Phoenix, "Long Distance Call"
The alchemy on this song of the durms and that slow bleat on the keyboard is kind of magical. This entire album is chock full of fun pop rock.
Ruder Than You, "Misskaculation"
Does it get cornier than this? It does, once I tell you that this album is called Horny For Ska.
Little Otis, "Baby I Need You"
Early Motown here, from 1962. Pretty by-the-numbers, but pleasant enough. This was actually the B-side, so it makes sense that it's not totally a barn burner.
Thomas Jefferson Slave Apartments, "My Mysterious Death (Turn It Up)"
I've probably said this every time they've come up (I'll be damned if I'm going to check), but this is such a good band name for a punk band. The music itself is, well, it's punk. It's fine.
Brutus are a metal band from Belgium that are kind of hard to categorize. There are elements of prog metal here and there, a little bit of of hardcore - it's good that there's a mix. When you add in the outstanding vocals of Stefanie Mannaerts, they were a fun discovery for me last year.