These are some “mainstream” upcoming releases that I have gotten my grubby little paws on.
The White Stripes; Icky Thump: As I predicted, this would be a standout album. Although they have proved that they can write slick, commercially appealing songs (like on Elephant) they really have a blues background. This album sounds like Jack and Meg’s hardcore jam sessions and I am okay with that. Comparitively to their other albums, this one sounds most like De Stijl. I am totally in love with this and although it may be a premature evaluation, this may be at the top of my best of the year list. [actual release: June 19]
Listen to “Rag and Bone”. This is def the standout track. Meg and Jack do a call and response (I love her voice) and then the signature guitar riffs and hard drumming. I’m currently listening to this on repeat. AW, IT’S LIKE A MANSION IN HERE!
Here’s another: “Catch Hell Blues”
Kelly Clarkson; My December [ actual release: July 24] It’s no secret that despite my disdain for the mainstream, but I feel Breakway was a superb pop album. I think my copy of this album may be an unfinished demo, or maybe a version that is unmixed. Let’s hope so. None of the songs at this point jump out at me as memorable singles. Even the current “Never Again” isn’t wowing me. [The second I heard “Behind These Hazel Eyes” I knew it would one day be all over the radio]. Kelly has a great voice, but she seems to ready to jump into the “Since U Been Gone” formula, with a quieter verse and then a screaming chorus. [a technique Nirvana exploited their whole career, to much success] This puts a visible strain on her voice. My mother was a voice teacher, and I can hear her criticisms about KC’s singing: it’s more pop star singing than respectable singing. Here are the tracks that I think would make a good choice for upcoming singles.