Tryptophan from the Thanksgiving turkey must be having its drowsy effects on record stores this week, for it's one of the slowest of the year. And expect December to be all about rap and reissues.
There are just about a dozen new CDs hitting stores, the same number of DVDs and even fewer re-releases. Here's a little bit of lovin' for most of them:
Yo-Yo'ing: Ying Yang Twins' Chemically Imbalanced should score the highest debut this week — they opened at #2 on the Billboard albums chart the last time — unless they're bested by the Clipse's long-awaited, Star Trak-backed Hell Hath No Fury. Both discs have gone through some changes, incidentally: Chemically Imbalanced, which features Wyclef, was originally called 2 Live Crew. And Hell Hath No Fury, which sports spots by Pharrell and Slim Thug, has bounced around more times than a Harlem Globetrotter dribble.
And the Beats Go On: Also hitting rap racks is La' Chat's fourth CD, Bad Influence, on which the lady gets a boost from Yo Gotti, Gucci Manne and Gangsta Boo. Old pals Three 6 Mafia didn't offer their help, though, what with her having signed to Three 6 rival Yo Gotti's Inevitable Entertainment.
On outer fringes of the hip-hop front lies Dan the Automator's Dan the Automator Presents 2K7 Instrumentals, the speechless answer to September's Dan the Automator Presents 2K7. That one found the beatman tinkering with tracks by Ghostface, E-40 and Lupe Fiasco.
And on the rap-reissue side, there's Public Enemy's Beats and Places, the subtitle to which pretty much says it all: Soulpower of the Unleashed and Unreleased. That one boasts a 2002 version of "Do You Wanna Go Our Way???" from San Francisco's Fillmore, "If I Gave You Soul (What Would You Do With It?)" and a couple of versions of "Air Conditioning."
No Longer Incubating: If Incubus' Light Grenades don't explode on the charts, it should at least be the best-debuting rock release you'll see this week. The band's fifth effort includes the head-scratchingly named "Pendulous Threads" and "Paper Shoes."
My Fair Lady: Our Lady Peace get the career-overview treatment this week with A Decade, reminding fans that they've had more #1 rock singles in Canada than any band ever. Two new songs, "Kiss on the Mouth" and "Better Than Here," accompany the decade-old group's first-ever best-of disc.
Foo's Ball: Speaking of firsts, the Foo Fighters just eked out their first-ever concert recording in the form of Skin and Bones earlier this month. But rather than releasing it as a CD/DVD package, the band's making fans go the extra mile by putting out a sold-separately video of the same name this week. You'll find five additional songs that didn't make the CD on here instead: "On the Mend," "Still," "See You," "What If I Do" and "Ain't It the Life."
The Other Fu: California boogie men Fu Manchu are slipping out just 3,000 copies of Hung Out to Dry, an EP that's serving as a preview of sorts to next year's yet-untitled 10th full-length. This one has two tracks from that LP, plus the original "Never Again" and a cover of Van Halen's "D.O.A." But best of all, the EP comes with a 7-inch single and is packaged in a gatefold sleeve.
Jonesin' for Indies?: Never to be overlooked are a few under-the-radar releases also happening this week. The never-say-die Figgs celebrate nearly two decades of existence with Follow Jean Through the Sea, which has 10 tracks and, like Fu's upcoming LP, is also their 10th. Pop-rockers Johnny Action Figure Asks the Room to Please Stop Spinning with a new effort. It's got the sunny "Lose Our Face," melodic "(This Is How I Look) When I Laugh at Death" and Neil Young-esque "Your Fortune's Gonna Leave You."
Wrapping It Up With Reissues: Last but not least, a swab of re-releases are also making their way into the racks. David Gilmour's On an Island, which originally debuted on the Billboard albums chart top 10, is being beefed up with a bonus DVD. That finds the Pink Floyd guitarist running through six songs as part of the AOL Sessions in April, plus it's got a new rendition of now-deceased bandmate Syd Barrett's "Astronomy Domine," which Gilmour tracked at London's famed Abbey Road in August.
A new NRBQ DVD — this one with the Whole Wheat Horns — culls vintage material by the batty cult fave. "Derbytown: Live 1982" showcases 16 live recordings from a Louisville, Kentucky, gig. And Candlelight Records continues hailing doom deacons Electric Wizard with Pre-Electric Wizard Rarities 1989-1993.
Song Title of the Week:
"(This Is How I Look) When I Laugh at Death" from Johnny Action Figure's Asks the Room to Please Stop Spinning
· Clipse - Hell Hath No Fury (Star Trak) [Buy Now]
· Dan the Automator - Dan the Automator Presents 2K7 Instrumentals (Decon) [Buy Now]
· The Figgs - Follow Jean Through the Sea (Gern Blandsten)
· Fu Manchu - Hung Out to Dry (limited-edition EP with 7-inch; Liquor and Poker)
· Incubus - Light Grenades (Epic) [Buy Now]
· Johnny Action Figure - Asks the Room to Please Stop Spinning (DRP)
· Midlake - Milkmaid Grand Army EP (Basement Front)
· La' Chat - Bad Influence (Inevitable)
· Ying Yang Twins - Chemically Imbalanced (Collipark/TVT) [Buy Now]
· Various artists - "The Fountain" soundtrack (Nonesuch)
Notable Reissues and Archival Material:
· Electric Wizard - Pre-Electric Wizard 1989-1993 (Candlelight)
· David Gilmour - On an Island (special edition with DVD; Epic)
· Our Lady Peace - A Decade (Columbia)
· Public Enemy - Beats and Places (Slam Jamz)
· Beenie Man and Capleton - "Spade Promotion Presents Tune After Tune" (Fox Love)
· Carter the Unstoppable Sex Machine - "Splash It All Over" (Cherry Red)
· DJ Absolut - "The New Lifestyle" (Amalgam)
· Foo Fighters - "Skin and Bones" (RCA)
· John Hype and Beenie Man - "Chaka Chaka: John Hype - Beenie Inna Jungle: Special Edition" (Fox Love)
· NRBQ & the Whole Wheat Horns - "Derbytown: Live 1982" (MVD Visual)
· Psychobilly - "Behind the Music" (Cherry Red)
· Various artists - "Hustle Up Latino Volumen Dos: ¡Representando La Calle!"
· Various artists - "Super Mill Promotion Presents: Reggae's New Culture Generation" (Fox Love)
· Ciara - The Evolution (enhanced; LaFace) [Preorder]
· Lil Scrappy - Bred 2 Die, Born 2 Live (Reprise) [Preorder]
· Metallica - "The Videos: 1989-2004" (Warner Bros.)
· Gwen Stefani - The Sweet Escape (Interscope) [Preorder]
· Various artists - Eminem Presents the Re-Up (Shady) [Preorder]
· Various artists - "Fast Food Nation" soundtrack (Park the Van)
· Mary J. Blige - Reflections (A Retrospective) (Geffen) [Preorder]
· Fantasia - Fantasia (J) [Preorder]
· Ghostface Killah - More Fish (Def Jam) [Preorder]
· Taylor Hicks - Taylor Hicks (RCA) [Preorder]
· Bobby Valentino - Special Occasion (Def Jam) [Preorder]
· Young Jeezy - Thug Motivation 102: The Inspiration (Def Jam) [Preorder]
· Katharine McPhee - TBD (RCA)
· Mos Def - Tru3 Magic (Geffen)
· Nas - Hip-Hop Is Dead ... The N (Def Jam)
· Styles P - Time Is Money (Ruff Ryders)
· UGK - Underground Kingz (two CDs; Jive)