Music Mayhem: EDGE reviews the latest albums

A new album off of Drive-Thru Records, Hidden In Plain View falls into the punk/emo category, with 11 tracks of angst, strong drum beats and the vocalist’s slight tendency to scream. The artwork on the actual case is visually interesting, void of any punk, anti-everything attitude. The songs cover subjects typical to punk/emo bands: second chances, addictions, memories and, of course, the past.

Kitsch is exactly the word for this album. Eclectic and soft, Spektor’s voice is melodic and solid no matter the beat. Eleven tracks of interesting lyrics and predominantly piano instrumentation, the songs are varied in length, subject and beat. Despite the unique lyrics and varied tempo, it’s hard to understand what Spektor says, making it easy to tune out her words and focus on the piano. Added bonus, the album comes with a Soviet Kitsch DVD.

Nominated the “Artist of the Year” by Australian Rolling Stone, Missy Higgins is a strong vocalist with instrumental talent. Compared to Vanessa Carlton, Michelle Branch and Sheryl Crow, Higgins breathy soulful lyrics are refreshing and vibrant. Standout track number two, titled “Ten Days,” talks about a past relationship and letting go of loved ones, a rehashed topic that’s given a new touch. Higgins is certainly a new artist to watch.

River City Rebels Hate To Be Loved

Temperamental, underground and oh-so-rebellious, River City Rebels presents in-your-face punchy beats with strong drum undertones and guitar rifts-the seven-man band has every instrument covered. In tune with rebellion, the lyrics are raw and hold nothing back with frequent cursing, blunt gore and sarcastic chimes about “her new man.” For a full-out rock star vibe, some tattoos and slightly ’80s flair, rock out to the River City Rebels.

So:El Momento

The new jazz collection from Ludovic Navarro, a.k.a. St. Germain, is retro and completely chill. A renowned jazz master, he blends sax, flute and percussion perfectly, creating smooth retro grooves. For some tracks, the instrumentals are accented by a Barry White-esque voice. Nine tracks of jazz and slick sounds, So: El is perfect for entertaining.

Joanna Davila can be contacted at j. davila 1 @um iami. edu.