As fun as it is to complain about “music these days,” and how it’s all been downhill since The Chronic came out, it’s even MORE fun to listen to — wait for it — good music. Every Tuesday, a.k.a. Music Release Day, we’ll highlight five albums worth (legally) downloading or driving to the local Best Buy (lolz) for.
Today, we've got selections from Godspeed You! Black Emperor, Pinback, and more.
Allelujah! Don't Bend! Ascend! by Godspeed You! Black Emperor
No one should have expected a fourth Godspeed You! Black Emperor album, even after the band halted their seven-year hiatus in 2010 and began playing body-rattling live shows again. Sure, it was great having them back — Lift Your Skinny Fists Like Antennas to Heaven is a modern masterpiece — but another album seemed out of the question. Then, out of the blue earlier this month, it was announced Godspeed had been selling copies of what would later be known as 'Allelujah! Don't Bend! Ascend! at their concerts, and two weeks later (today!), it's now out for the rest of us, ready to be explored and mystified by.
Simply put, it's fantastic. It's gorgeous. It's baffling. It's anarchistic. It's a Godspeed You! Black Emperor album, one that begins with a 20-minute post-rock drone that's majestic, yet forceful. There aren't "songs" so much as there's a sonic thread that you're left following for 53 minutes, yet interest never wains; you're too caught up in each pluck, each snap, each crack. It's a powerful revival for a band that no one had any expectations for, yet even if the members of Godspeed had been discussing 'Allelujah! for years, it still would have lived up to its hype.
Deleted Scenes by Blueprint
Leftovers from last year's diverse Adventures In Counter-Culture, from a true student of hip-hop, that probably should have made an album the first time 'round. There's even a cover of Radiohead's "Packt Like," if you want to do a Kid A/Amnesiac comparison.
Information Retrieved by Pinback
The indie rock mainstays have mastered the slow build, whether it be in their career (it's been five years since the last album) or in their songs, which often start slowly before popping out of the speakers with something somehow resembling both comforting warmth and chilling melancholy.
Country, God, or the Girl by K'NAAN
For more K'NAAN and his radio-friendly, positive hip-hop, check out the Smoking Section.
Dethalbum III by Dethklok
The third album for Metalocalypse's resident heavy metal band goes a little something like this: