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new kexp album reviews

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New Album Reviews:

case/lang/veirs: case/lang/veirs
Buy! - (Anti-)
The debut album from this collaboration between Neko Case, k.d. lang and Laura Veirs is an impressive set of intimate folk-pop. Produced by Tucker Martine, the album features a warm, beautifully crafted sound and some gorgeous, mostly acoustic instrumentation on songs ranging from soaring, jangly pop to melancholy torch ballads. 6/24/2016 - Don Yates

Lisa Prank: Adult Teen
Buy! - (Father/Daughter)
The debut full-length from this Seattle-via-Denver one-woman-band (aka Robin Edwards) is a strong set of lo-fi garage-pop with buzzsaw Ramones guitars, peppy drum-machine beats, bubblegum melodies and clever, big-hearted lyrics exploring the ins and outs of love. 6/24/2016 - Don Yates

Mitski: Puberty 2
Buy! - (Dead Oceans)
The fourth album from this New York-based artist (aka Mitski Miyawaki) is her strongest release to date, combining a diverse sound ranging from grungy punk to atmospheric dream-pop with her smartly crafted, angst-fueled lyrics on often-dark, emotionally devastating songs. 6/24/2016 - Don Yates

Other Mitski album reviews:

Bury Me At Makeout Creek - 3/20/2015

Weval: Weval
Buy! - (Kompakt)
This Dutch duo's debut full-length is an excellent set of warm, emotive electronic grooves featuring a variety of deep house beats propelled by sampled drums and heavy bass lines along with moody synths and sampled and occasional live vocals. 6/24/2016 - Don Yates

Margaret Glaspy: Emotions and Math
Buy! - (ATO)
This New York-based artist's debut full-length is a strong set of smartly crafted, stripped-down rock and folk-pop, featuring a raw, spare sound combining rumbling, gritty guitars and twisty melodies with her elastic vocals and emotionally complex lyrics of love and relationships. 6/24/2016 - Don Yates

Still Parade: Concrete Vision
Buy! - (Lefse)
The debut album from Berlin-based musician Niklas Kramer (aka Still Parade) is an excellent set of dreamy, superbly-crafted psych-pop with a warm nostalgic touch and light, funky beats. Quality top-to-bottom. 6/24/2016 - Alex

Deerhoof: The Magic
Buy! - (Polyvinyl)
This Bay Area band's latest album is one of their most visceral releases, with a raw, electric sound incorporating elements of punk, glam-rock, metal, funk, doo wop and more. 6/24/2016 - Don Yates

Alice Bag: Alice Bag
Buy! - (Don Giovanni)
Alice Bag (aka Alicia Armendariz) was a member of the pioneering late '70s-era LA punk-rock duo The Bags. She went on to play with a string of other bands, and now she's releasing her solo debut. It's an impressive, politically charged blend of raging garage-punk, '60s girl-group pop, Spanish ballads and more, combining a raw but brightly melodic sound with her often-acerbic lyrics aimed at date rapists, corporate malefactors and other deserving targets. 6/24/2016 - Don Yates

PAWS: No Grace
Buy! - (FatCat)
This Scottish band brings a more massive and polished sound to their third album for a first-rate set of anthemic, hook-filled garage-pop reminiscent at times of Japandroids and Beach Slang, with ringing guitar riffs, punchy rhythms and soaring choruses. 6/24/2016 - Don Yates

Other PAWS album reviews:

Youth Culture Forever - 5/2/2014
Cokefloat! - 10/26/2012

Twin River: Passing Shade
Buy! - (Light Organ)
This Vancouver, BC band's second album is a strong set of hook-filled dream-pop inflected with surf, folk-rock and other styles, featuring a hazy, summery sound with fuzzy guitars, atmospheric keyboards, driving rhythms, melancholy lyrics and wistful melodies. 6/24/2016 - Don Yates

Puro Instinct: Autodrama
Buy! - (Manifesto)
The second album from the LA sister duo of Piper and Skylar Kaplan is a more polished, '80s synth pop-oriented take on their hazy dream-pop sound, combining shimmering synths, atmospheric guitars and drum-machine rhythms with ethereal harmonies and soaring melodies. 6/24/2016 - Don Yates

The Avett Brothers: True Sadness
Buy! - (American)
This North Carolina band's ninth album finds them broadening their folk-pop sound by incorporating more diverse instrumentation and more modern production (courtesy of Rick Rubin) on a variety of well-crafted songs reflecting on love, loss and faith. 6/24/2016 - Don Yates

Other Avett Brothers album reviews:

The Carpenter - 9/7/2012
I and Love and You - 9/22/2009
Emotionalism - 5/18/2007

Male Gaze: King Leer
Buy! - (Castle Face)
This San Francisco band brings a bit more brightness and melody to their gloomy post-punk sound on their second album for a more consistently strong set of songs combining fuzzy guitars, driving rhythms, morose vocals and memorable song hooks. 6/24/2016 - Don Yates

Yung: A Youthful Dream
Buy! - (Fat Possum)
The debut full-length from this young Danish band led by Mikkel Holm Silkjær is an impressive blend of anthemic post-punk and garage-rock reminiscent of The Replacements and Cloud Nothings, combining fuzzy, surging guitars, driving rhythms and potent song hooks. 6/10/2016 - Don Yates

Diarrhea Planet: Turn To Gold
Buy! - (Infinity Cat)
This Nashville band's excellent third album features a bigger, more polished sound for their hook-filled blend of punkish power-pop and epic hard rock, along with crisper, more sophisticated songs with monster guitar riffs, punchy rhythms, exuberant harmonies and fist-pumping song hooks. 6/10/2016 - Don Yates

Other Diarrhea Planet album reviews:

I'm Rich Beyond Your Wildest Dreams - 8/7/2013

Whitney: Light Upon The Lake
Buy! - (Secretly Canadian)
The debut album from this Chicago band led by former Smith Weterns members Julian Ehrlich and Max Kakacek is an excellent set of '70s-influenced folk-pop featuring a consistently strong set of beautifully arranged, melodically rich songs and a warm, summery sound combining sweetly twanging guitars, soulful horns and other instrumentation with plaintive falsetto vocals, breezy melodies and melancholy lyrics. 6/3/2016 - Don Yates

Mourn: Ha, Ha, He.
Buy! - (Captured Tracks)
This young Barcelona band's second album is a more expansive, diverse and sophisticated take on the band's '90s-influenced indie-rock, combining angular guitar lines and energetic rhythms with Jazz Rodriguez Bueno's expressive vocals and angst-fueled lyrics. 6/3/2016 - Don Yates

Other Mourn album reviews:

Mourn - 11/21/2014

Classixx: Faraway Reach
Buy! - (Innovative Leisure)
This LA production duo's second album is a well-crafted set of summery electro-pop with propulsive house and disco rhythms sparkling synths, occasional tropical textures, breezy melodies, often-dark lyrics and a solid lineup of guest vocalists including Passion Pit, How To Dress Well, T-Pain and De Lux. 6/3/2016 - Don Yates

Other Classixx album reviews:

Hanging Gardens - 5/3/2013

Steve Gunn: Eyes On The Lines
Buy! - (Matador)
This Brooklyn-based artist's impressive new album is his most streamlined and song-oriented to date, with a muscular, psych-tinged folk-rock sound that still leaves plenty of room for Gunn's expressive guitar work. 6/3/2016 - Don Yates

Minor Victories: Minor Victories
Buy! - (Fat Possum)
The debut album from this group comprised of Slowdive's Rachel Goswell, Mogwai's Stuart Braithwaite and Editors' Justin Lockey (along with his brother James) is a well-crafted set of brooding dream-pop featuring a dynamic, heavily atmospheric sound with shoegazerish guitars and cinematic strings accompanying Goswell's ethereal vocals. 6/3/2016 - Don Yates