New Releases: Rush, Jimmy Fallon, Bobby Womack

Let’s take a look at this week’s albums, reissues and other musical goodies from classic artists making musical waves yet again.

Spotlight Release of the Week: Rush’s first album in five years, Clockwork Angels, finally dropped this week, and it’s a doozy. The album is a conceptual steampunk adventure that, in the band’s words, “features lost cities, pirates, anarchists, an exotic carnival, and a rigid watchmaker who imposes precision on every aspect of daily life.” And apparently Rush drummer and lyricist Neil Peart is working with science fiction author Kevin J. Anderson to pen a novelization of Clockwork Angels. The album opens with two singles the prog-rock trio released in 2010, “Caravan” and “BU2B,” and features new single “Headlong Fight,” which the band released back in April. Watch the “Headlong Fight” video below.

Also out this week is Late Night host Jimmy Fallon’s second album, titled Blow Your Pants Off. It is not, as some might expect from the SNL alum, a stand-up album, but rather, a collection of musical parodies (mostly) from Late Night. The catch is that Fallon gets an assist from his famous pals like Paul McCartney, Bruce Springsteen, Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder, Justin Timberlake and Dave Matthews. Remember, for instance, McCartney and Fallon performing an early version of the Beatles’ “Yesterday,” “Scrambled Eggs”? Now you can own it. Fallon also impersonates classic rockers like Neil Young and Bob Dylan on Blow Your Pants Off.

Following a surgery for suspected colon cancer last month, legendary (and now cancer-free) soul singer Bobby Womack makes his return with The Bravest Man in the Universe this week. For his first album in 10+ years, Womack reteamed with the man who set off his late career resurgence, Gorillaz mastermind Damon Albarn, who featured Womack Gorillaz’s Plastic Beach album. The partnership spawned an electronic soul record with an instrumental sparsity that highlight’s Womack’s signature vocals.

Finally, ’70s brass-rockers Chicago returns to their namesake city for a live DVD/Bluray, Chicago in Chicago, released this week. The HD footage was shot at a 2010 concert in Chicago, which featured the Doobie Brothers.

– Jillian Mapes, CBS Local


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