Welcome to another new release Tuesday, boys and girls! Spring is in the air, and only a week away from being official! As we shoot Old Man Winter away (or beat him senseless with a blunt object, as I would do) let’s see what audio delights await us in stores and online this week!

Depeche Mode has been thrilling us with electronic pop gems for three decades, and Erasure and Yaz have been doing the same for almost as long. Vince Clarke, the production mastermind behind the latter two bands, was an original member of the former band. They’re calling themselves VCMG (simple enough, it’s their initials), and their debut album is entitled Ssss. Vince is once again collaborating with DM’s Martin Gore for a full-length album of instrumental electronic pop. I’m listening to it right now, and it pretty much sounds like what I’d expect a Gore/Clarke collabo to sound like…minus the vocals, of course. Why not bring Andy Bell, Alison Moyet and Dave Gahan along for the ride?

The Ting Tings were a thing thing a couple of years back-with a strong selling debut, a Grammy nomination, and catchy hits like “That’s Not My Name” and “Shut Up & Let Me Go.” The duo has resurfaced with a new album entitled Sounds From Nowheresville. It’s hard to say if the duo can make the magic happen again, since it has been a while since their debut, and you know how times change. Then again, “That’s Not My Name” was so maddeningly catchy that it’s still stuck in my head four years later, so maybe there is hope for them.

Say Anything got lumped into the whole emo thing with bands like Panic! At The Disco a few years back, and made further headlines due to the unpredictable antics of lead singer Max Bemis. They also recorded one of the best odd cover versions ever, with a remake of Ol’ Dirty Bastard’s “Got Your Money.” After a three-year absence and a label switch, they’re back with an album entitled “Anarchy, My Dear.”

The Velvet Teddy Bear himself, Ruben Studdard, is still best known as the winner of the second season of “American Idol.” After taking the prize by barely a hair over Clay Aiken, Ruben had a modest solo success with “Sorry 2004” and then-like most “Idol” winners and runner-ups, did a slow fade. He released a gospel album, went indie, lost some weight, got married, got divorced, and now he’s back with a new album. Indie label Shanachie has been fairly kind to more mature-sounding R&B artists, and Letters From Birmingham may just be the vehicle by which Ruben regains his mojo.

The rest of the release schedule includes albums by rootsy rockers Lucero (Women & Work), metal band Soulfly (Enslaved), up & Coming indie band Delta Spirit (a self-titled affair) and the unstoppable Meat Loaf. His new joint, Hell In A Handbasket, has a guest list that reads like a reality show lineup, not surprising considering Meat Loaf was a star attraction on a recent season of the Celebrity Apprentice. Big & Rich’s John Rich appears here, as do rapper Lil Jon, Sugar Ray’s Mark McGrath and…Public Enemy’s Chuck D.? REALLY? Flav I can see. But Chuck? Come on, man!!

As always, make sure you’re checking out Pause & Play for the latest and most up-to-date new release news.

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