Joan As Policewoman – Damned Devotion
Joan Wasser returns to the darker, sensual sound of her celebrated early releases. Stripped-back soul and funk arrangements are always likely to invite accusations of blandness but not here –there’s an edge to this album and a quality to Wasser's voice that makes these songs outstanding.
Joan As Police Woman – Tell Me
Franz Ferdinand – Always Ascending
The departure of guitarist Nick McCarthy might have suggested that the wheels were coming off the juggernaut but nothing could be further from the truth, judging from an initial listen to this invigorating album. They have demonstrably benefited from their recent FFS collaboration with the Mael brothers and co-opting Julian Corrie (aka Miaoux Miaoux) as McCarthy's replacement gives them texture and squelchy synths in abundance. There are other obvious art rock influences but grand larceny it ain't and the album has pop hooks to burn.
Franz Ferdinand – Feel The Love Go
Ezra Furman – Transangelic Exodus
Seventh album from Furman will undoubtedly see him firmly wedged in the end of year highlights with this stupendous road trip-style odyssey exploring the travails of a gay couple on the run after one of them has an illegal operation to become an angel. The album has its roots in early seventies – imagine what Furman describes as a "queer outlaw saga" combining the storytelling talents of Lou Reed and Bruce Springsteen and you'll only be half way there.
Ezra Furman – Love You So Bad
Factory Floor – Heart Of Data/Babel Heart Of Data
Factory Floor were originally commissioned by London’s Science Museum to write a new musical arrangement for Fritz Lang’s 1927 silent classic Metropolis. This two-track 12in features two cues from the score.
Factory Floor – Metropolis pt4
Brigid Mae Power – The Two Worlds
Produced by Erased Tapes stalwart Peter Broderick, Q Magazine listed Power's album as a "Top Tip" for 2018. The droning folk arrangement of the sadly topical first single Don't Shut Me Up (Politely) is reminiscent of Mazzy Star.
Brigid Mae Power – Don't Shut Me Up (Politely)
This week's selection is by Michael Moloney, aka llamalpaca from the vinyl-only record and design store, Chameleon, with new release additions by The Landlord.
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This is only a selection, not a catalogue of releases. Feel free to recommend more and comment below.