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Fri, Oct 26, 2012, 01:00

EOIN BUTLER's guide to downloads, singles and free audiostreams

TAYLOR SWIFT & ED SHEERAN

Everything Has Changed Big Machine **

Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran? Not since John O’Shea and Darren O’Dea at the back against Germany has so novel a pairing inspired such trepidation. In a typically slushy ballad, Swift claims that “18 hours” of Sheeran’s “green eyes and freckles” have left her wanting more. I’d like to see that tested under lab conditions.

MARK EITZEL

Break the Champagne Merge Records ****

Twenty years ago, in perhaps his best known song, Mark Eitzel sought songwriting advice from crooner Johnny Mathis. Now, in a series of masochistic YouTube videos to promote his new album, the former American Music Club singer consults a stylist, who says Mark looks like a gay homeless person; a voice coach, who tells him his music is terrible; and comedian Neil Hamburger, who remarks that Eitzel’s fans are probably too old and suicidal to buy records anymore. It’s like The X Factor for underachieving, middle-aged indie rockers!

JUSTIN BIEBER ft NICKI MINAJ

Beauty and a Beat Island ***

Haha, or as I’d have called it: Booty and the Bieb. (Let me check Google to see if I’m the first to make that lame joke . . . Damnit!)

THE INVISIBLE

Generational ****

Basically, a constipated sounding man repeating the same adjective over and over until it loses all meaning. What’s not to love? youtube.com

KENDRICK LAMAR

The Heart Pt 3 (Will You Let It Die?) Polydor ***

“When the whole world sees you as ’Pac reincarnated/ That’s enough pressure to make you live your life sedated.” If rapper Kendrick Lamar was struggling with the burden of expectation, the ecstatic reviews that greeted his Good Kid, m.A.A.d City album this week should offer some relief. That is, unless the Compton native prefers living his life sedated. (He wouldn’t be the first.)