This week's new release bin will be crammed with quality, as the industry seems to be hitting what it must consider an annual pre-holiday sweet spot: a release date close enough to the holidays, but not too close, that might allow a record to break through to a wider audience and peak by the time folks are out acquiring gifts. One of the better gifts one can give in our opinion is the superlative third set from The Hold Steady: we streamed it over the weekend and it was almost too good. With all the hype from the Pfork, in particular, we were almost hoping the set would be a dud. But it is about as far from dud as a record can get. Buy a copy Tuesday. You won't be disappointed.
Other big releases include major label Capitol's double-barrel indie assault of Sean Lennon and The Decemberists. Cognoscenti may get a bit more of a charge out of new releases from IDM standard bearer Clark and indie pop stalwart Joe Pernice's latest Pernice Brothers set. All of these are listed below, with links going to relevant commercial opportunities courtesy of our former game wardens over at Insound. We linked to album streams for a lot of these records over the weekend, so scroll down to have a listen.
Clark-- Body Riddle -- Warp
The Decemberists -- The Crane Wife -- Capitol
The Hold Steady -- Boys and Girls in America -- Vagrant
Sean Lennon -- Friendly Fire -- Capitol
Pernice Brothers -- Live a Little -- Ashmont