The best new music of the week: Selena Gomez, Chris Hadfield and more

By Nicholas Jennings

As music columnist for, each week I’ll bring you my selections for the best and most notable new music, albums you’re going to want to add to your collection plus a five-song playlist to try out. Happy listening!

Scroll down for playlist…


Selena GomezRevival
“I’m not 16 anymore,” says Selena, eager to prove that she’s shed her Disney star persona. The singer-actress, now 23, makes the point more emphatically on her sophomore album, offering grown-up songs like “Confident” and “Lionheart,” which express just how much she now feels in control of her life. While there is one obvious club banger in “Stars” and two dance remixes of “Good For You,” the other dozen tracks are slow ballads and mid-tempo burners such as the smoldering “Wildfire” and the tough “Kingdom Come,” featuring Iggy Azalea.

Chris HadfieldSpace Sessions: Songs from a Tin Can
Astronauts are known for having to multitask, and Canada’s rocket man made use of his time aboard the International Space Station by recording a collection of songs that rank as the world’s first “off planet” album. Along with his viral hit cover of David Bowie’s “Space Oddity” (26-million YouTube views and counting), the now-fully-orchestrated album includes such folky numbers as “Space Lullaby,” which found him seeking connection with his three kids, “Beyond the Terra,” co-written with his son Evan, and the Lightfoot-esque “Daughter of My Sins.”


Edward SharpeLive in No Particular Order 2009-2014
L.A.’s indie folk heroes dig into their live vaults, compiling a collection of classics like “Home,” “Janglin” and “Up from Below” along with such fan favorites as “Truth” and “Bad Bad Love” from singer Alex Ebert’s solo album Alexander.

City and ColourIf I Should Go Before You
After teaming up with Alecia Moore (aka Pink) as You+Me on last year’s excellent Rose Ave., Dallas Green reconvenes his solo project with help from his touring band to create this collection of moody, soulful songs like “Friends” and the heartbreaking title track.

Emily KinneyThis is War
Once fleeing from zombies, the Walking Dead actress now has other bad guys to contend with, singing about rotten lovers on songs like “Mess” and the confessional title track, in which she admits to being “bruised and bloodied” but hell bent on revenge. Read our interview with Emily here!

Joe JacksonFast Forward
The “Angry Young Man” of England’s new wave records a wry, swinging set of original songs in Berlin, Amsterdam, New York and New Orleans, teaming up with stellar musicians like Greg Cohen, Bill Frisell, Brian Blade and members of funksters Galactic.


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