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Joni Mitchell
Blue

Blue by Joni Mitchell is a masterpiece. Originally released in 1971, the album was inspired by travel, it was partly written on her travels around Europe, and her ailing relationship with Graham Nash. Joni ended the relationship whilst writing the album. An absolute must have for any collection. LP on Reprise....view item »

Kath Bloom & Loren Connors
Restless Faithful Desperate

Alternative folk duo Kath Bloom and Loren (MazzaCane) Conners had quite a prolific stint in the 80s. Now the kind folk at Chapter Music are reissuing their classic album Restless Faithful Desperate, filled with gentle acoustic folk. The duo's heartfelt songs have influenced a fair share of artists, includi...view item »

Anna St. Louis
If Only There Was A River

Anna St. Louis’s voice is not powerful. Nor is it impressive. It’s not even particularly reliable - the eleven tracks of If Only There Was A River find her frequently sliding between notes to find pitch. However, all of this stuff just adds fuel to the fire of David Byrne’s old adage t...view item »

Maki Asakawa
Maki Asakawa

Maki Asakawa was essentially a jazz and blues singer - but with a difference: Imagine Nina Simone, Bessie Smith and Billie Holiday with a bit of Nico, experimental big band and psychedelic sitar wig-outs. This eponymous compilation gathers together the best of h...view item »

Suzanne Menzel
Goodbyes and Beginnings

1981 synth-pop from Denmark, in the form of the one and only album by Suzanne Menzel, self-released at the time and hard to find since then. Klaus Schonning contributes new agey electronic backing to ...view item »

Various
Hillbillies In Hell: Volume 777

Hillbillies In Hell: Volume 777 is a collection of songs from Nashville’s more troubled singer-songwriters. It features 16 rare cuts with the likes of Hank Williams, Bobby Griggs and Durwood Daily facing their demons and baring the depths of their souls for your delectation. Vinyl LP, limi...view item »

Magnolia Electric Co
Fading Trails

JASON MOLINA has another album out. Yup, after the storm away success of Let Me Go his MAGNOLIA ELECTRIC CO beat combo are trying to woo me with the new album called Fading Trails. Initially it's not as good as the last album nor is it as good as the Songs Ohia stuff.... mainly cos of the naff...view item »

Mark Lanegan & Duke Garwood
With Animals

Mark Lanegan - former Screaming Tree, part-time Queen of the Stone Age - teams up with his old chum Duke Garwood for their second LP in a half-decade (though they’ve worked on some stuff together in between). Lanegan’s vocal performance on With Animals is ro...view item »

The Walker Brothers
Nite Flights

My introduction to Scott Walker was a quite recent TV showing of Scott Walker: 30th Century Man documentary. I got to see the documentary two times, and both showings got me deeper and deeper into the world of Walker. I've been an electronic dance music DJ for over two decades, concentrating mainly in techno, I...view item »

Immigrant
The Empress

The Empress is the 16th album by Scottish singer-songwriter Immigrant. He has previously released albums through Fence Records, Chaffinch Records, Brian Records and Oscarson, and through his own imprint. The special editions of The Empress are being released exclusively through Norman Records prior to a standard release later in the year...view item »

Iron & Wine
Weed Garden

Sam Beam & co return as Iron & Wine to follow up their Grammy-nominated LP released in early 2018, 'Beast Epic'. Weed Garden is a collection of songs to complement the aforementioned record; its writing has been an evolving process the past three years. The six-song album was a smaller but significant part of th...view item »

Tomberlin
At Weddings

Sarah Beth Tomberlin is the daughter of a pastor, and attended a Christian school before dropping out. Through the plaintive folk of At Weddings, she searches for an identity distinct from her faith. At the same time the album is inspired by Christian music, creating a profound tension at her music's heart....view item »

Jeff Buckley
Grace

Despite a number of archival and live albums, Grace was the only full studio album released by Jeff Buckley. Still, high points of the singer-songwriter's celebrated but tragically short career - 'Last Goodbye', 'Hallelujah', 'Lover, You Should Have Come Over' - were part of the collection, and deservedly so....view item »

Bob Dylan
Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan is Bob Dylan’s first ever album, released way back in 1962 when no-one knew who this cat was (imagine that?!?). The tracklisting is mostly made up of traditional folk songs, with just two originals, meaning that you can really hear Dylan emerging from the folk tradition that made him. Vi...view item »

Nick Drake
Pink Moon

Pretty much one of the most beautiful albums ever made. Just Nick, his ever fluid guitar playing, husky voice and on one track, a slither of piano. Listen to it late at night, on the headphones and admire the wonderful natural way the album was recorded. The songs are exquisite, odd at times, soothing at others. To me, the best Nick Drake album ...view item »

Greg Sage
Straight Ahead

This album by Greg Sage is notable for being the one that persuaded J. Mascis that the acoustic guitar was a thing worth existing, and Straight Ahead is worth your attention for that alone. Though even if you could care less about Dinosaur Jr, you should check it out on its own merit, a...view item »

Jack Rose
Luck In The Valley

It's obviously a more than a little heartbreaking to think of Jack Rose's death coming just before his debut for a bigger label (who've gone the extra mile with a gorgeous sleeve here, as it goes), one which sounds to me like a conscious summation of what he's done so far with a view perhaps to clearing the way before pushing on to the next stage o...view item »

Juanita Stein
Until The Lights Fade

Until The Lights Fade is the sophomore long-player from Howling Bells and former Waikiki vocalist and guitarist, Juanita Stein. Musically the album stays true to her 2017 solo debut, America, whilst lyrically its subjects and musings are closer to Stein, both geog...view item »

Various
Birth/Work/Death: Work, Money and Status in Country Music (1950-1970)

Birth/Work/Death: Work, Money And Status In Country Music 1950-1970 over 18 rare tracks,  mostly originally pressed and distributed in handfuls, tell tales of toil, hardship and occasionally joy, from the darkness of mining, the depressing notion of factory work to travelling along sun-scorched highways. Vinyl LP, limited to 500 copies with...view item »

39th & The Nortons
Mourning Waltz

Straight outta Paris come 39th & The Nortons, led by enthusiastic band creator Nick Wheeldon with a mission to resurrect the sixties in sonic form. Specifically, the group are after that lovely overlap between psychedelic guitars and organs, folky songcraft, and symphonic sweep. Mourning Waltz is re...view item »

Laura Gibson
Goners

Goners is Laura Gibson’s fifth album, but her first after having completed an MFA in writing, which brings a particular mature depth to her lyrics, which explore strange and dark feelings of grief and loss. These songs are brought into being by a band that includes Dan Hunt and Dave Depper...view item »

Neil Young
This Note's For You

I know that this is an unfashionable opinion, but this particular Norman Records™ description writer thinks that Neil Young did his best work in the 1980’s. Albums like Trans and Everybody’s Rockin’ are either some of the all-time great musical shitposts, visionary records that simultane...view item »

Neil Young
Hawks & Doves

No, Hawks & Doves is nothing to do with Cheshire rockers Doves. How could it be, given that, as it was first released in 1980, the members of Doves would have all still have been at primary school? Bet you wish you’d thought that through before opening your mouth and embarrassing yourself… Anyway, this ...view item »

Kathryn Joseph
Tell My Lover

Single Tell My Lover on 7” from Scottish indie folk singer/songwriter Kathryn Joseph, whose debut LP won the Scottish Album of the Year award back in 2015. A tender and sensitive song with all the fragile power of Joseph’s otherworldly vocals and gentle melodies. Out o...view item »

Me and My Kites
Like A Dream Back Then

Hippies. Your enjoyment of this record will depend quite a lot on your tolerance for hippies. Looking at the sleeve I thought it was some kind of ‘60s reissue but no, this quartet of skinny-dipping, flower-wreathing Swedes actually recorded this album just last year. The back cover even has an old-style photo collage of them. “It&rsq...view item »

Me and My Kites
Is it Real or is it Made?

Second album from Me and My Kites, a flighty collection of songs that breeze past the listener so laden with summer that you could catch hayfever. Is It Real Or Is It Made? was recorded in Norway, and there is, from time to time, an audibly Scandinavian touch to the vocals. LP released by Porcelain Records....view item »

Neil & Liam Finn
Lightsleeper

Nice family get together here as new Fleetwood Mac guy Neil Finn (Crowded House etc) teams up with son Liam Finn. Mum is on here as well as is Liam's brother Elroy and weird uncles Connan Mockasin and Mick Fleetwood also put in appearances.  No sign of Tim Finn but there's ...view item »

Oh Pep!
I Wasn't Only Thinking About You…

ATO Records (Alabama Shakes, Hurray For The Riff Raff) drop the sophomore LP from Australian twosome Oh Pep!. I Wasn’t Only Thinking About You is a record full of nice, well-crafted ditties, a few of which also come equipped with festival-friendly choruses. Think ...view item »

Buck Curran
Morning Haikus, Afternoon Ragas

Nothing like a cup of lapsang souchong and Morning Haikus, Afternoon Ragas to get you through a quiet evening. Painting quiet spaces with sparse guitar tones, Buck Curran&r...view item »

Glenn Jones
The Giant Who Ate Himself And Other New Works For 6 & 12 String Guitar

With a title I could well imagine existing as a cautionary yet inspiring tale for young children, possibly animated by Studio Ghibli (disclaimer: before we're sued, it wasn't) The Giant Who Ate Himself - And Other New Works For 6 & 12 String Guitar is a beautifully crafted recording by Glenn Jones. It's something to...view item »

Tunng
Songs You Make At Night

Rather like The Great Conjunction in The Dark Crystal, Tunng’s shifting personnel have aligned once again, for the first time in many years, just as they were at the outset.. I remember them back in 2007 as shaggy-haired, semi-electronic Brit-folksters, but something’s definitely happened in the intervening ...view item »

Micah P. Hinson
When I Shoot At You With Arrows, I Will Shoot To Destroy You

Strong words from Texas native Micah P. Hinson, although his album seems to be on target if you're big into distorted singer-songwriter stuff with a retro early 2000s feel. When I Shoot at You With Arrows, I Will Shoot to Destroy You is the 4th album by the man who considers Obama to be 'the Murderer of the American Dre...view item »

Eliza Shaddad
Future

Eliza Shaddad has threatened an LP for a while now. In Future she's come through with a debut full-length for Beatnik Creative that makes good on the promise of her early EPs. Shaddad confesses to listening to plenty of Hole and Portishead in the run up to ...view item »

Charlene Soraia
Where's My Tribe

Music just like they (apparently) used to make it. Charlene Soraia recorded Where’s My Tribe at home in her flat, using just voice and guitar and generally using just the first take. Consequently these are songs with a great feeling of intimacy and directness, although they also sound impressively accomplished for...view item »

Lindsay Clark
Crystalline

Begat and raised in the Sierra Nevada mountains and now resident of Portland, Oregon, subtle songwriter and nature-lover Lindsay Clark returns with her fourth album. Crystalline focuses on highly delicate, nuanced songwriting. Layered vocals, piano, flute, clarinet, piano and guitar quietly articulate Clark & co's e...view item »

Cult Party
And Then There Was This Sound

Sad hits for all the family (lest there are happy members of it), it's the brand new record by not-at-all-super stars Cult Party! This wonderful band may have been a solitary, self-preserving bedroom band once upon a time, but on And Then There Was This Sound songwriter Leo Robinson opens up his sounds wi...view item »

Two Medicine
Astropsychosis

Peaceful psychedelic rock is a genre underrepresented in between all the endless distorted guitar solos we get to listen to here at Norman HQ. Two Medicine, created by Paul Alexander from indie/psych rockers Midlake, are taking a much more poppy approach to psychedelia. Named after a part of Glacier National Par...view item »

Sorrow
Under The Yew Possessed

Night School have snapped up the re-release rights to Sorrow’s 1993 LP Under The Yew Possessed. A neo-folk outfit centred around husband and wife duo Rose McDowall and Robert Lee, the band serve up some nice ethereal jangles here atop which McDowall coos in a tranquil manner. It’s like a mor...view item »

Vashti Bunyan
Just Another Diamond Day

Just Another Diamond Day by Vashti Bunyan, released in 1970, is notable for being a gentle folk classic, but also for being her only album until 2005’s Lookaftering. The album tells the tell of the time she left civilisation to join Donovan’s community of creative hippy types in the Hebrides. It was ...view item »

Anna von Hausswolff
Ceremony

As someone once said: “Writing about music is like dancing about architecture—it’s really a stupid thing to want to do.” Sure, I can say 'Ceremony' is powerful, incendiary, deep, dark, creepy, atmospheric, panoramic, epic...and indeed all these adjectives fit it well, but eventually words can't really describe the beauty ...view item »

King Creosote And Jon Hopkins
Diamond Mine

Having tuned in out of guilt to the Radcliffe and Maconie show the other night following its Radio 2 cancellation (preposterous), I was reminded of King Creosote's 'You've No Clue Do You' which is a fine slice of pop, I'd forgotten how near the mainstream he'd reached at one point. So I was interested to hear this collaboration with hardest work...view item »

Giant Sand
Returns To Valley Of Rain

Giant Sand’s debut album,Valley Of Rain was originally released in 1985, although it was recorded some two years earlier. The band had started to play the songs on tour again, which made them think re-recording the album would be a good idea. They got the original line-up back together, augmented by two newer members and s...view item »

F.J. McMahon
Spirit Of The Golden Juice

What a lovely surprise to find this in the ‘To Be Reviewed’ box today! Had Clint not been away, I’m pretty sure he would have eaten this up, digested it and written some beautiful words about it; as it is, you have me. This album is beautiful, by the way. Originally released at the tail end of th...view item »

Ed Harcourt
Time of Dust

Since the mid-2000s, with hindsight, a relatively prolific period, Ed Harcourt’s albums have been a little while in coming. Time Of Dust is his new mini album and follows on from 2013’s piano and vocal triumph, Back To The Woods. Time Of Dust is somewhat darker than previous recordings. Har...view item »

Tom Waits
Nighthawks At The Diner

Waits’ third album is arguably the pinnacle of his early beatnik barfly persona. Taking a different approach to his more mannered previous albums, the 1975 LP was recorded live in a pseudo small club setup. It’s jazzy and deceptively loose and boozy, though Tom knows exactly what he’s doing, whether delivering jokey banter or v...view item »

Jim O'Rourke
Insignificance

“Insignificance” may well be Jim O’Rourke’s best album. It opens with the magnificent “All Down Hill From Here” which has the crunchy guitars of “Monster”-era REM but O’Rourke’s vocal is much less intense than what Michael Stipe would have delivered. Then there’s the gentle musica...view item »

Richard Ashcroft
Natural Rebel

I mean will you just look at him. This 'natural rebel' was of course best known for being the frontman of the Verve until they multi imploded. "My strongest set of songs to date" says Ashcroft about his latest collection which is not a hard achievement I suppose given the quality or lack of seen in his solo career to date. ...view item »

A. Savage
Thawing Dawn

A.Savage is the new name for the Parquet Courts singer who here goes down the solo route inviting such friends as folks from Woods and Ultimate Painting to help him out. We're expecting an album which tries to get inside the heart of love by means of Leonard Cohen...view item »

Nick Drake
Bryter Layter

Bryter Layter should obviously be in your record collection, and luckily you don’t have to spend £1,000,000 on a crackly old dog of a copy anymore. Island have faithfully remastered and reissued this beautiful thing from the (almost) original master tapes, and packaged it so it’s just like how your Dad would have bough...view item »

Madisen Ward and the Mama Bear
The Radio Winners

A mother-and-son duo here, which isn’t something you see every day. Mama Bear - the mum of the duo, if that wasn’t obvious enough - strums a nice guitar while her handsome son Madisen Ward intones in a manner similar to Ray LaMontagne and Iron & Wine. New EP ...view item »

Elisa Ambrogio
The Immoralist

Elisa Ambrogio is a principle member of the most uncaring noise rock band of all time, Magik Markers -- who released the joyfully abstract and feedback-taunting 'I Trust My Guitar, Etc.' -- and also makes an awful mess in her own right. 'The Immortalist' actually relents a little bit, offering pop structure to the razor-sharp tones of Magik Mark...view item »

Jess Sah Bi & Peter One
Our Garden Needs Its Flowers

An altogether calmer release than we’ve come to expect from Awesome Tapes From Africa here. Jess Sah Bi & Peter One were a duo famous throughout West Africa in the 1980s. Combining the songwriting techniques of their native Ivory Coast with American and British folk styles, they hit upon a great formul...view item »

Conner Youngblood
Cheyenne

After turning some heads with 2016 EP The Generation of Lift, Texan singer-songwriter Conner Youngblood comes through with his debut LP on Counter Records. Cheyenne shares a few tracks with TGoL, and the Bon Iver-meets-Sufjan Stevens vibe of that relea...view item »

The Cradle
Bag Of Holding

What a fine collection of bric-a-brac: bones, miscellaneous netting and shards of rusty metal. What more could you ever ask for? Bag Of Holding is the latest release from The Cradle. Here are nine tracks glued together with all manor of musical elements from pop to orchestral. Available on vinyl LP and released on NNA T...view item »

Madeline Kenney
Perfect Shapes

Perfect Pitchfork-ready indie dreaming here from Madeline Kenney who has had her latest produced by Jenn Wasner of Wye Oak. She's previously been compared with Liz Phair and has worked extensively with Chaz Bear (Toro Y Moi). She's also getting ready to tour the UK and Europe just as s...view item »

The Other Years
The Other Years

Kentucky duo The Other Years consists of Anna Krippenstapel (Joan Shelley, Freakwater) on fiddle and Heather Summers on guitar and banjo, with both singing. Their self-titled debut offers a charming and haunting suite of original songs alongside Michael Hurley’s ‘Wil...view item »

Silver Jews
American Water

Is American Water different from UK water?  Find out by buying the 20 year re-issue of this classic album by Silver Jews. Hear David Berman's lyrical poise set to a half speed master for extra good sound. Wallow in the gentle alt rock of tracks like 'Honk If You're Horny' and 'Sent in the Clouds'. Where is he by the way? We...view item »

Elephant Micah
Where In Our Woods

Southern Indiana singer-songwriter Elephant Micah aka Joseph O’Connell releases his 15th album on LP and CD via Western Vinyl. It’s a typically assured effort from the Americana veteran, utilising minimal instrumentation and O’Connell’s smoothly engaging voice to deliver a compelling form of countrified m...view item »

Phosphorescent
Live At The Music Hall

Taking inspiration from Bob Dylan’s Hard Rain, Matthew Houck decided for the live Phosphorescent album, rather than churn out a "greatest hits live" collection that he would show the songs in a new light, demonstrating how his songs have an amorphous quality,and how they have been able to develop ...view item »

Various
Paradise: The Sound Of Ivor Raymonde

Not many people are in the position to release records by their dad but head Bella Union honcho Simon Raymonde had a most unusual childhood. From seeing Scott Walker in his back garden to watching dad on 'Hancock's Half Hour' the boy didn't realise at the time the range and influence of his dad. But now he does and here is a lov...view item »

Low
The Invisible Way

There is no such thing as a bad Low album, just good, very good and mediocre. Their last effort ‘C’mon‘ had a few killer songs but also a fair few forgettable ones. It seems since the wild experimentation of the very good ‘Drums and Guns’ they have retreated into a safe Low-shaped ho...view item »

Iron and Wine
Beast Epic

Ol’ big beard Sam Beam is back with a record that he says harks back to his earlier works such as ‘The Creek Drank the Cradle’. This brings Beam’s work a full circle as he seems to be rediscovering the simplicity that made those records such hushed delights. This his his 5th album and contains the type...view item »

Jose Gonzalez
In Our Nature

Now that sensitive plucker Jose Gonzalez with his new album 'In Our Nature'. Its pretty and distinctive sounding from the the tasty Swede with vocals and guitar dancing together with evocative beauty. He's got a great sense of rhythm that comes through his playing and vocal delivery that sets him apart from his many singer songwriter contemporaries...view item »

Death Vessel
Island Intervals

Sub Pop, eh. You used to know what to expect from these guys, not so much any more. I'll be honest with you, I was hoping this would be a rock album. This Death Vessels album is full of wistful sweeping post-rocky pop with breathy girl vocals and a boy who sings like Jonsi from Sigur Ros...view item »

Mikaela Davis
Delivery

After self-releasing for a few years, New York harpist/pianist/singer/songwriter/general talent Mikaela Davis has been snapped up by Rounder Records. Delivery, her first LP for the esteemed Massachusetts imprint, is a collection that balances influences from AM rock, 80s pop and a little smidgen of...view item »

Various
The Self Preservation Society

Throwback artisans ECC Records have spent three years curating this compilation. They’ve taken standards from The Best Era For Music - ‘Sunshine Of Your Love’, ‘White Rabbit’, ‘Kashmir’ and so forth - and got a load of young pretenders to ‘update them’, so to speak. The resul...view item »

Fotheringay
Fotheringay

Fotheringay were the band that Sandy Denny formed with husband, Trevor Lucas following her stint with folk-rock trailblazers Fairport Convention. The band, for their 1970 eponymous debut, featured Jerry Donahue on guitar. The album features 4 Sandy Denny-penned ...view item »

Bert Jansch
L.A. Turnaround

As a glance at the album title might lead you to guess, L.A. Turnaround was one of the albums that grew out of the time that Scottish folk troubadour Bert Jansch spent in America, adding a certain twist to Jansch’s formerly rather traditional sound. This reissue presents the original 1974 album al...view item »

Odetta Hartman
Old Rockhounds Never Die

Odetta Hartman’s sound is an odd mish-mash of stuff. It’s rooted in post-blues styles like rockabilly, 50s r ‘n’ b, country-rock and soul, but there’s also influences cropping up on Old Rockhounds Never Die from genres as diverse as psychtronica and future-boogie. It makes the fifteen track...view item »

Cursive
Vitriola

Emo punks Cursive have passed the time since their inception writing about the difficulties of settling down and keeping the love you've found. Tim Kasher has effectively made it his life's work to expose, via shouting, the stresses of domestic living, and has also made some great, weird concept albums about relat...view item »

Owl John
Owl John

Owl John is the alias of Scott Hutchison, the songwriter, vocalist and all-round principle guy for Scottish indie rock band Frightened Rabbit. On his first solo record, he enlisted help from bandmate Andy Monaghan and friend Simon Liddel (Olympic Swimmers) in the production department, splitting his time between the Isle of Mull and the Sta...view item »

MayMay
Mountains Hills Plateaus and Plains

So nice, isn’t it, this music and living stuff? According to MayMay, the answer to that rhetorical question is a resounding yes: it’s lovely, everything’s beautiful where they are, and when you’re cold you can just be inside with a jumper on. Laurel Simmons’ ambient pop circles around a mix of twanging guitar, Frahm...view item »

Matt Elliott
Drinking Songs

Matt Elliott likes a drink. I've been informed of this by Leeds indie funsters Hood who are old mates of his & I've heard a couple of really amusing stories I can tell yer. He likes a drop of the demon booze so much in fact he's entitled his latest beautifully packaged CD 'Drinking Songs'. Think this is one for all you mournfu...view item »

Delphine Dora & Sophie Cooper
Divine Ekstasys

Sophie Cooper continues her high-busyness, high-quality streak with a further collaboration with improvising French singer and pianist Delphine Dora, developed in 2016. Divine Ekstasys...view item »

Andrew Combs
5 Covers & A Song

This new EP from Nashville singer-songwriter Andrew Combs does what it says on the tin. 5 Covers - of tracks by The Strokes...view item »

Yawning Chasm
Songs from Blue House

Yawning Chasm claim that they recorded the bulk of new cassette Songs From Blue House in a shed during a storm. When you listen to this thing you start to believe them. The songs here are folk, more or less, but with the quiet charm that characterises the best bedroom indie. The group frequently back up their acoustic-a...view item »

Laura Veirs
Carbon Glacier

Oh I loved this album when I was a much younger man than I am now. 2004 in fact. I'm sure it saw me through some bleak winter or other. This was Laura Veirs breakout record and was the point where her lush and swoon-some style of icy songs really took hold. You can literally smell the Pacific North West on this collection. First...view item »

Lambchop
What Another Man Spills

20th anniversary vinyl edition of the album that preceded their all time classic 'Nixon'. 'What Another Man Spills' consists mainly of Kurt Wagner originals but with a handful of covers most notably a couple by FM Cornog of East River Pipe. Now two decades on we get a remastered re-press with liner notes by Mr Wagner himself.&nb...view item »

Brigid Mae Power
The Two Worlds

Irish artist Birgid Mae Power follows up her 2016 self-titled LP with The Two Worlds. Her expressive voice, gently warbling with more than a little Americana, could as well be likened to Grace Slick as to Elizabeth Fraser, although neither capture her entirely. On the excellent lead sin...view item »

Stuart A. Staples
Arrhythmia

Now resembling a kind of cross between Tosh Lines and Frank Burnside (both formerly of the Bill), Stuart Staples takes a break from Tindersticks to make his first solo LP in 13 years. The album has an unusual structure consisting of four songs but with one clocking in at thirty minutes in length, Staples has cr...view item »

Bonnie 'Prince' Billy
Wolf of the Cosmos

Bonnie 'Prince' Billy has always been of particular interest to me - not because of his music - but because of his name. Why exactly does he need to claim to the 'Prince' status? Is he actually a prince? Or is he actually an unnecessary ego? Who knows. Either (or neither) way, Wolf of the Cosmos is available on vinyl LP and CD on Domino. ...view item »

Tom Waits
Foreign Affairs

1977’s Foreign Affairs is Tom Waits at his most big budget and nostalgically cinematic. The filmic feel is exemplified by the forties style epic Potter’s Field and Bette Midler duet I Never Talk to Strangers. It's heavily string and brass laden when the singer’s not mostly alone at the piano, a...view item »

Iron and Wine
The Shepherd's Dog

While Sam Beam (aka Iron and Wine) has gone in a different direction from his magnum opus, The Creek Drank the Cradle, he's decided to go back to some basics on The Shepherd's Dog. It has a perfect mixture of traditional folky Sam Beam, such as on "Resurrection Fern" where it almost borders on country music, with haunting new Sam Beam, especiall...view item »

St. Vincent
Marry Me

It's nice to know that Annie Clarke (St. Vincent) would go to the humble beginnings of Marry Me to the critically lauded Strange Mercy and follow that with the commercially successful self-titled. I went through St Vincent's back catalogue backwards and expected this album to be a fairly "cute" affair with simple acoustic pop songs and playful m...view item »

Keston Cobblers Club
Almost Home

A follow up to their 2015 critically acclaimed album, Almost Home is the latest release from Keston Cobblers Club. A genuine show of warmth and community based music that combines folk with country, paired with a modern ‘poppy’ feel to it; catchy lyrics and dazzling musicianship is shown on this reco...view item »

Marissa Nadler
Strangers

Marissa Nadler’s music tends to be smooth, dark and dramatic: like an image reflected in the shiny black surface of a grand piano. Strangers finds Nadler writing characters, characters who often find themselves in surreal scena...view item »

Jon Hopkins
Insides

Much like a giant robot and/or alien standing relentlessly on two buildings at the same time, Jon Hopkins manages to straddle the not-so fine lines between modern classical, IDM and dubstep/bassy nonsense with incredible panache. Opener 'The Wider Sun' is a good place to start to achieve the first of those three...view item »

David Bowie
★ (Blackstar)

David Bowie has another new album out! The mysteriously titled ★, which is less mysteriously known as Blackstar is his first new material since the weird single Sue (or in a Season of Crime) in 2014 and first album since the brilliant The Next Day in 2013. ★ is available on CD and on vinyl wit...view item »

Bill Callahan
Dream River

I was thinking this morning: "Why don’t I own more Bill Callahan records?"   I tend to always like what I hear of him (certainly post-Smog, who didn’t always do it for me). For the uninitiated, he has a rich, chocolate-brown voice and sings sad, slow laments which could eventually see him be...view item »

Bon Iver
For Emma, Forever Ago

For Emma, Forever Ago is the 2007 debut album by Bon Iver, who at the time consisted solely of Justin Vernon. After his band DeYarmond Edison split, and he’d suffered a bout of serious illness, he set off for a cabin in the woods to write and record the album. The resulting recording is no...view item »

King Krule
6 Feet Beneath The Moon

Looking somewhat like my little brother aged six and armed with a voice something like a Billy Bragg who has the slathering, jowely mouth of a bloodhound, King Krule is certainly a distinctive artist and one who will divide opinion. He has slowly unfurled his talents over the...view item »

St. Vincent
Strange Mercy

I don't know about you but I don't trust anyone with curly hair. From Leo Sayer to Malcolm McLaren, you have to give them a very, very wide berth. St Vincent is a lady from New York who once toured with Sufjan Stevens, a man I had a bizarre dream about last night where he turned out to...view item »

Colin Stetson
New History Warfare Vol.2: Judges

You can count on one finger the number of good uses of the saxophone in long and varied history of music. The coda to 'Will You' by Hazel O' Connor notwithstanding, the instrument that was invented by mistake has usually turned up on everything horrible in the world from free jazz skronk to Patrick Wolf's latest mess. In the 1970's even keen sax...view item »

Devendra Banhart
Cripple Crow

The music on the CD is pretty good. He's definitely cut off all the strange obtuse angles and mad squawks of his earlier records and so this is pretty straight down the middle folk stuff that sounds just like Tyrannosaurus Rex with added string sections here and there The guy obviously has a skip full of talent and this CD is definitely...view item »

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