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Be Here Early: Choice New Albums Reviewed 12-1-16 – 12-22-16


A State Of Trance Year Mix 2016 (Mixed by Armin Van Buuren) – Armin Van Buuren – The best rave I ever went to was an Armin gig at MSG, melodic dance if you will that has all the elements of house in tact but with more of an accent on songs. On record, he has his uses for sure, but this has been going on forever and is kinda old fashioned in an awesome way – B+

This House Is Not A Home (Live From The London Palladium) – Bon Jovi – Of course it is terrible, the songs are terrible so how can live versions do anything but suck? Still, it is certainly NOT as terrible. The deluxe take, so three extra bad songs – C-

The Return Of East Atlanta Santa – Gucci Mane – Sure, it’s just another mix tape from the first runner up to artist of the year, but it is a good one. Very good. The “St. Brick Intro” is a clever use of a Season song sample, and “I Can’t” is so clever a sample, expecting to hear in in more than a coupla songs next year. Drake’s here as well, both drunk and high. A fine addition to pantheon, if not the eagerly anticipated return and enough Christmas music to justify the title – B+

Passion, Pain And Demon Slayin’ – Kid Cudi – Not the hard rockin’ Cudi of the last album, this harks back to his Man On The Moon period, a good thing. Very strong, the track with Willow Smith – B

16 & Runnin Resurrected – Lil Snupe – Released December 16th and immediately enters my top 20 of the year, the late great teenage rapper has the sort of flow legends are born from, the sorta rhymin’ that strands lesser gangsta. A mix tape (his third posthumous) mixes tracks from gis 2012 “16 And Runnin'” and unreleased, all of a piece. Our biggest loss since Big L – A-

Tony Bennett At 90 – Various Artists – I was at Radio City when they recorded this and with the exception oif Tony it was not very good at all. That “Ave Maria” has to be put down – C


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