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Twin Atlantic

Twin Atlantic - Power (Album Review)

Plenty has happened in the world of Twin Atlantic since the Glasgow rockers released ‘GLA’ three years ago.  Firstly, frontman Sam McTrusty discovered he was experiencing the sensory phenomenon synesthesia, a revelation that contributed to how the band’s fifth album, ‘Power’, sounds.

Written by: Graeme Marsh | Date: Thursday, 30 January 2020

Mura Masa

Mura Masa - R.Y.C (Album Review)

Mura Masa has drenched his 2020 sound in realism and regret. Through a fractured, tangled web of nostalgia, punk and indie-electronica, his sophomore LP ‘R.Y.C’ (Raw Youth Collage) challenges audiences to reflect on and dissect the multifaceted message and aesthetic of his sound. 

Written by: Milly McMahon | Date: Wednesday, 29 January 2020

Wire

Wire - Mind Hive (Album Review)

Over 40 years into their career, Wire appear restless. Of course, there’s no great surprise there. With each new album the post-punk greats continue to reinvent themselves, stripping out well-worn parts in favour of others that might set the whole thing spinning like a hellish Catherine wheel.

Written by: Huw Baines | Date: Tuesday, 28 January 2020

The Courteeners

Courteeners - More. Again. Forever. (Album Review)

On the Courteeners’ sixth studio album. ‘More. Again. Forever.’, frontman Liam Fray dips a toe into new waters. Having been slapped with the ‘lad rock’ tag since the release of their 2008 debut ‘St. Jude’, the Mancunians have outlasted a number of their peers simply because, aside from the odd foray into the unknown, they’re better at delivering what’s expected of them.

Written by: Graeme Marsh | Date: Tuesday, 28 January 2020

Mac Miller

Mac Miller - Circles (Album Review)

Photo: Christian Weber ‘Circles’, Mac Miller's posthumous sixth album, represents his artistry with a clarity that feels both vulnerable and distinctly warm and reassuring. The diary-like compendium, which was in the works as a companion piece to 'Swimming' before the rapper’s death in 2018, moves with a built-in sense of irony, desperation and wisdom.

Written by: Milly McMahon | Date: Monday, 27 January 2020

Algiers

Algiers - There is No Year (Album Review)

Photo: Christian Högstedt On Algiers’ third studio record, ‘There is No Year’, the Atlanta natives have reined in the production maximalism of previous offerings in favour of a more open-ended, spacious sound. The result is an album of thematic endeavour and churchy righteousness that struggles when dealing with tonal variation and lyrical specifics.

Written by: Jacob Brookman | Date: Friday, 24 January 2020

The Marcus King Band

Marcus King - El Dorado (Album Review)

Traversing soul, rock ‘n’ roll, blues, southern rock and country like a dozen legends rolled into one, Marcus King’s debut solo album is an unashamedly vintage slice of Americana that mesmerises courtesy of enchanting sonic beauty, radiant nostalgic warmth and timeless sentiments. That said, can someone from South Carolina please confirm he’s really 23 years old? There’s no way a youngster could produce such a classic-sounding record full of this much heart, soul and hard earned wisdom, is there?

Written by: Simon Ramsay | Date: Thursday, 23 January 2020

Bombay Bicycle Club

Bombay Bicycle Club - Everything Else Has Gone Wrong (Album Review)

Photo: Josh Shinner There’s something reassuring about the fact that Bombay Bicycle Club haven’t misplaced the tools needed to make a Bombay Bicycle Club record in the years since the band called it a day.

Written by: Helen Payne | Date: Thursday, 23 January 2020

Georgia

Georgia - Seeking Thrills (Album Review)

Photo: Joseph Connor ‘Seeking Thrills’ is the second record from producer and vocalist Georgia Barnes, and it’s a road trip powered by juddering synths and electro beats, stopping off at Detroit techno, Chicago house and Scandi pop. She has a singing voice that is playful and versatile, and a way with production that is detailed in terms of both technical prowess and deep musicality.

Written by: Jacob Brookman | Date: Wednesday, 22 January 2020

Halsey

Halsey - Manic (Album Review)

Halsey’s ‘Manic’ begins with a statement. The opening song is called Ashley, the artist’s real name, and it sets the stage for a mixed bag that nevertheless continues the pop powerhouse’s evolution as a raw, honest artist.

Written by: Milly McMahon | Date: Tuesday, 21 January 2020

And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead

...And You Will Know Us By the Trail of Dead - X: The Godless Void and Other Stories (Album Review)

Photo: Viktor Scott ...And You Will Know Us By the Trail of Dead’s 10th album (and first since 2014) straddles art-rock and post-hardcore, while frequently delving into operatic prog and indie grunge. It’s a tempestuous blend; sometimes thrilling, sometimes hypnotic and very occasionally flat, despite high emotional intensity. The Austin, Texas band have thrown everything at this, including the kitchen sink, fridge-freezer, washing machine and mug tree.

Written by: Jacob Brookman | Date: Monday, 20 January 2020

Sons of Apollo

Sons of Apollo - MMXX (Album Review)

For fans of music that dwarfs the very notion of epic, there won’t be many better ways to start this decade than by listening to Sons of Apollo’s ‘MMXX’, a subtlety-be-damned feast of high calibre progressive metal that doesn’t skimp on jaw-dropping excess. Having perfected what keyboard player Derek Sherinian referred to as ‘the art of strategic wankery’ on their 2017 debut ‘Psychotic Symphony’, the quintet have produced a very confident and cohesive follow up that’s notable for its ferocious levels of chemistry and exhilarating instrumental chops.

Written by: Simon Ramsay | Date: Friday, 17 January 2020

Poppy

Poppy - I Disagree (Album Review)

​ What the fuck is going on with Poppy? That’s the burning question being asked by those who have stumbled across the campaign for her new album, ‘I Disagree’, which serves as a reboot of her musical persona by switching out tooth-achingly sweet pop for something approaching nü-metal revival.

Written by: Laura Johnson | Date: Thursday, 16 January 2020

Selena Gomez

Selena Gomez - Rare (Album Review)

In our era of braggadocio, unfettered egos and online oversharing, Selena Gomez's third solo album is stripped back, vulnerable and fittingly named ‘Rare’. A little over four years after the release of her previous full length ‘Revival’, a more sophisticated 2.0 version of Gomez steps forward, grown and self-assured. 

Written by: Milly McMahon | Date: Wednesday, 15 January 2020

Field Music

Field Music - Making A New World (Album Review)

Field Music’s seventh studio LP is the Sunderland band’s self-described first ‘legitimate concept album’, which grew out of a project with the Imperial War Museum.

Written by: Jacob Brookman | Date: Monday, 13 January 2020

The Big Moon

The Big Moon - Walking Like We Do (Album Review)

Photo: Pooneh Ghana While it’s not quite in the realm of Dylan going electric, the Big Moon’s decision to pare back the guitars on their second LP is a head-turning one. A few years on from picking up a Mercury Prize nomination for their debut, ‘Love in the 4th Dimension’, the quartet have ditched that record’s hook-heavy, distorted tangle in favour of clean pop lines and glittering synths.

Written by: Huw Baines | Date: Thursday, 09 January 2020

Stormzy

Stormzy - Heavy is the Head (Album Review)

Stormzy’s second studio album is a bigger, more tightly constructed version of his 2017 debut, ‘Gang Signs and Prayer’, and it finds the south London grime artist in confident, expansive and familiarly political mood. 

Written by: Jacob Brookman | Date: Friday, 20 December 2019

Harry Styles

Harry Styles - Fine Line (Album Review)

That Harry Styles chose genteel pop-rock as his mode of solo expression remains an intriguing, surprising turn of events. After the mannered, occasionally beige, opening statement made by his self-titled debut back in 2017, ‘Fine Line’ is tasked with adding depth and nuance beyond his expressive voice and devilish good looks.

Written by: Huw Baines | Date: Thursday, 19 December 2019

Stone Sour

Stone Sour - Hello, You Bastards (Album Review)

Although the average metal fan won’t exactly be in thrall to ‘90s romcom Jerry Maguire, it does contain a quote that’s pertinent here. At the conclusion of his passionately protracted monologue, Renee Zellweger famously tells Tom Cruise “you had me at hello.” Speaking with similar heart about this live offering, Stone Sour guitarist Josh Rand proclaimed, “We're extremely proud of the fact it's 100% live with absolutely no overdubs!”, before needlessly unveiling plenty of details about the release. Josh, you had us at ‘100% live.’

Written by: Simon Ramsay | Date: Wednesday, 18 December 2019

Camila Cabello

Camila Cabello - Romance (Album Review)

Channelling the late ‘90s pop flair that established Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera, Camila Cabello has unleashed what appears on the surface to be a high-octane second LP in ‘Romance’. From the first play, the level of financial investment and industry hopes attached to this project feel tangible.

Written by: Milly McMahon | Date: Tuesday, 17 December 2019

 
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