The Must-Have Albums of Spring

By Jim LaVecchio

With spring in full bloom, everyone has put the shovels away, and we won’t have to see another North Face fleece jacket until next season… thank God! Spring has indeed sprung, and several artists are blooming on the charts. Without a doubt, these albums will shake you out of your Seasonal Affective Disorder, and make you want to move. In no time, you’ll be driving with the windows down, blasting their latest singles, and lip-syncing without a care.

Honorable Mention: Lykke Li’s Wounded Rhymes

Some of you, perhaps most, are probably unfamiliar with the Swedish Pop wonder Lykke Li, but her March release is undoubtedly one of the most underappreciated albums of spring.

If you happen to be a Gleek, you’ may have heard Li’s “I Follow Rivers” sung by Tina Cohen-Chang who happened to be getting heckled at the time. Victoria’s Secret also tapped Li for use of the track “Get Some” in a new TV advertisement, declaring that she’s a “prostitute, you gon get some”.

Li’s anger at the world is clear, beginning with the album’s first track “Youth Knows No Pain” whose sinister sound recalls 60s pop rock. Ending the ten-selection album is “Jerome”, a tormented track about a past lover with dark lyrics like “I’m screaming at nothing.” Li creates a dramatic scene of young woman, crazed in her room, alone, writhing.

Reaching into the top 40 of the Billboard 200, Wounded Rhymes establishes Lykke Li as an artist on the rise, and someone to continue watching in the near future. To watch Lykke Li’s dynamic MTV’s Unplugged performance, click here.

Runner-Up: Britney Spears’ Femme Fatale

I always worry for Britney. How’s she doing? How are the kid’s? Is she still under her father’s custody? Questions I think “normal” people like me ask themselves on a daily basis. One question everyone is asking: Does the pop princess still have it in her? The answer is short and sweet. Yes!

Femme Fatale is Britney’s seventh studio album, featuring a collection of nonstop, bass thumping, club hits produced by all-star musical architects Max Martin and Dr. Luke.

The album simply makes you want to move, including its first two singles, which have already hit the airwaves. Upon its debut, “Hold It Against Me” appeared atop the charts around the world. The fist-pumping club anthem “Til the World Ends” was released a short time later after leaking online. Cowritten by pop-sensation Ke$ha and the album’s producers, the track ‘s irresistible, uptempo beat and a chanting chorus hypnotizes listeners.

What continues to be clear is Britney’s eye for the bad boy. Remember K-Fed? A series of tracks describe her musings with both strangers and her regular boy-toys, including “How I Roll” and “Trouble for Me”, both potential singles.

With an electropop beat and innuendo laden lyrics that scream Britney, Femme Fatale is sure to be blasting speakers as Spears rolls out her summer tour in June. Tickets for the August 8th show at the TD BankNorth Garden will be on sale May 7.

For more information or to purchase tickets, click here. To preview or purchase Femme Fatale on iTunes, click here.

This Month’s Must-Have Album: Adele 21

Written during the progression of a failed relationship while twenty-one, Adele has undoubtedly penned some of the most emotionally raw lyrics of recent memory in 21. The British songstress bares it all, and is clearly the must-have  with her sophomore album, a response to song-by-song to a roller coaster ride of a relationship response to her then boyfriend on her sophomore album.

Quickly, Adele gets right into the thick of things with the thunderous tracks “Rolling in the Deep” and “Rumour Has It”, both sounding like she’s ready for a good ole’ fashion pub fight. Things settle down with the woulda-coulda-shoulda track “Turning Tables”, a recent Glee cover done by everyone’s favorite substitue, Holly Holliday (Gwyneth Paltrow).  All of this coming to a perfect ending with a heart wrenching masterpiece, “Somebody Like You”. Adele whole heartedly sings “nevermind, I’ll find somebody like you” wishing her ex “nothing but the best”. With staying power on the charts, and beating out Madonna’s “The Immaculate Collection” for most consecutive weeks by a solo female artist, all we can do is hope that Adele finds a new man to see what new feelings and songs arise out of it.

To watch a preview or purchase Adele’s explosive video for her hit single “Rolling in the Deep”, click here.

Jim LaVecchio is a lifelong resident of Everett, MA. He is an educator in Lynn, MA where he teaches Spanish and runs a school library. When he’s not working, Jim enjoys reading, writing, any & all entertainment, and keeping active through yoga. He can be followed on Twitter at @JimLaVecchio.

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