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5 Albums to Stream for Free This Week: Micachu, Lawrence Arabia

It’s Monday, which means it’s time for another edition of our regular start-of-the-week stream-a-thon, wherein we scour the Internet for worthy and/or noteworthy albums that are streaming this week at absolutely no cost. It’s a bit of an uninspiring haul this week, to be honest, but happily we’ve still managed to dredge up five records that are worth your time, led by the excellent new album from ever-fascinating UK producer Micachu and her band the Shapes. There’s also fine indie pop from the antipodes courtesy of Lawrence Arabia, a killer new reggae compilation for the 50th anniversary of Jamaica’s independence, Black Dice type Eric Copeland’s new solo record, and The Gaslight Anthem “doing” Springsteen. Again. It’s all awaiting you after the jump, so click through and get a piece of the action!

Micachu and the Shapes – Never

If the early mutterings about this album involving Micachu “going pop” perhaps put you off it somewhat, then never fear – her songs mightn’t be quite as headache-inducing as they were in the past, but Mica Levi remains as idiosyncratic a talent as ever. According to an interview in the Guardian, where this record’s streaming, she used her usual variety of homemade instruments on Never, including one made from part of her bed. The album also includes several tracks from last year’s witch house-y Chopped and Screwed record. Listen here.

Lawrence Arabia – The Sparrow

We mentioned in our roundup of albums to listen for in July how much we were looking forward to hearing this one by New Zealand indie pop maestro Lawrence Arabia, and it proves a fine listen indeed. Look out for our rundown of other NZ bands you should know later this week – and in the meantime, stream this record via Spinner.

Various Artists – Out of Many

Meanwhile, here’s a veritable treasure trove for reggae fans! Out of Many: 50 Years of Reggae Music bills itself as a “celebration of Jamaican independence” and includes a song from every year since the island was granted independence from Britain in 1962. The entire first disc is streaming at NPR, and features luminaries like The Skatalites, The Jamaicans, Augustus Pablo, and Ken Boothe. Get amongst it via this link.

Eric Copeland – Limbo

We’ve always been partial to the work of Black Dice, and thus we’re also fascinated to hear the band’s various side projects – such as this one, for instance. This is the ever-prolific Eric Copeland’s third solo album. It’s out tomorrow and streaming now via Spin.

The Gaslight Anthem – Handwritten

And finally, this snuck by our highly trained streaming album search team last week (it was uploaded on Tuesday), so we thought we’d better include it this week. It’s basically impossible to mention The Gaslight Anthem without mentioning Bruce Springsteen, and they’re at their most Boss-ish on this new record – not, as ever, an altogether bad thing. Hear it at NPR.