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Ahh, the dog days of summer are here. It’s been far too hot and humid, while my fan has been fighting a losing battle, barely recirculating the stuffy air about my apartment. Any relief at all will do – say ice cubes, vodka and great new music? I thought as much! Enjoy.

Mew - No More Stories

No More Stories/Are Told Today/I’m Sorry/They Washed Away//No More Stories/The World Is Grey/I’m Tired/Let’s Wash Away

Mew

Released: August 17, 2009 (Den)

Oh the hipsters must be delighted. What makes a good album? How about Scandinavian indie-prog rock? That’ll do it. At the very least, Danish band Mew refer to themselves humourously as “pretentious art rock”. While that might be a derisive term to throw at some lesser lights, it isn’t the case for Mew, and No More Stories… (despite its flippantly art rock-esque long title) is accessible, listenable, and most importantly, gets better each time. I don’t say this lightly, but this is certainly one of the best albums of 2009 to date.

For a taste, check out this audio for “Beach“ on YouTube (before it disappears)


It is green outside
Where it seems magical
And if nothing works
We’ll do nothing
I hope we’re on time

And we shouldn’t look at the sky
The perilous light
We were not allowed outside
And no one could tell us why

– Beach

9/10

arctic-monkeys-humbug

Humbug

Arctic Monkeys

Released: August 24, 2009 (UK)

One of my fave bands, full disclosure. That being said, if you are expecting the immature antics/raw enthusiasm of earlier albums, you will be disappointed. While some of the familiar catchy hooks are present on Humbug, you’ll also notice a darker, more cynical (if the Monkeys could ever be described as idealistic prior) tone – hence the fitting title. Humbug comes out as the natural progression from Favourite Worst Nightmare and Alex Turner’s side project The Last Shadow Puppets – darker, more melodic, and darn good in the end.

For a taste, check out this bitchin’ video for “Crying Lightning

She swam out of tonight’s phantasm
Grabbed my hand and made it very clear
There’s absolutely nothing for us here
It’s a magnolia celebration to be attempted on a Wednesday night
It’s better than to get a reputation as a miserable little tyke
At least that’s the conclusion she came to in this overture

– Secret Door

8/10

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