= '<' . '?xml version="1.0" encoding="iso-8859-1"?' . '>' ?>
The Wallflowers - Exit Wounds (Album Review)
Photo: Yasmin Than
Whether celebrated or resisted, craved or feared, wilful or enforced, the untameable beast that is change affects almost every aspect of our human experience on a near daily basis. Providing more than enough fuel for The Wallflowers’ long overdue return, ‘Exit Wounds’ finds Jakob Dylan ruminating on all things transition over the band’s most sparkling Americana effort to date.
Written by: Simon Ramsay | Date: Wednesday, 21 July 2021
Clairo - Sling (Album Review)
Your early 20s are not always seen as a time geared towards domesticity, but it’s a dynamic that Clairo realised was much needed within her life following the breakout success of her debut LP.
Written by: Matty Pywell | Date: Tuesday, 20 July 2021
The Goon Sax - Mirror II (Album Review)
Photo: Hugo Nobay
Brisbane trio The Goon Sax have returned with a third album comprising sharply observed post-punk tales of millennial angst. The 40 minute record—their first with venerable indie label Matador—takes us on a journey through low stakes emotional trauma and digital ennui.
Written by: Jacob Brookman | Date: Monday, 19 July 2021
Vince Staples - Vince Staples (Album Review)
Photo: Zamar Velez
Vince Staples always seems to have the upper hand, or at least to have something in reserve that we, his listeners, have to figure out on our own. His self-titled new record, a collaboration with producer Kenny Beats, revolves around glitchy production that would be mellow if the whole atmosphere wasn’t so stifling. The real world hangs heavy over Staples’ loose flows, which invariably have a sting in the tail.
Written by: Huw Baines | Date: Friday, 16 July 2021
Quivers - Golden Doubt (Album Review)
On ‘Golden Doubt’ Quivers trade in an unabashedly romantic strain of jangle pop, adding colour to the wiry blueprints of their 1980s forerunners with scenes from bruised relationships and terrible loss, set against four part harmonies and rich guitars.
Written by: Huw Baines | Date: Thursday, 15 July 2021
Jack Savoretti - Europiana (Album Review)
Photo: Chris Floyd
If albums were rated according to best intentions, even the most bitter listener would happily give Jack Savoretti’s sojourn into the worlds of disco, funk and ‘80s synth-pop a big thumbs up. Designed as a soundtrack to the summer holidays we’ve recently been denied, the singer wanted ‘Europiana’ to provide much needed escapism after a year of turmoil and to celebrate the music that binds citizens of Europe together. A lofty goal.
Written by: Simon Ramsay | Date: Wednesday, 07 July 2021
Squirrel Flower - Planet (i) (Album Review)
As any artists’ career picks up speed there is a sense of things coming into focus—of rough edges being sanded smooth—and yet it’s rare that the listener is able to share in that process almost as it happens. But with only 18 months separating it from Squirrel Flower’s debut LP, ‘I Was Born Swimming’, that is the lasting impact of spinning the excellent ‘Planet (i)’.
Written by: Huw Baines | Date: Tuesday, 06 July 2021
John Grant - Boy From Michigan (Album Review)
Photo: Hörður Sveinsson
Blue pill or red pill? If it’s blue, you can wake up in your bed and go on believing that the world is a wonderful, warm place full of rainbows and gumdrop smiles. The red pill will mean you dig into the toxic systems of patriarchy and capitalism that underpin everything…do you want to see how deep the rabbit hole goes?
Written by: Jacob Brookman | Date: Friday, 02 July 2021
Lucy Dacus - Home Video (Album Review)
Photo: Ebru Yildiz
Nostalgia for one’s teenage years might also be accompanied by the feeling that your teeth are on edge, with the syrupy goodness of reminiscing offset by the many false starts, awkward pauses and permanent endings of youth.
Written by: Huw Baines | Date: Wednesday, 30 June 2021
Rose City Band - Earth Trip (Album Review)
Ripley Johnson’s third album under his Rose City Band guise is another to have benefited from lockdown restrictions. Johnson took advantage of the lull to connect with nature—sleeping under the stars, doing a spot of gardening and bathing outside. ‘Earth Trip’, therefore, feels like an album title with a purpose.
Written by: Graeme Marsh | Date: Monday, 28 June 2021
Garbage - No Gods No Masters (Album Review)
Remember when John Cusack inadvertently found a portal into the mind of a certain enigmatic thespian in Being John Malkovich? Well, an album by Garbage is, essentially, the same as that particular trip, only with singer Shirley Manson in the title role. On the band’s latest effort she invites us further into that rabbit hole than ever before, taking the world, and herself, to task over a storming salvo of retro-futuristic electro-pop-rock.
Written by: Simon Ramsay | Date: Friday, 25 June 2021
Migos - Culture III (Album Review)
The final chapter of the Culture trilogy took a while to create, and it takes a while to listen to. Across 19 songs and 75 minutes Quavo, Offset, and Takeoff deliver ‘Culture III’, following a pandemic-extended delay that included solo records for the trio alongside simmering hype and expectation.
Written by: Milly McMahon | Date: Wednesday, 23 June 2021
Sleater-Kinney - Path of Wellness (Album Review)
When you’re young you view things through a black and white lens—lines are defined, sharp, and usually not to be crossed. As you get older those lines begin to blur and your outlook is awash with grey. Though Sleater-Kinney have always been trailblazers and tastemakers, some have followed their development only as far as it remained within the confines of the indie-rock and riot grrrl milieu.
Written by: Laura Johnson | Date: Tuesday, 22 June 2021
Crowded House - Dreamers Are Waiting (Album Review)
Your toes could be on fire, an army of lice could have colonised your scalp, a civilisation-ending space rock could be headed straight for earth, yet if you’re listening to ‘Dreamers Are Waiting,’ Crowded House’s first album in over 10 years, everything will feel just fine. Medicinal music with the power to rejuvenate, it’s a beautiful, almost ornamentally gorgeous, record full of sentiments and sounds that will flood your darker days with light.
Written by: Simon Ramsay | Date: Monday, 21 June 2021
Bossk - Migration (Album Review)
Bossk’s ‘Audio Noir’ is a modern classic in the post-metal underground. A bold statement, perhaps, but the seven tracks that made up the band’s 2016 debut stand shoulder to shoulder with the best of Cult of Luna, Russian Circles and Neurosis’ output in recent years, speaking volumes about their quality.
Written by: Sam Sleight | Date: Friday, 18 June 2021
Maroon 5 - Jordi (Album Review)
Photo: Travis Schneider
Featuring a star-studded lineup, Maroon 5’s ‘Jordi’ is an album that sets out to be impressive from the get-go. Certainly, it doesn’t disappoint at surface level, but scratch a little deeper and you’ll find things are a little more tangled than they initially appear.
Written by: Rebecca Llewellyn | Date: Thursday, 17 June 2021
Marina - Ancient Dreams in a Modern Land (Album Review)
With her fifth album ‘Ancient Dreams in a Modern Land’ Marina has made her most direct work to date—taking a stand against injustice while appealing to the uncontrollable nature of Earth and the cycles of karma that may come back to bite.
Written by: Matty Pywell | Date: Wednesday, 16 June 2021
James - All The Colours of You (Album Review)
Photo: Lewis Knaggs
Three years on from the indifferent ‘Living in Extraordinary Times’, James have turned to Jacknife Lee (U2, R.E.M.) to see if their fortunes can be revived, with ‘All The Colours of You’ the result of the first meeting of minds between the group and legendary producer.
Written by: Graeme Marsh | Date: Tuesday, 15 June 2021
Liz Phair - Soberish (Album Review)
‘Soberish’ is the album that marks a return to music for alt-rock legend Liz Phair. With this being her first release in over a decade, anticipation has percolated among fans and the industry at large following recent in-depth visits to her past through the avenues of reissue and memoir. Far removed from the indie-grunge of ‘Exile in Guyville’, her towering mid-90s statement, Phair instead embraces a soft, but by no means gentle, rock montage approach on ‘Soberish’.
Written by: Rebecca Llewellyn | Date: Monday, 14 June 2021
Wolf Alice - Blue Weekend (Album Review)
You could argue that when Wolf Alice took home the 2018 Mercury Prize for ‘Visions of a Life’ they did so with the lesser of their first two records, with 2015’s brilliant debut ‘My Love is Cool’ making do with only a nomination. ‘Blue Weekend’ seems certain to add another chapter to this particular story.
Written by: Graeme Marsh | Date: Friday, 11 June 2021