Slowdive, Speedy Ortiz, Jeff Rosenstock, and More: New Music List for September 2023
Which are the best new releases to watch out for in the month of September 2023? Here are the hottest new records that are dropping this month! From Slowdive to Jeff Rosenstock, and more! Check out the full list below…
Slowdive: Everything Is Alive [Dead Oceans]
For their epic, self-titled comeback album six years ago, Slowdive got back together. With the release of their fifth album, the shoegaze pioneers—led by singer-guitarists Rachel Goswell and Neil Halstead—are back. Halstead had intended to release a more basic album centred around modular synthesisers, but as Everything Is Alive took shape, their signature scratched guitars and reverb tunnels crept back into the mix along with pop songs like “Kisses.” It wouldn’t feel appropriate to produce a genuinely gloomy record right now, Halstead stated in promotional materials. “The album is quite eclectic emotionally, but it does feel hopeful,” he added. Slowdive fans, this is not the time to keep calm!
Speedy Ortiz: Rabbit Rabbit [Wax Nine]
Speedy Ortiz’s fourth album, Rabbit Rabbit, which is the follow-up to 2018’s Twerp Verse, has another collection of sly tunes and sharp, snappy lyrics. While “Ranch vs. Ranch” tells the backstory of a cinematic hero, the band’s single “You S02” mocks union-busters and reformed punks, reflecting their involvement in social groups on the side. “As I was channelling scenes and sentiments from decades past, I wanted to honour the bands I loved when I first learned guitar, ones that taught me to get lost in the possibilities of this instrument,” Sadie Dupuis said in a press conference, referring to touchstones like post-hardcore, the Palm Desert scene, and alternative metal.
Jeff Rosenstock: Hellmode [Polyvinyl]
Jeff Rosenstock is now more popular than ever after succeeding as the leading torchbearer of punk in his day. In press materials, he also added, “It’s weird feeling success at the worst possible time, while the world falls apart.” Now that everything is on fire, the things I’ve been unknowingly striving towards for the past 20 years have materialised. He thus created Hellmode, which was hailed as his most significant, most apocalyptic, but also poppiest record to date. It’s strange, he remarked; “it doesn’t feel like a sellout move. I feel like in 2023, you can make an openly poppy punk song and it’s probably not gonna be on the radio anyhow. We were liberated to create something that just kicks as hard as we could.“
Smoke DZA said he manifested this collaborative project with his longtime inspiration Flying Lotus before he knew it was possible. The pair’s collaborative history dates back to 2014 track “Just My Thoughts” and the 2016 Bernie Sanders endorsement “Outside My Mind | 4 -19 – 2026 | Petty Murphy.” Flying Objects, their first extended project together, was led by “Drug Trade,” in which the New York rapper spars with the Roots’ Black Thought. It also includes the Estelle-featuring “Harlem World 97.”
Brian Eno: Top Boy (Score From the Original Series) [Netflix Music]
For the first time (with the exception of two tracks that feature on Eno’s Film Music 1976 – 2020), Brian Eno is releasing his Top Boy score as the British crime thriller is ready to return to Netflix for its final season. Eno, who wrote the season’s theme song and other original music, thanked the directors for giving him the freedom to do what he wanted. “If you’d been scoring it in the conventional Hollywood way, the temptation would be to up the excitement factor, up the danger factor, all the time,” he said in publicity materials. “Top Boy, though, is truly about kids who are in a terrible circumstance. I thus looked into the kids’ inner lives.
Midwxst: E3 [Geffen]
Indiana upstart Midwxst is releasing his debut studio album, E3, after making dives into rage rap, emo, and pure pop on previous EPs and getting his start in the hyperpop movement. Together with “Slide Den” colleague Sophie Grey, he executive produced his record. The title is a play on Midwxst’s childhood moniker. The 20-year-old was given the name Edgar Nathaniel Sarratt III at birth. In a recent interview, he said, “I think that E3 is a character that everybody is going to relate to because he fucks up, and every good human who has flaws and makes mistakes and goes through things that they don’t tell their friends or other people will be able to relate to the music.”
Sprain: The Lamb as Effigy [The Flenser]
Sprain’s second album for beloved San Francisco label The Flenser is titled, in full, The Lamb as Effigy or Three Hundred and Fifty XOXOXOS for a Spark Union With My Darling Divine. The Los Angeles group has spent the last few years evolving from minimalist slowcore toward this two-hour record’s sprawling, noisy rock compositions, texturized by howls, croons, and occasionally absurdist spoken word.
Tha Retail Simps: Live on Cool Street [Total Punk]
Last year, Montreal’s lo-fi garage rock party band Retail Simps made a splash with their debut album on Total Punk Records, Reverberant Scratch: 9 Shots in the Dark. For that album, the band’s name was stylized Tha Retail Simps and was largely made by a three-person lineup in a basement studio. As Live on Cool Street’s album art implies, their latest—now credited to Theee Retail Simps—is the work of what’s grown to be a larger live band lineup. The band’s Joe Chamandy said they attempted to “widen the scope” of their sound this time around.
Slow synthwave of Slowdive or the speedy drum beats of a punk record like the one above. Our lists have something for every playlist.