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Hip-Hop/Rap - Released April 16, 2021 | Rhino - Elektra

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Busta Rhymes delivered his debut album, The Coming, three years after the Leaders of the New School unofficially disbanded, and it reflects the change in hip-hop between 1993 and 1996. The Coming is indebted to the slow, spare, and quietly menacing funk and soundscapes of the Wu-Tang Clan -- in fact, Ol' Dirty Bastard appears on one of the album's most infectious tracks, the single "Woo Ha!! Got You All in Check." Busta Rhymes, like Ol' Dirty, is a surreal, inspired rapper, but his skills are on a whole different level. Though his talents were evident on the Leaders of the New School records, Busta Rhymes has never had such an impressive showcase for his rhymes as he does on The Coming. Busta doesn't have a deep message in his raps, but he twists words and phrases around with an insane, invigorating flair. Like many hip-hop albums of the mid-'90s, The Coming is padded with too much material, but Busta Rhymes' brilliant raps keep the record from sinking during its monotonous passages. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Hip-Hop/Rap - Released April 16, 2021 | Rhino - Elektra

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Busta Rhymes delivered his debut album, The Coming, three years after the Leaders of the New School unofficially disbanded, and it reflects the change in hip-hop between 1993 and 1996. The Coming is indebted to the slow, spare, and quietly menacing funk and soundscapes of the Wu-Tang Clan -- in fact, Ol' Dirty Bastard appears on one of the album's most infectious tracks, the single "Woo Ha!! Got You All in Check." Busta Rhymes, like Ol' Dirty, is a surreal, inspired rapper, but his skills are on a whole different level. Though his talents were evident on the Leaders of the New School records, Busta Rhymes has never had such an impressive showcase for his rhymes as he does on The Coming. Busta doesn't have a deep message in his raps, but he twists words and phrases around with an insane, invigorating flair. Like many hip-hop albums of the mid-'90s, The Coming is padded with too much material, but Busta Rhymes' brilliant raps keep the record from sinking during its monotonous passages. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Hip-Hop/Rap - Released April 16, 2021 | Rhino - Elektra

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Busta Rhymes delivered his debut album, The Coming, three years after the Leaders of the New School unofficially disbanded, and it reflects the change in hip-hop between 1993 and 1996. The Coming is indebted to the slow, spare, and quietly menacing funk and soundscapes of the Wu-Tang Clan -- in fact, Ol' Dirty Bastard appears on one of the album's most infectious tracks, the single "Woo Ha!! Got You All in Check." Busta Rhymes, like Ol' Dirty, is a surreal, inspired rapper, but his skills are on a whole different level. Though his talents were evident on the Leaders of the New School records, Busta Rhymes has never had such an impressive showcase for his rhymes as he does on The Coming. Busta doesn't have a deep message in his raps, but he twists words and phrases around with an insane, invigorating flair. Like many hip-hop albums of the mid-'90s, The Coming is padded with too much material, but Busta Rhymes' brilliant raps keep the record from sinking during its monotonous passages. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Hip-Hop/Rap - Released April 8, 2021 | Rhino - Elektra

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Soul/Funk/R&B - Released February 19, 2021 | Rhino - Elektra

While it lacks a standout single along the lines of "Freak Like Me," Adina Howard's second album Welcome to Fantasy Island is a more consistent record than its predecessor, Do You Wanna Ride, boasting a better selection of songs and grooves. Howard still isn't much of a vocalist -- her idea of being seductive is panting heavily, and she doesn't have much power for the soulful numbers -- but she does have considerable sexual charisma, which is enough to make funky workouts like "(Freak) And U Know It" infectious. There's plenty of mediocre material scattered throughout Welcome to Fantasy Island, but it's ideal makeout music for the young urban professional. © Leo Stanley /TiVo
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Metal - Released October 30, 2020 | Rhino - Elektra

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After spending the first part of their career playing hair metal and hard rock, Pantera hardened their sound in 1990 in order to appeal to heavy and thrash metal fans with their excellent Cowboys from Hell. The album was followed by a decade completely dedicated to making the heaviest metal possible, starting with the riotous Vulgar Display of Power (1992), Far Beyond Driven (1994). The brutal The Great Southern Trendkill (1996) made a name for groove metal and ultimately led to this Reinventing the Steel (2000) which was released in the midst of the nu-metal period. With this record, the group aspired to reintroduce their fans to the true sound of metal as it should played. An ambitious task.We didn’t pay much attention to it at the time, but the group disbanded after the release of this album. With hindsight, their separation appears more of an inevitability: In addition to the group’s internal issues and, unless they desired to forever continue doing the same thing, the band weren’t really going anywhere. While Reinventing the Steel contained its fair share of classics (Yesterday Don’t Mean Shit, Revolution Is My Name, Death Rattle, and the fantastic final double-track It Makes Them Disappear/I’ll Cast a Shadow), some weaker tracks showed that the band was finding it hard to renew themselves and inspiration was on its last legs. Ultra-loyal fans nevertheless praised the album. For its 20th anniversary, Rhino/Elektra have released this triple-disc edition whose primary attraction is the Terry Date mix, the producer of Pantera’s masterpieces but not this album when it was made twenty years ago. His version has reinvented the album (sorry) to say the least. Bright, strong and dynamic, it far surpasses the original version.The distinction between the two is clear when listening to the second CD, the original mix (by Sterling Winfield and the Abott brothers) where not even a serious remastering is a match for Date’s mastery. Several “radio edit” versions are also included. The third, much more enjoyable disc, offers an instrumental rough mix of the album (which sounds great and would be incredible for karaoke nights) as well as five previously unavailable tracks that hardcore fans will no doubt already possess: Avoid the Light and Immortally Insane which feature in the original soundtracks to (Dracula 2000, Heavy Metal 2000 and the Texas Chainsaw Massacre remake) while Cat Scratch Fever (Ted Nugent), Hole in the Sky and Electric Funeral (Black Sabbath) have for a long time been available on various tribute albums. And there we have it: Terry Date’s remixing of Reinventing the Steel is the primary reason we return to this testament Pantera record along with heartfelt thoughts for Dimebag Darrell and Vinnie Paul who left us in 2004 and 2018 to join the celestial jam up above. © Charlélie Arnaud/Qobuz
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Metal - Released October 22, 2020 | Rhino - Elektra

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Rock - Released October 9, 2020 | Rhino - Elektra

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In late 1969, the Doors were reeling. That March, singer Jim Morrison was charged, tried, and convicted of obscenity for allegedly exposing himself at a concert in Miami. It resulted in promoters canceling future gigs. The July release of The Soft Parade provided more angst. Tired of the sound that governed their previous outings, the band incorporated horn and string arrangements with a new melodic accessibility. It signaled an unwelcome change for critics (though it did reach number six and was radically reappraised posthumously). In November they entered the studio with producer Paul Rothchild exhausted, stressed, and angry. Going back to blues and R&B basics seemed like the only direction to pursue. Morrison Hotel is often dubbed the Doors' blues album, due to raucous opener "Roadhouse Blues," one of the band's most enduring tunes. (Interestingly, it was issued as the B-side of first single "You Make Me Real.") Ray Manzarek leaves behind his organ to pound an upright piano, while guitarist Robby Krieger adds a filthy Chicago-styled riff, prodded by a rock shuffle from drummer John Densmore. The Lovin' Spoonful's John Sebastian (using the pseudonym "G. Puglese") provides its iconic harmonica wail. "Waiting for the Sun" is one of four tunes Morrison composed himself, and a psychedelic holdover from the 1968 album bearing the same title. Manzarek plays a spacy harpsichord as Krieger offers trippy slide guitar. "You Make Me Real" underscores the blues-rock motif, with roiling electric piano, stinging guitar vamps, and Densmore's swaggering shuffle. Morrison lords over all with his boozy, baritone roar. The organ returns on the downright funky boogie of "Peace Frog," as Morrison sings of "blood in the streets" addressing the civic unrest then gripping the nation. He counters near the end with a spoken stanza from his optimistic poem Newborn Awakening. "Ship of Fools" contains shifting time signatures that cross jazz, R&B, and pop, while the buoyant "Land Ho," offers an adventure-laden lyric in a sprawling rock & roll sea chanty, where Manzarek wields his organ like a mad calliope. Krieger's deep, bluesy, minor-key intro to "The Spy" is framed by jazzy electric piano and Morrison's sultry delivery, which approximates a lounge singer. "Queen of the Highway" is fueled by Densmore's powerful drumming and Manzarek's creative use of the Rhodes piano. One of the Doors' most progressive cuts, it seamlessly integrates blues, jazz, and spacy psychedelia. "Maggie McGill" closes the circle on the blues tip. Krieger's unruly, double-tracked slide riffs duel with a pulsing, distorted organ; Densmore bridges them under Morrison's slithering growl -- it foreshadows the singing style he displayed so abundantly on L.A. Woman in 1971. Blues and R&B were foundational to the Doors' musical vocabulary. They employed them to some degree on all of their albums, but never as consistently, adeptly, or provocatively as they did on Morrison Hotel, with absolutely stunning results. © Thom Jurek /TiVo
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Metal - Released October 8, 2020 | Rhino - Elektra

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Rock - Released October 1, 2020 | Rhino - Elektra

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Metal - Released September 10, 2020 | Rhino - Elektra

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Rock - Released September 10, 2020 | Rhino - Elektra

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Rock - Released August 20, 2020 | Rhino - Elektra

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Folk - Released May 29, 2020 | Rhino - Elektra

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Hip-Hop/Rap - Released March 27, 2020 | Rhino - Elektra

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As a member of the Wu-Tang Clan, Ol' Dirty Bastard's bizarre, free-form rants added both comic relief and a dangerous unpredictability to the group's chemistry. ODB's RZA-produced solo debut Return to the 36 Chambers stretches his schtick over a full album, which if anything makes him sound even more unbalanced. Long before the album ends, it's clear that ODB has emptied his bag of tricks -- loose, off-the-beat raps that sometimes don't even rhyme, unbelievably graphic vulgarity, gonzo off-key warbling (which sounds a little like Biz Markie as a mental patient), and general goofing off. Yet within that role as hardcore rap's clown prince of psychosis, ODB is pretty damned entertaining. His leaps in association are often as disturbing as they are funny, whether they're couched in scatological detail or not; they certainly don't make his widely publicized erratic behavior seem at all surprising. And, despite the unstructured feel dominating most of the album, there are a fair share of hooks, and two absolutely killer singles in "Shimmy Shimmy Ya" and "Brooklyn Zoo." Certainly, there's no reason for the album to be as long as it is, considering the dull filler toward the end. But, even though Return to the 36 Chambers might not be the most earth-shattering piece of the Wu-Tang puzzle, it's an infectious party record which proves that, despite his limitations, Ol' Dirty Bastard has the charisma to carry an album on his own. © Steve Huey /TiVo
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Rock - Released November 1, 2019 | Rhino - Elektra

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The rock’n’roll history books have often considered The Soft Parade to be The Doors’ worst album. Fifty years after its release on the 18th of July 1969, a re-evaluation of the Californians’ fourth opus establishes itself. Exactly a year after Waiting for the Sun, The Doors changed their modus operandi with an album which was viscerally less rock’n’roll. Unmanageable, completely obsessed with his poetry, more and more dependant on alcohol and always seemingly on the brink of leaving the band (held back in extremis by the keyboard player Ray Manzarek), Jim Morrison only wrote half of the tracks on this album. The guitarist Robbie Krieger stepped up to the mark and took the helm writing-wise, as well as developing the band’s instrumentation. Headed by Paul Harris, brass and strings make an unexpected appearance in the band’s sound. Notes of jazz dilute the pure rock sound and bring a more bluesy texture, as well as some pop and even some lounge-style sequences. An eclectic mix which is slightly confusing to begin with, but it stops The Doors’ unique singularity from dwindling. The melodies on The Soft Parade are peraps not of the same calibre as those on the three previous albums, but at an era when the competition was also experimenting with some stranger sounds, Jim Morrison, Ray Manzarek, Robby Krieger and John Densmore prove that they too can steer rock music into uncharted territories. This 50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition offers a new remastered version from producer Bruce Botnick, as well as bonus tracks like Who Scared You, as well as some unedited tracks, like demo versions of Doors Only, versions without brass or strings of Tell All the People, Touch Me, Wishful Sinful and Runnin’ Blue. Finally, among all these exciting new features of this 2019 edition, some interesting new guitar sections added by Krieger to Touch Me, Wishful Sinful and Runnin’ Blue. All in all, enough unedited material to please fans and better understand this musical mystery. © Max Dembo/Qobuz
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Pop - Released July 12, 2019 | Rhino - Elektra

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Instrumental and vocal firepower, the considerable ears of engineer Greg Ladanyi, and some magical mixing at the Sound Factory in Hollywood, combined to create the best known album of Jackson Browne's long career, reissued here in gloriously detailed and dynamically thrilling high resolution sound. Russ Kunkel's drum break at the climatic shift of the title track. David Lindley's mournful fiddle in "The Road." Rosemary Butler's soaring vocal solo in "Stay." A song list heavy with covers. Jackson Browne on piano. An extraordinary example of utterly masterful sequencing. Sometimes a band is in such a groove that it demands to be captured live. But making a live album that reflects being on the road, recorded literally on the road? Cutting tracks in a Holiday Inn room in Edwardsville, IL, or on a moving tour bus, complete with grinding gears? Even today with all the digital advances in home recording gear, it still seems like a disaster in the making. In addition, none of the material had ever appeared on a Browne studio record. A shambling cover of Rev. Gary Davis's "Cocaine" and a rendition of Maurice Williams' (The Zodiacs) "Stay"—with David Lindley memorably singing the falsetto part—are both knockouts. "You Love the Thunder," recorded live in Holmdel, NJ, is a classic Jackson Browne love song, one of the last before he turned to political themes. And then there’s the album's heart: the epic Lowell George/Browne/Valerie Carter collaboration, "Love Needs a Heart." It's the one tune worth having the entire record for: "Love needs a heart/And I need to find/If love needs a heart like mine." As this fresh remastering proves again, Browne and his merry band of SoCal pros better known as The Section drew a masterpiece out of the hat with Running on Empty. © Robert Baird / Qobuz
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Pop - Released June 21, 2019 | Rhino - Elektra

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Pop - Released May 30, 2019 | Rhino - Elektra

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Pop - Released November 9, 2018 | Rhino - Elektra

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