It’s hard to believe it’s been a solid decade since the last matchbox twenty (yes, I’m leaving the pretentious spelling in) album came out. Of course, in that time there’s been an anthology, two solo albums from lead singer Rob Thomas and, hell, even Paul Doucette released an album. Still-a decade. Does anyone care anymore? I guess today is the day we find out. The pop/rock band’s fourth studio album, North, arrives today. First single “She’s So Mean” is performing admirably at radio, which is promising when you consider that modern-day top 40 radio would generally not be kind to a band that’s been gone so long. matchbox (and Rob) has always been hit-or-miss for me. “She’s So Mean” falls definitively on the “hit” side, so I have high hopes for North. And hell, it’s been 10 years. If you can’t put together a halfway decent record after a decade, you should probably hang up the microphone, knowhutimean?

Bob Mould is a favorite here at Popblerd HQ. While I’m only vaguely familiar with his work, there are others on staff that are absolute diehards (so much so, that there is a definitive Mould discography fever on the way within the next week or two.) The man has definitely had a colorful and varied career-coming in on the first wave of alternative/college rock in the ’80s with Husker Du, then achieving some grunge-era fame with Sugar and later on, dabbling in DJing and club music. His new album, Silver Age, has been widely heralded as the first true “rock” album he’s done in a while. Maybe it’ll be my official gateway drug to Mould. I guess we’ll find out soon enough.

Fresh-faced Irishmen Two Door Cinema Club caused a bit of a stir here on the East Coast last year with their debut album Tourist History, an appealing dance/rock sound, and some well-received live shows. The lads are back for round two: Beacon arrives in stores. Recorded partially in the U.S., it’s a sharpening of their signature sound and the fellas are well poised for a commercial¬† breakthrough with this one.

Also on deck: it’s a nice week to be an indie-inclined thirtysomething, as both Animal Collective and Cat Power have new albums out today. The former’s album is entitled Centipede Hz. No, it’s not a tribute to Rebbie Jackson, although the Animal Collective folks are kinda weird, so it just might be. Um, so the slightly more grounded Cat Power (Chan Marshall) is back with Sun, her first album of new material in six years.

If anyone was looking for a new Melissa Etheridge album (personally, I thought her schtick was tired a decade ago,) E 4th Street Feeling is out today. There are also new albums out by Eurythmic Dave Stewart (who’s been a busy man–three albums in the last 13 or so months!) as well as by the always fashionably retro Brian Setzer, former next-big-thing Tanita Tikaram (remember her?) and former Rolling Stone “Best Unsigned Band” winners-and cover boys- The Sheepdogs.

There is also a new album out today from Smash Mouth. No, I don’t know why, either. I certainly didn’t ask for it.

For a deeper dive into this week’s new releases, make sure you’re checking out Pause And Play. Happy Tuesday!

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