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

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Bayonne
Drastic Measures

Well Bayonne's previous album Primitives was rather excellent indeed. For those not in the know it was a fantastic sprawl through a world slightly similar to that of Animal Collective or Grizzly Bear. Now the man who brought you all this Roger Sellers is back with a new work which we ar...view item »

Dan Mangan
More or Less

With his new album, More Or Less, Canadian songsmith, Dan Mangan has made music that is both more sparse and more direct than on previous albums. He was inspired to take this path by listening to classic albums such as Pink Moon by Nick Drake and Astral Weeks by Van Morrison during the recording...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 »

Jessica Pratt
Quiet Signs

This is Jessica Pratt's first recordings in a professional studio environment after a series of home recorded releases but, as the title suggests, she still makes quiet music. In fact more so as the home-fi film is removed to realise the clarity of her vision.  The latest in a series of the artist growing comfortable with h...view item »

Calexico
The Black Light (20th Anniversary Edition)

The Black Light by Calexico was originally released 20 years ago so it seems fitting that we now have a 20th anniversary version to savour. It was the band’s second album, but probably the first to get them noticed. Their mix of mariachi brass, flamenco, indie rock and jazz wrapped up in dusty Americana was seamlessly blen...view item »

White Denim
Performance

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 »

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 »

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 »

Caribou
Our Love

You reach a point in life where the question of how to stay at the top of your game looms; the only real solution being, you change the game. Our Love, the new album from Caribou, is the sound of Dan Snaith doing just that. Our Love is due October 6th on City Slang and is the sixth studio album from Caribou. The album features collabo...view item »

Anna von Hausswolff
Dead Magic

Anna Von Hausswolff’s discography is an intense collection by anyone’s standards, but on her fourth album, Dead Magic, she ramps up the intensity even more. 5 tracks over 47 minutes gives her time to suck you into her world and feel every second, every note and every word. Hausswolf uses the organ from...view item »

Imarhan
Temet

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

Fifth full-length album from Son Lux. Featuring single ‘Dream State,’ an atmospheric take on an indie pop anthem, albeit with Ryan Lott’s characteristically fragile vocals throughout. The New York and LA based trio call upon Rob Moose and DM Stith as collaborators. Available on indies-only coloured vinyl, on Ci...view item »

Calexico
The Thread That Keeps Us

The Thread That Keeps Us is album number 9 from Arizona duo Calexico. This album finds the band newly inspired by the North Californian coast where it was recorded. Taking all we know and love about Calexico, giving it a rougher edge, and increasingly confident songwriting has helped Joey Burns and John Converti...view item »

Liima
1982

Liima is effectively a side-project of Efterklang, in which the members of the beloved Scandinavian group make the kind of music that Efterklang would never make. EG, nostalgic full-bore...view item »

Grandbrothers
Open

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
Exitoca

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 »

Lambchop
The Hustle Unlimited

Lambchop just do what the freak they like and here they have taken the standout track from recent album 'FLOTUS' and given it an orchestral makeover. The saccharine strings and twinkling piano are just like those late '70s disco weepers we all secretly liked. Also we get a cover of Prince's 'When You Were Mine'....view item »
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EMA
Exile In The Outer Ring

Following two broken indie big-hitters in Past Life Martyred Saints and the more polished Future's Void, EMA offers up a twilit record about the bubbling anger of the American Midwest. The themes on Exile In the Outer Ring  are prescient and the music continues EM...view item »

Caribou
Swim

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 »

Bayonne
Primitives

Austin, Texas based musician Bayonne creates hypnotic dream-pop which pushes together Philip Glass/Steve Reich trance inducing repetition and Joanna Newsom’s folk-pop balladry. Listen to Spectrolite a few times and you’ll pick out something different to love...view item »

Gold Panda
Good Luck and Do Your Best

Essex born producer Gold Panda moves from Ghostly International to City Slang for his third album. As ever he is always developing his sound and approach, and with Good Luck and Do Your Best he leans towards warmer and more fully formed ‘songs’ than on his previous release. With Time Eater being an ...view item »

Broken Social Scene
Hug of Thunder

Big Canadian enormous band Broken Social Scene reconfigure for their most sparkling album yet. With 15 members to try to coincide diaries then it must be quite the undertaking but they’ve made a bold and panoramic album that should shift them to the next level and make all that admin worthwhile.  ...view item »

Tindersticks
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 »

Sinkane
Life & Livin’ It

Here’s the third album from Sinkane, the extremely funky outfit led by Ahmed Gallab, who you might also have seen touring William Onyeabor’s music in The Atomic Bomb Band recently. Life & Livin’ It can be seen as part of the same continuum, bringin...view item »

Anna von Hausswolff
The Miraculous

Miraculous is what swedish singer/songwriter Anna Von Hausswolff calls a place her family used to tell her about when she was small. The mysterious place has had a complicated history. It is home to Swedish traditional folk music and the landscape is beautiful but it was also the scene of an uprising in her country that led to m...view item »
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Gold Panda
Kingdom

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Timber Timbre
Sincerely, Future Pollution

There must be something in the water in Canada - the amount of dizzyingly innovate artists that continue to spill out of the creative North American hub is inspiring, and Timber Timber slot into that wave. Measured, surreal and consistently pioneering - Sincerly, Future Pollution is the ...view item »

Hauschka
What If

Hauschka is a modern master of prepared piano music, successfully transferring this esoteric approach to the instrument into lovely melodic songs. What If sees Hauschka adding automatic player pianos into the mix, which opens up even more possibilities for this eternal sound-tinkerer. Released by City S...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

A few years deep now, Cherilyn MacNeil puts flesh on the bones of her Dear Reader project here. Lead single ‘I Know You Can Hear It’ has something of the best Dirty Projectors and The Mountain Goats to it (album producer John Vanderslice has already worked with the latter). Another f...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 »

Jakuzi
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 »

Gold Panda
Your Good Times Are Just Beginning

Three tracks from Gold Panda’s recent full-length Good Luck And Do Your Best have been handed over to guest producers so that they can work some remix magic. John Roberts and Daisuke Tanabe share one side of the 12”, while Fort Romeau fills up side one with ...view item »
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Lambchop
Flotus

The Nashville collective celebrate their 30th anniversary if only to make me feel very old indeed. I think it's high time for a really great Lambchop album and with the unveiling of lead track the 18 minute 'The Hustle' we might just get it. This is an excellent electronic/kraut jam with Kurt Wagner's soft brown voice and the us...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 »

Nada Surf
The Weight Is A Gift

There is something magical about those sweet melodic vocals seamlessly woven in with the catchy, yet original rock beats. That that was not my first impression upon listening to this record, however. After the first listen I was so-so about it; basic, well-crafted pop that would likely gather dust on the shelf. But instead of blowing it off I ke...view item »
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Laura Gibson
La Grand

Laura Gibson wrote this album following a time spent in the titular Oregon town: a beautiful, characterful place we understand. To conjure La Grande on record, members of indie-americana heavyweights Calexico and ...view item »
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Laura Gibson
Empire Builder

Empire Builder is the result of Laura Gibson’s presumably quite upsetting experience of having her apartment building literally explode shortly after uprooting her life from Portland to New York. Tricky times, but they seem to have led to something beautiful: on this record Laura’s beautiful...view item »

Get Well Soon
Rest Now Weary Head You Will Get Well Soon

German band Get Well Soon have a rich and esoteric character, bringing a wide range of stylistic influences (a bit of tango, some Morricone-esque strings, brass-led folk etc.) into the cinematic sweep of their music. This reissue of their 2008 debut Rest Now Weary Head You Will Get Well Soon is released...view item »
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Nada Surf
You Know Who You Are

A brand new record from veteran alt-rockers Nada Surf, operating now as a four-piece. You Know Who You Are has been worked on over a number of years, and mixes together all the styles they’ve figured out over the years, with fast n’heavy rockers sitting alongside almost americana-like introspective numbers. ...view item »

Imarhan
Tahabort / Assossamagh

Imarhan are a Tuareg band looking to override some of the assumptions made about Tuareg music from those who’ve heard the likes of Group Inerane and Tinariwen. Tahabort / Assossamagh rolls along beautifully, calm but full of vital energy. The double A-side single was initially tou...view item »
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Tindersticks
The Waiting Room

The Waiting Room, Tindersticks’ latest full-length, comes accompanied by a full brace of short films, one for each of the album’s eleven tracks. These songs are thus suitably cinematic, grandly arranged but on an intimate scale. Also includes a guest vocal from Jenny Beth of Savages...view item »

Junior Boys
Big Black Coat

Junior Boys haven’t released a full-length album for half a decade: a good length of time in which to carefully construct a very strong brace of soulful synth-pop songs. Big Black Coat has a sleeve straight out of the 80’s, and there is an aspect of that in the style of the sound. But the production also has...view item »

Built To Spill
There's Nothing Wrong With Love

Built To Spill’s second record here, first released in 1994. Their gorgeously slackerish indie sound is pretty much at its peak here, with favourites like ‘Distopian Dream Girl’ and ‘Car’ included. This reissue, on Up Records, is the very first time There’s Nothing Wrong With Love has...view item »
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Naytronix
Mister Divine

Naytronix AKA Nate Brenner is multi-instrumentalist. His second album, Mister Divine, was conceived whilst he played bass as a touring member of tUnE-yArDs. His debut album, Dirty Glow was packed with off-kilter funky floor fillers. Here, those sounds have been swapped out for more surreal and ...view item »
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Cristobal And The Sea
Sugar Now

Cristobal And The Sea are smooth in a way rarely seen to quite this extent from modern bands. Sugar Now sounds like a more-than-usually energetic lounge / bossanova act in places, which turns out to actually be a good look for them. This is their debut full-length, and is released by the City Slang label....view item »
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HeCTA
The Diet

What happens when you throw together Kurt Wagner, Ryan Norris and Scott Martin? Well, you get HeCTA of course. Brimming with futuristic beats, disorienting spoken vocals, The Diet is an interesting experiment on what happens when you leave it up to the bare essenti...view item »
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Sinkane x Peaking Lights
Mean Dub EP

Sinkane is a fresh artist who blends a set of groovy ‘Western’ genres (krautrock, funk rock etc.) with Sudanese pop, with gorgeous results. This Mean Dub EP represents a further blend, as he’s handed over four tracks to Peaking Lights to dub them up good, and this they have done. Excel...view item »
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Sinkane
Mars

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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 »

Alden Penner
Canada In Space

Canada In Space is an EP that sets out a vision of Mars colony populated by a majority of the more northern North Americans. This vision is put across through the medium of creeping and intense indie rock, by ex-Unicorn frontman Alden Penner, who sounds quite frankly spooked. On City Slang, packaged in ...view item »
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Dan Mangan
Oh Fortune

This is an exceptional album on so many levels. It didn't necessary make the same emotional connection to me as the previous two albums, but you could see the maturation and progression musically. This is definitely his most varied (and even accessible) album from a musical standpoint. It is refreshing to see that he is not allowing himself to b...view item »
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Hauschka
2.11.14

Hauschka has been preparing his piano and processing it into neat compositions for many albums now, but what this release gives us is a look at unvarnished Hauschka. 2.11.14 contains two side-long improvisations recorded in Japan last year, so we can hear the man thinking in real time. Highly limited vi...view item »
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Naytronix
Mister Divine / Shadows

You may well have seen Naytronix’s Nate Brenner already, as part of tUnE-yArDs touring band. But you haven’t heard the music of this solo project yet, as this single is the first ever release under the name, in advance of his upcoming album. Funky-weird 70s style goodness. Mister...view item »

Sharon Stoned
Tape EP

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Malajube
Montreal

Malajube are Canada's latest offspring to be forced down your necks. They obviously like it so much they called their new single Montreal. It's a limited 7" on City Slang clocking in somewhere between Built To Spill and Modest Mouse. In fact come to think of it sounds exactly like Modest Mouse. I remember quite liking the album when I heard it...view item »
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Black Yaya
Black Yaya

Singer, songwriter David Ivar aka Black Yaya used to write, record and perform under the name Herman Dune, recording more than ten albums and travelling far and wide. Black Yaya was born out of David Ivar’s desire to go back to recording everything himself without the pressures of time or cost....view item »
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Calexico
Cumbia De Donde

Limited (1000 copies) two-track 7” from the pan-cultural US outfit helmed by Joey Burns and John Convertino. The A side “Cumbia De Donde” features the vocal of Amparo Sanchez and is from ninth album ‘Edge Of The Sun’ (City Slang). On the flip is the non-album cut “Worn Right Thru”. Atmospheric and stirri...view item »
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Calexico
Edge Of The Sun

This is a new Calexico album, right? The band who have long held the honour of having one of their album sleeves pride of place above my toilet are back and they've brought a multitude of formats with them. You can get it on single CD or double CD. LP or double LP  with extra etchings. It's not out 'til April so you have plenty of time to c...view item »
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Cristobal And The Sea
Peach Bells EP

Rio De Janeiro via Loughborough University, the carefree bossa-nova rhythms of Cristobal And The Sea groove gently in this debut EP Peach Bells. The indie quartet manage to weld Wilson Simonal and Jorge Ben with Arthur Russell and The Beach Boys. "Disquiet" and "My Love (Ay Ay Ay)" have a more distinctly Brazilian flavo...view item »
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Get Well Soon
Greatest Hits

Last week I reviewed a pretty decent batch of ‘90’s sounding indie-rock by Get Well Soon finding myself charmed by a couple of the tracks and their dEUS-like oddness. Comparing this record to that one is like comparing a sausage to a combined harvester. This is a series of (mostly despairing) covers...view item »
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Get Well Soon
The Lufthansa Heist

Get Well Soon, AKA Konstantin Gropper, will be releasing three different EPs on three consecutive Mondays in November. They will be available exclusively on limited edition 10” vinyl and all three are presented in sleeves with striking black and white artwork made by the celebrated German painter Hermann Schenkel. ‘The Lufthansa Heis...view item »
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Sinkane
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 »

To Rococo Rot
Instrument

It seems a lifetime ago that I watched To Rococo Rot rock Woodhouse Liberal Club in Leeds to its very foundations, I always admired the way they merged teutonic electronics, pulsating drums and warm melodic bass to create vibrant and tight instrumentals. This is their first album in God knows how long and generally its more of the same. ...view item »
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Hauschka
Abandoned City

To be honest when it comes to Hauschka I can take it or leave it but there’s no denying the guy has come up with some mad decent stuff over the years and in terms of insight into the creative mind he can be a very helpful individual. The title ‘Abandoned City’ for example is used as metaphor to describe the inner tensio...view item »
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On An On
Give In

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EMA
The Future's Void

The Future’s Void is EMA’s (aka Erika M. Andersen) second album, the follow up to the critically acclaimed Past Life Martyred Saints. Erika self-produced the album with the help of Leif Shackelford. The single, Satellites received the Best New Track accolade ...view item »
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Kevin Drew
Darlings

I went to see Broken Social Scene live once. For the first hour and a half or so I thought they were lovely, then the next hour or so I was starting to flag, tired feet, sore back, bored ears, and for the final hour of their set I really started to not care about anything they ever did ever again. My job...view item »
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Wye Oak
Shriek

Wye Oak’s fourth studio album Shriek was written and recorded after drummer/keyboardist and one half of the duo Andy Stack relocated to the west coast, leaving Jenn Wasner back in Baltimore. This took the band in a new direction as they found themselves writing separately for the first time. Shriek was pr...view item »
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The Notwist
Close To The Glass

The Notwist's 'Close To The Glass' is another nice surprise this week, the seventh from this progressive and hugely admired German experimental outfit. Their post-millennial breakthrough 'Neon Golden' was a populist benchmark for them, a slick and moving collection that still sounds great today. This first album in six years is quite a s...view item »
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Pick A Piper
Pick A Piper

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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 »

CocoRosie
Tales Of A GrassWidow

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Calexico
Spiritoso

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Junip (Jose Gonzalez)
Junip

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Dear Reader
Rivonia

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To Rococo Rot
Remix 12

I’ve grabbed this one off the review pile because I’m still kicking myself for missing out on Kieran Hebden’s remix of Neneh Cherry & The Thing’s cover o...view item »
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Ben Gibbard
Former Lives

Released at the tail end of 2012, Benjamin Gibbard's first proper solo effort went fairly unnoticed by critics and audiences. Fools, I say! 'Former Lives' would sit comfortably in the Death Cab For Cutie discography and is comprised of material that Benjamin has kept secret from his fellow band mates as well as tracks especially written for it. ...view item »
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Why?
Mumps, etc.

Yoni, Josiah and co finally release their fifth album this week after teasing us with the unpredictable ‘Sod In The Seed’ EP earlier in the year. Here we see them well settled into their niche as the They Might Be Giants of the back...view item »
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Calexico
Algiers

Calexico have been knocking ‘em out for years now. They’ve been together for 22 years which in this modern day fickle music industry is a remarkable thing! I thought they’d done a good 10-15 albums but it’s only six studio albums p...view item »
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Get Well Soon
The Scarlet Beast O'Seven Heads

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Why?
Sod In The Seed

I’m old enough to know the rules...and so it goes that I generally dismiss each new Why? release proclaiming it not as good as the last and that he’s ‘lost it’ before listening to it a couple more times and realising I was...view item »
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Laura Gibson
La Grande

As I put this CD in the player, Phil said to me, “This one's probably album of the week.” No pressure, then. On this album Oregonian Gibson picks out some gorgeous singer/songwritery compositions with a more interesting backing than the usual solo acoustic delivery, and a melodi...view item »
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Tu Fawning
A Monument

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Lambchop
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 »

Nada Surf
The Stars Are Indifferent To Astronomy

For me, Nada Surf peaked with their 2002 album "Let Go" which was packed with memorable songs. Since then the frequency of catchy pop songs they have recorded seems to have diminished. "The Stars Are Indifferent To Astronomy" came out a decade later in 2012 and doesn't quite match their past glories. The opening track, "Clear Eye Clouded Mind" i...view item »
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Calexico
Road Atlas 1998-2011

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J Mascis & The Fog
Everybody Lets Me Down

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Lambchop
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 »

Nada Surf
Lucky

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The Album Leaf
In A Safe Place

Here's Phil's delightful original review from way back in 2007.  Also in is a rather splendid new LP/CD by The Album Leaf which is Jimmy From Tristeza. It's really lovely floaty guitar music and if you liked the previous LP on...view item »
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