Saturday , April 20 2024
Now, this is more like it.

New Album Releases 11/11/08: Cheap Trick, Genesis, Christina Aguilera, Flaming Lips, Tracy Chapman, Mudcrutch, T-Pain, Taylor Swift, New Order, Vance Gilbert & More

Now this is more like it.

If last week's new album releases seemed just a bit thin, what we've got in store for you this week is a lot closer to what the record store is supposed to look like this time of year. With just over two weeks to go before the kickoff of the holiday buying season, "Black Friday" may not be so black this year after all.

The reissues, hits packages, and boxed sets are looking especially good this week. Tom Johnson will be along in just a bit to talk about the new Genesis box, which focuses on the Peter Gabriel years. Meanwhile, Rhino has deluxe double-disc reissues of all of New Order's early albums.

Cheap Trick's four disc Budokan! features the great power pop band's complete legendary Japanese concert at Budokan, as well as another show from the same venue recorded a few nights later. Best of all, it includes the original Budokan concert on DVD for the first time (the concert was originally shown on Japanese television). This set is a must-have for Cheap Trick fans.

Christina Aguilera's Keeps Gettin' Better: A Decade of Hits is a little more than just a greatest hits compilation, as it includes several new tracks and remakes of "Genie" and "Beautiful." It's also one of those ever-more frequent retail exclusives, with Target being the sole place you can purchase the CD this time around.

The Flaming Lips new Christmas on Mars is a multimedia event that has been seven years in the making and, as usual, is just the sort of whacked-out psychedelic freakout you'd expect from the Lips. The package includes both the CD and the DVD featuring the Christmas on Mars film. You certainly can't fault the Flaming Lips for any lack of ambition.

Tom Petty's Mudcrutch gets its second release this year with the four-song Mudcrutch Extended Play Live E.P. Country cutie Taylor Swift gets Fearless on her sophomore CD. T-Pain is joined by Akon, Ciara, Lil Wayne, Ludacris, Kanye West and others on his third album, Thr33 Ringz. Tracy Chapman's new one finds the folk-rock singer/songwriter optimistic about Our Bright Future. This week's holiday greetings come from Enya.

Mark Saleski manages to name-drop everyone from Lynyrd Skynyrd to Terry "Seasons In The Sun" Jacks in his pick for this week. But first, NAR is pleased to welcome Tom Johnson back into the fold to talk about that huge new boxed set from the early, prog-rock era of Genesis.

Tom Johnson's Taster's Choice: Genesis – Box Set 3 (1970-1975)

1970-1975 was one of the most creative, if not weird, periods of musical history, and that goes for Genesis as well. The most artistically exciting material of the band's career, which is all covered on Box Set 3 (1970-1975), was produced during these years. Even if this music wasn't the most commercially profitable, Box Set 3 (1970-1975) will likely be the most successful Genesis box, because this is the one the die-hards have been waiting for.

Covering the first five albums with Peter Gabriel at the helm (Trespass, Nursery Cryme, Foxtrot, Selling England By The Pound, and The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway), and including DVDs for each album, it is a hefty 13-disc set. Maybe as a die-hard fan, you balk and say, "I know this music like the back of my hand." Flip your hand over; do you know the front of your hand so well? See? Check it out thusly:

Like the other sets, it is not just remastered but remixed from the original master tapes – guaranteed to be Gabriel-era Genesis as never before heard. It's revisionist history at its best – it sounds as if every attempt was made to serve the original style of music as well as possible, but to make the instruments shine in ways not possible in the '70s. But wait, there's more! What fans are clamoring for are the surround-sound and hi-rez audio included on the DVDs, which are also packed with new band interviews and, in some cases, old concert footage where it exists. Plus, there's a bonus CD with singles, BBC tracks, and the long-awaited "Genesis Plays Jackson" material. Tell me you aren't already sitting there with your wallet out, ready to order. You're checking out the front of your hand, I can tell.

Saleski's Choice: Vance Gilbert – Up On Rockfield

Back in the late '80s, we took a poll at work, attempting to determine the worst pop song ever recorded. This was a very unscientific poll as somebody scribbled the topic onto a whiteboard in a public hallway. After about a week, when nobody had updated the board for a couple of days, the list was considered 'fixed' and the voting commenced. In the end, two songs were left standing: "The Night Chicago Died" by Paper Lace, and "Seasons In The Sun" by Terry Jacks. The 'winner' was Terry Jacks. I'm pretty sure I voted for Paper Lace.

None of this has to do with my pick of the week except that I happened to see that Seasons In The Sun is being reissued this week. Really? A person would actually purchase and listen to that record? Yeesh!

OK…Vance Gilbert and Up On Rockfield. This is a concept album of sorts, with Vance writing songs as if he was somebody else. For example, one tune was written as if Lynyrd Skynyrd collaborated with Al Jareau. Gilbert explained this concept at a show a while back in his usual hilarious manner and I've been looking forward to the album ever since. It might sound like a gimmick but, believe me, Gilbert has the vocal and musical chops to pull it off.

Here are all of this week's new album releases courtesy of All Music Guide:

Christina Aguilera
Keeps Gettin' Better: A Decade of Hits
Pop, Teen Pop, Pop/Rock, Dance-Pop, Urban, Neo-Soul, Contemporary R&B, Adult Contemporary

Cheap Trick
At Budokan: 30th Anniversary Collectors Edition [3CD/1DVD]
Album Rock, Arena Rock, Pop/Rock, Power Pop, New Wave, Early Pop/Rock, Hard Rock

The Flaming Lips
Christmas on Mars
Warner Bros.
Noise Pop, Dream Pop, Neo-Psychedelia, Experimental, Alternative Pop/Rock, Experimental Rock, Original Score

New Order
Movement [Collector's Edition]
Dance-Rock, College Rock, Post-Punk, Club/Dance, Synth Pop

Taylor Swift
Big Machine
Contemporary Country, Country-Pop

Thr33 Ringz
Urban, Pop-Rap

David Archuleta
David Archuleta
Pop, Teen Pop, Adult Contemporary

Sara Bareilles
Between the Line: Sara Bareilles Live at Fillmore
Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, Pop/Rock, Singer/Songwriter

Natasha Bedingfield
Pocketful of Sunshine [Bonus DVD]
Teen Pop, Dance-Pop, Adult Contemporary

The Boxmasters
Christmas Cheer
Christmas, Alternative Country

Colbie Caillat
Coco [Deluxe Edition]
Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, Pop/Rock, Contemporary Singer/Songwriter

Tracy Chapman
Our Bright Future
Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, Alternative Folk, Contemporary Folk

Full Fathom Five: Audio Field Recordings 2007-2008
Alternative Metal, Heavy Metal

Kevin Costner & Modern West
Untold Truths
Universal South
Heartland Rock, Americana, Country-Rock

Deborah Cox
The Promise
Contemporary R&B

Dennis Russell Davies
Anthony Davis: Amistad
New World
Contemporary Opera

Hilary Duff
Best of Hilary Duff
Teen Pop, Dance-Pop, Pop/Rock

The Death of Adam
Underground Rap, Hardcore Rap, Alternative Rap

And Winter Came
Contemporary Celtic, Ethnic Fusion, Adult Alternative, Celtic New Age, Holiday, Christmas, Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, Celtic Pop, Contemporary Instrumental

Thierry Fischer
Honegger: Une Cantate de Noël; Horace Victorieux
Hyperion UK
Modern Music for Voices, Chorus & Orchestra

Genesis 1970-1975
Prog-Rock/Art Rock, Album Rock

Beres Hammond
A Moment in Time
Dancehall, Lovers Rock

Enrique Iglesias
Greatest Hits
Pop, Adult Contemporary, Latin Pop, Dance-Pop

Bill Ives
Duruflé: Requiem, Op. 9 [Hybrid SACD]
Harmonia Mundi Franc
Modern Music for Voices, Chorus & Organ

Jean on Jean
Jean on Jean
Indie Pop

Jurassic 5
Jurassic 5 EP [11th Anniversary CD/DVD]
Underground Rap, Hip-Hop

Little River Band
One Night In Mississippi
Scream Marketing
Pop/Rock, Soft Rock, Adult Contemporary

Live at the Paradiso Amsterdam
Action Front/Vanguard
Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, Alternative Pop/Rock

Love Is All
A Hundred Things Keep Me Up at Night
What's Your Rupture
New Wave/Post-Punk Revival, Indie Pop

Microhouse, Club/Dance

Andrea Marcon
Vivaldi: Concertos for Two Violins
Archiv Produktion
Baroque Music for 2 Violins & Orchestra

Mudcrutch Extended Play Live
Country-Rock, Rock & Roll

New Order
Brotherhood [Collector's Edition]
Dance-Rock, College Rock, Alternative Dance, Alternative Pop/Rock, Club/Dance, Synth Pop

New Order
Low-life [Collector's Edition]
Dance-Rock, College Rock, Alternative Dance, Alternative Pop/Rock, Synth Pop, Club/Dance

New Order
Power, Corruption & Lies [Collector's Edition]
Dance-Rock, College Rock, Alternative Dance, Alternative Pop/Rock, Synth Pop, Club/Dance

New Order
Technique [Collector's Edition]
Dance-Rock, College Rock, Alternative Dance, Alternative Pop/Rock, House, Club/Dance, Synth Pop

Liping Zhang
EMI Classics
Romantic & Post-Romantic Music for Voice & Orchestra

Original Soundtrack
Rachel Getting Married [Soundtrack]
Original Score, Soundtracks

The Postmarks
Indie Pop

Cliff Richard
The 50th Anniversary Album
EMD Int'l
Early Pop/Rock, Adult Contemporary, Soft Rock, Teen Idol, Pop/Rock

Warner Bros.
Neo-Soul, Adult Contemporary

The Sight Below
Ghostly International
Experimental Ambient, Ambient Techno

Six Feet Under
Death Rituals
Metal Blade
Heavy Metal, Death Metal/Black Metal

The Smiths
The Sound of the Smiths
College Rock, Indie Pop, Alternative Pop/Rock

23 Skidoo
Just Like Everybody [LTM]
Post-Punk, Experimental, Industrial

23 Skidoo
Seven Songs [LTM]
Post-Punk, Experimental, Industrial

23 Skidoo
Urban Gamelan
Experimental, Industrial

Various Artists
The Best of Now That's What I Call Music! 10th Anniversary
Pop, Pop/Rock, Dance-Pop, Pop-Rap

Various Artists
Hit Man: David Foster and Friends
Warner Bros.
Film Music, Adult Contemporary, Orchestral Pop, Contemporary Instrumental

Various Artists
Now, Vol. 29
Pop, Alternative Pop/Rock, Pop Idol, Urban, Southern Rap, Country-Pop

Butch Walker
Sycamore Meadows
Original Signal
Pop/Rock, Alternative Singer/Songwriter, Adult Alternative Pop/Rock

John Williams
Indiana Jones: The Complete Soundtracks Collection
Original Score, Film Music, Soundtracks

Warren Zevon
Warren Zevon [Collector's Edition]
Singer/Songwriter, Adult Alternative, Rock, Classic Rock, Folk/Rock

About Glen Boyd

Glen Boyd is the author of Neil Young FAQ, released in May 2012 by Backbeat Books/Hal Leonard Publishing. He is a former BC Music Editor and current contributor, whose work has also appeared in SPIN, Ultimate Classic Rock, The Rocket, The Source and other publications. You can read more of Glen's work at the official Neil Young FAQ site. Follow Glen on Twitter and on Facebook.

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