Every now and then we all feel like our standard playlists and songs are becoming stale, and we need our music to be invigorated. Typically, it turns into a scavenger hunt through the Top 100, or some other list of Best New Albums – but why don’t we take a peek back at some older albums more often? There are always going to be some unknown gems that didn’t hit you big the year they came out, so here’s a list of some pre-2018 albums you may not have heard the first time.
1. Liza Anne – Two (2015)
My fave track: “Lost”
This dreamy, romantic album is full of longing, mournful vocals that leave your heart in a soft spot. Each track follows the next with another heartfelt, gentle lullaby. The perfect album to lay in bed during a thunderstorm, or fall asleep listening to. 3 years has done nothing but create this testament to the beauty of coffee shop tunes.
2. Tyler, the Creator – Flower Boy (2017)
My fave track: “I Ain’t Got Time”
You may know Tyler, the Creator from the rap group Odd Future, who hit it big around 2010, and stuck in the hearts and minds of pre-teen and adolescent boys for their filthy and surreal music. However, Tyler takes a step away from this previously established legacy in his album Flower Boy. The anger that is present in so much of his earlier albums is still palpable, but is partnered with reflective lyrics that touch on loneliness, self-doubt, and the insecurity of young adulthood. If you haven’t given Tyler, The Creator a shot yet, this is absolutely the album to listen to.
3. Anderson .Paak – Malibu (2016)
My fave track: “Come Down”
Not to be confused with Miley Cyrus’ 2017 single, Malibu is the previous year’s album from Anderson .Paak, the reigning king of funk. This California-centric album evokes the feeling of biking down a beach-side road in the 90s (even if you never did that…). It’s fun, airy, with a definite hint of sexy. Without a doubt, Anderson .Paak produces undeniable hits, and Malibu deserves not only a listen from you, but an adoration.
4. Paramore – After Laughter (2017)
My fave track: “Caught In The Middle”
Your favorite emo band from middle school is back, but they’ve grown up?? After Laughter is an exploration of the hell that is young adulthood masked in pop-y synth and Hayley Williams’ breath-taking vocals. “Caught In The Middle” is the perfect example of how being too young to be old but too old to be young feels – the future is terrifying, but the past is too horrible to look back at. Watching and listening to Paramore grow up with us is one of many reasons I can never get enough of them.
Everyone needs a musical face lift every now and then, but sometimes in with the old is way better than in with the new. Taking a look through the past couple of years will lend itself to new gems that you didn’t necessarily get wind of at the time – whether you look back at what a newly discovered artist has done before, or you find a brand new artist you’ve never heard of, searching through the musical archives could bring you to your newfound fave.