Everclear, ‘Nutty Professor’ Soundtrack Top New Pop Releases

Debut albums from Beenie Man, Before Dark also hit stores.

A new album from rock band Everclear, and the soundtrack for “Nutty Professor II: The Klumps,” a collection of new songs from R&B and rap stars, top the list of pop releases hitting stores Tuesday.

Jay-Z, Janet Jackson, DMX, Eve and Eminem contribute to the soundtrack for the film “Nutty Professor II,” which stars Eddie Murphy and is due in theaters July 28.

The mix of new R&B, pop and hip-hop songs begins with Jackson’s “Doesn’t Really Matter,” a quick-pulsing love song co-produced by Jimmy Jam. Jay-Z, featuring Memphis Bleek & Amil, perform “Hey Papi” (RealAudio excerpt), with intricate production work from Timbaland, who co-wrote the song with Jay-Z.

Also on the soundtrack are Brian McKnight‘s “Thinkin’ Bout Me,” Redman and Eminem‘s “Off the Wall,” Eve‘s “Let Me Be” and “Thong Song Uncensored,” where Sisqó reinterprets his hit song with help from rapper Foxy Brown.

Rock trio Everclear go for a lighter sound than their previous rock records on Songs From an American Movie, Vol. 1/Learning How To Smile, the first of two albums the band plans for this year. The LP’s first single, “Wonderful” (RealAudio excerpt), held at #3 in its seventh week on the Billboard Modern Rock Tracks chart. Also on the record is a cover of Van Morrison‘s “Brown Eyed Girl” and the raucous “AM Radio” (RealAudio excerpt).

The band, whose most recent album was 1997′s So Much for the Afterglow, already is working on Songs From an American Movie, Vol. 2/A Good Time for a Bad Attitude. On that album, the band plans to return to a harder sound that’s more akin to their earlier recordings.

“What we do is very poppy at times, and then there’s a part of us that’s very noisy,” said lead singer Art Alexakis this spring.

Jamaican dancehall master Beenie Man, who reached #6 on the Billboard rap singles chart with 1998′s “Who Am I,” will release his major-label debut, Art and Life.

The album combines reggae with hip-hop on songs such as “Love Me Now,” which features production and vocals from rapper Wyclef Jean. R&B singers Kelis and Mya also make guest appearances on the album.

Teen trio Before Dark will release their debut album, Daydreamin’, a sugary blend of R&B harmonies and hip-hop beats on songs such as “Come Correct,” the LP’s first single.

Also releasing albums Tuesday are actor Keanu Reeves‘ band, Dogstar, with Happy Ending, and God Street Wine, with Good to the Last Drop.