Self-Titled (Loma Vista/Republic)
For her self-titled major label debut, St. Vincent (née Annie Clark) has augmented her angular brand of loopy guitar pop with a bristling arsenal of kaleidoscopic Day-Glo synths, making this her busiest work to date. Lead single "Birth In Reverse" is the album's statement of intent that jostles with nervous energy and head-spinning turns of melody, revealing Clark's ability to unearth new sonic territory even under big label supervision.
St. Vincent is out now
Tomorrow's Hits (Sacred Bones)
After embracing the '70s country rock influences that haunt the blistering garage punk on the 2013 album New Moon, Brooklyn-based quintet the Men have gone full-Nashville on Tomorrow's Hits, a dusty collection of worn-in rockers that's equal parts Bob Seger, the Band and Bruce Springsteen. The speedy, organ-fueled burner "Different Days" is destined
to be pouring out of dive bar jukeboxes for the next few decades.
Tomorrow's Hits is out March 4
No. 2 (Kranky)
Christina Vantzou garnered plenty of accolades for the "post-classical chamber music" of her 2011 album No.1, and now she returns with a fuller, more challenging release. Recording with a 15-piece ensemble, Vantzou crafts a cohesive, impressionistic score that both swells boldly (opener "Anna Mae") and chills beautifully ("Vancouver Island Quartet") with ethereal soundscapes that are simply hair-raising in their measured, patient execution.
No. 2 is out now