Kevin Bryan delivers his verdict on some of this week's CD releases.

Bruce Springsteen,"Western Stars" (Columbia Records)- The release of a new Bruce Springsteen album may no longer be the major cultural event that it once was during the great man's creative heyday in the seventies and eighties but he can still be relied upon to deliver the goods in no uncertain fashion whenever he makes one of his increasingly infrequent forays into the recording studio. The long awaited follow up to 2014's "High Hopes" represents something of a musical departure for "The Boss" as he turns his back on the E Street Band for a while in order to indulge in a feast of lush string laden balladry that's often rather reminiscent of Jimmy Webb's work with Glen Campbell during the late sixties and early seventies. The subject matter of the songs remains pure Springsteen however, as you'll discover for yourself if you lend an unbiased ear to prime cuts such as "The Wayfarer," "Drive Fast" or "Moonlight Motel."

Albert Castiglia,"Masterpiece" (Gulf Coast Records)- Florida based bluesman Albert Castiglia paid his dues as a member of the late great Junior Wells' backing band and is now firmly established as one of the finest singer-guitarists operating in the genre today. Albert's latest album,"Masterpiece," was co-produced by his friend and colleague Mike Zito and provides an ideal vehicle for his raw and passionate approach to music-making as he reflects on the parlous state of contemporary American society via fine tracks such as "Heavy" and the acoustic "Love Will Win The War."

Jefferson Airplane,"Sweeping Up The Spotlight" (Retro World)-This fascinating historical document chronicles the revolutionary West Coast rockers' show at New York's legendary Fillmore East venue in November 1969. The band had already enjoyed a measure of commercial success via hits such as "White Rabbit" and "Somebody To Love," but they were already starting to divide into two distinct factions by this stage, with future Hot Tuna stalwarts Jorma Kaukonen and Jack Casady beginning to pursue their own distinctive musical vision as the Airplane launched into vibrant crowd pleasers such as "Come Back Baby" and "The Ballad of You & Me & Pooneii" alongside an epic rendition of Fred Neil's "The Other Side Of This Life."

"Stand By Me" (Union Square Music)- Union Square's latest highly listenable addition to the archive anthology market boasts far more than the standard quota of bona-fide classics amongst its 100 tracks. Diversity and eclecticism are the order of the day in a 5 CD package which showcases a haphazardly organised selection of gems including Love's "Alone Again Or," Betty Wright's "Clean Up Woman" and Brook Benton's "Rainy Night in Georgia" to name but a few.