With so many releases flying at you, here are recommended vetted listens from Nialler9 for you this week, as collated in the Nialler9 New Albums Spotify playlist, updated weekly.
HAIM – Something To Tell You
Haim’s debut album exceeded expectations for a new act. The Haim Sisters’ mix Fleetwood Mac-style soft rock, ’60s girl-group sways, early 90s pop/rock and pristine pop. Their second album isn’t a radical departure but nor should it be. Haim are so good at recalling vintage pop music while creating music of the now in a glossy but human fashion. As singles ‘Little Of Your Love’, “Want You Back’ and ‘Right Now’ have already revealed, Something to Tell You revels in heartbreak. But those aren’t the only highlights – ‘Ready For You’ plucks up an ’90s rhythm in the style of George Michael, the title song’s bass and drum combo keep things rolling in the Peach Pit, ‘You Never Knew’ might well be a Fleetwood Mac song (produced by Dev Hynes) and ‘Walking away’ has ’90s R&B tones. Haim should be too sickly sweet but their pop conjuring act is too good to dismiss.
Broken Social Scene – Hug Of Thunder
Broken Social Scene still make albums. Nevermind making albums but a group of 17 members actually talking and organising regularly enough to do more than jam is the most impressive feat. Their fifth album may have taken seven years to arrive but the best thing about it is while it holds on to the Broken Social Scene pattern of bombastic indie-rock (which will likely be anywhere Kevin Drew and 16 other people may be) but Hug Of Thunder has a slightly different slant. Production by Joe Chiccarelli makes it sound enough apart from their previous discography to feel new. Leslie Feist (Feist) and Emily Haines (Metric) are back. It all adds to up a sense of invigoration and the bluster and bombast feels justified when it’s not papering over the songwriting cracks as it has in the past.
Toro Y Moi – Boo Boo
Chaz Bundick’s fifth album retains that soft retro electronic pop glow that has characterised most of his releases. Boo Boo feels like the one most indebted to the ’80s in tone and sonics. It’s languid and warm and perfect, as the video album stream suggests, for a summery drive.
Clams Casino – Instrumental Mixtape 4
A free download EP of spacey beats and textures from Clams.
DJ Shadow – The Mountain has Fallen EP
A surprise drop of four post The Mountain Shall Fall tracks featuring Nas, Danny Brown and Steven Price along with a drum’n’bass turntablist style instrumental.