Every Friday, Attendee.com takes a look at some of the week’s best new albums from across the musical spectrum. Whether you need some tunes to unwind with after work or a hot track to play at a party … we’ve got you covered.

2 Chainz — Rap or Go to the League

2 Chainz

The Georgia rapper’s latest album since 2017, which by current hip-hop output standards might as well be an eon ago, is an ice cream shoppe. The flavor options, a multitude of features from Young Thug and Travis Scott to Ariana Grande and Ty Dolla $ign, are abundant and no particular track is richer than any other. 2 Chainz by no means can carry an album on his own at this stage in his career, but he doesn’t have to. With “Rap or Go to the League,” he’s just here to make fun hip-hop to listen to while you get ready for a night out.

Hand Habits — placeholder

 Hand habits

Before starting Hand Habits, guitarist Meg Duffy served as a session musician for vintage rock acts like The War on Drugs, Weyes Blood and William Tyler. In her second effort since her debut “Wildly Idle,” Duffy continues to paint intimate portraits of melancholy and existential confusion with her longing vocals and subtle guitar twinkles. Lauded as your “favorite indie bands favorite guitarist,” Duffy’s musicianship doesn’t jump out of the mix, but rather seeps into the pores like steam. On “placeholder,” she doesn’t rely on extravagant guitar sophistry because each individual notation is meant to be laid bare to the listener.

The Japanese House — Good at Falling

The Japanese House

The Japanese House joins Billie Eilish and The 1975 (whose drummer George Daniel helped produce “Good at Falling”) in the effort to decipher the alienation of late stage capitalism through the lens of pop music. However, unlike Eilish’s moody blues and The 1975’s hyper ballads, The Japanese House has much more personable insights. Relationships and love drift apart like islands being moved by tectonic plates, while synth waves and auto-tuned vocals wash over transparent lyricism. “We never f**k anymore, but we talk all the time so it’s fine” croons front woman Amber Bain, her debut record freed from the pleasantries of vague metaphor.

Helado Negro — This is How You Smile

 

Roberto Carlos Lange, the brainchild behind Helado Negro, began his career with experimental static explosions and reverb laced cries. On his newest record, This Is How You Smile,” Lange strips down his electronic pop fascinations to create a more Latin focus style of synth-folk. Bilingual whispers snake between quiet, lo-fi analogs and buttery acoustic chords. This is a certain amount of tropical aspirations within Lange’s production, but instead of a beach party, Lange finds himself on an empty coastline. This is not to say that This Is How You Smile,”  is a depressing record, but rather that its author finds comfort and contentment with the isolation he experiences.

Pond — “Tasmania”

 pond_tasmania

Pond was once considered a supplemental project for Tame Impala fans who had over-listened to “Lonerism.” But seven years and five records in, Pond has separated themselves from Australia’s rock n’ roll dynamos. “Tasmania” finds Pond moving away from their epileptic psych fits and into more sensual, sexy R&B and funk stylings. There’s still the shimmer and shake of thick bass lines and bubbly Moogs, but “Tasmania” isn’t satisfied by drug-fueled hook ups. This latest LP explores the journey that their music permitted, but akin to Odysseus after the Trojan war, they want to return home to Oz. They’ve traversed the deserts and braved the fiery cities to make it back home to their darlings.

Nots — “Half Painted House

 

The “Girl Power” rhetoric of contemporary rock and pop has one ahistorical caveat. The women of punk have been taking stand against chauvinism for decades now. Few current punk groups harken back to this history as much as Nots, the Memphis trio who recently announced their third LP after several years tinkering around and touring. Nots’s songs are drenched just as much in distortion as they are in the history of feminist rock. “Half Painted House” listens like a textual critique of post-punk’s masculine bend and feels like the sonic equivalent of a high-heel stepping on Ian Curtis’s crotch.

Anticipations

Tierra Whack — Gloria”

tierra-whach-gloria

Last year Tierra Whack assassinated hip-hop with her 15 track guerilla warfare record “Whack World.” Each song came in at exactly one minute. Flash forward to 2019, Whack has fulfilled the desires of her fans to hear her flesh out a sonic idea that lasts longer than a commercial. Since the new year, she has released a slew of singles and her most recent single, “Gloria” (clocking in at 2:36!), shows off her sing-song rap delivery and tasteful adlib stylings. Could this be a sampling of her follow-up to “Whack World”?