Searching for something to listen to this weekend? Yahoo Music has you covered with a rundown of some of this week’s biggest/buzzing releases, including Ed Sheeran, Temples, Dia Frampton, and more. Check back every Friday for a fresh list of albums to help fuel your weekend playlists.
Ed Sheeran: Divide (Atlantic). Sheeran continues with his symbol-titled album theme, choosing an obelus to represent his highly anticipated third release. It lives up to expectations, showcasing Sheeran’s ever-increasingly polished grasp on chart-friendly yet exploratory material.
Save Ferris: Checkered Past (Withyn). Save Ferris made an impact on the robust punk-ska scene back in the ‘90s, with frontwoman Monique Powell serving as a sort of red-haired counterpoint to No Doubt’s Gwen Stefani. This five-song EP marks the band’s first new material in 15 years. Despite its title, the record treads familiar ska pathways rather than anything off the beaten track.
Dia Frampton: Bruises (Nettwerk). The Voice star gets autobiographical on her sophomore release, traversing a variety of introspective themes ranging from positive to negative. The constant is her powerful vocals, as well as her penchant for a rich, orchestral vibe.
Colin Hay: Fierce Mercy (Compass). Hay is well known as the frontman of ‘80s hitmakers Men at Work, but his solo career has been far more prolific than his output with that band. This marks his 13th release, and it’s an appealing mix of pop and Americana tied together with Hay’s undeniable talent for turning a phrase.
Bela Fleck: Juno Concerto (Rounder). Banjo virtuoso Fleck explores the emotions of fatherhood in this release, named for his firstborn son. The album was recorded with the Colorado Symphony, conducted by José Luis Gomez and also includes two tracks with the Brooklyn Rider string quartet.
Temples: Volcano (Fat Possum). Temples won a legion of admirers with their 2014 debut, which paid homage to such icons as Pink Floyd, David Bowie, and T. Rex. Their sophomore release continues to lay heavy on the psychedelic angle as they continue to technically hone their well-researched sound.
Danko Jones: Wild Cat (AFM). Canadian hard-rock trio Danko Jones is all about straight-up, loud, and macho tunes glorifying the good things in life — sex, partying, and the like. It’s business as usual on their latest album, so here’s a perfect excuse to crank it up and forget about the problems of the world for a little while.
The Magnetic Fields: 50 Song Memoir (Nonesuch). This ambitious five-CD/five-LP set chronicles the 50 years of songwriter Stephin Merritt’s life with one song per year. In addition to his writing and vocal duties, Merritt plays more than 100 instruments on the collection, ranging from ukulele to piano to drum machine to abacus.
Grandaddy: Last Place (30th Century). Although they’ve technically been around for a quarter century, Grandaddy has lain dormant for the past 10 years as the group’s primary songwriter, Jason Lytle, explored solo work. The band’s new release harks back to its classic indie sound, filled with hooks and moods to spare.
X Japan: We Are X (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack) (Legacy Recordings). Although staggeringly popular in its native country and throughout the rest of the world, metal band X Japan has never been able to quite match that success in the United States. A 2016 documentary about the group’s unique and, at times, tragic history — centered on the experience of bandleader/drummer Yoshiki —helped to change that, bringing awareness to American fans about its pioneering influence on the Japanese “visual rock” scene. This is the official soundtrack to the film, which offers both new and classic material from the Japanese icons.