BETTER OBLIVION COMMUNITY CENTER, Better Oblivion Community Center (Dead Oceans): ***

An unexpected folk-pop collaboration from Conor Oberst and Phoebe Bridgers that, not unexpectedly, has the comfortable appeal of friends sitting around making music. “Exception to the Rule” and “Sleepwalkin’” rattle with nervous energy but the strongest tracks are the most relaxed, and benefit from the duo’s easy vocal chemistry and lyrical focus. Highlights: the melodic “Service Road,” “My City” (“Risk it all on the game of chance/ Chasing love like an ambulance”), “Dylan Thomas” (“The truth is anybody’s guess/ These talking heads are saying/ ‘The king is only playing/ A game of four-dimensional chess’”). Betteroblivioncommunitycenter.org

SALIF KEITA, Un Autre Blanc (Naïve): ***½

A purportedly final album from the legendary Malian artist before he retires to focus on his Foundation for Albinism. Musically, it smoothly blends West African folk melodies and percussion with pop production and guests like Angelique Kidjo. Less soulful and contemplative than 2002’s “Moffou” or 2009’s “La Différence,” it’s pleasing in the way of a social community dance, with mellow rhythms and Keita’s expressively “golden” voice — like velvet rolled in fine sand — bringing people together. Highlights: the hopeful “Syrie,” “Ngamale (featuring Ladysmith Black Mambazo).” salifkeita.net, salifkeita.us

MERCURY REV, Bobbie Gentry’s ‘The Delta Sweete’ Revisited (Partisan/Bella Union): ***½

Recorded in the wake of her career-defining classic “Ode to Billie Joe,” Bobbie Gentry’s 1968 album “The Delta Sweete” was similarly informed by her Mississippi upbringing. Mercury Rev’s inspired reprisal of that swampy song cycle honors it with spacious, often psychedelic arrangements that reinforce its rustic settings while complementing diverse vocalists (including Phoebe Bridgers, Rachel Goswell and Lucinda Williams). Not all possess Gentry’s husky warmth, but most mix sensuality with stylistic polish — notably Norah Jones’ enticing reading of “Okolona River Bottom Band,” Hope Sandoval’s dreamy transformation of Jimmy Reed’s “Big Boss Man,” and Margo Price’s delivery of “Sermon” like a sinner who’s heard “the shufflin’ of angel’s feet.” mercuryrev.com

THE DIP, The Dip Delivers (self-released): ****

“Truth in advertising” could well be the subtitle here, as the Seattle-based soul septet make good on the promise of their singles and live shows. Hooky tracks like previously issued groover “Sure Don’t Miss You,” the funky single “Advertising,” “She Gave Me the Keys,” the encouraging “Atlas” and sinuous instrumental “Sea Snake” charm with sparkling arrangements (electric guitars, horns, percussion) and — particularly in the case of “Keys” — infectiously upbeat spirit. RIYL to dance like you’re at a ’60s sock hop or need a musical pick-me-up. thedipmusic.com