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The Early Bird: Top New Releases 7-5-19 – 7-11-19

“Goodbyes” us a hugely important single for Post Malone. “Wow” and “Sunflower” have been in the top ten for nearly the entire year, both were released in 2018, and that makes “Goodbyes” (featuring a fair verse from Young Thug),Post’s first release of the year except for a remix and a DJ Khalid verse. A dog would hurt the brand and “Goodbyes,” a beautiful, anthemic ballad not a million miles from “Sunflowers” doesn’t come close: a sad break up song for a woman who is a mess. As heartfelt as possible, it should go straight to # 1 and remain there indefinitely (Grade: A).

Speaking about hurting the brand, there is nothing much we’ve heard from Ed Sheeran so far that equals “Perfect” or “Shape Of Me” -though the Justin Bieber single was a goodie. Here are two more, the Foo Fightery “Blow” featuring Chris Stapleton and Bruno Mars is a boring stomper (Grade: B-) and “Best Part Of Me” -one of those ballads Ed manufactures at will, featuring Khalid’s find Yebba on a verse and harmony,  is cookie cutter Ed (Grade: B-). Speaking of Foo Fighters, the three song, live from the Reading Festival in 1995, 00950025 , is one of their better efforts “Wattershed” (off their eponymous debut) is a strong little rocker, an inspired “Spin The Black Circle” rip (Grade: B).

I’ve been thinking of writing a post about how, with the exception of saving grace Latin pop, the first half of 2019 has proven to be the worst of the decade, the first step back since the Black Eyed Peas’ 2009 “I Gotta Feeling”,” and more proof of Latin Pop surging is how a week after J. Balvin and Bad Bunny’s epic banger album Oasis, ROSALÍA’s Fucking Money Man two song EP joins Post Malone as one of the best of the year, “Milionària” not only has one of the great hooks, it is an earworm badass of monumental proportions, earth bending Flamenco (Grade: A).

Two new George Jones albums, a live from 1979 sharing an entire, better than when I saw him in the mid-00s gig,  Back In The Saddle, might just be only = new to streaming but it is new to me as well, a little obvious (and the applause sound fake), it is perfunctory and great at the same time (Grade: B+). If United Artist, or anyone else, wanted to do the world a favor, they would get together with other labels and slap Jones’ recordings in some form of order. Till then, the United Artist years (1962-1966) were great and United Artists Rarities adds some alternate takes and some songs not yet heard (Grade: A-).

Jaden (Will Smith’s son) can get a little too out there for my tastes but he is at least a real original coming from a similar place to latter day Tyler The Creator, who joins Jaden for a song on ERYS, as does his sister WIllow and A$AP Rocky -heavy into post-LSD rap, and Kid Cudi, who had a hand in creating strange, mood music rap (Grade: B). Ten of the eighteen J Cole and friends Dreamville Revenge Of The Dreamers III tracks on have been dropped as singles this year, and I am not crazy about em, no “Neighbors” here, but I am always slow to pick up on J Cole so I’ll have to listen more (Grade: B-)

Revenge Of The Dreamers III – Dreamville, J. Cole- B-

Best Part of Me (feat. YEBBA) – Ed Sheeran, YEBBA – B-

BLOW (with Chris Stapleton & Bruno Mars) – Ed Sheeran, Chris Stapleton, Bruno Mars – B-

00950025 – Foo Fighters – B

Back In The Saddle (Live 1979) – George Jones – B+

United Artists Rarities – George Jones – A-

ERYS – Jaden – B

Goodbyes – Post Malone – A

Fucking Money Man – ROSALÍA – A

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