Weekly US music releases: The National, Meat Loaf and Broadway's Spider-Man

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The Independent Culture

An eclectic collection of releases comes up on May 11 in the US, including alt-rock act The National, the resurrection of 1970s rock-icon Meat Loaf with some surprise guests, also Keane, Crash Test Dummies, and Carney with Reeve Carney who is set to play Peter Parker/Spider-Man on the Broadway stage, sometime soon.

The National, High Violet
This Brooklyn indie pop/rock band offers an album of 11 melodic and haunting songs on the 4AD label, led by the "Bloodbuzz Ohio" single. With a handful of records over the last decade and a documentary by French filmmaker Vincent Moon in 2008, the band will tour nonstop at sold-out shows and major summer fests in Europe and North America.

Meat Loaf, Hang Cool Teddy Bear
This album, produced by Rob Cavallo (Green Day, Avril Lavigne), features an impressive list of guest artists: actors Jack Black and Hugh Laurie of House MD, Queen's Brian May and guitar-god Steve Vai. Released on Loud & Proud/Roadrunner Records, the song "Elvis in Vegas" is co-written by Jon Bon Jovi. The deluxe 2-CD edition features 23 tracks with live performances of classic hits "Bat Out of Hell" and "2 Out of 3 Ain't Bad."

Keane, Night Train
With a series of hits and No. 1 albums, this multi-platinum melodic rock band from Britain releases a new eight-song EP collection on Interscope, recorded during their Perfect Symmetry world tour. Guest artists featured include Japanese MC Tigarah and Somali-Canadian rapper K'Naan who sings on the "Stop For a Minute" single.

Carney, Mr. Green, Volume 1
Fronted by actor/musician Reeve Carney, this LA band mixes rock genres on this debut album on Interscope Records, leading with "Love Me Chase Me" featuring actress/singer Evan Rachel Wood ( Across the Universe). When Spider-Man takes the Broadway stage with music by Bono and The Edge, and directed by Julie Taymor, Carney takes the lead role as Peter Parker.

Crash Test Dummies, Oooh La La
The Canadian folk-rockers from the 1990s have pared down to Brad Roberts and his distinctive baritone with Ellen Reid's vocals in a collaboration with producer Stewart Lerman, who has worked with filmmakers Wes Anderson and Martin Scorcese.