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Film Soundtracks - Released December 9, 2016 | UMGRI Interscope

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Film Soundtracks - Released February 24, 2017 | UMGRI Interscope

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R&B - Released November 2, 2018 | UMGRI Interscope

U.K. singer Jacob Banks took a long, slow road to his debut studio album Village, first releasing his genre-bending take on blues-indebted R&B on a 2013 EP and trickling out tracks and brief collections from there. While colorful and shifting styles have always been a part of Banks' music, Village offers the highest-definition presentation of his many approaches, as he plays with sonic switch-ups and wandering moods across the 15 spacious tracks. The album starts with the bombastic single "Chainsmoking," where Banks' baritone guides the aching song through a mesh of rocked-out blues and dubstep bass. This pastiche approach comes up a lot on Village, with several songs flitting between different musical modes and sometimes turning on a dime. "Love Ain't Enough" is perhaps the most intense example of this nervous genre switching, as Banks begins the tune as a bass-heavy blues-pop lament and ends it as a full-on ragga drum'n'bass, complete with breakbeat samples and dubbed-out deejay toasting. Moments of neo-soul, tropical pop, and dubstep show up from moment to moment and "Keeps Me Going" ties pop production to Nigerian rhythms, as Banks reflects on his early life there. When he stays on one page long enough, the results can be powerful. The dark and dramatic ballad "Unknown (To You)" would sound at home in a post-break-up montage of any big-romantic comedy, boiling heartbreak down into something accessible and immediate. The more subdued "Slow Up" reads like a letter from Banks to his younger self, hoping to impart everything he's learned over a beautifully atmospheric track. For all its strengths, Village is inconsistent and the songs often seem to be aiming for sentiments they don't quite reach. Overloaded with ideas, several songs on the second half could have been left off the album and resulted in a bolder whole. Though Banks never drowns under his own ambition on Village, the album struggles with focus. Inspired songs compete with lesser tracks in almost equal numbers, giving the album more of a mixtape feel than the statement it could have made with more fastidious editing. © Fred Thomas /TiVo

Pop - Released January 4, 2019 | UMGRI Interscope

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This eponymous collection brings together a selection of previously released tracks from Irish singer/songwriter Dermot Kennedy. The album features a number of fan favorites including "Power Over Me," "After Rain," and "A Closeness." © TiVo
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Film Soundtracks - Released December 9, 2016 | UMGRI Interscope

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This is the Oscar-winning score to Damien Chazelle's 2016 musical film, La La Land. Composed and orchestrated by Justin Hurwitz, the album also features the standout track "City of Stars," which features vocals from lead actors Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone. © Rich Wilson /TiVo
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Film Soundtracks - Released December 9, 2016 | UMGRI Interscope

Booklet
A musical romance about a jazz pianist (Ryan Gosling) and an aspiring actress (Emma Stone) set in the City of Angels, La La Land was written and directed by Damien Chazelle, the man behind the 2014 Oscar winner Whiplash. He enlisted his former Harvard roommate Justin Hurwitz to write the songs and score for the film. The pair also worked together on Whiplash, about drummers, and on a 2009 student project that went on to receive theatrical distribution, Guy and Madeline on a Park Bench, about a jazz trumpeter. Hurwitz is joined here by lyricists Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, two veterans of musical theater (the off-Broadway musical Dogfight, TV's Smash, Broadway's Dear Evan Hansen) at the relatively young age of 31 by the time of release. (The latter is also true of Chazelle and Hurwitz.) La La Land's original soundtrack includes both songs and instrumentals, with the songs performed by a cast that also includes John Legend, fresh off his Oscar win for Selma's "Glory," and Callie Hernandez, a musician-turned-actress. Hernandez performs alongside Stone, Jessica Rothe, and Sonoya Mizuno on "Someone in the Crowd," a soaring, uptempo number with swing-era rhythms. Preceding it, the film opens with a big production number set in L.A. traffic that Hurwitz said was inspired by Jacques Demy-Michel Legrand film musicals of the '60s ("Another Day of Sun"). While listeners and moviegoers alike will find that Gosling and Stone don't quite have the singing chops of an Astaire and Rogers, their voices are warm and approachable, and their duet "A Lovely Night," in particular, is a bright charmer. Later, Legend delivers the goods on "Start a Fire," a song written in the context of a jazz musician trying to cross over to the contemporary mainstream. Score tracks range from the tender-slash-anxious piano piece "Mia & Sebastian's Theme," to the legit jazz exercise "Herman's Habit," to the Romantic tone poem "Planetarium." The film and the soundtrack wrap up with a second reprise of Gosling's "City of Stars," this time hummed by Stone, which will likely provide a feel-good earworm after the music ends. © Marcy Donelson /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released June 3, 2016 | UMGRI Interscope

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Alternative & Indie - Released June 22, 2018 | UMGRI Interscope

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Alternative & Indie - Released June 10, 2016 | UMGRI Interscope

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Film Soundtracks - Released August 23, 2019 | UMGRI Interscope

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Film Soundtracks - Released May 18, 2018 | UMGRI Interscope

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Dance - Released January 23, 2018 | UMGRI Interscope

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Pop - Released April 5, 2019 | UMGRI Interscope

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Dance - Released February 23, 2017 | UMGRI Interscope

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Ambient/New Age - Released October 26, 2018 | UMGRI Interscope

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Hip-Hop/Rap - Released October 26, 2018 | UMGRI Interscope

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Nearly a decade after the release of their previous album, 2010's The Beginning, the Black Eyed Peas truly take it back to the start on their triumphant seventh set, Masters of the Sun, Vol. 1. A lot changed in their eight-year absence: Fergie left the group, reducing BEP to the original trio of will.i.am, apl.de.ap, and Taboo, while the former pair spent time on solo music and judging television singing competitions and the latter beat cancer. Throw in a turbulent period of American politics and social turmoil and the Peas finally had something to say beyond mindlessly repetitive, party-starting platitudes and odes to "My Humps." A return to their roots, Masters of the Sun reclaims their late-'90s boom-bap sound -- recruiting an iconic crew of New York MCs to really drive the point home -- on a satisfying (and surprising) set that is cohesive both in theme and sound. The acid jazz throwback production is strong, with a soulful downbeat vibe flowing throughout, while the three BEP rappers tackle topics such as race relations, gun violence, police brutality, and social media addiction ("RING THE ALARM" and "BIG LOVE"), with a touch of hip-hop boasting for good measure. They sound revitalized and refreshed like a post-millennial Digable Planets or Tribe, pushing these head-bobbing beats and dexterous lyrics like the 2000s never happened. Godzilla-stomp horns herald the time warp back to the Golden Era on "BACK 2 HIPHOP" with Nas, continuing with enough soul and jazz-sampled tracks to bring a tear to the eye of any self-professed old head. Later, Slick Rick drops in on "CONSTANT" -- via a "La Di Da Di" sample -- and the late Phife Dawg and his Tribe brother Ali Shaheed Muhammad join forces with De La Soul's Posdnuos on "ALL AROUND THE WORLD," a dizzying talent cypher that BEP bill as "A Tribe Called De La Pea." On these standouts, the sonic familiarity and focus on verbal skill is utterly refreshing, especially in the world of 2018 trap and mumble rap. Elsewhere, pop-leaning guests provide mainstream polish without distracting from the hip-hop focus. In an obvious callback, trip-hop chanteuse Esthero reprises her role from BEP's 2000 single "Weekends," appearing on the jazzy bossa nova "4EVER." Nicole Scherzinger -- originally approached for the position before it went to Fergie and also once considered as her replacement -- delivers sultry vocals and a "Tom's Diner" hook to "WINGS," while K-pop rapper CL contributes an aggressive verse that stands tall beside the Peas on "DOPENESS." Without the electro distractions of The E.N.D. and The Beginning, or the pop-rap jock jams of Elephunk and Monkey Business, the Black Eyed Peas remind listeners of the pure skill and talent preceding all their radio-dominating chart hits from the 2000s, bridging the proverbial gap back to a time when will.i.am, apl.de.ap, and Taboo simply spit over a great beat. Masters of the Sun, Vol. 1 is a welcome and gratifying return to form, a catalog highlight decades into their careers. © Neil Z. Yeung /TiVo
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Dance - Released July 18, 2018 | UMGRI Interscope

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Film Soundtracks - Released June 3, 2016 | UMGRI Interscope

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Alternative & Indie - Released August 28, 2020 | UMGRI Interscope

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Ambient/New Age - Released October 6, 2017 | UMGRI Interscope

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Showbiz has been in Gwen Stefani's blood since the start of her career, which is the reason why she, unlike many '90s alt-rock veterans, can seem at home within the confines of the televised musical competition The Voice. Her very presence on The Voice, one of the last genuinely popular franchises on network television in the 2010s, guaranteed the existence of an album like You Make It Feel Like Christmas, one that's pitched directly in the mainstream. You Make It Feel Like Christmas plays upon her romance with co-host Blake Shelton, making her bouncy duet with the country singer the album's title track and first single. "You Make It Feel Like Christmas" bops along to a Motown beat, just one of many intentional nostalgic nods at the past -- "Never Kissed Anyone with Blue Eyes" grooves to a simmering '60s soul groove, her version of "Santa Baby" has a mid-century swing, Wham!'s "Last Christmas" is given drippy strings that turn it into a girl group number -- but the record is surprisingly heavy on new material for a holiday album. Occasionally, this means Stefani veers into territory that doesn't feel strictly seasonal: "When I Was a Little Girl" plays like a diary entry, not a memory of Christmases past, "My Gift Is You" is a love song bearing the faintest hint of mistletoe, and "Never Kissed Anyone with Blue Eyes" has only a tangential relationship with Christmas. They don't seem out of place, since they're given the same bells and whistles as "Let It Snow" and "White Christmas," but they also diminish the album, making it seem smaller than the season. Still, the moments that work have a coquettish charm that is appealing, which is reason enough to warrant a listen. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo