We break them down by how pissed-off you should be to listen.
TORCHE, Harmonicraft (Volcom)
The Gist: Overdriven guitars, Steve Brooks’s shouting, and the band’s memorable melodies recall the Melvins and Hüsker Dü at their catchiest.
Best Track: “Kiss Me Dudely”
What’s Your Listening Mood? Frustratingly horny. You’ve been chatting up a prospective trick all night, the tension is building, and you’re ready to just throw your fist down on the bar and demand to have your face sucked.
The Gist: Drawing from Norway’s lineage of black metal, God Seed’s fuzzy guitars, funky keyboards, and snarled delivery evoke groups like Emperor -- or Metallica magnified by a million.
Best Track: “The Wound”
What’s Your Listening Mood? So incensed that you’re vindictive. Imagine that you’ve just been kicked out of line at the club, but your boyfriend got in.
NÜ SENSAE, Sundowning (Suicide Squeeze)
The Gist: Screeching vocal acrobatics and caterwauling guitars make this record sound like a car wreck between Courtney Love and L7 -- everyone walks away unscathed but dead inside.
Best Track: “Dust”
What’s Your Listening Mood? Think teenage angst, like if your mom just found links to your favorite porn sites and smashed your laptop. You want to scream. Allow Nü Sensae to accompany you.
GAYTHEIST, Stealth Beats (Good to Die Records)
The Gist: Thanks to crunchy, bass-heavy production and frontman Jason Rivera’s soaring wails, Gaytheist split the difference between the Dead Kennedys and Fugazi.
Best Track: “Hand Holder”
What’s Your Listening Mood? Hopeless, really. Imagine it’s the end of the world and, as Gaytheist’s Jason Rivera explains, you’re one of two humans who were cryogenically frozen with hopes of repopulating the earth. “The two last humans are a gay man and a gay woman. They’re like, ‘Fuck this,’ and they just hold hands and jump off a cliff.”