It’s another light week but things will start heating up again in a week or so as labels rush to release big-name titles to coordinate with the holiday shopping season.  We didn’t include “The Twilight Saga: New Moon” soundtrack, which came out off-cycle, last Friday. Expect that CD to come in No. 1, if it can knock Michael Buble out of the top spot, or No. 2. From the batch below, look for Tim McGraw to come in No. 1 on both the pop and country charts next week.
 
Cartel, “Cycles” (Wind Up): In one of the more outrageous marketing stunts, the emo band recorded its 2007 album in a Dr. Pepper-sponsored bubble for an MTV mini-series. The publicity ploy worked as the group debuted at No. 20 on the Billboard Top 200. This time the Ga.-based band has switched labels and decided to let the music lead. We’ll see where that gets them.
 
Flight of the Conchords, “I Told You I Was Freaky” (Sub Pop): Fake New Zealand duo-- and stars of their own HBO series-- releases its second set of novelty/parody songs. But when they’re this amusing, do you really care that they’re playing characters?
 
Kings of Convenience, “Declaration of Dependence” (Virgin): Norwegian folk/pop twosome of Erland Oye and Eirik Glambek Boe creates beautiful, homespun simple melodies lifted by their lilting vocals and harmonies.  Deceptively simple. Check out our interview with the pair later this week.
 
Lyle Lovett, “Natural Forces” (Lost Highway): Damn right he’s from Texas. The troubadour’s latest includes both originals and obscure covers written by some of his favorite Lone Star State songwriters.  Bonus: the CD is Amazon’s deal of the day and is available for $3.99.
 
Tim McGraw, “Southern Voice” (Curb): Country superstar’s 10th studio album continues his trend of tackling subjects both frivolous, “It’s a Business Doing Pleasure With You,” (about a gold digging girlfriend) and weighty, “You Had to Be There” and “If I Died Today.” See story here.

Rammstein, “Liebe ist fur Alle Da” (Vagrant): Berlin hard rockers return with a new set of its industrial, hard core, metal blend (which makes the album title a little ironic—it translates to Love is for All). They’re especially spreading the love in “Pussy,” the video for the first single which included scenes of women fooling around with band members.
 
Timothy B. Schmit, “Expando” (Lost Highway): Ever wonder whose voice it is that makes the Eagles’ harmonies really soar? That high, heartbreaking falsetto on “I Can’t Tell You Why?” That’s Timothy B. Schmit. His first solo album in eight years features so many guest stars, there’s hardly room for him. Buy Schmit’s CD and get Keb’Mo’, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Gram Nash, Garth Hudson, Dwight Yoakam and the Blind Boys of Alabama thrown in for free.
 
Joss Stone, “Colour Me Free” (Virgin):  British chanteuse’s latest is a Target-only exclusive that was recorded live at her mother’s club, Mama Stone, in Wellington, England… Hmmmm, we wonder where her mum got the money to buy a venue? Regardless, it would be nice if the soulful Stone managed to reclaim the spotlight that she has ceded to fellow Brits like Amy Winehouse,  Duffy and Adele lately.