“Crazy For You”
The best musical representation of California since The Beach Boys, “Crazy For You” sounds like a high school garage band’s first demo in all the right ways. The fuzzy, sometimes whiny vocals and light, poppy guitar riffs match perfectly with simplistic lyrics about love. Singer Bethany Cosentino offers, “When I’m with you, I have fun,” lyrics that Taylor Swift herself would approve of. From start to finish the album will float you to the sunny, smoke-filled beaches of SoCal, making it a perfect escape for the approaching winter months. Soak up the rays of “California Dreamin'” again and again.
“The Letting Go”
Bonnie “Prince” Billy
You may know William Oldham for starring with Zac Galifianakis in an alternative video for Kanye West’s “Can’t Tell Me Nothing,” but he has been making music and performing under various pseudonyms for 13 years. His fourth full-length album as Bonnie “Prince” Billy, is a haunting and delicate work of American folk albeit with a backwoods snarl. “Wai” is a stellar track of longing and desire, and this album is essential for those familiar with Bon Iver or Jim White.
(DFTBA Records LLC)
The debut album from YouTube hit Jason Munday has not failed to appeal to the star’s large fanbase. An electronic sound is prevalent throughout the album, especially in songs “Some Imagination” and “I’ll See Her There.” The highlight of this self-titled, Internet-driven album is definitely Munday’s “California Dorks,” a parody of Katy Perry’s “California Girls.” The song’s music video has gotten over 515,000 hits on YouTube, and Perry even posted the link to the music video on her Twitter page. For fans of electronica, techno or music with solid lyrics, Skyway Flyer is sure to please.
“Light Me Up”
The Pretty Reckless
You might know Taylor Momsen as “Gossip Girl’s” Jenny Humphrey, but when she’s not on the Upper East Side, the 17-year-old fronts a band called “The Pretty Reckless,” which formed in 2009. Though their first album “Light Me Up” has not been released in the U.S., it hit the No. 1 spot on the U.K.’s rock charts. While Momsen is not known as the sweetest girl in the music business, she really can sing, nailing it on tracks like “My Medicine” and “Miss Nothing.” Often compared to a young Courtney Love, “Light Me Up” definitely embodies a ’90s grunge rock feel without all of the flannel.