It can be hard to sift through a sea of new releases each week, but lucky for you, we’ve got the scoop on the week’s most promising new albums:
Jenny Lewis – Voyager (July 29)
Former Rilo Kiley frontwoman, Jenny Lewis, returns with her third solo collection after a more than 5 year break that followed the dissolution of her long-time band. Still treading in the waters of emotional turmoil, as Rilo Kiley did so well, Lewis has infused her smooth vocal approach with a range of indignance and lively resistance that was missing in her previous work.
Always unabashedly feminine and angsty, her admission that “I am still into you” on “Slippery Slopes,” her grown-up version of Alanis Morissette’s “You Oughta Know” in “She’s Not Me,” with its tale of a lost love settling down with another woman, or her decrying those who view her as “just another lady without a baby” on “Just One Of The Guys,” shows Lewis’ unapologetic emotional openness. For her, vulnerability becomes strength and power. Jenny Lewis doesn’t depart from her distinctive blend of retro pop, alt country, and mid 2000s indie rock on Voyager, but her clear, mournful voice continues to act as an empathetic rallying cry for women scorned.
The Muffs – Whoop De Do (July 29)
Riot girl group The Muffs are also making a comeback with their first release in 10 years, giving us grimy pop punk led by Kim Shattuck’s battered snarl, as sweet and tipsy as a cupcake served with a side of whiskey and broken glass. Never age gracefully, Muffs. Do not go gentle into that good night of jazz standard cover albums and acoustic guitars like other career musicians. Keep on kicking and screaming until we say “stop.”
Beck – Song Reader (July 29)
In 2012, veteran alternative pop musician and all around cool guy, Beck, released an album as a collection of sheet music, intended for his audience to bring to life with their own instruments and voices. Now, a collection of venerable and varied fellow musicians have been called in to perform Beck’s Song Reader for the long-awaited LP, from Norah Jones and Jarvis Crocker, to Jack White and Laura Marling.