This past summer I was in Malaysia doing research on substituting rice husk ash into concrete mixtures and although that was as exciting as it sounds, I also managed to find some time to listen to music. This summer was filled with some excellent new releases (notably Slow Focus by Fuck Buttons) but I also finally got around to listening to some music on my lengthy “To listen to” list. I thought I’d share three albums from this past summer that really stood out to me from this list. All three are from very different genres, so hopefully there’s something for everyone. Hit the jump to see my top three album discoveries of the summer.
1) Cross -JusticeD.A.N.C.E. Genesis Stress Waters of Nazareth Random Access Memories
2) The Monitor - Titus Andronicus
The Monitor is a concept album loosely based on both the American Civil War and the band’s muddy New Jersey roots. Add in frontman Patrick Stickles’s furious energy and raging lyrics, and you have something so perfect you wonder why nobody thought to do it before. To be honest, lyrics are generally not a priority for me when I listen to music – I’ve listened to The Blue Album at least 50 times and still don’t know most of the words to the songs. But on The Monitor, the passion with which Stickle’s delivers his lines is second to none. His ability to convey miserable anger and disgust coupled with an unerring will to live is delivered hand in hand with the hardest rocking songs of 2010. “Richard II” was the song that got me hooked, but if you’re into epic ballads you’re in for a treat: five of the ten songs clock in at over seven minutes and not a second of those songs is wasted. Even the voice actors delivering period-era lines from figures like Lincoln, Davis, and William Lloyd Garrison do their work perfectly. If you’re not banging along on your virtual drum set at the end of “Four Score and Seven,” you should get that checked out.
3) The Year of Hibernation -Youth LagoonMontana Posters July