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Overloaded by all the “new music” options you keep hearing about? We’re here to help.  Here’s several songs we think you should fucking know (this week).  Check out the Spotify playlist below and feel free to leave your suggestions in the comments too!



You’d be hard pressed to find any music geek not losing their shit over the new Animal Collective record, Centipede Hz, which came out yesterday on Domino Records.  This album marks the return of Deakin (and we went hiking with him/picked his weird, weird brain…) who had previously sat out on Merriweather Post Pavilion‘s production.  To me “Moonjock” is the standout song on the album, with it’s in-your-face opening percussion capturing your attention from the staccato first beat (a deliberate choice, I’m sure, since it is the first song on the album).  There’s a familiarity there, reminiscent of previous Animal Collective sounds but it’s a venture forward enough that I don’t feel bored by it’s presentation.  The song has some serious Beatles vibes, from a little Sgt. Pepper to even the vintage sunshiney-goodness of Revolver.  Good job, Animal Collective.  I’m so stoked to see you perform this live on October 2nd at Merriweather (tix still on sale here).

THE XX:  “Fiction”

It’s no secret I have a level of lust for The XX that rivals most girl’s opinions of Ryan Gosling. The band can really do no wrong in my eyes and while their new album Coexist is nothing too new, it’s a solid sophomore effort (out September 10th).  The XX have this uncanny ability to harness negative space in their music that no one does better.  So it’s with “Fiction” where bassist Oliver Sim gets the spotlight… but it’s not so much a spotlight as it is a flashlight being shined through thick fog on London Bridge in the middle of night.  His voice is soothing, cooing words of love and insecurity that send the little hairs on the back of my neck on end.  “Fiction” is The XX at their finest, whispering intimacy and letting the music compliment not compete with that precious feeling of uncertainty.  It’s the perfect song to soundtrack a first or last kiss, one that’ll mean something for days/years to come so don’t waste it on anything less.

MATTHEW DEAR: “Earthforms”

Picking just one track off the new Matthew Dear record Beams (out on Ghostly International now) is more than difficult, it’s downright near impossible.  Dear, who’s known for his broody dark dance compositions really dug his heels in deep with this effort.  Beams is the Drive soundtrack times a hundred.  The second track off the record, “Earthforms” is sexy, fierce, and purrs like a vintage muscle car as it bounds down the road with a dead body in the trunk.  It’s Lost Highway meets the 21st Century, and I’ve gotta say I’m floored.  Altogether Beams might just be Dear’s most accomplished record yet (a hard-pressed statement since most of 2010’s Black City still ranks in my top 100 in my iTunes plays).

BRETON: “Pacemaker”

Like I said the other day here, Breton takes that Crystal Castles/Berlin-based ambient trance vibe and mixes it with a bit of the pop aesthetic that James Blake has brought to the dubstep genre. In other words: I fucking love it. “Pacemaker” is the perfect blend of samples and newness with overlayed monotone vocals and a purpose. Feeling a bit vintage, but ultimately fresh “Pacemaker” gives a jolt to your heart with each pulsating electronic drum tick. If live was a movie and I was under cardiac arrest, I’d surely want this jam soundtracking my resuscitation.

TURBO FRUITS: “Ain’t The Only One Having Fun”

You know what life needs more of? Quality bands inspired by Led Zeppelin (keyword: quality). Turbo Fruits may have a terrible band name, but their third effort Butter that redeems them from the laughter. The last track of the record, “Ain’t The Only One Having Fun” sets the mind up against dawn’s hazy sun and a curtain of cigarette smoke from an late night bender. It’s got touches of The Black Keys and The Dead Weather, but likens back to the days of Buddy Holly with it’s vintage guitar riffs and vocal play. Put this jam on and wish for summer never to end. I know I will.