My Chemical Romance:
“The Black Parade”
New Jersey “screamo” band My Chemical Romance follows up their 2004 major label album “Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge” with an epic concept disc produced by Rob Cavallo, who also produced Green Day’s “American Idiot.” The 13 tracks on “The Black Parade” include the current single “Welcome to the Black Parade” and a collaboration with Liza Minelli. The album evokes the agony of The Patient as he envisions his death in the form of a parade, which is the concept for the first single’s video. Besides being the title of the album, “The Black Parade” is also the name of the band’s alter ego, as seen in the video leading the parade wearing what looks like gothic soldiers’ uniforms.
Mars Volta: “Amputechture”
While all of their previous albums contained a narrative that unified each album, the Mars Volta’s current album “Amputechture” contains a series of different storylines that are disconnected but told in the same voice. “Amputechture” contains three songs that exceed 10 minutes. Guitarist John Frusciante of the Red Hot Chili Peppers contributes to the album and to the live shows as the two bands are currently touring the United States together. Like last year’s release, “Frances the Mute,” this album is produced by the band’s guitarist Omar Rodriguez-Lopez. While this album wasn’t praised for its experimental sound like the band’s 2003 debut album “De-loused in the Comatorium,” the Mars Volta continue to be a highly-acclaimed band for the fearlessness of their sound.
Australian band Jet sold 1.6 million copies in the United States of their last album “Get Born” in 2003. Songs like “Are You Gonna Be My Girl” and “Cold Hard Bitch” reached the commercial success of pop music. “Shine On” was produced by Dave Sardy the same producer of “Get Born.” The band’s latest single, “Put Your Money Where Your Mouth is” bears a similar sound to their previous hits, however, according to an interview with NME magazine, the album was affected by a tragedy. During the recording of this album, front man Nick Cester and drummer Chris Cester had to deal with the death of their father, who suffered from cancer.
The Killers’ highly-anticipated sophomore album “Sam’s Town” transforms the band from a glamorous, mascara-wearing, indie rock and roll band to rugged cowboys of the west, sporting mustaches and western ties. Recent reviews compare the sound of the new album to that of Depeche Mode and Bruce Springsteen, the latter due to the lyrics about roads, highways, and the Fourth of July. The latest single, “When You Were Young” is as catchy as “Mr. Brightside,” as he sings about highways, heartaches, Jesus and the devil. The album contains titles like “Bling (Confessions of a King),” “Enterlude” and “Exitlude,” which frame the album.
The musical talent of the members of Audioslave is undeniable however many critics of the latest album say their songs lack the creative lyrics of their collective former bands. This is the third album from Audioslave, following their 2005 album, “Out of Exile.” The album is more funk than rock music and the better songs are the ones that offer their different sound. “Revelations” was produced by Brendan O’Brien, who has worked with the band mates before. He worked on Soundgarden’s “Superunknown” and with Rage Against the Machine on “The Battle of Los Angeles.”
“Open Door” is the sophomore album for the goth-inspired rock band Evanescence. Expectations are high for this band, whose first album has sold over 14 million copies. The first single off their debut album, “Bring Me to Life” remained on the Billboard charts for a full year. However, reviews for the new album say that the absence of the band’s former guitarist, Ben Moody, is felt as their songs lack his unique guitar work.
?And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead: “So Divided” (Nov. 14)
A band best known for their heavy music and breaking equipment at the end of their performance will follow up their 2005 album “Worlds Apart” with “So Divided.” The new album will feature a guest appearance of singer Amanda Palmer of The Dresden Dolls. Several rumors and turmoil surround this album as the release date got pushed back from the original release date of Oct. 3. There are rumors involving a bitter battle between the band and Interscope Records. However, reports of the band leaving because of poor press were denied by the label.
The Scissor Sisters emerged from the New York electroclash scene in 2004 with their self-titled debut album. Their first album sold two and a half million in the U.K. but only sold a fraction of that in the United States. With this album they hope to gain mainstream audiences with their unique blend of pop, rock and disco beats. The glam group’s first single “I Don’t Feel Like Dancin'” was co-written by Elton John and his influence is clearly visible.
Beck is in an uncategorized musical genre of his own. He effortlessly blends pop, folk, hip hop and electronica styles into each of his records. In his new album, “The Information,” he packs 15 songs with bass grooves, acoustic instruments and Latin percussion. Longtime Radiohead producer Nigel Godrich adds electronic tones and textures that add to the songs. The album comes with a DVD that contains videos for each song, one of four limited edition sticker booklets and a blank CD cover so you could create your own CD cover with your art. The album is now available and already getting praise from critics. Hailed as one of his best albums, Beck has compiled an album with great music and his rhymes are perfect. Listen to the melodic track, “Think I’m In Love,” and you will fall in love with the album.
The Decemberists: “The Crane Wife”
This album is thematically based on a tragic Japanese folk tale. A poor man finds a crane in the woods and nurses it until it is able to fly away. A few days later, a woman arrives on the man’s doorstep. They fall in love and get married. They live in poverty and one day the woman convinces the man to sell a special cloth she will make as long as he doesn’t watch her making it. Curiosity and greed make the man sneak a peek and sees that she is the crane. When she sees him watching, she flies away and doesn’t return. Chris Walla of Death Cab for Cutie lends a hand on this album. The major album debut is expected to not sound like one and be widely accepted by the indie audience.
Plain White T’s:
“Every Second Counts”
Releasing their third major label album, the Plain White T’s are finally starting to create a buzz in Los Angeles. Their single “Hate” is one of the most played and requested singles on 106.7 KROQ. This pop-punk band has great melody and hooks. You can’t help but enjoy some of their songs, including their ballads. Their album is already out and is one that is recommended if you’re a fan of Jimmy Eat World and All American Rejects.
“When Your Heart Stops Beating”
While Tom broke away from Blink 182 to create his new and successful band, Angels and Airwaves, Mark and Travis went down their own road as well. Little is known about their new band, + 44. They have released the single, “No it Isn’t,” and will be releasing their album in November. Is the album going to tell us what happened to Blink 182? Probably not, but it is still worth a listen.