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Fall music preview

EW takes a look at new albums from Kanye West, Kid Rock, Kings of Leon, Maroon 5, and more

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Maroon 5
Hands All Over
Single ”Misery” is already a hit, boding well for the band’s collaboration with famed producer Mutt Lange (Def Leppard, Shania Twain). How much will he shake up their sound? We’re looking forward to finding out. (9/21)

Sara Bareilles
Kaleidoscope Heart

The ”Love Song”-stress has teamed up with producer Neal Avron (Fall Out Boy, Weezer).(9/7)

Interpol
Interpol

On their fourth album, the New York band focus on the moody moans and cutting riffs they do best.(9/7)

Jamey Johnson
The Guitar Song

2008’s breakout country traditionalist returns with a twangy double album.(9/14)

Linkin Park
A Thousand Suns

Co-produced by Rick Rubin, Suns leads off with the single ”Catalyst.”(9/14)

Robert Plant
Band of Joy

The Led Zep singer covers Los Lobos and Richard Thompson on this follow-up to his hit collab with Alison Krauss, Raising Sand.(9/14)

Trey Songz
Passion, Pain & Pleasure

On the heels of 2009’s Ready, Songz will deliver more loverboy croons and bad-girl anthems. (9/14)

Mavis Staples
You Are Not Alone

Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy produced this collection by the soul icon, and also penned two songs. (9/14)

Brandon Flowers
Flamingo

The Killers frontman takes a temporary break from his band to release this solo debut, which features a duet with another moonlighting lead singer, Rilo Kiley’s Jenny Lewis. (9/14)

Billy Currington
Enjoy Yourself

He reminded us that beer is good in last year’s country smash ”People Are Crazy.” Now Currington launches his fourth album with ”Pretty Good at Drinkin’ Beer.” (9/21)

Michael Franti & Spearhead
The Sound of Sunshine

Positive vibes are in abundance on the reggae-rap-rock band’s new disc. (9/21)

John Legend & the Roots
Wake Up!

After years of mutual admiration, the singer and the hip-hop band have joined forces for a full album of politically tinged soul covers. Common and CL Smooth help out with guest verses. (9/21)

Santana
Guitar Heaven: The Greatest Guitar Classics of All Time

Vocalists partnering with the six-string maestro on this collection of cover tunes include Chris Cornell (”Whole Lotta Love”) and Rob Thomas (”Sunshine of Your Love”). (9/21)

Zac Brown Band
You Get What You Give

This year’s Best New Artist Grammy winners mix rock, country, and fratty island jams (there’s even a Jimmy Buffett duet). (9/21)

Aloe Blacc
Good Things
Riding ”I Need a Dollar,” Blacc’s sophomore CD is full of retro-soul pleasures. (9/28)

Kenny Chesney
Hemingway’s Whiskey

Chesney returns after a year off the road (and three without a studio CD). (9/28)

Eric Clapton
Clapton

The guitar wizard’s first single, ”Diamonds Made From Rain,” features Sheryl Crow. (9/28)

Jeezy
TM103

For his latest album, the rapper called on premier producers like Kanye West and Swizz Beatz. (9/28)

Shontelle
No Gravity

She recently climbed the charts with powerhouse ballad ”Impossible.” Here the native Barbadian will get studio assists from Bruno Mars, The Dream, Asher Roth, and No Doubt’s Tony Kanal. (9/21)

Mark Ronson
Record Collection

The man behind Amy Winehouse’s ”Rehab” is back with a spacey collage of Motown soul and ’90s hip-hop. (9/28)

David Archuleta
The Other Side of Down

Idol‘s most adorable runner-up has said his second CD is more personal. (10/5)

Toby Keith
Bullet in the Gun

Keith’s new one will also come in a deluxe edition with live tracks. (10/5)

Bruno Mars
Doo-Wops & Hooligans

With a pair of major hits (B.o.B’s ”Nothin’ on You” and Travie McCoy’s ”Billionaire”) to his credit, Mars hopes his solo set will boast the same sort of smash that he’s already given to others. (10/5)

Weezer
Hurley

On their new album, named after the lovable Lost character, Rivers Cuomo & Co. promise a more classic Weezer feel. If single ”Memories” is a sign, they’ve achieved their goal. (9/14)

Kings of Leon
Come Around Sundown

The Followills’ fifth album was produced by Angelo Petraglia and Jacquire King, who helped them achieve platinum sales with 2008’s Only by the Night. (10/19)

KT Tunstall
Tiger Suit

The husky-voiced Scot left her folky roots behind on 2007’s Drastic Fantastic — and this one may be even further out: She’s publicly dubbed it ”nature techno.” (10/5)

Darius Rucker
Charleston, SC 1966

The title of Rucker’s second country disc is his birthplace and year — and also pays homage to one of his musical heroes, Radney Foster, who once released an album called Del Rio, TX 1959. (10/12)

Elton John & Leon Russell
The Union

T Bone Burnett produced this pianoman matchup. (10/19)

Rod Stewart
Fly Me to the Moon

Stewart reteams with producers Richard Perry and Clive Davis for his fifth dip into standards. (10/19)

Kid Cudi
Man on the Moon 2: The Legend of Mr. Rager

The Cleveland native will explore more of his fears and dreams on his psychedelic sophomore CD. (10/26)

Ciara
Basic Instinct

Guests Andre 3000, Ludacris, and The-Dream help the R&B vixen follow her Instincts. (OCT.)

N.E.R.D.
Nothing

The hip-hop and rock collective led by production wizard Pharrell Williams returns with more mosh-pit-creating party-starters, inevitably providing way more than its title suggests. (OCT.)

Elvis Costello
National Ransom

His new one has a song called ”Dr. Watson, I Presume.” Don’t expect elementary lyrics. (11/2)

Ne-Yo
Libra Scale

Several of the effortlessly smooth R&B jams on the singer-songwriter’s latest fit into an ambitious sci-fi love-story concept. (10/19)

Kelly Rowland
Title TBA

Rowland continues to evolve from Destiny’s Child to dance-chart diva, working here with the likes of French DJ David Guetta, Pitbull, Dr. Luke, and Tricky Stewart. (11/2)

Natasha Bedingfield
Strip Me

On her third U.S. release, the sunny Brit teams up with hitmakers like Ryan Tedder (Beyoncé, Kelly Clarkson) and John Shanks (Sheryl Crow). (11/9)

Sugarland
The Incredible Machine

First single ”Stuck Like Glue” (and its odd reggae breakdown) has certainly lived up to its name. The rest of the group’s fourth album — that title refers to the human heart — should keep pushing the pop-country envelope. (10/19)

Kanye West
Title TBA

Months of secretive work in Hawaii have led up to this eagerly anticipated album. West’s typically diverse list of rumored guests includes everyone from Beyoncé to Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon. (NOV./DEC.)

Kid Rock
Born Free

Rick Rubin (Johnny Cash, Red Hot Chili Peppers) is producing Rock’s first CD since 2007’s smash Rock N Roll Jesus. Expect an impressive lineup of guests, including T.I., Zac Brown, and ”Picture” partner Sheryl Crow. (11/16)

Josh Groban
Title TBA

Producer Rick Rubin encouraged him to co-write the bulk of this material. Groban also covers Nick Cave’s ”Straight to You.” (11/16)

Nelly
5.0

It’s been a while since his last hit, but the St. Louis rapper is making a comeback bid. (11/16)

Rascal Flatts
Nothing Like This

The Flatts got snatched up by Big Machine (home of Taylor Swift) after their label shuttered. Will their latest mark a creative change, too? (11/16)

Akon
Title TBA

Few details are available about his follow-up to 2008’s Freedom, but if past work is any indication, a healthy handful of new hooks are in store. (11/23)

Nicki Minaj
Pink Friday

All eyes are on hip-hop’s hottest female talent as she prepares her solo debut. (11/23)

My Chemical Romance
Title TBA

MCR’s Gerard Way has said their ”second attempt” at recording a new album was successful. (NOV.)

Rihanna
Title TBA

Last year’s Rated R was decidedly dark. Will the follow-up be a little brighter? (NOV.)

Crystal Bowersox
Title TBA

Mamasox didn’t win the Idol crown, but her earthy vibe won admirers. (NOV./DEC.)

Lee DeWyze
Title TBA

The American Idol winner starts recording his debut in September. Look for more heartfelt, guitar-driven rock, à la his take on U2’s ”Beautiful Day.” (11/16)

Jennifer Hudson
Title TBA

The Oscar winner returns with her first album since her self-titled 2008 debut. (NOV./DEC.)

Cee Lo Green
The Ladykiller

The Internet is abuzz over his salty new single ”F— You.” (12/7)

T.I.
King Uncaged

After a stint in prison, hip-hop’s lion is out and untamed. (TBA)

Also Due Antony and the Johnsons, Anita Baker, Belle and Sebastian, Bush, J. Cole, Phil Collins, El DeBarge, Diddy-Dirty Money, Bryan Ferry, Melanie Fiona, Ben Folds and Nick Hornby, Selena Gomez, Good Charlotte, Guster, Julianne Hough, Ice Cube, Iyaz, Jerry Lee Lewis, Reba McEntire, Chrisette Michele, Liza Minnelli, Olivia Newton-John, Of Montreal, Christina Perri, Pitbull, Robyn, Asher Roth, Seal, Jay Sean, Stone Sour, Jazmine Sullivan, Corin Tucker, Underworld, Pete Yorn, Neil Young

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