Modern Vampires of the City
Sounds like: Their brilliant third is an achievement because it’s everything we loved in their first two, but with more nuance, darkness and attention to detail.
Free association: Try and find something negative to say about ‘em. Good luck.
For fans of: Peter Gabriel/Paul Simon x Ra Ra Riot, Talking Heads, Manhattanites.
Random Access Memories
Sounds like: Everyone’s going nuts for the Parisian DJs/electronic dance duo’s first in eight years, and with due cause: This record is brilliant Euro-disco pop.
Free association: Their weapons are many: guests, piano, samples and hot guitars.
For fans of: Giorgio Moroder, Nile Rodgers & Pharrell, Air/Chemical Brothers.
Sounds like: The Bristol, U.K. trip-hop pioneer’s best effort in ages, rivaling the brilliance of his ‘95 debut, Maxinquaye, and silencing haters with a giant “Shush.”
Free association: The way he employs lady voice is magic—black, blunted magic.
For fans of: Massive Attack, Lee “Scratch” Perry x Sneaker Pimps, gothic hypnosis.
Sounds like: The sophomore synth project of Devon Welsh and Matthew Otto is a hypnotic and expertly executed project of haunting, emotional rockness.
Free association: One can only imagine what Welsh’s life is actually like. Weird.
For fans of: Depeche Mode x George Michael + Twin Peaks, Grimes, confessionals.
Brand New Heavies
Sounds like: Born in West London, the jazz funk pioneers’ 10th is a fantastic tribute to disco and retro funk grooves, with contagious, kinetic energy.
Free association: This record shouts sequins, disco balls, afros and the ‘70s.
For fans of: Jungle Brothers x Maceo Parker + Jamiroquai/Corduroy, funkin’ it up.