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New This Week: Gregg Allman, Jack Johnson, Tori Amos, and more

Wendy Geller
Writer, Yahoo Entertainment

Searching for something to listen to this weekend? Yahoo Music has you covered with a rundown of some of this week’s biggest and buzzing releases, including Gregg Allman, Jack Johnson, Tori Amos, and more. Check back every Friday for a fresh list of albums to help fuel your weekend playlists.

Gregg Allman: Southern Blood (Rounder). The late legend’s final album, released posthumously, is a fitting farewell. Produced by Don Was and recorded in Muscle Shoals — ground zero for the Allman Brothers Band — it includes songs written by some of Allman’s friends and favorite fellow artists, including Jackson Browne, Willie Dixon, Jerry Garcia & Robert Hunter, Lowell George, and Spooner Oldham & Dan Penn.

Jack Johnson: All The Light Above It Too (Brushfire / Republic). The ordinarily mellow Hawaiian folk-rocker takes on politics in his latest set, while maintaining his trademark
breezy groove. A key note inspiring the album was a trip sailing through the Atlantic while making a documentary about plastic pollution in the ocean.

Tori Amos: Native Invader (Decca). The veteran singer-songwriter goes au naturel on her 15th studio album and first since 2014’s Unrepentant Geraldines. The album focuses on nature and its destruction, as well as her personal experiences in her trademark confessional delivery.

Thomas Rhett: Life Changes (Valory). The genre-bending country singer attracted attention for his ability to blend R&B, soul, and rock skillfully into his rootsy vibe. Here, on his third release, he flexes his chops with guests Maren Morris on the No. 1 country hit “Craving You” and his father Rhett Atkins on “Drink a Little Beer.”

The National: Sleep Well Beast (4AD). Back with their first album since 2013’s Trouble Will Find Me, the indie stalwarts make a play to see if they can be the next big thing to hit the mainstream.

The Dream Syndicate: How Did I Find Myself Here? (ANTI-Epitaph). It’s been 29 years since these ’80s standouts have released an album: They reunited in 2012, and after a solid touring schedule, settled down to record. The disc stays true to the band’s original sound.

Kip Moore: SLOWHEART (MCA Nashville). Country heartthrob Moore stands out among the male Nashville singer pack with his independent and somewhat moody third release, an album of well-crafted stories that suggests he’s not out to run with the pack.

Sparks: Hippopotamus (The End). The Mael brothers return with their first album under the Sparks name since 2009’s The Seduction of Ingmar Bergman. They continue their art-pop aesthetic here with 15 new songs.

Deerhoof: Mountain Moves (Joyful Noise). The indie band has been pumping out diverse and multifaceted tunes for quite some time — this marks its 14th album, and it displays a wider range of experimentation than ever, including covers of of the Staple Singers’ “Freedom Highway” and Bob Marley’s “Small Axe.”

Toby Keith: The Bus Songs (Show Dog). Keith is one of the most accomplished and completely self-directed hitmakers in any genre, a rare talent that is more than evident on his latest release. The country star recruits the legendary Willie Nelson for the video for viral hit “Wacky Tobaccy,” just one of many witty tunes included on the set.

Living Colour: Shade (Megaforce / MRI). The band’s first set since 2009 features production from Andre Betts, who first worked with Living Colour on their album Stain in 1993. The trademark heavy sound is here, layered with a chameleon-like changing shimmer that keeps things interesting.

Dustin Lynch: Current Mood (Broken Bow). Lynch, who won initial accolades for his solid country approach, decides to branch out and expand his range on this set — testing out different influences and sounds. He co-wrote more than half the songs, assuring fans that these ideas are indeed his very own.

Jonny Lang: Signs (Concord). The guitar virtuoso dives way deep into his beloved blues on his latest album, bringing forth raw and elemental sonic aspects of the genre that might not have been apparent to casual aficionados. An interesting exercise overall.

Tony Allen: The Source (Blue Note). Longtime Fela Kuti drummer Tony Allen blends jazz, Afrobeat, and his own undefinable touch on this innovative hybrid set. Damon Albarn makes a cool guest appearance on one song.

The Waterboys: Out of All This Blue (The End/BMG Rights Management). Produced by Mike Scott and recorded in Dublin and Tokyo, this rare double CD provides fans with a shot of the band’s colorful pop sensibilities.

Alter Bridge: Live at the O2 Arena + Rarities (Napalm). This live set captures the band’s November 24, 2016 show in London, a landmark concert for the group. The 2-CD package includes a full disc of raritie featuring limited releases, as well as seven songs that have only come out to date in Japan.

Zola Jesus: Okovi (Sacred Bones). Nika Roza Danilova (aka Zola Jesus) serves up 11 electronically driven songs on this dark, exploratory release plumbing such emotional subjects as loss and reconciliation.