Admittedly, Blonde (Blond?) should've been on our must-play list in August, but since Frank Ocean decided to surprise-drop this one on a random Saturday last month, we're including it here. We're also including it here because to ignore what will likely be one of the best albums of the year would be criminal. Ocean has always lived on the edges of contemporary pop/R&B, but with his latest, he's proving he's a genre unto himself. On Blonde, ethereal beats meet lush melodies and lyrics that cover everything from romantic sacrifice ("Siegfried") to the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina ("Pink White" and "Nights"). The album has a huge host of contributors (only Ocean can get Beyoncé to sing back up), but this is a pure Ocean album, through and through.
LOS ANGELES – Metallica is preparing to self-destruct -- in a good way! The band announced Thursday it's releasing its first album in eight years, the longest Metallica has ever gone between studio albums. "Hardwired ... To Self-Destruct" will feature 80 minutes of music from the veteran heavy metal group. The album is scheduled for release Nov. 18. Metallica debuted the album's first track, "Hardwired," on 93X (KXXR-FM) in Minneapolis and the accompanying music video on YouTube .
His compatriot Rocky might be the marquee name of Harlem's A AP Mob, but with his second official album Darold Ferguson, Jr. has officially become the emotional polestar of the crew. He's still dealing humor and sincerity in equal measure, and things move so quickly---of 15 songs, only one breaks the four-minute mark---that even saggier moments pass before you notice. The guest list is a long one, and it's not coincidental that others feature on the album's standout tracks ("New Level" with Future, "Strive" with Missy Elliott, "Let it Bang" with Schoolboy Q). In fact, Ferg's greatest asset might be his embrace of the ensemble; by refusing to be a standalone entree, he gives makes sure there's more than one side to every story.
Radiohead's ninth studio album "A Moon Shaped Pool" is now available to purchase on iTunes and Amazon and streaming on Tidal and Apple Music. The groundbreaking rock group released two songs, "Burn the Witch" and "Daydreaming," online earlier in the week in a lead-up to the 11-track album's release Sunday. Physical copies of the album can be pre-ordered too, but won't be available until June 17. Radiohead begins a world tour May 20 in The Netherlands. The band will visit New York and Chicago in July and California in August.