Spring has arrived – and there are plenty of albums to come, too. The rejuvenation season ushers in a variety of new music releases, from budding young artists to fully blossomed veterans. So whether the Bruins are basking in April showers or sniffing May flowers, there are sure to be new albums to listen to.
Read on for the Daily Bruin’s selection of albums to watch this quarter.
“The Battle of Garden’s Gate” by Greta Van Fleet
Greta Van Fleet is not about to flee the industry.
After winning a 2019 Grammy Award for their second EP, the rock band hits hard with their second album, “The Battle at Garden’s Gate.” While the band’s debut album received controversial reviews for its 70s rock sound, the band said its April 16 release focuses on darker themes like war and religion to suit a sound more mature. Inspired by the gap between poverty and wealth the band witnessed while on tour, the band said the upcoming album is a reflection of the human experience.
The album’s lead single, “My Way, Soon,” takes on a rockabilly sound layered with screaming vocals, gluing the brash track together. Yet beneath the noise, the lyrics delve into the band’s experience of touring internationally, recounting the members’ initial naivety before their pink lenses were ripped out.
Back and more transparent than ever, Greta Van Fleet is writing about a whole new world.
– Viviane Xu
[Related: Music Preview: Upcoming album releases to heat up summer with fresh themes, new sounds]
“if i could make it calm down” by girl in red
the girl in red composes the chaos of her mind.
Born Marie Ulven, the Norwegian artist has gone viral for the queer romances captured in her soft-rock tracks ‘we fell in love in October’ and ‘I want to be your girlfriend’, with each song amassing over 150 million streams on Spotify. On the other hand, his first album “if I could make it go quiet” will be anything but soft.
Compared to the songs that rocketed her up the streaming charts, the latest single from her upcoming April 30 project has jagged teeth. Co-produced by FINNEAS, “Serotonin” spins through distorted synths and pop-rock electric guitars, as Ulven attempts to tame his self-destructive masochism. “I’m terrified of what’s inside,” she confesses, almost collapsing in on herself, before the next line – “I have intrusive thoughts like cutting my hands – reverses thoughtful tone and production.
More brash and visceral than before, the new era of Girl in Red has the power to leave listeners in silent awe.
“Country Again: Side A” by Thomas Rhett
A second helping of country music might be just what everyone needs.
Son of country star Rhett Akins, Thomas Rhett is set to release the first half of his upcoming double album on April 30, celebrating the occasion by hosting a live concert the same day. Although he shares the same name as his father, the singer has already eclipsed his country music predecessor with four Grammy nominations to his name.
Regardless of Rhett’s rise, the first single from his upcoming project humbly shows how he’s staying true to his roots. The music video for “What’s Your Country Song” jumps from scenic wheat fields to lively football game nights, while Rhett sings, “Were you ever country / Back when country wasn’t cool?”
With the country in his bones, Thomas Rhett is ready to deliver.
– Viviane Xu
[Related: Music Preview: ‘Tis the season for album releases in the rush of winter quarter]
“That’s Where We Fall” by Mitski
Lasso in hand, Mitski heads west.
After contributing a single to 2020 horror flick ‘The Turning,’ the singer turns to graphic novel scores with a soundtrack for ‘This Is Where We Fall,’ a comic book slated for release this spring. . While his latest record “Be the Cowboy” pioneered his own twisted take on pop, the singer-songwriter’s upcoming project seems to be embracing another frontier: country music.
The soundtrack’s lead single, “The Baddy Man,” features Mitski returning to his guitar roots, but with a newfound jangle and twang. Seemingly spliced with dialogue of winking flirtation from the novel itself, the track trots steadily along with assured tambourine and buzz – that is, until Mitski casts a duel-ready glare:” What these dead men say they do/never will be the absolute truth.
Armed once again with a reinvented sound, Mitski is ready to roll into new sonic territories, blazing guitars.
“Long Lost” by Lord Huron
Lord Huron is in no rush to return to the indie folk scene.
Known for their haunting and languorous folk sound, many of the indie band’s tracks have appeared on popular shows such as “13 Reasons Why” and “Community.” In preparation for the release of their fourth studio album “Long Lost” on May 21, the group launched a series of livestreamed shows earlier this year that cryptically revealed the title of their upcoming album.
It appears the band have no plans to drastically alter their current sound, as the album’s second single, “Mine Forever”, stays true to the band’s signature soothing acoustic guitar and light vocals. . Yet the bold twangy bassline that accompanies the chants of unrequited love echoes something out of a Western film, teasing the possibility of subtle sonic evolution.
But then again, Lord Huron knows that you don’t have to fix what isn’t broken.
– Viviane Xu