Avatar – Avatar Country CD/LP (Entertainment One)
“Contains the expected superior examples of how metal should and must sound today and for all eternity.” [Limited edition picture disc pressing also available.]
Big Star – Live At Lafayette’s Music Room-Memphis, TN CD+MP3/2xLP+MP3 (Omnivore)
It is well known that Big Star played a one-off promotional show for the Memphis Rock Writer’s Convention at Lafayette’s Music Room in Memphis in May of 1973. It cemented them into legendary status due to the writers who witnessed it and carried the message of Big Star out in their writing, even though the band had only released one album, #1 Record, and were unsure of recording a second after the departure of co-founder Chris Bell. What may not be so widely known is that the trio played the same venue four months earlier with the same power and passion opening shows for the Houston R&B band, Archie Bell & The Drells.
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club – Wrong Creatures CD/2xLP (Vagrant)
“For all that Black Rebel Motorcycle Club have been consistent in their garage-road delivery since they broke out at the turn of the century/millennium, they have also not shied from experimenting. Temporarily drummer-less, 2005’s Howl was acoustic; there was also 2008’s instrumental The Effects of 333. Yet those could be considered one-off detours, so distinctly different and singular were they. For Wrong Creatures, BRMC slow things down and lengthen things out.” — QRO
Black Veil Brides – Vale CD/LP+CD (Republic)
Fifth album from L.A.-based goth/glam hard rock quintet.
Corrosion Of Conformity – No Cross No Crown CD/2xLP/Cassette (Nuclear Blast)
“It’s been a dozen years since C.O.C. recorded new material with vocalist/guitarist Pepper Keenan at the helm. In that time, there have been rumors, whispers and outright allegations that the legendary Southern rock outfit would reunite to blow the doors off the whole damn scene again. In 2014, after nearly a straight decade traversing the globe as a guitarist with New Orleans supergroup Down, Keenan reconnected with the core C.O.C. trio of Woody Weatherman, Mike Dean and Reed Mullin to hit the road hard and write and record the band’s highly anticipated tenth album, No Cross No Crown.” [Limited edition colored vinyl pressing also available.]
Anderson East – Encore CD (Atlantic/WEA)
The new album from acclaimed singer/songwriter Anderson East features 11 songs, including “All On My Mind” (written by Ed Sheeran, Johnny McDaid, East and Aaron Raitiere), “King For A Day” (written by East, Chris Stapleton and Morgane Stapleton), “Girlfriend” (written by East, Cobb, Raitiere and Tim Bergling) as well as renditions of songs by Ted Hawkins and Willie Nelson. Encore culminates a breakout series of years for East following his widely praised 2015 debut, Delilah, which NPR Music called “an eclectic, fully formed debut…” and The Wall Street Journal said is “…highlighted by Mr. East’s raw and raspy vocals and a backing band that channels the urgent rhythms and gospel-flavored sounds of ‘60s R&B and Southern soul music.”
Elbow – The Best Of Elbow CD/2xCD (UMe)
New collection curated by the band spanning 20 years. Features Elbow’s cover of The Beatles’ “Golden Slumbers,” as featured on the John Lewis Christmas ad, as a bonus track. Available in Regular single-disc and Deluxe double-disc editions.
Leaves Eyes – Sign Of The Dragonhead CD/2xCD/LP (AFM)
One of the most successful bands in the symphonic metal genre returns with their seventh album. [CD is available in Regular and Deluxe editions. Deluxe adds bonus tracks and instrumental versions. Two limited edition colored vinyl pressings are also available: one green, the other white.]
Joe Satriani – What Happens Next CD/2xLP (Sony Legacy)
What Happens Next features a power trio of Satriani on guitar along with Deep Purple/Black Country Communion bassist Glenn Hughes and Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith, the latter reuniting with Satriani for the first time since their work in the supergroup Chickenfoot with former Van Halen vocalist and bassist Sammy Hagar and Michael Anthony. This unparalleled rock rhythm section gives the all-instrumental What Happens Next a depth of groove that sets it apart from Satriani’s other work.
Umphrey’s McGee – It’s Not Us CD/2xLP (Nothing Too Fancy)
Umphrey’s McGee entered I.V. Labs Studio in Chicago in November of 2016 to record what would become the band’s eleventh full-length studio album. The result was It’s Not Us, the most vibrant, mature expression of the band’s growing studio prowess to date. “We decided to go in for a week, live, eat, and breathe Umphrey’s McGee,” recalls Joel Cummins. “We’re known as a strong live band, but we take so much pride in our writing. [In this album] the focus is on that writing.” The first single “The Silent Type” is powered by a bombastic beat, funkified rhythms, fiery fretwork, and a chantable refrain.
This Week’s Vinyl Exclusives:
Brett Dennen – Brett Dennen  LP (Dualtone Music Group)
Brett Dennen is a modern-day troubadour with one foot tapping to the tradition of Woody Guthrie and the other foot in step with his social and political convictions. This is the first vinyl pressing of Dennen’s ground-breaking self-titled debut album, originally released in 2004.
Dio – Holy Diver [Reissue/1983] LP (Rhino)
Dio – Last In Line [Reissue/1984] LP (Rhino)
Remastered colored vinyl reissues of Dio’s first two albums.
Lil Uzi Vert – Luv Is Rage 2 2xLP+MP3 (Atlantic)
Philadelphia rap pioneer Lil Uzi Vert flaunts a vision and fashion sense just as loud as his “futuristic trap” sound and dynamic voice. Luv Is Rage 2 serves as the rising hip-hop star’s official full-length debut following a handful of name making mixtapes and features guest appearances from The Weeknd, Oh Wonder and Pharrell Williams.
The Notorious BIG – Big Poppa [Reissue/1994] 12” (Bad Boy)
The Notorious B.I.G. – Hypnotize [Reissue/1997] 12” (Bad Boy)
Limited colored vinyl reissues.
Panda Bear – Day With The Homies 12” (Domino)
The Animal Collective co-founder’s first solo music since 2015’s Panda Bear Meets The Grim Reaper and Crosswords EP. “I hoped to make something without frills or much embellishment, principally because I’ve found more fluff tends to equal less power,” Lennox says in his introduction to the EP. “Since the juiciest action is entirely focused in the deeper zones of the frequency spectrum (at least from where I’ve sat), power was key.” He adds, “The songs aren’t lyrically linear or narrative as such, though I did scatter pieces of longer-chewed themes across the tracks.”
Rolling Stones – Exile On Main Street [Reissue/1972] 2xLP (Interscope)
Limited double 180gm half-speed mastered vinyl LP repress.
Various Artists – Sun Records Does Hank Williams LP (ORG Music)
A collection of Hank Williams hits performed by artists from the legendary Sun Record Company catalog. The compilation features superstars Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis, alongside a handful of lesser-known Sun Records artists.
X-Ray Spex – Germfree Adolescents [Reissue/1978] LP (Real Gone Music)
Limited yellow with blue-green splatter edition of the English punk band’s classic debut.
ZZ Top – Rio Grande Mud [Reissue/1972] LP (Rhino)
ZZ Top – Tres Hombres [Reissue/1973] LP (Rhino)
Limited edition colored vinyl pressings.