Feature ·

[December 5, 2006] Heading to the record store? Here's what's new.

Our writers highlight a handful of notable records scheduled to hit the shelves this Tuesday. Plus, check the full list of this week's releases:




Presents the Re-Up


Here's a study in contrast: The "return" of two "greatest" emcees of all time, Jay-Z and Eminem. In one corner, we have a Renaissance man who can lay claim to being both an entrepreneur and an artist. In the other, we have another Renaissance man with comparable, if not greater, commercial and creative successes. The former has a well-documented performance track record, from street-corner freestyles to worldwide concert tours. The latter has also grown before the media's eye, competing in freestyle competitions and eventually starring in a hit feature-length film about said battles. (Wait, I thought you said there is a contrasting relationship? Patience, I'm getting there.) Lastly, one has returned from retirement to the tune of a finely choreographed media assault, including leaked singles, leaked videos, revoked videos, self-financed liquor endorsements, dis records, and, oh, an album. As for the other? He's got a mixtape. ~Dan Nishimoto

Artist: http://www.eminem.com/

Label: http://www.shadyrecords.com/

Audio: http://www.myspace.com/eminem 

I Love You but I've Chosen Darkness

I Love You but I've Chosen Darkness EP

Secretly Canadian

Here's a re-release of the debut EP from the band with the best name since �And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead. Like that band, this one also hails from Austin. Apparently they like their band names long, dark and cryptic deep in the heart of Texas. This EP originally saw the light of day in 2003 on Emperor Jones. Fear Is on Our Side, the I Love You but I've Chosen Darkness album released on Secretly Canadian earlier this year, received a warm welcome, so the label has decided to put this EP back on the market. It was produced by none other than Spoon's Britt Daniel. The EP contains five songs of blacker-hued indie rock. ~John Zeiss

Album: http://www.chosendarkness.com/

Label: http://www.secretlycanadian.com/

Audio: http://www.myspace.com/chosendarkness

"When You Go Out" MP3: http://www.scjag.com/mp3/sc/whenyougoout.mp3  

Jim Jones

Dipset Christmas


A holiday-themed hip-hop album can be read as the circle being completed. From the historic jump-off of Kurtis Blow's "Christmas Rappin'" to "Ballin' on Xmas," we've� okay, I can't continue with a straight face. If Hov, Diddy and Rush want to push hip-hop to its designer button-up potential, then the members of Dipset have successfully kept it rooted in the blue/red (depending on your set) collar. Falling just short of hocking discs on television (although the inclusion of a "We Fly High" remix could make this album a nice two-for-one deal with the Girls/Guys Gone Wild series), Jones tailors his everyman rap for the holiday streets, namely the "kids in the hood and shit like that." Now, who wouldn't leave this man under the mistletoe with their kids? ~ Dan Nishimoto

Artist: http://www.dipsetworld.net/

Label: http://www.kochrecords.com/

Audio: http://www.myspace.com/jimjones 

Psychic Ills

Early Violence

The Social Registry

Earlier Violence collects tracks from Psychic Ills' first two, vinyl-only releases, Mental Violence I and II, along with another hard-to-find track from a magazine comp and the previously unreleased "Highway of Death." All these dark names might have you thinking the band leans to the side of death metal, but that's not the case. They're New York noisemakers who obviously look up to elder statesmen Sonic Youth. Other influences in the mix include Spacemen 3, My Bloody Valentine, and maybe even Low at their noise-jammiest. Those who liked this year's debut Dins will find more to enjoy here. ~John Zeiss

Label: http://www.thesocialregistry.com/

Audio: http://www.myspace.com/psychicills 

Sinoia Caves

The Enchanter Persuaded


Sinoia Caves is the name for the side project of Black Mountain man Jeremy Schmidt. Whereas that band rocks loud, Schmidt keeps things quieter as Sinoia Caves. He plays everything here -- mainly various different keyboards, but also guitar and percussion. The Enchanter Persuaded originally saw a very small self-release in 2002. While Jagjaguwar cites Popul Vuh, Rick Wakemen and Kraftwerk as RIYLs, I also hear a lot of early Pink Floyd and maybe even Zeppelin when John Paul Jones was on the organ. Those blond kids on the cover of this album certainly bring to mind Houses of the Holy. ~John Zeiss

Label: http://www.jagjaguwar.com/

"Naro Way" MP3: http://www.scjag.com/mp3/jag/naroway.mp3 

Gwen Stefani

The Sweet Escape

Ian at Notes from a Different Kitchen called it when he described Gwen Stefani's hit solo album Love.Angel.Music.Baby. (2004) as the "blueprint for [contemporary] pop music." To understand the assertion, look at the cover of her follow-up, The Sweet Escape: an attractive blonde, bare-shouldered (with just a hint of breast), straight-haired Stefani stares through lightly tinted sunglasses (the type to be worn self-consciously at night) and a heavy coat of airbrush strokes. The look is so now in style yet so empty of meaning, the perfect vestibule for audience interpretation. Though Stefani often nods to such past blonde fatales as Blondie and Madonna, she one-ups them by molding her persona for both male and female consumption. Which is all just a twenty-dollar way of saying "You know you want her." So git up, get out and get into Gwen. ~Dan Nishimoto

Artist: http://www.gwenstefani.com/

Label: http://www.interscope.com/

Audio: http://www.myspace.com/theoneandonlygwenstefani 

Various Artists

OC Mix 6: Covering Our Tracks

Warner Brothers

Anyone still watching The O.C. (poor saps) has seen the show go way downhill, with Summer off at college smoking pot and being an eco-terrorist and Ryan fighting in bare-knuckle cage matches to get over Marisa's death. At least the compilation albums the show churns out are still somewhat interesting. Here, it's all current cool kids doing covers. Band of Horses (Rookies of the Year for 2006) put in a great take on the underappreciated New Year's "The End's Not Near." Other covers of interest include Lady Sovereign's take on "Pretty Vacant" and Mates of State handling the show's theme song, Phantom Planet's "California." Then there's the horrible stuff. Rogue Wave takes all of the menace out of the Pixie's "Debaser" and turns it into heretical soft rock. And if you thought Ben Lee's cover of Modest Mouse's "Float On" sucked, it was a gem compared to the version done by Goldspot here. ~John Zeiss

Album: http://www.musicfromtheoc.com/

Label: http://www.warnerbros.com/

Audio: http://www.myspace.com/theoc

Arab Strap: Ten Years of Tears (Chemikal Underground)
Armin van Buuren: 10 Years (Ultra)
Bobby Bare: Bird Named Yesterday/Talk Me Some Sense 
Brian McKnight: 10 (Warner Bros.)
David Daniell: Coastal (Table of the Elements)
Drake Bell: It's Only Time (Universal)
Elvis Presley: Let Yourself Go: The Making of Elvis the Comeback (Sony / BMG Import)
Eminem: Eminem Presents the Re-Up (Shady)
Frank Zappa: Mofo Project/Object (Zappa)
Gwen Stefani: Sweet Escape (Interscope)
I Love You But I've Chosen Darkness: I Love You But I've Chosen Darkness (Secretly Canadian)
J Xavier: Young Prince of tha South (Music World)
Jim Jones: Dipset Christmas (Koch)
King's X: Ear Candy (Wounded Bird)
Lil Scrappy/DJ Drama: G's Up (BCD Music Group)
Lil Scrappy: Bred 2 Die Born 2 Live (Reprise / Wea)
M.R.K. 1: Copyright Laws (Planet Mu)
Mac Dre/DJ Backside: 16 Wit Dre, Vol. 2 (Thizz)
Mac Dre: Rapper Gone Bad (Thizz)
Mistah F.A.B.: Mac Dre Presents: Thizz Nation, Vol. 8 (Thizz)
NRBQ: Message for the Mess Age (Wounded Bird)
Original Soundtrack: Rocky [30th Anniversary Edition] (Capitol)
Original Soundtrack: Breaking and Entering (V2)
Original Video Game Soundtrack: Bully [Video Game Soundtrack] (Ultra)
Patsy Cline: Sweet Dreams: The Four Star Recordings 1955-1960 (DBK Works)
Patsy Cline: Love Songs (Direct Source)
Paul Wall: Get Ya Mind Correct: The Remix Album [Chopped & Screwed] (Koch)
Project Pat: Crook by Da Book: The Fed Story (Sony)
Psychic Ills: Early Violence (The Social Registry)
Pulp: John Peel Sessions (Umvd Import)
Rich Boy/DJ Drama: Bring It to the Block (BCD Music Group)
Sinoia Caves: Enchanter Persuaded (Jagjaguwar)
Stanley Clarke: Let Me Know You (Wounded Bird)
The Flaming Lips: It Overtakes Me (WEA International)
Too Short: Mack of the Century... Too Short's Greatest Hi (Jive)
Yellowman: Live in San Francisco (2B1)
Yourcodenameis:Milo: Print Is Dead (V2 UK)
Yukmouth/Messy Marv: 100 Racks: The Album (Sumo)

 *Release dates may change. E-mail brandon@prefixmag.com with corrections or additions.

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