The House, Aaron Maine's third album as Porches, is an incessantly earnest portrayal of love and regret, decay and change. It is never not self-serious as Maine's lilting voice takes a diaristic approach, singing personal songs full of longing and desire over computerised keys and synths.
At Weddings shows Tomberlin tapping into a tentative inner strength, creating a soothing record that ends up resisting its self-doubts and reaches out its hand.
In a Poem Unlimited lives up to its aim and its name. It’s a reflection of abuse that feels all-encompassing, and of this era. It’s a timeless gem of an album that is about as powerful as pop music can be.
With a hint of Nanci Griffith and Conor Oberst, Amanda Shires is on fine form sounding nothing short of Presidential on To the Sunset.
Double Negative is a magnificent and courageous record, if you’re ready for it.
Swearin' reunite after a short time away with their best album to date. But this time they approach their usual razor-sharp riffs and pop-punk melodies with a new sense of confidence and maturity
Superorganism's self-titled debut album recalls the energy and fun of early-mid 00s electro indie pop but ultimately lacks in substance.
This has been billed as his most reflective album, a chance to make connections across his musical career but there’s a quiet confidence too, delivering some of his most intricate arrangements and roaming far beyond the Americana tag that he was often filed under.
On Lush, Snail Mail maestro Lindsey Jordan always has something important to say, and it’s worth listening to. Lush is a debut burst forth in full technicolour.
Mostly ... Con Todo el Mundo is a celebration of what shared creativity and influence can bring – something the world needs a bit more of these days.
Altogether, Working Class Woman is an incredibly cohesive art-house album with a perfect combination of electronic music and spoken word, and if it doesn’t punch through the roof of clubs everywhere at least Davidson will be sorted as a kick-ass life coach.
She’s always been a powerful performer, but she’s nailed the careful art of crafting an album with Lavender; its stories, themes and tunes echo each other powerfully.
Boasting memorable songs front to back, Sunday Best is a confident debut chock-full of understated pleasures, one that hints Martha Ffion will only get better as her career progresses.
Bark Your Head Off, Dog is another great Hop Along album, intimate and grand in a way only few can do.
There’s rarely time these days to sit down and really listen to an album beginning to end, but that’s what Jon Hopkins wants you to do with Singularity, and if you can afford the just-over-an-hour-long runtime then you’ll get so much more out of this record than you thought possible.
A sparkling pop album that flourishes in both English and French, Chris is a supremely confident introduction to the next phase of Christine and the Queens.
NAO assuredly ascends into the stratosphere with sophomore album Saturn, an open diary that leaves you both rooting for and absorbed in the afflictions of the angelic singer.
Confidence Man are a band who know exactly what they want; with a fucking excellent sense of humour to boot, they shouldn't be taken too seriously. Confident Music for Confident People is littered with unexpected flourishes, comical call-and-responses and an overriding element of fun. It's surely the party of the year.
The Louder I Call, the Faster It Runs revels in keeping you off balance; it impresses, inspires and occasionally overwhelms, but it never outstays its welcome. A fantastic statement from an endlessly evolving band shouting louder than ever.
Dream Wife is brimming with grungey, glam melters and dreamy pop melodies that perfectly capture the enthusiasm and confidence of Dream Wife's live shows, without sounding too over-polished.
While the fruits of their reinvention aren't always compelling here, 7 is still a solid first step heralding Beach House's next phase.
On her second album, Scottish pianist and singer Kathryn Joseph continues to excel at both the light and the dark without ever being grey, and it's the constant exchange between pain and beauty that makes this album is a roaring success.
While Joy as an Act of Resistance might not flow perfectly as an album, many of its songs when taken on their own raise some serious hell.
If Bury Me at Makeout Creek marked Mitski’s “breakthrough” and seismic shift from piano to punk rage on guitar, and Puberty 2 grappled with finding happiness in the reality of adulthood, Be the Cowboy is a new frontier.
In its 13 tracks and just shy of 40 minutes, Wide Awake! shows perhaps the band's broadest emotional range to date with a healthy dollop of anger on display. There is rather a lot to be angry about right now, but Parquet Courts remind us to, at least, dance and have a good time, despite the impending apocalypse.
Cocoa Sugar slaps sugary boy band choruses against tongue-twister rap, via surreal imagery borrowed from the Bible and a sprinkling of the kind of idioms your nan might use. It’s a potent mix, and their best album yet.