Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Dog Days Are Over: A Fall Music Preview

The proverbial dog days of summer are fading away, as we prepare to head back into the routine that fall brings. We’ve enjoyed our days at the beach, nights out, and the feeling of the breeze rustling our hair as we cruise around with nothing to do. So, as we say farewell to another summer come and gone, let’s look ahead to some of the great music that will get us through the next season.
-- Jared Iversen

Ra Ra Riot – The Orchard – August 24th

The Syracuse-based band (don’t hold it against them) will offer up more of their orchestral pop on the follow up to their critically acclaimed debut album. This isn’t really a fall release, but I missed it on the Summer Music Preview, and it’s supposed to be “so poppy you will want to throw up on yourself” (in a good way, I’m assuming). And seeing as it was produced and mixed by members of Death Cab for Cutie and Vampire Weekend, that is entirely possible. Listen to the single (and other tracks from the album) and decide for yourself.

The Walkmen – Lisbon – September 14th

Indie rock veterans The Walkmen will release their sixth studio album next month. The record’s title and Romantic spirit were inspired by the band’s trips to the Portuguese capital city, which spurred the writing of nearly 30 songs (11 of which found their place on this album). The lead single, Stranded, features regal horns and Hamilton Leithauser’s distinguished whine, and creates a perfect cocoon of sound, with just the right dose of melancholy and nostalgia, to get you through those early days of fall.

Of Montreal – False Priest – September 14th

The always strange and interesting Athens, Georgia band will release their tenth studio album next month. The upcoming LP features hip-hop sensation Janelle Monae, who they are currently touring with to promote the album. The two singles indicate the record will have more of the band’s signature funky and danceable pop. And the album cover is pretty sweet.

Deerhunter – Halcyon Digest – September 28th

The fourth album from Bradford Cox’s band is a concept album of sorts about “the way that we write and rewrite and edit our memories to be a digest version of what we want to remember, and how that's kind of sad.” The album was produced and mixed by Ben Allen, who also worked on Animal Collective’s Merriweather Post Pavilion, and, despite the more guitar based sound of the album’s pleasant single, this suggests there should be more brilliant ambient, psych-pop on the way. This album cover is just creepy though.

Girls – TBA - TBA

Last year, San Francisco beach rockers Girls released their debut album, quickly becoming to the indie world what Justin Bieber is to 12 year old girls. In a recent interview, front man Christopher Owens revealed that a new Girls album would be released “sometime in the fall.” There’s not too many deets at the moment, but for now check out this new song in which Owens shows a much softer side.

Kid Cudi – Man On The Moon II: The Legend of Mr. Rager - October 26th

KiD CuDi is dropping the sequel to his debut album, Man on the Moon: The End of Day, in October, saying it will bring “you into [his] reality, good and bad.” The rapper’s brand of electronic hip-hop will likely provide one or two songs that will become staples at Village A parties this fall. Until then, listen to the official single (featuring Kanyeezee) and a couple other tracks, and cop his latest mixtape.

Nelly – Nelly 5.0 – November 16th

We finally have an answer to the question everyone has been asking (mainly just Caroline) – what happened to Nelly? The St. Louis rapper hasn’t had a hit song since 2005, when Facebook still required an invitation to join and Twitter wasn’t even invented (you know, the good old days), and seemingly dropped off the grid for the second half of the decade. The man who kicked off the new millennium with classics like “Country Grammar,” “Ride Wit Me,” and “Hot in Herre” appears to be making a comeback, with the release of his sixth studio album. Listen to the single and get ready to shake ya tailfeather.

Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. - TBA- TBA

This ectro-folk-psych-pop duo is the best thing to be associated with NASCAR since, umm, ever (except for maybe this, and probably this, ok and definitely this). According to their MySpace, the debut album will be out in the fall, but in the meantime check out their painfully catchy Horse Power EP, which features a cover of The Beach Boys' "God Only Knows" (Do I smell/hear a feature on Take Cover?).

Kanye West – Dark Twisted Fantasy – November

Speaking of comebacks, ladies and gentlemen, Kanye West is back. It seems the enigmatic rapper has abandoned the abhorrent auto tune that was featured prominently on his last album, the emo dud 808’s and Heartbreak, and has returned to form. He recently joined the web’s most popular narcissistic outlet, and has shown no signs of checking his ego when discussing the new album either, comparing it to the “masterwork” of “Michelangelo, Picasso, [and] the pyramids.” He says his goal is to reach “that Avatar level,” but let’s hope he doesn’t substitute substance for some glitzy gimmick. Then again, glitzy gimmicks are what ‘Ye does best. As if that’s not enough, it has been confirmed that he flew Justin Vernon (of Bon Iver) out to his studio in Hawaii to lay down vocals for “at least 10 songs!” While I can confidently say this album won’t actually compare to this or this or this, Kanye appears to be as motivated and cocky as ever, and that is a very good thing. Check out the single and a leaked track.

Other releases to be on the lookout for:

Fleet Foxes are supposed to release their sophomore album around “stocking-stuffer” time

(You’re my boy) Blu is slated to drop his album NoYork! this yea.

And of course there’s always the possibility of a new Radiohead album...

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