Uh, August – ususally the time of shifting towards a more packed release schedule, but for some reason, there wasn’t much of a summer drought, so 2021 keeps getting us flooded with good music. This was especially crazy towards the end of August, with the 27th being one of the most packed release days of the year so far. What stuck with me during those past weeks? Let’s find out!

Kississippi – Mood Ring

August 6 // Triple Crown Records

I was not expecting to like this as much as I did. Mood Ring is an extremely loveable record from an artist who just oozes charm with every note, and establishes a wonderful flair throughout the record. Kississippi plays into the vein of the contemporary trend of power pop, but making irresistibly good songs definitely balances that out.

YouTube // Review

Vessel Of Iniquity – The Doorway

August 6 // Sentient Ruin Laboratories

You like bleak harshness and traveling deep into the abyss of industrial turmoil? Glad to hear that, since I have the exact right thing for you! Vessel Of Iniquity‘s The Doorway is one of the most heavy records of the year, and a must-listen for every extreme metal fan.

Bandcamp // YouTube

IDER – shame

August 6 // Independent

Maybe leaning more towards indie than pop, IDER grabbed my attention instantly with a great sound and a collection of catchy tunes on their new release shame. A fantastic album.

Bandcamp // YouTube

Groza – The Redemptive End

August 8 // AOP Records

While The Redemptive End is clearly influenced by bands like Mgla and Uada, it’s nothing to dismiss to just have some more good black metal. Groza know how to handle melody and pace, ending up delivering some of the finest black metal of the year.

Bandcamp // YouTube

Unreqvited – Beautiful Ghosts

August 13 // Prophecy Productions

It’s just fun to watch Unreqvited grow, change, and transform with every new release. Started as an underground blackgaze project with noteworthy songwriting skills, Beautiful Ghosts shows an artist that’s come to terms with his musical identity, on a path that just keeps getting more and more interesting.

Bandcamp // YouTube // Review

Boldy James & The Alchemist – Bo Jackson

August 13 // ALC

Boldy James is making waves since a couple of years by now. As part of the Griselda collective, he is probably most known for his collaborations with hip hop mastermind The AlchemistBo Jackson marks the third full-length those two worked on together, and it’s yet again proof that there is an incredible symbiosis happening between both artist, marking all future collabs as must-listens in my book.


A Great Big Pile Of Leaves – Pono

August 13 // Topshelf Records

Definitely one of the most heartwarming and comforting albums I’ve heard this year. 10 years after their first full-length, this Brooklyn-based indie rock outfit returned with a beautifully warm and cozy record, which feels just right.

Bandcamp // YouTube // Review

Burial In The Sky – The Consumed Self

August 13 // Rising Nemesis Records

Technical and progressive death metal has a good year. One of the finest examples of the new heights in the genre comes from Burial In The Sky and their new record The Consumed Self, which shows a very melodic and nearly catchy side of prog death. Plus, it has just the right amount of sax.

Bandcamp // YouTube // Review

Tacoma Narrows Bridge Disaster –  The World Inside

August 19 // Post. Recordings

Another genre that experiences a great year is post-rock. The World Inside, the new record by UK-based outfit Tacoma Narrows Bridges Disaster, adds to the pantheon of great post-rock records in 2021 with its progressive songwriting and great sound design. Great stuff for every genre fan!

Bandcamp // YouTube

Morly – ‘Til I Start Speaking

August 20 // Cascine

A critically overlooked album that steadily grows to be one of the most impressive displays of songwriting and artistic vision I’ve heard in the last months. Morly‘s ability to mix indie with pop, jazz, and more experimental ideas is inspiring and great. I can’t recommend this record enough.

Bandcamp // YouTube

Deafheaven – Infinite Granite

August 20 // Sargent House

I wasn’t exactly fond of the first singles Deafheaven released prior to the drop of Infinite Granite. The band had dropped all their black metal sensibilites in favor of going full shoegaze. Well, okay. When I finally got my hands on the record, I was blown away by the level of composition, songwriting, and stylistic confidence. While being the farthest away from their black metal roots, the band managed to give us one of the best albums to date.

Bandcamp // YouTube // Review

Villagers – Fever Dreams

August 20 // Domino

Incredibly colorful and warm. Everything just sits at the right place. Moments of intimacy are followed by moments of extravagant spectacle, but always with a wonderful feeling of coziness. Sometimes a record is special in just being right.

Bandcamp // YouTube

quickly, quickly – The Long and Short of It

August 20 // Ghostly International

Somewhere between indie pop, neo-soul, and hip hop, quickly, quickly is an incredibly charming project with a promising future. Portland-based Graham Jonson understands current musical trends and playfully reflects on them while giving everything a fresh spin with neat and interesting little details.

Bandcamp // YouTube

Pile – Songs Known Together, Alone

August 20 // Exploding In Sound Records

Technically, I don’t cover records that consist of previously released songs. Pile‘s newest offering Songs Known Together, Alone takes several songs recorded by the project in the past, and re-imagines them as solo performances by mastermind Rick Maguire. This album ends up being one of the most creatively interesting projects by the band, and I’m once again in awe in the presence of Pile.

Bandcamp // YouTube

Maarja Nuut – Hinged

August 20 // Indepedent

Let’s make this a quick one. Put this record on, close your eyes, and get carried away into an unknown world. What a stunning experience!

Bandcamp // YouTube

Cleo Sol – Mother

August 20 // Forever Living Originals

Her feature on Little Simz‘ new album Sometimes I Might Be Introvert (which is a fucking banger and one of the best albums of the year) already made splash, but please look a bit further and take a listen to her fantastic new album Mother. Maybe a bit under the radar, but this is some damn fine soul.

Bandcamp // YouTube

Men I Trust – Untourable Album

August 25 // Independent

There is something so damn perfect about this band. They know exactly what they’re doing, stylistically, keeping it simple and crisp with every song. The smooth vocal lines, guitars drenched by reverb, and the phenomenal pocket of drums and bass make Untourable Album on point, once again.

Bandcamp // YouTube

Headshrinker – Callous Indifference

August 27 // Independent

On first listen, Callous Indifference sounds a bit chaotic and not that well-produced, but the choice in sound is exactly that – a choice. It sounds raw, rough, and abrasive, adding to the unnverving atmosphere and creating a new voice in extreme metal to keep an ear out for.

Bandcamp // YouTube

Arrowounds – The Rise and Fall of the Melting World

August 27 // Lost Tribe Sound

I usually connect to only a small handful of ambient albums per year. While artist can easily master the surface level of the genre, filling ambient with narrative, depth, and texture is incredibly hard. Arrowounds adds to this catalog of outstanding ambient artists with ease, delivering an album that is compelling yet incredibly inviting.


Sugar Horse – The Live Long After

August 27 // Small Pond

This album hit like a sledgehammer. I had Sugar Horse on my radar as a very promising band before, but The Live Long After is such a masterpiece of its kind that it practically just won itself a place as one of the best albums of the year.

Bandcamp // Youtube // Review

Sons of Alpha Centauri – Push

August 27 // Exile On Mainstream Records

A drastic change in style, but a welcome one! Sons Of Alpha Centauri reanimated themselves with this bold statement of an album. Push is catchy, surprising, and exciting. Spin this if you have wanna have a cool time.

Bandcamp // Youtube // Review

Low Flying Hawks – FUYU

August 27 // Magnetic Eye Records

Great doom/stoner records are rare, and I’m more than glad to have found an exceptional one with FUYU. The riffs are heavy, and the vibe just oozes these thick hazes and slow grooves. Don’t skip this!

Bandcamp // Youtube // Review

Leprous – Aphelion

August 27 // Inside Out Music

I’m going to be honest with you: I’d written Leprous off after The Congregation. Back then, the band showed first signs on playing by the numbers, without having anything to say artistically. Aphelion shows a band that is extremely hungry and full of great ideas again, pushing themselves out of their comfort zone and elegantly embracing new elements along the way. Well played!

Youtube // Review

Turnstile – GLOW ON

August 27 // Roadrunner Records

Turnstile have been shaping up to becoming the next big thing for a while, and now they are taking the next intense step with their new album GLOW ON, basically creating a new genre along the way. The dream punk vibe of this album is irresistible, and the band manages to be impressively authentic with every choice they make.


Ngaiire – 3

August 27 // Remote Control

This is smoothness, bottled up and poured into 10 songs. Ngaiire is finally back, and with her comes probably the best thing she’s ever done in her career so far. An album that balances timelessness and zeitgeist in a fascinating way!

Bandcamp // Youtube

Haiku Salut – The Hill, The Light, The Ghost

August 27 // Independent

Pure magic. I’ve gotten lost in this beautiful album a couple of times by now, and I’m already looking forward to the next time. So many great ideas in sound design and texturizing, and some hypnotic melodies all around.

Bandcamp // Youtube

Big Red Machine – How Long Do You Think It’s Gonna Last?

August 27 // 37D03D/Jagjaguwar

Big Red Machine managed to stay warm, comforting, and cohesive despite all the big names featured on this record. While there’s nothing extraordinary about this record, it might just be exactly what you need!

Bandcamp // Youtube

Thanks for scrolling!

Toni Meese

Toni Meese

I know more than you.

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