Category Archives: Music News

TOP TEN: Record Store Day, 2016

Viva la Vinyl.

Another RSDelight.

It’s another year, and another round of Record Store Day shopping is on the schedule today, April 16. The annual event is once again taking place all over the world, and the massive music fest is sure to bring out even more people than last year, so make it to your local store or stores early enough so that you don’t get caught behind the huge lines. With another diverse collection of exclusive CD and vinyl pieces across all genres and eras, there’s something for everyone, but quantities are limited.

In honor of the ninth national day, I’ve decided to highlight ten of my favorite vinyl-exclusive releases that you’ll be able to buy in stores very shortly. This year, I’m focused on more current releases and artists than last year, as you’ll see below. However, I may not be able to locate them all; indeed, the challenge is on. Searching high and low, far and wide, I’ll be on the hunt for great finds like these ten:

(Check out the full list of U.S. releases for RSD here.)

Florence + The Machine
10. FLORENCE + THE MACHINE – “Delilah” / “Only Love Can Break Your Heart” (Link)
Label: Republic
Format: 12″ single

Disturbed
09. DISTURBED – “The Sound Of Silence” (Link)
Label: Warner Bros.
Format: 12″ single

Andra Day
08. ANDRA DAY – Live! (Link)
Label: Buskin’/Warner Bros.
Format: 12″ EP

Jack Ü
07. SKRILLEX & DIPLO (as JACK Ü) featuring JUSTIN BIEBER – “Where Are Ü Now?” (Link)
Label: OWSLA/Mad Decent/Atlantic
Format: 12″ single

Madonna
06. MADONNA – Like A Virgin & Other Hits (Link)
Label: Warner Bros./Rhino
Format: 12″ EP

Talking Heads
05. TALKING HEADS / ECHOSMITH – “This Must Be The Place (Naïve Melody)” (Link)
Label: Warner Bros./Rhino
Format: 7″ single

Lukas Graham
04. LUKAS GRAHAM“7 Years” (Link)
Label: Warner Bros.
Format: 12″ single

Andrew McMahon In The Wilderness
03. ANDREW MCMAHON IN THE WILDERNESSThe Canyons EP (RSD First) (Link)
Label: Vanguard
Format: 10″ EP

Walk The Moon
02. WALK THE MOONYou Are Not Alone (Live At The Greek) (Link)
Label: RCA
Format: 2 x LP (album)

Bleachers
01. BLEACHERSTerrible Thrills, Vol. 2 (Link)
Label: RCA
Format: LP (album)

Are you looking forward to the RSD celebration and is there another cool release not listed here that you’ve got to buy? Let me know in the comments or on Facebook or Twitter: click the “Get Social!” tab above to find us on there.

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TURN IT UP MONDAY: What’s New In Stores This Week (December 15)

Rapping up the year.

Rapping up the year.

It’s the last big date for 2014, and though the releases are few this week, there’s still something for everyone. (NOTE: some of the week’s music releases may not be out until Tuesday dependent on label availability/iTunes response time.) Here are the albums and singles that are new in stores for the week of December 15:

  • Sometimes it takes an “Anaconda” to slither up the charts and make an impact. Rapper and singer Nicki Minaj is in that jungle of jams once again with an Urban radio hit called “Only” and a brand new album called The Pinkprint, her first in two years. Though she’s lost some ground with the pop crowd as a main credited act lately, her core audience will come out for this and another top five album is likely once again. (iTunes)
  • In perhaps the one of the biggest surprises of this late Q4 season, R&B singer, songwriter and producer D’Angelo is back on track and coming out with his first studio set since 2000. Credited to he and a backing band, The Vanguard, Black Messiah is being released through his new home, RCA Records. A single titled “Really Love” is due at radio on Monday. Get ready for what could be a blockbuster. (iTunes)
  • Coming off two solid performances on Saturday Night Live, pop starlet Charli XCX brings some attitude to the pop world with her album titled SUCKER. It contains the single “Boom Clap”, featured on the soundtrack to The Fault In Our Stars, and current release “Break The Rules”. Originally due in mid-October, the singer should have a nice sales bump before Christmas. (iTunes)
  • One would be content if an act released three EP’s and a full studio album in a given year, right? Australian boy band 5 Seconds Of Summer disagrees with this and is now out with LIVESOS, an album full of songs recorded on their recent tour. It features a cover of “What I Like About You”, the group’s current radio single. (iTunes)
  • Other releases out this week include: Grizfolk‘s From The Road (EP) (iTunes), James Blunt‘s Smoke Signals (EP) (iTunes), Starbomb‘s Player Select (iTunes), YG‘s Blame It On The Streets (iTunes) and the following Various Artists film soundtracks: The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies (iTunes) and Into The Woods (iTunes).

New digital-only singles that you can buy this week include:

  • “American Beauty American Psycho”, a pre-release single from Fall Out Boy. (iTunes)
  • “It Ain’t You”, new from former American Idol champ Jordin Sparks. (iTunes)
  • “Just Kids”, a pre-release single from Mat Kearney. (iTunes)
  • “Lampshades On Fire”, the return single from rockers Modest Mouse. (iTunes)
  • “Let Me Down Easy”, another single from singer/songwriter Max Frost. (iTunes)
  • “The Wrong Year”, new from The Decemberists. (iTunes)
  • “Yours”, a pre-release single from Ella Henderson. (iTunes)

After some holiday cheer and time to rejuvenate, the normal schedule returns for the week of January 13 when releases by newcomers Fences and Meghan Trainor hit store shelves. Until then, my annual Top 100 of 2014 will be going up here on PGTC. Have a great few weeks and enjoy the countdown!

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TURN IT UP TUESDAY: What’s New In Stores This Week (December 9)

"Something" for the top ten.

“Something” for Billboard’s top ten.

There’s nothing like music as a present for the holidays, and if you’re looking for a few last-minute selections to stuff some stockings, notable Country and R&B releases are arriving just in time, among others. Here’s what albums and singles are in stores for the week of December 9:

  • Celebrating her many years of success on the Country survey is former American Idol winner and current superstar Carrie Underwood and her Greatest Hits: Decade #1 compilation. The two disc album features her recent top ten “Something In The Water”, several unreleased demos, and, of course, all of the big hits. It has a slightly higher price tag given the amount of material, but it should still make a good impact, especially physically. (iTunes)
  • With perhaps the wild card of this week’s schedule is rapper/singer J. Cole and his third studio album, 2014 Forest Hills Drive. No singles were released prior to the album’s release date, though “Apparently” will go to Rhythm radio and “GOMD” to Urban radio today. Both of his prior sets have sold north of 200,000 copies in their first frame: can this accomplish the same feat? We’ll see soon. (iTunes)
  • Climbing up the top 30 at Urban radio with “Love ‘Em All”, singer and reality TV star K. Michelle returns with her latest album, Anybody Wanna Buy A Heart? It follows Rebellious Soul, which debuted in the runner-up position on the Billboard 200 last year. This set should put her back in the top ten on the big list. (iTunes)
  • Other releases out this week include: Angels & Airwaves‘s The Dream Walker (iTunes), Bastille‘s VS. (Other People’s Heartache, Pt. III) (iTunes), Cracker‘s Berkeley To Bakersfield (iTunes), E-40‘s Sharp On All 4 Corners (iTunes), Johnny Gill‘s Game Changer (iTunes) and the Smashing Pumpkins‘s Monuments To An Elegy (iTunes).

New digital-only singles that you can buy this week include:

  • “Honest”, a new single from Kodaline. (iTunes)
  • “Like That”, new from the duo Jack & Jack featuring Skate Maloley. (iTunes)
  • “Under The Influence”, a pre-release single from Elle King. (iTunes)

Next week marks the last big release date of 2014, this time on Monday, with albums by Charli XCX and Nicki Minaj in the mix. We’ll see you on Sunday night for the full musical menu.

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TURN IT UP TUESDAY: What’s New In Stores This Week (December 2)

This album looks HU/GE.

This album looks HU/GE.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year… to Rock out, of course. I hope Santa has a few extra guitars and amplifiers on the sleigh for all the good little boys and girls. Here’s what albums and singles are in stores for the week of December 2:

  • In 2008, those Aussie legends AC/DC debuted atop the album chart with a huge total for Black Ice, their first set to do so with Columbia Records. Their latest studio album for the label is Rock Or Bust, which may also hit the #1 spot (with a smaller total than their comeback from six years ago, of course.) For a band that’s been recording for nearly four decades with many a classic tune, that is pretty rockin’. Single “Play Ball” is still top ten on Active Rock radio. (iTunes)
  • An album leak over a month ago isn’t stopping R&B star Mary J. Blige from carrying on with the promotion of her latest set, The London Sessions. As the title says, it was recorded in England this past summer. Multiple singles have been serviced to radio from it: there is “Right Now” at CHR, “Therapy” at Hot AC and “Whole Damn Year” at Urban and Urban AC. Given her track record on the Billboard 200, a top ten debut is likely again. (iTunes)
  • My favorite release of the week, as you probably know, is from the Ohio group Walk The Moon. They have a hot album in stores with Talking Is Hard. It features the single “Shut Up And Dance”, which just reached the top spot on my personal chart and continues to build nicely at Alternative radio. Sale pricing has been huge with this one; where it lands is anyone’s guess. (iTunes)
  • Other releases out this week include: Avicii‘s The Days/Nights (EP) (iTunes), She & Him‘s Classics (iTunes), Sundy Best‘s Salvation City (iTunes), Willie and Bobbie Nelson‘s Willie’s Stash, Vol. 1: December Day (iTunes) and Wu-Tang Clan‘s A Better Tomorrow (iTunes).

New digital-only singles that you can buy this week include:

  • “Bed On Fire”, a new pre-release single from Butch Walker. (iTunes)
  • “Breaking Up”, the latest digital single from Charli XCX. (iTunes)
  • “Right Where You Are”, new from the pop duo Jack & Jack. (iTunes)
  • “Spark The Fire”, the followup to “Baby Don’t Lie” for singer Gwen Stefani. (iTunes)
  • “Tunnels”, a pre-release single from Angels & Airwaves. (iTunes)

A greatest hits compilation from Country star Carrie Underwood and a studio album from R&B singer K. Michelle top next week’s release schedule, but can they compete with the top-selling Q4 favorites like Pentatonix and Taylor Swift? Those releases and more are coming on Monday night.

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TURN IT UP MONDAY: What’s New In Stores This Week (November 24)

The gals of Q4.

The gals of Q4.

Black Friday is a few days away, which means the usual deals and steals are here. Get your wallets ready, kids. (NOTE: some of this week’s music releases may not be out until Tuesday dependent on label availability / iTunes response time.) Here are the albums and singles in stores for the week of November 24:

  • Said the industry to its superstars, do you smell what I smell? Ah, yes, that would be the scent of rereleases shining on the schedule this week, along with a few hits compilations. For reissues, Beyoncé‘s Beyoncé (Platinum Edition) tacks on two new tracks, several remixes and a series of live performances, while Iggy Azalea‘s Reclassified pairs the tried and true “Fancy” and “Black Widow” with new tunes like the current single “Beg For It”. (Beyoncé – iTunes) (Azalea – iTunes)
  • For all you greatest hits enthusiasts, Eminem and his music pals head into stores with Shady XV, which includes one disc of new music and a second disc featuring some of the label’s classic cuts over the past fifteen years. Also new this week: Selena Gomez‘s For You, her final release for Hollywood Records before her move to Interscope. The young singer’s set features “The Heart Wants What It Wants” and her big singles. (Eminem – iTunes) (Gomez – iTunes)
  • Looking at some strong pre-order sales, the latest album from popular French DJ and producer David Guetta is out, Listen. It includes a number of interesting duets, as well as “Dangerous”, his recent single with singer Sam Martin. It should at least debut in the top ten, though top five isn’t out of the question yet. (iTunes)
  • Other releases out this week include: deadmau5‘s 5 Years of mau5 (iTunes), Elevation Worship‘s Wake Up The Wonder (iTunes), Paramore‘s Paramore (Deluxe) (iTunes), Pitbull‘s Globalization (iTunes), Rick Ross‘s Hood Billionaire (iTunes), Soundgarden‘s Echo Of Miles: Scattered Tracks Across The Path (iTunes), Tokio Hotel‘s Kings Of Suburbia (iTunes) and the Epic Records compilation I’ll Be Home For Christmas (iTunes).

New digital-only singles that you can buy this week include:

  • “Santa Tell Me”, a new holiday single from Ariana Grande. (iTunes)
  • “Stuck On A Feeling”, new from Prince Royce and Snoop Dogg. (iTunes)

AC/DC and Mary J. Blige top next week’s (lighter) Tuesday schedule, but don’t forget about Walk The Moon too! Find out more next Monday night.

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TURN IT UP MONDAY: What’s New In Stores This Week (November 17)

Four better or worse.

Four better or worse.

There’s only one direction that these overall sales are going… up! Q4 is in full effect with several six figure openings on tap for this batch of new releases. (NOTE: some of this week’s music releases may not be out until Tuesday dependent on label availability/iTunes response time.) Here’s what albums and singles are in stores for the week of November 17:

  • From “Steal My Girl” to “Night Changes” and all the instant grat tracks still on the charts, One Direction has a nice thing going for them in promoting their latest set, FOUR. The English quintet’s had two consecutive albums sell over 500,000 copies in the first week — will this be their third? Hard to tell at this point, but you know that another #1 on the Billboard 200 is a lock. (iTunes)
  • With their first album since 2011, Canadian rockers Nickelback are back in stores with No Fixed Address, released on the band’s new label, Republic. Single “Edge Of A Revolution” leaped to #1 on the Active Rock survey, but “What Are You Waiting For?” has stalled out in the 20’s at Hot AC. Look for this to land in the top five. (iTunes)
  • Singer and songwriter Lorde is credited as the curator for the soundtrack to the upcoming blockbuster The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Pt. 1. The set includes four songs by or featuring the teen star, as well as acts like Charli XCX, Tinashe, Tove Lo and others. This could also crash the top five on the chart. (iTunes)
  • Serving up a multi-disc compilation that spans his decades of rich music is the legend himself, David Bowie, now in stores with Nothing Has Changed. Each edition of it features a different cover of him looking into the mirror during a different album era. It’s a great gift for hardcore fans. (iTunes)
  • Other releases out this week include: 5 Seconds Of Summer‘s Good Girls (EP) (iTunes), Bruce Springsteen‘s The Album Collection, Vol. 1 (1973-1984) (iTunes), Bryan Ferry‘s Avonmore (iTunes), Depeche Mode‘s Live In Berlin (iTunes), In This Moment‘s Black Widow (iTunes), Kristin Chenoweth‘s Coming Home (iTunes), Trisha Yearwood‘s PrizeFighter: Hit After Hit (Amazon), TV On The Radio‘s Seeds (iTunes), Wilco‘s Alpha Mike Foxtrot: Rare Tracks 1994 – 2014 (iTunes) and the following Various Artists compilations: Annie: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (iTunes), Christmas At Downton Abbey (iTunes), Punk Goes Pop, Vol. 6 (iTunes) and The Art Of McCartney (iTunes).

New digital-only singles that you can buy this week include:

  • “Different Colors”, a pre-release single from Walk The Moon. (iTunes)
  • “Flight”, new from pop/rockers Lifehouse. (iTunes)
  • “Text Me Merry Christmas”, a new holiday single from Straight No Chaser and Kristen Bell. (iTunes)
  • “Wrapped Up”, a collaboration from Olly Murs and Travie McCoy. (iTunes)

See you next Sunday night with new releases from David Guetta, Eminem, Rick Ross, Selena Gomez and more!

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TURN IT UP MONDAY: What’s New In Stores This Week (November 10)

"Something" to contend for #1.

“Something” to contend for #1.

We have some Fighters battling for the top spot on the chart this week… if only these five can resist the urge to travel back to 1989. (NOTE: some of this week’s music releases may not be out until Tuesday dependent on label availability/iTunes response time.) Here’s what albums and singles are in stores for the week of November 10:

  • They roared back on iTunes and on Alternative radio with “Something From Nothing” and the hype is real for Sonic Highways, the latest album from the Foo Fighters. This is their first studio album since 2011’s Wasting Light, and as we know, it became the group’s first album to enter at #1 on the Billboard 200. If a certain Swift seller can slow it down a bit, then this will surely be their second to do it. (iTunes)
  • It wasn’t the best look for Garth Brooks when a recent single titled “People Loving People” garnered a huge debut on the Country airplay chart and then stalled out just weeks later. However, he doesn’t seem too down about it as he is in stores with a new album, Man Against Machine. Fans keep coming out for a Brooks set, new material or not, so expect this one near the top. (Amazon)
  • When he’s not showing some skin and transforming his image, Nick Jonas likes to record a tune or two. In fact, his new album, a self-titled release, is out this week. The lead single from it is “Jealous” and it currently stands at #11 on CHR radio. Though it won’t open as well as some of the later Jonas Brothers albums, it should land in the top five. (iTunes)
  • I’m not sure that the term “new Pink Floyd album” fully registers in 2014, but here we are with the group’s new set titled The Endless River. Most of it was completed by 1993, near the release of their last studio effort, The Division Bell. The pre-order count is strong, so maybe it will surprise when the numbers come out. (iTunes)
  • Other releases out this week include: Big K.R.I.T.‘s Cadillactica (iTunes), Bobby Shmurda‘s Shmurda She Wrote (EP) (iTunes), BØRNS‘s Candy (EP) (iTunes), Damien Rice‘s My Favourite Faded Fantasy (iTunes), G-Unit‘s The Beauty Of Independence (EP) (iTunes), Hail Mary Mallon‘s Bestiary (iTunes), Machine Head‘s Bloodstone & Diamonds (iTunes), Queen‘s Forever (iTunes), Röyksopp‘s The Inevitable End (iTunes), The New Basement Tapes‘s Lost On The River (iTunes), Whitney Houston‘s Her Greatest Performances (Live) (iTunes) and the Zac Brown Band‘s Greatest Hits So Far… (iTunes).

New digital-only singles that you can buy this week include:

  • “Paranoia”, new from singer/songwriter Max Frost. (iTunes)
  • “Uptown Funk”, a collaboration from producer Mark Ronson and singer Bruno Mars. (iTunes)

One Direction has more than Four reasons to be #1 next week (after all, there’s five of them in the band) and they will be facing some hot soundtracks from Annie and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Part 1 along the way. See you next Sunday for the full details… may the odds be ever in their favor.

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