It's music release time, where I take a trip down to the local record store and give you the skinny on what albums are dropping this week so you can be an educated consumer about it. However, since this is 2009, the local record store is named iTunes and you've probably pirated leaked versions of all this crap anyways. That's not going to stop me from snarking on it though.
Tori Amos - Midwinter Graces - Hey, does anybody still listen to Tori Amos after that hideous American Girl concept album thing where she pretended to be a bunch of ca-raaazy dolls? I'm waiting for somebody to raise their hands. It probably isn't helping matters that she's a dead ringer for Kathy Griffin these days. Midwinter Graces is a "seasonal album," which is usually called a "Christmas album" when an artist's fanbase isn't composed of aging goths who think Jesus is dumb.
Wyclef Jean - From The Hut To The Projects To The Mansion - Oh, that's great, Wyclef. Why didn't you just call this The I'm Rich Album? Congratulations, you got that paper. Or how about Lauryn Hill Lost Her Mind But I Didn't? Really, let's be completely honest here and just call it The Black Eyed Peas Made My Existence Redundant. I'm sure that would move some units at Sam Goody.
Bon Jovi - The Circle - The pride of New Jersey returns for another attempt at convincing people that being from New Jersey is cool in any way. I would really like to do a "People Of Wal-Mart" thing that's "People Of A Bon Jovi Concert." I'm sure it's just the prime cuts of the human race there.
Wale - Attention Deficit - This guy's been doing pretty good on the mixtape circuit, but that's not a promise of quality from his first solo LP, which features production from Mark Ronson, 9th Wonder, and more hipster favorites. Throw in a guest appearance from Lady Gaga and I'm going to put this one under "extremely skeptical," subfiled under "white people." But you never know - it could end up hot.
Dashboard Confessional - Alter The Ending - Is this a thing that people still listen to? I thought this guy's joke got old in like 2002, 2003 tops. He plays the acoustic guitar! Imagine that!