For the past two years or so, singer/songwriter John Mayer has laid fairly low. After a series of controversial statements (coupled with a mediocre album) threatened his career, he decided to shut up and work on a new album. While throat problems delayed the album’s completion and released, Born & Raised is finally here. It finds John in a somewhat more reflective, country-ish mood. Unfortunately, promotion efforts have been limited due to the recurrence of the issues that delayed the album in the first place. Of course, we wish John well and hope that he feels strong enough to hit the road again soon. Although it might be good that he can’t do the interview thing these days.

Speaking of mouthy folks, Shirley Manson has never been one to hold her tongue, and the saucy redhead has reunited with Garbage to make the album Not Your Kind of People. The quartet’s first album in six years is also the first on their own label, Stunvolume.

They’re the leading lights in a fairly busy new release week. British DJ/remix team Soulsavers have drawn a lot of influence from eighties synth-rock outfits like Depeche Mode, and for their latest album, The Light The Dead See, they’ve enlisted DM frontman Dave Gahan to handle the majority of the lead vocals. Of course, if you’re a regular reader of this site, you may have already gotten a gander at our review.

Those of us with short memories may not realize that Adam Lambert did not, in fact, win Season Eight of American Idol. That title went to Kris Allen, whose debut album came and went without making much of a splash. Despite the lack of success (relatively speaking,) Allen has not yet been part of the deluge of former “Idol” contestants who’ve managed to get dropped by RCA. His sophomore effort, Thank You Camellia, drops today, and features more of the earnest pop-rock that’s his trademark.

Gotye’s “Someone That I Used To Know” is still the #1 song in the country, and his duet partner Kimbra is making her U.S. debut today with Vows. It’s been out in her native Australia since last summer, and if you’re anticipating hearing “USED TO KNOWWWWWWWW!!!” over and over again, Kimbra’s versatility may throw you for a bit of a loop.

Elsewhere, Slash is back with Apocalyptic Love, a less star-studded affair than his 2011 self-titled effort, while provocateur Beth Ditto returns with her much buzzed about band The Gossip and an album called A Joyful Noise. Also on the release schedule, singer/songwriter John McLaughlin (you’ll probably dig him if you’re fond of that other John M.) ’80s/early ’90s rockers The Cult, and contemporary Christian outfit MercyMe.

Without much on the reissue or “WTF?” front this week, we’ll leave you with our usual recommendation to check out the folks at Pause and Play, who offer a complete look at this week’s release schedule.


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