When you think about October you think about Autumn, Halloween, and political surprises—when you should be thinking about all the awesome new music that’s coming out. For vinylphiles, we have an awesome selection of new discs to check out, from classic artists like Eric Clapton and Mark Knopfler to modern-day up-and-comers like Elle King and Greta Van Fleet. Fire up your turntable, invite over some friends, and check out the best new records coming out this month.
Sì, by Andrea Bocelli
It has been fourteen years since Andrea Bocelli released an album of all-new material, and there’s no format better suited to appreciate the rich tone of one of the most famous singers on the planet than vinyl. The album features several duets with folks like Ed Sheeran, Josh Groban, Dua Lipa—and Bocelli’s own son Matteo, giving it a modern edge and the potential to find a new audience. It’s clearly the result of Bocelli’s stated desire to find new songs after more than a decade of performing covers and classic material—and music fans everywhere benefit.
She Remembers Everything, by Roseanne Cash
Cash’s first album in four years sees her collaborating with the likes of Kris Kristofferson, Colin Meloy, Elvis Costello, and Sam Phillips among others on songs that make no bones about her having a certain perspective and wisdom. Johnny Cash’s daughter has evolved into a confident artist with her own point of view and her own musical sensibility, and she’s stated that these are songs she could not have written even ten years ago, because they required a certain amount of life experience. For fans of old-school country with influences from every conceivable musical style, this record is going to be a treat.
A Star is Born: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack, by Lady Gaga
Just when you thought you had Lady Gaga (and Bradley Cooper) figured out, they drop a fantastic movie on you, a movie that’s all about music and what it means to us all. You can’t separate the soundtrack from the film, as the songs are part of the story, but Gaga and collaborators Mark Ronson, Cooper, Lukas Nelson, and Diane Warren (among many, many others) have crafted an album of terrific country-rock and pop songs that stand on their own, while also serving to remind you of the emotional highs and lows of what’s turning out to be one of the best movies of the year.
Shake the Spirit, by Elle King
King, who was omnipresent a few years ago with her smash hit “Ex’s and Oh’s,” roars back with a new platter of country-rock tunes inspired by the female musicians she looks up to. King has switched from guitar to bass for this one, and she’s name-checked female bassists like Corey Parks of Nashville Pussy fame and Kim Deal from the Pixies and the Breeders as inspirations for the songs on Shake Your Spirit. Filled with heart and vintage licks, this is an album that will make you think of old-school soul records in a very, very good way.
Happy Xmas, by Eric Clapton
With a mixture of standards like White Christmas, Silent Night, and Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas with more obscure holiday tunes like Home for the Holidays and For Love On Christmas Day, Clapton’s goal here was to inject a bit of bluesy grit into holiday music. The end result is his first album in two years, and his first holiday-themed album ever. Slowhand’s playing is as soulful as ever, so for anyone looking to class up their holiday party playlists with some new blood, this is an obvious buy.
Down the Road Wherever, by Mark Knopfler
Former Dire Straits guitarist and lead singer Knopfler certainly has nothing to prove at this point, but every new release (this is his ninth solo album, and his first in three years) is a reminder that he’s one of the most assured musicians and artists working today. The fourteen songs here are reportedly inspired by various events in his life, giving them a dense, contemplative tone lyrically, but the musicianship is as sleek and tight as ever. Knopfler’s backed by musicians he has worked with extensively before (including Dire Straits keyboardist Guy Fletcher, who coproduced), and the end result is a relaxed, confident record that sounds fantastic.
Anthem of the Peaceful Army, by Greta Van Fleet
When you hear about Michigan’s Greta Van Fleet, you hear about Led Zeppelin. It’s the most obvious and recognizable reference for their throwback sound—but it’s also deceptive, because GVF have taken that old school, proto-metal rock sound from the 1970s and filtered it through a Generation Z point of view, with the end result being that this EP is a clear progression from the band’s first LP, 2017’s From the Fires. Even better, their warm 70s-inspired sound is ideal for vinyl. Spin this platter on a clear autumn day and it’ll be easy to pretend you’re in a Richard Linklater movie, grooving to chunky guitar riffs, driving a late model muscle car, and rocking some seriously feathered hair.