X Ambassadors- Renegades- After bursting into the alt-rock scene last year with their song ‘Jungle,’ X Ambassadors have finally released their debut album, VHS. The album is rollicking and yet poignant, full of nostalgic 90s flashback interludes. ‘Renegades’ is a great example of the spirit of the album, the song hails the game changers, the underdogs, outlaws, the “Spielbergs and Kubricks.” It’s catchy and fun, great for driving and dancing [though probably not at the same time]. VHS is full of great songs including the hit ‘Jungle’ featuring Jamie N. Commons, ‘B.I.G.,’ ‘Superpower,’ ‘Loveless,’ and ‘Naked,’ to name a few. The album and the band are well worth checking out.
Suggestion by K. Hules.
Leon Bridges- Coming Home- ‘Coming Home’ is the title and opening track of Leon Bridges’ first album, released in late June. This heartfelt love song is a nostalgia-inducing track reminiscent of Motown. Or, a more modern comparison likens him to longtime R&B musician Raphael Saadiq. Like his soulful predecessors, Bridges crafts and performs irresistible songs that will have you swaying back and forth. ‘Coming Home’ is an instant hit and is a Top 10 Most Viral Track on Spotify. Other tunes worth checking out on his first album include the gospel song ‘River’ and ‘Lisa Sawyer’.
Suggestion by Kate J. Gonzales.
Miguel- Coffee- This track is one of the singles off of Miguel’s new album, WILDHEART. His soft speaking/singing voice brings the listener right in to the song. When he sings or speaks, what he says is believable, where other artists seem to be just saying the words with no real meaning or feeling about what they are saying.
Suggestion by Naomi Lucchesi.
Mike Posner- Be As You Are- Posner’s song tells the story of a life of hard knocks and bad decisions. The lyrics circle around a message of maternal acceptance as he drags himself home to his mother and she tells him “There are moments when you fall to the ground/But you are stronger than you feel you are now/You don’t always have to speak so loud, no/Just be as you are.” The Detroit native is a long way from his breathy ‘Bow Chicka Wow Wow’ days and his musical growth shows in his stripped down tracks. His showcased vocals are now closer to Passenger than a Jonas brother. ‘Be As You Are’ is off of his new EP The Truth which dropped at the end of June.
Suggestion by K. Hules.
Gallant- Weight in Gold- This lush song is a throwback that sounds like it came off of an old 45 record and could have been played in an ’80s romance film. The slow tempo belays the catchy chorus and sparkling instrumentation. A great song for slow dancing, sex scenes, and soulful singing in the shower.
Suggestion from Naomi Lucchesi.