New Reviews for December 1, 2023

I/OEditor's choice
Real World Records
The art rocker returns with his first album of original material in 20 years: a probing collection filled with empathetic new beginnings.
- Stephen Thomas Erlewine
A Portrait of the Queen 1970-1974Editor's choice
BMG Rights Management
R&B
A sharply presented box containing expanded editions of the Queen of Soul's first five '70s studio albums.
- Andy Kellman
Violent Femmes [40th Anniversary Deluxe Edition]Editor's choice
Craft Recordings / Craft Records
The 40th anniversary edition of this groundbreaking alt-rock classic includes early demos and live recordings from concerts in 1981 and 1983.
- Fred Thomas
AlbionEditor's choice
Bella Union
A canny blend of folk-influenced songs with post-punk-informed arrangements on this album from former Midlake singer Tim Smith.
- Mark Deming
Salvage Enterprise
Good Records Recordings
Warm folk harmonies and uplifting emotions mark the psych pop group's eighth album.
- Matt Collar
2 Ruff, Vol. 1
Casablanca / EMI / EMI Records
A brief but potent mixtape of drum'n'bass dancefloor heaters, with featured guests including Flowdan, Stefflon Don, and Clementine Douglas.
- Paul Simpson
Never a Dull Moment! Live from Coast to Coast 1966-1967Editor's choice
Resonance
These unreleased live instrumental performances by Les McCann's early trios are a welcome, wonderful-sounding surprise.
- Thom Jurek
Czartificial Intelligence
Silver Age
Rap
The comic-themed rap supergroup continue their saga, mixing playful bravado with moments of nostalgic reflection.
- Paul Simpson
Birth, School, Work, Death
AllMusic Staff Pick - December 3, 2023
1988
A searing opening salvo from the underrated U.K. rock band whose best known song, "Birth, School, Work, Death" led off their excellent major label debut.
- Timothy Monger