Release Recap: February 2022

February seemed to fly by! Did you miss any new releases? Were you too caught up in the new Mitski and Beach House records to listen to anything else? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Here are some of our favorite releases from the month of February!

See Through You – A Place to Bury Strangers

It’s been four years since fresh music from A Place to Bury Strangers has dropped, and thank goodness it’s finally here. Despite a major lineup change since Pinned, Oliver Ackerman has proven to still be a shoegaze/noise-rock force to be reckoned with. The album features an abundance of fuzz and distortion on the guitar (the band’s signature sound) that warp and wind around Oliver’s droning delay-ridden vocals. Personally, I always love when A Place to Bury Strangers drops a track that leans either dance-y or extremely noisy. This album melds the two more than any of their past, with tracks like “Hold on Tight” and “Nice of You to Be There For Me” that crank up the tempo and noise. -Makenzie Creden

Texas Moon – Leon Bridges and Khruangbin

Their second EP once again demonstrates the merit of this Texan collaboration. Bridges’s powerful vocals and Khruangbin’s distinctive, psychedelic blend of international influences are a stunning pairing. ‘B-Side’ is a highlight on an all-around great release. -Mark Monette

Ants From Up There – Black Country, New Road

For their sophomore album, BNCR created an entire listening experience, as the best way to enjoy this album is to listen to it through its entirety. With the use of a variety of instrumental tracks and powerful lyrics, Ants From Up There both explores the highest highs and lowest lows. Some of my favorite tracks on the album are Chaos Space Marine (which the band argues is the “best song they’ve ever written”), Concorde and Basketball shoes. -Emily Schwarz

Laurel Hell – Mitski

On Mitski’s sixth full-length studio release, she once again combines her talent for instrumentalism and songwriting with her powerful voice to create a stunning album. As with her previous album, Be the Cowboy, she pairs serious and contemplative lyrics with upbeat, sometimes 80s inspired melodies, such as on Love Me More. In Working for the Knife, she addresses the turmoil of making the wrong choices in life. She is able to create messages that everyone can relate to, which is one of the main reasons people love Mitski. I highly recommend this album to those who enjoy songs with dramatic, soaring instrumentals (and a little bit of piano). -Clara Copps

Happy Accident / idkwntht – Tomberlin

Since interviewing Tomberlin at Pitchfork in the fall, we’ve been eagerly awaiting the new music she mentioned. Idkwntht is a delicate ballad with Tomberlin’s signature vocal harmonies. The exciting thing about this track is the saxophone. I mean, wow. I was not expecting that. Happy Accident is a more emotionally charged track that features an electric guitar with a bit of distortion, a new sound for Tomberlin. It suits her well, allowing her vocals to shine in a new way as she delivers more powerful melodies to accompany the slight fuzz. -Makenzie Creden

Loose – Grace Ives

Following her 2019 album 2nd, Grace Ives delivers excitement with her new single Loose. It’s a bright and poppy tune worth blasting, combining her powerful vocals with unique beats. Her ability to disperse seemingly random noises into the song and give them a fun musicality makes this a song worth listening to, and possibly dancing around in your room! -Josie Stahler

Pompeii – Cate Le Bon 

The Welsh songwriter’s sixth studio album is a refreshing stream of independent music that embraces a unique mix of musical textures. Le Bon’s skill as a producer shines through the entirety of this record.  Layers of synthesizers, saxophone, clarinet, and percussion whirl throughout Pompeii, and this creative instrumentation allows Le Bon to explore new sonic possibilities. The songwriting on Pompeii is a dreamy haze reflective of 80’s pop but through the lens of Le Bon’s very personal style of composition. This feels like a marriage of some of the more introspective moments of new wave with the experimental landscapes of 21st century art rock and synth pop, and it works phenomenally well. Pompeii is a soothing listen and a much-needed reprieve. -Erik Anderson

Once Twice Melody – Beach House

Beach house does it again by providing us with an ethereal escape from our everyday lives with their new album Once Twice Melody. It’s clear that with their 8th album Beach house is staying true to character, and giving us an array of imagery with this long-awaited album. The album takes the listener on a long winding journey of moods and once the last song ends you find yourself reaching to play it all over again. -Sam Short

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