Sound Off: The Torch’s Picks of Favorite Albums So Far

Having trouble finding some new music? Thumbs sore from swiping through songs while on Spotify? The Torch’s staff’s got you. Here are our favorite albums from the past six months. Give them a listen and then let us know if our taste is music is a turn on or you’re going to turn us off.

“Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost: Part 1” by Foals
By Adnan Basic

I heard a Foals song for the first time in one of my old soccer video games, and ever since I’ve formed a connection with the group. The lads from England are back with their latest album which is similar to their earlier work but updated to fit in with the modern trends in music. I cannot wait for part two.

“Death Race For Love” by Juice WRLD
By Richard L. Figueroa

Juice WRLD’s second studio album puts the listener right in their feelings. Chicago’s very own emo-rap star explores heartbreaks and drugs in his newly released album. With the release of this album he proves his haters that he just isn’t a one hit wonder. The album, charted number one in Billboard’s Top 200 in March soon after its release date.

“A Brief Inquiry into Online Relationships” by The 1975
By Kristin McKee
I listen to this entire album at least twice every week, and I still have not gotten over it. The songs in this album either hype you up or make you daze into space and watch the world disappear around you. This is a common theme in The 1975’s albums. They always create a new way to express their story so that they stick to their roots but also take full advantage of the various paths they can go so that they can properly celebrate a new era.

“Narrated for You” by Alec Benjamin
By Ayumi Davis

I listen to his songs all the time. They’re classified under pop, but they give off more of an alternative vibe. It’s the kind of album I would listen to it on a rainy day, or on a walk through the city by myself. The songs are a bit laidback and slow tempoed. Benjamin’s wordplay is really fresh. His voice is soft and quiet, but steady, emphasizing his emotions in his singing, leaving you closing your eyes and bopping your head.

“While We Wait” by Kehlani
By Andrea Lee

Ever since her second mixtape, I have been deeply in love with Kehlani’s sound, style and especially, her voice. Ever since “While We Wait” has come out, it has been in heavy rotation for me. Her style is the perfect mix of 90s R&B with new age pop which is apparent in this album. As her last project before her daughter was born, Kehlani definitely went out on a high note and left her fans wanting more. “Nunya” featuring Dom Kennedy was for sure the stand out song. It’s the perfect song to dance to with your friends or even alone after a break up. This album truly shows the growth of Kehlani as an artist. This album is truly the perfect listen.

“Human” by dodie
By Jordan Geriane

Dodie’s music genuinely makes me so happy. I adore her soft and delicate voice, and the fact that she generally accompanies herself with a ukulele. Her bright personality shines in her debut album as she gives us a gorgeous look into a diary that is her life. She sings meaningful and original lyrics she has written all on her own. She shows listeners how she is human in her own special way.

“Thank U, Next” by Ariana Grande.
By Darlene Leal

“Thank U, Next” is filled songs with about self-care, positivity and growth for Ariana.  Although, it can be seen as a “generic top-40’s” album, I can’t help but blast the album. It gets me energized and in a good mood. I personally don’t think every single song on the album has to have some deeper meaning behind it, and this album demonstrates that with songs such as “7 rings.” But undeniably, every song is catchy and polished.

“Wasteland, Baby!” by Hozier
By Jules Banks
Dropped on March 1, Hozier takes us, once again, on a journey through love, sex, and rustic guitar with his newest album. The dark folk aura of this album draw listeners in, and the poetic writing of each and every song keeps them attentive and in awe. Starring hits such as “Nina Cried Power” and “NFWMB,” this album certainly lives up the anticipation it created worldwide. Make sure to have your rhythm ready – Hozier included an interactive song for the audience to engage in this time (Almost) so we don’t have to feel inadequate in the face of the talent this album shows off.

“Locals Only” by Tiny Meat Gang
By Evi Arthur
As a longtime fan of the Viner-turned-YouTuber, I was embarrassingly excited to hear that Cody Ko would be releasing a mixtape with his podcast co-host, Noel Miller. Released last Dec., “Locals Only” is the mixtape to end all mixtapes. Despite clever lyrics and well-produced beats, the album is very obviously meant to make fun of other rappers, with songs called “No Flex” and “Please Be A Hit.” All eight songs on the album are fun to dance and rap to, if you’re so inclined, and have lyrics that will make you laugh out loud.

“Trauma” by I Prevail
By Simon Northrip

The album was released in the middle part of March, and it has become a replay album for me since it released. A showcase of some of the ways that electronic sounds and rock can mix. I Prevail picked the first song, “Bow Down.” really well because it is one of the best songs on the album overall with other star songs like “Hurricane” and “Let Me Be Sad.” The album harks on mental health issues and does it in a really great way. I would recommend this album to any alternative metal/rock fans.

“Here Come the Runts” by AWOLNATION
By Amanda Landwehr
This is third studio album of American alternative rock group AWOLNATION. This record was released in 2018, and presents listeners with a refreshing mix of musical styles through acoustic songs such as “Handyman” and electro pop songs such as “Cannonball” that remain unique to AWOLNATION’s distinctive sound. This album is somewhat of an ode to time, love and growing older in a fun, heavy rock way. AWOLNATION continued their legacy of producing a truly unique sound with yet another great album.

“Almost Free” by Fidlar
By Drew Modjeski
Released in early 2019, the third studio album by California skate punk band Fidlar, “Almost Free” is a change of pace from their first two albums. Fidlar’s first two albums, “Fidlar” and “Too” were high energy album with song after song of classic socal skate rock reminiscent of early Blink-182. “Almost Free” does have some of these songs throughout the track list, like the opening track, “Get Off My Rock,” but the album also has songs that stray away from their typical style. The best example of this is the second to last song, “Thought. Mouth.” which flips through many styles from punk to pop and back. However, all the songs do not work as the track, “Called You Twice” feels too melancholy, and sounds like it was made for top 20 radio. Overall, “Almost Free” is a fresh album from Fidlar and is worth a listen.

“Lux Prima” by Karen O and Danger Mouse
By Zachary Wright
Danger Mouse wasn’t wrong by stating this album takes you a place rather than focusing on a certain sound. Karen O’s soothing, light but powerful voice carries you there. The two artists masterfully blend their sound, equal parts lush, forceful and haunting, to create this lucid experience of memories you’ve never had.

Categories: album review, Arts & Entertainment, arts and entertainment, Opinion, Recent Posts, Recent Stories

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