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Fall albums worth the wait

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Despite what others might say, 2011 has been a pretty good year for music. We’ve heard some great records from Radiohead, Bon Iver, Fleet Foxes, Jay Z and Kanye West, amongst many others. 2011 seems to be keeping that trend all they way to the finish line with a pretty solid line up of fall/holiday releases. Listed below are ones I would suggest giving a spin.

 

Rock:

Trash Talk, Awake EP–Oct.11

Though Trash Talk is kind of terrifying, as is the title track of their new seven inch EP, the hardcore band’s music is nothing short of exhilarating. I’m excited for this seven inch from one of the few punk bands worth listening to today.

Real Estate, Days–Oct. 18.

Summer isn’t over yet. Real Estate has a brand new LP on deck, and I couldn’t be more excited. The first single, “It’s Real”, is overflowing with heavenly harmonies, reverb soaked riffs and nostalgia for the days when surf rock ruled the airwaves. “It’s Real” is also a sonic upgrade for the band- they’re more confident, clean and professional.

M83, Hurry Up We’re Dreaming–Oct. 18

Lead single “Midnight City” includes all of the following: Distorted vocal samples. Synth drops. Sax solos. Programmed drums. A minute-long sax solo. Shoegaze indebted vocals. The lyric The city is my church… What more could you want???? Also worth noting is that “Midnight City” is our first taste at a fully realized double LP (remember those, parents?) reportedly inspired by the Smashing Pumpkins’ Melancholy and the Infinite Sadness.

Beach Boys, Smile Sessions–Nov. 1

The great lost rock and roll album Smile will finally be officially released later this year. Originally to be released after the seminal Pet Sounds, Smile was cancelled due to creative differences within the band (and Brian Wilson going off the deep end). Come for the classic surf rock sound, stay for the 24(!) versions of “Good Vibrations” included in the box-set.

Metallica and Lou Reed, Lulu–November 1.

Lou Reed, the godfather of alternative rock, is paired with Metallica, the godfathers of commercial thrash. Interesting. I’m morbidly fascinated to see how this will turn out, and who knows­­-­­ it might actually be good. Lou Reed’s a great visionary, and Metallica are great musicians, so who’s to say something good won’t come out of this immensely odd pairing.

Atlas Sound, Paralax–Nov. 8

Deerhunter’s Bradford Cox will release his third solo album under the guise of Atlas Sound in early November. The first three singles are mournful, sparse and beautiful arrangements that bring Cox’s distinct voice and claustrophobic lyrics to the forefront of the action. I’m a fan of essentially everything this guy has ever done, and I’m sure he won’t disappoint.

Kurt Vile, So Outta Reach–Nov. 8

Kurt Vile’s Smoke Ring For My Halo is being repackaged with a brand new EP of songs called So Outta Reach. Smoke Ring, a delicious serving of hazy, couldn’t care less rock and roll, is already one of my favorites from 2011, and I cannot wait to hear what comes next from this Philadelphia shredder. The first single, “The Creature”, is classic Vile- a bright, finger-picked guitar riff, a vibrating rock organ and a lyric dripping with sarcasm.

The Rolling Stones, Some Girls Reissue–Thanksgiving

If you don’t think the Some Girls is the best post Exile Stones album, you’re wrong. Later this year, the classic is getting the fancy reissue treatment with deluxe packaging, liner notes, pictures and most exciting of all, a new batch of studio outtakes. If they’re half as good as the disco punk funk of the original, they’ll be worth a listen.

 

Electronic:

James Blake, Enough Thunder–Oct. 11

Though he technically is a member of the same genre of Skrillex, James Blake has a grasp of one concept that makes his dubstep infinitely better than Skrillex’s: an understanding of the meaning of the word “subtle”. Blake has made a name for himself with his unique sound; deep bass and stuttering drum beats paired with mournful, soulful hiccups of piano. His self-titled debut was one of the most surprising records of the year, and, hopefully, his follow up EP, Enough Thunder, will hold the same power. Already released is the track “Fall Creek Boys Choir”, an autotune-drenched collaboration with folk-y turned 80’s R&B crooner Bon Iver.

Justice, Audio Video Disco–Oct. 25

Justice’s music is more suited an arena than the dance floor. The French duo created one of my favorite dance records with their over the top, disco heavy, Metallica-meets-Daft Punk explosion, Cross, and after several long years, I’m ready for more of the same. From what I have heard from early singles like “Civilization”, that’s what we’re poised to get.

 

Hip-Hop/ Rap:

Drake, Take Care–Oct. 24

Anyone who’s spoken to me in the past couple of days has heard me make fun of the Toronto MC’s simultaneously ridiculous and awesome album cover for Take Care. Nonetheless, I’m excited for his follow up. Drake’s alignment with Lil Wayne seems to be becoming less and less defined, and I hope that Drake continues to distance himself from the corny “Young Money” image on Take Care. I’m looking forward to the inevitable Weeknd collaboration.

The Weeknd, Title TBA( Echoes of Silence?)–Release date TBA

Apparently Drake’s new BFF has a third mix-tape scheduled for release before the end of the year. Details pretty much stop there, but I can only assume that we’re in for more autotune heavy neuvo R&B. I liked House of Balloons and Thursday, but wasn’t completely head over heels for them either. I’m more than willing to give The Weeknd a third try, though.

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Fall albums worth the wait