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DIVISION OF LAURA LEE Das Not Compute ****

DoLL are like the male version of Sahara Hotnights, combining urgent garage melodies with unforgettable riffs and early-’80s punk attitude, creating a semi-epic tilt that separates the average pop bands from the truly great ones. On Das Not Compute, “Endless Factories” captures U2’s “Twilight” and “Breathe Breathe” bows under droning melancholia. A pointed U.K. influence appears in the Jesus-& Mary-Chain-sy “Sneaking Up on Mr. Prez” and the smoky Stone Roses-like “There’s a Last Time for Everything.” One of the year’s best. (Epitaph)

D12 D12 World ****

Eminem is shrewd. Wallowing in obscene amounts of fame and money, he keeps his reputation intact by helping lesser-known rappers—in this case, his old pre-fame rap crew from Detroit—up the recognition and respect ladder. D12 World’s no-nonsense beats mix with funk and beefy, bold lyrics. Eminem produced the album, lurks in the background, lets his co-stars shine. Is it sincere? Probably. But it’s all quite calculated, as well. (Shady/Interscope)

CRIONICS Human Error: Ways to Self-Destruction ***

Steps toward black-metal success: 1. Listen to Emperor, Dimmu Borgir and Carpathian Forest—your superior predecessors—and write dense, textured Swedish metal with tons of overdramatic keyboards. 2. Get your sister to work at the Mac counter in downtown Krakow and score deals on makeup for corpse paint. 3. Sew millions of silver studs and spikes onto plastic shin and arm shields. 4. Design an indecipherable pointy logo. 5. Play faster, harder and scarier than ... (Candlelight)

NEKROMANTIX Dead Girls Don’t Cry ***

Steps toward psychobilly success: 1. Listen to Tiger Army, the Meteors and the Cramps, write mind-whippingly fast rockabilly. 2. Get your sister to work at the nearest Got Beauty store and score deals on Bedhead products for your coif. 3. Buy a stand-up bass in the shape of a cross, coffin, or preferably both. 4. Sleep with it. 5. Sing only about death, zombies and/or falling in love with zombies. (Hellcat)

JOE SATRIANI Is There Love in Space? **

An hour of masturbatory prog-rock guitar noodling that wobbles dangerously close to elevator Muzak with some distortion thrown in—but not too much distortion—is a terrible waste of mind. The most technically wowing, insane guitar techniques without soul, or with a fake, pseudo-post-hippie soul indicated by such red-alarm words as “love” and “space,” is nothing compared to a simple rock song with guts. Satriani should take notes from Devin Townsend. (Epic)

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About The Author

Rebecca Vernon

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