This week in new releases, a pop heavyweight aims to defend her throne, some legendary shredders deliver album No. 21, and a Speedy Ortiz protege makes her big debut on Exploding in Sound Records. With so many options, you’ll feel like you’re at that place Golden Corral, which they seem to advertise heavily up here despite the fact that there aren’t any around.
One of the modern day queens of pop shakes a bit of her playfulness on “Prism,” but trades it for a for the heart of a “champion,” with prideful hooks a la Lady Gaga. Let’s get serious, even if the only song on this album was “Roar,” it would probably be one of the best releases this week. That track smangs.
Palehound – “Bent Nail EP”
Yonkers-based Ellen Kempner isn’t even 20 yet, but seems to encompass a heaping handful of ’90s glory in her first recordings under the moniker Palehound. The “Bent Nail EP” may seem nostalgic at first listen, but with the help of fellow young’ns like Speedy Ortiz’s Sadie Dupuis and Ava Luna’s Carlos Hernandez and Julian Fader, Kempner find a forward-moving groove that should hit buzzheads hard.
Dead Gaze – “Brain Holiday”
Mississippi’s R. Cole Furlow has been recording distorted dream pop gems from his bedroom under the name Dead Gaze for a few years now. With the release of “Brain Holiday,” Furlow continues to channel his lo-fi loving personality and reaches gracefully into psychedelic realms, but gathers enough vocal cleanliness to keep it palatable and catchy.
The 2011 album “Give You The Ghost” was an explosive debut for Minneapolis’ Polica, to say the least. It also came amidst a hot streak for likeminded female-fronted echopop acts, with Channy Leaneagh’s vocals becoming the main variable of the band’s experimental tones. Leaneagh goes for a bit more rawness on “Shulamith,” which will provide a new and interesting perspective to the band.
Ducktails – “Wish Hotel EP”
Real Estate guitarist Matt Mondanile has maintained his solo outfit Ducktails since 2009, and found a good deal of success with “Flower Lane” earlier this year. While the material from that record soaked up a Real Estate meets disco-era gold vibe, the songs that have surfaced from “Wish Hotel EP” open up in a very psychedelic way, almost akin to Tame Impala’s most recent work.
Motorhead – “Aftershock”
The hard rock vets keep the motor humming on their 21st album. Lemmy Kilmister and company have released a new album every two years since 1991, and just like all of those records, “Aftershock” doesn’t aim to reinvent rock, just melt every listener’s face. Mission accomplished on this record.
Ryan Hemsworth – “Guilt Trips”
The Canadian producer has remixed the likes of Kanye West, Cat Power, and Backstreet Boys, and has possibly been heard at your local frathouse. On “Guilt Trip,” he takes a more melodic and ambient approach, letting his originality take center stage and proving his modern artistry.