The days are shorter and the nights colder, but wait, the music biz is ready with a barrage of event albums to revive your spirits! We're here to separate the warm from the lukewarm, the trash from the treasure.

1. There's a Chill in the Air


All the leaves are brown, and Kanye’s still cray. I’ve been for a walk, and bought an app from Green Day. I’d be smokin’ shawarma, or whatever-the-fuck Dylan say. Big-ticket album dreamin’ on such an autumn's day. So, the summer has been put back into its bottle of self-tanning cream and the days are getting shorter and the nights colder and the school year is starting to grind away at your soul, but wait, the music industry is ready with a barrage of event albums to revive your spirits! And we’re here to separate the warm from the lukewarm, the trash from the treasure. Not all of the most-hyped fall albums are included in this list, so be warned. We passed on Muse this time (mostly because Matt Bellamy’s conspiracy theory-inspired, dubstep-baubled, sentiment-stained stadium-rawk blitzkrieg is starting to scare us more than Mitt Romney). And if you wanna curl up by your wood-burning stove with Mumford & Sons and the Avett Brothers, feel free; we’ll catch you later at the vintage barber shop and compare leather sharpening strops. Anyway, moving on feeling strong. Here’s the finest of the fall collection. CHARLES AARON

2. There's a Chill in the Air


All the leaves are brown, and Kanye’s still cray. I’ve been for a walk, and bought an app from Green Day. I’d be smokin’ shawarma, or whatever-the-fuck Dylan say. Big-ticket album dreamin’ on such an autumn's day. So, the summer has been put back into its bottle of self-tanning cream and the days are getting shorter and the nights colder and the school year is starting to grind away at your soul, but wait, the music industry is ready with a barrage of event albums to revive your spirits! And we’re here to separate the warm from the lukewarm, the trash from the treasure. Not all of the most-hyped fall albums are included in this list, so be warned. We passed on Muse this time (mostly because Matt Bellamy’s conspiracy theory-inspired, dubstep-baubled, sentiment-stained stadium-rawk blitzkrieg is starting to scare us more than Mitt Romney). And if you wanna curl up by your wood-burning stove with Mumford & Sons and the Avett Brothers, feel free; we’ll catch you later at the vintage barber shop and compare leather sharpening strops. Anyway, moving on feeling strong. Here’s the finest of the fall collection. CHARLES AARON

3. Grizzly Bear


Shields (Warp)
Release date: Sept. 18
The Skinny: Reverb, harmonies, more reverb, more harmonies — Grizzly Bear's preferred songmaking framework has created arresting moments of fastidious rock rapture since the Brooklyn band's 2006 breakthrough with Yellow House and the widespread popularity of 2009's Veckatimest (which earned them a new fan in Jay-Z). But in his SPIN review of the album, Andy Beta notes that Grizzly Bear have "eschewed the fussy arrangements" of the past, and that throughout Shields (partially conceived in studios in Cape Cod, Massachusetts and Marfa, Texas), they "sully and scuff up their meticulous sound just enough, like choirboys taking up smoking behind the church."
Worth noting: Lest they be mistaken for self-serious artisans, Grizzly Bear joined comic satirist Stephen Colbert for his rock festival StePhest Colbchella '012, on board the Manhattan-docked aircraft carrier U.S.S. Intrepid. Andy Battaglia

4. G.O.O.D. Music


Cruel Summer (G.O.O.D/Def Jam)
Release date: Sept. 18
The Skinny: Kanye West's attempt at a standard crew album, released in the summer, to prime the pump for whatever Citizen Kanye solo franchise of transcendent, narcissistic lunacy everybody's really waiting for, was, of course, never gonna happen anyway. First, the album (title be damned!) was pushed a season, songs were leaked and retitled, and one of the best of the leaked tracks, "New God Flow," which featured a Ghostface Killah sample, was recut with a new Ghostface verse (now a refreshing highlight). True to form, Kanye couldn't just play the unseen hand guiding the proceedings (aided by minions including Illmind, Boogz & Tapez, Dan Black, et al.), he had to storm the studio — loudly proclaiming himself the "God of rap." Hopefully not lost in the bluster: a sharp, jittery confessional from Kid Cudi ("Creepers") and Hit-Boy's eerily swooping production on "Clique," which features a Big Sean verse that actually grows on you.
Worth noting: SPIN's Christopher R. Weingarten put it best: "Yeah, [Kanye will] posse up if that's our economic reality…but unlike hip-hop's smarter, savvier historical entrepreneurs (Marley Marl, Birdman, Eminem, Lil Wayne, Jay-Z), he will never let anyone in his crew truly outshine him." C.A.

5. Dinosaur Jr.


I Bet on Sky (Merge)
Release date: Sept. 18
The Skinny: J Mascis is a legendarily distinctive shredder and boasts a bray that counts as one of the most affective voices in rock, but maybe the coolest feature of his arsenal of talents is an ear for hooks that prove inescapably sharp even when smothered with fuzz. It's been the case since Dinosaur Jr. started out in the mid-1980s, and that live-wire charge has remained surprisingly pliant since the original trio regrouped — Mascis plus drummer Murph and bassist Lou Barlow — back in 2005. I Bet on Sky is their third album since then, and the opening track, "Don't Pretend You Didn't Know," oozes glorious melody, from the lightly flecked grunge rhythm guitar to Mascis' sweetly mumbled vox to the plaintive piano to the remarkably restrained yet searing solo.
Worth noting: The cover of I Bet on Sky was drawn by celebrated comic artist Travis Millard.A.B.

6. The Killers


Battle Born (Island/Vertigo)
Release date: Sept. 18
The Skinny: The band's fourth studio album derives its title from a nickname for the Killers' home state of Nevada, which joined the union during the battle-torn Civil War; and it perfectly suits the band's tortured regional pride (how does one look fondly on Las Vegas' industry of soul-annihilation?) and their music's sense of epic struggle (trying to find redemption outside Sin City's scorched earth). After cutting short their tour behind 2008's Day & Age when singer Brandon Flowers' mother passed away, they went on hiatus, recorded side projects, and returned with a renewed sense of purpose, working with a series of highly decorated producers, including Daniel Lanois, Steve Lillywhite, and Brendan O'Brien. "Runaways," the first single, unloads one cymbal crash after another of mythic, synth-rock Americana, chugging to a chorus worth of Jim Steinman.
Worth noting: Brandon Flowers, an avowed Mormon, met not long ago with Republic presidential candidate Mitt Romney over lunch at Caesars Palace on the Vegas strip. A.B.

7. Band of Horses


Mirage Rock (Brown/Columbia)
Release date: Sept. 18
The Skinny: You'd never expect a record titled Mirage Rock to be bristly or brash, and this Seattle-born, South Carolina-based quintet still sound gentle and approachable on their fourth album. Having helped establish the scruffy, sun-kissed, kinda-folk, sorta-rock sound that became such an indie template during the past five years, Band of Horses went to L.A. in an attempt to "loosen up" after 2010's more subdued, pop-oriented Infinite Arms, teaming with storied producer Glyn Jones (the Who, Rolling Stones). The results toggle between (relatively) hard-bitten rock and lightly brushed country-folk that could've been recorded decades ago.
Worth noting: Beardo-rock fans might be upset to learn that bassist Bill Reynolds shaved off his facial fur for the summer, though he promised a concerned New Zealand journalist that the group's whiskers will be back "in good shape" in due time .A.B.

8. Thee Oh Sees


Putrifiers II (In the Red)
Release date: Sept. 18
The Skinny: Virtually any song from Putrifiers II could make any location — a jewelry store, a sports-bar patio, an open-air festival stage — feel like the kind of exotically decrepit and cool "garage rock" garage that probably never existed. Thee Oh Sees' sound timelessly invokes '60s/'70s jukebox rarities but never sounds studious or belabored. With a slew of records in their wake from just the past few year, this Bay Area troupe oozes songs that range from full-tilt rockers to hypnotically grotty psych jams, all marshaled by wildly prolific frontoman John Dwyer (formerly of Coachwhips and Pink and Brown).
Worth noting: Those who are obsessively looking for a predecessor to this seeming sequel, will be frustrated, as a first Putrifiers does not exist. A.B.

9. Woods


Bend Beyond (Woodsist)
Release date: Sept. 18
The Skinny: From a distance, Woods sounds like a bright, buoyantly jangling folk-rock band, but there's a lot of weirdness beneath the shimmer. "Cali in a Cup," the first single off their seventh album, is a strummy, chilled-out acoustic-guitar ode with comely falsetto vocals and wispy harmonies; but then a subtle, woozy sense of psychedelic disequilibrium begins to set in. That wooziness is more pronounced on the electrified second single, "Size Meets the Sound" (perhaps the band's most forceful rocker to date), but part of Woods' shambling allure lies in how you're never exactly sure whether such moments signal the start of something more intense.
Worth noting: Per usual, Woods' new album will be released on the band's own label Woodsist, a prolific, upstate New York-based imprint, responsible for a cool yearly festival situated in the California coastal region of Big Sur, California (the last one, in August, included Thee Oh Sees, Sun Araw, Peaking Lights, Real Estate, and more). A.B.

Check out SPIN's full stream of Bend Beyond

10. Green Day


¡Uno! (Reprise)
Release date: Sept. 25
The Skinny: As copy editors scramble to learn how to make those upside-down exclamation points that look so cool in Spanish, Green Day gear up to rock ferociously in support of three albums due in the next few months (¡Dos! comes out Nov. 13 and ¡Tré! is due Jan. 15, 2013). The trio are no strangers to ambition — as evidenced by 2004's "punk rock epic" concept album American Idiot and its Tony Award-winning musical counterpart — but this trilogy actually reduces the stakes. Billie Joe Armstrong has name-checked Cheap Trick as a benchmark for the group's tighter, power-poppier sound, and the songs return to intensely yelped songs about girls rather than politically bullish magnum opuses.
Worth noting: The three new albums were all recorded with longtime, simpatico producer Rob Cavallo, who also moonlights these days as chairman of Warner Bros. Records. A.B.

11. No Doubt


Push and Shove (Interscope)

Release date: Sept. 25
The Skinny: The most unlikely alterna-survivors and pop crafties of the '90s spent four years diligently piecing together their first album since 2001 (and frontwoman Gwen Stefani's first recorded output since 2006 solo album The Sweet Escape). Though initial single "Settle Down" never caught on as a summer anthem — despite its immaculate swirl of strings, dancehall-for-kiddies bloop and sway, refreshing bursts of alt-guitar crunch, Stefani's ever-charming, fake-patois coo, and enough hooks to impress Dr. Luke — and inexplicable second single "Push and Shove" was a cumbersome, Major Lazer-assisted trainwreck, the album is generally a goofy, freewheelin', EDM-sprinkled pleasure. Tip: Skip power ballad "Undone," which sounds like a Carrie Underwood lung-buster that misplaced its bridge and chorus.
Worth noting: Technically, Stefani's last appearance on record was her uncredited backup vocals on husband Gavin Rossdale's ill-fated 2008 croonfest WANDERlust. C.A.

12. Miguel


Kaleidoscope Dream (RCA)
Release date: Oct. 2
Elusive R&B auteur Miguel Pimentel has already released an album's worth of 2012's most immersive, transporting music (his three Art Dealer Chic EPs) and one of the year's most irresistible singles, "Adorn." The Los Angeles singer-songwriter's second official full-length collects two more EPs (Kaleidoscope Dream: Water Preview, which featured an extended version of "Adorn," and Kaleidoscope Dream: Air Preview), plus five additional songs, and stretches even more — most notably, in his own earnest tweaking of '70s-ish pop-rock. Though he certainly belongs in the innovative, new-school R&B vanguard along with Frank Ocean and the Weeknd (even crooning "I'm gonna do you like drugs tonight" at one point), Miguel seems even more adventurous, willing to let tracks wander down all sorts of unexpected, yet always slickly seductive, paths. Then he'll drop an anthemic, "Sign 'O' the Times"-like cry in the wilderness ("Candles in the Sun"). Dude is not playing.
Worth noting: When once asked to name one song that described him, Miguel told Paper magazine: "‘Good Thoughts, Bad Thoughts' by Funkadelic…I really wanna get the entire lyrics tattooed on myself. One of the lyrics is "free your mind and your ass will follow." It's so simple, but it's so true." C.A.

13. Flying Lotus


Until the Quiet Comes (Warp)
Release date: Oct. 2
The Skinny: Abstracting and refracting beats and atmospherics at a rapid pace, Los Angeles' Steven "Flying Lotus" Ellison broke out a few years ago as a beatmaking curiousity with a great aunt named Alice Coltrane (former wife of John and maker of wild, expansive jazz records of her own). From there, it's been all ascension — 2010's Cosmogramma garnered high-profile raves from critics and peers, while Ellison earned a rep for tearing-it-up live in the clubby spirit of his groundbreaking L.A. dubstep/bass-music/et al. party Low End Theory. For "See Thru to You," Until the Quiet Comes' first single, Flying Lotus gets a vocal assist from wispy-minimal R&B badass Erykah Badu.
Worth noting: Radiohead's Thom Yorke guests on the Quiet track "Electric Candyman," furthering a bond between the two artists, which has led Yorke to DJ at Low End Theory events. A.B.

14. Tame Impala


Lonerism (Modular)
Release date: Oct. 9
The Skinny: Anyone who has seen Tame Impala play live during the past year knows that the youthful Australian quartet are no longer introverted noodlers who gradually concoct a psych-rock fantasia that teases you into thinking the colors are about to explode — though they never do. At recent gigs, scuffly, unassuming mastermind Kevin Parker has fully taken over as lead astronaut, confidently traversing more weightless realms, and for second album Lonerism, he recorded all the songs by himself, then brought on space-rock guru Dave Fridmann to mix (just as he did for 2010 debut Innerspeaker). With stickier melodies, a more evolved effects-pedal game, and elaborately layered instrumentation, Parker is becoming a pied-piper of rock's next freak-out generation.
Worth noting: According to Parker, Lonerism had some odd inspirations & #8212; prog-pop titans Supertramp and Todd Rundgren. In fact, Rundgren remixed first single "Elephant," while Tame Impala have performed a live version of "International Feel," the opening track on Rundgren's 1973 album A Wizard, A True Star. C.A.

15. Trash Talk


<119 (Odd Future)
Release date: Oct. 9
The Skinny: The Skinny: After a mere 97 seconds, the new single by this Sacramento, California hardcore-punk crew, "F.E.B.N." (which stands for "Forward Ever Backward Never") is over, but the range of rage seems almost heroic, transmitted with both a deliberate focus and rapid-fire roar. The rest of the album is heavy and full of flesh, slurry and sludgy and frantic, evoking a mosh pit teetering on the edge of chaos. The video for "F.E.B.N." was directed by Tyler, the Creator, and 119 will be released on Odd Future's new label imprint, distributed through Sony BMG RED.
Worth noting: Tyler, the Creator has joined Trash Talk onstage for their cover of his song "Radicals." A.B.

16. Ty Segall


Twins (Drag City)
Release date: Oct. 9
The Skinny: With Twins, Ty Segall has released three albums in 2012, which is not much of a surprise considering his historical output, but the manic Bay Area garage-rocker has elevated to an even higher level of variety and quality. One of his previous offerings this year, Slaughterhouse (by the Ty Segall Band), hit hard and heavy in a sludgy, Stooges-y way. But "The Hill," the first single from Twins (which features face-sliding psychedelic cover art), plays as comparatively lighter and, with a bright, hooky melody hard at work beneath comely layers of fuzz.
Worth noting: Normally, label press releases suck the life out of an album, but here's an exception: "Ty Segall is a new man, a different kind of man from his knuck-draggin' earlier incarnations. It's like the 2001: A Space Odyssey-monolith came to visit him (on the set) one bright morning. And now he's jetting toward Jupiter, brooding, looking at man with x-ray eyes, yearning with a superhuman heart for a love to come and stay." A.B.

17. Benjamin Gibbard


Former Lives (Barsuk)
Release date: Oct. 16
The Skinny: He seemed to have it all: as adorkable a wife as any wife ever (Zooey Deschanel), a commercially successful band of tasteful gents (Death Cab for Cutie) who, at the very least, most folks respected. Well, Benjamin (not "Ben"!) Gibbard actually still has all that (minus the wife after a divorce late last year), so here he steps out on his own for a solo album of tuneful, regretful pop-rock spurred by his move from Seattle to Los Angeles. Says Gibbard, while also stressing that Death Cab is far from finished: "These songs span eight years, three relationships, living in two different places, drinking, then not drinking. They're a side story, not a new chapter."
Worth noting:Gibbard also recently wrote a tribute song, "Ichiro's Theme," for the Seattle Mariners' perennial all-star outfielder Ichiro Suzuki, who was traded to the New York Yankees in late July after 12 years with the Mariners. A.B.

18. Daphni


Jiaolong (Merge)
Release date: Oct. 16
The Skinny: Daphni is the dance-y alter-ego of Dan Snaith from Caribou, which itself has gotten pretty dance-y as it's evolved from a post-rock project to something more clubby, dubby, and rhythmically charged. After pricking lots of ears last year with "Ye Ye," a single put out by Four Tet's label Text, Daphni is back with Jiaolong, an album full of artful, simmering grooves which take their time to unfurl. Like Four Tet, Daphni favors layering and steady builds, making for an organic, hand-forged kind of house music that feels lived-in and mussed-up beneath all the functional four-four patterns. African vocal samples, modular-synth burbles, drums that sound like they're on fire — these are among some of the many intriguing elements that make up Daphni tracks.
Worth noting: Caribou continues to birth significant music in other guises, including the intriguing October release by Sinkane, a project of former Caribou percussionist Ahmad Gallab, who recently signed with dance-rock label DFA. A.B.

19. Jamey Johnson


Living for a Song: A Tribute to Hank Cochran (Mercury Nashville)
Release date: Oct. 16
The Skinny: With a spot on the Railroad Revival Tour alongside Band of Horses and a certain untouchable outlaw dude named Willie Nelson, Jamey Johnson continues to push his music beyond the confines of mainstream country. Not too far, though, as his new album is a serious study of country's past: Living for a Song: A Tribute to Hank Cochran celebrates a storied songwriter who died in 2010 at the age of 74, with a long list of classics to his name (he cowrote "I Fall to Pieces," made achingly famous by Patsy Cline, and a wealth of others recorded by the likes of George Jones, George Strait, Elvis Presley, and Eddy Arnold). A hustling songwriter himself before making it as an artist, Johnson spared no effort in assembling a luxe list of collaborators, including Merle Haggard, Alison Krauss, Emmylou Harris, and Elvis Costello.
Worth noting: More than a distanced tribute, Living for a Song grew out of a friendship between Johnson and Cochran that started shortly after latter was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. As Cochran's widow Suzi explains, "For the two years he lived after [the diagnosis], Jamey would get off the road and pull his bus right up to the hospital, run up and see Hank and raise Hank's spirits. The last time Jamey saw Hank was the night before Hank died." A.B.

20. Boys Noize


Out of the Black (Boysnoize)
Release date:Oct. 16
The Skinny: For a guy who's remixed the Black Eyed Peas' "Boom Boom Pow" and has been lumped in with two of the most-derided pop movements of the past decade — mid-2000s "nu rave" and current-day festival EDM — German electronic producer Alex "Boys Noize" Ridha has never become an auto-pilot cheeseball like so many of his peers. Maintaining the restless spirit of old-school house and acid in his broody, shifty electro-techno bangers and remixes, he deserves as much of a headliner profile as he wants at this point. Ridha's third album is both restrained and headstrong, delivering a taut, minimal throb of gleefully nasty melodic flourishes and cagey serotonin builds ("XTC," "What You Want"). Plus, a Snoop Dogg track for your trouble ("Got It").
Worth Noting: Boys Noize is also working on a new collaboration with Skrillex called Dog Blood. C.A.

21. Kendrick Lamar


good kid, m.A.A.d. city (Aftermath/Interscope)
Release date: Oct. 22
The Skinny: The artwork for Kendrick Lamar's major-label debut screams "L.A. hip-hop" of a timeless vintage, with a pair of crumpled-up Polaroids showing an old family scene with a 40 sitting on a table and a minivan rolling down a street whose pavement is cracked from baking in the punishing sun. It also signals an album of a highly personal sort, and Lamar (a thoughtful, verbally dexterous member of the Black Hippy collective) has elevated expectations with the dazzling, cutting, intensely composed album tracks that have so far emerged: "Swimming Pools (Drank)" is a masterful, multi-leveled plunge into alcohol's disorienting appeal; and "Cartoon & Cereal," featuring Gunplay and almost-playful, creepy-crawl production by THC, suggests a scenario of child-like loneliness edging into violent fantasy and an ongoing, wide-awake bad trip. "The Recipe," with
"executive producer" Dr. Dre chiming in over a hard-bumpin' groove, doesn't do much to disprove the idea that Dre is just as concerned with maintaining his rep as supporting young talent.
Worth noting: Lamar is also working on a collaborative mixtape with J. Cole. A.B.

22. Bat for Lashes


The Haunted Man (Parlophone)
Release date: Oct. 23
The Skinny: It would be a callous soul who could listen Bat for Lashes' pleading single "Laura" and not come out of it the least bit unsettled. Natasha Khan's voice is deep and eerily resonant, whether contained in low whispers or launching off into upper-register extremes; the sparse piano-based track beneath her says all it needs to say by not saying much at all. Another recently-released song, "Marilyn," also focuses on a single character — Marilyn Monroe — who represents overwhelming, almost mystical emotion; but instead of holding back, the musical backdrop builds into a baroquely chiming, '80s synth-pop cathedral where Khan's voice seems to echo into eternity. These are the kinds of haunting, mindful moments (like 2009's "Daniel") that have placed Khan alongside the likes of Björk, Florence Welch, Zola Jesus, and others who can turn art songs into transmissions from a world deeper and infinitely more dramatic than the one wandered by the rest of us.
Worth noting: Natasha Khan has attributed some of her early creative spark to hearing the crowd's applause at professional squash matches featuring her father, a Pakistani who moved to London and married an Englishwoman, and who went on to coach her mother's cousin, Jahangir Khan, considered by many to be greatest squash player in the history of the game. A.B.

23. Titus Andronicus


Local Business (XL)
Release date: Oct. 23
The Skinny: From the band's own website: "Titus Andronicus the studious recording project and Titus Andronicus the raucous touring machine are no longer two distinct beings; there is only Titus Andronicus, rock and roll band." Whether this is an allusion to the departure of bassist Ian Graetzer and guitarist Amy Klein or not, it's encouraging news for people who like their rock rubbed raw and their punk ragingly thoughtful — defining aspects of the New Jersey-bred band from the start. Titus' heady, wordy songs, spit by frontman Patrick Stickles, are still narratively focused on their third album (and follow-up to 2010's The Monitor, but less conceptual and more "of the earth."

Worth noting: In case their literary bent was not obvious, the name Titus Andronicus traces back to a 16th-century play thought to be William Shakespeare's first tragedy. A.B.

24. The Coup


Sorry to Bother You (Anti-)
Release date: Oct. 30
The Skinny: With so much socio-political upheaval and change in recent years, it's a wonder that the Coup haven't released a new album since 2006. But Sorry to Bother You quickly rectifies that situation, which is a hip-hop broadside at its core, but also integrates aggro punk guitar and danceable, '80-influenced beats. Boots Riley, leader of the Oakland-based group, has been an outspoken figurehead of Occupy Wall Street's West Coast contingent, but he'd made his name before any of that fuss, pointedly and wittily chronicling abuses of power. Sorry to Bother You includes an array of guest musicians, including Living Colour's Vernon Reid, Das Racist, Anti-Flag, Killer Mike, and Jolie Holland, among others.
Worth noting: To get a sense of what Boots Riley can communicate in a song, look no further than "You Are Not a Riot (an RSVP from David Siquieros to Andy Warhol)," described as the imagining of "a contentious meeting" between Warhol and radical Mexican muralist Siqueiros, "the scene accompanied by a frenetic burst of futuristic new wave." A.B.

25. Neil Young


Psychedelic Pill (Reprise)
Release date: Oct. 30
The Skinny: About a year ago, Neil Young and his legendarily untamed noise-fuzz backing band Crazy Horse gathered near his San Francisco home to record a set of liberally reworked folk standards (released in June as Americana). Then the real shit popped off. And now we have a startling new double album, titled Psychedelic Pill, with Crazy Horse uncoiling some of their most nuanced and wild-ass jams in 40-plus years of collaboration. Key tracks include the whistling feedback odyssey and environmental lament "Walk Like a Giant," the clanging "good time" sneer of the title track, the tenderly corrosive, almost 17-minute "Ramada Inn," and the gimlet-eyed, country-ish jaunt "Born in Ontario."
Worth noting: Of "Walk Like a Giant," Crazy Horse guitarist Frank "Poncho" Sampedro told Rolling Stone: "I imagine it's about Earth being destroyed by this giant, and we're screening the planet for survivors and shit. I have all these images going through my head. It's really crazy." C.A.

26. Big Boi


Vicious Lies and Dangerous Rumors (Def Jam)
Release date: Nov. 13
The Skinny: Since OutKast spun off into another orbit, Big Boi has been exploring all sorts of new musical galaxies (in addition to tweeting like an ADHD teenager). And for his ominously titled follow-up to 2010's solo debut, Sir Lucious Left Foot: The Son of Chico Dusty, he spent time in the studio with Modest Mouse's Isaac Brock, A$AP Rocky, Kid Cudi, U.G.K. and Big K.R.I.T. (the up-tempo gabfest "Gossip"), Little Dragon (bubbly pop-funk track "Mama Told Me") and perhaps most prominently, Sarah Barthel of indie synth-rock duo Phantogram. Of course, not all of the above may appear on the finished version of Vicious Lies, since Big Boi is notorious for tinkering with track lists and release dates.
Worth noting: In mid-August, Big Boi tweeted that he'd been talking with Kate Bush about a possible collaboration. A.B.

27. Soundgarden


King Animal (Universal Republic)
Release date: Nov. 13
The Skinny: In 2010, the members of Soundgarden got onstage for the first time in 13 years at Seattle's Showbox, later headlined Lollapalooza, and unveiled an outtake, "Black Rain," from 1991's Badmotorfinger sessions. In a rather solemn SPIN cover story around that time, the group claimed not to have written any new material. But now here's the first all-new Soundgarden album in 16 years, and judging by first single "Been Away Too Long" and assorted other impressive tracks ("Worse Dreams," "Blood on the Valley Floor," "Halfway There"), King Animal should once again summon the pastoral melancholy and foreboding churn that defined the band's '90s heyday. Graybeard guitarist Kim Thayil is still a looming threat, trust us.
Worth noting: In a brutally frank interview for that 2010 story, Cornell told SPIN: "After enough years of getting fucked up, I got to the point where physically and mentally I was in danger. The idea that I'm not the same person — well, I hope not, because that's sort of the point." C.A.