by: Josh Cabrera
Shannon and the Clams - Dreams In The Rat House (Hardly Art)
A modern rock throwback to 50+60s doo-wap with a punky power-chord twist, Shannon and the Clams get you swaying and singing, jumping and screaming, dancing and raging in one fell swoop with Dreams In The Rat House. Like a food fight at prom, this album leaves in its wake a glamorous mess in the best way possible.
Pure X - Crawling Up The Stairs (Acephale)
Pure X demonstrates what it's like to explore a dark room with a three piece band in their album Crawling Up The Stairs. Laden with strolling bass lines, ethereal guitar effects, dreamlike vocals, and melancholy lyrics, the album shines a darker hue in its rather sullen tracks and levels it out with more uptempo dream-pop forays. This lends the album a unique balance of somber introspection and airy wandering amidst a hazy musical vista.
Wampire - Curiosity (Polyvinyl)
With catchy bass lines and a groovy synth-rock psychedelic mix, Wampire puts out a solid debut album with Curiosity. Upbeat and dreamy, this record has plenty of songs waiting to be hits. You'll be singing and jamming along to this as soon as you hit play.
Saturday Looks Good To Me - One Kiss Ends It All (Polyvinyl)
Indie pop-rock with soothing vocals from new vocalist Carol Gray. One Kiss Ends It All is a dynamic album that takes some surprising turns. Synth and well-placed brass overlay a very poppy escapade of indie guitar riffs, smooth bass lines, and upbeat drums.
The Rouge - Blurry (Atlantic)
Powerful vocals set the foreground of an indie album with a classic rock and roll feel. Spaced out by an acoustic gem in Sinners, Blurry is a promising beginning for The Rouge.
Gypsy and the Cat - The Late Blue (Alsatian)
Take flight with Gypsy and the Cat's The Late Blue. Complimented by airy vocals in front of minimalist drumming, this album starts off with some dance-worthy tracks remniscent of MGMT and transitions smoothly into a light indie-rock album with the occasional melodic synth accompaniment.
Sam Amidon - Bright Sunny South (Nonesuch)
Low vocals with a slight country twang and soft acoustic guitar that plucks at your heartstrings are backed by the occasional use of subtle strings, brass, and woodwinds. Somewhere between somber and uplifting lies Bright Sunny South.
Moon King - Obsession II (One Big Silence)
Rock-based drumming and guitar riffs are complimented by dream-like synthesizer melodies in this album which makes great use of electronic vocal effects. Opens up with an A-side that'll make you wanna dance and a B-side that shows off Moon King's more subtle dynamic musical abilities.