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Five New Albums Worth Your Dime

Five New Albums Worth Your Dime

1. Grand National, Kicking the National Habit
(This spellbinding duo is like the sound of The Police remixed by Air or M83. It’s deceptively crisp, like a summertime disco in the sun.)

2. T.I., King
(Like much of the nation, I haven’t seen T.I.’s starring role in ATL, but both John Pierson and Margaret Brown assure me it’s great. Meanwhile, the Atlanta rapper’s new album is a lengthy, but surprisingly strong, batch of thick Dirty South jams.)

3. Drive-By Truckers, A Blessing and A Curse
(And speaking of the Dirty South, the songwriting becomes more concise as this Alabama roots group carefully marries wistful country tunes and some newfound stadium-rock cred.)

4. Islands, Return to the Sea
(Just after the burst of new Montrealer bands seemed to be done, this seven-piece featuring members of the Unicorns and guest spots from members of Arcade Fire and Wolf Parade, is a great starter band for what the Montreal scene means. Disjointed indie-pop with an affinity for both orchestral rock and rap/punk.)

5. Neil Young, Living With War
(According to his camp, Neil Young wrote and recorded this record of 10 songs in just a few days. Add to that, the agitprop quality of it all, and you’d expect a well-meaning mess. Not at all. Punchy, powerful, and rock hard. This is a great Neil Young album.)

– “Where Eagles Have Been” by Wolfmother
(This Australian heavy metal band owes more to prog-rock pioneers in this hazy and immaculate stomper.)

– “Back Like That” by Ghostface Killah & Ne-Yo
(The radio edit of this song actually takes away from what the song is really about. Seek out the album cut, but either way, it’s a helluva song with a completely toxic chorus.)

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