The 10 Albums We’re Most Excited About in July

Featuring Momma, black midi, JayWood and more

Music Lists New Albums
The 10 Albums We’re Most Excited About in July

Here at 2022’s halfway point, we look around the music world and see an embarrassment of riches. Meanwhile, we look around the actual world and see chaos—making it all the more impressive that these artists have found such inspiration amid an indisputably challenging time to be alive. Having taken stock of June’s best albums, Paste Music’s gaze now turns to July, another summer month as sweltering as it is promising for new releases. Get excited about our most-anticipated albums of the month below.

July 1

Momma: Household Name

Polyvinyl Record Co.

Like the American answer to Wet Leg, here come Momma to make themselves a Household Name. The Brooklyn-based band, led by founding vocalist/guitarist duo Etta Friedman and Allegra Weingarten, have already shared stages with those buzzy British peers, and their hook-laden indie-rock sounds are equally irresistible. In a way, Household Name invites this kind of comparison: Produced by Momma multi-instrumentalist Aron Kobayashi Ritch and mastered by Grammy-winning engineer Emily Lazar (The Killers, Maggie Rogers), the album is structured to reflect “the rise and fall of the rock star,” as the band step into the arena and assert their burgeoning position as part of the genre’s history. They emulate The Breeders and Nirvana, shout out Pavement on the exhilarating “Speeding 72,” and nod to Liz Phair love song “Nashville” on “Lucky,” revealing themselves as adept-beyond-their-years students of rock ‘n’ roll, a la Horsegirl. Get used to hearing Momma’s Household Name. —Scott Russell

Moor Mother: Jazz Codes

ANTI- Records

Camae Ayewa contains multitudes—she is a composer, poet, visual artist and University of Southern California music professor; a leader of the Black Quantum Futurism collective; a prolific collaborator via her Irreversible Entanglements, 700 Bliss and moor jewelry projects; and the singer and songwriter known as Moor Mother. On Jazz Codes, her second LP for ANTI- and the companion to 2021’s acclaimed Black Encyclopedia of the Air, Ayewa’s prolificacy continues, but its her poetic gifts that truly come to the forefront. A hypnotic haze of jazz, soul, hip-hop and blues, Jazz Codes is an abundant collection of dynamic collaborations and celestial, spoken-word interludes alike, with Ayewa’s boundless vision as its guiding hand. Moor Mother creates a Black utopia with the beauty and scope to blot out our irrevocably broken reality, rooting her vision in this world only so as to better transcend it in her own. —Scott Russell

More notable July 1 releases: Burna Boy: Love, Damani, Camp Trash: The Long Way, The Slow Way, Guided by Voices: Tremblers and Goggles by Rank, Lotic: Sparkling Water EP, Municipal Waste: Electrified Brain, Naima Bock: Giant Palm, Naomi Alligator: Double Knot, Neighbor Lady: For The Birds, Paolo Nutini: Last Night in the Bittersweet, Tedeschi Trucks Band: I Am The Moon: II. Ascension, Various Artists: Minions: The Rise of Gru (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)

July 8

Viagra Boys: Cave World


Viagra Boys are undeniably charismatic, buffed out with a bit of stereotypical European sleaze. A year after the explosive Welfare Jazz, the Stockholm punk rockers offer another dose of their hypnotically groovy chaos on Cave World. Frontman Sebastian Murphy’s exaggerated vibrato evokes a drunken Elvis impression, which is sometimes traded for melancholic new wave talk-singing. Horns blare in and out, framing distorted guitars and thick rhythm sections. They delicately play the game of satire and seriousness, as Murphy takes on the roles of a paranoid anti-vax activist, a defensive thief and omnipresent narrator for humanity’s strangest inhabitants. Viagra Boys poke fun at conspiracy theorists, turning their beliefs into cartoonish funky romps. If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em (to write some darkly funny songs). —Jade Gomez

More notable July 8 releases: Alice Cohen: Moonrising, Delicate Steve: After Hours, Journey: Freedom, Katy J Pearson: Sound of the Morning, Laura Veirs: Found Light, Megadeth: The Sick, The Dying, and The Dead, Metric: Formentera, Miki Ratsula: made for them EP, Mush: Down Tools, Neil Young: Toast, NoSo: Stay Proud of Me, PACKS: WOAH EP, Rae Morris: Rachel@Fairyland, Spiral Stairs: Medley Attack!!, Wet: Pink Room EP

July 15

black midi: Hellfire

Rough Trade Records

When a band explodes out of the underground the way black midi did back in 2019, it can feel like being sucker-punched—you wonder where the impact came from, and how you could’ve seen it coming sooner. The truth is, there’s no seeing this band coming (never has been), even now, ahead of their third album. black midi’s thunderous and mercurial avant-prog epics are designed to elude easy understanding, like the U.K. trio are tying a Gordian knot in each track. They wrote Hellfire in the immediate aftermath of 2021’s Cavalcade, combining their sophomore album’s surprisingly tender “melodic and harmonic elements” with the “brutality and intensity” of their debut album Schlagenheim, and relaying their infernal narratives from a new, first-person perspective. black midi are far outnumbered by the shadowy characters they create on Hellfire—from the album’s ring announcer-esque emcee, Radio Rahim, to Satan himself—their creative universe ever-expanding under the bright lights of unbridled imagination. Time may well reveal Hellfire to be the band’s best album—it is unquestionably their most album. —Scott Russell

JayWood: Slingshot

Captured Tracks

Jeremy Haywood-Smith knows better than most that, when faced with an uncertain future, we can always find answers in the past. That principle guided the making of not only his acclaimed 2021 EP Some Days—a reimagined set of songs he originally wrote and self-recorded in 2015—but also his forthcoming full-length Captured Tracks debut. “The idea of looking back to go forward became a really big thing for me—hence the title, Slingshot,” the Winnipeg singer/songwriter and producer explains of his latest in press materials. His attempts to move forward after losing his mother in 2019, only for the pandemic, George Floyd protests and other crises to follow in 2020, find Haywood-Smith leafing through the pages of his own personal history, drawing on his experiences as a Black man born and raised in the predominantly white Manitoba province to create something that resonates far beyond those borders. JayWood draws back his Slingshot and out explodes not only the guitar-driven psych-pop of Some Days, but also an entire kaleidoscope of synth-funk, hip-hop and neo-soul sounds. Slingshot is a prayer for a brighter future—and proof that, for Haywood-Smith’s music, one has already arrived. —Scott Russell

Steve Lacy: Gemini Rights

RCA Records

Steve Lacy first gained recognition as one of the main producers on The Internet’s acclaimed third album Ego Death. Lacy is a prodigy in every sense of the word, producing tracks only on an iPhone and working with some of the biggest names in music before graduating high school. Three years on from his solo debut Apollo XXI, Lacy expands on his guitar-forward palette for Gemini Rights, bringing in layers upon layers of vocal harmonies, warbled basslines and synths. Much like his debut, Lacy refuses to settle down with one specific sound, priding himself on being born in an era where everyone is stylistically omnivorous. Each track is full of Lacy’s dry, millennial wit and coated in his tender falsetto as he pays homage to the tender ballads of Stevie Wonder with the snark of Thundercat. On Gemini Rights, Lacy is ready to take his rightful place as one of his generation’s most innovative figures. —Jade Gomez

More notable July 15 releases: …And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead: XI: Bleed Here Now, The A’s: Fruit, beabadoobee: Beatopia, Belief: Belief, Ben Shemie: Desiderata, Elf Power: Artificial Countrysides, Goon: Hour of Green Evening, Gordi: Inhuman EP, Interpol: The Other Side of Make-Believe, Launder: Happening, Lizzo: Special, Mabel: About Last Night…, Nightlands: Moonshine, Noah Cyrus: The Hardest Part, Rachel Bobbitt: The Ceiling Could Collapse EP, Superorganism: World Wide Pop

July 22

Pool Kids: Pool Kids

Skeletal Lightning

Tallahassee, Florida, rockers Pool Kids are poised for a wave-making return via their self-titled second album, the follow-up to 2018’s acclaimed Music to Practice Safe Sex to. Founding vocalist/multi-instrumentalist Christine Goodwyne and drummer Caden Clinton, who wrote the band’s debut LP in its entirety, are now joined by bassist Nicolette Alvarez and guitarist Andy Anaya, further focusing and amplifying their vision as a four-piece. Goodwyne’s always relatable, often funny lyricism and expressive vocals are the soft center of Pool Kids’ sound, surrounded by layers of dynamic math-rock and guitar pop that are coolly precise, yet never sterile or alienating. Pool Kids welcomes you in and empowers you to move towards emotional catharsis, especially on standouts like “That’s Physics, Baby” and “I Hope You’re Right,” which are practically aglow with sonic polish and unpretentious humanity. —Scott Russell

More notable July 22 releases: Anthony Green: Boom, Beach Bunny: Emotional Creature, Ben Harper: Bloodline Maintenance, Cuco: Fantasy Gateway, Dawes: Misadventures of Doomscroller, Jack White: Entering Heaven Alive, Joe Pug: Nation of Heat | Revisited, ODESZA: The Last Goodbye, RZA: RZA Presents: Bobby Digital and The Pit of Snakes, The Sadies: Colder Streams, Sam Prekop & John McEntire: Sons Of, She & Him: Melt Away: A Tribute To Brian Wilson, Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs: When the Lights Go, Ty Segall: Hello, Hi, ZZ Top: Raw

July 29

Beyoncé: Renaissance

Parkwood Entertainment/Columbia Records

There’s no other way to say that Beyoncé is back! Six years after Lemonade, her last solo album, Tidal confirmed her forthcoming album, Renaissance, will be arriving on July 29. Not much more information has been given except pre-saves showing 16 untitled tracks. Both the original Tidal graphic and her official website refer to an “act i.” It is unclear if the album itself is the first act or if there is more music on the way. If the summery first single “BREAK MY SOUL” is any indication, the singer will explore dance and house music on Renaissance, which is just what we need this summer. In any case, we’re just happy to have new Beyoncé. —Jade Gomez

Chat Pile: God’s Country

The Flenser

If the title God’s Country isn’t enough to get the point across, Chat Pile are ready to remind you of the harrowing depths of the human condition. The Oklahoma City sludge-rockers are as raw and visceral as ever on their full-length debut, drawing upon the spine-chilling wails of The Jesus Lizard’s David Yow and the muddy guitar chugs of grunge heroes TAD. It’s a nightmarish affair, whether vocalist Raygun Busch is screaming, “All the blood! And the fuckin’ sound, man!” on “Slaughterhouse,” or the band is sampling the distant tornado sirens from their hometown on “Why.” Chat Pile take you by the neck and focus your attention on the desolation of existence, covered in a nihilistic Midwestern haze. —Jade Gomez

Florist: Florist

Double Double Whammy

Though this will be Florist’s fourth full-length record, the Brooklyn-based band have only now found it fitting to bestow the honor of calling it their self-titled. They recorded their new album amidst a rainy heatwave in June 2019 when the band rented a house in the Hudson Valley to live and work together. The result is a 19-track offering that reflects not just band leader Emily Sprague’s sentimental songwriting, but also the introspection and nostalgia that guided their collaborative process. The broad field recordings laced throughout the record lend an ambient undertone to their wispy indie-folk, giving Florist space to sprawl out. Their first full-band album since 2017, it feels like the summit of their decade-long journey that looks fondly at both where they came from and who they aspire to be. —Samantha Sullivan

More notable July 29 releases: Amanda Shires: Take It Like a Man, Beach Rats: Rat Beat, Emily Yacina: All The Things, Friendship: Love The Stranger, Josh Rouse: Going Places, King Princess: Hold On Baby, Maggie Rogers: Surrender, Matt Nathanson: Boston Accent, Of Montreal: Freewave Lucifer fck, Tallies: Patina, Wombo: Fairy Rust

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