I love to find new, unique, or renewed sounds in new music: Bon Iver's bearded outdoorsman falsetto, Beirut's use of traditional instruments and foreign sounds, Antony & The Johnsons's trembling vocals, Animal Collective's layers and layers of electronic music, and Andrew Bird's lyrical torsion. Sometimes there are new sounds that just don't work for me, and other times they draw me in and stretch me in a new direction. Even when they don't work, I think it's good for us to be stretched. It keeps us from mere consumption and towards understanding it as art.
Let's be honest, some of you just love everything from U2 but don't realize you are stuck in a moment and can't get out of it. Time for something new. Here are two places to stretch.
2. tUnE-yArDs. I don't really know what to say about this, but the critics are crazy about it. The new album from tUnE-yArDs: W H O K I L L is only $5 right now. If listening to this doesn't stretch you a bit, you may have deeper issues.