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Five Albums You Should Be Listening To Right Now: The Music Slut

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Five Albums You Should Be Listening To Right Now

Every week, titans of the mediasphere give Nerve their album recommendations. This week: the illustrious staff of The Music Slut.

Teenage Fanclub - Songs from Northern Britain

1. Teenage Fanclub, Songs from Northern Britain

A Catholic Education, Bandwagonesque, and Grand Prix may be the most celebrated Teenage Fanclub albums, but it's 1997's Songs from Northern Britain that I return to most frequently. Even if the whole record isn't a wonder, it features two of the Fanclub's strongest songs, "I Don't Want Control of You" and "Ain't That Enough." Teenage Fanclub is a literate band, but these songs are striking in their lyrical simplicity, combined with the group's trademark harmonies. I'll take that affirmation of life's simple pleasures any day. — Jamie McIntyre, co-founder and co-editor-in-chief

Listen: "I Don't Want Control of You"

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Panico - Kick

2. Panico, Kick

I've been raving about this record since its release in October last year. Coming by way of Franz Ferdinand's studio in Glasgow and the Chemikal Underground label, the Chilean group's third LP is an energetic slice of rock and roll. It's all spikes and angles, and seems to channel a kind of carnivalesque urgency — there's a feeling of mania that just doesn't let up across the ten tracks. It's terrific stuff, and is absolutely something you should be listening to at this very instant; at the very least, go and treat yourself to the magnificent "Waka Chiki" and "Reverberation Mambo." — J.M.

Listen: "Reverberation Mambo"

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Kokayi - Robots and Dinosaurs

3. Kokayi, Robots and Dinosaurs

Say what you like about the rise of "meta-" as an aesthetic crutch in popular culture, but is there any contemporary art form that works out its meta-poetic tensions as aggressively as hip-hop? Kokayi's contribution is this lyrically satisfying ode to adulthood. A skilled producer and writer, he's assembled a diverse set of tracks that gel unexpectedly well. The melodies snap with rock and R&B influences, and it's all laced with deep DC musical pride and stitched together by "found audio" from his son. By the time I realised this is a record with a thesis — let the grownups rap — I was already convinced. — Joe Howley, TMS staff writer

Listen: "Autumn Rules"

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Diane Cluck, Macy's Day Bird

4. Diane Cluck, Macy's Day Bird

The major charm in this album is its loneliness and the very distinct resonance of Cluck's apartment, where she made this album by herself. The windows are always open, and when she accompanies her own voice, she emerges from unpredictable angles and other rooms and distances. The guitars and out-of-tune piano and harmonium are the basic musical engines, occasionally joined by twinkling bells, recorder, and what sounds like a French horn, and it all unfolds inside this apartment, with Cluck's songs addressing absent company and then seamlessly slipping into flashback and just as quickly moving to a place of warning and advice, as if each are a room in this place, full of sound, where our narrator is alone. Cluck has wonderful control of her voice; she can sound very beautiful and then turn her back on tonality to make your skin crawl, bending into the places and notes that should not be there, and then back. "God Made It Rain" is the best song on this album, and maybe the best song I've ever heard. — Wil Wright, TMS staff writer

Listen: "God Made It Rain"

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Blood Warrior, Blood Warrior

5. Blood Warrior, Blood Warrior

Last year, a band called Blood Warrior, fronted by O'Death lead singer Greg Jamie, quietly put out a self-titled debut album. And during this unusually snowy winter here in New York, I can't stop returning to it again and again. It is the perfect soundtrack for bitter cold days, with songs that are equal parts solitary and melancholy and warm and uplifting. My favorite of the nine tracks are "Choir" and "Winter's Day." "Choir" is a rambling, nostalgic story of family and love that no matter how many times I play it, I find utterly captivating. The best part of the song is at 7:30 when everyone in the band, Joey (Greg's childhood best friend) and Kristin (Greg's wife) join in to form this uplifting chorus that makes my heart soar. — Jennifer Kellas, co-founder and co-editor-in-chief

Listen: "Choir"

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