First Listen

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First Listen

Enjoy previews of select, upcoming albums, in their entirety on FIRST LISTEN.

  1. First Listen: Panopticon, 'Roads To The North'
    Inspired by the birth of a child and a new career, Austin Lunn's triumphant, ebullient new album as Panopticon steps outside his curveball mixture of metal and American folk. More....
  2. First Listen: Adult Jazz, 'Gist Is'
    This English band's ideas move fast — riffs erupt only to disappear just as quickly. It's as though they're chasing super-concentrated bursts of bliss that gather into epic music. More....
  3. First Listen: Christopher Denny, 'If The Roses Don't Kill Us'
    This singer-songwriter has been through hard times — but you wouldn't know it from his new album. It blossoms with inventive turns of phrase, quiet affection and a peculiar sweetness. More....
  4. First Listen: Spider Bags, 'Frozen Letter'
    Frontman Dan McGee writes songs with more personality than almost any in garage rock. This album exudes the unabashed glee that comes from music played hard and with reason. More....
  5. First Listen: Jenny Lewis, 'The Voyager'
    The Voyager's clever (but never too-clever) sound builds an open structure within which Lewis can explore her current fascination: the weight of full adulthood, and its paradoxical precariousness. More....
  6. First Listen: Quetzal, 'Quetzanimales'
    Quetzal has spent two decades playing the soundtrack of its East L.A. neighborhoods: an evolving mash-up of Mexican son jarocho, low-rider oldies, cumbia, boleros, rock and blues. More....
  7. First Listen: Bear In Heaven, 'Time Is Over One Day Old'
    The Brooklyn band writes inventive epics that behave like highly concentrated energy shots. You have to pay attention, because key elements arrive and depart in a blink. More....
  8. First Listen: Wildest Dreams, 'Wildest Dreams'
    In his new band, venerable U.K. DJ Harvey Bassett indulges a love of psychedelic garage rock. Throughout Wildest Dreams, he displays an impeccable sense of when to rev up and when to lay off the gas. More....
  9. First Listen: Shabazz Palaces, 'Lese Majesty'
    Lese Majesty is MC and producer Ishmael Butler's most relentlessly noncommercial chapter yet. No hits, no singles; just raw, graceful tunes from the inventive former leader of Digable Planets. More....
  10. First Listen: Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, 'Hypnotic Eye'
    An air of mystery has helped keep Petty relevant for nearly 40 years. At 63, the rock legend's cynicism works hand-in-glove with his hard-earned cragginess. More....
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