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5 albums you need to hear this week

With music by Nia Archives, Meet Me @ the Altar, Das Koolies, Miley Cyrus and Sleaford Mods

By Rolling Stone UK

In the age of streaming, it’s never been easier to listen to new music — but with over 60,000 new songs added to Spotify every day, it’s also never been harder to know what to put on. Every week, the team at Rolling Stone UK will run down some of the best new releases that have been added to streaming services.

This week, we’ve highlighted records by Nia Archives, Meet Me @ the Altar, Das Koolies, Miley Cyrus and Sleaford Mods.

Nia Archives – Sunrise Bang Ur Head Against Tha Wall

On her latest EP, Nia Archives proves why she’s a leading light of jungle music, bringing the genre to a whole new generation. The mellifluous ‘That’s Tha Way Life Goes’ is ideal for the small hours, while the title track could be a perfect closer for a summer rave. Pounding beats are present and correct, but it still feels deeply personal.

Listen on: Spotify | Apple Music | TIDAL | Amazon Music

Meet Me @ the Altar – Past // Present // Future

When the pop punk history books are written, March 10, 2023, may well go down as a date of key importance; it’s difficult to shake the feeling that a changing of the guard is occurring, as Meet Me @ the Altar release their debut album on the same day that titans of the genre Panic! at the Disco play their last-ever show. Moreover, as the first group made up of women of colour to be signed to Fueled by Ramen, a label also home to Panic! and Paramore, there is even more of a sense of the dawn of a new, more inclusive era, driven by the resurgence in pop punk popularity among Generation Z. The appropriately-titled Past // Present // Future, then, represents a milestone moment, and these songs will stand up to future scrutiny, scored through as they are with the Florida trio’s effervescent melodies and witty, finger-on-the-pulse lyricism.

Listen on: Spotify | Apple Music | TIDAL | Amazon Music

Das Koolies – The Condemned

Hardcore fans of Super Furry Animals will recall that way back in 2000, the Welsh indie rock mavericks recorded an experimental electronic album under the name Das Koolies, which ultimately never saw the light of day. Now, with the band apparently remaining in a deep freeze after their warmly-received 2016 reunion, and with frontman Gruff Rhys continuing to focus on solo work, the remaining members of the group – Huw Bunford, Guto Pryce, Cian Ciaran and Dafydd Ieuan – have revived the Das Koolies moniker and issued a mission statement for their new outfit via this debut EP, which blends pulsing electronics with sharp hooks and carries through the eccentric outsider spirit of SFA in the process.

Listen on: Spotify | Apple Music | Bandcamp | Amazon Music

Miley Cyrus – Endless Summer Vacation

Given she’s one of the world’s biggest pop stars, it’s interesting to note that Miley Cyrus’ discography over the past decade suggests that she doesn’t really do conventional. Having reinvented herself with the outrageous Bangerz in 2013, collaborated with The Flaming Lips on the lurid, druggy Miley Cyrus & Her Dead Petz two years later, embraced her country heritage with Younger Now in 2017 and then ushered in her rock era on 2020’s Plastic Hearts, this eighth full-length Endless Summer Vacation, has been positioned as an unusually straightforward pop affair. Beneath the chart-friendly gleaming synths of lead single ‘Flowers’, are plenty of stylistic detours, with nods to all of the past stops on her music journey, as well as a promising new sideline in exhilarating electropop.

Listen on: Spotify | Apple Music | TIDAL | Amazon Music

Sleaford Mods – UK GRIM

It’s a bleak reflection of the state of Britain that Sleaford Mods, who’s stock-in-trade is furious ranting over queasy, abrasive beats, feel like the most appropriate soundtrackers of this particular chapter in the nation’s history. At the end of a week that saw the present government plumb new depths of casual cruelty, the Nottingham duo return with a record that, even by their own standards, sounds exactly like a Cold War Steve creation made aural, with Jason Williamson delivering sardonic, grimly funny state-of-the-nation addresses atop Andrew Fearn’s reliably eccentric production. There’s also, however, some left-field indicators of the pair’s willingness to evolve, such as beguiling collaborations with Florence Shaw of Dry Cleaning as well as – do not adjust your screen – Perry Farrell and Dave Navarro from Jane’s Addiction.

Listen on: Spotify | Apple Music | Bandcamp | TIDAL | Amazon Music