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Amoebite Amoebite

, hollywood


Beneath The Eyrie (CD)

The 21st century incarnation of Pixies comes rip-roarin’ back with the mighty Beneath the Eyrie. Fuzzed out, wild, and unpredictable, on their latest, the band shows no sign of slowing down any time soon. The energy churned up by the band is totally bonkers; they seem determined to leave a sonic impact, rocking harder than they have in years and casually tossing off intriguing song scenarios with titles like “In the Arms of Mrs. Mark of Cain” and “On Graveyard Hill.” The ferocious and fascinating Beneath the Eyrie is a shot of pure adrenaline in CD format.

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Sweet Release (CD)

Sweet Release is keyboard/organ legend Reese Wynans' first solo effort after a long career of playing with everyone from Boz Scaggs to Joe Bonamassa to Duane Allman, not to mention Double Trouble with Stevie Ray Vaughan. Unsurprisingly, the album features many high-profile guest turns, such as Sam Moore who sings on the firey blues single “Crossfire,” to which Kenny Wayne Shepherd also lends his guitar chops. But overall, it is Wynans' versatility and restraint that gives the album its charm and spirit. This is perhaps most apparent on his closing piano version of Paul McCartney's “Blackbird.”

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Berserker (CD)

Gods of Viking metal Amon Amarth roar back onto the battle ground with the mighty Berserker. Taking its name from the most formidable human warriors in Norse mythology, the album is jam-packed with fierce dragons, sun-eating wolves and fearsome scenes of war. Berserker finds Amon Amarth branching out from their usual riff-heavy, riotous sound; though, of course, there’s plenty of head banging to be had, there are also moments of calm, pseudo-classical acoustic sections and even a string ensemble. Fans should find plenty to enjoy as the band pushes the envelope into uncharted sonic territory.

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III (CD)

Darker than their usual output, The Lumineers’ III is an impressive showcase of the band’s songwriting abilities. The album opens with the tender, sweetly sad “Donna,” an immediate attention-getter that ranks as one of the best and most intriguing folk pop songs of the year. By the time “Gloria” rolls around the band has returned somewhat to their rollicking, boot stomper melodies, although there’s still a definite undercurrent of sadness to this tale of love and addiction. “Salt and the Sea” will linger in the mind, thanks to its devastating melody and plaintive piano harmonies. An impressive step forward for the band, III is definitely one of The Lumineers’ best albums.

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House Of Sugar (CD)

(Sandy) Alex G’s House of Sugar is (pun intended) a real treat for fans of smart, cohesive, dreamy indie albums. “Hope” is a luminous, swooning jangle pop number that’s beautiful and bittersweet. “Southern Sky” is a gentle duet with a melancholy Elliot Smith vibe. ”Gretel” opens with a haunting, powerful intro and the emotional impact doesn’t let up over the course of the song. To get the full experience, this is an album that must be listened to in full — but what a delight it is to get lost in the world (Sandy) Alex G has created, again and again. Guaranteed to make you hit “repeat.”

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The Window (CD)

Two time Grammy winner Cecile McLorin Salvant teams up with acclaimed New Orleans pianist Sullivan Fortner for her latest, The Window. McLorin Savant’s velvety voice is a natural fit for these moody romantic numbers and her impressive vocal range certainly comes out to play. Listening to the album is an intimate experience, like sitting in a smoky, underground jazz club listening to the duo play their hearts out — for an audience of one. But isn’t that love? Expect sophisticated renditions of classics by Cole Porter, Rodgers and Hammerstein, Stevie Wonder, Bernstein/Sondheim, as well as an original French language composition by the gifted Ms. McLorin Salvant.

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You Won't Get What You Want (CD)

You Won't Get What You Want is the name of the latest LP from heavy rockers Daughters — perhaps it’s a nod to fans who were expecting more of the same from the manic Rhode Island quintet. Instead, the band serves up a brooding, sludged up foray into the realm of noise/experimental with bristling old school industrial menace. It’s a tour de force, thick with ominous riffs and simmering atmospherics. Daughters has the impressive ability to consistently evolve their sound in fittingly dark and aggressive ways and this most recent album stands as one of the highpoints in their dynamic career.

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Titanic Rising (CD)

Weyes Blood’s latest, Titanic Rising, is gorgeous, vulnerable, and deeply affecting. There has always been a melancholy and a gravitas to her music, but this latest album kicks those traits into high gear. After all, the songs were written in response to climate change, the hubris of man, and the quest for hope in spite of so much darkness. Yet, despite all these shadows, there’s a lightness and loveliness to it, enervated by Weyes Blood’s sparkling voice and Laurel Canyon-style-throwback melodies. Co-produced by Jonathan Rado of Foxygen, Titanic Rising is a lush, fragile dream of an album.

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Placeholder (CD)

Hand Habit's Meg Duffy sings about strained relationships on the lyrically anxious but musically soothing new album Placeholder. A well-crafted and lush indie singer/songwriter album that never drags, the songs contrast pleasing melodies with darker themes about losing connection with others and lost love. On “Can't Calm Down,” the sweet verses slide along on a steady beat and slip into a quietly catchy chorus. When strains of gritty electric guitar appear on the bridge of the title track, they are embedded in layers of Duffy's vocals, keeping to the overall warmth of the record.

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Fight The Good Fight (CD)

Fight the Good Fight is a joyful throwback to the ska-punk of the late '90s and early 2000s, complete with a guest turn by Rancid on “Got Each Other.” The album was also produced by Rancid's Tim Armstrong. With lyrics that deal with gravel-voiced singer Aimee Interrupter's rough childhood and search for connection, the band's songs are triumphant and upbeat, with tight musicianship and radio-friendly choruses such as on “She's Kerosene.”

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