December 6th is pretty much the last big release date of the year (unless the T-Pain album floats your boat, in which case get thee to Auto-Tune detox immediately), so happily there’s a reasonable amount of fairly worthy pre-release streams floating about on the Internet. As ever, we’ve started our working week by collating five of the best and/or most noteworthy for you, and they await you after the jump — along with new albums by The Black Keys and The Roots, there’s the ever-prolific Boris’s third album of the year, a live album by The Dropkick Murphys, and also (gulp) Korn’s new dubstep direction. Yikes.
The Black Keys — El Camino
Fresh from proclaiming themselves to the Guardian to be the hardest-working band in show business, The Black Keys are streaming their new album El Camino this week. It’s available in various places, provided that you surrender your email address to the band’s marketing robots — try here, for instance. (Or, you can just click here and circumvent all such unpleasantness, although we’re not entirely certain that the stream is 100 percent legit.)
The Roots — undun
As we discussed last week, the new Roots album is a grandiose conceptual piece that features a guest appearance from grandiose, conceptually-inclined type Sufjan Stevens, was inspired by Stevens’ song “Redford,” and follows the life and times of a character called Redford Stephens (see the connection here?) over the course of 14 songs. It’s an interesting piece of work from one of hip hop’s more cerebral acts, and it’s streaming at NPR all week — click here to listen.
Boris — New Album
The third Boris release of 2011 sits somewhere between the extremities of its two predecessors — not quite as poptastic as Attention Please, and certainly nowhere near as raucous as Heavy Rocks. Sadly, a Japanese experimental metal band whose music generally sounds as if it was recorded at the other end of an aircraft hangar are never going to trouble the charts — but if they were, this might just be the record to do it. Listen here.
Dropkick Murphys — Going Out in Style (Live at Fenway Park Edition)
The genre known as “Celtic punk” has, um, selective appeal, but if you want to approximate the experience of a Dropkick Murphys show without the need to actually attend one, then you may be interested in this reissue of the band’s most recent album Going Out in Style, which now comes with a bonus live disc. Just close your eyes, imagine you’re in a sweaty pub, click here to start the music, and then pour a green beer over your head — it’ll be just like being there!
Korn — The Path of Totality
And finally, if you’re keen to hear Korn’s new dubstep direction, look no further. We’d be fascinated to know what people make of it.