My Morning Jacket

I had high expectations for My Morning Jacket’s first release since their 2015 Grammy Award-nominated The Waterfall. After all, it was theoretically six years in the making and the product of a pandemic. The self-titled, ninth studio album seemed meh at first, but like a musical version of the law of increasing returns, sounded better with each listen. It opens with “Regularly Scheduled Programming”—frontman Jim James’s lament about trading real life for social media and getting lost in false realities while track two—“‘Love Love Love”—is James’s effort to encourage us to wake up to real love. The remaining nine tracks are mostly mellow and groovy tunes with a couple of southern rockers in the mix. Fans will enjoy the nine-minute “The Devil’s In The Details,” which features layered vocals and a subtle horn arrangement that would sound amazing reverberating in an outdoor venue (remember those?).

-Michelle McChristie