We’re just past the halfway point for 2015, so here’s a list of 15 albums that just might be worth your time and attention.
A mix featuring songs from those albums is below.
Let’s hope the second half of the year is as good as the first. With Nathaniel Rateliff, Langhorne Slim, and Rayland Baxter all releasing albums in August alone, it sure looks promising…
1. Houndmouth – Little Neon Limelight
Hoosier quartet channels The Band and other americana greats, creating an album that gives a nod to its influences while creating something wholly rollicking and unique.
2. Bop English – Constant Bop
White Denim frontman keeps the rock and the weirdness, dabbles in psychedelics and folk on his impressive solo debut.
3. Small Houses – Still Talk; Second City
Michigander folkie with a whiskey-soaked voice sings wistful songs about love and loss — does it very well.
4. Tyler Lyle – The Native Genius of Desert Plants
One of the most underrated songwriters in the States releases a classic songwriter’s album, full of clever hooks and thoughtful lyrics.
5. Courtney Barnett – Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit
Punk-rock sass and attitude from Australia’s newest favorite female southpaw, Ms. Barnett’s debut record delivers intelligently smarmy lyrics and crunchy, catchy rock melodies.
6. Leon Bridges – Coming Home
Texan singer-songwriter releases infinitely listenable album full of bluesy soul, manages to channel multiple musical legends without an ounce pastiche.
7. Lord Huron – Strange Trails
With plenty of time to enter their techno-rap phase later, LA-based indie folksters deliver more of the same greatness from their debut on their sophomore effort.
8. Mathien – The Freedom Tapes
Midwestern funk-rocker somehow manages to sound like a bizarre mix of Stevie Wonder and Justin Timberlake, and makes it work quite well.
9. Palace – Chase the Light
UK indie rockers sound like a slower, folksier, Britishier version of My Morning Jacket on an impressive EP.
10. The Decemberists – What a Terrible World, What a Beautiful World
Repeatedly-great Oregonian folk rockers seem incapable of making a bad record.
11. Pokey LaFarge – Something in the Water
Old-timey songwriter branches out some on his seventh record, but keeps the catchy, timeless songwriting in tact.
12. Laura Marling – Short Movie
You do not want to be Laura Marling’s ex-boyfriend. Sure, the songs about you will be clever and daring and perfectly-executed, but they will also destroy you from the inside out.
13. Fort Frances – No One Needs to Know Our Name
Perhaps the Windy City’s best kept secret, Fort Frances’s newest EP is 20 minutes of indie rock greatness, full of intelligent yet unpretentious songwriting.
14. Spirit Family Reunion – Hands Together
Outstanding raggedy, raw back-porch singalongs from New York’s best country-folk band not named The Felice Brothers.
15. Sufjan Stevens – Carrie & Lowell
Detroit songwriter returns to folk roots, releases a beautiful sad bastard record.
1. Fort Frances – These Are the Mountains Moving
2. Bop English – Struck Matches
3. Mathien – Good News
4. Spirit Family Reunion – Wake up, Rounder
5. Leon Bridges – Flowers
6. Courtney Barnett – Pedestrian at Best
7. Pokey LaFarge – Wanna Be Your Man
8. Sufjan Stevens – Death with Dignity
9. Lord Huron – Dead Man’s Hand
10. Houndmouth – Say It
11. Small Houses – Old Habits
12. Laura Marling – Walk Alone
13. The Decemberists – 12-17-12
14. Palace – Kiloran
15. Tyler Lyle – Young Men
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If you like any (or all) of the songs, please support the artists and buy the albums, see them in concert, get a t-shirt, and all of that other good stuff.
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