Editor’s Note: Do you think we “missed” an album this week? Click here.

Each month, we always seem to come to the same conclusion when it comes to our Editors’ Picks column: Friday release days open the floodgates and unleash a seemingly endless stream of quality new music. But while some of our Editors and Contributors sit down gleefully each week to dive into this newly stocked treasure trove, others find themselves drawing a blank at the end of the month due to the breakneck pace needed to keep up to date with what’s been released. Which brings us to this Heavy Blog PSA: a weekly roundup of new albums which pares down the week’s releases to only our highest recommendations. Here you’ll find full album/single streams, pre-order links and, most importantly, a collection of albums that could very well earn a spot on your year-end list. Enjoy!

Top Picks

Naia Izumi – A Residency in the Los Angeles Area (math rock, neo-soul)

Math rock is a genre that’s been pretty exhausted and stretched to its limits of possibilities. It’s had various waves, branches and converging influences over the years, such as emo, post-rock, noise rock, and jazz, but even these often feel well tread. In other words, it’s not so often we see a truly unique sound stand out in the genre these days.

If you’ve been in the know, you may have heard of the name Naia Izumi from over the years. The street-performer turned NPR Tiny Desk star has been turning heads since their debut EP back in 2016, Soft Spoken Woman, but has finally returned with their debut full-length, the aptly titled A Residency in the Los Angeles Area. 

From the three singles released so far, the new LP shows them continuing their blend of groovy soul with virtuosic math rock. Everything about this is just smooth. The dazzling guitar solos, funky riffs and percussion and Naia’s powerful voice. “Natural Disaster” has some extremely fun rhythmic parts and an ear-worm of a chorus. Where “Six Inch Stilletos” brings a bit of a smokier lounge-pop vibe, yet the math rock is still present in the guitar playing. Some truly fresh stuff; Naia Izumi deserves to blow the hell up, in not only the math rock scene, but the greater music scene in general.

See also: Underdark – Our Bodies Burned Bright On Re-Entry (post-black metal); and Lantlôs – Wildhund (alt-metal, post-metal) 

Trent Bos

Best of the Rest

A Sea of Dead Trees – Garmonbozia (post-rock, blackgaze) 

Acid Magus – Wyrd Sister (heavy psych, stoner rock)

Agrypnie – Metamorphosis (post-black metal) 

Anakim – The Elysian Void (modern death metal)

Arid – Arid (death metal, blackened crust)

Brilliant Coldness – The Ultimate Dream. Plan B: Disposal Of Humanity (progressive death metal, tech death)

Cainhurst – Dark Have Been My Dreams of Late (black metal)

Chunk! No, Captain Chunk! – Gone Are The Good Days (alt-rock, easycore) 

Churchburn – Genocidal Rite (sludge, doom)

Digimortal – Гравитация (melodic industrial metal)

Eastern High – Halo (progressive metal)

The Effens – Eventually (indie rock, alt-rock)

Expunged – Into Never Shall (death metal, OSDM)

Bill Fisher – Hallucinations of a Higher Truth (blues rock, gospel) 

The Five Hundred – A World On Fire (melodic metalcore)

Grieving – Songs for the Weary (stoner-doom)

Groza – The Redemptive End (post-black metal)

Jenny Haniver – Jenny Haniver (post-rock, post-punk)

Hexorcist – Evil Reaping Death (death metal)

Ingested – The Surreption II (brutal death metal, slam)

The Kings of Frog Island – VII (stoner rock, heavy rock)

King Woman – Celestial Blues (stoner-doom, blues metal)

KNOW//SUFFER – The Great Dying (metallic hardcore, beatdown)

Lakes – Start Again (math pop, indie rock)

Lantlôs – Wildhund (alt-metal, post-metal)

Llyr – Biome (ambient techno, IDM)

Loch Vostok – Opus Ferox – The Great Escape (progressive metal)

Lotus Thrones – Lovers in Wartime (post-punk, dark ambient)

Low Roar – Maybe Tomorrow (indie folk, dream pop)

Moon Reaper – Descent (progressive death-doom)

Gabe ’Nandez – Seven (abstract hip-hop, boom bap)

Nightpröwler – Rock N’ Roll Uproaring Blasphemy (blackened thrash)

Praise the Plague – The Obsidian Gate (blackened death metal, death-doom)

Prince – Welcome 2 America (neo-soul, pop)

prisms – Hot Under the Collar (alt-rock, emo)

Profane Desecration – Abysmal Stillness (blackened tech death)

Isaiah Rashad – The House Is Burning (southern hip-hop, conscious hip-hop)

Sleep Moscow – Of The Sun (progressive rock)

Son Volt – Electro Melodier (alt-country)

Sonny & The Sunsets – New Day With New Possibilities (indie pop, garage rock)

Spiral – The Madman in the Forest (heavy psych, progressive rock)

Stahv – Cold Plunge (doomgaze, synth)

Tangents – Timeslips & Chimeras (jazz fusion, post-rock)

Time and Pressure – Halfway Down (hardcore, melodic hardcore)

Tombstoner – Victims of Vile Torture (death metal)

Tragedy – Disco Balls to the Wall (disco metal)

Trail of Blood – EP (blackened death metal) 

TRAITRS – The Sick, Tired and Ill (darkwave, post-punk)

Underdark – Our Bodies Burned Bright On Re-Entry (post-black metal)

Vial – Loudmouth (punk, indie rock)

Voices – An Audience of Mannequins (avant-garde death metal) 

The Voynich Code – Post Mortem (progressive deathcore, death metal)

Wall – Vol. 2 (instrumental sludge)

When Darkness Falls – What We Leave Behind (melodic melodeath)

W O L F C L U B – Just Drive (Part 2) (synthpop, synthwave)

Xenochrist Decimation – Deathless Eminence (death metal)

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