July blossoms with music to grow by. Whether literate indie-sprite SPRING SUMMER’s thoughtful, “T.E.A.R.S.” or space-jamming ramrods HOOVERIIII’s psycho-fuzzy boogie, “A Round of Applause,” summer albums thrive and survive. Plant yourself alongside cataclysmic wizards PARTY DOZEN’s rip-roaring magilla, “The Real Work,” or molten manipulator LONELYTWIN’s limber synth-pop, “This End Has No Beginning,” before reaping math-punk ravagers BLACK MIDI’s eclectic tempest, “Hellfire,” and trippy folktronica songsmith RUSTY SANTOS’ funhouse, “High Reality.”
Standards - Fruit Town
Album title: Fruit Town
Record Label: Wax Bodega
Razor-sharp guitars kickstarting cross-stitched syncopation with prime number rumbles, pivoting duo Standards splinter thinking man’s panic, joyriding high-fiving and machine-tooled tomfoolery over pummeling thunder and dazzling flash. Whether cantering banjo somersaults or electric whammy-bar cartwheels, “Fruit,” produces fluid, flexible, prog-rock calisthenics; gracefully racing from collaborative lab-rat spasms to meticulous prog pop-quizzes firing surprising sparks with dizzying fissures riddling reliable designs.
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Alex The Astronaut - How To Grow A Sunflower Underwater
Album title: How To Grow A Sunflower Underwater
Record Label: Nettwerk
Happy bombast dashes in poppy puppy-dog philosophy as, “Sunflower,” gleefully releases mirthful bursts furnished in sturdy wording stirring cavalier feelings with feverish rhythms and ferocious whimsy. An infectious collector of monumental events born from ordinary discourse, ATA embraces day-to-day vitality, infusing adolescent ballads with ear-candy grooves, conversational melodies embellishing simple things with metaphysical court-jester grins, precocious hope and grand humanity.
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Naima Bock - Giant Palm
Album title: Giant Palm
Record Label: Sub Pop
Lit in tropical sauntering and baroque folk, Naima’s inquisitive indie-pop depictions delight in bright curios, cerebral themes seasoned in sensual connections and melodic narcotics. Bossa nova woven from placid jazz and infused in chamber-music nuance, “Palm,” lifts and lilts, breathing easily from yawning symphonics to flighty sighs, a casual mastery playfully majoring in simmering mysteries, moody perusal and measured pleasures.
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Elf Power - Artificial Countrysides
Album title: Artificial Countrysides
Record Label: Yep Roc
Subtle chords poured over chiming timebomb rhymes, “Artificial,” imparts strangely pragmatic magic with soft prophecies monitored in indie-rock objectivity, earnest doubt sensing ephemeral peril and spouting concrete lyrics hiding oblique secrets. Generated from structured percussion, hounded bass and synchronized synthesizers, Elf Power’s deadpan candor lands methodical thoughts caught in unstoppable clockwork swarming around elusive proofs, descriptive lists and existential chemistry.
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Stephen Peter Rodgers - Speck On A Clover
Album title: Speck On A Clover
Record Label: Unfinished Hearts Records
Level-headed perspective and unflappable affirmations glide in effortless epitaphs and sensible aphorisms while Rodgers unlocks smart hearts with cautious pop-rock optimism and folksy stoic motivators; well-tended scenarios whose sensitive cleverness yield common sense served with disarming charm. Wise advice dispensed in catchy choruses lecturing from precipices, “Clover,” hones tender empathy through various tuneful ruses, playing observer, participant, mentor and friend.
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Florist - Florist
Album title: Florist
Record Label: Double Double Whammy
Suspended in low-gravity ambience, the self-titled, “Florist,” explores musical feng sui, twinkling trinkets sequenced between golden electro-folk, precious bubbles of breathless beauty insinuating patient cadence casting willowy silhouettes capturing elaborate artisan facets in poised minimalism. Adept at modular process and acoustic maneuvers, Florist consorts with alien organics, unflinching glitches in contemplative savoring as isolation and communion mingle in tentative gentleness.
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Joan Shelley - The Spur
Album title: The Spur
Record Label: No Quarter
Helmed by Shelley’s sweet, steady voice and firm, maternal verse, “Spur,” cradles intimate fables, poetic lessons addressing human connections in blameless language. Hushed kindhearted comforts rocked in friendly eloquence, “Spur,” nurtures and cultivates through clanging steel strings finger-picked with watch-maker’s patience. Tasteful, courageous country-folk hopes wrapped with melodic options and graced with spacious arrangements, tackling thorny thoughts with resolute truths.
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Kamikaze Nurse - Stimuloso
Album title: Stimuloso
Record Label: Mint Records
Fertile whirlwinds simmering in hypnotic oddities, “Stimuloso,” sows swinging indie-bop hypotheticals tainted in zany bangers and blazed jangle; frothy, punk-pop chaos flossed, crossed and tossed into fun-fueled hallucinogenics dosed in cozy mind-blowing comas. Devious creatures flexing aggressive eclectics etched in progressive textures, Kamikaze Nurse divebombs shoegaze melancholy with spirited bluster, reeling in bendable schizophrenia, holding opposable notions in dynamic panoramas.
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Kristeen Young - The Beauty Shop
Album title: The Beauty Shop
Record Label: self-release
Furious grandeur manufactured in glamourous prog-pop calamity, seething blitzkrieg grievances and operatic alt-rock passions, Young’s eerie fearlessness plunges from sweat-soaked robo-aerobics to petulant hysterics erupting in run-away cravings, gauntlet-launching symphonics and dervish-curated curveballs. Crunchy cyber-funk chasing cabaret appetizers, “Beauty,” fuses militant malevolence with thunderbolt emotions for gadget-packed pageants cashing in multi-tasking athletics and aria-strewn galas splashed in stomping Broadway fever-dreams.
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Shearwater - The Great Awakening
Album title: The Great Awakening
Record Label: Polyborus
Deep, rich mediations steeped in dreamy beliefs and cosmic solace, the forsaken, “Awakening,” glows in soft monastic majesty, glimmering visions shadowing hallowed synthesizers, trudging percussion tumbling down sullen tunnels, soft-spoken commotion floating in gorgeous orchestras. Mesmerizing co-pilots in rainy night-drives, Shearwater’s compassionate flashes light vast galaxies, tidal messiahs washed onto primordial shores seeking new homes while roaming through battered catacombs.
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Lindsay Clark - Carpe Noctem
Album title: Carpe Noctem
Record Label: Audiosport Records
Airy, acoustic fairy-tale star-sailor, Clark sparkles with windchime-lined guitars cavorting around chamber-folk vocals and wood-nymph string quartets; luminous musings sailing through sun-dappled calico jazz and lace-embroidered gingham pop. A bright, idyllic musical loom “Noctem,” shuttles fondly between breaking dawns and smiling twilight, a wakeful daydream escape woven with descriptive whimsy, strung from wonder-filled welcomes and paired with spare, piano-led prayers.
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David Newbould - Power Up!
Album title: Power Up!
Record Label: Blackbird Records
Sun-baked rattlesnake boogie surrounding fence-riding power-ballads, “Power,” growls with desperado howls, kicking gritty blues-roots grooves with rock-solid resilience; leathery premises etched in noble lonesomeness and stormy disappointments raging in cantankerous faith. Revved in restless repentance rattling uphill battles, Newbould sells good times with few regrets alongside wounded love garnished in edgy respect, a bittersweet street-preacher’s credo facing and vanquishing anguish.
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Stars - From Capelton Hill
Album title: From Capelton Hill
Record Label: Last Gang Records
Romantic anthems canvas posh pop in diminished chords, rolling bass and springy rhythms as “Hill,” swims laps around whimsical reminisces with swooning showtunes tackling silver-screen pageantry through soft, glitter-ball whispers, lavish synthesized pastels and gossipy philosophy. Exquisite misbegotten metropolitans, the modest and melodic Stars persuade, promenade, and serenade, misbehaved apologists bravely paving remedy’s redemption with harmonized hindsight and kissable wisdom.
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lullahush - A City Made of Water and Small Love
Album title: A City Made of Water and Small Love
Record Label: BDI Music
Restless architect and ephemeral experimentalist lullahush assembles tentative memories from circuit-bent confessions and integrated impressions; humane, cyber-soaked mementos trapped in shiny bubble-wrap flutter in colorful piety underlying shy transistorized lullabies, lyrical queries mirroring curious theories. Studio-curated concoctions postulating poetry in motion through effusive minutiae, “City,” builds biomechanical ambiance existing among inquisitive mysteries, nimble riddles piecing the feasible from the inconceivable.
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Monophonics - Sage Motel
Album title: Sage Motel
Record Label: Colemine Records
City-street soul floated on solar winds, “Motel,” swells with psychedelic spells grounded in vigilant precision, silk-lined teardrops from fallen-angel falsettos into gritty head-trips slamming, jamming and getting down. Humble pulpit revivalists, the cosmic Monophonics stand tall with heads bowed, rainbow warriors armed with Latin percussion, fuzz-laden leads and voodoo grooves sweetening punchy brass-plated pleads rocket-launching rallying melodramatics into locomotive rapture.
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Brothers Griiin - Joy City
Album title: Joy City
Record Label: Graveface Records
Helmed by Flaming Lips’ Nicholas Ley and Matthew Duckworth Kirksey, awesome robotic ravers Brothers Griin’s lit debut spins double-dipped bangers between languid daydreams and ambitious mantras. Bungee-jumping funk stoked in baroque mojo, wrung from doctored beats and infected with sick riffs, “Joy,” bursts with sonic novelty, zonked geometry and fluid ingenuity happily cruising through madcap booty-rock with hip microchipped conniptions.
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Mary Lattimore & Paul Sukeena - West Kensington
Album title: West Kensington
Record Label: Three Lobed Recordings
Dappled in airbrushed plucks and prickly permutations ushering nebulous weddings where ghostly corrosions bleed into passive atmospheres with abstract majesty, “Kensington,” tends heavenly glens and sparkling gardens, tranquil banquets merging delicate brevity to blended serenity. Dispossessed processionals hatching placid tones sown from processed electronics, Lattimore’s harp and Sukeena’s guitar cleanse in choral auroras, visceral visions writhing mightily and wilting willfully.
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Pink Mountaintops - Peacock Pools
Album title: Peacock Pools
Record Label: ATO Records
Distorted sorcerers, courting, cavorting and teleporting, Pink Mountaintops’ monster stomp-box gypsy-rock climbs sublime heights casting nomadic paranoia down dark wells buzzing in six-string floods and dunked in glorious glam-punk thunder. Hurtling cataclysmic theatrics into scorned hornet downpours and swamp-boogie chainsaws, “Peacock,” scours around demonic romps propped up by flashy cabaret pushing savage myths stirred by gravelly wit and raggedly mosh-pits.
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Heal and regenerate with sweet pop beacon LAURA VEIRS’ shimmering, “Found Light,” First Nations MEDICINE SINGERS’ rocking cross-pollinating, “Medicine Singers,” and elastic rabbit-hole programmer ARP’s pixelated, “New Pleasures,” then be all you can be alongside smooth operator PATRICK HOLLAND’s immaculate compassions, “You’re The Boss,” torch-singing circuit-purger ATTIA TAYLOR’s digital fantasies, “Space Ghost,” or Southern Gothic chronicler TAMI NEILSON’s sassy, “Kingmaker.” Gather your strength to battle trap captain WU-LU’s confrontational grab-bag, “Loggerhead,” clear-eyed roots-rockers DAWES’ everyday fables, “Misadventures of Doomscroller,” and lunging polymorphic punks OOG BOGO’s incendiary. “Plastic.” Excel and succeed!