What a nice month. We had some super decent releases in May, covering a wide variety of styles. As usual, this potpourri of records will definitely sweeten up your listening habits, so come closer and enjoy the ride!

Syncre – Correlation

May 7 // Rafage


Tokyo-based trio Syncre have a special way of combining math rock with electronics. While a lot of Japanese bands in the math rock scene use electronic elements as a tender layer, Syncre tend to establish it as a more aggressive part of their sound, which lets them sound fresh and unique. A great gem!

Spotify // Youtube

Stuff. – T(h)reats

May 7 // Sdban Records

I admit, I’m a bit biased here. Stuff. were one of the last bands I’ve seen live on stage, and listening to their fantastic new album T(h)reats brings me back to the energy this nu jazz/electronic band brought into their stage presence. Criminally overlooked, Stuff. deserve every bit of attention.

Bandcamp // Youtube

Grey Aura – Zwart vierkant

May 7 // Onism Productions

Grey Aura are the perfect example for why black metal established itself as the most forward-thinking part of metal. You’ve never heard anything like Zwart vierkant, I can guarantee you that. Be brave, press play, and get lost in the band’s unique soundscapes.

Bandcamp // Youtube

Squid – Bright Green Field

May 7 // Warp Records

You like Idles, but feel their weirdness is a tiny bit too formulaic? You are missing some Battles extravaganza in your art punk? Squid got your back. The London-based act came out of nowhere for me, and completely blew me away. This record is a force of nature.

Bandcamp // Youtube

mt.ida – mt.ida

May 7 // Independent

mt. ida

We’re always getting there, eventually. Skramz is part of The Noise Of‘s DNA, like my weird obsession with the movement, so I will dump in the finest skramz every month. mt.ida came together bound by their admiration for screamo and ’90s indie like Pinback, and you can hear those influences in every second of this fantastic release.


Hundreds of AU – Acting From Remote Satellites

May 7 // Independent

hundreds of au

And the skramz train doesn’t stop. Hundreds of AU are no strangers to the scene, and their long-awaited album Acting From Remote Satellites has the right amount of punky edge, skramzy emotionality, and hardcore energey to shine as one of the finest efforts in 2021.

Bandcamp // Youtube

Graham Costello – Second Lives

May 7 // Gearbox Records

graham costello

ObeliskGraham Costello‘s previous record from 2019, was one of my favorite jazz records of that year. There was a certain elegance and a special pulse to that record, which usually comes from having a drummer as the leader. Naturally, I was super curious about Second Lives. Costello easily exceeded my expectations with a smoothly floating and crisply produced modern jazz record.

Bandcamp // Youtube

Tingsek – Home

May 7 // World Of Its Own Recordings


God, I love those little surprises. Stumbling over great records by accident is one of the things that can really brighten your day, which was the case when I found Tingsek‘s Scandinavian soul gem Home. This is fun, sunny, groovy and smooth. Perfect for the warm days.


Contour – Love Suite

May 13 // Good Question

With a runtime around 20 minutes, Love Suite is rather short, but it uses its time to display a forward-thinking piece of art, settling somewhere between dark art pop and soul. Those songs and ideas are more about vibe and atmosphere, but the unusual pacing and gripping sound design make this something you shouldn’t miss.


Sons Of Kemet – Black To the Future

May 14 // Impulse! Records

Shabaka Hutchings earned his place on this feature with countless fantastic jazz-and-beyond releases. The newest Sons Of Kemet dabbles deeply in afrobeat, benefitting once again from Theon Cross’ distinctive way of playing tuba. They did it, once again.

Youtube // Review

Aloa Input – Devil’s Diamond Memory Collection

May 14 // Siluh Records

I’m in love with this album. Fuck me, it’s so good. The right amount of catchiness, the right amount of weirdness. And drowned in rainbows. Everything about Devil’s Diamond Memory Collection is a shining example of expressive creativity and condensed charm.

Bandcamp // Youtube

Vola – Witness

May 21 // Mascot Label Group


Not gonna lie here: after Applause Of A Distant Crowd left me disappointed, I lost a bit of interest in Vola, a band I followed and supported even before the release of their first album Inmazes. The fact that their new album, Witness, is not only a return to form, but also contains some of the best songs the band has ever written, brings all the good feelings. I’m happy for the band, and I’m happy for myself for reconnecting with this band which is so dear to my hear.

Bandcamp // Youtube // Review

La Jungle – Fall Off The Apex

May 21 // Black Basset Records

la jungle

The train never stops. If you press play on Fall Off The Apex, you are in it until the album decides to release you. There is a pulse to this album you simply cannot escape. Relentless, weird, and wonderful. Let La Jungle take over.

Bandcamp // Youtube

Trade Wind – The Day We Got What We Deserved

May 21 // Other People Records

trade wind

Trade Wind was a fascinating project right from the start. The hardcore roots it was born from are nowhere to be found; instead, the band established a sound between prog and post-rock, adding elements of dream pop to their newest album The Day We Got What We Deserved. Another addition to an already impressive discography.

Bandcamp // Youtube

Storefront Church – As We Pass

May 21 // Sargent House

storefront church

Critically overlooked, Storefront Church made an entrance with the magical As We Pass. The project was created by Lukas Frank, and channels art rock and the dreaminess of Radiohead. That Frank’s vocal performance resemble Thom Yorke‘s definitely helps with that impression. As We Pass goes way beyond that, though, but why not find that out for yourself?

Bandcamp // Youtube

FACS – Present Tense

May 21 // Trouble In Mind Records

Math/noise rock trio FACS is by far the band’s most mature record to date. Did they lose any of their drive and creativity? Fuck no. They have more to say than ever, and their unique approach to songwriting and sound makes them indistinguishable and exciting.

Bandcamp // Youtube

Epiphanic Truth – Dark Triad: Bitter Psalms To A Sordid Species

May 21 // Church Road Records

Never heard about Epiphanic Truth? Don’t worry, neither have I before this piece of art dropped. This is simply some of the best prog death I’ve heard in years, and one of the best things happening in metal in 2021. On three songs and over 40 minutes of runtime, this album will suck you in and twist you real good. Don’t hesitate to jump in.

Bandcamp // Youtube

Colleen – The Tunnel and the Clearing

May 21 // Thrill Jockey Records

The Tunnel and the Clearing starts nice. Pleasant. A beautiful, angelic voice, soft synths, relaxed beats. When you reached the end of the album, its beginning felt like an act of luring. Colleen‘s newest album is darker and stronger than its first impression, and creates an emotional turmoil throughout its fantastic soundscapes.

Bandcamp // Youtube

CHAI – Wink

May 21 // Sub Pop

You like the raw, Riot-Grrrrl energy of Otoboke Beaver and the catchy bubblegum power pop of Kero Kero Bonito? Tokyo-based quartet CHAI are a force of nature, combining punk and pop in a energetic way. Celebrate and smile to Wink.

Bandcamp // Youtube

Biig Piig – The Sky Is Bleeding

May 21 // RCA

Deciding upon one sound idea and just mastering it with phenomenal songwriting is something that always fascinates me. The Sky Is Bleeding is a shining example for this, and Biig Piig does it all with grace and elegance.


Nadja – Luminous Rot

May 21 // Southern Lord

One of the most interesting names in modern doom does it again. The phenomenon called Nadja is back with their timeless sound out of doom, drone, and ambient, once again showing what they are capable of with intense soundscapes full of color and depth.

Bandcamp // Youtube

Good Sleepy – everysinglelittlebit

May 21 // No Sleep

Can’t get enough of the sunny math rock/pop punk vibes of Tiny Moving Parts? Massachusetts-based outfit Good Sleepy captured my heart with awesome songs and irresistible never-stop-smiling vibes.


Daði Freyr – Welcome

May 21 // Samlist

Baby, I can’t wait to know
What do you think about things?
Believe me, I will always be there, so
You can tell me anything and I’ll listen

The catchiest stuff.


Body San – Reborn While Shopping

May 27 // Noumenal Loom

Sometimes, all I wanna do is get lost in sound. The invitation Body San gives on his new album Reborn While Shopping is a welcome one. As one of the most mesmerizing records in electronic music this year, no friend of compelling and chilled tunes should ignore this record.

Bandcamp // Youtube

Penelope Trappes – Penelope Three

May 28 // Houndstooth

A dark and twisted (not fantasy) adventure through the musical landscape of Penelope Trappes. The industrial undertones give this record a very comforting coldness, if that makes any sense.

Bandcamp // Youtube

Alluvial – Sarcoma

May 28 // Nuclear Blast

Who would have thought that an exciting little instrumental project by Wes Hauch and Keith Merrow would ultimately turn into one of the most exciting metal bands of the year? Alluvial‘s Sarcoma balances technicality with compelling songwriting and catchy melodies. If you’re craving something in the vein of Rivers Of Nihil‘s Where Owls Know My NameSarcoma is a must-listen!

Youtube // Review

Pledge – Haunted Visions

May 28 // ragingplanet

A sweet skramz gem with unlimited power and drive. If you like hardcore in any capacity, it’s impossible to resist this fantastic album by Portuguese outfit Pledge!

Bandcamp // Youtube

Zachary Utz – direct deposit

May 28 // sound as language

I dissolved myself in the fanstastic sound design of direct deposit. With every spin, the intriguing layers of Zachary Utz sonic world unfold a tiny bit more, inviting you to disover it again and again. A breathtaking record.

Bandcamp // Youtube

sneaky jesus – For Joseph Riddle

May 28 // Shapes Of Rhythm

The Polish jazz scene was always exciting, especially in more experimental territory.  Wroclaw-based quartet sneaky jesus released one of my favorite jazz efforts this year, dabbling in soul and hip hop while being cool as fuck all the time.

Bandcamp // Youtube

Dödsrit – Mortal Coil

May 28 // Independent

Somtimes, everything just worksDödsrit from Sweden happened to achieve just that on their newest album Mortal Coil, serving melodic yet abrasive modern black metal with a great sound and an impressive wall of sound.

Bandcamp // Youtube


black midi – Cavalcade

May 28 // Rough Trade Records

The hype is still a bit annoying, but damn, this is some next level shit. black midi definitely stepped up their game with Calvacade, even after the interesting start Schlagenheim provided. At the end, the hype paves the way for math rock and forward-thinking rock music in general for a wider audience, and I’m cool with that!

Bandcamp // Youtube

Portal – AVOW & Hagbulbia

May 28 // Profound Lore Records

Dissonant death metal monster Portal just released two record. No, you don’t have to play them simultaneaously. You can, of course, but you don’t have to. Both are pretty great, though.

Bandcamp Hagbulbia // Bandcamp Avow  // Youtube

Thanks for scrolling!

Toni Meese

Toni Meese

I know more than you.

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