There’s actually a huge boom of quality bands in the New York City indie scene right now, particularly in the hipster enclave of Brooklyn. Bands like Dirty Projectors, Grizzly Bear, The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, and Animal Collective have all released strong albums this year, and are bringing a strong pop sensibility to the typically mopey indie scene.
I’m a big fan of new bands that adopt the late ’80s/early ’90s dream pop sound of My Bloody Valentine, Jesus and Mary Chain and others. Check out the aforementioned Pains of Being Pure at Heart, Silversun Pickups, M83, and Bat for Lashes if you also dig this sound.
Even more retro is the ’60s girl group vibe of Scottish band Camera Obscura, and St. Vincent’s offbeat orchestral chamber pop.
On the hip hop front, fans of Lupe Fiasco, Jurassic 5, and other artists who adopt an old-school hip hop sound will want to check out the new Wale album that just came out, and Kid Cudi‘s Man on the Moon: The End of Day. Wu-Tang fans have been waiting for Raekwon’s Only Built 4 Cuban Linx II for a while now, and thankfully it continues the group’s tradition of cinematic beats and kung-fu movie references. As for recent singles, I like Jay-Z and Alicia Keys “Empire State of Mind,” Rihanna (w/Young Jeezy) “Hard,” Drake’s “Forever” (featuring tons of guests and a killer Eminem verse that’s better than anything on his recent albums), and Kei$ha’s “Tik Tok.”
Anyone else have any new music picks? My fellow “guys” want to chime in?