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May's top album releases

These country and alternative albums fight to be the best summer setlist

May 8, 2014 | 12:00 a.m. CST


HUNTER HAYES: STORYLINE
Release date: May 6
Hayes has been performing since he was 4, but he didn’t make it big until the release of his first album Wanted two years ago. For a long time, “Wanted” and later “I Want Crazy” played constantly on radio stations. His second studio album, Storyline, is the No. 1 album on iTunes. Storyline’s first single, “Invisible,” tells a tale about being an outsider, which Hayes felt like in high school.





THE BLACK KEYS: TURN BLUE
Release date: May 13
The titular single “Turn Blue” released in April and has a psychedelic feel, despite the Ohio band’s roots in blues rock. The group’s departure from its soulful sound stems from The Black Keys’ desire to make a “headphone” record, one that you can listen to as a whole, according to an interview the group did with Rolling Stone.





RASCAL FLATTS: REWIND
Release date: May 16
The country band behind the infectious remake of “Life is a Highway” is back with their ninth album. “Rewind,” their latest single, appears in the film Heaven Is For Real. Another song on the album, “Payback,” will be the revenge song of the summer, the band says; the tone is reminiscent of Carrie Underwood’s “Before He Cheats.”





COLDPLAY: GHOST STORIES
Release date: May 19
Coldplay fans are crossing their fingers for another album like A Rush of Blood to the Head, the title of the band’s first album. The band has changed styles wildly since then, and some fans were disappointed with Mylo Xyloto. But there’s hope yet. These Brits just showed “A Sky Full of Stars” on SNL and received rave reviews. The song is in the top 10 of iTunes charts.

Album artwork courtesy of Amazon.com

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