June 2017 Alt Col Picks

A lot of great albums were released in June, so here are our favorite records of the month! (In no particular order.) Want a Spotify playlist? Click here!

  • Lorde – Melodrama

Four years after her groundbreaking debut album, Lorde returns more lyrically mature and musically expansive than ever. Youthful yet mellow, Melodrama doesn’t hold back its emotions. Between songs of break-ups, struggles in the industry, and friendly endeavors, Lorde has certainly grown, and this record was well worth the wait. Standout tracks include “Green Light,” “Liability,” and “Perfect Places.” Melodrama will appeal to fans of Broods, Alessia Cara, and CHVRCHES.

  • Broadside – Paradise

Upbeat cadences and gritty guitar riffs outline Broadside’s sophomore effort titled Paradise, and it’s paradise indeed. This album is chocked full of pop punk songs ready for a sunny summertime drive with the windows down, but it has its softer, more cultivated moments as well. Standout tracks include “Hidden Colors,” “Paradise,” and “Laps Around a Picture Frame.” Paradise is sure to attract followers of Seaway, State Champs, and Waterparks.

  • All Time Low – Last Young Renegade

Pop rock veterans All Time Low transition to a more electropop rock vibe for their seventh studio album Last Young Renegade. The band clutches on to their organic instrumentation for a number of tunes, but many are dazzled by synth-driven melodies and artificial beats. Standout tracks include “Last Young Renegade,” “Nice2KnoU,” and “Dark Side of Your Room.” Last Young Renegade will capture listeners of We Are the In Crowd, Against the Current, and Set It Off.

  • Bleachers – Gone Now

The ’80s-inspired pop rock of Gone Now is thunderous, charming, and undoubtedly entertaining. Jack Antonoff, former member of the hit band Fun., takes on his second full-length project with impassioned gusto and a love for the past. After working with artists like Lorde, Carly Rae Jepsen, and Taylor Swift, Antonoff delivers his own pop sensibility. Standout tracks include “Don’t Take the Money,” “Hate That You Know Me,” and “I Miss Those Days.” Gone Now is sure to interest fans of Passion Pit, Smallpools, and Fun.

  • Rise Against – Wolves

With revived political apprehension, Rise Against lives up to their name through diligent angst and exasperation on their eighth long-player. Fiery guitar melodies and resentful libretto characterize Wolves, solidifying it as another coterminous release in the band’s catalog. Standout tracks include “The Violence,” “Welcome to the Breakdown,” “House on Fire,” and “Mourning in Amerika.” Wolves will appeal to listeners of AFI, The Menzingers, and Sum 41.

  • Royal Blood – How Did We Get So Dark?

Granular distortion and crisp percussion grant this two-piece some fervor and ferocity, which is impressively pulled off with only a bass guitar and drum set. Royal Blood cemented themselves as a dark, sabulous duo on their 2014 debut album, but How Did We Get So Dark? elevates that charisma to new heights. Standout tracks include “Lights Out,” “I Only Lie When I Love You,” and “Hook, Line, & Sinker.” How Did We Get So Dark? is sure to satisfy followers of Highly Suspect, Wolf Alice, and Nothing But Thieves.

  • Phoenix – Ti Amo

The spellbinding dreaminess of Ti Amo attests to Phoenix’s dynamic musicianship and stylistic charm. Four years after 2013’s cool and glamorous Bankrupt!, Phoenix expands upon that glimmering and irresistible timbre on their sixth studio album. The synth-pop and relaxed appeal causes this release to be undeniably alluring. Standout tracks include “J-Boy,” “Ti Amo,” “Goodbye Soleil,” and “Fleur de Lys.” Ti Amo is bound to attract listeners of Atlas Genius, Passion Pit, and Foster the People.

  • LANY – LANY

Indie electropop band LANY unleashes their debut long-player detailed by glittery synth inflections and catchy, savory choruses. Through liquidy vocals and youthful lyrics, this self-titled project is colorful, vibrant, and lively, each song bringing a new spectacular attitude to the table. Standout tracks include “ILYSB,” “Super Far,” “Pancakes,” and “The Breakup.” LANY will capture fans of The 1975, Heart of Gold, and The Japanese House.

  • Jessica Hernandez & The Deltas – Telephone

Impish and beguiling, this bilingual frontwoman delivers a scorching sophomore full-length that is bound to bring you coming back for more. Telephone is spirited and jaunty between its buoyant, energetic anthems and rollicking choruses, but the more leisurely moments provide this album its devilish bite. Standout tracks include “Oh No,” “Bad At Loving You,” “Hot Damn,” and “Break Your Heart.” Telephone will appeal to followers of Catey Shaw, Elle King, and Lake Street Dive.

  • Cigarettes After Sex – Cigarettes After Sex

The mellow, daydreamy intonation of Cigarettes After Sex’s self-titled debut is entrancing and emotional. The heartfelt lyrics of this LP are captivating and compelling, which is complemented by the mesmerizing smoothness of the instrumentation. Standout tracks include “Apocalypse,” “Each Time You Fall in Love,” “Young & Dumb,” and “K.” Cigarettes After Sex will satisfy listeners of Bombay Bicycle Club, Lana Del Rey, and London Grammar.


Honorable Mentions
  • Fleet Foxes – Crack-Up

Mellow folk alternative bliss. Standout tracks include “Third of May/Ōdaigahara,” “Fool’s Errand,” and “Cassius.” For fans of The Oh Hellos, Julie Byrne, and Sea Wolf.

  • The White Noise – AM/PM

Piercing rock with impassioned vocals and a lot to offer. Standout tracks include “Bite Marks,” “Picture Day,” and “I Lost My Mind (In California).” For fans of A Day to Remember, Issues, and I Prevail.

  • Noah Guthrie – The Valley

Calming singer/songwriter folk beatitude. Standout tracks include “Pardon Me,” “I Would Die 4 U,” and “Leaving California.” For fans of Chris Dupont, Little Chief, and Trent Dabbs.

  • Hey Violet – From the Outside

Groovy, captivating pop rock. Standout tracks include “Brand New Moves,” “Break My Heart,” and “O.D.D.” For fans of DNCE, Before You Exit, and Masketta Fall.

  • Imagine Dragons – Evolve

Energetic pop rock with an electronic tinge. Standout tracks include “Walking the Wire,” “I Don’t Know Why,” and “Believer.” For fans of AWOLNATION, X Ambassadors, and Coldplay.

  • Volumes – Different Animals

Solid rock with a hip-hop verve. Standout tracks include “Finite,” “Feels Good,” and “On Her Mind (ft. Pouya).” For fans of Issues, Slaves, and Palisades.

  • Rancid – Trouble Maker

Gravelly punk rock with a convivial attitude. Standout tracks include “Where I’m Going,” “Ghost of a Chance,” and “Farewell Lola Blue.” For fans of NOFX, Teenage Bottlerocket, and The Bouncing Souls.

  • alt-J – Relaxer

Expressive, experimental indie alternative. Standout tracks include “In Cold Blood,” “Adeline,” and “3WW.” For fans of Bon Iver, Future Islands, and Arcade Fire.

  • London Grammar – Truth Is a Beautiful Thing

Minimalistic indie alt-pop. Standout tracks include “Oh Woman, Oh Man,” “Truth Is a Beautiful Thing,” and “Big Picture.” For fans of Banks, Elbow, and Foals.

  • Color Film – Living Arrangements

Fun, sprightly alt-rock. Standout tracks include “Even If It Did Exist,” “52 Minds,” and “Small Town.” For fans of Don Broco, Divine Fits, and The Social Animals.

  • Currents – The Place I Feel Safest

Exhilarating metal with a bite. Standout tracks include “Apnea,” “Night Terrors,” and “Silence.” For fans of Novelists, The Healing, and Delusions of Grandeur.

  • Portugal. The Man – Woodstock

Jovial indie alternative vibes. Standout tracks include “Feel It Still,” “Rich Friends,” and “So Young.” For fans of Atlas Genius, Cage the Elephant, and The Districts.


Let us know what you think of June’s releases down in the comments below!

November 2016 Alt Col Picks

novpicks

Many great releases appeared in November this year, so here are our favorite albums of the month! (In no particular order.)

  • Waterparks – Double Dare

Waterparks, hailing from Houston, Texas, is known for efficiently blending electronic elements and high-energy pop rock, and the amalgam continues on their full-length debut album, Double Dare. The pop punk luster is not covered up by the computerized components, but is instead perfectly complemented. Standout tracks include “Stupid for You,” “Hawaii (Stay Awake),” and “Royal.” Double Dare will attract fans of State Champs, As It Is, and With Confidence.

  • Highly Suspect – The Boy Who Died Wolf

The hard rock and bluesy accents of Highly Suspect’s abilities are capitalized upon in this mesmerizing, head-bobbing release. The Boy Who Died Wolf showcases a rollicking yet leisurely approach to crisp, amplified guitar work and smooth percussion. Standout tracks include “My Name Is Human,” “Little One,” and “Serotonia.” The Boy Who Died Wolf is sure to appeal to listeners of Deftones, The Pretty Reckless, and Evans Blue.

  • Masketta Fall – Golden

A sheer pop band, Masketta Fall has begun moving away from the rockier sound of their 2012 release Something Beautiful to a more radio-friendly style leaning heavy on the pop side. And hey, don’t let that turn you away from checking this album out! Guitars are still prevalent and amped up, even if the pop aspects shine through. Standout tracks include “Mercedes,” “Defenceless,” and “Butterflies.” Golden will interest followers of The Vamps, The Summer Set, and Crash the Party.

  • Black Box Warning – Black Box Warning

Album art.jpegThe debut self-titled long-player from metal band Black Box Warning has something for every rock fan: breakdowns, screams, clean vocals, and deep lyrics. The stellar musicianship and execution is simply something to marvel, and the emotional passion bolsters it even more. Standout tracks include “Nothing is Everything,” “Neon Mind,” and “Hypnagogia.” Black Box Warning will attract fans of Breaking Benjamin, Three Days Grace, and Bullet For My Valentine.

  • Homesafe – Evermore

Looking for some decent pop punk to listen to? Well, here’s a great cut to come from November. Homesafe recrudesces with an 8-track album filled with solid rock jams and some of their best work to date. The crisp production and talent of this band refuses to be overlooked and begs for you to listen in. Standout tracks include “Float Away,” “Two (Bare) Hands,” and “Exoneration.” Evermore will certainly appeal to followers of Real Friends, Knuckle Puck, and Sleep On It.

  • Broken Back – Broken Back

Jérôme, under the stage name of Broken Back, debuts an electro indie folk album that surely leaves one scratching their head at how to properly label it… Broken Back fuses together many different styles to create a wonderful collection of upbeat earcandy displaying acoustic guitars, electronic principles, and raspy vocals. Standout tracks include “Lady Bitterness,” “Excuses,” and “Better Run.” Broken Back will interest listeners of The Shoes, ALB, and Mai Lan.

  • Summer Lights – From Start to Finish (EP)

Another great pop punk release, the From Start to Finish EP by Salt Lake City band Summer Lights boasts rock gravity and brilliance from start to finish. Hopefully these guys will hit it big in the scene soon because this EP deserves to be heard, and we can’t wait to hear more! Standout tracks include “With You” and “Pick Up the Pieces.” From Start to Finish is sure to attract fans of Sleep On It, Knuckle Puck, and You vs. Yesterday.

  • Royal Teeth – Amateurs (EP)

Smooth pop rock band Royal Teeth returns with Amateurs, an EP that proves they’re far more than just amateurs. With artwork that resembles this 5 Seconds of Summer photo, there’s no doubt this EP will capture an upbeat pop rock vibe that balances the two adjectives expertly. Standout tracks include “Kids Conspire,” “Only You,” and “Is It Just Me.” Amateurs will appeal to listeners of 5SOS, The Summer Set, and The Colourist.

  • The Griswolds – High Times for Low Lives

The Griswolds gained traction in the scene from touring with power pop band Walk the Moon and singles from their previous album, but hopefully this release will launch them farther into stardom! This LP is a masterpiece of alt-pop grandeur that you don’t wanna miss. Standout tracks include “Out of My Head,” “High Times for Low Lives,” and “Feels So Right.” High Times for Low Lives will interest followers of POP ETC, Passion Pit, and Neon Trees.

  • Heavy English – Pop Wasteland

Pop Wasteland, the debut full-length from New York City trio Heavy English, boasts various styles and approaches all in the vein of glossy alt-rock that packs a punch. From the denser, darker guitar melodies of “Black Dog” to the buoyant beat of “21 Flights,” this album truly has a lot to offer. Standout tracks include “21 Flights,” “Black Dog,” and “Washed Up Tongue.” Pop Wasteland is sure to attract fans of The Dear Hunter, White Arrows, and NGHBRS.

  • Half Hearted – Terrified (EP)

Half Hearted utilizes clean vocals and impassioned screams to develop contrast on their latest EP, Terrified. The hooky guitar melodies are hauntingly unblemished and the overall musical ability of this group is enthralling. Poignant lyricism and a desire to capture the listener certainly pay off amazingly well. Standout tracks include “Terrified,” “Ghosts,” and “Storm Chaser,” but honestly, the entire EP is fantastic! Terrified will interests listeners of Currents, Wage War, and Beartooth.

  • Woes – Woes (EP)

Pop punk done right yet again! Woes debuts with the 5-track self-titled extended play that is bound to get stuck in your head. While some lyrics are cheesy and troubadouric, this youthfully energetic EP still shines and will fit comfortably in the library of any pop punk fan. Standout tracks include “Winter Sun” and, well, the entire EP! Woes will appeal to followers of Knuckle Puck, Neck Deep, and State Champs.


Honorable Mentions
  • Icon for Hire – You Can’t Kill Us

Standout tracks include “Supposed to Be,” “You Can’t Kill Us,” “War,” and “Get Well II.” For fans of Tonight Alive, Digital Daggers, and New Years Day.

  • DNCE – DNCE

Standout tracks include “Body Moves,” “Truthfully,” “Good Day,” and “Be Mean.” For fans of Maroon 5, Olly Murs, and Set It Off. (Upside Down era.)

  • An Untold Sadness – Sonorous

Standout tracks include “The Truth,” “What of Your Riches?,” “This Far, and No Further,” and “Flowers.” For fans of Avenged Sevenfold, Disturbed, and Crown the Empire.

  • Cold Collective – Through w/ That (EP/Single)

coldStandout tracks include the entire release, but especially “Through w/ That.” For fans of Transit, Man Overboard, and Misser.

  • pronoun – There’s no one new around you. (EP)

Standout tracks include the entire release, but especially “a million other things.” For fans of Knox Hamilton, A Silent Film, and Summer Camp.

  • The Japanese House – Swim Against the Tide (EP)

Standout tracks include the entire release, but especially “Good Side In.” For fans of Hayley Kiyoko, Scavenger Hunt, and Summer Camp.

  • Ready to Fire – Satellites (EP)

Standout tracks include the entire release, but especially “Nerve.” For fans of 5 Seconds of Summer, Paramore, and All Time Low.


Let us know what you think of November’s releases down in the comments below!