The 30 most-anticipated albums of September

Okay, so we don’t know for sure that Donald Glover’s fourth (and reportedly final) album as Childish Gambino will arrive this month, but the prospect looms large as we turn the corner into fall. What we do know is we’re getting big new albums from Chicago MC Noname, French synth-pop phenom Christine And The Queens,…

The A.V. Club’s 20 best albums of 2017

There was too much to listen to in 2017—not just albums, of which there were once again thousands, a barrage of releases from major-label veterans and SoundCloud up-and-comers alike, all vying for your attention. There was just too much of everything: a persistent, buzzing storm of push notifications and free-floating…

Watch Pile channel Radiohead with this cover of an OK Computer classic

Radiohead’s third studio album OK Computer turned 20 earlier this year. A critical and commercial success, the album is filled with unpredictable, magnificent tracks, and helped define the band’s direction for over a decade. Filling those shoes on the 20th anniversary of the album is indie rock band Pile, who pull off…

The best albums of 2017 so far

Even at just over six months old, 2017 has already given us more than enough good music to fill playlists from here until December—enough that it would be fine, really, if everyone just took a knee until next year. It’s also been an unusually busy year for comebacks: High-profile returns from the ’00s indie-rock class…

What are you listening to this week?

John Darnielle is nothing if not deliberate with his words, so you could be sure that when The Mountain Goats announced an album titled Goths, goths were what you’d be getting. The song titles certainly deliver on that front, with references to Sisters Of Mercy, wearing black, and—more esoterically—Portuguese goth…

What to play, watch, listen to, and read this weekend

“Everything doesn’t play nice with our expectations for games—namely, that they challenge us or tell us a traditional story. It’s almost a procedural essay, using a series of monologues from the Buddhist philosopher Alan Watts to explore the nature of existence. You’re not transferring from object to object as if they…

Freddie Gibbs, Mastodon, Pile, and more in this week’s music reviews

No two Pile albums are alike, and that’s what makes hitting play on a new one so exciting. Those first few notes open a door to a new world, one that could only be created by frontman Rick Maguire. With Pile, Maguire is fearless, willing to take country and bluegrass riffs and twist them around noisy post-hardcore and…

Gnarwhal announces its third album Crucial, streams “Marathon Ripper”

Two-piece rock bands are often viewed as a curiosity, due in large part to their inherent limitations. The exclusion of a guitar or bass means that, by and large, there’s something being omitted. But increasingly, that’s proving to be an outdated construct, as bands like Nashville’s Gnarwhal are continually pushing…

Here’s what’s coming to record stores and streaming services in March

Every Friday, dozens of new records are released into the wild. Some make big splashes, and others sink almost immediately. For most music consumers, it’s almost too much information, and save for those precious few who spend their hours glued to review sites and release calendars, it’s hard to know what’s coming out…

“Thirteen” going on “30 Something”: Growing up according to pop music

Next to sex and death, there’s no more compelling subject for songwriters than the thing that happens in between those two endpoints on the cycle of life. Aging—and all the excitement, confusion, and existential dread that accompanies it—has long captivated the songwriter, whose work within a ruthlessly youth-focused…

Pile announces tour in support of its new album, A Hairshirt Of Purpose

Last week Boston’s Pile announced its fifth album, A Hairshirt Of Purpose, a record that The A.V. Club has already declared one of our most anticipated records of the year. The band has since released “Texas,” the first track from Hairshirt that sees Rick Maguire and company offering up a knotty, off-kilter update to…

From St. Vincent’s latest to Drake’s playlist: Our most anticipated albums of 2017

While it’d be nice if music releases fit nicely into a year-by-year narrative, the end of 2016 proved that wasn’t the case. Even after we published our feature highlighting some of the best music of 2016, there was still more to be released for the year. In those last couple weeks before 2017 was rung in, we saw new…