Buoyed by classic pop-punk deference to power chords and the exhilarating drumming of Travis Barker, Love Sux brings the energy up to a 10 almost immediately and rarely turns it down across the album’s 33 minutes. Lead single “Bite Me” stands out as some of the angriest, loudest songs of Lavigne’s career.
Themes of loss, hope, isolation and renewal echo throughout Midlake’s fifth full-length (their first since 2013’s Antiphon). It's an album with tremendous thematic and sonic reach, produced to layered, loving perfection by John Congleton. It’s a record full of immersive warmth and mystery from a band of ardent seekers, one of our generation’s finest.
After a string of acclaimed releases in the early 90’s, the band issued a pair of albums which took over alternative radio creating a whirlwind of a decade for the band. It wasn’t until 2011 that the world would hear new Urge Overkill music, when the band released Rock & Roll Submarine. Now, a decade later, is the world ready for more? There is only one answer: Oui.
Dashboard Confessional’s ninth studio album is both a remarkable renewal and fortunate step forward for the band’s songwriter, front man, and founder, Chris Carrabba. It stands among Carrabba’s finest – a strikingly potent musical look at himself through a rediscovered keyhole, both an achievement of vision and a vital burst of artistic clarity; less like reading someone’s diary and more like reading their eyes.
This is a return to simple pleasures, nature, and an embracing more pared down, songwriterly sonics, all while asking broader existential questions: which feels at least somewhat rooted in the period of time during which it was made – 2020. Through the tumultuous ebb and flow of the years, Joe Mount’s ability as a songwriter, arranger and producer shines through on Small World, evergreen.
What started as a casual 2020 session with BennySings (whom the musician previously worked with on his 2017 platinum-selling breakout single “Loving Is Easy”), ended up producing Who Cares? -- a playful record by an artist in a playful mood. The album also finds Rex reunited with Tyler, TheCreator, marking the first time the two have collaborated since Tyler's 2017 album Flower Boy.
Following up on 2021’s highly acclaimed HologramEP, the rebooted lineup delivers an overclocked set of futuristic electronic punk music encoded with punishing industrial rhythms, swirling voltage-starved guitars and unclassifiable auditory annihilation. See Through You is proof-positive that the group hailed as “The Loudest Band in New York” is still finding new ways to push the needle deeper in the red.
GhostSong, Cécile McLorin Salvant’s Nonesuch debut, features a diverse mix of seven originals and five interpretations on the themes of ghosts, nostalgia, and yearning. Salvant says, “It’s unlike anything I’ve done before—it’s getting closer to reflecting my personality as an eclectic curator. I’m embracing my weirdness!”
Red-leather-clad and pitchfork-wielding in a playful nod to Grant Wood’s celebrated painting of 1930, Mattiel proffer songs which ponder the American everyday of the 2020s, serving up an album tasting more like home than ever before. Georgia Gothic was shaped by time spent together on the road touring the first two albums - and the newfound sense of intimacy that enabled the writing as one creative entity.
Although the album is eclectic - influences range from American minimalism and contemporary classical, to drawing upon the legacy of Britain’s alternative scenes, from drum ‘n’ bass to Britpop -- it’s equally rooted in Le’aupepe’s Samoan heritage, with the majority of tracks featuring sampled recordings of indigenous music from the Polynesian islands and the wider South Pacific.
Rooted in Krautrock and early electronic music, with influence from artists like Kraftwerk, Laurie Spiegel, and Cluster, A Way Forward feels even more like a journey, something that can be followed from start to finish with greater emotional peaks and valleys and new sonic landscapes being explored. The highs are higher, the lows are lower, and there's a palpable gratitude of the ability to be present in the right now.
On Bakar's first full-length, you’ll find a melting pot of indie, rap, rock, and punk with the young musician even labelling his music style as "schizophrenic.” In an interview with Complex, the UK artist explained his iconic sound, "If people saw me and presumed the kind of music I make, 90% of them would say rap or hip-hop. I could be on every single playlist and feel at home there.”
Maita allows for heavier, cathartic moments to reach new intensities, using a palette of warm, distorted guitars, and driving drums to create indie-rock landscapes that are catchy yet unfettered. The softer, more vulnerable moments find their counterpart with subtle, layered, folk-inspired tracks that showcase songwriter Maria Maita-Keppeler's lyricism with cinematic touches of grand piano and pedal steel guitar.
Nilüfer Yanya runs head first into the depths of emotional vulnerability. Painless is a more sonically direct effort, narrowing her previously broad palette to a handful of robust ideas. Yanya's debut album Miss Universe (2019) earned a Best New Music tag from Pitchfork and saw support tours with Sharon Van Etten, Mitski & The XX. *Available on Limited Edition Indie Exclusive Cloudy Blue Vinyl*
Cole changes his approach in several ways here, breaking away somewhat from his personal storytelling style in favor of more wordplay and complexly constructed bars while also foregoing his usual "no features" approach, collaborating with multiple artists (21 Savage, Lil Baby, Diddy) throughout. Much like the title suggests,it feels like Cole running through different exercises as he gets in shape for something bigger.
Celebrating 10 years since they first recorded together, Bennett & Gaga returned to the studio for another collaboration featuring the best of the Cole Porter songbook. Continuing the musical legacy that began with “Lady Is A Tramp,” followed by the Grammy-winning Cheek To Cheek, this new recording captures the evolution of the singular creative and personal relationship of these two world famous artists.
Featuring the mega-hit “Drivers License,” There are no filler tracks here, with each song representing a different side to Rodrigo’s artistry, embracing every influence that’s shaped her music, while still creating something fresh. Sour is a collection of polished, precociously accomplished pop that doubles as one of the most gratifyingly undignified breakup albums ever made.
Continuing the tradition on from her multi-GRAMMY Award, record-breaking debut album When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?, Happier Than Ever features no outside songwriters or producers, and was written by the then 19-year-old Billie Eilish and her brother Finneas who produced the album in Los Angeles. The album includes Top 40 #1 single “Therefore I Am” and “My Future.”
Optimist presents a more straightforward, adult contemporary spin on the sound Finneas has crafted with sister, Billie Eilish,(gaining 24 Grammys along the way). Here, O’Connell trades out most of the jazz, bedroom-pop, and electronics while keeping the maudlin mood and vaguely alternative edge.
While shockingly upbeat, Rare is an act of divine ruthlessness, full of dance-y, mid-tempo clarity. It’s a beautifully confident return from one of pop's most underrated stars, and a quietly defiant wrestling back of the narrative surrounding Gomez. Featuring the #1 single, “Lose You To Love Me.”
Sounding more like Seattle, but coming from Southern California, the 4-piece post-hardcore/emo outfit Movements have marked their place with their debut EP Outgrown Things. Poignant lyrics, that come across more as spoken word poetry at times, paired with haunting guitar riffs and powerful drums that nail the point home. *Available on Limited Edition Indie Exclusive 10" Beer Color Vinyl*
The alt/prog/electro-rock outfit continues its voyage through the captivating science fiction narrative with Horizons, a cinematic soundscape that accompanies the listener through pain, love, descent, and triumph. The world has been consumed by synthetic methods of escaping reality, and it is with this technology that we are able to explore life through other users' experiences — finally, the ability to be someone else.
Life On Earth’s “nature punk” tracks on the theme of survival are music for a world in flux—songs about thriving, not just surviving, while disaster is happening. For her eighth full-length album, AlyndaSegarra drew inspiration from The Clash, Beverly Glenn-Copeland, Bad Bunny, and the author of Emergent Strategy, Adrienne Maree Brown. *Available on Limited Edition Indie Exclusive Clear Vinyl*
Some forty years into one of music’s most impactful partnerships, Tears For Fears have arrived together at The Tipping Point – the group’s ambitious, accomplished and surprising first new studio album in nearly two decades. An inspired song cycle that vividly recalls the depth and emotional force of the group’s earliest triumphs, The Tipping Point is the bold, beautiful and powerful sound of Tears For Fears finding themselves together all over again.
Ghost, one of the most esteemed and celebrated rock bands in the world today, return with their fifth psalm, Impera, fronted by the newly anointed Papa Emeritus IV. A dozen songs take on themes of isolation and demigod worship, as well as colonization of both space and mind. And all with the infectious hooky brand of rock their fans have grown accustomed.
The Coalition of Independent Music Stores (CIMS) is a national level organization comprised of the best independent record stores in America. CIMS was founded in 1995 with the goal of uniting like minded independent store owners, giving them a more powerful voice in the music industry. The stores that make up CIMS are all very different, but we share the same desires – to be the heart of our communities, to super-serve our customers, to support and develop artists, and to share our love of music.
For more information about CIMS and the stores in our organization, please visit cimsmusic.com or find us through social media with the #cimsmusic hashtag. And please remember to always shop local by supporting your neighborhood record store.