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Bossk

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

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

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

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

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

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

Rise Against

Rise Against - Nowhere Generation (Album Review)

Photo: Wyatt Troll To say anything vaguely ‘woke’ is to be questioned and accused of virtue signalling and clout-chasing by the online hordes of the right, with messages sometimes heard but rarely listened to. But to make such accusations against Rise Against at this stage of their career, and after hearing their latest output, ‘Nowhere Generation’, would be particularly foolish.

Written by: Emma Wilkes | Date: Thursday, 10 June 2021

Rostam

Rostam - Changephobia (Album Review)

Photo: Jason Stone Rostam is at the centre of a sound that he himself helped create. As the in-house producer (and co-founder) of Vampire Weekend, the Washington D.C.-born multi-instrumentalist helped to define a wave of American indie music that is cerebral, inventive and often light-spirited, blending cutting-edge production with diverse arrangements and intense musicality.

Written by: Jacob Brookman | Date: Wednesday, 09 June 2021

Japanese Breakfast

Japanese Breakfast - Jubilee (Album Review)

If it’s true that grief takes many forms, then Japanese Breakfast’s ‘Jubilee’ suggests that joy is similarly complex. Following two excellent albums that documented the loss of her mother, Michelle Zauner’s third LP takes its time in evoking the different shades of happiness and release that make up the other end of the spectrum.

Written by: Huw Baines | Date: Tuesday, 08 June 2021

Gary Numan

Gary Numan - Intruder (Album Review)

Having spent a number albums chasing the success of his earliest monster hits with little success, synth-pop legend Gary Numan seems to have enjoyed a resurgence of sorts in recent years. Since 2011’s indifferent ‘Dead Son Rising’ his work has delved into a patchwork of industrial-goth sounds with striking purpose, leading recent albums to almost blend into one another.

Written by: Graeme Marsh | Date: Monday, 07 June 2021

Black Midi

Black Midi - Cavalcade (Album Review)

“The most exciting new guitar band in Britain,” was the Guardian’s take on Black Midi shortly after the release of their debut album ‘Schlagenheim’, and they weren’t alone in adopting this view. Hyperbolic? Perhaps. But, let’s face it, music criticism has form in that regard. 

Written by: Sam Sleight | Date: Thursday, 03 June 2021

Jorja Smith

Jorja Smith - Be Right Back (Album Review)

Jorja Smith’s voice moves with an exquisite sense of grace. On her latest project, the not-quite-LP ‘Be Right Back’, there is a melancholic tide that carries her words and emotions from interludes to choruses. This latest collection of intimate narratives tells of vulnerabilities, regrets and desires. 

Written by: Milly McMahon | Date: Tuesday, 01 June 2021

Counting Crows

Counting Crows - Butter Miracle, Suite One (Album Review)

Photo: Mark Seliger Being a Counting Crows fan requires the kind of patience usually possessed by a Jedi Master. With only six original studio albums since 1993, and a meagre three this side of the millennium, you’ll never see the band described as prolific. As such, this four song EP sounds like a frustratingly sparse offering after a seven year wait, but its stellar contents speak volumes about why the group only make music when the time is right. 

Written by: Simon Ramsay | Date: Friday, 28 May 2021

Olivia Rodrigo

Olivia Rodrigo - Sour (Album Review)

Olivia Rodrigo has been through it. Her debut album ‘Sour’ is her catharsis as she ruminates on experiences and reflections that are all very adolescent—yes, there’s a whole lot of heartache. Its trump card is a sense of universality—with amusingly catty lyrics and versatile vocal delivery, Rodrigo portrays these emotions so charmingly that it will readily transport older listeners back to their own teenage years. 

Written by: Alex Myles | Date: Thursday, 27 May 2021

Twenty One Pilots

Twenty One Pilots - Scaled and Icy (Album Review)

Photo: Mason Castillo Twenty One Pilots are capable of wonderful things. They’ve proved that over the course of the past half decade, waking the world up to their talent with their breakthrough ‘Vessel’ before doubling down with 2015’s commercial smash ‘Blurryface’ and its ambitious, diverse follow-up ‘Trench’. While there’s apparently nothing left for Tyler Joseph and Josh Dun to prove, ‘Scaled and Icy’ is perhaps the first album where it feels like their well of ambition has run dry.

Written by: Emma Wilkes | Date: Wednesday, 26 May 2021

Mdou Moctar

Mdou Moctar - Afrique Victime (Album Review)

Was Muse’s Matt Bellamy the last great rock guitar innovator? How about St. Vincent? Maybe Ed Sheeran’s use of the loop pedal marks him out as the most recent to push the instrument in new directions. What is clear is that pop is in a peculiar place: relentless synthesized textures and Auto-Tuned bedroom production have replaced the virtuoso instrumentalist. Where are the new guitar innovators?

Written by: Jacob Brookman | Date: Tuesday, 25 May 2021

Myles Kennedy

Myles Kennedy - The Ides of March (Album Review)

Photo: Chuck Brueckmann There’s little doubt that the global pandemic has polarised society in a way most of us have never experienced. Now more than ever we need rationality, perspective, understanding and respect. Reflecting on this period, Myles Kennedy’s second solo album will rightly be lauded for its musical prowess, but everything that’s great about it flows from the songwriter’s laudable sense of humanity and empathy.

Written by: Simon Ramsay | Date: Monday, 24 May 2021

Paul Weller

Paul Weller - Fat Pop (Volume 1) (Album Review)

Paul Weller is not slowing down. The singer-songwriter’s 16th solo album is a locked-down romp through pop sounds that, though not his best work, shows a high degree of focus and integrity.

Written by: Jacob Brookman | Date: Friday, 21 May 2021

St Vincent

St. Vincent - Daddy's Home (Album Review)

Photo: Zachery Michael St. Vincent arrives at her sixth studio album, ‘Daddy’s Home’, clad in a fur coat, striking and sublime amid a sepia ‘70s haze. Immersed in the thriving atmosphere of a New York bar, lost in the lull of velvet vocals, she seeks clarity from the familiar clink of champagne glasses. Remove this aesthetic mask, though, and this is a record as straight talking as its title suggests.

Written by: Rebecca Llewellyn | Date: Thursday, 20 May 2021

J Cole

J. Cole - The Off-Season (Album Review)

J. Cole is close to the top of his game. The North Carolina rapper and producer has found time away from his other passion of basketball—he recently made his debut for Rwanda-based Patriots in the Africa Basketball League—to deliver ‘The Off-Season’, an album of tremendous poise and guile with a host of well-thought-out collabs that elevate the record without compromising cohesion.

Written by: Jacob Brookman | Date: Wednesday, 19 May 2021

 
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