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Album review

Calvin Harris

(Columbia)

‘Acceptable in the 80s’ is catchy, for sure. In fact, quite ridiculously so. And we’re inclined to think that people who deny its greatness are sad and lonely people who listen to moody, introspective music all the time and scowl at strangers in the street. It’s good fun.



Indiana Gregg

Woman at Work (gr8 pop)

It might be just me, but I have a problem with musicians who, when speaking about their music and its role, put too much emphasis on the maybe difficult circumstances of their life.



Mint Royale

Pop Is… (Faith & Hope)

Best Of albums are usually released about a month before Christmas. Although you could just as well imagine a summertime release for Mint Royale’s greatest hits because here we’ve got a case which definitely falls into the ‘summer music’ category.



Spraydog

Karate Summer Camp (Ferric Mordant)

Having recently celebrated their 10th anniversary as a band and being able to look back on two Peel sessions, four albums and about eight singles, Newcastle outfit Spraydog “stumbled and bumbled their way out of the Newcastle Riot Girl / Indie scene at a time when it all seemed like witchcraft”



The Twilight Sad

Fourteen Autumns And Fifteen Winters (Fat Cat)

As I hurriedly put this CD player, all sorts of thoughts were running through my head, such as would it be as good as I hoped or as I had been told it was. To be completely honest, I knew within 2 and a half minutes that this would be one of my albums of […]



The Vincent Black Shadow

Fear Is In The Water (Bodog)

The first thing that struck me about this album was just how great vocalist Cassandra Ford’s voice is. It’s one of these voices that can either sit on top of the material, adding a ghostly, ethereal quality to it, or else, pile-drive the song right through your stereo, often all in the same song.



The Maccabees

Colour It In (Polydor)

There’s nothing like a short, sharp album of spiky, guitar-driven pop songs to get you going, first thing in the morning.



The Nightingales

Out Of True (Iron Man)

With an insane racket of avalanching drums, twisting twin guitar lines and colloquial, droll social commentary, the casual music fan could be forgiven for reacting to opening track ‘Born Again In Birmingham’ by asking “Who? Mark E Smith?”



Rocket Uppercut

The Beautiful Tragedy (...)

Wading in like a two-headed slacker pop beast, Rocket Uppercut’s new album ‘The Beautiful Tragedy’ doffs its cap to the traditions of what being a young punk band entails, then headbutts you and spraypaints your backpack.



Battles

Mirrored (Warp)

Think The Mars Volta are a ‘bit poppy’ for you now? Well, If you do, in all your deranged earlobe glory, get your hands on this, the new album from barmy prog perverts Battles.