30-Second Album Reviews

The Tragically Hip, J. Cole, BTS, Half Moon Run, Czarface & MF Doom, Ferraro, Olivia Rodrigo and more.

Saskadelphia album cover

The Tragically Hip

Saskadelphia

Genre: Rock
Sound: Raw, rocking, ready for summer
If you like: Hip, Hip, Hip
Why you should listen: It’s a Canadian music fan’s dream come true, as previously unreleased “new” music from The Tragically Hip has been found—and it’s awesome, not filler. Rough, raw and raging, it’s more blues-rock glory from the band’s breakthrough Road Apples sessions.
Best track: Ouch

 

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Cyclorama album cover

Polo & Pan

Cyclorama

Genre: Electronic
Sound: Fantastical, otherworldly sound effects mix with lustful French vocals and bop-worthy beats
If you like: Jungle, NEIL FRANCES, Tourist
Why you should listen: If electro-quirk is a thing, this is it. Infectious basslines puncture kaleidoscopic melodies in this ethereal, sun-drenched summer record.
Best track: Tunnel (feat. Channel Tres)

 

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BTS, The Best album cover

BTS

BTS, The Best

Genre: K-pop
Sound: Vocally perfect Japanese-inspired pop with an electronic twist
If you like: Blackpink, Seventeen, Exo
Why you should listen: BTS is one of the most popular bands in the world for good reason. Their catchiness is unmatched, and this foray into J-pop shouldn’t be missed.
Best track: Film out

 

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No Gods No Monsters album cover

Garbage

No Gods No Monsters

Genre: Grunge
Sound: Classic Garbage: thrumming bass, hard-rock guitar and growling, angst-ridden vocals
If you like: PJ Harvey, Hole, The Breeders
Why you should listen: Grunge gods Garbage are back with another album that’s unapologetically angry, rife with political commentary and perfect for the next generation of angry teens.
Best track: Girls Talk

 

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We Will Rise EP album cover

Blue Lab Beats

We Will Rise EP

Genre: Jazztronica, Afro beats, hip hop
Sound: Jazz with luscious instruments that sets off a vibe
If you like: D’Angelo, Kaytranada, The Internet
Why you should listen: Summer is fast approaching and if you’re thinking which artist pairs well with good times and unique, chilling sounds that feels like you’re in the moment.
Best track: Blow You Away (Delilah) (feat. Ghetto Boy)

 

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Hope for the Best album cover

Paris Pick

Hope For The Best

Genre: Soul-pop
Sound: Old-school brass, funkadelic bass and upbeat, pure-hearted hooks
If you like: Bahamas, Beach Bunny, Kimya Dawson
Why you should listen: Hailing from the Yukon, feel-good indie artist Paris Pick charms with her upbeat, hunky-dory tracks fit for falling in love over a shared milkshake at a retro soda shop. It’s perfectly quirky.
Best track: Beautiful Day

 

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The Off-Season album cover

J. Cole

The Off-Season

Genre: Rap
Sound: Self-probing lyrics ride BPM-raising chords in arrangements made for sports highlight reels
If you like: Aminé, Bas
Why you should listen: In sports, the off-season is a time to reflect on your game. J. Cole makes it personal reflecting on his massive success, inviting top-of-their game rappers like Lil Baby, 21 Savage and Cam’ron to jump in on tracks, making The Off-Season his first-ever album with guest features.
Best track: Pride.is.the.devil

 

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My Molecules album cover

I M U R

My Molecules

Genre: R&B alt-pop
Sound: Sexy, swaggering hi hats and electro beats layer with cool, cascading vocals that taunt lovers and grapple with demons
If you like: Allan Rayman, Banks, Drama
Why you should listen: This Vancouver trio engineers seductive tracks with head-nodding hooks so irresistible that TV series Wynonna Earp and Good Trouble both featured their tunes in hookup scenes.
Best track: Sad Girls Club

 

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Inwards & Onwards album cover

Half Moon Run

Inwards & Onwards

Genre: Indie folk rock
Sound: Simple acoustics back harmonious howls and layered percussion
If you like: Leif Vollebekk, Mt. Joy, Radiohead
Why you should listen: Each member of the JUNO-winning trio is known to play two to three instruments at a time, forming their beautifully humble backwoods sound.
Best track: Fxgiving

 

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With Pleasure album cover

Vissia

With Pleasure

Genre: Alt-pop
Sound: Crisp and clear belting vocals backed by dramatic deep snare booms and groovy bass lines
If you like: Maren Morris, Alessia Cara, Halsey
Why you should listen: Ranging from the heart-worn to the flirtatious, with hues of soul, country and blues, Edmonton artist VISSIA does it all with a burning fire inside.
Best track: Doorway

 

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Jazznight album cover

GOWE

Jazznight

Genre: Jazz-rap
Sound: A fusion of jazz and hip hop with deep lyrics
If you like: Kid Abstrakt, A Tribe Called Quest, Robert Glasper
Why you should listen: Although you’ll get hooked by the old-school beats with jazzy elements, Gowe’s Jazznight is a deep dive on Gowe’s life as an Asian-American artist from the come up to America’s racial problems.
Best track: Hourglass

 

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Delta Kream album cover

The Black Keys

Delta Kream

Genre: Rock
Sound: Bluesy, old-fashioned road-trip rock
If you like: The White Stripes, Franz Ferdinand, The Cold War Kids
Why you should listen: Wailing guitar riffs, along with soulful singin’ from lead singer Dan Auerbach, make this an album to jam to.
Best track: Crawling Kingsnake

 

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Super What? album cover

Czarface & MF Doom

Super What?

Genre: Hip hop
Sound: Old-school hip hop with references ranging from comic-book heroes and villains to historical figures
If you like: Madvillain, Aesop Rock, Gang Starr
Why you should listen: Iconic and mysterious rapper MF Doom passed in October 2020 and left a huge impact in hip hop. In this collaboration with Czarface, fans will love the music MF Doom imprinted onto the scene with wordplay, unique samples and comic-book references.
Best track: Break in the Action

 

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Sweet Fever album cover

Ferraro

Sweet Fever

Genre: Pop rock
Sound: Hooky, fresh and fun
If you like: Arkells, Harry Styles, Matthew Sweet
Why you should listen: With more hooks than a tackle box and packed with powerful choruses and sibling harmonies, the three adorable Ferraro brothers—Cosmo, Gianni and Tally—crank out winning pop that makes for a perfect summer soundtrack.
Best track: Lonely

 

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Separate Places EP album cover

Dizzy

Seperate Places EP

Genre: Indie pop
Sound: Dreamy orchestrals, fuzzy guitars and beautiful vocal harmonies
If you like: Maggie Rogers, Soccer Mommy, Overcoats
Why you should listen: Dizzy reworks their The Sun and Her Scorch album with some of their favourite musicians to make a delightful collection of artistic collaborations. They delicately strip back certain tracks and toughen up others.
Best track: The Bird Behind the Drapes (ft. Luna Li)

 

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Blue Weekend album cover

Wolf Alice

Blue Weekend

Genre: Indie rock
Sound: Distorted, wailing guitars and hypnotic vocals that ride a rollercoaster of emotions
If you like: Courtney Barnett, Snail Mail, Foals
Why you should listen: Partially written in a converted church, Wolf Alice have pushed themselves to get lyrically vulnerable and sonically bolder than ever.
Best track: Smile

 

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Sour album cover

Olivia Rodrigo

SOUR

Genre: Pop
Sound: Angry, angsty heartbreak anthems for the TikTok generation
If you like: Lorde, St Vincent, Taylor Swift
Why you should listen: With sophisticated lyricism and a variety of 90s grunge and riot-grrl influences, Rodrigo’s debut sets her far apart from the rest of the Disney star oeuvre.
Best track: Brutal

 

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off saint dominique album cover

Renforshort

off saint dominiue

Genre: Indie
Sound: Diverse influences, grunge-y guitar riffs, and raw, authentic teen-angst lyrics
If you like: Olivia O’Brien, Billie Eilish, bülow
Why you should listen: Renforshort draws clear inspiration from the pop-punk and grunge stars of the early 2000s, but adds an addictively catchy Gen Z twist.
Best track: virtual reality

 

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