This week we get two arena-ready rock albums, a breakout country star's sophomore effort, and a roots-rock collective hoping to continue a recent string of success. Plus one of the best in the EDM game delivers a feature-heavy joyride. These are the highlights from this week's New Music Friday.
In the lead up to Origins, Dan Reynolds and Imagine Dragons were very clear about the connection their fourth album shared with their GRAMMY-winning, platinum third effort Evolve. Created in the same time frame, Origins is thought of as a "sister album" to Evolve, one that shares a similar DNA but certainly has an eye for other things. While the previous collection was packed with self-affirming anthems, Origins in more concerned with relationships. Actually, more the dissolution and the struggles of a relationship, which is no doubt the personal dealings of Dan Reynolds bleeding in like never before. Origins is obviously a different era for Imagine Dragons, one that can't shake the lovelorn sadness of a relationship, but it is still steeped in solid songwriting and sonic adventures. - Michael Cerio
Muse is back with another album that feels larger than life, creating a universe of their own with the brand new Simulation Theory. Complete with a Super Deluxe edition that includes “Alternate Reality” and acoustic versions of tracks, their latest LP is more than ready to be the soundtrack to a sci-fi movie… and your life. The sonically huge album takes listeners on a journey through the English rock band’s dystopian world with cinematic grooves such as “Algorithm” and “Propaganda.” - Tiana Timmerberg
Kane Brown has released his sophomore album and it is quite the Experiment. While the new collection was produced by Dan Huff, the 24-year-old co-wrote eleven of the twelve tracks featured on the album. Brown first introduced the project with his upbeat and current single, “Lose It.” Experiment also includes his chart-topping hits “Homesick” and “Good As You.” Brown has taken the country genre by storm since his debut in 2016 and it’s safe to say that he has released what is one of the top albums of 2018 with plenty of infectious new tunes. - Lauren Hoffman
The beyond talented super-DJ and producer, Steve Aoki has unleashed EDM on his new album Neon Future III, that’s ready for direct injection straight into your feel-good, rave-ready heart. Aoki’s fifth studio album, Neon Future III enlists talent from all over the musical spectrum, world, and even occupation! The album contains collabs with former One Direction member Louis Tomlinson, Blink-182, Mike Posner, former Fifth Harmony singer Lauren Jauregui, the BTS boys, Lady Antebellum and even Bill Nye. This heavy hitting and rave-primed album will make you want to get up and JUMP. Some of our personal favorites include "Why Are We So Broken" featuring Blink-182, previously released "All Night" with Lauren Jauregui and "Waste It on Me" featuring BTS, and of course "Noble Gas" featuring Bill Nye – which has been one of the most anticipated collabs since its announcement. - LA
The Revivalists are back with their highly-anticipated new effort. Take Good Care is the New Orleans band’s 4th studio album and first since 2015’s Men Amongst Mountains. Take Good Care starts with the subdued “Otherside of Paradise,” on which David Shaw sings “Fill my windless sail with broken echoes of a never ending life.” The album picks up steam on the dance-ready, “All My Friends,” which is already a hit. It spent three weeks at number one on the Billboard Adult Album Alternative chart. Overall, Take Good Care is a diverse collection of 14 songs that also includes the made-for-driving “Next to You” and the reggae-tinged “You and I.” - Bob Diehl
Also out this week are new albums from Hanson, Jeff Goldblum, and Tee Grizzley.