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With its base in Lincoln, Nebraska, Josh Hoyer and Soul Colossal have been close enough for an occasional tour stop in Colorado. The sextet’s powerful sound belongs in the same category as Durand Jones or St. Paul and the Broken Bones. Hoyer’s sixth studio album, Green Light (self-released) is the first where the power of a live performance is replicated on disc, thanks in part to recording sessions at Mighty Fine Studios in Denver.

Many of the tracks are dance-centric, including “Evolution,” “Crazy Love” and the title track. But Hoyer also makes some gentle steps toward social consciousness in “Beautiful People.” If we’re in the middle of a large-ensemble soul revival, Hoyer may just have served up a 21st-century analog to Marvin Gaye’s What’s Going On.

Also New & Noteworthy

The Claudettes, Go Out! (Forty Below Records) – If the latest release from Chicago’s fabulous Claudettes seems a bit less juke-joint than past efforts, it’s because keyboardist/composer Johnny Iguana crafted a set of tracks to show off vocalist Berit Ulseth’s torch-song talents. The stunning opening track “A Lovely View” got a live treatment at Lulu’s in July, but Ulseth offers more than slow-burn love songs on this album, as evidenced in the hilarious tracks “Exposure” and “Cowboy.”

Titus Andronicus, The Will to Live (Merge Records) – During its decade of existence, New Jersey’s Titus Andronicus has specialized in big statements. In mid-decade, songwriter Patrick Stickles and a pared-down band released some forgettable work, only partially recovering with 2019’s An Obelisk. Now, Stickles has gone to great lengths to produce a rowdy yet thoughtful 12-track epic on family relations. Stickles says he used Bruce Springsteen as his muse, though the song delivery more closely resembles Damian Abraham of Fucked Up. It may be trite at times, but at least Titus is attempting big ideas again.