Emerson Lake and Palmer are heard in full, early-1970s flight on Live in California, an archival, long-bootlegged live date.
We find out how Yngwie Malmsteen sounds without Tim “Ripper” Owens this week, too.
Meanwhile, for old-school music buffs, New Music Monday provides a plethora of new vinyl to dig through, including a recent concert date from AC/DC and a brilliant new ambient album from Brian Eno — his first solo project in seven years.
For you turntable buffs, there are also classic sides featuring Ozzy Osbourne from Black Sabbath — just in time for their reunion album, right? — and Led Zeppelin’s aptly celebrated Celebration Day.
More into moving pictures?
Check out new video releases from Metallica and from the Yardbirds.
Looking to discover something brand new? Head over to the MiCKS, this cool-rocking group that recalls the fizzy emotion of punk but with a pleasing emotional heft.
Elsewhere, you will find everything from Bruno Mars to Buddy Miller, from Peter Brotzmann to Tim Buckley, from Green Day to War …
AC/DC – LIVE AT RIVER PLATE [VINYL] (POP/ROCK): I’ve always been of the opinion that live albums and DVDs should be just that — live. I dislike live sets that amount to the studio album set to live footage with some crowd screams overdubbed. I don’t mind a little tinkering here and there, but I want to hear the real live show, warts and all. I want an experience that’s something like the one I’d have if I were in the audience. At times, on Live at River Plate, you get that live experience; at others, though, you may feel like there’s been a little too much doctoring. Still, this captures a solid performance by one of the premier hard rock bands of all time. It’s not appreciably different from other AC/DC live videos released in recent years, but let’s be honest, this is aimed squarely at the band’s hardcore fans. For that, it hits its mark. (More here.) — Fred Phillips
BLACK SABBATH – THE VINYL COLLECTION 1970-1978 (POP/ROCK): The first eight Sabbath studio albums, Live at Last and a seven-inch single of “Evil Woman” with a “Wicked World” B-side. Christmas is coming, and I’ve been pretty good this year. (More here.) — Fred Phillips
BRIAN ENO – LUX [VINYL] (POP/ROCK): Brian Eno’s first solo recording since 2005 is a return to the long-form sense of suspended animation that made 1975?s Discreet Music and 1978?s Music For Airports forefathers of the ambient movement nobody knew was coming — and with similarly blissful results. Lux seems, just like those earlier triumphs, as if it will hit in the chest more often than the head, but its roiling emotional undertow is similarly revealed — once you burrow beneath its surface placidity. And the deeper you go on this record, the more you hear. If anything, this album is quieter still, but no less powerful. (More here.) — Nick DeRiso
Andrea McArdle – 70s and Sunny: Live at 54 Below (Vocals)
Anthony Rapp – Without You (Vocals)
Boys Like Girls – Crazy World (Pop/Rock)
Bruno Mars – Unorthodox Jukebox (Pop/Rock)
Buddy Miller and Jim Lauderdale – Buddy and Jim (Country)
Daley – Alone Together EP (Pop/Rock)
EMERSON LAKE AND PALMER – LIVE IN CALIFORNIA (POP/ROCK): There’s a reason this April 6, 1974 concert, held during the sprawling California Jam at the Ontario Motor Speedway, has for so long been a favorite among bootleggers. It stands as one of the best examples of Emerson Lake and Palmer in their prime, melding traditional classical forms, English folk and brawny rock into something that was then entirely new. Even so, Live in California 1974 — now seeing official release on December 11, 2012 via Shout! Factory — actually builds towards its legendary status, constructing a staggering intensity moment by thrilling moment, step by considered step. All of that pent-up expectation from the album’s initial quietude is released in a torrent of sound on “Karn Evil” — and the power and the glory of that moment, once only heard through swiped second-generation transfers from old tapes, is felt anew on this sparkling clear new release. It’s like hearing Emerson Lake and Palmer all over again for the very first time. (More here.) — Nick DeRiso
Glee Cast – Vol. 3-Glee: the Music-Christmas Album (Pop/Rock)
Green Day – Tre (Pop/Rock)
Interpol – Turn on The Bright Lights: 10th Anniversary Edition (Pop/Rock)
Katherine Jenkins – Music From the Movies (Vocals)
LED ZEPPELIN – CELEBRATION DAY [VINYL] (POP/ROCK): Were it any other band, it would be easy to scoff at the prospect — three old dudes and a replacement for the now-apparently requisite missing dude, but this is Led Zeppelin and nothing about Led Zeppelin has ever been remotely “requisite.” The band has wisely held off properly reuniting until it truly felt like a celebration to the band and not just the fans, and that’s exactly what makes Celebration Day so exhilarating. They may not sound so young anymore, so a few songs are taken at slower paces than they used to be, and Robert Plant’s voice is noticeably less capable than it was, and he phrases some songs in new ways to keep from needing to hit high notes, such as on “Black Dog” and “Whole Lotta Love,” but there’s a palpable sense of joy running through the entire set. (More here.) — Tom Johnson
Lifehouse – Almeria (Pop/Rock)
METALLICA – QUEBEC MAGNETIC [2 DVD] (POP/ROCK): The two-disc DVD documents two nights worth of shows in Quebec and features 26 songs spanning their career, though it is fairly heavy on Death Magnetic material, being the tour from the album. No matter what you think of Metallica these days, you have to admit that they still bring it live. (More here.) — Fred Phillips
Patti LuPone – Far Away Places: Live at 54 Below (Vocals)
Peter, Paul and Mary – Live In Japan, 1967 [Deluxe Edition] (Folk)
Peter Brotzmann – For Adolphe Sax (Jazz)
THE YARDBIRDS – MAKING TRACKS: ON TOUR [2 DVD] (POP/ROCK): Always a fluid amalgam, even in their hey day, the Yardbirds have every right to continue forward — though former big-name members like Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page are, of course, long gone. The question, of course, is whether or not a group that still includes Jim McCarty and Chris Dreja, along with a new trio of contributors, can do justice to those classic tracks while avoiding the pitfalls of ghost-band nostalgia. Making Tracks makes the case, and definitively, that they can. Nearly 50 years in, the Yardbirds sound much as they always have: There’s just as much blues here as there is boom. That’s really all you can ask for at this late date. (More here.) — Nick DeRiso
THE MICKS – THE MICKS EP (POP/ROCK): An analog recording from Dreamland Studios, this converted West Hurley, NY, church, The MiCKS — raucous, randy, ready to fight — sounds like it could have been made 40 years ago, back before TV singing-contests shaped popular music. But don’t get the idea that this is throwaway DiY project, longer on attitude than ideas. Dig past the wild-eyed tatter on the surface, and this eponymous EP (due on December 11, 2012) displays real depth — both in emotion, and in musical complexity. (More here.) — Nick DeRiso
Tim Buckley – Look At The Fool; The Dream Belongs To Me (Pop/Rock)
Various artists – Music of Nashville [Hayden Panettiere, Clare Bowen, Sam Palladio] (Country)
War – World Is a Ghetto: 40th Anniversary Edition (Pop/Rock)
YNGWIE MALMSTEEN – SPELLBOUND (POP/ROCK): After a couple of pretty good albums with Tim Owens handling most of the vocal duties, Malmsteen has apparently decided that he can do it himself. Good luck with that. — Fred Phillips