Recent Free Music of the Week
- September 13, 2010 to September 19, 2010: JoJo:Can't Take That Away From Me (2010)
- It's always good to get music for free, but when it comes from one of your favorite artists it's spectacular. So when JoJo (a guilty pleasure, I know) released her new mixtape, I was ecstatic. JoJo, unlike your typical pop star, has a soulful, well-trained voice that could, perhaps, work better in gospel or soul. This mixtape allowed JoJo to show off a bit more with her voice, allowed her to experiment a little more with music. It's a bit out of the range of her previous two albums, and I like it that way. I think she should explore more opportunities to use her talents. Either way, download, listen, and like her new album for free at http://rap-up.bandcamp.com/
- June 1, 2010 to June 6, 2010: Northbound:Landscapes Of Late (2006) as suggested by MondayMorningLunatic
- Thanks to a suggestion by MondayMorningLunatic, I enjoyed Northbound's Landscapes of Late EP pretty well. "It is the perfect music for a summer evening - watching the sun go down with a drink in your hand." That describes it pretty well, so enjoy. The EP (along with the band's first album) is available for download at the band's official website
- May 3, 2010 to May 9, 2010: After The Reign:After The Reign (2010)
- A pretty impressive demo from a pair of guys at RYM. It is a quite interesting set of four Melodic Death Metal tracks. Pretty standard songs for their genre, but they are really well done, I think the biggest weakness is the vocals, but they're not bad either. I certainly wouldn't be sad to hear more from these guys. Download the tracks at RYM (click on the download symbol next to the tracks)
- April 26, 2010 to May 2, 2010: Altus
- Time to get back to the endless well that is free ambient music with Altus, who is probably, by far, my favorite ambient artist. With a plethora of material to choose from, it's nice to know that almost everything of his I've enjoyed. Personally, my favorites from what I've heard of Altus's material: Autumn Breeze (2005), The Grand Expanse (2007), and Winter Embrace III (2008). His material (sans Winter Embrace II (2006)) is free for download through his website
- April 12, 2010 to April 25, 2010: Brad Smith:MOON8 (2010)
- You're playing some classic Super Mario Bros. and listening to your favorite album, Pink Floyd's The Dark Side of the Moon (1973) of course, when suddenly the NES sucks you into the game (like one of those cool sci-fi/fantasy stories), but instead of the familiar Koji Kondo soundtrack, Dark Side has been transformed along with you into that iconic sound of 8-bit video game systems. In fact, it sounds exactly like the version that can be downloaded at this website. (Don't worry, this link won't tell you that your princess is in another castle )
- Note: This album was presented as Free Music of the Week the same week that Pink Floyd's The Division Bell (1994) was Album of the Week
- April 5, 2010 to April 11, 2010: Sarah Fimm
- March 29, 2010 to April 4, 2010: djDOYOU:Stuntin Like Mufasa (2010)
- Two sentences: "DJ combines Disney music with hip hop songs. Hilarity ensues." There really is nothing more that I have to add. I think this is incredibly well put together and I very much enjoyed it. Probably one of my favorite albums of the year and that's not a joke. Free download links are here (click on the album cover) and enjoy!
- March 15, 2010 to March 28, 2010: Teargarden by Kaleidyscope by Smashing Pumpkins
- This is the Free Music that keeps on giving the whole year 'round (and at the current pace, many years to come). Billy Corgan, and the rest of The Smashing Pumpkins, are releasing eleven four-song EPs (all for free) to culminate as one large box-set album, Teargarden by Kaleidyscope. So far, only three songs have been released, but I'm fairly pleased. It started off really strong with "A Song for a Son" which reminds me of classic rock songs, with some great organ work and a great guitar solo inside there. "Widow Wake My Mind" is poppier with a very catchy melody. Unfortunately, "A Stitch in Time" has been less than memorable, but we won't mention it (except that I already have), and I have realized that the songs get better with a few listens so I may enjoy it later on. There's 41 more songs to come, so keep checking out SP's official website and download the songs as they come out.
- March 8, 2010 to March 14, 2010: Stereogum Presents... OKX: A Tribute To OK Computer (2007)
- OK, this one's for you Radiohead fans! Even though I find Radiohead a little bland, I give them credit for being original in an age of music where everyone is generic and derivative. The featured album is a tenth anniversary tribute album to Radiohead's landmark OK Computer (1997). And this tribute album is quite good. From what I remember of the original album, this tribute gives you a new album where you have the familiarity of the original but not so similar so that you get nothing new. I definitely recommend this one. See Stereogum for download.
- March 1, 2010 to March 7, 2010: Kristi Northup:You See Beauty (2009)
- As a Christian who enjoys good music, it's a struggle sometimes. Most Christian music is awful, I'll be straight, it is just horrid. Also, it's rare that you'll find free albums from Christian artists (which is odd, as we're called to be generous). So, when I got the email that this album was out there for free, and when I listened to it and it didn't suck, I was impressed. It's a good praise and worship/Christian contemporary album for those who are interested. Free download is available at Kristi Northup's official website
- February 22, 2010 to February 28, 2010: J.Period & K'NAAN:The Messengers (2009) as suggested by 220.127.116.11
- This is definitely one of the best concepts for a free album ever. J.Period & K'NAAN collaborated to remix together tracks in tribute to Fela Kuti, Bob Marley, and Bob Dylan, three of the most influential musicians in history. Fela Kuti is the originator of afrobeat and a political figure. Bob Marley is best known for popularizing reggae music outside of Jamaica. Bob Dylan is one of the best known singer-songwriters in music history, still a major figure in music for five decades. J.Period & K'NAAN do a good job of adding a modern hip hop flavor to tribute these musicians. Very much recommended for anyone who wants to diversify their collection. Free download here
- February 15, 2010 to February 21, 2010: Angels & Airwaves:LOVE (2010)
- My friend is a big Angels & Airwaves fan, so when I noticed that their new album was up on their website for free I couldn't help myself, but check it out. First impressions are very good. They've got a very anthemic sound and it's very big and atmospheric. A bit repetitive, and the vocals are a little subpar, but overall a very good album. For fans of bands like Blink-182, The Offspring, and Relient K. I'd recommend this to almost anyone looking for something to listen to. Free download here
- February 8, 2010 to February 14, 2010: Harvey Danger:Little By Little... (2005)
- Harvey Danger's Little by Little...' is just an overall good album. It may not blow you out of the water, but this is quite some good quality music. Of the Indie/Alternative Rock genres, it's just a nice album. Nothing sticks out enough for me to mention it here, but this album is definitely gonna get a few more listens from me.
- Download the ten-track "Phonograph Release" here
- February 1, 2009 to February 7, 2010: The Bastard Fairies:Memento Mori (2007)
- On the surface, Memento Mori is filled rainbows, ponies, sugar, spice,a nd everything nice. Truly, it is a beautiful example of indie pop. When you listen to the lyrics, it reveals the true darkness, if not completely made evident by "We're All Going to Hell". Even the album title is translated as "Remember you must die". Despite this, this album is quite beautiful. It's a rose with thorns, a bunny with teeth, so enjoy! Sign up for the download here
- January 18, 2010 to January 31, 2010: Arghoslent
- For fans of (Melodic) Death Metal, I've dug up a little treat for you this week. Arghoslent has made nine of their brutal songs available on their website. A little rough, even for my taste, but still some very good metal. Enjoy!
- January 4, 2010 to January 17, 2010: Nine Inch Nails:Ghosts I–IV (2008)
- Making their second appearance on Free Music of the Week, Nine Inch Nails first free album is another winner for those of us without deep pockets. In what can only be described as "experimental" music, NIN has produced a very interesting album that blends their natural Industrial sound with some Electronic and Ambient elements to create a truly unique work of art. Despite my dislike for NIN's music, this album is a jump in my direction and I've come to really like this collection of songs, especially after repeated listens. The full album is no longer available on the album's official website, but the first of four "Ghosts" is still free to download here. Download includes Ghost I as high-quality MP3 files (and is a good representation of the whole album), the full album PDF of all the artwork that accompanies the album, and a few extra goodies (wallpapers and such).
- For those of us who enjoy Ghost I and have a few bucks to spare, the full album release is also available for download at the same link as above, for a fee of $5.
- December 21, 2009 to January 3, 2010: 50 Foot Wave:Golden Ocean (2005)
- In this week's new adventure into the realm of free music, I have stumbled across 50 Foot Wave's catalog. Though the vocals aren't to my taste, I really like their instrumentation. They've got a great sound and I could see myself continuing listening to their material. Available for download here, you can download their full free catalog, which contains almost all of their material, including eight of the eleven tracks off of this album, Golden Ocean. Included in the download is a full instrumental collection, which interests me (so as to avoid the vocals). I'm really looking forward to listening to more of their material.
- December 14, 2009 to December 20, 2009: Steven Delopoulos:As If Love Was A Sword: Noisetrade Exclusive B-Sides (2008)
- Steven Delopoulos (of Burlap to Cashmere) is one of my father's favorite artists, so when my dad sent me the link to download this I did the obvious thing: bury the email for six months, because old people listen to lame music, right? Actually, our tastes in music are kinda similar, I just didn't like Steven Delopoulos, but I eventually got around to download this and actually kinda liked it. I'd never admit it to my dad, but this album is pretty good. With a folk/acoustic/americana sound, this album is filled with B-sides (and a few A-sides) that supplement his recent studio album Straightjacket.
- Available for download at NoiseTrade (where you can find TONS more free albums) by telling five friends or paying what you want.
- December 7, 2009 to December 13, 2009: The Wicked Cease from Struggling by Bull of Heaven
- It's been a while since I've have some ambient / drone as Free Music of the Week, so I've decided to blow you guys out of the water. "How?" you may ask. Well, if you'll recall the first FMotW, it was a ~23 hour album, which is pretty impressive. However, I have, since then, found a few that have beat it. This week, we have an album of the week that lasts an ENTIRE WEEK. That's right, The Wicked Cease from Struggling is exactly 168 hours (1 week) long. So, start listening now, and you'll be done just in time to listen to next week's FMotW!
- For the twelve compositions (that I know of) that are at or longer than a day long (including a few that even beat this one), see this list.
- To download this song/album, you have to follow a few steps. First: download the forty-seven pieces of the file from here. Then, use a file-splitter (such as the free program HJSplit) to stitch these pieces together into one .mp3 file. Due to the large size of the file, it is difficult/impossible to play in some media players (for myself, iTunes took 30min to process/add the file to my library). Feel free to check out Bull of Heaven's FAQs for some information.
- November 30, 2009 to December 6, 2009: In The Aerorate Over Your Music (2009)
- In the Aerorate over Your Music is a tribute cover album of Neutral Milk Hotel's In the Aeroplane over the Sea (1998) performed by members of RateYourMusic
- I don't know that there is much good I can say about this album, but the circumstances were too perfect to pass up the occasion. I'll start off with the bad: The name is terrible, and the music isn't much better. As expected, the music isn't as good as the original album (which I thought was a bit bland and too inaccessible to enjoy).
- OK, so here's the good news: obviously, it's free (check out any of the following three links to download: RateYourMusic, MediaFire, RapidShare). This also affords me the opportunity to plug one of my favorite sites on the internet (it's up there with LyricWiki). RateYourMusic doesn't provide lyrics, but it has everything else music related you could ever want (and also just recently added films/movies to the site). I find it very useful to maintain my collection (digitally for easy lookup), provide information on labels, create lists, look up concerts, and talk on the forums, along with many more feature of the site. And, of course, let's not forget that you can rate music. Feel free to check out the charts and see what you agree with, disagree with, and need to check out.
- Note: This album was presented as Free Music of the Week the same week that In the Aeroplane over the Sea was Album of the Week
- November 23, 2009 to November 29, 2009: Karlahan:A Portrait Of Life (2009)
- When you dive into the wonder that is free music, you quickly realize that ambient and drone type releases are by far the most numerous, so this week I'm choosing something that is completely opposite. Ambient music is meant to calm and Karlahan's A Portrait of Life is meant to get your blood boiling (in a good way). This one is for all of the metalheads in the audience; a piece that typifies Symphonic Metal and all it stands for. With its full sound, blazingly quick riffs, and harsh vocals, I recommend this to any metalhead looking to save a few bucks on their next album purchase. A link for the download can be found on their official MySpace blog
- November 16, 2009 to November 22, 2009: Diablo Swing Orchestra:The Butcher's Ballroom (2006)
- The Butcher's Ballroom is an album that truly spans across many genres: orchestral/symphonic, swing, hard rock, and many others; it is best described by avant garde metal. It is an interesting journey through many worlds of music. The Diablo Swing Orchestra is also an enigmatic story. According to this Candlelight Records bio, the band is a tribute (made of living ancestors) to a 16th century Swedish orchestra who also made who also sounded like no other musical act around at the time. DSO is definitely something to check out. Download the album at jamendo
- November 9, 2009 to November 15, 2009: The Hollyfelds
- I'm not a big fan of country music, but I do enjoy the occasional song or two. The Hollyfelds know how to do it right and make it available for free. I am impressed by the quality of the performance here. The Hollyfelds have released two albums, and made available six of their songs on their website for free download including "What It Feels Like", "I'm Gonna Feel Tonight", "It's a Good Thing", and "Stars at Night". My personal favorite recently has been "2 A.M.".
- I'm also going to give a shout-out to Five Iron Frenzy (a related artist), unfortunately no free downloads from them, but one of my personal favorites of all time. If you enjoy ska, stop everything you're doing right now and go get one of their albums.
- November 2, 2009 to November 8, 2009: Karhu:Sinfonia For The Blunt Sword (2008)
- As an alternate soundtrack to Fritz Lang's 1927 masterpiece Metropolis, which is a welcome change from Moroder's 1984 soundtrack (ugh, cheesy 80s synth pop). The music itself, is very experimental, spanning many genres. It is truly a different experience that cannot be explained. Free for download, under Creative Commons license, as MP3, OGG, or FLAC quality files at KarhuMusic.org
- October 26, 2009 to November 1, 2009: Torrent Vaccine:rEmiXUDE (2009)
- rEmiXUDE is a compilation album containing eight unique remixes, from eight different artists, of Torrent Vaccine's "Exude". Though you may be inclined to think it will be repetitive, I found that each artist brought a unique taste and style to the song, and although it is the same song, the products are much different. This album is a good Dance/Electronica release. Available for free download here (bottom of page). A generous donation from Bit Riot Records, Torrent Vaccine, and the participating artists: Mangadrive, Phonogeist, Masoschizm, RFID, 6RME, The Autopsy Report, Kevindustrial, and Baconhanger.
- October 19, 2009 to October 25, 2009: Maudlin Of The Well:Part The Second (2009)
- Part the Second is a journey through Maudlin of the Well's progressive soundscapes, ranging from symphonic to hard rock. This album is highly regarded by critics, but I tend to find it a bit inaccessible and bland, especially during vocal parts. Still, there is some great instrumentation here and overall great music for a free album. Pick up your .mp3, .wav, or .flac version at Maudlin of the Well's Official Website
- October 12, 2009 to October 18, 2009: Pornophonique:8-Bit Lagerfeuer (2007) as suggested by 18.104.22.168
- Once upon a time, video games were not 3-D, they didn't incorporate textures, they didn't have flashy soundtracks, they had eight bits. With these eight bits came a narrow variety of sounds to represent a soundtrack, but the beauty was doing so much with so little. It is from this concept that a new class of genres comes from: chiptune, 8bit, bitpop, and countless others which use or emulate the sounds of old video game consoles, such as the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). Pornophonique combines this with some rock elements to create a soundscape for all the nerds out there (you know you are!). So sit back, relax, and enjoy the free download from jamendo
- John Wesley is a singer/songwriter and guitarist, probably best known as doing work as a sideman with Porcupine Tree. He has made his entire studio discography available for free download on his website. Shiver is a good album filled with simple rock songs. I describe it as very comfortable rock music. Very respectable in quality, I would recommend it to anyone looking for free music. Download it here (with email signup)
- September 28, 2009 to October 4, 2009: The Smashing Pumpkins:Machina II/The Friends & Enemies Of Modern Music (2000)
- Machina II is steeped in mystery and controversy. The album was produced by the band, but as a gesture against their music label, they only created 25 copies (distributed mainly to friends and family). Some copies were given to prominent fans with the instructions to distribute the album for free on the internet. As such, several versions exist today from different sources (see Wikipedia). The album is pretty good. Good quality alternative rock which sometimes veers into harder rock. By far, my favorite song is "Glass" which comes at you a mile a minute: intense focused rock. Free download is available at Archive.org
- September 21, 2009 to September 27, 2009: Conelrad:Function Creep (2007)
- This is some really good ambient electronic music. Grab a cool drink, sit back, and relax to the soothing soundscapes of Conelrad. It's good to use as a release from the pressures of everyday life that we all have to deal with. Not just this album, but everything this guy has put out. Download them all for free here
- Additional comments were made about this album here
- Mit Anlauf, despite my skepticism, was actually quite good. A mix of reggae, rock, ska, and rap, I can definitely tell a lot of work went into this one. A mix of German and English lyrics, though admittedly a bit rough around the edges, are fun to listen to even if I can't understand half of it, but the real gem here is in the music. Free download is available at JAMMIN*INC's official website
- September 7, 2009 to September 13, 2009: Nine Inch Nails:The Slip (2008)
- Nine Inch Nails is the essential industrial band, and The Slip is no exception. This album was the original inspiration in my searching for free music. I used to think that the only free music online was of terrible quality (or illegal), but when a high-profile band like NIN released a free album, it made me search for more. As for the music, I'm not a big fan of Industrial, but I did very much enjoy the three instrumental pieces ("999,999", "Corona Radiata", "The Four of Us Are Dying"). The files themselves are a gift also. Available in several different formats, including traditional mp3, but also as high quality as 24/96 .wav files. This is, at least, worth checking out. Free for download (with email confirmation) here.
- August 24, 2009 to August 30, 2009: Coldplay:LeftRightLeftRightLeft (2009)
- Everyone is a Coldplay fan, except me. That's what it seems like. However, I will say that their last album, Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends, was pretty good. LeftRightLeftRightLeft is the free live compliment for the Viva la Vida tour and it does a pretty good job of capturing the music. The quality of the audio is great, and the songs themselves are pretty good too. Everyone's a Coldplay fan, so you probably already have this album, but if you don't, sign up to download it here.
- August 17, 2009 to August 23, 2009: Umisetsu & Martin Dot:Flowers EP (2005)
- Another ambient / drone-centered release, but this time I have listened to this one and love it. A simple pleasant chord-toned piece, this signifies the simple smell of a flower for me. It makes me picture an endless green field where I can just forget about the pressures of real life and just zone out to my "happy place". Definitely a piece to relax to. Free download is available at Rain Netlabel, the label's official website or at Archive.org
- August 10, 2009 to August 16, 2009: Hearts Of Palm:The Bridge E.P. (2008)
- This is some quality free music here and probably my favorite free music that I've found. I discovered Hearts of Palm because one of the members was also a part of the incredibly awesome, but incredibly (unfortunately) unknown Five Iron Frenzy. The Bridge E.P. gives some simple indie rock songs that are very enjoyable. Hopefully they will live up to the hype. Free download of the EP is available at the band's official website
- The above link returns a "404 Not Found" error currently04:41, November 16, 2009 (UTC), and served as the only official link to the free EP.
- August 3, 2009 to August 9, 2009: NǽnøĉÿbbŒrğ VbëřřĦōlökäävsŦ:The Ultimate Fate of the Universe (2007)
- To test out my new feature, may I now present to you the longest album in all of existence; just for your collection and so you can show off to your friends. The Ultimate Fate of the Universe is a (nearly) 23 hour conceptual representation of the life of our universe from the Big Bang to its ultimate death. An ambient soundscape that lets you sit back and tune the world out. Free download is available at the band's official website.