Searching for something to listen to this weekend? Yahoo Music has you covered with a rundown of some of this week’s biggest and buzzing releases, including Kirstin, Daley, Mura Masa, and more. Check back every Friday for a fresh list of albums to help fuel your weekend playlists.
Kirstin: L O V E (RCA). Best known as one-fifth of vocal sensations Pentatonix, Kirstin Maldonado is the latest member of the band to strike out on her own. She takes her solo foray seriously, going in what might be an expected pop/top 40 direction, but one that is crisply, technically proficient and polished. There are no ragged edges here.
Daley: The Spectrum (The End/BMG). The R&B singer-songwriter from Manchester, U.K. found himself rocketing to fame on both sides of the pond following his 2014 full-length debut. For his sophomore effort, the recruits some serious power to help his own already formidable vocals along, including contributions from Jill Scott, Swindle, and Chiiild.
Mura Masa: Mura Masa (Anchor Point/Downtown/Interscope). Twenty-one-year-old British electronic producer/multi-instrumentalist Alex Crossan recruited a heavy guest list for his highly anticipated debut, including such names as Damon Albarn, Christine and the Queens, Charli XCX, Jamie Lidell, A$AP Rocky, Bonzai, Desiigner, NAO, Tom Tripp, and A.K. Paul. The result is a clever and infectious mix of hip-hop, dubstep, trap, EDM, and pop.
Coldplay: Kaleidoscope (Parlophone). Coldplay’s new EP, designed as a companion to 2015’s A Head Full of Dreams, may at first seem to be mostly a convenient vehicle for its hit collaboration with the Chainsmokers, “Something Just Like This.” However, it also offers up a wash of vintage-sounding Coldplay vibes in its short tracklisting, plus an unexpected pairing up with rapper Big Sean.
The Dears: Times Infinity Volume Two (Dangerbird). Montreal’s the Dears ended a six-year break last year by releasing Times Infinity Volume One; this is the other half of a planned double-album release, and it’s the darker side of the whole. Those looking for a taste of bitter will find it in the edgy, irritated lyrical matter explored here.
Silverstein: Dead Reflection (Rise). Silverstein have been around for nearly two decades now, and prove they aren’t planning on going anywhere with their latest release. The set provides a collection of Warped Tour-friendly tunes that show off the band’s signature melodic — and loud — approach.
Shabazz Palaces: Quazarz: Born on a Gangster Star (Sub Pop). Helmed by Digable Planets’ Ishmael Butler, this space-agey set boasts an unusually diverse list of guests including Julian Casblanacas, Thundercat, Gamble and Huff, Quazarz, Thaddillac, Loud Eyes Lou, The Palaceer Lazaro, and Darrius.
Night Argent: The Fear (Outerloop). Washington state’s alt-pop/rockers Night Argent deliver a tight six-song EP, embracing unabashedly retro alternative influences, wistful ballads, and artfully infectious melodies in one brief package.
12 Stones: Picture Perfect (Cleopatra). This is veteran post-grunge rockers 12 Stones’ first studio album in five years; fans will find it’s as if the band never took a break at all. True to their name they include a dozen brand-new songs, plus re-records of two older hits, “Anthem For The Underdog” and “We Are One.”
Offa Rex: The Queen of Hearts (Nonesuch). This is the debut project combining English singer/multi-instrumentalist Olivia Chaney and Oregon rockers the Decemberists; it’s an interesting mix of traditional cultural music, psychedelic folk, and rock. Overall one of the more majestic, ambitious, and unusual releases this year.
Oh Wonder: Ultralife (Island). Indie pop duo Josephine Vander Gucht and Anthony West wrote, mixed and produced their sophomore effort themselves, keeping their control completely over what actually sounds like a very carefree, effortlessly cohesive set of tunes.
The Vamps: Night & Day (Night Edition) (Virgin). The boy band takes on, basically, every current pop trend possible on their third album, skating from dance-friendly upbeat tunes, to heartbreak laments, to acoustic guitar-laced, Sheeran-like ballads all in a fairly short set. It’s a lot to digest, but they handle things with aplomb.
Kidz Bop Kids: Kidz Bop 35 (Kidz Bop). The latest installment of the wildly popular children’s music series features a whole new cast of kids, as well as an original song included among their covers of current hits. The tunes tackled (and cleaned up for wee ears) include the latest from Bruno Mars, the Chainsmokers, Ed Sheeran, Katy Perry, Zayn, and more.