With all of the insanity going on in the world right now, it’s refreshing to see that artists are maintaining their creativity and releasing incredible music in this time of isolation and paranoia. Here are some albums that came out this April that I’ve been rocking with lately!
JOYRYDE – Brave
Bass house legend JOYRYDE has finally given us his debut LP, Brave, on HARD Recs. After blowing up in 2016, JOYRYDE laid low due to severe health issues, including a collapse of a disk in his lower back. After 4 years, JOYRYDE emerges from his struggles victorious and ready to rage, giving us an album of nothing but straight bangers. If you need some good music to dance to in these insane times, look no further!
Westside Gunn – Pray For Paris
Westside Gunn is a rapper that just seethes gritty New York energy. The artist steps forward and delivers a masterful homage to the hardcore hustle of New York rap legends like Wu-Tang and Mobb Deep. As 1/3 of the rap collective Griselda, Gunn is joined by group members Benny the Butcher and Conway the Machine to give us razor-sharp and blood thirsty verses, all over slow and menacing beats. Artists like Freddie Gibbs, Joey Bada$$ and even Tyler, the Creator make guest appearances.
Rina Sawayama – Sawayama
English singer Rina Sawayama blew us all away in 2017 with her debut EP, RINA, combining futuristic production and astronomic lyrics with a 2000’s pop star energy. On her debut LP, SAWAYAMA, the bops don’t stop coming, and Rina’s willingness to experiment and try out new sounds shines in full force. You’ll headbang, you’ll dance, and more than anything, you’ll be blown away. If you’ve been sleeping on Rina Sawayama, now’s your perfect chance to get to know this pop star in the making.
The Strokes – The New Abnormal
What is there to say really? After 7 years, The Strokes, one of the biggest bands of the 21st century, return with a brand new album of amazing material. While the band members have been productive working on side projects and solo careers, hearing them all together again is refreshing, novel and invigorating. Julian Casablancas remains a captivating vocalist, and the production, courtesy of Rick Rubin, slinks and slithers around with ease, giving the band their classic sound while still leaving the door open for trying new things. Don’t miss this one!
Fiona Apple – Fetch the Bolt Cutters
Fetch the Bolt Cutters has only been out for a few days, but people are already saying it’s some of Fiona Apple’s best work. The golden girl of the 90’s has been relatively silent musically since her last album, The Idler Wheel… in 2011. However, her sharp songwriting hasn’t diminished whatsoever. Her songs will gut you and empower you, and by the end of the album, you’ll be wanting to start it over again. With only her voice, her piano, and the occasional backing singer and percussion, the album is full of space, but feels intimate and in your face regardless. It is early, but I could see this album being regarded as a classic in the future.
Have you listened to any of these albums? What do you think of them? What have you been listening to during quarantine?
Here’s a playlist of my favorites from each album. Enjoy!