It’s been a good decade since the Michalka sisters (aka Aly & AJ) have made music, probably because they’ve been busy acting and stuff. But that period of reflection and growth appears to have given their sound a refreshing boost, to the point where they’ve actually made a halfway decent pop song. No offense to their earlier material, which had its fans I suppose. This is certainly the first Aly & AJ track I’ll recommend though. Elsewhere, the era of Bon Iver-inspired meditative pop continues to grow, and Haux’s latest “Cologne” manages to show a lot of restraint by maintaining a very sedate piano melody without going for the very obvious, soaring chorus. It’s surprising in a pleasant way, though maybe also just a little disappointing that big time release never quite comes. That’s less of a problem for Slow Magic, who manage to make a solid bit of explosive dance pop in collaboration with Tropics. It’s got beauty and beats in spades, as most great Slow Magic tracks do. Other artists with tracks in this set include Denzel Curry, Jason Nolan, Novi (ft. Tyler Blackburn), Pinkshinyultrablast, Pollyn (ft. Alexis Taylor of Hot Chip), Sol Heilo, Tom Tripp, WAJU (ft. Kyle the Hooligan), and more.

Aly & AJ – Take Me

Haux – Cologne

Slow Magic – Light (ft. Tropics)

Denzel Curry – Skywalker

Elephant Stone – The Devil’s Shelter (Young Galaxy Remix)

Jason Nolan – Batu

Novi – Long Day (ft. Tyler Blackburn)

Pinkshinyultrablast – Find Your Saint

Pollyn – Findaway (ft. Alexis Taylor of Hot Chip)

Sol Heilo – America

Tom Tripp – Pamela

WAJU – 4 Me (ft. Kyle the Hooligan)