I’ll admit it. I mailed it in this month. Between work and watching every game of Euro 2008, there was little time left for music in June. I promise you, July’s mix will be fantastic. Plus, there will be a little bonus mix showing up in the next week or so.
That said, there were still a number of good albums in June:
- Lil’ Wayne – Tha Carter III: He’s the best, maine. He deeeeed it. Weezy finally puts together an official album that matches the potential he’s shown on his mixtapes. I still can’t get over the fact that such a weird little guy is such a major pop star, but I’m not complaining.
- The Plastic Constellations – We Appreciate You: Don’t you hate it when you newly discover a band you like, only to find out that this is their last album (see also, The Narrator)?
- The M’s – Real Close Ones: These guys are criminally underrated. This one lacks some of the raucousness of Future Women, but is still a great soundtrack for late summer nights drinking on your porch.
- S.L. Jones – C.O.L.O.R.S.: Surprisingly solid debut from Killer Mike’s laid back weed carrier.
- The Selmanaires – The Air Salesman: For such a horrible city, Atlanta’s got some decent bands.
- Spec Boogie – Dollar Sign Language: Latest mixtape from the Loosie representative. He’s not a mind-blowing MC, but he’s solid and has an impeccable ear for beats. If he could just get some from Erykah Badu, he’d be getting Jay Electronica-type hype.
As always, let me know if there was something good that I missed.
1) Wu-Tang Clan – Watch Your Mouth
When there’s an album coming out that I know I’ll want to hear, I try to hold off from listening to the early leaked tracks. Sometimes, it means I miss a gem when the early single doesn’t end up making the album. This shit is classic Wu, even if De La used the beat before RZA.
3) S.L. Jones – American Gangster
It’s a shame there are too many anonymous weed carriers on this. The beat is pretty insane…much more adventurous than anything you’d expect to hear on the typical Southern rap album. I’d of much rather heard Killer Mike on this rather than the pretty atrocious “Super Head.”
4) Lil’ Wayne (ft. Fabolus & Juelz Santana) – Nothin’ On Me
Fabo for the win. “I pop up like Xzibit, but given I’m at your crib it’s / not to put no fucking fish tanks up in your Civic /f*ck gettin’ your ride pimped, you’ll get hog-tied, whipped / have you curled up in the trunk like fried shrimp.”
5) Jhi Ali – So Blowed
The young Alabama native made a pretty good summer song here, rapping about getting bombed over some breezy acoustic guitar. Sounds like being 17.
6) Lil’ Wayne – Let the Beat Build
If I can ever be bothered to re-sequence Tha Carter III on my iPod, this one will definitely be the closer. This is Wayne’s much-deserved, triumphant victory lap.
7) Atmosphere – Not Another Day
Slug’s emo-raps get tiresome over a whole album, but can sound great for a song or two.
8) Spec Boogie – New York I Love You
I like how Spec Boogie’s confident enough to be an accent to the track, rather than trying to dominate it. And the way his intensity builds up to the end is pretty awesome.
9) The Plastic Constellations – So Many Friends
Like Tapes ‘N Tapes, these guys hail from Minnesota. Like Tapes ‘N Tapes, they aren’t afraid to use horns to good effect. Like Tapes ‘N Tapes, they can make some anthemic shout-a-long’s. Like Tapes ‘N Tapes, this is rock music that’s right in my wheelhouse.
10) Brendan Canning – Churches Under the Stairs
The second record in the “Broken Social Scene Presents” series. This one fails to match Kevin Drew’s Spirit If from last year. It starts out easily on par, but seems to peter out over the second half, unfortunately.
11) The M’s – Pigs Fly
I feel like this is the type of pretty song that My Morning Jacket should be making, rather than the turd sandwich that is Evil Urges. If you’ve got a singer with a good voice, let him sing, dammit.
12) The Selmanaires – New Plan
Speaking of MMJ, this one kind of reminds me of “Cobra” but with David Byrne replacing Jim James on vocals.
13) Brendan Canning – Love Is New
If I were still single, this would definitely go on my “ohmygodIgotagirltocomebacktomyplace” playlist.
14) The Plastic Constellations – Floated Down and Flew Around
I hate when this song comes on during my walk to work in the morning. It’s pretty much impossible not to sing along to those “whoo’s” in the last minute, which kind of makes me look like a maniac as I’m walking down a quiet street in a suit and tie.
15) Wolf Parade – Fine Young Cannibals
I was disappointed in the At Mount Zoomer. In a lot of the songs, Spencer Krug’s retro 80’s synths are way too prominent and the guitars seem lost in the mix. But this song here shares a lot of the funky sultriness of the aforementioned “Love Is New” which is a winning look.
16) The M’s – How Could You
This song sounds like last call at a fantastically awesome and shitty bar.
17) James Pants – We’re Through
I don’t know how much I actually like this bit of retro electro weirdness, but dammit if it wasn’t stuck in my head most of June.
18) Bonde Das Gulosas – Tira O Seu Da Reta
Since this is in Portuguese, I’ve got no idea what they’re saying. But I like to think of it as a tribute to Marcos Senna. Congrats.