Most people under 30 favor downloads over CDs these days, but the long-player isn't going away-yet. We rank this season's releases in order of which ones we'll run out and buy first.
Day & Age (Island)
The ’80s-loving Vegas showmen put the Bruce Springsteen influences back in the closet for their third album. Citing Bowie as a new muse, the quartet hooked up with neodisco producer Stuart “Les Rythmes Digitales” Price, who squeezed the last few hooks out of Madonna on her Confessions on a Dance Floor. November.
Don’t Stop (Island)
The Norwegian roller-rink disciple wrote an entire song about bubblegum on her debut. Only hipsters cared, but this time she’s poised to be at least the new Kylie, if not the Hannah Montana for hybrid drivers. Oct 7.
Dig Out Your Soul (Sony)
The “Sex Beatles” (as they were once famously dubbed) finally return to form. Yeah, we know: They say that before every album. But this time they’re weirder, bigger and braver. Oct 7.
Off with Their Heads (Universal Motown)
The Britpop revivalists teamed up with Amy Winehouse–Lily Allen producer Mark Ronson for their third album. But Ronson swears there’s not a single Motown-ripping horn on the whole damn thing. Lily Allen is on there, though. Oct 14.
Thr33 Ringz (Jive)
The king of Auto-Tune stretches his ubiquitous robotic croak over an entire circus-themed album of zeitgeisty rap and R&B. This’ll have more guests than the Las Vegas Hilton, too. Sept 30.
Also out this fall
Metallica, Death Magnetic (September 12); Musiq Soulchild, On My Radio (September 16); Pussycat Dolls, Doll Domination (September 16); Cold War Kids, Loyalty to Loyalty (September 23); Brightblack Morning Light, Motion to Rejoin (September 23); Mogwai, The Hawk Is Howling (September 23); Plain White T’s, Big Bad World (September 23); Ben Folds, Way to Normal (September 30); T.I., Paper Trail (September 30); Of Montreal, Skeletal Lamping (October 7); AC/DC, Black Ice (October 21); The Sea & Cake, Car Alarm (October 21); Deerhunter, Microcastle (October 28); Big Boi, Sir Lucious Left Foot (November 4); Kelly Clarkson, title TBA (November 18); U2, No Line on the Horizon (November 18).
Check out the other sections in our 2008 Fall Preview: