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Top Pop Culture Picks for the Week

TOP PICK

KISS

Monster

(Universal)

The heavy metal veterans sound surprisingly inspired on this, their first studio album in three years. Guitarist Paul Stanley’s voice is a little more weathered and worn than normal, but the band sounds energized on songs such as “Hell or Hallelujah” and the grunge-y “Back to the Stone,” both of which rely upon big, bold bluesy guitar riffs.

VIDEO

Beatles

Magical Mystery Tour

(EMI)

Essentially a long-form music video, this Beatles film was essentially out-of-print prior to this reissue on DVD and Blu-Ray that comes complete with commentary from Beatle Paul McCartney, and deleted scenes (including one featuring the band Traffic performing “Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush” in a giant field). As long as you don’t take it too seriously, the film has camp value and comes off as quite a goof despite its reputation as a big waste of time.

MUSIC

Danko Jones

Rock n Roll is Black n Blue

(Bad Taste)

This Canadian hard rock band sounds more like Soundgarden than Soundgarden does these days. This hard-hitting album swings with real swagger and in songs like "I Don't Care" and "The Masochist," the guys unabashedly embrace reckless behavior. Nice!

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