Owl City's upbeat and irrepressible new album The Midsummer Station leads off this week's top new pop releases.
Owl City blasted into the pop mainstream in 2009 with the #1 pop smash hit single "Fireflies." Its success helped the album Ocean Eyes reach platinum certification and the follow up All Things Bright and Beautiful reach the top 10 on the album chart. However, no additional major hit singles were forthcoming. Now Owl City is back with the top 20 hit "Good Time" and a brand new effervescent pop album.
With three albums released between 2005 and 2008 British band Bloc Party rose into the ranks of the most well-respected alternative rock bands. The band then went on hiatus among rumors of a possible breakup. Four is the band's first studio album in four years.
French dance music DJ and producer Martin Solveig broke into the US pop mainstream with the 2010 gold certified single "Hello." The album Smash was released in much of the world in the summer of 2011. Now it finally gets a US release. The UK top 40 pop hit single "The Night Out" is included on the album.
Rock band The Darkness made a huge splash with the 2003 single "I Believe In a Thing Called Love" off their debut album. Unfortunately, following a second album in 2005, the band's lead vocalist Justin Hawkins left and the band went on hiatus. Seven years later they are back with a third studio album. The album is receiving strong positive reviews and includes the AAA radio top 10 hit "Everybody Have a Good Time."
Guitarist and songwriter Ry Cooder is recognized as one of the world's top slide guitar players and a champion of roots music. Election Special is his musical statement on the importance of the upcoming US presidential election.
All five of DJ Khaled's albums have reached the top 5 on both the R&B and rap album charts. His most recent, 2011's We the Best Forever reached #5 on the overall album chart. Kiss the Ring includes the usual wide range of guest artists including Lil Wayne, Chris Brown, Wiz Khalifa, Nicki Minaj, and many more.
Gary Rossington may be the only remaining active original member of Lynyrd Skynyrd, but the band tours and record to keep its southern rock legacy alive. Last Of a Dyin' Breed is the band's thirteenth studio album. Two of the band's studio albums reached the top 10 on the album chart.
English singer-songwriter Bill Fay recorded two albums in 1970 and 1971. They did not sell well, and he disappeared into obscurity. Alt-country band Wilco began playing a cover version of Bill Fay's song "Be Not So Fearful" in concert in recent years. That led to Bill Fay appearing onstage with the group to perform the song. Now he has put together his first new recordings in 40 years for the album Life Is People.
Jam band Dispatch earned a strong following in the late 1990s and released four studio albums. However, the band announced an indefinite hiatus in 2002. After a range of reunions through the years, Dispatch set out on a reunion tour in 2011. Circles Around the Sun is the group's first new studio album in a decade.