May 8: “Neck of the Woods” by Silversun Pickups
Silversun Pickups is set to release its third album, “Neck of the Woods,” in early May. The Grammy nominated foursome looks to continue the success of its past records. Silversun Pickups use a lot of fuzzy guitars, and Brian Aubert’s vocals are often compared to that of The Smashing Pumpkins. The new album has been said to sound prettier and dreamier than previous efforts and apparently has the feel of a horror movie.
May 15: “Bloom” by Beach House
The dream pop duo of Alex Scally and Victoria Legrand is gearing up its fourth album for an early summer release. The previous record, “Teen Dream,” was critically lauded and reached a wider audience, thanks in part to being released through Sub Pop Records. The group looks to advance its ethereal sound on “Bloom.” The first single off the upcoming record is “Myth,” which showcases the familiar sound it tries to improve upon.
May 28: “Valtari” by Sigur Ros
The Icelandic post-rock band is returning with its sixth studio album in late May. The band’s ethereal sound stems from its minimalism and incorporation of classical music. Jonsi Birgisson's use of bowed guitar — where an electric guitar is played with a bow similar to a violin — helps signify the group’s unique sound. The lead single “Ekki Mukk” is an almost eight-minute journey that remains captivating throughout. Georg Holm, the bands bassist, stated, “I can honestly say that it’s the only Sigur Rós record I have listened to for pleasure in my own house after we’ve finished it."
May 29: “Here” by Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros
The huge folk ensemble, sometimes incorporating over 10 members in shows, is releasing its sophomore album, “Here,” May 29. The group is widely known for its hit, “Home,” which was featured on an NFL commercial. Edward Sharpe and friends make jangly folk songs that feature the vocal harmonies of Sharpe and Jade Castrinos. The attitude of the band is nicely summed up by the lyrics off the new song “Man on Fire,” which states, “I want the whole damn world to come dance with me.”
June 5: “The Stoned Immaculate” by Curren$y
Curren$y is releasing “The Stoned Immaculate” on June 5. One of the busiest rappers in hip hop, this will be his eighth studio album on top of the countless mixtapes he has released over the past few years. Curren$y has a laid back flow and slick delivery. He has been sitting right between the underground and mainstream for sometime now, and he is perfectly content to remain there and cover his favorite topics of marijuana, cars and girls.
June 5: “Live from the Underground”” by Big K.R.I.T.
The do-it-all Mississippi native gained a lot of followers after releasing his self produced “K.R.I.T. Wuz Here” mixtape in 2010. After following that up with a few mixtapes, Big K.R.I.T. is finally set to release his proper studio debut “Live from the Underground” June 5. What he lacks in pure rapping skills, he makes up for in production quality. His southern rap sound has gotten him heralded as the next successor of southern rap legends Outkast and UGK.
July 10: “Swing Lo Magellan” by Dirty Projectors
Dirty Projectors are an art pop group led by multi-instrumentalist Dave Longstreth. The group received critical acclaim for 2009’s “Bitte Orca.” Dirty Projectors use a lot of interesting vocal combinations and tempo changes to make interesting and unpredictable music. Its first few albums were very scatterbrained and misguided but it found its footing on “Bitte Orca.” The new single, “Gun Has No Trigger,” is promising the group will continue on its past album’s success.
July 17: “Life Is Good” by Nas
Nasty Nas is returning this summer with “Life Is Good,” his 10th studio album. The Queensbridge native hasn’t released a solo album in four years, so anticipation is extremely high. “Nasty” and “The Don” are the first two singles off “Life Is Good”, and Nas appears to be in peak form as he shows off his lyrical prowess on the tracks. Nas is hoping to take over hip-hop and prove he is still one of the best emcees alive.