New music: 3 cool albums worth checking out in fall 2020

Jim Harrington, The Mercury News on

Published in Entertainment News

Here are three recent albums that are definitely worth spinning:

"Work Hard and Be Nice," Michael Franti & Spearhead

The Bay Area act, which draws from folk, hip-hop, reggae, pop, jam rock and other musical styles, serves up another big dish of positive vibes with its 11th studio album. So consider putting on "Work Hard and Be Nice" the next time you're feeling blue. "Every song on the album is about the power of optimism to get us through our darkest moments and find the light in our loves, lives and for the planet," Franti says.

"All of My Best Friends," Hillsong Young & Free

The Grammy-nominated Christian music group, which has garnered seven No. 1 singles since forming in 2013, returns with another uplifting entry to its catalog. "I think our greatest hope for our music is that people, whatever their background, circumstance or belief, would know that there is a purpose for their life," says Young & Free's Melodie Wagner. "That there is more to life than what they see and that they're not alone and never have been." The album, the band's fourth to date, features 20 newly written songs, including the mighty chart-topper "Best Friends." Details: hillsong.com/youngandfree


"Faune," Raphael Pannier Quartet

Acclaimed French drummer-composer Raphael Pannier delivers a simply remarkable debut, leading his longtime quartet of alto saxophonist Miguel Zenon, pianist Aaron Goldberg and bassist Francois Moutin through a collection of both American jazz standards and French classical pieces. Classical pianist Giorgi Mikadze is also showcased on this album, which serves as a strong testimony that Pannier is someone who should be a force in jazz for years to come. Details: www.raphaelpannier.com

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