I’m sure we’re asking the same question—how is it already September? But we’re also all jumping for joy because September means we cool off just a bit, things get kind of pretty outside, and the turn into autumn is just irresistible. Let’s check out some new tunes to accompany you on your sweet fall walks.
*Special Note for this Month: I obviously only heavily cover one main album per week, but there is so much good music coming out in September y’all! Please, take some time to check out new releases listed under each week. There is legitimately something for everyone.
The Highwomen – The Highwomen
Release date: 9/6
We could start by loving the fact that instead of a description of “band” or “artist,” this group is labeled “supergroup”—and with good reason. Check out the roster of amazing women: Grammy superstar Brandi Carlile, Queen of outlaw country Maren Morris, phenomenal country chart-ruling songwriter Natalie Hemby, and fiddle’s living legend Amanda Shires.
Brandi and Maren teamed up for the incredible “Common” a few months back for Maren’s release of Girl and it shook the country world. I was fortunate enough to be there as Brandi was a surprise guest for Maren’s CMA set to perform the powerful song live. Chills folks, through and through.
Dave Cobb (producer) brought this group together to pay homage to the Highway Men (Cash, Nelson, Jennings, and Kristofferson), and he has done a great job. If you’ve been complaining about new pop country being wrong, then this is everything right. These folksy girls bring incredible harmonies, starting with “Redesigning Women” which just seems so appropriate for today’s world and the many expectations placed on women now. They also have already released “Crowded Table” which is this incredible group harmony right from the start. There is truly no lead singer here. The women all work together.
The group also recorded their own story song, appropriately titled “Highwomen,” in which Yola Carter and Sheryl Crow also join to tell their stories. It’s really a fascinating exercise in storytelling that will take you back to the men they honor while still being entirely all their own.
PS—It’s not on the album, but go check out their cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “The Chain” that they did for The Kitchen. Whew. Gold.
Other 9/6 releases:
Lindsey Stirling – Artemis
Sleeping with Sirens – How It Feels to Be Lost
Iggy Pop – Free
Post Malone – Hollywood’s Bleeding
Goo Goo Dolls – Miracle Pill
Release date: 9/13
Well I’m not going to let the Goo Goo Dolls release a new album and not cover it. That would just be wrong. In their 12th (TWELFTH!) studio album, Robbie and Johnny are back with their pop-rock-but-I-swear-more-rock vibe. The track “Miracle Pill” has this very polished sound, but a catchy beat for an appropriate first single. You know what, 12 albums in, a band can dang well play in any way they want in the studio. I’m into it.
“Money, Fame & Fortune” almost seems to bring in some influence of bands that I think were influenced by GGD themselves. In this case, I’m hearing some Foster the People in there, but as always they break into deeper lyrics that are going to lighten and screw with your head all at once.
In August we got one more taste of the record with “Indestructible,” and now I’m getting a theme of pianos used much more this go-around. In a very guitar-reliant band, this is an interesting change that makes that pop light sound shine through. Johnny’s voice stays as edgy as ever spitting out these words like it’s nothing. The beats, the melodies, the catch through it all—this is an album that’s going to provide a heck of a live show, and the energy here is only a fraction of what it will be live. Looking forward to the rest of the album and what gems they will inevitably hide for our hearts.
Other 9/13 releases:
Charlie XCX – Charli
KoRn – The Nothing
Pixies – Beneath the Eyrie
Puddle of Mudd – Welcome to Galvania
The Lumineers – III
Blink-182 – NINE
Release date: 9/20
In what has been a little controversial in the world of pop-punk rock, Blink-182 is back with another album. I am going to try to put aside my Tom-purism and appreciate Matt Skiba and not even get into wanting Alkaline Trio back, either.
When “Blame It On My Youth” came out, I was obsessed. I don’t know why I didn’t catch onto the lack of Tom, but thanks a lot to Juan (friend at work) who shattered my Blink outlook shortly before I saw them perform this summer. Nonetheless, this song is solid and Travis’ drumming screams old school in a way that makes you hopeful for a seamless concert of old hits to new.
The next month, “Generational Divide” came out. It’s fast-pace, hard-hitting, and probably what all the old fans were looking for in a Blink single—think back to Dude Ranch, if the production had been polished, and the songs were shorter.
“Happy Days” brings you back to the emotional pop-punk song that you want to sit in the dark on your bed and listen to. It’s just so perfectly shaped for that, though I’ll say we start to hear these little pops of percussion that don’t just sound like Travis on the drums.
The one that’s knocked everyone for a loop seems to be “Darkside,” particularly the video, which features (and this was self-proclaimed by the band when they posted it) little kids doing dances they—or I—have never heard of. Now, purely based on the song? Solid, excellent dance song for the show. A good time! But just don’t ruin it for yourself and watch Mark Hoppus looking aged and awkward in the group.
So far, we’re kind of all split on this one, but you know what? I will listen to that album, hard. And then maybe follow it up with an Angels and Airwaves album… for sanity’s sake.
Other 9/20 releases:
Brittany Howard – Jamie
Fitz and the Tantrums – All the Feels
Keane – Cause and Effect
M83 – DSVII
Zac Brown Band – The Owl
Tegan and Sara – Hey, I’m Just Like You
Release date: 9/27
How these girls already have nine albums under their belts I will never understand. I feel like I just heard them across my dorm hall last night, and here we are with grown ladies who have even wrote a memoir.
“I’ll Be Back Someday” proves they’re still at it and seem to be having a blast. Turns out, as they were writing that memoir, they came across songs they wrote then. They put it best: “This is the record we never could have made a teenagers, full of songs we never could have written as adults.”
Time to go back through those old angst-filled notebooks, huh friends?
They followed up that fun with a slower “Hey, I’m Just Like You.” The intention on this album was to keep the youthful punk feel but with pop production, and they nailed it by the sounds of this. There are elements that don’t entirely seem to fit on their own, but within 20 seconds you get reminded of who you’re dealing with and it’s all okay. Trust me guys, I think we’re going to really like this one.
Other 9/27 releases:
Jon Pardi – Heartache Medication
Kristin Chenoweth – For the Girls
Sturgill Simpson – Sound & Fury
The New Pornographers – In the Morse Code of Brake Lights