April Smith and the Great Picture Show's "Colors" is at least as much a ballad of heartfelt yearning as it is a stomp-and-swagger jam. Eric Ryan Anderson hide caption

itoggle caption Eric Ryan Anderson

In the appropriately titled "Detroit Loveletter," Jose James sounds smart, sexy and soulful. courtesy of the artist hide caption

itoggle caption courtesy of the artist

In "College," the fifth-grade MCs in 3 Titans unleash a charmingly clever and upbeat jam. courtesy of the artist hide caption

itoggle caption courtesy of the artist

Joanna Newsom's new Have One on Me taps into myths of the American West and the open road. Annabel Mehran hide caption

itoggle caption Annabel Mehran

"Let's Write a Book" stretches Field Music's indie-pop aesthetic to its outer limits, delving into electronica and funk. Ian West hide caption

itoggle caption Ian West

Hot Chip formed in 2000 around the core duo of Alexis Taylor (second from left) and Joe Goddard (far left). Bevis Martin and Charlie Youle hide caption

itoggle caption Bevis Martin and Charlie Youle

As a solo singer, Tillman releases a hushed and respectful hymn for a modern age. courtesy of the artist hide caption

itoggle caption courtesy of the artist

On the compilation Black Man's Cry: The Inspiration of Fela Kuti, Cumbia Moderna de Soledad covers Fela's "Shakara," and shares with it a common bloodline. courtesy of Stone's Throw Records hide caption

itoggle caption courtesy of Stone's Throw Records

Cameroonian saxophonist and vibraphone player Manu Dibango performs the title track of Africa Boogaloo. Michael Ochs Archives/Stringer/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Michael Ochs Archives/Stringer/Getty Images