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City Slang Vinyl, CD & tapes from this label at Norman Records

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White Denim

Imagine, if you will, a psych rock band who also enjoy the two greatest genres to grace our green planet: jazz and prog rock. Intending absolutely zero sarcasm with my last remark, I can now inform you that you need not imagine, as White Denim exist, ready-made, for your pleasure. They're back after a small time a...view item »

Stuart A. Staples

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 »

Our Love

Caribou has had varied career since his early days trading under the Manitoba moniker. I remain the only person on earth still unconvinced by the ‘Swim’ album. In fact when I heard the promo, I stated loudly and to no-one in particular that his career was “over”. I’m open to the sugg...view item »

Anna von Hausswolff
Dead Magic

On this day of fervent and unforgiving snow, it’s nice to see an Anna von Hausswolff record hiding under my behemoth of things to review. Hausswolff nailed her low-key gothica into the walls of a grand cathedral on ‘The Miraculous’, centering her organ around eerie instrumentation for an unrelenting tour de force. She comes bac...view item »


Imarhan are one of the premier bands within the desert blues world of Tuareg music, and Temet, their second album, finds them muscling up on their funkier, fuzzier, even disco sides. Both the CD and the vinyl edition of Temet come with a free City Slang label sampler CD (but only while stocks last…)...view item »

Son Lux
Brighter Wounds

If you ever wanted the ripples rocking the boat of Son Lux’s music to push it into capsize… may I kindly present ‘Brighter Wounds’ to you? It bays with the tension of a Perfume Genius record, given the grit and wobble of Xiu Xiu and the squelchy pantomime...view item »

The Thread That Keeps Us

Although Calexico once had their poster placed pride of place above my toilet it was more because I liked the image rather than their music. They are one of those groups who plod along effectively but you'll never get so much as a slither of excitement of them. Their desert blues has aged nicely though and 'The Thread that Keeps Us' opens strong...view item »


It's all about the 80s these days and anyone who is anyone is leaping on the bandwagon. We know about John Maus, and even Ought and now these three members of Efterklang. It's all big synths and 'serious' vocals. You know the thing, Jon &am...view item »


Taking John Cage’s Prepared piano into completely new fields by creating software and mechanisms to turn a grand piano into a programmable and playable drum machine basically. Whilst Erol Sarp manipulates and triggers plucks scrapes and hits of various parts of the piano Lukas Vogel actual...view item »

Cristobal And The Sea

The press release talks of this album taking the listener into an "alternate reality where humans care for each other and the environment". So either buy this album or vote for a Labour government to make that a reality.  They use things like Brazilian pop and Syrian musical influences to concoct their form of 'exotica' - an escapist realit...view item »

Exile In The Outer Ring

Having made some of the best indie pop detritus of the past decade but gone quite undeservedly under the radar, I’m going to be spending most of this week wondering why EMA didn’t get big. I guess I know why: her sound, deliberately uneven, has never developed into one thing, instead strange and unknowable, with both open ar...view item »


I'm annoyed. I hate it when musicians do this to me. After liking him for a bit years back, then strangely developing a phobia towards his increasingly clatterphonic psychedelic wall-of-sound approach till everything he did annoyed the bollocks off me, this new Caribou album has totally crept up behind us & stuck a banger up my arse. ...view item »


Review on post it note on front of CD: "Pretty Good" - Clint. Also read...."absolutely hands down the best album of the late summer/early autumn".  You need time to spare. Please do not listen to 30 second clips while tweeting. Once you start, you've gotta be in it for the long haul.  First up: there's an intro that takes ages ...view item »

Gold Panda
Good Luck and Do Your Best

It may be unseasonably cold and rainy outside but that doesn’t stop Gold Panda’s latest opus becoming my potential Album of the Summer. Now please don’t be upset with me but until recently I only judged Gold Panda’s music as a pleasant distraction. The sort of ok-tronica that runs along pleasantly in the background but ...view item »

Broken Social Scene
Hug of Thunder

There was never a more appropriate album title. Never once. Seven years out of the game, and several more out of relevance, you might have forgotten indie rock supergroup Broken Social Scene actually had any existing left to do; this record is a stellar reminder of their unfathomably loud grand gesture sound, their ability to turn ear-b...view item »

Minute Bodies: The Intimate World of F. Percy Smith

Directed by Tindersticks’ Stuart Staples Minute Bodies takes archival footage made by F. Percy Smith and sets it to a score created by Tindersticks and a series of guest musicians including Thomas Belhom, Christine Ott, Da...view item »

Life & Livin’ It

Ahmed Abdullahi Gallab / Jason Trammell has been a busy boy of late, what with touring his band Sinkane in 20 countries, and if that wasn’t enough he also led The Atomic Bomb band, playing the music of William Onyeabor (RIP) with the likes of ...view item »

Timber Timbre
Sincerely, Future Pollution

I'm not sure what has happened here. Their previous album 'Hot Dreams' was utterly superb throughout - an evocative wander through the back roads of Leonard Cohen, Richard Hawley, Portishead but the ball has either been dropped in a ...view item »

What If

Volker Bertelmann has been churning out his prepared piano works as Hauschka for well over a decade now, and after a dozen or more solo albums (I’ve actually lost count) he’s upping the ante once again. I haven’t even counted his many collaborative projects and film and documentary soundtracks. Anyway, here he has added pianola...view item »

sir Was
Digging A Tunnel

Gothenburg’s Joel Wästberg, AKA sir Was, delivers a debut album that supposedly takes its cues from D’Angelo, My Bloody Valentine, Liturgy and even Sly. Playing every instrument on the record (but for the bagpipe and harmonica), sir Was’ introspective debut arrives via alt mainstays City Slang, heralded by...view item »

Dear Reader
Day Fever

Cherilyn MacNeil’s ability to glitch and glam up ornate and baroque pop songs has been clear through the Dear Reader days, but it’s a total thesis on ‘Day Fever’, her band’s new record for City Slang. You’re telling me this record of horns and beats and cut-and-pasted electro-orchestration isn’t on ...view item »

Noga Erez
Off The Radar

Noga Erez is a Tel Aviv artist working with edgy electronic pop and heavyweight personal-political themes. Off The Radar is her debut album, and it ‘s glitchy-catchy aesthetics make it an obvious winner of a record from a bold talent. Off The Radar is released in CD and vinyl editions on City Slang....view item »

Fantezi Muzik

Trailblazers in their native Turkey for embracing safer-space politics and writing songs that foreground the struggle for transgender rights (‘Lubunya’, the 7th track on Fantezi Muzik), Jakuzi work righteous ideas into their woozy brand of synth-punk. There are shades of Brian Ferry and Berl...view item »


30 years of Kurt Wagner making music as Lambchop, now there’s a thing eh? He is still blessing us with his world-weary, rolled-tobacco voice and his witty, sardonic way with words. On ‘In Care Of 8675309’ Kurt’s voice is processed a little and sounds almost.. Hmm, auto-tuned? Yes, autotune, but in a gentle way; it works b...view item »

Nada Surf
Peaceful Ghosts (Live with Deutsches Filmorchester Babelsberg)

In 2015, Nada Surf got contacted by Austrian radio network FM4 with a tantalising offer: how’d you like to work with an orchestra? Peaceful Ghosts is a recording of the resulting concert with Deutsches Filmorchester Babelsberg, a successful synthesis of the alt-rockers tunes with fine orchestral g...view item »

Laura Gibson
Empire Builder

Sometimes I wish I could simply say “hey, this is a nice thing” and move on with my life as you investigate new developments in yours. ‘Empire Builder’ is one such time: Laura Gibson’s record just is an enjoyable record, and I would happily say no more, because I want to listen to it, so kindly go away. But...view item »

Nada Surf
You Know Who You Are

In these days of sleet and horrible things happening I’m increasingly inclined to listen to something a little bouncy to take me away from it all. Nada Surf aren’t by any stretch my favourite band but their streamlined American take on Teenage Fanclub’s sunny side up pop is hitting the spot...view item »

The Waiting Room

You have to have respect for a band whose singer knows he sounds exactly like Vic Reeves club singer and just carries on regardless. You also need to have respect for a band who want to be as French as Tindersticks do.   Their previous album ‘The Something Rain’ was in my mind one of their best efforts ...view item »

Junior Boys
Big Black Coat

I’m not sure if it’s the excitement of having a new label having shifted from Domino to City Slang but Junior Boys sound revitalised on the first couple of tracks on this debut for the latter imprint. Their textbook electronica and haunting vocals remain as intact as they’ve ever been but opener ‘You Say That&r...view item »

Royal Bangs
We Breed Champions

Royal Bangs are a five piece indie rock band from Knoxville Tennesse and 'We breed champions' is the bands first full length offering. This is proper american indie rock played with passion and style with excellent dynamic and rhythmic qualities. The riffage ain' t bad either!! Occasionally the band settler into a modest mouse-esq power ballad that...view item »

Mister Divine / Shadows

Nate Brenner plays in tUnE-yArDs’ band when they hit the road, but away from the band’s intense and rigorously rhythmic confines, he calls himself naytronix (really though) and makes rather comfortable lounge music -- the kind of easy listening sub-electronica you could find yourself sinking into an armchair with. “Mr Divine&rd...view item »

Mean Love

With roots in the rich musical history of North America as well as Africa, Sinkane provide a new perspective on what Soul Music is, and what it can be. Sinkane’s Mean Love rolls like an emotional, existential history of the artist. Ahmed Gallab has created an altogether unique compound of sound, stylistically nostalgic and ultram...view item »

Anna von Hausswolff

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 »

Mr. M

I had found myself losing interest in Lambchop after their “Is A Woman” album. Subsequent releases just weren’t doing anything for me. For some reason I decided to give “Mr. M” a punt. I was fortunate enough to find that it was somewhat of a return to form. “2B2” and &ldquo...view item »

Is a Woman

This was the at-the-time-disappointing follow up to the splendid Nixon album where Lambchop eschewed the floaty country soul and made what seemed to be a samey set of piano-led torch songs. Yet time has a way of changing things and Is a Woman is now seen as something of a modern classic and is another oddball b...view item »

Feast of Wire

Here's Calexico with a new album on City Slang. A band that everyone seems to like though I've never heard them before ever despite working in a record store for 2 years. Oh well. The fellers from these have been in all sorts of bands in the past like Giant Sand and...oh...i can't remem...view item »

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