Four New Music Releases in Five Words or Less

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The record industry seems to still be hungover from last week’s album buzz — that, or they’ve all taken an early vacation. There aren’t many exciting albums coming out today, since it seems like Britney’s Circus has been out forever and the two albums getting the most praise feature decades-old material.

For your convenience, we’ve read reviews from all over and oversimplified the critics’ reactions to this week’s top four releases:

Britney Spears, Circus: Self-aware; vocals still lacking.

Neil Young, Sugar Mountain: Live at Canterbury House 1968 : Artist as genius young lyricist.

Akon, Freedom: Hopeless romantic makes sappy R&B.

Various Artists, The Best of Chess Records: Skip movie; love the originals.

We were amazed at how intent music critics seemed to be on analyzing the lyrics in Circus — this is Britney we’re talking about, not Aimee Mann. Regardless, we guess she should count it as an accomplishment of how far she’s come that we finally care about what she’s trying to tell us. If the critics are right, the Neil Young and Chess Records releases are quite worth it — some of the best reviews we read can be found after the jump.

Britney: [RS] [Entertainment Weekly] [New York Times] [Idolator]

Akon [Times] [New York Times– second one] [RS]

Neil Young [Express Night Out] [The Guardian] [Rolling Stone]

Chess Records [Billboard] [EW]