With that tax return burning holes in my pockets, I hit the record stores this month and would like to make a few recommendations:
The Minutemen, Double Nickels on a Dime: One of the all-time punk rock classics. Inexcusably, I haven't listened to this since high school, so it was long past time for me to plug this glaring hole in my music collection. A song with the name "The Roar of the Masses Could Be Farts" only needs to be 1:21, because how much elaboration do you need?
Doug Sahm, The Genuine Texas Groover: Complete 1973 Atlantic sessions by the late embodiment of Texas music. Doug did it all -- Tex-Mex, country, horn-based blues, rock 'n' roll, etc. It was the only time he was working with a major-label budget, so he brought in Atlantic's stable of horn players like David "Fathead" Newman as well as Bob Dylan and Dr. John to mingle with his San Antonio buds like Augie Meyers. It's a limited edition two-disc package, so if you miss out, look for Rhino's The Best of Doug Sahm and Friends.
Albert King, Albert Live: I found this gem on vinyl, which apparently is the way to go since the CD omits the 15-minute "Jam in A Flat," an indispensible song. Great liner notes by Robert Palmer, also features Lowell Fulsom, Rory Gallagher and Louisiana Red.
Little Feat, Little Feat: Tragically lost this on a road trip. Found it on vinyl and the original version of "Willin'," featuring Ry Cooder, and "Brides of Jesus," make it essential.
Stuff I've had for a while that I nevertheless recommend heartily:
The Shins, My Morning Jacket, Rodney Crowell.