TOP PICK – CD
Archers of Loaf: Icky Mettle
These North Carolina indie rockers were indie rock when the term actually meant something. Their 1993 debut deservedly gets the deluxe, two-disc treatment, complete with singles, b-sides, and leftovers. The band's powerful jagged sound can still be heard in any number of today's best bands. Best extra: all of 1994's excellent Archers of Loaf vs. the Greatest of All Time EP.
Donnie Darko: 10th Anniversary Edition
(Twentieth Century Fox)
This is something like the 37th home-video version of this movie. But that's OK, since we find something new to love about it every time we watch it. The latest edition includes a DVD, digital copy, and two Blu-rays, one with the theatrical cut and one with the extended director’s cut of the 2001 cult classic. There are other extras too, but it's the mind-blowing, time-shattering movie that you should see again. And again.
Eastbound & Down: The Complete Second Season
Danny McBride's Kenny Powers is one of the most unlovable characters on TV these days … and we totally love him. The second season of HBO's comedy series includes all seven episodes about a former baseball player who also happens to be one of the world's biggest douchebags. Season two ends up in Mexico after a return to the big leagues stalls. Check out the Big Red Cockfighting featurette.
Alicia Keys: Songs in A Minor: Anniversary Collector's Edition
Keys celebrates the 10th anniversary of her debut album with a three-disc set that includes a bonus CD of remixes, demos, and live cuts, plus a DVD with videos and a documentary. The album itself remains a milestone in '00s R&B, a sweet, sultry mix of old-school soul and sophisticated pop. “Fallin',” “A Woman's Worth,” and a cover of Prince's “How Come You Don't Call Me” remain highlights.
Patti Smith: Outside Society
This CD gathers 18 of Smith's best songs from 1975 to 2007. Of course you should be listening to albums like Horses, Radio Ethiopia, and Dream of Life in their entirety, but this isn't a bad way to get to know one of rock's best singer-songwriters. Besides a radio edit of one song, there's nothing new here. But when you got “Gloria,” “Free Money,” and “Because the Night,” why complain?