Unknown Mortal Orchestra – Sex & Food

Like Pink Floyd and Daft Punk adopted a kid

Buffalo Clover – Low Down Time

An amalgamation of soulful sounds à la 1960s Stax Records and country music styles born and bred in the East Tennessee hills. 

Ghost – Prequelle

This record sounds like ABBA got way into Salman Rushdie, tattooed pentagrams on their arms, and decided to write an album praising the beast with many names. 

Blink-182 – Dude Ranch

It is tongue-in-cheek angsty music for teenagers driving around in their mom’s Toyota Corolla

Starbenders – Julian

This record sounds like The Runaways asked Duran Duran, Heart, and the Eurythmics to help them make an album produced by Cyndi Lauper.

Lukas Nelson & Promise Of The Real

If you are a fan of country music at all do yourself a favor and pick up this album. It is a great bridge to the origins of the modern outlaw/alternative country moment.

Jason James

Jason James is the Stars & Stripes cola of country music

Angaleena Presley – Wrangled

Wrangled is pure two-stepping, Nudie suit wearing country music…with short flashes of punk rock attitude and feminist badassery.

R.E.M. – Lifes Rich Pageant

Lifes Rich Pageant is an incredibly 80s sounding record and an incredibly timeless sounding record simultaneously.

The Rolling Stones – Emotional Rescue

This is a solid blues-based rock n roll album that has flares of funky disco, big band rock with horns and pianos, punk rock lite, and stripped down coffee house music.

Darkness Falls

This record is generic-sounding, female-led, modern alternative that belongs on the soundtrack of a Wes Anderson movie……so long as you place the song titles symmetrically on the back cover.

Judy Garland – A Star Is Born

This record is an excellent example of Judy Garland’s superhuman skills.  She sings with a soft power and draws you in with the wisp in her voice before she blows you away.  

Ryan Adams – 29

Portions of 29 also give me the vibe that I am in some professional office and waiting patiently in a chair while a secretary types away and an intern is filing papers.

Shoji Tabuchi

Shoji is simply amazing.  His fiddling prowess is akin to Bob Wills and Charlie Daniels.

The White Stripes – The Red Demos

If you are interested to hear part of the creative process that went into making the Grammy award-winning swan song of one of the most influential bands of the past 30 years, then you should seek this record out.

Nikki Lane – Highway Queen

She sounds like she stepped out of the hills of East Tennessee in the late 60s.  There is a seductive smoothness to her raspy, breathy voice.

Goat – Requiem

What it sounds like to me is the soundtrack that should be playing in the gift shop after you get off of the Disney Jungle Cruise or maybe it is the music you hear in the waiting room of the spa that is in the hotel where you stay during your down time while on safari in Africa.  

Mastodon – Emperor Of Sand

This record sounds like what Black Sabbath could have evolved into if Ozzy had stayed clean and the 80s never happened.

Osmosis Jones

This album could easily be disc 7 of Time Life’s 14 disc set of early 2000s Top 40.

Howlin’ Wolf

Howlin’ Wolf’s vocal work has that I-have-seen-some-shit-that-you-would-not-believe-type of feel to it.  He is the kind of guy that you do not want to mess with, but want to hang around so you can hear his stories.

Willie Nelson and Leon Russell – One For The Road

My knowledge of Leon Russell is very limited: I know that he is greatly respected in the music world; I know he has worked with some of the greatest musicians to walk the Earth; I know that my uncle tells a story about sleeping with his wife one time.

Neal Hefti – Hefti In Gotham City

Hefti in Gotham City sounds like you have been teleported back in time to New York City in the mid-1960s and have wandered into a big band jazz club filled with men in suits, cigarette smoke, expensive cocktails, and gorgeous women.

Run The Jewels 3

Killer Mike and El-P create a hip hop sound like no other.  Run The Jewels 3 is an album you can put on the turntable and jam.  

Cody Jinks – I’m Not The Devil

The cry of the pedal steel on I’m Not The Devil is sometimes heartbreaking; the fiddle solos somehow make you feel lonely; the lyrics can cause a sadness to well up inside that waters your eyes, but brings along with it a small grin.

Southern Family

I want to get drunk to this record.  I want to cry with this record.  I want to make love to this record.

Avenged Sevenfold – The Stage

The Stage sounds like Andrew Lloyd Webber dropped acid, went to a Rush concert, and decided to hire metal musicians to play the soundtrack to his drug-induced visions.