Popular Fall Hits
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9/25: Alt-J – An Awesome Wave (Atlantic)
PopMatters praises “the tension between the approachable and the unknown” which sets this album apart as the year’s strongest debut. Merging elements of dub, polyrhythmic pop and art-rock pretension into ultimately satisfying pop songs, the album just won England’s Mercury Prize for the nation’s best album.
10/2: The Amity Affliction – Chasing Ghosts (Roadrunner Records)
10/2: Sun Airway – Soft Fall (Dead Oceans)
10/9: Two Fingers – Stunt Rhythms (Big Dada Records)
10/9: Macklemore & Ryan Lewis – The Heist (Macklemore)
10/16: The Luyas – Animator (Dead Oceans)
This album defies easy descriptions. Animator’s first two singles, “Fifty Fifty” and “Montuno” showcase the band’s two divergent poles. The former is a surf-inflused nugget of relatively straightforward pop, while the latter borders on classical in its arrangement, eventually developing into light, soothing pop in the vein of Ivy’s “Thinking About You” over eight minutes.
10/16: Mac DeMarco – 2 (Captured Tracks)
10/23: The Amazing – Gentle Stream (Partisan Records)
10/23: Pig Destroyer – Book Burner (Relapse Records)
10/30: Lukid – Lonely at the Top (Werkdiscs)
10/30: Parkway Drive – Atlas (Epitaph)
Parkway Drive’s fourth album, the Australian metalcore band’s best shot yet at conquering the American market, features the ear-thrashing single “Dark Days.” Alternative Press writes: “Cohesive and engaging throughout, this is the sound of a band at their most fearless.”
10/30: Neurosis – Honor Found in Decay (Neurot Recordings)
10/30: The Soft Moon – Zeros (Captured Tracks)
10/30: The Coup – Sorry To Bother You (Anti / Epitaph)
11/6: Dirty Projectors – About to Die EP (Domino Recording Co.)
11/6: Mike Doughty – The Flip is Another Honey (Snack Bar)
The Soul Coughing alum spent the last decade building his reputation as a prolific songwriter itching to put his own spin on alternative rock. This self-produced covers album shifts that sound into overdrive as Doughty reworks music from John Denver (“Sunshine”) and Randy Newman (“Mankind”) among others.
11/13: Steve Hauschildt – Sequitur (Kranky / Carrot Top)
11/13: Roc Marciano – Reloaded (Decon Inc.)
11/13: The Weeknd – Trilogy (Universal Republic)
11/13: Guided By Voices – The Bears for Lunch (Guided By Voices)
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Because most Black Friday deals focus on big-ticket items rather than Blu-Ray releases, it’s a slow release week on the video front. But what’s coming out looks solid. Among the frontrunners: a Blu-Ray extravaganza celebrating the best of Quentin Tarantino on ten discs, HBO’s Game of Thrones’ first season receives the full Blu-Ray treatment, and Sly Stallone’s latest blockbuster hits your big screen.