Five New Albums Worth Your Dime

by mattdentler
October 2, 2010 2:00 AM
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1. Tired Pony, The Place We Ran From
(Featuring members of R.E.M., Snow Patrol, and Belle & Sebastian along with guest turns by Zooey Deschanel and M. Ward, this is a side project that feels natural. A group of UK rockers band together to make a rootsy country-rock record that still inhabits dark places and Gary Lightbody's unmistakable voice. This is Starbucks folk, but some of the best kind. In some ways, guitarist Peter Buck helps this sound like R.E.M., as if fronted by whiskey-coated brogue.)

2. Deerhunter, Halcyon Digest
(Atlanta indie-rockers keep up the melodic momentum of their last, and most accessible, LP. Halcyon Digest keeps the pop energy on a low burn, but it will keep you warm.)

3. Mark Ronson & The Business Intl, Record Collection
(For his latest LP, super producer Ronson enlists help from a team of new vocalists and makes a straightforward party record of great new songs. Featuring guest turns by Q-Tip, Simon LeBon, and more... this is a great album of high-energy dance/rap/rock.)

4. Maximum Balloon, Maximum Balloon
(TV on the Radio's Dave Sitek unloads this solo side project that features singers from his own band, plus Karen O, David Byrne, and a slew of newcomers. Like the Mark Ronson record, the genres bend, but on this one, the mood is dawn breaking or dusk settling.)

5. Neil Young, Le Noise
(Neil Young's latest album is something new: a sonic blast of audio manipulation, enveloping Young's acoustic/electric one-man band. Producer Daniel Lanois is the one offering up the drone and feedback, but the songs also shine through with drenched beauty.)

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