October 03, 1988 12:00 PM

>THE SHOUTING STAGE Ever since Tracy Chapman showed up, people have been comparing her with Joan Armatrading. Here’s an impressive bit of work by Ms. A. herself. (A&M)

LET IT ROLL Even without the late Lowell George, Little Feat can put together some gritty, rambunctious pop rock. (Warner Bros.)

VIRGIN BEAUTY It sounds like a match made in a food processor: Ornette Coleman and his band Prime Time teaming with Jerry Garcia. The exotic results are a tasty, if unpredictable, kind of jazz. (Portrait/CBS)

NEW WORLD Karla Bonoff has written hits for such people as Linda Ronstadt and Bonnie Raitt; in this case she does herself and her listeners a few favors. (Gold Castle)

OLD 8 X 10 That mellow young country gentleman Randy Travis delivers another nearly picture-perfect album. (Warner Bros.)

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