The best new music of the week: Demi Lovato, Bryan Adams 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…


Demi LovatoConfident
What’s wrong with being confident, indeed? The “Cool for the Summer” singer is clearly at the top of her game (Need proof? Watch our exclusive interview here!). Working with A-list hitmakers like Max Martin and Ryan Tedder, she delivers strong jams like the bold “Lionheart,” the soaring “For You” and the assertive “Waitin’ for You,” on which she assures us that she won’t back down.

The DecemberistsFlorasongs
Colin Meloy, the Portland indie folk-rockers’ bookish frontman, is certainly prolific. Along with young fantasy novels, Meloy writes all of his band’s historically focussed songs, including the 14 on this year’s What a Terrible World, What a Beautiful World album. This EP contains another five, including the gorgeous, R.E.M.-like “The Harrowed and the Haunted” and “Fits & Starts,” a driving rocker set in Communist Russia.

Bryan AdamsGet Up!
He turns 56 next month, but the Canadian rock superstar displays a mighty youthful vigor on his 13th studio album. The two opening tracks, the rockabilly-like “You Belong to Me” and the chugging “Go Down Rockin’,” are some his feistiest numbers in years. Produced by the Beatle-friendly Jeff Lynne, the album also includes a pair of tuneful, McCartney-esque numbers: “We Did It All” and “Don’t Even Try.”


Photo: © Getty Images

There’ll be plenty of drama at this year’s AMAs, airing Nov. 22 on CTV. The just-announced list of nominees includes several tight races and a few that are simply too close to call. The most predictable winners include Taylor Swift for Favorite Female: Pop/Rock, Canada’s The Weeknd for New Artist of the Year and One Direction for Favorite Duo/Group: Pop/Rock. Then it gets a little trickier. Song of the Year will come down to Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars’ “Uptown Funk,” Taylor Swift’s “Blank Space” and The Weeknd’s “Can’t Feel My Face.” Favorite Male Artist: Pop/Rock will be fought between Nick Jonas, Ed Sheeran and Sam Smith. And the overall Artist of the Year prize is packed with nine contenders, including Taylor. If the "Wildest Dreams" songstress takes home all six awards for which she’s nominated, she’ll top Whitney Houston as the winningest female artist in AMA history.


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