Sing It Loud
Unlike many showier singers, lang knows that there is a world of nuance between a wail and a whisper. She explores it all with her velvety voice as, leading her new band, the chanteuse veers between torch and twang.
Always in the shadow of Daryl Hall, Oates hits his solo stride on Mississippi Mile, covering Americana territory with bluesy originals and rootsy remakes like "All Shook Up" and Hall & Oates' own "You Make My Dreams Come True."
Eight years after placing seventh on Idol, Caldwell finally releases her pop-rock debut. Solid if unspectacular, it features some pretty good Kelly Clarkson knockoffs, while also calling to mind Melissa Etheridge on "Heart Like Mine."
THE PRETTY RECKLESS
Light Me Up
When it comes to actors turned singers, Gossip Girl costar Taylor Momsen, fronting this band, is one of the better ones. She makes a credible Courtney Love wannabe on sleazy-fun rockers. But the album loses steam on the slow stuff.