Britney Spears And Backstreet Boys Battle Like It's 1999; Plus Avenged Sevenfold, Playaz Circle And More, In 'New Releases'

Also due Tuesday: new albums by Puscifer, Pack, Project Pat, Eagles; Smashing Pumpkins, Jonas Brothers, Joy Division reissues.

Halloween must have scared away Mario. The singer -- who is in the limelight with his touching [article id="1572353"]new MTV documentary[/article], "I Won't Love You to Death: The Story of Mario and His Mom," -- seemed to have settled on Tuesday (October 30) as the release date for his forever-delayed album, [article id="1557037"]Go[/article], which was originally due in November 2006. But after at least five previous postponements -- and despite what the album's Web site says -- it's been put on hold once again. It's now "due" December 11. So instead, you'll have to do your trick-or-treating to the sounds of another artist you may have heard of, one whose recent single "Gimme More" has a perfect chorus when it comes to candy ...

Britney's Back!: Spears has been the tabloids' #1 obsession in recent months, but her new album, Blackout, is probably going to have to hit that spot on the Billboard albums chart if she wants to keep her career out of the grave for good. As it turns out, she's actually been going in the opposite direction Mario has -- her album was originally pegged for November 13, but her label shifted it to October 30, allegedly due to online leaks. Lucky for Brit, Blackout has been drawing red-hot reviews, with The Associated Press going so far as to call it "her best work ever." But if you don't trust the press, maybe producer Danjahandz, who worked on the album, will convince you: "If you're a fan of Britney, you're going to love it," he [article id="1571813"]recently promised to MTV News[/article].

Backstreet Boys ... Are Back as Well!: Britney's most successful album ever was actually her debut, ... Baby One More Time, which went platinum 14 times after being released by Jive on January 12, 1999. A few months later, the same label put out one of the last hugely popular albums by another bubblegum-pop act: the Backstreet Boys' Millennium, which went platinum 13 times. That number definitely overshadows the weak single-platinum status of the group's most recent release, 2005's Never Gone, which didn't even peak at #1 on the Billboard albums chart. The group's fifth album, Unbreakable, is also its first [article id="1535035"]without Kevin Richardson[/article] -- although the rest of the gang [article id="1535168"]hasn't replaced him yet[/article] -- and also falls on the act's 10th anniversary. The Boys beefed up the effort for a deluxe edition, which has a pair of extra songs -- "Downpour" and "In Pieces" -- a poster and more. Fans should also be on the lookout for "There's Us," which only comes with copies being sold at Wal-Mart stores, and "Nowhere to Go," available on the Japanese edition.

(M.) Shadows' Fall: While Brit and Backstreet are among the biggest "TRL" stars of all time, Avenged Sevenfold made for an unlikely fave when [article id="1528181"]they topped the countdown last year[/article]. The guys shunned the teen love at the time, but they're still lapping up the mainstream, apparently: In a recent press release, frontman M. Shadows divulged that the band found inspiration in T.I. -- and even more jaw-dropping, Toby Keith -- for its new self-titled, self-produced album. Still, one would suspect they're still poppin' with Guns N' Roses too ... anyone else see the resemblance between their "It's So Easy" and Avenged's "Almost Easy"? At any rate, the heavily tatted hard-rockers have made sure their new effort is distinct by adding a bunch of incentives: Fans who preordered were treated to a limited-edition 7-inch picture disc featuring their cover of Pantera's "Walk." Beyond that, though, the group went batty for the Music Video Interactive version of the album -- it has pre-encoded MP3s for all the songs, make-your-own ringtones, a studio tour, an animated short and other features that amount to two hours of bonus material.

Rap Trio: Does Lil Wayne have a monthly guest-appearance quota or what? The ubiquitous Weezy is surfacing yet again on an album that doesn't belong: Playaz Circle's Supply & Demand. His spot on the group's "Duffle Bag Boy" has upped the anticipation for the release -- which is actually the first one by the duo, even though they've been around for 10 years. Making their second stab are the Pack, a three-member squad out of Berkeley, California, who were a You Hear It First act way back when. Their new set, Based Boys -- yet another Jive release happening this week -- features an assist from Too Short, who discovered them two years ago, on the onomatopoeically titled "Booty Bounce Bopper." Project Pat has twice as many releases as those the two aforementioned groups combined, but he is making a debut of sorts: His sixth album, Walkin' Bank Roll, is also his first for Koch. Three 6 Mafia crop up on "Don't Call Me No Mo," while UGK's Pimp C spots him on "Talkin' Smart."

Reissue Parade: It's no wonder artists' new releases are debuting so poorly these days -- fans probably aren't throwing down because of the inevitable deluxe editions that have been routinely cropping up a few months after the initial release. This time around, it's the Smashing Pumpkins and the Jonas Brothers who are guilty as charged. Billy Corgan and company unleashed their Zeitgeist in mid-July, but now comes a revised edition that has a full-length DVD documentary, titled "Inside the Zeitgeist," and three bonus cuts: "Ma Belle," "Stellar" and "Death From Above." The Jonas Brothers, on the other hand, just put out their second album in early August but are already chasing the self-titled effort with a deluxe edition that features two new songs -- including "We Come to Party," an exclusive duet with Miley Cyrus -- plus a DVD containing a full concert, four videos and photos.

Being more appropriately resurrected are a batch of Joy Division albums that are getting the expanded-reissue treatment this week to coincide with the recent release of "Control," the new documentary about ill-fated frontman Ian Curtis. The only two studio albums the band recorded, 1979's Unknown Pleasures and the following year's Closer, are getting bolstered with a second disc of unreleased live performances, as is the seminal post-punk band's 1981 rarities collection, Still.

Soundtrack Stew: Speaking of "Control," the soundtrack for the film is also happening this week, and it's got a few notable tracks. The Killers toss in a cover of Joy Divison's "Shadowplay," while portions of New Order's score for the movie is also included, as is a song performed by the movie's actors, who learned to play instruments so they could properly portray the band. Tracks by artists from that era, including Iggy Pop, the Velvet Underground and David Bowie, flesh out the disc. Also on the soundtrack front is the "30 Days of Night" musical accompaniment, which was crafted by ex-Air and Redd Kross drummer Brian Reitzell; and the "Bee Movie" soundtrack, which boasts Sheryl Crow's "Here Comes the Sun." But the soundtrack that really takes the cake this week is the one for the Bob Dylan biopic "I'm Not There." The two-disc set is more like a massive tribute album -- it features 34 songs, including Eddie Vedder's take on "All Along the Watchtower," a collaboration between Willie Nelson and Calexico for "Senor (Tales of Yankee Power)," plus performances by Ya La Tengo, Cat Power, Sonic Youth and loads more.

A Soaring Cost: As mentioned above, the Backstreet Boys are coaxing their fans to Wal-Mart by putting an extra track on the version of Unbreakable that the retail giant is selling. Taking that trend a leap forward are the Eagles, who, shocking, are making Long Road Out of Eden, their first studio album in almost three decades, available only through Wal-Mart and Sam's Club stores terrestrially. The double-disc set, which comes in environmentally friendly packaging, features 20 songs but retails for just $11.88. The fact that the MP3 download version on costs a buck less than that could explain the partnership.

Song Titles of the Week:

The track list to the Gunshy's There's No Love in This War:

· 1. May 14, 1943: The Khaki-Whacky Girls

· 2. August 13, 1943: Eddie Was a Good Friend of Mine

· 3. August 27, 1943: A Fortunate Man

· 4. October 28, 1943: Jule, I'm Not Ready to Die

· 5. December 18, 1943

· 6. December 26, 1943: Humphrey Bogart & His Lady

· 7. June 1, 1944: Instruments of Modern Man

· 8. June 11, 1944: Pretty in the Red & White Dress

· 9. June 22, 1944: Standing Outside the Royal Opera House

· 10. July 3, 1944: I Shot a Man

· 11. September 5, 1944: The Armchair Advisors

· 12. November 14, 1944

· 13. March 7, 1945: There's No Love in This War

· 14. September 5, 1945: Let Them Dance

· 15. September 6, 1945: Til My Belly Hangs Over My Belt

· 16. September 30, 1945: A Soldier's Blues

· 17. October 11, 1945: Tell Them That I Said Hello

Album Cover of the Week:

Nicole Atkins' Neptune City

Other Notables:

Puscifer's V Is for Vagina

Yes, Maynard James Keenan really did endow the long-awaited first album by his side project with this title -- and thanks to it, you won't be finding the album at Target stores. The CD is still coming out anyway -- it probably helps that the band is releasing the disc through its own label -- and is being streamed on the band's MySpace page. Don't miss appearances by Rage Against the Machine's Tom Morello and Brad Wilk, Primus drummer Tim Alexander and more.

Various artists' "The Unholy Alliance - Chapter II: Preaching to the Perverted" DVD

Some are classifying this package as a Slayer release, but given that the 90-minute concert set also includes a bunch of live performances by Lamb of God, Mastodon, Thine Eyes Bleed and Children of Bodom, we're not going to. Aside from parts of a concert shot at the tour's stop in Vancouver, British Columbia, on July 13, 2006, the disc also has interviews, backstage footage, behind-the-scenes clips and more.

Armor for Sleep's Smile for Them

The New Jersey post-hardcore band logged a couple of releases with Equal Vision before hopping aboard the Sire train for its third one. The gang, which has been on the road with the Academy Is ... and Cobra Starship, recently leaked its new material onto P2P programs and posted "Williamsburg" onto its MySpace page. Other Smile for Them tracks include, er, "Smile for the Camera," "Run Right Back In" and "Stars in Your Eyes."

New Releases:

· Carrie Akre - Last the Evening (Loveless)

· Armor for Sleep - Smile for Them (Sire) [Buy Now]

· Nicole Atkins - Neptune City (Red Ink)

· Avenged Sevenfold - Avenged Sevenfold (MVI also available; Warner Bros.) [Buy Now]

Read: [article id="1564211"]"Avenged Sevenfold Say New LP Will Have You 'Banging Your Head The Entire Time' "[/article]

· Away Team - Training Day (Hall of Justus)

· Baby Bash - Cyclone (Arista) [Buy Now]

· Backstreet Boys - Unbreakable (deluxe digipak also available; Jive) [Buy Now]

· Ian Ball - Who Goes There (Dispensary)

· Bigelf - Hex (Custard)

· Jeff Austin Black - Human (Rainman)

· Black Cobra - Feather and Stone (At a Loss)

· Black Ghosts - Any Way You Choose to Give It (EP; I Am Sound)

· Blues Traveler - Cover Yourself (C3) [Buy Now]

· Bobaflex - Tales From Dirt Town (TVT)

· Buck 65 - Situation (Strange Famous)

· Jonathan Butler - Live in South Africa (with DVD; Rendezvous)

· Capital - Homefront (Revelation)

· Charalambides - Likeness (Kranky)

· The Color Fred - Bend to Break (Equal Vision)

· Graham Colton - Here Right Now (Republic)

· Will Downing - After Tonight (Peak)

· Eagles - Long Road Out of Eden (two CDs; only available at Wal-Mart and Sam's Club stores) [Buy Now]

· Efterklang - Parades (Leaf)

· Endeverafter - Kiss or Kill (Razor & Tie)

· Enter Shikari - Take to the Skies (Tiny Evil)

· Genitorturers - Flesh Is the Law (Retribution)

· Jeff Griffith - If It Ain't One Thing It's Another (Arrowhead)

· The Gunshy - There's No Love in This War (Latest Flame)

· The Harlem Experiment - The Harlem Experiment (Ropeadope)

· Levon Helm - Dirt Farmer (Vanguard)

· Intronaut - The Challenger (Translation Loss)

· Richard Lloyd - The Radiant Monkey (Parasol)

· Luna Halo - Luna Halo (American)

· Steve Moore - The Henge (Relapse)

· Youssou N'Dour - Rokku Mi Rokka (Nonesuch)

· Otep - The Ascension (Koch)

· Othello - Alive at the Assembly Line (Hip Hop Is Music)

· Lorenzo Owens - Better Days: The Encore (Federal Distribution)

· The Pack - Based Boys (Jive) [Buy Now]

· Amanda Perez - Hand of Fate (digipak; Upstairs)

· Playaz Circle - Supply & Demand (Disturbing Tha Peace)

· Project Pat - Hypnotized Minds Presents: Project Pat - Walkin' Bank Roll (Koch/ Hypnotized Minds)

· Puscifer - V Is for Vagina (digipak; Puscifer Entertainment)

Read: [article id="1565027"]"Tool's Maynard James Keenan Unleashes 'Body Candy' With Puscifer Side Project"[/article]

· Saves the Day - Under the Boards (Vagrant) [Buy Now]

· Sally Shapiro - Disco Romance (Paper Bag)

· Shooting Spires - Shooting Spires (Cardboard)

· Sightings - Through the Panama (Load)

· Alice Smith - For Lovers, Dreamers & Me (Epic)

· Britney Spears - Blackout (Jive) [Buy Now]

Read: [article id="1571813"]"Britney Spears' New Album, Blackout: A Track-By-Track Report"[/article]

· Aaron Stout - Queens Live in Caskets (Monotreme)

· Anna Ternheim - Anna Ternheim (EP; Decca)

· Terror - Rhythm Amongst the Chaos (EP; Reaper)

· Kate Tucker & the Sons of Sweden - Kate Tucker & the Sons of Sweden (Red Valise)

· Josh Turner - Everything Is Fine (MCA Nashville)

· The Wonder Years - Get Stoked on It! (No Sleep)

· Various artists - "30 Days of Night" soundtrack (digipak; Ipecac)

· Various artists - "Bee Movie" soundtrack (RCA)

· Various artists - "Control" soundtrack (Rhino)

· Various artists - "I'm Not There" soundtrack (two CDs; Columbia)

Notable Reissues and Archival Material:

· Arrested Development - Since the Last Time (Vagabond)

· Andrea Bocelli - Vivere: The Best of Andrea Bocelli (deluxe edition with DVD also available; Decca)

· Chad & Jeremy - Greatest Hits (Acrobatic)

· John Coltrane - The Impulse! Albums: Volume One (Verve)

· Demented Are Go - In Sickness & in Health and Kicked Out of Hell (Anagram Psychobilly)

· Nick Drake - Fruit Tree (box set with four CDs and one DVD; Fontana/UMe)

· The Highwaymen - Folk Hits Collection (Varèse Sarabande)

· Insane Clown Posse - Jugganauts: The Best of ICP (Island)

· Jonas Brothers - Jonas Brothers - The Bonus Jonus Edition (with DVD; Hollywood)

· Joy Division - Closer; Still; and Unknown Pleasures (deluxe editions; each comes with an extra CD; Rhino)

· Damian Marley - Mr. Marley (Universal Republic)

· The Moody Blues - The Magnificent Moodies (Great American Music Co.)

· Patrick Moraz - Windows of Time (MVD Audio)

· Pillbugs - Monclovia (Rainbow Quartz)

· Queen - Queen Rock Montreal (two CDs; Hollywood)

· Leon Russell - Americana; Life and Love; The Live Album; Make Love to the Music; and Wedding Album (Wounded Bird)

· Frank Sinatra - The Cole Porter Songbook (Acrobatic)

· Smashing Pumpkins - Zeitgeist (with DVD; Reprise)

· Thursday - Kill the House Lights (Victory)

· Barry White - An Evening With Barry White (live; Eagle)

· World Party - Best in Show (Seaview)

· Gary Wright - Human Love (Koch)

· Various artists - A Santa Cause: It's a Punk Rock Christmas (two-CD digipak; Immortal)

Music DVDs:

· All That Remains - "Live" (Razor & Tie)

· Carmine & Vinny Appice - "Drum Wars: The Ultimate Battle" (Power Rock)

· The Beatles - "Help!" (available as a two-DVD digipak or deluxe box set with 60-page booklet; Apple Corps Ltd/ EMI) and "Impact! Songs That Changed the World - The Beatles: I Want to Hold Your Hand" (SRO Entertainment)

· The Bee Gees - "Impact! Songs That Changed the World - The Bee Gees: Stayin' Alive" (SRO Entertainment)

· Cactus - "Live" (MVD Visual)

· Ray Charles - "Live at Montreux 1997" (Eagle Vision)

· Bob Dylan - "The Other Side of the Mirror: Bob Dylan Live at the Newport Folk Festival 1963-1965" (Columbia)

· Patty Griffin - "Live From the Artists Den" (ATO)

· Jamiroquai - "Live at Montreux 2003" (Eagle Vision)

· Jay-Z - "Classic Albums: Reasonable Doubt" (Eagle Vision)

· Tom Jones - "This Is Tom Jones Christmas" (Time Life)

· Bob Marley - "Impact! Songs That Changed the World - Bob Marley: I Shot the Sheriff" (SRO Entertainment)

· Method Man - "Live From the Sunset Strip" (HD Entertainment)

· Elvis Presley - "Destination Vegas" (Video Music) and "Impact! Songs That Changed the World - Elvis Presley: Heartbreak Hotel" (SRO Entertainment)

· Queen - "Queen Rock Montreal" (Eagle Vision) and "Queen Rock Montreal + Live Aid" (two DVDs; Eagle Vision)

· Django Reinhardt - "King of Jazz Guitar" (Quantum Leap)

· Edwin Starr - "The Edwin Starr Story" (Wienerworld)

· Neil Young - "Under Review 1976-2006" (Chrome Dreams)

· Various artists - "20 to Life: The Life and Times of John Sinclair" (Steve Gebhardt)

· Various artists - "The Unholy Alliance - Chapter II: Preaching to the Perverted" (Columbia)

Digital Releases:

· Inanna - Butterfly Remixes (Jook)

· North Elementary - Lovesday Dead Down: Remixed Recordings and Extras (available on iTunes only)

· Tim Fite - Untitled Halloween EP (available for free on starting Wednesday)

· Various artists - Big Change: Songs for FINCA (available on iTunes only)

Coming Attractions:

November 6:

· Angels & Airwaves - I-Empire (Geffen)

Read: [article id="1569960"]"Angels & Airwaves' Revolution Has Begun -- Just Wait 29 Years, Tom DeLonge Insists"[/article]

· Chris Brown - Exclusive (deluxe edition comes with DVD; Jive)

Read: [article id="1559602"]"Pharrell, Will.I.Am Joining Chris Brown's Exclusive Club"[/article]

· Jay-Z - American Gangster (Roc-A-Fella)

Read: [article id="1571481"]"Jay-Z's American Gangster: A Guided Tour By Jigga, Jermaine Dupri, Pharrell And Others"[/article]

November 13:

· Alicia Keys - As I Am (J)

· The Killers - Sawdust (Island)

· Ja Rule - The Mirror (Murder Inc./ Universal)

Read: [article id="1564678"]"Ja Rule Leaves Bitterness -- And 50 Cent Beef -- Behind On New Album"[/article]

November 20:

· Beyoncé - "The Beyoncé Experience Live" DVD (Columbia)

· Bloc Party - A Weekend in the City (digital-only reissue with bonus tracks; Vice) and Flux (digital-only EP; Vice)

· Daft Punk - Alive (enhanced two-CD deluxe edition; Virgin)

· Gorillaz - D-Sides (special two-CD, glossy-box edition due same day; Virgin)

· Nine Inch Nails - Y34RZ3R0R3MIX3D (with DVD; Interscope)

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