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Picks and Pans Main: Music

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The Twilight Saga: Eclipse

Original Motion Picture Soundtrack |


A new Twilight soundtrack is greeted with as much drooling anticipation as the prospect of seeing Taylor Lautner’s abs. After the platinum-plus success of the first two CDs, the companion to Eclipse (which hits theaters June 30) does not disappoint. It’s another who’s who of cool, with alternative acts like Vampire Weekend, the Dead Weather and Gnarls Barkley’s Cee-Lo Green snagging coveted spots. Muse, featured on both previous Twilight discs, returns with the galactic first single, “Neutron Star Collision (Love Is Forever),” while Beck finds his own Bella in Bat for Lashes on the trippy “Let’s Get Lost.” Two other ladies provide highlights: Sia on the romantic “My Love” and Florence + the Machine on the haunting “Heavy in Your Arms.”

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers

Mojo |



Few bands have sounded happier about getting the blues than Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, reunited for their first CD together since 2002’s The Last DJ (following Petty’s 2006 solo outing, Highway Companion). You can practically imagine these old-timers doing a jig on cuts like the frisky “Let Yourself Go” and the strutting “Running Man’s Bible.” There is a loose, live vibe to it all that makes you feel like you just stumbled into some juke joint. They also veer toward country (“No Reason to Cry”) and reggae (“Don’t Pull Me Over”) without missing a beat.

DOWNLOAD THIS: “First Flash of Freedom,” a psychedelic ballad

Sarah McLachlan

Laws of Illusion |


Just as Lilith Fair returns this summer, the tour’s founder Sarah McLachlan reemerges with her first album of new material since 2003. And while nothing much has changed in seven years-or, for that matter, 13 years, if you go back to her 1997 smash Surfacing-her female flock won’t care: They’ve got their goddess back. Reclining on a crescent moon on the CD cover, McLachlan is still an ethereal presence who casts a soft, warm glow on these tunes, from the atmospheric opener “Awakenings” to the irresistibly breezy single “Loving You Is Easy.”

DOWNLOAD THIS: “Forgiveness,” a bittersweet breakup ballad