New Music Reviews (10/10)

Album Reviews

Each week, Music Director Don Yates (joined this week by DJ Alex) shares brief insights on new and upcoming releases for KEXP's rotation. These reviews help our DJs decide on what they want to play. See what we added this week below (and on our Charts page), including new releases from Alvvays, BjörkTSHA, and more. 

Alvvays – Blue Rev (Polyvinyl)
This Toronto band’s third album (and first in five years) is an excellent set of punchy, hook-filled indie-pop with fuzzy/jangly guitars, bright synths, energetic rhythms, soaring harmonies, sparkling melodies and lyrics of desire, loss and regret. — DY

Björk – fossora (One Little Independent)
This veteran Icelandic artist’s 10th solo album is a powerful set of avant chamber-pop with a dark, bass-heavy sound featuring keyboards, strings, bass clarinet, flute, trombone, oboe, a variety of percussion and occasional pounding electronic rhythms, choral harmonies and more accompanying her dynamic, impassioned vocals and mushroom-inspired lyrics revolving around motherhood, loss, mortality and renewal. — DY

TSHA – Capricorn Sun (Ninja Tune)
The debut full-length from this London-based DJ/producer (aka Teisha Matthews) is an impressive set of warm, hook-filled electronic grooves with propulsive house rhythms, shimmering synths, piano, occasional steel drum samples, looped soulful vocal samples and often-euphoric song hooks. — DY

Sorry – Anywhere But Here (Domino)
This London band’s second album is an expansive set of often-bleak rock ranging from propulsive, dance-friendly rock, woozy psych-pop and ominous post-punk to hypnotic, shapeshifting rock and doom-laden grunge ballads, with many of the songs featuring often-dark lyrics of heartache, anxiety and alienation. — DY

George Riley – Running In Waves (PLZ Make It Ruins)
Following her breakout 2021 debut mixtape interest rates, a tape, London-based vocalist George Riley teams up with enigmatic producer Vegyn for her second release and it's another impressive set of expansive R&B that ranges from swelling orchestral ballads to skittering club-tinted jams for a wide-ranging sound reminiscent of Kelela and Dawn Richard. — AR

NNAMDÏ – Please Have a Seat (Sooper/Secretly Canadian)
The sixth official full-length from this Chicago artist of Nigerian heritage is an adventurous set of playful, shapeshifting avant-pop ranging from cinematic psych-pop and intricate math-rock to astral R&B, quirky trap and much more. — DY

Say She She – Prism (Karma Chief)
The debut album from this Brooklyn-based trio composed of Piya Malik (frequent collaborator with El Michels Affair and former backing singer for Chicano Batman), Sabrina Mileo Cunningham, and Nya Gazelle Brown is a stellar set of throwback "discodelic soul" that captures a magnetic brew of nostalgic R&B, timeless funk, fuzzy disco, and the pristine pop of 1970's girl groups. Prism gets assists from current and former members of the Dap-Kings, The Extraordinaires, Orgone, The Shacks, Chicano -*Batman, Antibalas, and more. — AR

Gabriels – Angels & Queens: Part 1 (Atlas Artists)
This LA-based trio follow up two acclaimed EPs with the first part of their debut full-length. Produced by Kendrick Lamar collaborator Sounwave, the release features seven masterfully crafted songs of cinematic soul and funk, combining piano, synths, strings, brass and more with Jacob Lusk’s intimate, falsetto-laden vocals and lyrics of love, desire, loss and heartache. — DY

Indigo Sparke – Hysteria (Sacred Bones)
This New York-based Australian artist’s second album is a beautifully crafted set of intimate, sometimes psych-tinged folk-pop. Produced by The National’s Aaron Dessner, the album combines acoustic and electric guitars, atmospheric keyboards and other instrumentation with wistful melodies and personal lyrics of love and loss. — DY

King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard – Ice, Death, Planet, Lungs, Mushrooms and Lava (KGLW)
This prolific Australian band’s latest release is an adventurous set of prog-tinged psych-rock with mostly lengthy songs featuring a shape-shifting, jam-oriented blend of electric guitars, organ, flute and other instrumentation with buoyant harmonies and magnetic song hooks. — DY

George FitzGerald – Stellar Drifting (Double Six)
The third full-length album from South London producer, musician, and songwriter George FitzGerald is another sharp set of immersive, elegant, exceptionally-produced electronic-pop that balances hypnotic club-ready rhythms with strong vocal-pop flourishes. Panda Bear, SOAK, and London Grammar make guest appearances. — AR

Disq – Desperately Imagining Someplace Quiet (Saddle Creek)
This Madison, WI band’s second album is a diverse, well-crafted set ranging from ‘90s-steeped slacker rock and emotive power-pop to hypnotic dance-rock and jangly folk-pop. — DY

Courtney Marie Andrews – Loose Future (Fat Possum)
The eighth album from this Phoenix-bred, Nashville-based artist features a brighter, more psych-tinged take on her melancholy folk-pop. Produced by Sam Evian with accompaniment from Bonny Light Horseman multi-instrumentalist Josh Kaufman and Grizzly Bear drummer Chris Bear, the album combines twinkling synths, atmospheric guitars, strings, pedal steel and more with her gently quavering vocals and personal lyrics of love, heartache and hope. — DY

Sam Gellaitry – VF VOL II (FFRR)
The latest mixtape from Scottish musician Sam Gellaitry finds him continuing to expand upon his prodigious production talents by tackling a genre-blurring, pop-leaning, vocal-laced sound that consistently delivers. While his masterful beats and intricate production wizardry are still on full display, his growing confidence as a vocalist and songwriter flourishes here with a handful of addictive electronic-pop anthems. — AR

THUS LOVE – Memorial (Captured Tracks)
This Brattleboro, VT trans trio’s debut album is a potent set of ‘80s-steeped post-punk with jangly guitars, atmospheric keyboards, driving rhythms, dramatic vocals and lyrics of loss, acceptance and resilience. — DY

Mura Masa – demon time (Anchor Point/Polydor)
The third album from London-based producer Mura Masa (aka Alex Crossan) is a stellar set of expansive rhythmic pop inflected with hip-hop, house, d'n'b, reggaeton, dancehall, and other colorful styles that finds him tapping into a mischievous, libidinous, brash spirit. A talented cast of guest vocalists – Erika de Casier, Lil Uzi Vert, PinkPantheress, Shygirl, slowthai, Channel Tres, Isabella Lovestory, LEILAH, Tohiji, Pa Salieu, Skillibeng, and more – help add their own style to his cool, colorful, genre-bouncing sound. — AR

Nora O’Connor – My Heart (Pravda)
This Chicago artist’s third solo album (and first in 18 years) is a well-crafted set of warm, hook-filled folk-pop combining acoustic and electric guitars, piano, organ and more with her honeyed, soulful vocals and lyrics of love and heartache. — DY

Dungen – En Är För Mycket och Tusen Aldrig Nog (Mexican Summer)
The eighth studio album from this veteran Swedish project spearheaded by Gustav Ejstes is an adventurous set of expansive psych-rock ranging from pounding, fuzz-encrusted rockers to propulsive, drum ‘n’ bass-influenced psych-pop, bossa nova dream-pop and much more. — DY

Ruth Radelet – The Other Side EP (Like LTD/Gweilo)
The debut EP from this LA-based former Chromatics vocalist is a strong five-song set of atmospheric dream-pop combining synths, guitars, piano, violin and more with her breathy, ethereal vocals, haunting melodies and lyrics of love, loss, death and rebirth. — DY

Bonny Light Horseman – Rolling Golden Holy (37d03d)
This New York trio’s second album is a well-crafted set of atmospheric folk-pop combining acoustic and occasional electric guitars, synths, piano, organ, banjo, mandolin, dulcimer, saxophone, harmonica and more with warm harmonies and lyrics of love and loss. — DY

Peter Matthew Bauer – Flowers (Fortune Tellers)
The third solo album from this LA-based member of The Walkmen is a fine set of folk-tinged psych-pop combining ringing guitars, atmospheric keyboards and muscular, energetic rhythms with lyrics of anxiety and alienation. — DY

Johanna Warren – Lessons For Mutants (Carpark/Wax Nine)
The sixth album from this Wales-based American artist is a well-crafted set ranging from bittersweet folk-pop and shimmering psych-tinged dream-pop to hook-filled grunge-pop, combining guitars, piano, strings and more with lyrics of loss and acceptance. — DY

Peel Dream Magazine – Pad (Slumberland)
The third Peel Dream Magazine album from LA-via-New York artist Joseph Stevens is a well-crafted set of gentle, folk-tinged psych-pop combining shimmering synths, nylon string guitar, Farfisa organ, strings, chimes and more with breezy melodies, hushed vocals and lyrics of isolation and identity. — DY

saib. – Unwind (Jakarta)
The 5th album (and Jakarta debut) from Casablanca-born, Berlin-based beat producer and guitarist saib. (aka Hamza Saib) is a blissful set of blunted hip-hop beats that stands out within the "lo-fi instrumental beats" world with its smart jazz samples, sleek organic instrumentation, and intoxicating breezy atmospherics. Legendary MC Masta Ace appears on album highlight "Pennywise." — AR

Coco Peila – Confessions of a Black Feminist Rapper Part 3: Elevate (Miss Behave)
This Oakland rapper’s latest release is a solid eight-song set of hip hop, R&B and spoken word combining a variety of bumping beats with rhymes of self-worth. Taj Mahal guests on three songs. — DY

Shoko Igarashi – Simple Sentences (Tigersushi)
The debut album from this Japan-born, Brussels-based electronic producer, saxophonist, and composer is an inventive set of bright, idiosyncratic, anime-inspired electronic beats that blends a fascination with City Pop and Warp Records' 90s-era techno for a lightly psychedelic and kitschy vibe. — AR

United Freedom Collective – Am Ta EP (Dama Dama)
This British group’s debut EP is a diverse five-song set of groove-driven songs ranging from traditional Amazonian icaros to moody electro-pop. — DY

Ela Minus & DJ Python – EP (Smugglers Way)
This short-and-sweet collaborative EP from Colombian-born, Brooklyn-based artist Ela Minus (aka Gabriela Jimeno) and Brooklyn-based artist DJ Python (aka Brian Piñyero) is a charming set of dreamy synth-pop that pairs DJ Python's unique ambient-soaked, IDM-tinted, reggaeton-inspired productions with Ela Minus' hypnotic vocals. — AR

Bodysync – BIG WOOF EP (self-released)
Fresh off the release of their buoyant debut album Radio Active in April, this collaborative project between Ryan Hemsworth and Giraffage quickly return with another colorful, carefree, addictive set of joyful dancefloor jams that blend classic house influences with fresh R&B and 90s pop flourishes. — AR

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