Here's a quick look at a handful of new albums, as well as a list of the rest of the stuff that's supposed to hit shelves this week:
[more:] The New Pornographers Twin Cinema Matador
Album samples After last year's critically acclaimed solo album The Slow Wonder, A.C. (or Carl, as he's known in the band) Newman returns to his full time gig as the leader of Indie Pop heroes The New Pornographers for this, their third LP. Neko Case and Dan Bejar are back, along with new vocalists Kathryn Calder and Nora O'Connor. The album has been billed as a harder companion to their earlier work, but I doubt there will be any black metal covers.
Public Enemy Rebirth of a Nation Guerilla Funk
Album samples Routinely topping polls as the greatest Hip Hop album ever made, Public Enemy's It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back has seen its influence over the hip hop agenda dwindle in recent times. As commercialism sets in and even the white CNN sells out, Public Enemy's mission has faded into the background, much like the group itself. 2002's Revolverlution was an awkward mish mash of live tracks, original songs, interviews and remixes that came and went with little buzz. This new attempt, their ninth, brings producer Paris into the group. Whether or not Public Enemy's music or message will stick twenty years into their career remains to be seen.
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club Howl Red Ink
Album samples Moving from Virgin to RCA and the smaller Red Ink, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club look to avoid settling for their role as the druggy garage band of their generation on Howl, their third LP. Moving away from the sound that made them kinda sorta famous, the trio have moved to more folk and country inflected sounds, pulling back even further than the retro rock sound they broke through with. So if Howl turns out to be what they say it is, it could just turn out to be a worthwhile excursion. The rock revivalist bands of 2001 were almost universally burned by an imposed rule to stick to the script on their sophomore records. Perhaps a successful third album will bode well for the forthcoming Strokes record, too.
Kurupt Against Tha Grain Death Row Records
Album samples Among the top emcees in Hip Hop, there are the really great also rans, the rappers that could never quite make that great record that proved to everyone that they were at the top of their game. Canibus is one. Jada's records suck. You could even argue that Tupac doesn't have a straight up classic. Kurupt is one of those rappers, a proven emcee that just hasn't been able to show people what he can do on his own records. Against tha Grain is his fourth attempt, and just the fact that it is a year late doesn't bode well. Of course, it's being released on Death Row Records, by Suge Knight and Co. Kurupt is one of the only big names they have these days (along with Petey Pablo and, yes, they still own all of Tupac's recordings), so he'll look to protect his investment. The single "Throw Bacc Muzic," is pretty dated, but Kurupt gives a decent enough performance.
Alcyone: The Stars Are Real (System) American Princes: Little Spaces (Yep Roc) American Princes: Little Spaces (Yep Roc) Anthony Braxton: 20 Standards (Quartet) 2003 (Leo) Artie Shaw: Artie Shaw Story (Proper Box) Artie Shaw: Complete Rhythm Makers Sessions 1937-1938, Vol. 3 (Jazz Band) Artie Shaw: Summit Ridge Drive (ASV/Living Era) August Born: August Born (Drag City) August Born: August Born (Drag City) Barney: The Land of Make Believe (Koch) Bayside: Bayside (Victory) Benny Goodman & His Orchestra: Journey to a Star (Sounds of Yesteryear) Bessie Smith: Sweet Mistreater (United States Dist) Bill Ricchini: Tonight I Burn Brightly (Transdreamer) Björk: Drawing Restraint 9 [Original Soundtrack] (One Little Indian Us) Black Mafia: Mac Dre Presents: Tha Family Reunion (Thizz) Black Rebel Motorcycle Club: Howl (Red Ink) Blind Willie McTell: Regal Country Blues (Acrobat) The Bloody Hollies: If Footmen Tire You (Alive) Blood of Abraham: Eyedollartree (Red Urban) Boris With Merzbow: Sun Baked Snow Cave (Hydra Head) Brand Nubian: Solo Material (Babygrande) Broken Spindles: Inside/Absent (Saddle Creek) Buddy Holly: True Love Ways (Pazzazz) Carl Barat: Under the Influence (Under the Influence) Chad Vangaalen: Infiniheart (Sub Pop) Charles Mingus: Modern Jazz Symposium of Music and Poetry (Shout Factory) Charlie Parker: East of the Sun (Proper Box) Charlie Parker: Star Eyes (Proper) Chris Gray: From Where I Am (Brown Bear Music) Clyde McPhatter & The Drifters: 1953-1954 (Classics R&B) Crazy Frog: Presents Crazy Hits (Universal) The Cribs: The New Fellas (Wichita) Criteria: When We Break (Saddle Creek) Curl Up and Die: One Above All the End of All That Is (Revelation) D.O.A.: Greatest Shits (Sudden Death) Daniel Powter: Daniel Powter (Warner Bros.) Daz Dillinger: Samplin' to the Beat of the Drum (Gangsta Advisory) Delbert McClinton: Cost of Living (New West) Dexter Gordon: Daddy Plays the Horn (Shout Factory) Dizzy Gillespie: 1953 (Classics Fr) E-40: Bay Bridges Compilation (Sick Wid It) Elvis Presley: Concert Anthology 1954-1956 (Master Classics) The Exploited: Death Before Dishonour [Bonus Tracks] (Captain Oi!) The Exploited: Massacre [Bonus Tracks] (Captain Oi!) The Fall: Rebellious Jukebox (Recall) Friends of Dean Martinez: Live at Club 2 [LIVE] (Aero Recordings) Gabin: Mr. Freedom [Remix] (Astralwerks) General Elektriks: Cliquety Kliqk (Quannum Projects) The Get Quick: How the Story Goes (Rainbow Quartz) The Grates: The Ouch. The Touch [EP] (Cherry Tree) Green Day: X-Posed: The Interview (United States Dist) Hank Williams: Settin' the Woods on Fire (Recall) Hank Williams: Settin' the Woods on Fire (Recall) Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes/Atlantic Starr: Christmas with Harold Melvin and the Blue Notes (Platinum Disc) The Hospitals: I've Visited the Island of Jocks and Jazz (Load) Hush: Jayda and Ap.9 (Goodfella) I Am Kloot: Gods and Monsters (Echo) Interpol: Antics [Bonus CD] (Matador) Jack's Mannequin: Everything in Transit (Maverick) James Blunt: Back to Bedlam [Import] () James Brown: Please Please Please (Pazzazz) Jay Dee: Welcome 2 Detroit (BBE/Beat Gen) J-Diggs: Mac Dre Presents: California Livin', Pt. 2 (Thizz) Jerry Garcia: The Jerry Garcia Collection, Vol. 1: Legion of Mary [ORIGINAL RECORDING REMASTERED] (Rhino / Wea) Jim Jones: Diary of a Summer (Koch) John Lee Hooker: Boom Boom (Pazzazz) John Lee Hooker: Old Time Shimmy (Fruit Tree) John Vanderslice: Pixel Revolt (Barsuk) John Wilkes Booze: Telescopic Eyes Glance the Future Sick (Kill Rock Stars) Johnny Cash: Country Boy (Pazzazz) Johnny Rawls: No Boundaries (Topcat) J-Roc: Raising Hell (BCD Music Group) JT The Bigga Figga: Something Crucial (Getlow) JT The Bigga Figga: Who Grind Like Us (Getlow) June: If You Speak Any Faster (Victory) Kurupt: Against the Grain (Death Row) Laura Veirs: Years of Meteors (Nonesuch) Leo Kottke & Mike Gordon: Sixty Six Steps (RCA) Lisa Gerrard/Jeff Rona: Thousand Roads [Original Score] (Reincarnate Music) LMNO: P's and Q's (Up Above) Lost Patrol: Lost Patrol Band (Burning Heart) Louis Armstrong: Blues for Yesterday (Pazzazz) The Lovemakers: Times of Romance (Cherry Tree) Maceo: Straight Out da Pot (Big Cat) Maceo: Straight Out da Pot [Chopped and Screwed] (Big Cat) Makers: Everybody Rise! (Kill Rock Stars) Marvin Gaye: Joy (Pazzazz) Medina Green: Funky Fresh in the Flesh Mix Tape, Vol. 2 (Illson Media) Michael Jackson: X-Posed: The Interview (United States Dist) Mike Park: North Hangook Falling (Sub City) Miles Davis: Complete Jack Johnson Sessions (Sony) Minus the Bear: Menos el Oso (Suicide Squeeze) Miri Ben-Ari: Hip Hop Violinist (Universal) Misha Mengelberg: Senne Sing Song (Tzadik) Moore Brothers: Bee (Plain) Moore Brothers: Readyville (Plain) Napalm Death: Punishment in Capitals (Snapper Classics) Nausea: Punk Terrorist Anthology, Vol. 2: 1986-1988 (Alternative Tentacles) New Buffalo: Last Beautiful Day (Arts & Crafts) New Pornographers: Twin Cinema (Matador) Nine Inch Nails: Only [CD-Singl] (Universal Int'l) Noam Chomsky: Imperial Presidency: Sovereignty, Terror and the Second Superpower (G-7 Welcome Committe ) Nob Dylan & His Nobsoletes: Positively 12 Stiff Dylans (Alternative Tentacles) Ol' Dirty Bastard: Free to Be Dirty: Live! (Nutech Digital) Orange: Welcome to the World of... (Hellcat) Orenda Fink: Invisible Ones (Saddle Creek) Original Soundtrack: Four Brothers [SOUNDTRACK] (Motown / Pgd) Original TV Soundtrack: Queer as Folk: The Fifth Season (Tommy Boy) P.S.D.: Mac Dre Presents: P.S.D. Classic (Thizz) P.S.D.: Mac Dre Presents: The Guru (Gateway Ent.) The Pale Pacific: Urgency (Sidecho) Paradise Boys: Young & The Guest List [Bonus Track] (5 Points) Patsy Cline: Walking and Dreaming (Masked Weasel) Peter, Paul & Mary: Very Best of Peter, Paul & Mary (Rhino) Portastatic: Bright Ideas (Merge) Prurient: Black Vase (Load) Public Enemy: Rebirth of a Nation (Guerrilla Funk) Rachel Ries: For You Only (Waterbug) Ray Charles: Blues Is My Middle Name (Pazzazz) Ray Charles: Genius Remixed (Cleopatra) The Real McKenzies: 10,000 Shots (Fat Wreck Chords) The Red Hot Chili Peppers: X-Posed: The Interview (United States Dist) Rise Against: The Unraveling [ORIGINAL RECORDING REMASTERED] (Fat Wreck Chords) Rogue Wave: 10:1 [CD-SINGLE] (Sub Pop) Rooftop Suicide Club: Always Like This (Stop Pop & Roll) Santana: Jingo (Pazzazz) Sarah Bettens: Scream (Hybrid (Red)) Scarling: So Long Scarecrow (Sympathy for the Record Indust) Sixtoo: Duration [Bonus Tracks] (Ninja Tune) Smash Mouth: All Star: The Smash Hits of Smash Mouth (Interscope) Smif N Wessun Presents the General Steele: Welcome to Bucktown USA (Duck Down Music) Soilent Green: Pussysoul (Dwell) South Central Cartel: South Central Madness (Warlock) Supergrass: Road to Rouen [IMPORT] (EMI/Parlophone) Syd Matters: Syd Matters (V2) T. Raumschmiere: Blitzkrieg Pop (Mute) T-Bone Walker: Papa Ain't Salty (United States Dist) Tenement Halls: Knitting Needles and Bicycle Bells (Merge) Trick Pony: R.I.D.E. (Curb) Turbonegro: Punkstyle Rock N Roll (Abacus) Van Morrison: Here Comes (Pazzazz) Various Artists: Dimension Mix (Eenie Meenie) Various Artists: Hip Hop Tribute to Led Zeppelin (Tribute Sounds) Various Artists: Spend an Evening With Saddle Creek [DVD] (Plexifilm) Various Artists: We Reach: The Music of the Melvins (Fractured Trans) Warlocks: Surgery (Mute) Willie Nelson: Ghost, Vol. 2 (Masked Weasel) Willie Nelson: Last Letter (Pazzazz) Willis "Gator" Jackson: Later for the Gator (Acrobat) X27: Antilove (Narnack) Yes: Word Is Live (Rhino) *Release dates may change. E-mail email@example.com with correction or additions.