Update Your Playlists

15 Albums We’re Looking Forward to Listening to This Summer

April 28, 2016 Culture By

Summer’s the time for road trips cross-country and late-night bonfires. It’s also a time to rock out to newly released summer anthems. A range of artists are putting out new albums between April and June, spanning from esoteric indie rock to jazz and electronica. So check out these new records as they come out, and update your playlist for whatever the warmer months have in store.

Everything You’ve Come to Expect


Artist: The Last Shadow Puppets
Genre: Indie Rock
Release Date: April 1

The Arctic Monkey’s Alex Turner and the Rascal’s Miles Kane come together for a follow-up album, eight years after their debut. In two thirds of an hour, the duo covers everything from slow, crooning ballads to hard-rocking punk anthems. Read the full review here.

Are You Serious


Artist: Andrew Bird
Genre: Singer / Songwriter
Release Date: April 1

This album by Bird features collaborations with Fiona Apple and Blake Mills, and it was produced recording industry guru by Tony Berg. Personal and emotive, the songs on Are You Serious openly reflect on Bird’s own life.

White Album


Artist: Weezer
Genre: Rock
Release Date: April 1

In their fourth self-titled release and 10th studio album, Weezer continue to pump out catchy singles and chart-topping hits. It’s classic Weezer, full of summer anthems and sing-along choruses.

Call It What It Is


Artist: Ben Harper & the Innocent Criminals
Genre: Rock
Release Date: April 8

The first album with his band in nine years, Call It What It Is was recorded by Harper in a series of sessions spanning a year. It’s 11 tracks of Harper, blending intimate moments with political statements, poetic verses and gritty riffs.

Dois Amigos, Um Século de Música: Multishow Live


Artist: Caetano Veloso and Gilberto Gil
Genre: Brazilian Songwriter
Release Date: April 8

A collaboration between legendary Grammy-winning Brazilians Caetano Veloso and Gilberto Gil, this album was recorded during a concert in Brazil last year and contains the entire show (28 songs). Longtime friends, Veloso and Gil created the Tropicália movement, which blended popular culture with traditional music from Brazil.

The Diary


Artist: J Dilla
Genre: Hip-Hop
Release Date: April 15

The Diary was originally set to be released in 2002, but was shelved by MCA. It’s the sixth full-length posthumous album of Dilla’s music, and features collaborations with Snoop Dogg, Madlib, Pete Rock and others.

Take All My Loves: Nine Shakespeare Sonnets


Artist: Rufus Wainwright
Genre: Singer / Songwriter
Release Date: April 22

Wainwright celebrates the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death with an album featuring nine of the Bard’s sonnets, both sung and recited. It’s a release with a star-studded cast of collaborators including Helena Bonham Carter, Carrie Fisher, Anna Prohaska and William Shatner.

The Unity Sessions


Artist: Pat Metheny
Genre: Jazz
Release Date: May 6

Taken from a live performance in 2015, this album features 13 songs by Metheny, one that he co-wrote with Ornette Coleman and a standard by Ray Noble. Metheny — who has won 20 Grammy Awards across 12 different categories — continues to create incredible music.

I Still Do


Artist: Eric Clapton
Genre: Rock
Release Date: May 20

I Still Do, Clapton’s 23rd studio album, was produced by Glyn Johns, who worked on Clapton’s incredibly popular Slowhand album (and who also produced Led Zeppelin, the Beatles, the Stones, the Eagles). Featuring 12 new songs, it’s a classic and beautifully familiar blend of blues and rock.

The Triad


Artist: Pantha du Prince
Genre: Electronica
Release Date: May 20

The Triad is Pantha du Price’s first studio album in six years. It’s a shimmering display of “Sonic House” music, incorporating acoustic instruments and pulsing electronic grooves.

Day of the Dead


Artist: Various Artists
Genre: Rock
Release Date: May 20

Curated by Aaron and Bryce Dessner of The National, this six-hour tribute to the Grateful Dead features over 60 artists performing on 59 tracks. It’s a fitting celebration of the Dead’s music, and all profits will go the the Red Hot Organization to help fight HIV/AIDS. Artists include: The War On Drugs, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Terry Riley, Mumford and Suns, Bela Fleck and more.

Fallen Angels


Artist: Bob Dylan
Genre: Singer / Songwriter
Release Date: May 20

Dylan’s 37th studio album Fallen Angels features 12 tracks, all of which are American tunes written by some the the country’s most lauded songwriters, like Johnny Mercer, Harold Arlen, Sammy Cahn and Carolyn Leigh.

I Sing in Silence


Artist: Goat
Genre: Psychedelic Rock
Release Date: May 27

This experimental Swedish band’s small release features hypnotic music recorded mostly on acoustic instruments. Swishing percussion, twangy plucked instruments, flutes and voices make for a refreshing take on psychedelia.

Stranger to Stranger


Artist: Paul Simon
Genre: Singer / Songwriter
Release Date: June 3

Stranger to Stranger is Simon’s 13th solo record and shows how his songwriting continues to break new ground. New musical textures from Italian electronic artist Clap! Clap! show up on three tracks, but his biggest inspiration comes from theorist Harry Partch, who advocated for “speech-singing” and just intonation. Simon recorded sounds from various Partch instruments, which use microtonal tunings, for the album, and shaped vocal lines in a way more closely resembling human speech.

The Magic


Artist: Deerhoof
Genre: Rock
Release Date: June 24

San Francisco’s Deerhoof recorded The Magic over a week in a rented office space in New Mexico (where they could crank up the volume and forget the studio). It’s a frenetic, fun, 15-song album that blends elements of punk, glam, hip-hop and doo-wop.

John Zientek

John Zientek is Gear Patrol's style editor and in-house guitar authority. He grew up on the West Coast.

More by John Zientek | Follow on Contact via Email
Sign Up for Gear Patrol Newsletters
Get the best new products, deals,
and stories in your inbox daily.

By submitting your email, you agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy and to receive email correspondence from us.