Bruce Springsteen's High Hopes is the Pick of the Week

2014 gets in gear this week with a huge week of great new releases!
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We are definitely back in business  this week with a slew of great looking releases.  I'm contractually obligated to make any new Bruce Springsteen my pick of the week (and by obligated I mean our notorious editor Josh Hathaway has threatened to kill me if I don't) and so I am proud to announce that High Hopes is this weeks pick.

It probably would have been anyways.  I've never been the world's biggest Springsteen fan, but after seeing him live a few years back I jumped on the bandwagon with both feet.  Dude knows how to bring it in front of his thousands of fans night after night.  This new studio album just kind of jumped out of nowhere with little indication or fanfare until a couple of weeks ago.  Its also a bit different from his usual studio work in that it consists of a lot of older songs - things that never quite made it onto other albums or that were never quite completed initially.  Its also got the great Tom Morello playing on eight of the tunes.  Morello is best known for his work with Rage Against the Machine and seems an odd choice for Springsteen, but the two hit it off a few years back and Springsteen invited him to come along for part of his recent overseas tour.  

The album also features work by Clarence Clemons and Danny Federici both who were prominent members of the E-Street band and both who passed away relatively recently.  Any Springsteen album would have made it to my list, but all of these features make this a unique-sounding album and that's more than enough to make Bruce Springsteen's High Hopes my Pick of the Week.

Also out this week that looks interesting:

The River & The Thread - Rosanne Cash:  Johnny Cash's daughter has consistently made beautiful music.  This one's already garnering some nice reviews from folks like NPR.

Lucinda Williams - Lucinda Williams:  Williams seminal self-titled album is one of the cornerstones in the whole alternative country movement.  To prove what a terrific songwriter Lucinda really is one only has to note how nearly every song here has been covered by various artists including Tom Petty ("Changed the Locks,") to Mary Chapin Carpenter ("Passionate Kisses.")  This 25th anniversary  edition includes a remastering of the original album along with a bonus disc containing a concert from 1989.

Songs From the Movie - Mary Chapin Carpenter:  10 songs from Carpetner have been transformed into orchestral compositions in the mode of movie scores.  A strange, interesting concept that could be brilliant or disastrous.

Give the People What They Want - Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings: These guys make the kind of neo-soul/funk music that dances, grooves and boogies right into my little heart.  

Last of the Outlaws - Railroad Earth: RRE make blend of Americana/folk/roots/newgrass music that brings out the best in all those genres.  They also jam like nobodies business.  New Railroad Earth is always good news to me.

Play the Blues - The Deluxe Editon - Buddy Guy & Junior Wells: Just off a tour with the Rolling Stones these two legends teamed up with Eric Clapton (and Dr. John for a guest appearance) on this album.  This edition includes a remastering and a bonus disk.

NEC 1993 Live in Birmingham/Live in Stuttgart 1993 - Deep Purple: Being sold separately these two albums showcase the hard rockers for all their might live in 1993.

Had God Seen My Shadow: An Anthology 1989-2011 - Mark Lanegan: Former Screaming Trees frontman has proven himself much more than just another grunge throwback.  This two CD collection features some of his best solo material including 12 unreleased tracks and a 44 page booklet.