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It’s no secret that summer is a great time for music – all of the coolest artists release new albums, singles and EPs every year from May through September. And 2021 album releases are no exception However, some absolute masterpieces are bound to be overlooked within this tidal wave of new album releases. We’re here to recommend a few albums from this summer that deserve some proper love. So be sure to add these 2021 album releases to your playlist to keep rocking out for the rest of the year.
“Going Mainstream” – Coast Modern
Coast Modern is sitting nice and pretty at the top of the indie-pop food chain at the moment, and for good reason. Prior to “Going Mainstream,” they hadn’t released an album since 2017, and even embraced jokes about their lack of music production. On “Going Mainstream,” they continue accepting their bad rep, the second track titled “The Song You’ve Been Waiting For.” The album itself was truly worth waiting for, to say the least. With Coast Modern’s signature laid-back, surfer vibes mixed with just enough genre experimentalism to reinvigorate their brand, “Going Mainstream” is both familiar and brand-new.
Stand out track: “Hula Hoopin”
“A Touch of the Beat Gets You Up on Your Feet Gets You Out and Then Into the Sun” – Aly & AJ
Your favorite pop duo is back and ready to shed their Disney image. Getting back into the with an explicit version of their decade-old momentous song, “The Potential Breakup Song,” in 2020, Aly & AJ are truly making a comeback with this 2021 album release. With a more mature sound, but still certainly falling within the pop genre, our favorite sisters pulled it off with this one. “A Touch of the Beat …” definitely isn’t the riskiest album to put into the world, but these tunes are still impossible to dislike. Compared to their previous releases, there’s something intangibly mature about this new collection. Add it to your Spotify queue for the perfect driving music!
Standout track: “Listen!!!”
“CALL ME IF YOU GET LOST” – Tyler, The Creator
It feels like this 2021 album was forgotten shortly after its release this past June, although it’s Tyler’s most ambitious album yet; it’s almost anthological in how organized and determined it is. With features such as Lil Uzi Vert, Pharrell Williams and even Lil Wayne, this album’s production is top notch. With slightly less nervous energy than some of Tyler’s previous work, “CALL ME IF YOU GET LOST” is another example of clear musical growth. Let it not be said that Tyler hasn’t kept his edge, though, as his hunger for something is almost palpable in the air that his music passes through.
Standout track: “RISE (ft. DAISY WORLD)”
“Sling” – Clairo
Indie-folk darling Clairo released her sophomore studio album in July. Master of clean, organic harmonies, Clairo’s latest is giving campfire music vibes – in a good way. There’s something old-fashioned about the simplicity of the songs that make up “Sling,” the dulcet tones of Clairo’s voice shining through, accompanied by an acoustic guitar and elemental drum beats.
Standout track: “Zinnias”
“lite Cool” – DPR Live
OK, so this one is an EP, but it still makes it on this list of 2021 album releases because it’s just that good. As the title suggests, this EP sure is cool. Make sure to give this a listen before summer ends, because this is definitely backyard barbecue, poolside, beach music. “lite Cool” has a timeless feel that summertime music captures, seemingly without effort. An artist from South Korea, DPR’s music also features a combination of lyrics in both English and Korean, which is super engaging to all kinds of audiences.
Standout track: “Summer Tights”
“Troubled Paradise” – Slayyyter
As hyper-pop takes center stage on the radio (where it belongs), Slayyyter is truly winning the game. With her risqué lyrics and sugar-sweet voice, Slayyyter has earned her place as hyper-pop royalty. Even her album covers look like Lisa Frank threw up on them. The art for “Troubled Paradise” is a clear riff on “The Wizard of Oz,” and it works. Channeling early-2000s Britney Spears with something uniquely 2021 bleeding through, “Troubled Paradise” is as fun as it is slightly sinister.
Standout track: “Serial Killer”
“if i could make it go quiet” – girl in red
Do you listen to girl in red? The iconic Norwegian indie pop artist who has become a representative of the wlw community released her debut studio album this past April 30. The album’s most popular single “Serotonin,” is reminiscent of mid-2000s emo/pop punk – think early Paramore. “if i could make it go quiet” also features some nightmare-inducing album artwork, its surrealism truly compelling. As girl in red continues to establish herself on the alternative music scene, she’s already been able to prove herself as multifaceted through this collection alone.
Stand out track: “midnight love”
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