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Tuesday, June 12

What music should you be looking out for this year?

The following is the first in a series of weekly posts by our summer intern, Vinnie Peluso! Vinnie will be recommending new music, talking about the experience of being a music business intern & really whatever else he wants to talk to you about. Enjoy!

Summer is always a time for great releases. It is also the halfway point of the year. So far 2012, in many ways, has exceeded expectations. Here is a short list of some exceptional albums already released throughout the year and ones to keep an eye out for.

One of the first memorable albums for 2012 was Attack on Memory by Cloud Nothings. Perhaps it was the fact that Steve Albini engineered the album or the fact that singer/guitarist Dylan Baldi collaborated with an actual band this time around, but Cloud Nothings presented a creative leap leaning more towards Slint in some parts than the bedroom-pop of the first two albums and the results were successful. Cloud Nothings are without a doubt, a band to watch in the years to come.

As a fan of complex patterns in music and tapping, all falling under the umbrella of math rock, it would not come as a shock that  I am a huge fan of Maps & Atlases. I was thrilled to hear about the release of Beware and Be Grateful. This album expands upon the sound they have been approaching since their inception. M&A finally give “Be Three Years Old,” a song that has been in their repertoire as early as 2007. It does not disappoint. Neither does the heavily rhythmic cut, “Silver Self.” Check out Dave Davison and company shred through the track at The Earl in Atlanta, GA in the link below.

Good news for any fans of Cap’n Jazz, Joan of Arc, Make Believe, or Owen fans, Owls have reunited! Their self titled album from 2001 released on Jade Tree Records. For anyone not familiar with Owls, it contains the original line up of Cap’n Jazz. I was lucky enough to see Cap’n Jazz at Wicker Park Fest in 2010 and they did not disappoint. Below is a link to “Everyone is My Friend.”

Genre-pushing artist, Death Grips, composed of MC Ride, Flatlander, and Zach Hill (of Hella-fame) released their debut album on Epic Records and follow up to last summer’s excellent mix-tape, Ex-Military, in April. The Money Store is one of two full-length albums to be released this year. The other half is titled No Love and is scheduled for release in the second half of 2012. The downside to this is that Death Grips has opted out of touring until their second album is finished. For as mind-blowing and exhilarating as The Money Store was, it is easy to expect the unexpected from this group.

Odd Future affiliate Frank Ocean released “Pyramids” last week which will be available on his debut studio album, Orange Channel, set for release in mid-July. “Ambitious” and “sprawling” are two words that come to mind when listening to this 10 minute epic. If this track is any indication of how the rest of the album will be, it will surely been a standout of the year.

After taking time off to release Avey Tare’s solo album Down There in 2010 and Panda Bear’s Tomboy in 2011, Animal Collective will release their long-awaited proper follow up to 2009’s Merriweather Post Pavilion with Centipede Hz this September. The Honeycomb/Gotham 7” was released last month and resonates more with the feel and ambience of Strawberry Jam (2007). Tour dates and ticket info below.

Lastly, on a somewhat related music note, James Murphy of LCD Soundsystem can be seen in Rick Alverson film The Comedy, starring Eric Wareheim and Tim Heidecker of Tim & Eric Awesome Show, Great Job! It was shown at Sundance earlier this year.

While I have not even begun to scratch the surface, these albums have been important to me and I feel shape how 2012 will be looked back upon musically. There is definitely more to come. What albums do you feel are the best of 2012? What are you most excited for? What were you most disappointed by?

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