Editors' Choice for September 2011

Hip-O
Alice Cooper's sequel to 1975's Welcome to My Nightmare is a star-studded affair that modernizes his shock rock via cameos from Ke$ha and Vince Gill.
- Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Drag City
Half torch songs and half laments, Disturbing the Air is some of Azita's clearest, most vulnerable music.
- Heather Phares
Thrill Jockey
Barn Owl's Jon Porras and Evan Caminiti have augmented and expanded their sonic terrain on Lost in the Glare.
- Thom Jurek
Greedhead Music
Rap
Hip-O Select
R&B
A thorough anthology of DeBarge's four 1981-1985 albums for Motown's Gordy subsidiary, featuring six Top Ten R&B hits.
- Andy Kellman
Reprise / Rhino / Warner Bros.
In a partnership more comfortable than some might expect, Marsalis and Clapton play the music they love with palpable joy and natural chemistry.
- Rovi Staff
Metal Blade
French duo Glorior Belli deliver plenty of doom and darkness on The Great Southern Darkness.
- Gregory Heaney
Columbia
Rap
After numerous mixtapes, the talented rapper makes his official debut on Jay-Z's Roc Nation label.
- David Jeffries
Megaforce
Johnny Winter’s first new studio album in over seven years features Winter and guests brilliantly covering 11 classic blues numbers.
- Steve Leggett
Sony Music
Kasabian’s fourth effort is the mind-bending Velociraptor!, an ambitious whirlwind featuring the single "Days Are Forgotten."
- David Jeffries
Comedy Central Records
A highly desirable gift for fans of Lewis Black, The Prophet features an archival 1990 recording of the comedian.
- David Jeffries
42West / Buckingham / Mind Kit Records
Lindsey Buckingham's Seeds We Sow is his home-recorded, self-released debut. Alternative music never sounded so good.
- Thom Jurek
Family Vineyard
On Red Mars, his first new solo work since 2004, Loren Connors presents a new direction and an inner view of outer space.
- Thom Jurek
Barsuk
Mates of State's sixth album is as enthusiastic, focused, and packed with hooky indie rock as ever; they show no signs of slowing down after a decade in the business.
- Tim Sendra
Columbia / Legacy / Sony Music
The Bootleg Series, Vol. 1 features Miles' second quintet in Europe at its fiery best on three previously unreleased CDs and a DVD.
- Thom Jurek
Mom + Pop Music / Static Tongues
Era Extraña finds Neon Indian's Alan Palomo growing beyond chillwave's confines while staying in touch with his pop instincts.
- Heather Phares
Yep Roc
Nick Lowe doesn't change speeds on The Old Magic, but he still delivers a charming collection of crooning pop and Americana.
- Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Roadrunner Records
Heritage is the bravest, most musically adventurous, and wildly excessive album in Opeth's career.
- Thom Jurek
Comedy Central Records
The comedian grows older and discovers “The Miracle of Sweatpants” on this hilarious effort.
- David Jeffries
Asthmatic Kitty
Rafter Roberts (of Rafter) and Simon Lord (of the Black Ghosts) collaborate on a charmingly low-key and off-kilter dance-pop album.
- Tim Sendra
Hardly Art
On their debut album, Shimmering Stars mine the ghostly echoes of '50s and '60s dream pop and come up with an impressively sweet and haunting indie pop sound.
- Tim Sendra
4AD
Strange Mercy is St. Vincent’s most reflective and most audacious album to date.
- Heather Phares
Stones Throw
The group's fun Stones Throw debut appropriates psychedelic funk, classic R&B, and roots-based soul.
- Jason Lymangrover
Various Artists
Tompkins Square
This May Be My Last Time Singing features goespel 45 RPMs influenced by the prime R&B, blues and soul eras.
- Thom Jurek
Slumberland
Veronica Falls' debut album is a thrilling blend of indie pop hooks, punk energy, and post-punk gloom, sweetened by Roxanne Clifford's captivating vocals.
- Tim Sendra
Merge
The debut of this '90s indie supergroup is one of 2011's most dynamic rock albums.
- Heather Phares
Thrill Jockey
On West, Wooden Shjips push their psychotic neo-psychedelia to the breaking point.
- Thom Jurek