I can't help it, but I cringe when hearing that a musician has had their first child. We know what's coming. The new album where the happy new parental unit goes all gooey about this new life and how wonderful it all is.
Holy crap, that sounds cynical. Ahem....
I'm counting on Ani DiFranco to prove me wrong. If ever there was an artist who presents emotions in their pure, raw state, it's Ani. That, and I've always loved the way she abuses her acoustic guitar.
Dream Theater has become an iffy proposition for me. I still take my chances on them with each release, hoping that I'll find a diamond like I did with last year's excellent Systematic Chaos and not get another lump of coal like Octavarium. Chances are better with a live release, however, and this DVD set looks to be pretty promising in that it focuses on much of the previous album and some other material that other live sets haven't featured as prominently. It also has an extensive documentary, videos, and "stage tours" care of Mike Portnoy himself.
Whatever you say about the band, you can't say they don't cater to their fans - Portnoy has made sure fans are well taken care of with bonus content like the above, a whole slew of official bootlegs, and, in the case of this release, a special limited edition that includes three discs of the audio from the concert portion. It's not going to be easy to find, but it will likely be worth it for big fans (here's a hint: Best Buy is stocking them in some stores. Order online for store pickup like I did just a bit ago to save yourself a huge hassle.)
Here are this week's new album releases courtesy of All Music Guide:
The Jesus and Mary Chain
The Power of Negative Thinking: B-Sides & Rarities
Blanco Y Negro/Rhino
College Rock, Noise Pop, Post-Punk, Alternative Pop/Rock
Dream Pop, Neo-Psychedelia, Indie Rock, Alternative Pop/Rock
The Soul of Rock and Roll
Pop/Rock, Pop, Rock & Roll, Rockabilly
Album Rock, Arena Rock, Pop/Rock, Hard Rock
Southern Rap, Gangsta Rap
Urban, Contemporary R&B, Neo-Soul