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$25 To Spare? A Guide To Album Buying

July 20, 1986|ROBERT HILBURN

Here are the latest entries in Calendar's guide to building a terrific record collection on a $25-a-month budget. Although discounts are plentiful, we assume here a price of $8 for albums, $6 for an extended-play album or EP, $4 for a 12-inch single and $2 for a traditional seven-inch single.

JUNE

Albums:

Peter Gabriel's "So" (Geffen)--Gabriel's raucous, good-humored "Sledgehammer" is certainly fun, but there's a seriousness and depth in much of the remaining material, including an absorbing duet with Kate Bush on "Don't Give Up," that contributes most to making "So" an album-of-the-year candidate. CD available.

Meat Puppets' "Out My Way" (SST)--The Arizona trio, whose last two albums were big critical favorites, steps away from its spacey, prairie-punk consciousness on parts of this EP to demonstrate that the Puppets can get down and boogie on more conventional rock terrain. Selections include a dizzy remake of Little Richard's "Good Golly Miss Molly"

Pogues' "Rum, Sodomy & the Lash" (Stiff/MCA)--On first listening, you might think this album should be filed away in a specialty bin devoted to Irish pub music or maybe even seafaring tales. But the songs offer challenging, tough-minded commentaries on social injustices and absurdities.

Single: Prince's high-scaled "Mountains" (Warner Bros.), seven-inch version.

JULY

Albums:

Peter Case's "Peter Case" (Geffen)--Case's voice and manner on stage with his old band, the Plimsouls, were reminiscent at times of John Lennon, and Case carries the comparison a step further as he asserts an artful, Lennon-esque quality and independence in this enormously ambitious and deeply introspective solo debut.

Casselberry-DuPree's "City Down" (Iceberg)--Any album that moves from Dory Previn's "Did Jesus Have a Baby Sister" to the Eagles' "Take It to the Limit" deserves a listen--and you'll be amply rewarded for your time. This female duo deals in a rich, inviting blend of gospel, country, reggae and African chants on topics that range from apartheid to feminism.

Madonna's "True Blue" (Sire)--The singles ("Live to Tell" and "Papa Don't Preach") are just the starting points in a collection which suggests it is finally time to start taking Madonna seriously. The bonus is that Madonna has upgraded her art (especially the singing) without sacrificing the vitality and charm that characterized her best early hits. CD due Aug. 4.

Single: none.

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