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Sean Daly's CD reviews: TV on the Radio, Oasis, Demi Lovato, Camille Saint-Saens

TV on the Radio

Album: Dear Science (DGC/Interscope)

In stores: Now

Why we care: One of my top bands — even though they leave me utterly confounded — these Brooklyn art-rockers turn pop inside out, discarding the candy shell and exploring the guts of New Wave, disco, punk. The lyrics are Wonderlandian — Dylanesque rambles set on stun — but media apathy (Crying, Dancing Choose) and the war (Red Dress) are obvious targets.

Why we like it: Vocalists Kyp Malone and Tunde Adebimpe, and producer David Sitek get a perverse pleasure in cross-breeding genres: Talking Heads as a ska band, Coldplay leveled by apathy. What could be a gimmick comes off as natural, moving, unforgettable.

Reminds us of: One of the best albums of '08

Download these: Crying and Family Tree

Grade: A


Album: Dig Out Your Soul (Big Brother)

In stores: Now

Why we care: Right about the time they stopped directly biting from the Beatles, Oasis started to bite. So wisely enough, Gallagher goons Noel and Liam have gone back to digging out their Rubber Soul. The result isn't the pure pop majesty of 1995's (What's the Story) Morning Glory?, one of the great rock albums of all time. (C'mon, you gotta love Champagne Supernova.) But on Dig Out Your Soul, they get back to tasty guitars, swoony choruses and blatant Fab homage ("love is a litany, a magical mystery").

Why we like it: The album is top-heavy, as Noel writes the first several janglers, before giving things up to far less catchy Liam & Co.

Reminds us of: The glory daze of Brit-pop

Download this: Waiting for the Rapture

Grade: B-

Demi Lovato

Album: Don't Forget (Hollywood)

In stores: Now

Why we care: With Miley Cyrus threatening to ditch the Mouse House, Disney needs to warm up a new girl rocker just in case. Lovato, who starred with those dreamy Jonas Brothers in hit cable movie Camp Rock, is a drums-and-guitars gal, with Queenly touches of glam here and there.

Why we like it: It's not all that inventive, or even memorable, but give the 16-year-old credit for ignoring the Auto-Tune button and opting for a neo-Benatar vibe. Not sure if she'll be charting a year from now, but hanging with the JoBros sure doesn't hurt your tween rep.

Reminds us of: On an infamous YouTube clip, Cyrus took shots at Lovato, a Mean Girls move that turned off lots of fans. Get her, girls.

Download these: Get Back and Party

Grade: C


Camille Saint-Saens

Song: Aquarium from Carnival of the Animals

In stores: Now

Why we care: Twice last week — once on Sirius radio, the other as the trailer soundtrack for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button — I came across this puckishly ominous piece of classical music and immediately said, "Danny Elfman." My father seconded that: "Sounds like music from a Tim Burton movie." We were both wrong. It's the seventh movement from 1886's Carnival of the Animals by French composer Camille Saint-Saens (1835-1921). It's mesmerizing music-box piano for the shadowy hours past your bedtime.

Why we like it: There are several versions of Aquarium, but you can't go wrong with Leonard Bernstein with the New York Philharmonic or Arthur Fiedler with the Boston Pops.

Reminds us of: Edward Scissorhands

Grade: A

Sean Daly's CD reviews: TV on the Radio, Oasis, Demi Lovato, Camille Saint-Saens 10/11/08 [Last modified: Monday, October 13, 2008 1:44pm]
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