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The best new rock albums you can buy this week

Marillion, Chris Robinson Brotherhood and The Tangent are among the best new rock album releases you can check out this week


Marillion - Misplaced Childhood (Deluxe Edition)

"Mid-80s Marillion: a religion to fans, a punchline to others. They were deemed so unfashionable in the era of The Smiths, the Mary Chain and The Cure that those who’d seen the light were only galvanized by the opprobrium. To hear Misplaced Childhood – the band’s masterpiece and biggest seller – now, out of context, liberated from playground peer pressure, is to recognise a truly great concept album. It’s one that believes 41 minutes of rock music can – like a film or book – aim for the stars and present a story full of emotion, poetry and, above all, drama. It’s way stronger than more revered milestones like, say, Quadrophenia (which it references with a cheeky ‘rain on me’), where for your handful of peak moments you have to wade through loads of undisciplined musical waffle. And the misconception that prog is all about indulgent jamming and noodling? There’s zero fat here. Everything lasts exactly as long as feels right."

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Chris Robinson Brotherhood - Barefoot In The Head

"Predictability may not be the most rock’n’roll starting point in the world, but in the case of Barefoot In The Head, having a good inkling of what it’s all about before hitting ‘play’ is as comforting as the music held within. Rather than straying too far from the path, Robinson returns with his usual stew of blues, country, warm psychedelia and rock’n’roll. But within that template, they’ve left a trail of surprises to uncover, and the band have built themselves a playground and given themselves the time and space to thoroughly explore every corner."

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Cock Sparrer - Forever

"Cock Sparrer’s career predates punk. They’re just as much pioneers as the Hollywood Brats or Eddie And The Hot Rods, but whenever those BBC4 documentaries get made, or the mainstream rock media celebrate punk’s birth, they’re never there. And it’s a ridiculous omission. Though their brutal combination of wall-of-guitar thrash precision, hook-heavy, testosterone terrace chants and full-tilt, heartstring-tugging, East End, everyman, pub kitchen-sink dramas can be every bit as affecting as the best of Townshend, their faces never seemed to fit."

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The Tangent - The Slow Rust Of Forgotten Machinery

"The Tangent’s ninth sees Andy Tillison driving five lengthy, labyrinthine pieces with help from prog staples like Luke Machin, Jonas Reingold and Theo Travis. Its intricacies never bore: like Caravan or Robert Wyatt, it knows musicianship should never stifle mood."

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Samson - Joint Forces: 1986 -1993

"When guitarist Paul Samson died on August 9, 2002, he left a complicated back catalogue. This two-CD set brings together three albums from a particularly muddled period (following three albums with Bruce Dickinson and two featuring Nicky Moore) of solo work and stylistic switches. The first, and best, is 1986’s Joint Forces, here as remixed by Paul in 1993. Initially intended as a solo album, it was released under the Samson banner because it once again featured the stunning blues tones of Moore and, despite its conception, sounded like a continuation of Samson’s most commercially successful era."

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