It’s already May, if you can believe it. I looked at my calendar and was like, “aw shoot, it’s time for a Best O’ From Left O’!” Luckily, despite the deadline creeping up on me, it was pretty dang easy to put together a list of favorites for the month – there were a lot of really great releases this month.
As for the Best Of Left Of this month, we had a couple of podcast episodes this month where we chatted about some great new songs – just last week, Andrea and Kitzy went over their favorite tracks, and earlier in the month editor-in-chief Jenn (me!) went on the pod to talk about some of her faves. So give those a listen if you want to hear more recommendations from us!
And over on the blog, we published a really touching personal essay from Leah Isobel about her relationship with the self-titled 1979 album from The Roches. Definitely check that out if you haven’t already – and if you haven’t listened to The Roches before, treat yourself to their sweet sweet harmonies some time. We also had some great album reviews, and some of those will be linked below!
Without further ado, here are some of our favorite albums from this month (in no particular order).
Our favorite albums of April 2022
This Shame Should Not Be Mine – GGGOLDDD
This experimental release blends trip-hop and metal for a truly unique sound – think Lingua Ignota with a dash of Portishead. The first track here is haunting, with thrumming distorted synths as vocalist Milena Eva’s voice drones, “I wish I was a wild thing with a simple heart, but that is not the case.” It’s frightening, but it’s beautiful.
It should be said that this isn’t an easy listen. It’s uncomfortable by design, as it deals with the aftermath of a sexual assault and reckons with the feelings of confusion, shame, and resentment that followed. It’s a very powerful and visceral album, and it shouldn’t be ignored. Support This Shame Should Not Be Mine from GGGOLDDD on bandcamp here.
Nothing’s Ever Fine – Oceanator
Oceanator’s sophomore album, Nothing’s Ever Fine, is filled with grunge-tinged guitars and fiercely relatable lyrics, painting palpable pictures of anxiety and depression. But it’s not all doom and gloom here! Songs like “Bad Brain Daze” may describe that familiar feeling of a looming anxiety fog, but there’s an undercurrent of resilience to it.
“The Last Summer” is an upbeat, nostalgic track about “riding around with your best friends” and “feeling alive.” Ultimately, Nothing’s Ever Fine is all about the ups and downs of life, and frontwoman Elise Okusami is talented enough to express them both with equal flair. Support Nothing’s Ever Fine on bandcamp and be sure to check out our live session with Oceanator.
Dent – Signals Midwest
The fifth album from Cleveland pop-punkers Signals Midwest is a tight release that comes in at just a little bit over thirty minutes, but it packs a LOT into that running time. It’s melancholic at times, but overall it’s a very uplifting album. It acknowledges the bad, but emphasizes that there’s always a silver lining – or, more accurately, a gold in the grey. It’s a collection of songs that’ll make you feel invincible despite it all.
There’s a lot of great stuff at play here. Two standout songs are “Sure of It” (featuring Bacchae) and “Love and Commerce.” The songs reference one another, giving the record a strong throughline. Check out Dent on bandcamp, and check out Signals Midwest’s Fest set from this past summer.
Faster Than I Can Take – Jane Inc.
This release is tagged as “mutant disco” on bandcamp, and that alone was enough to pique my interest. The deep dreamed album cover was definitely an eye-catcher, too. It looks like how it sounds – chaotic, dissociative, yet vaguely familiar.
This sophomore album from Carlyn Bezic (aka Jane Inc.) is an experiment full of danceable beats, bossa nova interludes, and introspective lyrics. It’s a good one to throw on when you’re restless at 3am and need some melancholic music to dance to work out your nerves. Support it on bandcamp here.
Psychokinetic Love Songs – Hey, ily
“For Caleb Haynes, progenitor of emo-based genre-defiers Hey, ily, a follow up to 2020’s Internet Breath meant taking the project to a new level of seriousness. Now, as a five-piece, the band has both the capacity to tour beyond Haynes’ Montana-based origins and the ability to prove that their breakthrough EP was not a fluke. Psychokinetic Love Songs, though markedly different, accomplishes that goal.”
Read the rest of Rob’s review here. Listen to Psychokinetic Love Songs on bandcamp here.
Aftercare – Lucky Number You
“To scratch that retro itch while still staying grounded in the now, give Lucky Number You’s debut album Aftercare a listen. The Birmingham-based trio revels in the musical cues of the past, but takes time to acknowledge the trials of today in their songs. All of the retro new wave affectations here couch messages about anxiety for the future that we’re all painfully familiar with – but this time, at least it’s anxiety you can dance to.”
Read the rest of Jenn’s review here. You can stream Aftercare on your preferred platform via this link.
And a few of our anticipated May releases!
Conceit – GILT (May 6th)
We already hyped up the single, “Trophy Hunter,” on the blog here, so you know we’re excited for this GILT EP. Known for their incredible lyricism, driving hooks, and post-hardcore sound, GILT have been steadily making a name for themselves in the scene. They are one to watch, for sure.
The EP boasts a ton of features, including Shaolin G, Kind Eyes, Syd Dolezal (Doll Skin), Carson Pace (Callous Daoboys), and Nat Lacuna (The Holy Ghost Tabernacle Choir).
Learning To Be Happy – Kayleigh Goldsworthy (May 6th)
Philadelphia-based singer Kayleigh Goldsworthy’s second LP, Learning to Be Happy, is sure to be the serotonin boost the world needs right now. In a statement, Goldsworthy expressed that she hopes these songs will help others get in touch with themselves. “It’s your little zen den,” she says. “I want you to feel happy.”
The singles out now are delightful blends of pop-rock and folk, and it’s a release you won’t want to miss. Check out the live session we did with Kayleigh last year, and click here for pre-order info for the new album.
The Loser – Gospel (May 13th)
Screamo legends Gospel are returning with a new album this month – their first in 15 years. If you haven’t heard their 2005 debut, The Moon Is A Dead World, take a listen and you’ll understand exactly why their return is such a big deal. The debut was innovative and blended various genres, and it sounds like The Loser is about to be equally exciting.
On the lead single, “SRO,” Kurt Ballou of Converge is playing saxophone (Ballou also recorded the album). This very well could be one of the best screamo releases of the year, so if you’re a fan of the genre, you won’t want to miss this.
That’s just a small preview of May, but no worries – we’ll be covering more great new releases as they come out, so keep an eye out! We hope you find some new jams here, and if we missed any great releases or you know of any upcoming stuff from May, drop us a line via the contact page or message us on Twitter!