Lulu
Lulu

Lou Reed / Metallica

Lulu

November 1, 2011

Album Rock

The album everyone loves to hate, this 2011 collaboration between Lou Reed and Metallica seemed destined to rub fans of both acts the wrong way. But despite its many flaws and it's reputation as an epic scale disaster, Lulu is worth a listen -- Metallica gave Reed the wall of guitar he'd always dreamed of, Reed's lyrics were rarely this bravely abrasive, and the closer, "Junior Dad," is an overlooked classic.

- Mark Deming

The Brand New Heavies
The Brand New Heavies

The Brand New Heavies

The Brand New Heavies

June 1, 1990

Acid Jazz

Many of the artists who were part of Britain's soul scene of the late '80s/early '90s, including Soul II Soul, Lisa Stansfield, and Caron Wheeler, took a high-tech, neo-soul approach, combining '70s-influenced R&B and disco with elements of hip-hop. The equally impressive Brand New Heavies, however, used technology sparingly, stressed the use of real instruments, and were unapologetically retro and '70s-sounding through and through. Drawing on such influences as the Average White Band and Tower of Power, the Heavies triumph by sticking with the classic R&B approach they clearly love the most.

- Alex Henderson