Top 5 Indie Rock Albums For Summer 2016

Hello everyone. Summer is the time for vacations, or school break, or even new albums and artist. Check out my list of top 5 indie rock albums you should be listening to. From the indie folk song writers to the experimental art rock bands, this list is has it all. Also you can click on any album name to see a more in-depth album review from us. Every album on this list also has a more in depth review here on EXP Grind.

5. “Light Upon the Lake” Whitney

Album Review Light Upon The Lake WhitneyThis album is just plain something to relax to. Use of trumpets and other instruments compliment the band sense of style and originality. The vocals are so distant and unique, its hard to not remember this voice. I love how to vocals so different don’t drown out the subtle sounds of keyboards and other exotic instruments. The tracks “No Woman” is my favorite track of the album. It has such a great chill vibe to it.  I like the way the guitar harmonizes with the trumpets and the percussion elements of the track. Not to mention the vocals tie in a great blues-like sensation.

Another track that is really good is “Golden Days”. The song has a higher ‘upbeat’ tempo to the rest of the songs. It’s easy to appreciate the way the instruments talk to each other in this track.  The band shows great vocal use in tracks like “Polly” another great track on this album. The last track on the album “Follow” is also a great track and deserves a mention. I like the way the guitar sounds when the chorus kicks in. This track is a great ending to the album.

4. “Cardinal” Pinegrove

Pinegrove Cardinal AlbumThis album shows how the band has not only great sense of honest deep lyrics, but the talent to tell relateable stories and capture the hearts of people perhaps going through the same issues right now.  Songs like ‘Old Friends’ show how realistic and balanced this band is. Songs like ‘Size of the Moon’ seem to be talking about the crazy ideas we come up with when we feel comfortable around our friends. Although some of those ideas never make it out of the room. I like that they touch on such small details of friendship. Something I haven’t heard in a band in a long time.  The whole album experience feels like a normal group of friends talking about normal situations, and Im there seeing everything go down.

Like I stated before, this album shows how the band has not only great sense of honest deep lyrics, but the talent to tell relateable stories and capture the hearts of people perhaps going through the same issues right now.  Songs like ‘Old Friends’ show how realistic and balanced this band is. Songs like ‘Size of the Moon’ seem to be talking about the crazy ideas we come up with when we feel comfortable around our friends. Although some of those ideas never make it out of the room. I like that they touch on such small details of friendship. Something I haven’t heard in a band in a long time.  The whole album experience feels like a normal group of friends talking about normal situations, and Im there seeing everything go down.

3. “The Goodness” Hotelier

Hotelier Goodness albumThe album is very consistently mellow and vibrant with great guitar and bass melodies. From great vocals to the raw drum beats. Long drum pauses between tracks shape a harmonic album experience. Lyrics are creatively drawn from life experiences, giving the album a more sympathetic engagement to listeners, and giving more to returning audience. The album starts with a great poetic epilogue about human life. A great start that a lot of other bands could learn from.

Listening to this album was a slow ride of radical emotions. The same consistent sometimes overwhelming sad and lonely emotion was conveyed throughout the album, from start to finish.

2. “A Moon Shaped Pool” Radiohead

radioheadburnWhen I listen to the new album “A Moon Shaped Pool” by Radiohead , I’m feel a deep appreciation for the ‘art rock’ genre. Tracks like “Daydreaming” start very low and flat, then slowing increase the volume of synth or strings to keep the same consistent melody. Majority of the songs start pretty low and sunken then slowly increase towards the end. I actually like that with the whole experimental art rock thing going on here. I’m still new to many different approached to art rock. Radiohead’s new album shows me a different world of guitars and bass instrumental sounds.

Radiohead’s vocal lyrics seem very monotone and deep-seated. But I think they show how a band can create resembling instrumental sounds to put you in an emotional journey. The tracks always seem to put me in a sad mood, which is what I think was intended. Then the drums come in, and tempo is raised a little bit. Still keeping that depressing high felling going. I like that this album can jump through different sounds like electronic, rock, and even classical. Tracks like “Glass Eye” show how diverse they can be with different sounds from different genres.

Deep lyrics are engaging to people on so many different emotional levels. The album talks about being mankind, and things we can create. I love this approach, because it’s told in such a sorrowful way, it’s hard to not see the contradiction. The album remains true and trustworthy though the whole experience. I never thought the album was going to take a dramatic turn into something more ‘pop-sounding’ or completely different.

1. “Singing Saw” Kevin Morby

kevin-morbyMe saying this album is good is a huge understatement. The lyrics in in this album are deep and descriptive. From telling stories about fishing, to women crying, tracks like “Dorothy” show that his poetry is spoken with huge weight full emphasis. Kevin Morby’s work in this album is very rooted in classical instruments like pianos and violins to give sounds that blend so perfectly with his great lyrics. The trumpets were sure a great highlight of the track “I have been to the mountain”, I wish I could have heard it more.

First half of album is instrumentally creative. The slow playing guitar and the mellow drums beats in certain tracks make me feel relaxed and give every word he’s saying more impact.

Hey guys, how did you like the list? Have a question, comment, or concern for me the author? Let me know in the comment below. Don’t forget to also check out more music reviews on The EXP Grind.

Written by: Christian Galvez

Christian is the founder of The EXP Grind. He is interested in Movies, Music, Video Games, Anime, and just about anything in Arts and Entertainment. He tries to find art with true meaning and hopes to reach more creative professionals.

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