New This Week: Randy Newman, PVRIS, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, and more

Wendy Geller
Writer, Yahoo Entertainment
Randy Newman

Searching for something to listen to this weekend? Yahoo Music has you covered with a rundown of some of this week’s biggest and buzzing releases, including Randy Newman, PVRIS, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, and more. Check back every Friday for a fresh list of albums to help fuel your weekend playlists.

Randy Newman: Dark Matter (Nonesuch). Newman’s first album since 2008 continues his legacy as a master storyteller — on this set, he lends his ironic and acerbic tone to a wide range of topics such as Vladimir Putin, the Kennedy brothers, Sonny Boy Williamson, science vs. religion, and the always popular emotion of love.

PVRIS: All We Know Of Heaven, All We Need Of Hell (Rise). Electro-goth-rock trio PVRIS follow up their 2014 debut with another chilly, darkly alternative set. Although these adjectives seem off-putting, there’s something undeniably appealing about this group and its sound that charms even as it pushes away.

Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band: Lay it on Down (Concord). Blues prodigy Shepherd joined forces with some of Nashville’s best hit songwriting teams to further along his smoking guitar prowess, proving that he’s got musical talent to spare beyond his trademark technique.

Quiet Riot: Road Rage (Frontiers Music s.r.l.). With the blessing of the late frontman Kevin DuBrow’s family, Quiet Riot drummer Frankie Banali has resurrected the metal band, this time filling the lead spot with James Durbin from American Idol. Durbin has a proven way with rocking out, and his high-pitched vocals fit in to the classic sound nicely.

Brett Eldredge: Brett Eldredge (Atlantic Nashville). Eldredge stands out in the country world (a world, it should be noted, that is a fairly tough crowd) due to his mastery of the all-out jam. This is a record that will entertain country fans as well as keep them on their toes for what’s next.

Dan Wilson: Re-Covered (Big Deal Music). Wilson, an ace songwriter, brings forth reinterpretations of some of the best-known songs he has written for and with other artists, including Adele’s “Someone Like You,” the Dixie Chick’s “Not Ready to Make Nice,” Chris Stapleton’s “When the Stars Come Out,” and his own band Semisonic’s hit “Closing Time.”

Tyler Childers: Purgatory (Hickman Holler/Thirty Tigers). Produced by critic’s favorite Sturgill Simpson, Childers’ LP is a singer-songwriter’s lyrical dream. He chooses to focus on his childhood home of Lawrence County, Kentucky, detailing the people and landmarks that make his heritage special.

George Thorogood: Party of One (Rounder). Thorogood has had a four-decade career, but this marks his very first solo record (apart from his legendary band the Destroyers). It’s a fine exercise in blues, covering songs by some of his own favorite influences: Robert Johnson, John Lee Hooker, Elmore James, the Rolling Stones, Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, and more.

Eagles of Death Metal: I Love You All the Time: Live at the Olympia In Paris (Eagle Rock). This two-CD set captures the full Feb. 16, 2016 concert, an emotional return to Paris four months after gunmen killed 89 people at the band’s concert at the Bataclan Theatre.

Dead Cross: Dead Cross (Ipecac Recordings). This is the debut project by the hardcore supergroup, which is led by Faith No More’s Mike Patton and ex-Slayer drummer Dave Lombardo. Justin Pearson (the Locust) and Michael Crain (Retox) round out the lineup. It sounds pretty much exactly as you would expect, which is good news for fans of this type of music.

Mystery Skulls: One of Us (Warner). For his second album, singer/producer Mystery Skulls (aka Luis Dubuc) takes a concept approach: The set serves as soundtrack to a story that follows the relationship of two residents in a dystopian world as they fight to escape shadowy forces exerting control over society. Sound interesting? It is.

Third Day: Revival (Essential). Few contemporary Christian bands have the staying power and appeal of Third Day, who have been leading the genre for two decades strong. Here, they indulge in a Southern gospel stew, utilizing old-timey horns, piano, and vocal backups to create an overall swinging release.

Nick Heyward: Woodland Echoes (Gladsome Hawk). Heyward, the British singer/songwriter best known as the frontman for Haircut 100, hasn’t put out a solo album in 18 years. Heyward spent a good period of recording his ninth set in sunny Florida, which explains the warm glowing feeling the setlist exudes.

Hard Working Americans: We’re All in This Together (Melvin/RED). Helmed by Todd Snider, Widespread Panic’s Dave Schools, and Duane Trucks, this live album presents 13 songs mostly captured last summer in Birmingham, Alabama.

Accept: The Rise of Chaos (Nuclear Blast). Nothing new here —  just yet another disc full of the hard rock/power metal Accept has been specializing in for decades now. This is straight-ahead exactly what the band’s fans expect, and will no doubt enjoy.