Veteran guitar-pop whiz Matthew Sweet rolls into town Friday for a concert at Park West. (Opening the show is a reconstituted version of Material Issue called Material Reissue, and though I still find it incomprehensible that there could be a version of the band without founder Jim Ellison, name change or no, but that’s a discussion for another time.) Sweet is finishing a new album tentatively titled Tomorrow Forever, due early next year, and I imagine he’ll give fans a preview.
It’s also a sure bet that Sweet will play songs from 1991’s Girlfriend, which is not only his greatest record but also one of the best pop albums of the past three decades. It’s a peerless mixture of indelible melodies, gorgeous harmonies, and some of the most rocking performances ever waxed—Sweet’s band includes guitarists Robert Quine, Ivan Julian, and Richard Lloyd; drummers Fred Maher and Ric Menck; and bassist Paul Chastain (Menck and Chastain were both members of the great Velvet Crush). And the title cut is probably the most rocking song on the whole rocking album—it’s today’s 12 O’Clock Track.
Khwanta Fasawang, Lam Phaen Motorsai Tham Saeb: The Best of Lam Phaen Sister No. 1 (Em, Japan)
Various artists, Changing the Jazz at Buckingham Palace (Savoy)
Sándor Fodor, Kalotaszego Népsene: Hungarian Folk Music From Transylvania (Hungaroton)
Miranda Cuckson and Blair McMillen, Music by Ralph Shapey (Centaur)
Fennesz, Harding, and Rehberg, Di-n (Ash International)