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10 Albums to Stream: RiFF RaFF, How to Dress Well, Mastodon, and More

riff raff, neon icon, stream

Ease into your weekend by streaming the latest releases from RiFF RaFF, Mastodon, How to Dress Well, Aphex Twin, Total Control, and more. 

1) RiFF RAFF, NEON iCON. “RiFF RaFF will finally, definitely, 100 percent release an actual album… Guests include Mac Miller, Amber Coffman of Dirty Projectors (!), Paul Wall, Slim Thug, and Mike Posner, while the producers tapped are, among others, Diplo, Harry Fraud, and DJ Mustard.” — SPIN (via BuzzFeed)

2) MastodonOnce More ‘Round the Sun “Mastodon’s new album, Once More ‘Round the Sun, hits stores on June 24 through Reprise Records… The highly-anticipated effort was recorded in Franklin, Tennessee with producer Nick Raskulinecz (Deftones, Rush, Alice in Chains) and marks the sludge metal outfit’s first LP since 2011’s The Hunter. In an interview with Paste, frontman Troy Sanders described the end result as 60-or-so minutes of ‘pure, authentic Mastodon.'” — Consequence of Sound (via iTunes First Play)

3) How to Dress Well“What Is This Heart?”. “How to Dress Well mastermind Tom Krell has been slowly releasing tracks off of his new album ‘What Is This Heart’ for the past couple of months, but rather than wait for the record’s June 24 unveiling via Weird World, Krell has gone and posted the entire thing on his own. Whether the label bosses don’t care or just aren’t awake yet, the dozen tracks that make up the follow-up to 2012’s Total Loss are there for your listening pleasure, and the limited edition deluxe double-vinyl LP is still available for pre-order. Enjoy it now while you can.” — SPIN (via

4) Aphex TwinCaustic Window. “Caustic Window was made in 1994, but was eventually scrapped in the test pressing stage for reasons that have never been made entirely clear. Now that the record’s out in the open, the decision to hold it back makes even less sense. Even from the fifteen-song set’s opening salvo, the sounds that Richard D. James is playing around with feel familiar. Distorted synths rip out the seams in tortured breakbeats and wind-worn vocal samples. Go figure that a long lost mid-’90s Aphex Twin album sounds like mid-90s Aphex Twin.” — SPIN (via YouTube)

5) Strand of Oaks, Heal. “Strand of Oaks is the recording identity of Timothy Showalter, a Philadelphia-based singer-songwriter with the grooming of a lion. Last December, the native Hoosier signed with Dead Oceans for his fourth record, the intensely personal HEAL, and that Secretly Canadian Group label debut comes out June 24. HEAL‘s second single, ‘Shut In,’ is a glorious ode to the hope of recovery. You can hear catharsis in this triumphant roots-rock anthem, a self-examined purge that matches Springsteen’s phrasing with the Replacements’ wounded alt-rock existence.” — SPIN (via Pitchfork)

6) Phish, Fuego. “Whether you know its work or just its reputation, you’ve probably already made up your mind about Phish. Maybe you love the band and its music, maybe you can’t stand them, or maybe you liked them and have since moved on to other things. Phish is one of the most celebrated live acts in all of music, with a loyal community any artist would envy, but it’s also divisive. This is a band that inspires passion with its multipart compositions, meandering improvisations, playful (often nonsensical) lyrics and unwavering positivity. For the same reasons, it also courts punchlines from its fervent detractors.” (via NPR)

7) Total Control, Typical System. “It’s hard not to jump to Joy Division comparisons when hearing Total Control’s new single ‘Flesh War.’ The track, off of their upcoming second album Typical System, has all the moody vocals, driving rhythm, and synth tones that the English legends made their name with. But this Melbourne post-punk outfit splashes a few rays of sunshine into the mix and all of a sudden, it feels like you’re (almost) listening to a positive jam. It’s not a cry from their fuzzed-out plodder ‘Sweaty,’ showing off Total Control’s ability to switch styles without losing cohesion along the way.” — SPIN (via Pitchfork)

8) A Sunny Day in Glasgow, A Sea When Absent. “A Sunny Day in Glasgow’s ability to cram an entire album’s worth of memorable passages into a single song is on full display on “In Love With Useless,” and at times you may feel compelled to be sure you’re not accidentally playing a separate track in another browser tab. But the incantatory, overlapping female vocals, the swirling guitars that are suited to classic 4AD records without slavishly recreating them, and that cacophonous section toward the end where it all collapses into a motorik fuzz? They’re all technically useless, yeah, but ecstatically so — and they’ll more than repay your love.” — SPIN (via Pitchfork)

9) Donovan BlancDonovan Blanc. “New Jersey duo Donovan Blanc, whose Joseph Black and Raymond Schwab previously recorded as Honeydrum, are releasing their band’s self-titled debut EP, on June 24 via Captured Tracks. The album begins with new wave guitars layered over bright synths, before slowly swooping into a blissed-out sonic trance. With nods to psych-inspired flutes and surf-rock’s rolling toms, the songs recall a mellower, stoned-out Monkees.” (via SPIN)

10) Range of Light Wilderness, Range of Light Wilderness“The opening song on the Range of Light Wilderness’ debut album plays like a mantra. ‘Magic Please’ is a gentle plea for some unseen force to show its power — a tautly beautiful duet between band boss Thomas Frank McDonald and drummer Jessi Campbell. While the entire 14-song self-titled set is basked in coastal light and California mysticism befitting its Big Sur birth, each track offers a distinctly different trip. With further assistance from bassist/vocalist Nick Aives, this trio explores a dozen-plus sides of psychedelic folk, from ’60s-indebted jams to synth-assisted drifts.” (via SPIN)