the more fun-loving, bubblegum-chewing adults’ out there.
KEEPING IT LOCAL
Fist & Palm
(9/30 via Double Double Whammy)
Oliver Kalb’s solo project steps out of the bedroom, at least metaphorically, adding dashes of electronics and towering drum sequences to the orchestral retelling of a crumbled friendship. One vignette along the way takes a pit stop at beloved DIY venue Palisades (RIP), adding local cred to an universal theme.
High in Place
(9/30 via Captured Tracks)
It’s all relaxed tempos and meandering melodies that could’ve been lifted off a lost Sunset Sound studio demo from the 70s on EZTV’s sophomore effort, complete with the warmth of human daisies Jenny Lewis and Martin Courtney on guest vocals and guest guitar, respectively—a contrast to the album’s lyrical spotlight on our city’s deterioration and gentrification.
(9/30 via Tiny Engines)
Peter Katz of New York-based Peaer (pronounced “pair” or “pa-yer,” his Twitter bio encourages) is all about the facts. On standout single “Third Law” he low-key states Newton’s law of motion (that’s the one about there being equal and opposite reaction for every action) in plain but romantic language, not unlike Isaac Brock on Modest Mouse’s “3rd Planet,” pitting science and careful composition against emotional bursts. Fact: It’s an album you should hear.
IF YOU CAME OF AGE LISTENING TO AMERICAN FOOTBALL…
(10/21 via Polyvinyl)
…Well, you’re in luck. When the beloved emo powerhouse released what would be its first and last proper album from the depths of the Midwest 17 years ago, Twitter was a non-thing and Friends ruled water-cooler chatter—but with the early single “I’ve Been So Lost for So Long,” it seems as though the hearts and souls of Mike Kinsella and Co. have more or less stayed the same. Same probably goes for their fans.
Jimmy Eat World
(10/21 via RCA)
Listening to new material from big-hearted workhorses Jimmy Eat World, their latest since 2013’s Damage, may produce similar effects as listening to American Football, harkening back to the person you were (still are?) around the turn of the millennium, despite early hints of Integrity Blues not quite reaching the rallying-call levels of “The Middle.” But, hey, don’t write it off yet. It just takes some time… *fist pump*
(10/7 via Epitaph)
Or maybe, just maybe, we jumped the gun painting early-career Jimmy Eat World and American Football as the heyday of emotionally fueled guitar rock when there are kids—like a certain four from SoCal who call themselves Joyce Manor—with new songs so wounded but empathetic, they make a case for the heyday being right now.
RUMORS AND GUESSES
After nearly three years of silence from Canadian drum-guitar firecrackers Japandroids, a flurry of live shows have been announced for fall, including two dates this month at Knitting Factory (super sold out, suckers). Whether or not this means the follow-up to 2012’s Celebration Rock is imminent, we can’t say, but, taking a cue from the band’s anthemic drive, we’re willing it into being.
Run the Jewels
Since dropping one of the best albums of 2014, the political and bombastic Run the Jewels 2, we’ve been waiting with fist-and-chain hand gesture in place for Killer Mike and El-P’s return on RTJ 3, hinted to be released by the end of the year. Here’s hoping it makes it out before Election Day.
We’re getting old—you, me, and James. No one understands the unrelenting tick of the clock better than Mr. Murphy, so the sooner we can get our hands on this alleged new album from the resurrected LCD Soundsystem, the better for all involved.