New Releases: Lloyd Banks, Brandy, The Cure, Lil' Wayne, Uncle Kracker, Burning Brides, Goodie Mob & More

A hot bundle of hip-hop and R&B releases heat up the first full week of summer.

This week's bundle of new releases is ruled by R&B and hip-hop heavy hitters.

G-Unit member Lloyd Banks has made appearances on albums by Eminem, 50 Cent, Mobb Deep and Mya and was crowned the 2003 Mixtape Artist of the Year — all before releasing an album of his own. We'll see what his future holds after his solo debut, The Hunger for More, lands this week.

Brandy's fourth album, Afrodisiac, was produced by Timbaland and Kanye West. The LP deals predominantly with losing love (her divorce) and finding it (her new boyfriend, L.A. Clipper Quentin Richardson) and how each has made her stronger. New Orleans rapper Lil' Wayne weighs in with his fourth studio effort, Tha Carter, which follows the former Hot Boy's last disc, 2002's 500 Degreez.

On the rock front, British goth legends the Cure release their 13th studio album — self-titled, oddly enough — which is the band's first release since 2000's Bloodflowers. Things are looking brighter for Uncle Kracker, who proclaimed in 2002 that he was No Stranger to Shame. The rocker, who cut his teeth on the turntables behind Kid Rock, releases Seventy Two & Sunny this week. Kid Rock acted as executive producer, while Kenny Chesney and Poison's Bret Michaels lend vocals to select tracks.

Philadelphia's Burning Brides release their second album, Leave No Ashes, the follow-up to 2001's Fall of the Plastic Empire; Concrete Blonde release Mojave, the follow-up to 2002's reunion disc, Group Therapy; and Canadian rock staple the Tragically Hip release their 10th album, In Between Evolution.

Also out this week are new releases from Orange County punk veterans the Vandals (Hollywood Potato Chips), New Jersey punks Midtown (Forget What You Know), Arizona punks Authority Zero (Andiamo), Detroit rappers Slum Village (Detroit Deli: A Taste of Detroit), and Sweden's the Concretes (The Concretes).

Out Tuesday, June 29:

  • Akon - Trouble (Universal)

  • Alexisonfire - Watch Out (Equalvision)

  • Atreyu - The Curse (Victory)

  • Authority Zero - Andiamo (Lava/Atlantic)

  • Baby Bash - Ménage a Trois (Empire Musicwerks)

  • Lloyd Banks - The Hunger for More (G Unit/Interscope)
    Read: "Lloyd Banks: Nipping at 50 Cent's Heels"

  • The Big Screen - Yours Today, Mine Tomorrow (Undecided/Victory)

  • Brandy - Afrodisiac (Atlantic)
    Read: "Brandy Album Preview: Singer Opens Up On Afrodisiac — Or Does She?"

  • Breaking Benjamin - We Are Not Alone (Hollywood)

  • Burning Brides - Leave No Ashes (V2)

  • Concrete Blonde - Mojave (Eleven Thirty)

  • Concretes - The Concretes (Astralwerks)

  • Cottonbelly - NYC Sessions 1993-2004: X Amounts of Niceness (Wrong/Red Dance)

  • The Cure - The Cure (I Am/Geffen)
    Buy Now: The Cure (I Am/Geffen)

  • Eric Darius - Night on the Town (Higher Octave)

  • Dave Matthews Band - Live at the Gorge (RCA)

  • Earshot - Two (Warner Bros.)

  • Emerson Drive - What If? (DreamWorks Nashville)

  • Forty-Fives - High Life High Volume (Yep Roc)

  • From First to Last - Dear Diary, My Teen Angst Has a Body Count (Epitaph)

  • Goodie Mob - One Monkey Don't Stop No Show (Goodie Mob/Koch)

  • IQ - Dark Matter (Inside Out)

  • Jing Chi - 3D (Tone Center)

  • Lafayette Gilchrist - The Music According to Lafayette Gilchrist (Hyena)

  • L'Arc en Ciel - Smile (Tofu/Red Ink)

  • Christopher Lawrence - All or Nothing (Kinky Beat/Pharmacy Electronic)

  • Ramsey Lewis Trio - Time Flies (Narada Jazz)

  • Lil' Wayne - Tha Carter (Universal)

  • Jesse Malin - The Heat (Artemis)

  • Eleni Mandell - Afternoon (Zedtone)

  • Marah - 20,000 Streets Under the Sky (PHIdelity/Yep Roc)

  • Melee - Everyday Behavior (Sub City)

  • Midtown - Forget What You Know (Columbia)

  • Kevin Moore - Ghost Book (Inside Out)

  • Mr. Complex - Twisted Mister (Raptivism)

  • Neurosis - The Eye of Every Storm (Neurot)

  • Joe Nichols - Revelation (Universal South)

  • Reverend Horton Heat - Revival (Yep Roc)

  • Chris Robinson & the New Earth Mud - This Magnificent Distance (Vector)

  • Nina Sky - Nina Sky (Universal)

  • Slum Village - Detroit Deli: A Taste of Detroit (Capitol)

  • Something for Kate - The Official Fiction (Red Ink)

  • Squad Five-0 - Late News Breaking (Capitol)

  • Stockholm Syndrome - Holy Happy Hour (Terminus)

  • Swingin' Utters - Live in a Dive (Fat Wreck Chords)

  • Gary Taylor - Eclectic Bohemian (Thump)

  • Tiger Army - III: Ghost Tigers Rise (Hellcat/Epitaph)

  • Time in Malta - Alone With the Alone (Equalvision)

  • The Tragically Hip - In Between Evolution (Zoë/Rounder)

  • Tres Chicas - Sweetwater (Yep Roc)

  • Umphrey's McGee - Anchor Drops (SCI Fidelity/Hanging Brains)

  • Uncle Kracker - Seventy Two & Sunny(Lava)
    Buy Now: Seventy Two & Sunny (Lava)

  • Unearth - The Oncoming Storm (Metal Blade)

  • Dave Van Ronk - ... And the Tin Pan Bended and the Story Ended ... (Smithsonian Folkways)

  • Vandals - Hollywood Potato Chips (Kung Fu)

  • Venomous Concept - Retroactive Abortion (Ipecac)

  • Bobby Watson - Horizon Reassembled (Palmetto)

  • Keller Williams - Stage (SCI Fidelity/KW Enterprises)

  • Ray Wilson - The Next Best Thing (Inside Out)

  • Dwight Yoakam - Dwight's Used Records (Koch)

  • Various artists - "America's Heart & Soul" soundtrack (Hollywood)

  • Various artists - BET Award '04 Nominees (UTV/UME)

  • Various artists - "CSI: Miami" soundtrack (Hip-O/UME)

  • Various artists - Hopelessly Devoted to You Vol. 5 (Hopeless)

  • Various artists - "Edgeplay: A Film About the Runaways" soundtrack (Hip-O/UME)

  • DVD: Pato Banton & Reggae Revolution - Spreading the Good News Live (Music Video Distributors)

  • DVD: Hammerfall - One Crimson Night (2003) (Nuclear Blast)

  • DVD: Kris Kristofferson - Breakthrough (Oh Boy)

  • DVD: Placebo - Soulmates Never Die - Live in Paris 2003 (Astralwerks)

  • DVD: Threshold - Critical Energy (Inside Out)

July 6:

July 13:

  • Jimmy Buffet - License to Chill (RLG)

  • Roots - The Tipping Point (Geffen)

  • They Might Be Giants - Spine (Zoë)

July 20: