Best Albums to Stream Now: Jay-Z, Calvin Harris and more - Rolling Stone
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10 New Albums to Stream Now: Rolling Stone Editors’ Picks

Jay-Z’s ‘4:44,’ a Beach Boys alternate takes collection and more albums you can stream right now

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You can stream new albums from Calvin Harris and Jay-Z and a collection of Beach Boys alternate takes.

Michael Ochs Archives/Getty, George Pimentel/WireImage/Getty, Conor McDonnell

Jay-Z, 4:44
Brooklyn’s reigning mogul drops his ego on an album that finds him questioning himself (and apologizing to his wife) while taking a cocked-eyebrow view of the world surrounding him.
Read Our Guide: Jay-Z’s 4:44: A Track-by-Track Guide
Hear: Tidal

The Beach Boys, 1967 – Sunshine Tomorrow
The latest release from the psych-surf legends’ vaults is a two-disc set with alternate takes from their 1967 albums Smiley Smile and Wild Honey, as well as a slew of live tracks that includes the once-shelved Lei’d In Hawaii.
Hear: Amazon Music Unlimited | SoundCloud Go | Spotify | Tidal

Calvin Harris, Funk Wav Bounces Vol. 1
Album Number Five from the Australian super-producer has a guest list that mirrors the charts – Ariana Grande, Migos, Frank Ocean, Future and Nicki Minaj are just a few of the megastars who drop by – and big beats tailor-made for a hot summer night.
Hear: Amazon Music Unlimited | Apple Music | SoundCloud Go | Spotify | Tidal

Beach House, B-Sides and Rarities
Fitting into this season’s vault-purging bounty (see the Purple Rain and OK Computer reissues), Baltimore’s dream-pop magicians offer up every previous non-LP studio track they’ve made – 14 in all. The result, unsurprisingly, is another beautifully sculpted, Fifties-goths-in-amber Beach House LP. Which isn’t to say there aren’t surprises like the snarling guitar that transforms the alternate single version of Teen Dream‘s wistful “Used to Be” into something much fiercer. And “Rain in Numbers,” recorded just weeks after the band formed, is the sound of a sound being born. Will Hermes
Hear: Amazon Music Unlimited | Apple Music | Bandcamp | SoundCloud Go | Spotify | Tidal

Kacy Hill, Like a Woman
The debut from this Kanye West protégé stands alone in pop’s crowded field: Hill’s agile soprano has Ariana Grande’s airiness and the unbridled power of the Cranberries’ Dolores O’Riordan, and her musical aesthetic combines arena-rock bombast, razor-sharp lyrics and 21st-century minimalism in a way that pays little attention to notions of genre. The DJ Mustard-produced title track (which is absent of an opening “Mustard on the beat, ho” because Hill didn’t want that phrase to open a song about womanhood) is a slip-slide lament anchored by snaps and the occasional piano plink; “Hard to Love” is a plea for reconciliation cloaked in an open-road anthem. The slow-building piano ballad “Clarity” simultaneously recalls Broadcast’s blips, Tori Amos’ knife-edge lyrics and the fist-raising vocal prowess that you’d glimpse when things on American Idol turned serious. Maura Johnston
Hear: Amazon Music Unlimited | Apple Music | SoundCloud Go | Spotify | Tidal

Public Enemy, Nothing Is Quick in the Desert
The politically charged hip-hop collective celebrates their 30th anniversary with a free album packed with incendiary rhymes.
Hear: Bandcamp

Raymond Scott, Three Willow Park: Electronic Music From Inner Space, 1961-1971
Raymond Scott is best known for the quirked-out arrangements that provided music for Bugs, Daffy, Ren, Stimpy and more. As an early pioneer in electronic music, his music and experiments for primitive electronics are no less playful. The 61 sound effects, bubbles, gurgles, poots and twinkles ­– it’s unknown if they were experiments, compositions or works in progress – on this two-disc collection are mostly performed on home-brewed noisemakers like the Electronium, with many tracks bearing names like “Idea #35,” “Nice Sound #3” and “The Sound of Money Being Wasted.” It is raw, elemental and experimental electronic music, but Scott’s cheery, chirpy, wacky energy ensures this historical document of unearthed reels is goofy fun. Christopher R. Weingarten
Hear: Apple Music | Spotify | Tidal

Various Artists, Pop Makossa: The Invasive Dance Beat of Cameroon 1976-1984
American pop star Michael Jackson famously tweaked the “ma-mako, ma-ma-sa, mako-makossa” from Cameroonian saxophonist Manu Dibango’s proto-disco funk bomb “Soul Makossa” around 1982. This collection shows what was happening at the other end of that conversation: the dizzying music that emerged in the Fifties was embracing the burbling basslines of American disco and the sounds of new synth technology. Bill Loko’s “Nen Lambo” sounds ready for the Sugar Hill Gang to rap over it; and Eko’s lively “M’ongele M’am,” which the composer says was a “disco sensation,” recalls the pastiche that was New York’s salsa movement. Christopher R. Weingarten
Hear: Bandcamp | Spotify | Tidal

Lapalux, Ruinism
Lapalux, a.k.a. U.K. electronic artist Stuart Howard, begins his latest with swirls of orchestral strings that dissolve into synth swooshes and sibilant sylphs. It’s a step beyond his usual R&B abstractions – less James Blake than Burial – but with the restlessness of a stoner determined to rise off the couch. The numerous guest vocalists are obscured in amoebic mixes; on “4EVA,” with Talvi of Toronto’s Prince Innocence, each verse, and sometimes each word, assumes a new digital tone, pitch, style and harmony. It’s a pop fever dream, like much of the set, which has a formlessness that builds remarkable drama. Will Hermes
Hear: Apple Music | Bandcamp | Spotify | Tidal

Au.Ra, Cultivations
This cross-continental duo’s second album pairs gauzy guitars with restless loops. The fuzzed-out droop of “Nowhere” resembles a 7-inch by New Zealand indie rockers the Clean played at 33; the gentle pulse of “I Feel You” is accompanied by sparkling synths and a low-end-scraping bassline; and the soaring guitar lines of “Black Hole” add brightness to its blown-out churn. The two-track “Above the Triangle” suite is a longing goodbye and its emotional hangover, with Part II’s gloomy acoustic guitars and swirling echo soaking the listener in sulking. A record made for those rainy days when grey skies turn ordinary greenery into eye-popping attractions. Maura Johnston
Hear: Amazon Music Unlimited | Apple Music | Bandcamp | SoundCloud Go | Spotify | Tidal


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