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    Vinyl Releases of the Week: May 2, 2012

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    I love it – Brian Wilson and George Harrison, two men from the two biggest bands of all time, have retrospective albums out this week that shine a new light on their individual genius. But the age-old question still remains: Beatles or Beach Boys? Instead of trying to answer that, check out the new music from Norah Jones, Rufus Wainwright, and Santigold, or revisit some classics from UFO and Styx.

    Brian Wilson I Just Wasn’t Made for These Times (Friday Music)
    For the first time on 180-gram audiophile vinyl is this 1995 solo album from Brian Wilson, made in conjunction with the Wilson bio-documentary of the same name and marking the artist’s re-entry into public life after a tumultuous personal period. For the album, Wilson teams up with producer Don Was and revisits his back catalog, drawing from his deep isolation and loneliness to create restrained re-interpretations of Beach Boys classics like “Caroline, No,” “Do It Again,” “Let the Wind Blow,” “The Warmth of the Sun,” “Meant for You,” “This Whole World,” “Wonderful,” and “‘Til I Die.”

    George HarrisonEarly Takes Volume 1 (UMe)
    Vinyl pressing of this 2012 release from the rock and roll legend, the audio companion to Martin Scorsese’s Harrison bio-pic, Living in the Material World, and a must for any Harrison fan. Featuring early demos of eight songs from Harrison’s solo catalog including “All Things Must Pass” and “My Sweet Lord,” as well as covers of Bob Dylan’s “Mama You’ve Been on My Mind” and the Everly Brothers’ “Let It Be Me” that never made it on a record, Early Takes reveals Harrison’s talents and artistic growth more than the songs’ highly varnished studio versions.

    Norah Jones Little Broken Hearts (Blue Note)
    From the title, it’s easy to deduce that the new album from Norah Jones is a break-up album. Coming 10 years after her breakout debut, Come Away with Me, it finds the talented artist collaborating with producer Danger Mouse (Gnarls Barkley, Broken Bells) and taking a much darker, sometimes wicked approach in its brooding, atmospheric tracks. Includes digital download card.

    SantigoldMaster of My Make-Believe (Atlantic)
    After teasing the blogosphere for the past four years, Santigold is back with a sophomore album, presented in all its globalist, futuristic dance-pop glory on vinyl. Features Yeah Yeah Yeahs guitarist Nick Zinner and singer Karen O.

    Rufus WainwrightOut of the Game (Decca)
    Nick Zinner also makes an appearance on the new album from Rufus Wainwright. Described by producer Mark Ronson as having “a real ‘70s, Lauren Canyon spirit” while Wainwright himself cites “all the greats – Elton, Freddie Mercury, David Bowie…” it features the Dap-Kings as his backing band as well as a host of guests including the aforementioned Zinner, Wilco’s Nels Cline, and Sean Lennon.

    Brian Jonestown MassacreAufheben (A. Records)
    Behold: the new album from psych-rockers Brian Jonestown Massacre, pressed on 180-gram vinyl. Recorded in Berlin, it is an Eastern-tinged, cinematic album featuring original member Matt Hollywood as well as contributions from Will Carruthers (Spacemen 3, Spritualized) and the vocals of Eliza Karmasalo – in Finnish.

    Bright Eyes Fevers and Mirrors, There’s No Beginning to the Story EP (Saddle Creek)
    Double LP reissue of Bright Eyes’ Y2K classic, Fevers and Mirrors, pressed on 180-gram vinyl. Also back on vinyl is the follow-up EP There’s No Beginning to the Story, featuring two tracks not available on the CD release  – “Amy in the White Coat” and a cover of Neil Young’s “Out on the Weekend.” Both include a copy of the CD in the jacket.

    Styx Cornerstone (Friday Music)
    Limited edition 180-gram vinyl reissue of Styx’s watershed multi-platinum 1979 album.  This classic rock hit features the band’s first number one in “Babe,” as well as the songs “Why Me,” “Never Say Never,” “Lights,” and “Boat on the River,” and it is housed in a first-time gatefold cover.

    UFO Lights Out (Friday Music)
    180-gram audiophile reissue of the British hard-rock band’s 1977 smash, Lights Out. Featuring “Love to Love,” “Too Hot to Handle,” and “Lights Out” along with a cover of Love’s “Alone Again Or,” the album is a classic.

    Pennywise All or Nothing (Epitaph)
    Already being called the Hermosa Beach punk-rock band’s best album since 1997’s Full Circle, All or Nothing finds Pennywise playing harder and faster than ever, marking a return to their mid-‘90s roots and the debut of new singer Zoli Teglas, formerly of Ignite. (P.S. These guys went to my high school.)

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