30-Second Album Reviews: September 2021

New music from Rozzi, Willow, Barney Artist and Mr. Jukes, James Blake, LANY, Amyl and the Sniffers, Pink Siifu, Halsey, Julien Baker, The Vaccines, and many more.

Rozzi's Hymn For Tomorrow album cover.

Rozzi

Hymn For Tomorrow

Genre: Soul/Pop
Sound: Mixing bangers with ballads, a versatile array of genres, anchored by a strong voice with a rich tone.
If you like: Adele, Yebba, Tori Kelly
Why you should listen: Honest and vulnerable, Rozzi earnestly captures her heartbreak and new beginnings. While she sings of hope for a better tomorrow, the songstress, discovered by Maroon 5’s Adam Levine, showcases her range vocally and musically.
Best track: Mad Man

 

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Tinashe's 333 album cover.

Tinashe

333

Genre: Alt-R&B
Sound: A sonic landscape ranging from low-key R&B melodies to upbeat pop bangers
If you like: The Internet, Chloe x Halle, SZA
Why you should listen: Even on her fifth album, Tinashe keeps her sound fresh — with seamless transitions and understated vocals that still hold their ground. The multitalented performer solidly builds on her previous work while still infusing her music with new sounds.
Best track: Small Reminders

 

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Willow's lately I feel EVERYTHING album cover.

Willow

lately I feel EVERYTHING

Genre: Pop-punk
Sound: Intertwines R&B melodies with punk bass tempos.
If you like: Avril Lavigne, FKW Twigs, All Time Low
Why should listen: The pop-punk genre-bending queen is back with another introspective, multifaceted project. Courageously giving us an insider look at her relationships, the authentic creative shares her growing pains and insights with punk/rock stars Avril Lavigne and Travis Barker, to name a few.
Best track: Transparent Soul (ft. Travis Barker)

 

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Anne-Marie's Therapy album cover.

Anne-Marie

Therapy

Genre: Dance-pop
Sound: Classic, buoyant pop with danceable beats and catchy choruses made to be screamed with friends
If you like: Little Mix, Zara Larsson, Rita Ora
Why you should listen: U.K. pop powerhouse Anne-Marie, known for hits: Friends, Rockabye and 2002, follows her dazzling debut with the perfect soundtrack for a carefree summer.
Best track: x2

 

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Barney Artist and Mr. Jukes' The Locket album cover

Barney Artist and Mr. Jukes

The Locket

Genre: Hip hop
Sound: Old-school hip hop with a hint of soul-jazz
If you like: Tom Misch, Loyle Carner, Phife Dawg
Why you should listen: East London rapper Barney Artist joins singer-songwriter-producer Mr. Jukes and uses old-school vibes and sick, buttery bars to preach being your authentic self.
Best track: Blowin’ Steam (Open Up Your Mind)

 

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James Blake Friends That Break Your Heart album cover.

James Blake

Friends That Break Your Heart

Genre: Electronic
Sound: Experimental production involving strings, hip-hop beats and electronic onomatopoeia melts into Blake’s hushed, sultry voice.
If you like: Billie Eilish, Perfume Genius, Frank Ocean
Why you should listen: With a soft-spoken sensitivity and a poetic pen, Blake muses on love and friendship while marrying his classical savoir-faire with electronic experimentation.
Best track: Coming Back (ft. SZA)

 

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James Vincent McMorrow Grapefruit Season album cover

James Vincent McMorrow

Grapefruit Season

Genre: Chill pop
Sound: Sinuous acoustic riffs tango with electronica that puts a spring in your step while hitting smack dab in the feels.
If you like: Bon Iver, Chet Faker, Cautious Clay
Why you should listen: McMorrow’s spellbinding falsetto tastefully ties together eclectic influences from dancehall to R&B in this Kenny Beats-coproduced record.
Best track: Hollywood & Vine

 

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LANY's gg bb xx album cover.

LANY

gg bb xx

Genre: Alt-pop
Sound: Soft and dreamy lead vocals, airy acoustic strums and subtle electronic beats inspired by ’80s love songs
If you like: LAUV, HONNE, Troye Sivan
Why you should listen: Metabolize heartbreak with this glittering synth-infused collection that encapsulates the cool, glossy sounds of L.A. pop.
Best track: Get Away

 

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Laura Mvula Pink Noise album cover.

Laura Mvula

Pink Noise

Genre: Pop/neo funk/disco
Sound: Disco pop with groovy echoes of funk and neo soul.
If you like: Janelle Monae, Emily King, Jessie Ware
Why should listen: After a four-year album hiatus, the talented British neo-soul singer is back with some retro-inspired tunes that will make you want to pull out your roller skates.
Best track: Got Me

 

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Amyl and the Sniffers Comfort to Me album cover.

Amyl and the Sniffers

Comfort to Me

Genre: Punk
Sound: ’70s-style headbangers with squealing guitars and heart-stopping drums
If you like: The Runaways, Destroy Boys, Bikini Kill
Why you should listen: With screaming authenticity and irresistible energy, Amyl and the Sniffers are genuinely creating some of the best punk music being released today. When it comes to angry, classic punk, it doesn’t get better than this.
Best track: Security

 

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Pink Siifu's GUMBO’! album cover.

Pink Siifu

GUMBO’!

Genre: Hip hop
Sound: Southern hip hop featuring staccato verses and instrumental interludes
If you like: Quelle Chris, Homeboy Sandman, OutKast
Why you should listen: Alabama-based rapper Pink Siifu drops his slice-of-life stories of growing up in the South while blending hip hop and jazz to create tracks that are sometimes hypnotic, sometimes edgy.
Best track: Scurrrrd (feat. Big Rube, Nick Hakim, Asal Hazel, Georgia Anne Muldrow, DJ Harrison, Iiye)

 

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Halsey's If I Can’t Have Love, I Want Power album cover.

Halsey

If I Can’t Have Love, I Want Power

Genre: Alt-pop
Sound: Wildly diverse influences from fuzzed-out guitar riffs to head-banging techno
If you like: Twenty One Pilots, Grimes, Paramore
Why you should listen: Halsey is undefinable. She deftly switches from track to track; from distorted electronica to ’90s shoegaze to stripped-back folk acoustics to spoken word beats that sound straight out of early Twenty One Pilots. One of the year’s most interesting popular records.
Best track: You Asked For This

 

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Beatchild's Unselfish Desires album cover.

Beatchild

Unselfish Desires

Genre: Neo-soul/R&B/Electronic
Sound: A fusion of funk, soul, electronic, and jazz straight from the ’80s.
If you like: K-os, Saukrates, Chromeo
Why you should listen: A groove-tastic mellow musical ride from Toronto’s Beatchild. He smoothly fuses different musical genres for a guaranteed toe-tapping, hip-grinding record that puts an upbeat and expansive musical ribbon on the end of summer 2021.
Best track: Dance For Love

 

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My Name Is Suzie Ungerleider album cover

Suzie Ungerleider

My Name Is Suzie Ungerleider

Genre: Roots
Sound: Tender tales beautifully told
If you like: Kathleen Edwards, Sarah Harmer, Phoebe Bridgers
Why you should listen: She may have dropped her Oh Susanna stage name, no longer comfortable with the reference, but her great vocals and insightful songwriting remain unchanged. Beautifully sung, rich narratives are at the core of her Americana sound.
Best track: Mount Royal

 

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Nessa Barret's Pretty Poison album cover.

Nessa Barrett

Pretty Poison

Genre: Alt-pop
Sound: TikTok-ready bangers with an edgy, new-wave emo twist
If you like: Melanie Martinez, renforshort, LILHUDDY
Why you should listen: Music releases from viral TikTok stars typically don’t have the greatest reputation, but Barrett’s fledgling music career looks promising: with vulnerable, angst-ridden songs about mental illness and teenage love (and some promising collaborations), she just might be a step above the rest.
Best track: i hope ur miserable until ur dead

 

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Orla Gartland's Woman on the Internet album cover

Orla Gartland

Woman on the Internet

Genre: Indie Pop
Sound: Bouncy, cerebral pop builds a soundtrack to overthink to
If You Like: Ani DiFranco, Lorde, Tessa Violet
Why you should listen: Features best parts of twee indie and electro-pop with charm and skill to build a sound that’s like an anxious, pacing version of Taylor Swift’s 1989. Strong debut from an artist sure to make waves. With almost a million Spotify listeners days after release, people are already taking notice
Best Track: You’re Not Special, Babe

 

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Julien Baker's Little Oblivions Remixes album cover

Julien Baker

Little Oblivions Remixes

Genre: Indie Rock/Electronic
Sound: Raw, angelic vocals remixed into fuzzed-out, bass-bumping electronic tracks
If You Like: Phoebe Bridgers, Big Thief, Soccer Mommy
Why you should listen: If Baker’s Little Oblivions album was a sonic revolution for the former stripped-back acoustic songwriter, her Remixes album is on a whole other planet. Baker is unrecognizable on these tracks, but these electronica transformations retain every bit as much emotion and power as the originals.
Best Track: Ringside

 

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The Vaccines Back In Love City album cover.

The Vaccines

Back In Love City

Genre: Indie pop rock
Sound: Fuzzy guitar riffs, bubbly keys and catchy hooks made for jumping while yelling along to witty lyrics.
If you like: The Last Shadow Puppets, Blossoms, The Flaming Lips
Why you should listen: Resplendent with decadent lines about American indulgence, this intellectual brand of glistening synth rock is a booster shot of good-mood medicine.
Best track: Headphones Baby

 

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Yola's Stand For Myself album cover

Yola

Stand For Myself

Genre: Classic pop/soul
Sound: Swinging ’80s-inspired pop with soulful vocal runs.
If you like: Margo Price, Tina Turner, Patti LaBelle
Why should listen: Swaying back to ’80s pop and disco, Yola bears her heart with edgy, alto gospel vocals. The British artist takes you to church with powerful lyrics and soulful, edgy singing that will have you drifting in the music.
Best track: Barely Alive

 

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