The New Pornographers – Whiteout Conditions

The New Pornographers are back with Whiteout Conditions, the new full-length release on the band’s own Collected Works Records. There’s a refreshingly different sonic approach on this record that amplifies the group’s gift for song hooks and catchy meldoies. I can’t get enough of this relentlessly exuberant, clever, and addictive power pop record, exemplified by the title track “Whiteout Conditions”:

And tracks like “High Ticket Attractions”:

Music Inspired by Ghost in the Shell

I haven’t seen it yet, but I have been streaming the soundtrack to Ghost in the Shell and its sweeping, expansive score / soundtrack with amazing tracks from the likes of Johnny Jewel (of Chromatics and Glass Candy fame), Gary Numan, Tricky, Nils Frahm (who teams up with DJ Shadow), Boys Noize, Above & Beyond, IO Echo and Ki Theory. Composer Kenji Kawai, who penned the score to the original 1995 Ghost in the Shell film, also makes an appearance with some help from Steve Aoki:

Spoon – Hot Thoughts

Spoon has done it again: the Austin indie rockers have taken their knack for amazing melody and applied it to a broader sonic canvas than ever before on their new long play Hot Thoughts. Britt Daniel’s signature snarl carries the tunes, which feature a lot more keyboards, effects, and other treatments that show a real experimentation and mastery of their songwriting craft:

Pile – A Hairshirt of Purpose

Boston indie rockers Pile are releasing their fifth album A Hairshirt of Purpose and it’s already a top contender for 2017 album of the year. At a time where we all need a little more wailing and ferocious expenditure of rage through melodic noise rock, Pile delivers the goods: hard, aggressive layers of Girls Against Boys coated in Shellac:

But like anyone who rages against the machine for an extended period of time, parts of album slow down, grow dark, and get all introspective before the rage builds again and screams out for a Thirty Ought Six: