Welcome to October, where new album releases are always treats and only occasionally tricks. The white whale of the indie rock universe, Blue Rev is the much-mythologized third album from Toronto’s Alvvays; to say that it’s worth the wait is a colossal understatement. Reuniting for another set of lopsided-yet-anthemic pop, Into the Blue is the first album in eight years from James Mercer and Danger Mouse’s Broken Bells project. Last year, Courtney Marie Andrews released her first-ever collection of poetry; the prolific Americana singer follows it up this week with Loose Future, recorded in upstate New York. Anaïs Mitchell, Eric D. Johnson, and Josh Kaufman captivated the folk music world with their self-titled debut as Bonny Light Horseman in early 2020; their sophomore effort, Rolling Golden Holy, continues their mission to breathe new life into time-honored tradition.
Philadelphia’s cosmic jazz institution Sun Ra Arkestra revisit classic material and spotlight 98-year-young bandleader Marshall Allen on Living Sky. Adventurous Chicago musician NNAMDÏ melds humor with heartache on Please Have a Seat. Johanna Warren‘s sixth album, Lessons for Mutants, embraces flaws and delivers a warm, organic set recorded in the British countrysde. Despite its modest title, Nothing Special marks the start of a new chapter for longtime Okkervil River leader Will Sheff; fans will immediately recognize his distinctive, intricate songwriting on this solo debut. PRESS PLAY on these new releases below. Listen for spotlights on new records like these (and more) every Friday on the XPN Morning Show and Indie Rock Hit Parade.