As the old adage goes, “April showers bring May flowers,” that being said, welcome to perfect weather-bearing summer, everybody! Welcome to the season of sun, heat, beaches, sundresses, making money, campfires, cottaging travelling and laidback music listening and plentiful concert-going. May has been a kind month, so far, a generous one, running at us with gifts of brilliant music from musicians of every genre! As of right now, one can find a plethora of albums that have been officially released or leaked, singles dropped, mixtapes launched, collaborations facilitated and solo careers kicked off. Among the many musicians who have released music in any capacity this month are: John Mayer, Angus Stone, Julia Stone, MA_DOOM (Masta Ace and MF Doom), The Walkmen, The Temper Trap, Beach House, Santigold, Norah Jones, Patrick Watson, A$AP Rocky, and Sigur Ros. I must say, May of 2012 has been one of the best months of music that I have ever experienced and can predict that the summer’s outlook, music and weather wise, look to be golden. If these releases are leaks, I strongly recommend doing as I do and purchasing the record upon it’s official release.
NOTE: Because there are so many great albums out there right now, I’m allotting myself a tweet’s-worth of characters per album (for you rookies out there, that’s 140), while giving myself around 280 characters for my favorites so far.
John Mayer – Born And Raised
How many other people can pull CSNY for backup vocals (“Born And Raised” and reprise) on a concept-like album? With only one blemish of a song on the album, John Mayer has created a masterpiece, featuring a song that has quickly landed among my 10 favorite songs of all time, “Walt Grace’s Submarine Test, January 1967.”
Angus has created a special debut album, bettering his sister, Julia’s solo record. 13 songs of near folky perfection are what you’ll find.
Julia Stone – Let’s Forget All The Things That We Say
On her 4 track EP, Julia Stone’s voice is showcased as one of the most innocent, serene sounds that can be heard in music today.
MA_DOOM – MA_DOOM: Son Of Yvonne
MF Doom, the king of odd rap, and Masta Ace team up to bring one of the rare gems of modern old-school-style rap.
Relaxing song of the summer contenter, “We Can’t Be Beat,” kicks off this great, otherwise energetic, can’t miss album.
The Temper Trap - The Temper Trap
A very enjoyable, well rounded album featuring a great audio clip from the recent London (UK) riots… Might be 21st century’s softcore Joy Division.
Beach House – Bloom
One of the summer’s biggest releases from a band whose name is perfect for this season. “Myth” is an awesome song among 10 near perfect tracks.
Santigold – The Master of My Make Believe
I find it so hard not to love Santigold. “Big Mouth” is spectacular, Disparate Youth is a hit of the summer, multiple songs produced by Diplo…. What more could one ask for?!
One of my favorite bands, Sigur Rós, brings us yet another serene, perfect album. With brilliant instrumentals and entrancing Icelandic vocals, this is one of the best albums of the year, so far.
Norah Jones – Little Broken Hearts
Ravi Shankar’s daughter seems like an expansion of the work she did on Dangermouse’s project, Rome.
Patrick Watson – Adventures In Your Own Backyard
Montreal’s Watson, one of Canada’s most underrated musicians, brings an album similar to something one would expect from Andrew Bird.
A$AP Rocky – Goldie EP
The ringleader of the mob brings us a great set of tracks, accompanied by one of the best videos, so far, for the EP’s lead single.