POP : Do You Hear What We Hear? : Prick up your antlers: Calendar's annual recordings guide is here to help you sift through the year's notable pop, jazz, classical, children's and holiday music--and the best of the box sets. : Separating Best Bets From Lumps of Coal

Calendar's pop staff surveys 40 of the nation's most popular or critically acclaimed albums :

** 1/2 BROOKS & DUNN, "Waitin' on Sundown," Arista. The country duo avoids repeating past successes. That doesn't mean singles-by-the-numbers have disappeared, but nearly half the songs dig a little deeper.

** ALAN JACKSON, "Who I Am," Arista. Jackson doesn't wrestle with demons; he just tips his Stetson politely and moseys on his way. Only occasionally does he reach beyond the superficial.

Albums are rated on a scale of one star (poor), two stars (fair), three stars (good, recommended) and four stars (excellent). A rating of five stars is reserved for reissues or retrospectives.

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