Some April albums believe we spend too much time asleep, numb, or otherwise preoccupied. Blurring certainties, revved cyber-devils MASERATI‘s machine-tooled cool, “Enter The Mirror,” and arena dreamers ENTER SHIKARI‘s searing stereophonic sincerity, “Nothing Is True & Everything Is Possible,” confuse with dubious ruses. Meanwhile throbbing time-bombs GAYTHEIST‘s incendiary thunder-punk, “How Long Have I Been On Fire?” and bayou boogie bandits SATIN NICKEL‘s stomping swamp waltzes, “Shadow of Doubt,” happily gaslight.
Anna Burch - If You’re Dreaming
Album title: If You’re Dreaming
Record Label: Polyvinyl
Sturdy songs melted over prolonged reconnaissance, “Dreaming,” tag-teams well-timed rhymes and fearless experience, saintly refrains atop tranquilized pain balancing subtle moods with catchy tunes, sly asides and sunny summaries. Lovely, lulling, logical, Burch works hard to sound easy, conjuring nurtured words with exacting facts and sage phrases detailing shiny lives swimming in simmered wisdom, folk-pop picking and sweet, recital-hall melancholy.
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Adult. - Perception is/as/of Deception
Album title: Perception is/as/of Deception
Record Label: Dais
New Wave roof-raisers and self-inflicted switch-flippers, ADULT. oscillate in primitive doomsday synths, bleak sequenced frequencies seizing ominous bounce-house romps for jet-propelled helter-skelter posing as stroboscopic pop. Baited, serrated and arpeggiated into diabolical molecules glued to dreary sneers, commanding stanzas and sadistic mystery, “Perception,” raves with infectious kinetics, unstoppable propaganda wearily delirious, propped up by low-cost robotics whirling at dangerous angles.
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Braids - Shadow Offering
Album title: Shadow Offering
Record Label: Secret City
Luscious skullduggery hugs, “Shadow,” with REM sleep temperament, unrequited insight and fevered inquiry controlling unfolding emotions in wild strides and lover’s leaps; sweetened secrets creeping among bruising truths torn and reborn in vivacious vocals, push-button percussion and majestic melodies. Self-examining Canadians, Braids’ determined urgency consolidates personal journeys into bewitched conflicts, stockpiling peak feelings from misty memories seeking an uneasy peace.
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Sir Richard Bishop - Oneiric Formulary
Album title: Oneiric Formulary
Record Label: Drag City
A renaissance man on the guitar, the adventurous Bishop flits from continents to cultures with textbook dexterity imposed on a squirrelly curiosity whose wide reach encompasses ancient sanctuaries, midnight markets and alien landscapes. A roadmap for swirling dervishes sizzling in sinister sound-pictures and tipsy gypsies reenacting immaculate bacchanalia, “Oneiric,” honors, channeling agile talent alongside an encyclopedic appreciation for international passions.
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Purity Ring - Womb
Album title: Womb
Record Label: 4AD
Infused in slippery grooves coveting uprooted muses and VR fantasies, “Womb,” wraps studio-flavored layers around cellophane sounds from enticing sequined sirens luring with glitch-inflicted purrs, space-age reverb and slow lubricated bass. Cotton-candy mantras from ocean ghosts patrolling distant discos, Purity Ring hints, winks and whispers inside hovering nightclubs, sub-orbital appointments prowling around holographic clouds cradling electro-pop angels and trip-hop rainbows.
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Hazel English - Wake UP!
Album title: Wake UP!
Record Label: Polyvinyl
Traveling from Australia to San Francisco to L.A., English’s nomadic panache unpacked a hearty appetite for hip trips and swinging flings flung from wonderful wall-of-sound Rapunzels. Castanets, glockenspiels and tympanis mixed in driving beats, multi-layered jangle and heartbroken vocals evoke vintage late-sixties torch-song symphonies in the cool, moody, “Wake,” a swooning musical cocoon nestled in nostalgia and lifted in longing.
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Spring albums say accept the fact that facts have become unacceptable. So grab some gusto with brainy busker BRETT NEWSKI‘s cheeky hookfest, “Don’t Let The Bastards Get You Down,” mix-master RJD2‘s thick-sliced funk, “The Fun Ones,” and avant-folk stoic JAMES ELKINGTON‘s unforgettable fretwork, “Ever-Roving Eye.” Raise Cain alongside elegant art-song sentimentalist RUFUS WAINWRIGHT‘s sophisticated play, “Unfollow the Rules,” folk-soul high-rollers EZRA BELL‘s woozy, groovy, “This Way to Oblivion,” resplendent indie-gentlemen TRACE MOUNTAINS’ roadside revelations, “Lost In The Country,” and gonzo-rockers THE LOVELY EGGS’ quizzical psycho-punk riddles, “I Am A Moron.”