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Five New Releases You Need To Listen To This Week

by Photo of Ross Bernhardt

Laura Marling, Action Bronson Courtney Barnett and James Bay all put out terrific albums this week.

Five New Releases You Need To Listen To This Week

As temperatures slowly start to rise, more and more good music is being released by artists. We still have a ways to go for some of the most hotly anticipated albums of the year, but there's a lot of great stuff already out there everyone should be tuned in to (case in point: last week's To Pimp A Butterfly by Kendrick Lamar should be required listening for everyone for months on end).

But this week, several albums came out that you should know about. One is the debut of a rising rap talent from Queens, another is a beautiful gem from a British songstress, and the third is a shimmering pop/folk work from another British singer. Take a look at my five picks below and go out and listen to these albums.

Mr. Wonderful - Action Bronson

The long-awaited debut from Action Bronson finally dropped on Monday. After several mixtapes and fantastic features, Bronsolino drops an album drenched in the best kind of braggadocio. Not everything on the album works, but the quality of the production and the level of features Bronson is able to secure (ranging from Chance the Rapper to frequent collaborator Party Supplies) is tremendous. With everything that Bronson has going for him over the past week (album drop, new music video with Chance, announcement of an Action Bronson Cook Book, and tossing a fan off stage and then going right back to rapping at his Terminal 5 album release show), a few loose ends aren't going to really matter to him. The album is definitely worth checking out.

Sometimes I Sit And Think, And Sometimes I Just Sit - Courtney Barnett

Australia has produced no shortage of amazing musicians, and Courtney Barnett is one of them. Her sophomore album brings more of the same charming, deadpan speak-singing over fuzzy garage folk rock, and it's brimming with great moments both high and low. The album starts off fast and then gets very contemplative. Barnett brings confidence to her material, and she was one of the artists I truly regretted missing during SXSW in Austin last week.

Chaos And The Calm - James Bay

James Bay fits right into the niche of pop folk giants like Ed Sheeran, The Lumineers and others, and there's definitely room for everyone. Bay showcases his strong songwriting skills and a powerful voice on his album that features several anthemic songs tailor-made for concert sing-alongs. But Bay strikes a chord during several ballads to show his versatility. While the overall sound might be a bit too pop for some people, that doesn't take away from the excellence across the board here.

Short Movie - Laura Marling

I tend to hyperbolize when I hear beautiful female voices, but there aren't many words that do justice to just how gorgeous Laura Marling's is. Her new album Short Movie epitomizes all of her amazing quality. Her voice positively shimmers over the 13 songs, crackling with intensity at times and showing incredible finesse and care at others. Everything sounds so easy for her, and the tapestry she weaves over the course of the album is simply mesmerizing. She sounds just as amazing on her fifth album as she did on her first.

I Don't Like Shit, I Don't Go Outside: An Album By Earl Sweatshirt - Earl Sweatshirt

I'm still not entirely sure what it is all of the Odd Future members are doing half the time. I don't necessarily get a lot of their music. But I listened to Earl Sweatshirt's followup to Doris and it was a very relaxing, albeit strange listen. Earl asserts his control over a myriad style of beats and production, and it was quite contemplative to take in. I'm going to need a few more listens to try and dig into what else Earl is trying to do here, but it's a work that merits repeat listens.

What new albums are you listening to this week? Let us know in the comments section!

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