Mandy Moore's new album tops our Must List: What's on yours?

Yesterday was an epic day for indie music releases. Both Phoenix’s Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix and Grizzly Bear’s Veckatimest dropped. Don’t let the indie label frighten you, however. Phoenix’s "1901" is a summery bundle of joy, and both Grizzly Bear’s "Two Weeks" and "Cheerleader" are Beach Boys-esque slow jams that can be appreciated by all.

But, there was a third indie release that tops our Must List this week: Mandy Moore. Yes, I’m actually considering Mrs. Ryan Adams — a.k.a. the one-time "Candy"-maker, A Walk to Remember alum — as an indie artist. Her sixth studio album (wow, six already?), Amanda Leigh, definitively proves the starlet is all grown up. Better yet, she’s grown up to be a confident musician who, above all, has great taste in her collaborators. She cowrote the bulk of Amanda Leigh with musician Mike Viola, who among many accomplishments helped produce the titular song from Tom Hanks’ beloved (by me, at least) ’90s flick That Thing You Do! The result is an impressive 11-track collection of ’70s-inspired folk/pop. Standout songs include the lovely "Everblue" and the lullaby-like "Merrimack River," which you can listen to below.

So what’s on your must list this week, folks? The new Jonas Brothers video? Revolutionary Road on DVD? So You Think You Can Dance? Share your top three Must List picks in the comments below, and remember to include your e-mail address in case we decide to use your submission in the magazine. And don’t forget to check PopWatch each day for a new Must List poll question.

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  • wendy

    my must list would be if the housewives of NJ recap would hurry and show up on here.

  • Tim

    I clearly am totally out of touch when the description ‘indie’ might frighten a reader as opposed to anything involving the words ‘Mandy Moore’. This will be my final day visiting this website. Yikes.

  • Elizabeth W

    “Amanda Leigh” is definitely on my Must List as well, along with “Andy Barker, P.I.” on Hulu and the very concept of a whole summer to play catch-up on shows I’m behind on, or to just chill with my old DVD box-sets.

  • Luisa

    Even though it’s long gone, PUSHING DAISIES is a Must. The last three episodes are airing starting Saturday. I already saw them at PaleyFest, but I know I’m just going to choke up all over again. Still cannot believe ABC dared cancel the sweetest, most original show on the air. I’m looking forward (and yet, not) to filling my PD mug with some hot chocolate, warming up a slice of cherry pie, and saying farewell forever to these wonderful characters. Sniff.

  • cabri

    My Must List is topped with rewatching my Burn Notice S1 DVD in prep for the Burn Notice S3 premiere next week and the S2 DVD arriving post haste. :)

  • Jeff

    When did band names become such gibberish? So many fly by night ‘indie’ bands lately. It’s like the machine chews them up weekly and spits them out. I find I can’t keep up or care, certainly none of them gain any traction or long term fans. You’ll be raving about some other gibberish bands in a month and forgotten these. At least I can understand Mandy Moore as a guilty pleasure. But ‘indie’? I don’t think so. Maybe she is on a non-major label now or whatever, but for better or worst artists get their genre assignment at birth/onset of popularity. So once mainstream, always mainstream. Hopefully some of these bands you write about have staying power. It would be nice if you could elaborate what makes them such standouts, the ‘right’ music vs ‘right now’ music. And comparing them to Beach Boys doesn’t do a thing for me. How about a more substantial review of why they should be listened to? Life’s too short for sound-a-likes.

  • Jaclyn

    Sonya Tayeh — The new regular judge/choreographer on SYTYCD mixes just the right amount of flakey with passion and crazy talent.
    All American Rejects’ “Gives You Hell” — Blare it with the windows down and sing along til yer throat bleeds.
    “Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian” — Bobblehead Einsteins, Hank Azaria with a lisp, Owen Wilson in miniature … What’s not to love?

  • Jennifer

    -www.pandora.com
    -Coldplay’s *free* LeftRightLeftRightLeft album

  • LauraBC

    I think it has to be “Amanda Leigh” for me as well — it’s the perfect summer album.
    Designing Women S1 DVD also makes my list.

  • Ashley H

    “Paranoid” music video from the Jonas Brothers is definitely on my must list. The three brothers from New Jersey are proving themselves to be a quite the performers with their latest endeavor. While I am not a huge fan of the synth work on the song, I was happy to see their lyrics grow, their voices (mainly Nick’s) develop and mature, as well as create a kick-ass video that comes on the heels of “Lovebug,” another stellar video. The whole industry might be ready to write off the Jonas Brothers, I am looking at you Brook Barnes, but in actuality the band has sold 800,000 tickets, just finished the South American leg of their world tour, and is now prepping for a great summer. I cannot wait to buy their album in June and see them live this July!

  • Brett Sorensen

    Hands Down… Taylor Swift’s Concert… With inspiration, meeting fans while singing, acoustic set, and back up dancers…. WHAT more could you want? PS if you need more, it rains on stage… MOOD Ecstatic… LEVEL 10

  • steve

    you know it’s a slow week when the ultra-generic mandy moore is at the top of your must-list.

  • Davey

    I heard Mandy Moore sing her new song on Ellen yesterday. I was tuneless and forgettable. I felt sorry for her. She’s a pretty good actress, she should pursue more acting.

  • Jeff Venuti

    Definitely has to be Frankmusik’s “Confusion Girl (Don Diablo likes to slowdance remix)”. Diablo takes an already stellar song from Frankmusik and turns it into a chill, poppy new song.

  • Timothy Jackson

    You know what EW’s Must List needs? Lights. The up-and-coming, Juno-New-Artist-award-winning pop songstress from Canada doesn’t get as much attention in the US as she should, her songs ‘February Air’, ‘Ice’ and ‘Drive My Soul’ are all awesome songs. She’ll also be playing the first half of the Warped Tour, and her upcoming full-length release tentatively titled ‘The Listening’ is set to drop in late August (she already has a self-titled six-track EP out featuring the aforementioned three singles). Lights rocks, and more people need to check her out! http://www.iamlights.com or http://www.myspace.com/lights

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