Here’s another collection of music culled from recent releases to help keep the summer vibe going. Check out new songs from indie veterans Spoon, Interpol, the New Pornographers and the Shins along with new bands such as Jungle and the Orwells. Vacationer, Parquet Courts and Ex Hex bring the party atmosphere while Christopher Owens, Stand of Oaks and Tweedy (Jeff Tweedy of Wilco) craft a mellow musical vein.
**EXTRA CREDIT IF YOU CAN NAME EVERY BAND WITH FAMILY MEMBERS IN THE LINEUP (ANSWER AT THE END OF THIS POST)
1. “Can’t Do Without You” – Caribou
Canadian composer/producer Dan Snaith is ready with a sixth studio album since 2005 as Caribou, Our Love. His ready mix of dance beats, weighty bass lines and electronic wizardry is uncontested in this lead single and opening track for the album.
2. “Do You” – Spoon
Spoon returns with its eighth studio album, They Want My Soul, since the indie rock band was formed in Austin in 1993. The five-piece includes a new member Alex Fischel (keys, guitar) but the gritty vocals of lead singer Brit Daniels still gives the music its edge, as witnessed in “Do You”.
3. “Gold Silver Diamond” – Generationals
Ted Joyner and Grant Widmer make up the New Orleans-based indie rock duo Generationals, layering rhythms with stylized pop vocals for a distinctive sound. “Gold Silver Diamond” is the first single off the fourth studio album since 2009, Alix.
4. “Paradise Waiting” – Vacationer
Vacationer recently released a sophomore album, Relief, inspired by playing gigs for fans and being together on the road. The band is a collaboration of singer Kenny Vasoli, who imbibes every note with sunny warmth, plus Body Language’s Matthew Young and Grand Wheeler.
5. “Sunbathing Animal” – Parquet Courts
The fast-paced punk energy continues with NYC-based band Parquet Courts, back with a third album called Sunbathing Animal. This searing rock tune is the title track of the new collection.
6. “From Now On” – Delta Spirit
San Diego’s five piece indie rock group Delta Spirit delivers a true band aesthetic by writing together and recording everything live for its fourth album, Into the Wide. “From Now On” is the teaser single for the upcoming album.
7. “Who Needs You” – The Orwells
The Orwells are a young five-piece rock band from the Chicago suburbs, writing about “anywhere USA” with wild exuberance. “Who Needs You” is a single off the sophomore album called Disgraceland.
8. “The Heat” – Jungle
Josh Lloyd-Watson and Tom McFarland comprise the London-based duo Jungle, a modern soul musical collective with a self-titled debut album. They expand to a seven-piece live band to bring the groove of songs like “The Heat” to the stage.
9. “Hot and Cold” – Ex Hex
Power trio Ex Hex hails from Washington, D.C. This female group presents the basics, an “unapologetic Rock and Roll”, as found in the single “Hot and Cold” from the upcoming debut album Rips.
10. “Brill Bruisers” – The New Pornographers
“Brill Bruisers” is the title track of eight-piece Canadian indie rock band the New Pornographer’s sixth album since 1999. The signature, full-on vocals of the group create an instant celebration of the human spirit with soaring melodies and layered harmonies.
11. “So What” – Avi Buffalo
Avigdor Zahner-Isenberg took four years to create his second album as Avi Buffalo, At Best Cuckold. The dreamy ‘60s pop influence saturates the songs again, as evidenced in “So What.”
12. “So Now What” – The Shins
The Shins’ feature role in a Zach Braff film (Wish I Was Here) is reprised in “So Now What,” gently reminding listeners why the Albuquerque band’s indie cred remains intact. The song exists easily on its own merits, and yes, might just change your life.
13. “All the Rage Back Home” – Interpol
“All the Rage Back Home” is the solid opening track for NYC-based Interpol’s fifth studio album since 1997, El Pintor. Singer Paul Banks takes over bass from the departing member Carlos Danger, and the group tightly rocks on.
14. “Where I’m From” – Eels
Prolific singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Californian Mark Oliver Everett (a.k.a. E) has released his eleventh full length album for Eels since 1996, The Cautionary Tales of Mark Oliver Everett. The introspective song “Where I’m From” draws the listener in while softly singing private thoughts.
15. “Summer Noon” – Tweedy
Jeff Tweedy of Chicago band Wilco began a solo musical project with son Spencer on drums adding creative input to form Tweedy. This song “Summer Moon” finds that familiar world-weary voice over strumming guitar, from the new ablum called Sukierae.
16. “It Comes Back To You” – Christopher Owens
L.A. based musician Christopher Owens (former frontman of indie rock band Girls) has released his second solo album, A New Testament. “It Comes Back to You” highlights Owens’ warm voice and other-worldly artistic vision.
17. “Woke Up To the Light” – Strand of Oaks
Strand of Oaks is the folk rock outfit by Timothy Showalter based in Philadelphia. The songs for a fourth album, Heal, came together after a horrific car crash where Showalter was forced to reexamine everything— now contained in every note.
18. “Pets” – Deadmau5
Deadmau5 is the stage name of Canadian progressive-house music producer Joel Thomas Zimmerman, who just released his seventh album since 2005. The airy instrumental “Pets” is one of 25 tracks (minus the mixes) on this two-disc album, which contains a continuous mix for each disc.
DID YOU GUESS THREE BANDS?
1. TWEEDY—FATHER & SON
2. PARQUET COURTS—BROTHERS
3. THE ORWELLS—COUSINS & TWIN BROTHERS