Maintaining a healthy music library can be tricky, and the dent it makes in your wallet doesn’t help. Amazon feels your hunger pangs, and offers a select 500 digital albums for $5. Here are 10 handpicked albums that made the cut for April. Save that extra change for Record Store Day on April 21.
Cloud Nothings – Attack on Memory
Attack on Memory offers something different than its self-titled predecessor, but with producer Steve Albini and a new sound that hearkens Fugazi grit while dropping in poppy hooks, it’s no sophomore slump. Download one of the strongest releases of 2012 so far.
Delta Spirit – Delta Spirit
These San Diegans return with grinding instrumentals that are drenched in sunny melodic sing-alongs. Delta Spirit has penned an anthemic springtime record. Buy this album for less than the price of a new kite.
Tennis – Young & Old
Let’s face it—2011’s Cape Dory was cute. Too cute. Young & Old brings in a more honest voice to Tennis’ repertoire while keeping its signature surf rock intact. Unlike the debut, it doesn’t give listeners a sugar crash. Get this album for less than the price of three Slurpees.
Early Winters – Early Winters
This UK group brandishes a sound that—fortunately—doesn’t inspire flannel underwear and hibernation. On the contrary, Early Winters’ full-length debut is better suited for a Sunday drive with the windows down. Amazon offers this for just a few cents more than a gallon of gas—and the tunes last longer than 50 miles.
The Shins – Oh, Inverted World
With the group’s recent release, Port of Morrow, considered one of their strongest releases since their debut, Oh, Inverted World deserves a nostalgic visit. If that’s not reason enough, it’s an essential in any aficionado’s music collection, and for $5 there’s no excuse.
Arctic Monkeys – Suck It and See
It’s been a long five years since Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not. In their fourth full-length, the Brit brats have developed a more subdued sound better fitting for wrapping up a Saturday night than the adrenaline-packed sound that started it. Suck It and See is cheaper than that bar tab you’re picking up for those three women.
Laura Marling – A Creature I Don’t Know
This English songstress is rousing adoration in ’60s English revivalist folk we didn’t know we harbored, and is catching the attention of living legends like Ryan Adams. Ms. Marling’s masterpiece is available for a price that will give you enough money to buy a concert ticket when she tours the States this spring and summer.
The War On Drugs – Slave Ambient
The remaining members of From First to Last picks up the pieces after frontman Sonny Moore (a.k.a. Skrillex) split for electronic pastures, and after TWoD’s departure of Kurt Vile, you’d think the band was worse for wear. Slave Ambient fuels a sound that the group doesn’t need kindled by Kurt Vile, and certainly not by the godfather of dubstep. Spend that $5 on this album rather than glow sticks and a bad trip.
Radiohead – OK Computer
Considered one of the greatest of the past 25 years, this album wrote the rulebook on ambient sturm-und-drang that doesn’t suck. Another necessity in the music library, and if you don’t own it already (and shame on you if you don’t), it’s never been more affordable.
The National – The National
The National’s debut features a young band still figuring out its sound, though Matt Berninger’s voice was on its way to velvety, baritone brilliance. And if that’s not enough for your $5, drummer Bryan Devendorf sits poolside on the cover—what’s not to love?