By Jake Shenker
Depending on your disposition, this week either brings you a bunch of records to stay far away from, or a big shopping day. Try and figure out what I’ll be spending my money on this Tuesday
Here’s what’s new this week:
Black Eyed Peas — The E.N.D. (Interscope)
The only way I can express myself about the Black Eyed Peas is through a haiku:
Why must you come back?
Fergie’s “Humps” were bad enough,
Please leave me alone.
Mos Def — The Ecstatic (Downtown)
Mos Def is certainly one of the best modern MCs, and his newest effort is as vibrant as his earlier work. With a broad variety in beat styles, there’s something for all kinds of hip-hop fans on The Ecstatic: from the heavily rock-infused “Supermagic” to the afro-beat percussion of “Casa Bey” and the big bass vibrations of “Wahid,” Mos Def runs the gamut of styles on this surprisingly succinct record. With producers galore — including Madlib, J Dilla (from beyond the grave?), and Oh No — it’s no wonder The Ecstatic covers more ground than a typical band’s greatest hits album.
Placebo — Battle For the Sun (Vagrant) and Sonic Youth — The Eternal (Matador)
I group these two albums together because I was damn surprised to see both these bands with new records out this week. So, what’re these guys doing to keep their existing fans happy and ensnare new, hip listeners? Not much. These records aren’t bad, per se, but they’re not fresh. If you’re a fan of either band, go enjoy their new album. If you didn’t like them before, these releases definitely won’t convert you.