Thom Yorke – Anima
The new nine-track album by the Radiohead frontman is an intriguing electronica odyssey of blips, loops, bassy shudders, dancey handclaps and Yorke's tortured voice - a melancholy dreamscape dystopia produced by band regular Nigel Godrich with a twist of Flying Lotus jazz improv. The outstanding tracks are Traffic and The Axe. It's also accompanied by a short film by Paul Thomas Anderson. Out on XL Recordings.
Thom Yorke – Traffic
The Black Keys – Let's Rock
As the title suggests, with a bit of irony, this is back-to-basics material that harks back to the earlier output of duo singer/guitarist Dan Auerbach and drummer Patrick Carney, and it's also the first since 2014's Turn Blue, and before that, the first without Dangermouse as producer since 2005's Magic Potion. Still this is indeed solid, rockin' catchy electric guitar stuff, recorded at Easy Eye Sound studio in Nashville, with best tracks including Eagle Birds, Tell Me Lies to the Stonesy single Lo/Hi. Out on Nonesuch.
The Black Keys – Lo/Hi
The Tallest Man On Earth – I Love You. It's a Fever Dream
Fifth album by Kristian Matsson, the singer-songwriter from Dalarna, Sweden, is a sensitive, rather beautiful album of sad songs about relationship struggles on tour, set in in hotel bars, on open roads, or beneath vast blue bowls of rural sky. It echoes elements of Dylan and particularly Sufjan Stevens, with added elements such as Hotel Bar's horn section, and bits of electronics on The Running Styles of New York. This is definitely going somewhere. Out on Rivers / Birds Records.
The Tallest Man On Earth – The Running Styles of New York
Molly – All That Could Ever Have Been
Debut album by Innsbruck-based Lars Andersson and Phillip Dornauer, a duo who have conjured up an alluring, spacious album of shoegaze, ambient, dreampop, a dash of prog, inspired by the likes of Galaxie 500, Low, and Sigur Rós. Alongside the title track, standouts include Weep, Gently Weep, and The Fountain of Youth. Out on Sonic Cathedral.
Molly – Weep, Gently Weep
House and Land – Across The Field
A fascinating second album of alternative folk by the North Carolina duo of Sarah Louise and Sally Anne Morgan, who mix banjo, guitar, fiddle, looped synths and drone sounds, sometimes in an almost psychedelic style, mining various ballads from Scotland and beyond, and bringing up stories of cruel misogyny with powerful delivery, with a whole new twist. Their work runs in a fine parallel to Our Native Daughters. Standout tracks include Two Sisters, Lady Carolina, Ca The Yowes, Cursed Soldier and Blacksmith. Out on Thrill Jockey.
House and Land – Two Sisters
This is Tunng – Magpie Bites and Other Cuts
Having released a new album earlier last summer, Songs You Make At Night, and with original member Sam Genders back in the team, is is a collection of rare gems and oddities released from 2004 to 2018 by the brilliant folktronica pioneers, including 7-inch singles, special editions, b-sides and hidden tracks. Out on Full Time Hobby.
Tunng – Heatwave
Body Type – EPs 1 and 2
Now available on vinyl and other formats, this is fusion of both EPs by the 80s-style Sydney indie four-piece who have been going since 2005, and now due a wider audience. Standout tracks include Palms from EP1, a dreamy pop dash of Lush and Alvvays, and Stingray from EP2 is a song about observing friends being stuck in relationship ruts. Out on Partisan Records/Inertia Music.
Body Type – Palms
75 Dollar Bill – I Was Real
More folk, this time from the New York instrumental duo of guitarist Che Chen and percussionist Rick Brown, who beats out his rhythms on wooden boxes, with supporting musicians including Cheryl Kingan on sax and Karen Waltuch on viola. Their music comes in many guises – touches of Timbuktu's Tinariwen, Moroccan, the mountains of Tennessee, New Orleans blues, and Indian devotional, there's much to enjoy and explore here with Che Chen's guitar playing especially impressive. Out on tak:til/Thin Wrist.
75 Dollar Bill – I Was Real
Kim Petras – Clarity
High-gloss bubblegum pop from the German singer sounds like she is an alternative Britney Spears or or Cristina Aguilera but there's an edge to all this pink and plastic, such as the confident, devil-may-care Blow It All, retro bop Sweet Spot, or the bassy Meet the Parents. The title track has a auto-tune sound that may make many wince, but the lyrics are strangely alluring - clarity, rarity, and parody slipped in very easily. Out on Bunhead.
Kim Petras – Personal Hell
This week's selection is by The Landlord.
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