1 JAMES BLAKE Overgrown Republic
2 ADRIAN YOUNGE Adrian Younge Presents The Delfonics Wax Poetics The classic 70s Philly soul group (you might remember their iconic “Didn’t I (Blow Your Mind This Time)” single from the Jackie Brown soundtrack) return and sound as beautiful as ever on this collaboration with producer Adrian Younge. Younge, who previously scored the Black Dynamite soundtrack, is also an entertainment law professor, and he’s been killing it lately. He just followed up this Delfonics collab with an impressive Ennio Morricone-style concept album team-up with Ghostface Killah called Twelve Reasons to Die.
3 AUTRE NE VEUT Anxiety Software
4 THEE OH SEES Floating Coffin Castle Face Thee Oh Sees follow up the man-dog cover art (which fun-hating Pitchfork put on their Worst Cover Art list) on last year’s Putrifiers II with strawberries, eyeballs and teeth.
5 DEERHUNTER Monomania 4AD
6 STEEL WHEELS No More Rain
7 NICK CAVE AND THE BAD SEEDS Push The Sky Away Bad Seed
8 FLAMING LIPS The Terror Warner Brothers
9 JJ GREY AND MOFRO This River Alligator
10 KURT VILE Wakin On A Pretty Daze Matador Kurt sounds a lot happier than on the sleepy, melancholy Smoke Rings for My Halo. He’s such a dad (see this adorable video of his daughter dancing to his excellent single “Never Run Away”) but that doesn’t make this album toned down or boring. In fact, this is his most confident, epic full-blown rock & roll record. And “Wakin on a Pretty Day” is so good that after nine and a half minutes I wish it would keep going.
11 WAVVES Afraid Of Heights Warner Brothers
12 CRIME AND THE CITY SOLUTION American Twilight Mute Check out WESU DJ and Wesleying maestro Zach Schonfeld’s review of this one here.
13 BALLAKE SISSOKO At Peace Six Degrees Previously covered this one here.
14 SHOVELS AND ROPE Johnny 99 B/w Bad As Me [7-Inch] Third Man
15 CAVEMAN Caveman Fat Possum
16 STROKES Comedown Machine RCA
17 VAMPIRE WEEKEND ”Diane Young” [Single] XL
18 RON SEXSMITH Forever Endeavour Cooking Vinyl
19 CANNIBAL OX Gotham The legendary Def Jux group returns sans El-P (who’s at work on what’s going to be a very very cool collaboration with Killer Mike called Run the Jewels).
20 POND ”Giant Tortoise” [Single] Pond, who share three members with Tame Impala and a likeminded psychedelic sound, return with new material after their promising and excellently-titled debut from last year, Beard, Wives, Denim.
21 SUUNS Images Du Futur Secretly Canadian
22 RAEKWON Lost Jewlry [EP] Ice H2O We wrote about this one here.
23 DEVENDRA BANHART Mala Nonesuch
24 JAMES HUNTER SIX Minute By Minute Concord
25 OTIS TAYLOR My World Is Gone Telarc A blues album that prominently features Native American guitarist Mato Nanji and reflects on the troubled history of indigenous people in this country. A welcome suprise.
26 PARENTHETICAL GIRLS Privilege (Abridged) Marriage-Slender Means Society
27 CHVRCHES Recover [EP] Glassnote
28 RED BARAAT Shruggy Ji Sinj A unique mixture of DC-based go-go music and the British/Punjab genre of Bhangra.
29 COLLEEN GREEN Sock It To Me Hardly Art
30 JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE The 20/20 Experience RCA