Sounds like: Thomas Wesley Pentz’ umpteenth EP is obvi good for a few hype club bangers (“Biggie Bounce”) and wasted freakouts, but it’s far from amazing.
Free association: When an EP is one-third remixes, you get a little disenchanted.
For fans of: Riff Raff/Mike Posner + idiots who twerk; his Block Parties; sluts.
Back to Forever
Sounds like: The Illinois girl’s second LP isn’t as perfect as her debut and first EP, but her uniquely charming combo of folk, Americana and country is spot-on.
Free association: Unforgettable: the night I saw her at the Church in a snowstorm.
For fans of: Miranda Lambert/Neko Case/Brandi Carlile x Stevie Nicks.
Sounds like: Their second’s an excellent follow-up with a focus on grooves, rhythms and percussion, all while sunny harmonies and wall-of-sound beauty abound.
Free association: Might not yield another “Go Outside,” but this one’s more robust.
For fans of: Tennis/Seapony/Summer Camp x Phil Spector; California; sunny day joints.
(Mom & Pop Music)
Sounds like: One of the coolest duos in music’s third gets awesomer as you listen because the single’s a lil’ whack, but they’re the best noise pop act in the game.
Free association: Their absurdity at piercingly loud volumes is surprisingly enjoyable.
For fans of: CSS/The Kills/Crystal Castles + the Go! Team; punk converted into pop hooks.
The Dismemberment Plan
Sounds like: The D.C.-based legends of post-punk and mathy indie rock give us something to really settle into with a fantastic, thoughtful new piece of music.
Free association: Man, I was really obsessed with Emergency & I (‘99) for a little while.
For fans of: Pinback x Ted Leo; Spoon + Les Savy Fav; Shellac/Jawbox; grown nerd rock.
Shop local: Carhartt tees at Ps & Qs