The Top 5 Local Records To Look Forward to This Fall

Don’t miss new albums from Macklemore, IVVY, Versing, Mackned, and Darto.

Macklemore | Gemini

While I admittedly wouldn’t call myself a fan of Macklemore, I do believe in giving credit where it’s due. Gemini is not only a big deal because of the absence of Ryan Lewis, but locally it will be huge because of the addition of tons of talent from Seattle’s own scene. Macklemore, who has taken heat around town for not bringing the spotlight to fellow Seattle artists, has stepped up in a big way. Dave B, Travis Thompson, Otieno Terry, and Saint Claire are all included on a record that also features Offset, Lil Yachty, Skylar Grey, and Kesha. Big shout out to Ben for putting some Seattle flavor on the map. Macklemore, LLC, Sept. 22 M. ANTHONY DAVIS

Darto | Human Giving

Seeing Darto live feels like getting sucked into a wormhole. Time just passes differently when they perform. Earlier in the members’ musical career, they achieved this through Slint-like post-punk/post-rock dirges and feverishly motorik rhythms, ripping open vortexes with blistering riffs then cruising steadily through the slipstream. Lately, though, Darto’s taken a completely different though equally hypnotic tack: sparse instrumentation with a slight Americana tinge, peppered with mantra-like melodies and unexpectedly propulsive song structures. Upcoming album Human Giving’s lead single “I Am” begins with faint, lilting acoustic guitar, but by the end the wafting cello lines, eerie handclaps, and whispered vocals combine into hushed, spell-like sorcery whose power as potent as it is hard to explain. Aagoo Records, Sept. 22 KELTON SEARS

Versing | Nirvana

Like the famous Marcel Duchamp painting that inspired its title, last year’s EP Nude Descending by Seattle four-piece Versing was fractured, chaotic, and evocative, demonstrating the band’s gift for taut, hook-heavy melodies. Their recent single “Radio Kinski” portends more of the same for their upcoming album Nirvana, with smoky chords that start out slouching and end smoldering. Frontman Daniel Salas has explained the album’s title not as a nod to Kurt et al., but rather to an ironic mental state of self-acceptance amid disaster, likening it to the meme that ends with a frame depicting a brain ablaze in enlightenment. Get ready to ascend. Help Yourself Records and Decency Den, Sept. 29 JULIANNE BELL

IVVY | Safe Within

Going hard is a talent in itself, and IVVY (Madi Levine) holds their own among Seattle’s hardest. This DJ/producer’s live performances are relentless, battering, and zealous, so much so they have to wring their T-shirt out after every show. But what sets IVVY apart and above isn’t just how hard, dark, piercing, and percussive they can go. IVVY’s music is also laden with emotion, which fosters the kind of catharsis people seek in dance music. IVVY is combining courage and tenderness to make an album that sounds like a suit of armor, and Safe Within is exactly the wordless battle cry and beat-driven release people need from techno right now. Transfusions, Sept. 29CATE MCGEHEE

Mackned | Hollywood Dropout

Back when West Seattle’s Mackned released his first few EPs under his Hurt Cobain alias, mixing sad rock with trap still seemed strange. Today, fellow GOTHBOICLIQUE member Lil Peep is one of the Internet’s biggest stars with his potent, teen-tested blend of emo and rap, racking up millions of listens and views on Soundcloud and YouTube. With Hollywood Dropout, Mackned sounds like he’s honed the peculiar but wildly popular new style he helped birth in the first place. But unlike Lil Peep, he’s still sticking to Seattle sounds when it comes to his own fusion, rapping on top of the dark grunge tones he grew up with. Self-released, Sept. TBA KS

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