Coldplay -- Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends (rock)
What you'd expect from Coldplay, only moreso. Brian Eno's production blunts the soft edges even further, and makes it feel more swirly.
Judas Priest - Nostradamus (rock)
What you'd expect from Spinal Tap, only moreso. A nearly 2-hour metal opera tribute to the great prognosticator. More interesting for the novelty of the project than for the music.
The Briggs -- Come All You Madmen (rock)
The Briggs aren't afraid to wear their influences on their sleeves, and this time they're definitely wearing The Clash. Loud, political lyrics over solid guitar punk. They've got the sound right, and the songs are pretty good, too.
The Mannish Boys - The Supreme Genius of King Khan and the Shrines (blues)
Blues chameleons that echo several different areas of the music's evolution. In their skill and eclecticism, this group most closely resembles Rising Sons, the 60's blues band that launched both Taj Mahal and Ry Cooder. I wouldn't be surprised to be hearing similar accolades for these bluesmen in the years to come.
Dan Tyminski -- Wheels (bluegrass)
If you remember the Soggy Bottom Boys from "O Brother, Where Art Thou?" you'll know Dan Tyminski as the voice grafted onto George Clooney to sing "Man of Constant Sorrow." Tyminski is also know as the lead of Allison Krauss' backup band. his first solo album is Kraussian bluegrass, a slightly airbrushed version of string-band country.
In the blog this week: Coldplay, Judas Priest, The Briggs, The Mannish Boys, Dan Tyminsky
This list will give you a sense of where I'm coming from:
1. Radiohead - In Rainbows (rock) 2. Herbie Hancock - River: The Joni Letters (jazz) 3. Galactic - From the Corner to the Block (rap) 4. Chaka Khan - Funk This (R&B) 5. I'm Not There: Original Soundtrack - (folk) 6. The Silk Road Ensemble - New Impossibilities (classical) 7. Make Farris - Salvation in Lights (gospel) 8. Kenny Wayne Shepherd - Ten Days Out (blues) 9. M.I.A. - Kala (world) 10. Steve Earle - Washington Square Serenade (country)