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Worst Records of the Year

We spend loads of time telling you about the best records, but what about the worst? Join us in an, um, celebration of the dreadful records that have blistered our ears this year. Just a bit of Christmas fun...please don't take it too seriously. If your favourite record is in here then please continue to enjoy it. You don't need our blessing. Just don't make us listen to it.
Please note that this promotion officially ended on Friday December 23rd 2016. Any discounted items may now have returned to full price, and other items may no longer be available at all. If you missed out on this promotion then sign up for our email alerts so that you stand a better chance of not missing out on the next one.
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Antwon
Double Ecstasy

Clubs and sex are Antwon’s subjects of choice, and his music sounds exactly like both. Double Ecstasy’s trap-hip-hop detonations drop in and out in less than 20 minutes total, but the atmospheric impact made in that time is undeniable. Pressed to coloured vinyl on Anticon, in a limited edition of 1000 copies.

Bloc Party
Hymns

Suprise! Bloc Party are back! Hymns, their fifth record, arrives after some time away, with original songwriters Kele and Russell accompanied by a bass-player formerly of Menomena and a young drummer from Youtube. Initial single The Love Within has been picking up a lot of love from listeners, suggesting this might be a strong return. On Infectious Music.

Drugdealer
The End Of Comedy

Nowhere near as psychedelic as their moniker might suggest, Drugdealer are in fact a collaboration between LA-based artist Michael Collins (Salvia Plath / Run DMT) and Natalie Mering from Weyes Blood and and Ariel Pink. Travel-inspired whimsy which explores spaghetti westerns, perceptions of social media and Jean Baudrillard.

Giraffe Tongue Orchestra
Broken Lines

They have an incredible name and a hilarious line-up that includes members of indie-proggers the Mars Volta, metal mains Mastodon, math deathcrushers Dillinger Escape Plan and... the singer from Alice in Chains. There you have it, music has become fan fiction. Their new record, Broken Lines, should be something of a heavy rawk smorgasbord.

Guided By Voices
Please Be Honest

The endless productivity of Robert Pollard continues apace with Please Be Honest, designated a Guided By Voices album even though Pollard played every last sound on it. The 15 speedy songs on here give us the latest insights into this remarkably creativity, via a variety of nicely textured tunes. Out on Guided By Voices Inc.

Guy Garvey
Courting The Squall

After releasing six albums with his band, Elbow, including the Mercury Music Prize winning The Seldom Seen Kid (2008), Guy Garvey sets out alone with Courting The Squall. The album was made simply because Garvey loves making albums (and has recently split up with his wife so will be dead bored - ed). Nevertheless, it’s still a deeply felt personal statement and serves as a glimpse into his very being.....(and his enormous chin- ed (again)). 

How To Dress Well
Care

How to Dress Well's Tom Krell has done a good job of lurching from murky chillwave wannabe to clean and sophisticated boyband wannabe in the space of just three albums. This latest album has been mixed by Andrew Dawson (Kanye West, fun.) and has the download chart-ready hi-end production values in tact behind Tom's excellently smooth vocals. Hard to fathom that this is on the same label that recently gave us Richard Dawson.

Loose Tapestries
N.H.S.

Loose Tapestries is the name of the collaboration between Kasabian’s Sergio Pizzorno and comedian Noel Fielding. N.H.S. includes barmy songs created for the second series of Fielding’s equally mental tv comedy show, Luxury Comedy. There was a previous release from Loose Tapestries which now goes for big bucks on ebay so don’t hang around here. The songs, whilst bizarre and comical has some solid synth work and great instrumentation and moves through musical styles with ease.

Mark Kozelek
Sings Favorites

Mark Kozelek, formerly of Red House Painters and Sun Kil Moon, sure keeps busy. Here he is with a piano-and-voice-based album of covers, taking in choice selections from artists like Modest Mouse, Bob Seger and David Bowie. Sings Favourites also has some guest singing from Will Oldham, Mike Patten and Mimi Parker (of Low). On Caldo Verde.

Night Moves
Pennied Days

Night Moves present their second full-length album, Pennied Days. Synth-driven modern rock music, with wistful echo on the vocals and some 80’s-grade epic guitar. Texturally, Pennied Days puts me in mind of Phoenix, though the underlying songs have a clear original rock / R&B influence. On Domino.

Peter, Bjorn and John
Breakin' Point

Swedish trio Peter, Bjorn and John were going to call their 7th album Thriller 2, which would have been nice. In the end they plumped for Breaking Point. In contrast to the power pop sound on their previous album Gimme Some they’ve gone for big pop songs here, influenced by the ease with which fellow Swedes Abba made it all look so easy.

Placebo
Life's What You Make It

Yes....yes it is that one.  Placebo celebrate their 20th anniversary with a new 6 track EP which worryingly contains a version of the Talk Talk classic. If anyone wants to go ahead and murder them for doing this then of course be my guest. It's also incredible that they've existed for twenty years without anyone seriously trying to stop them.  

Preoccupations
Preoccupations

First up we had Women and once that band imploded we got Viet Cong and now we have Preoccupations which is basically the new name for Viet Cong. If last year's previously self-titled record is anything to go by this will be another strand of magical avant rock from the Calgary crew. They specialise in tight and taut compositions with incredible musical interplay that makes you wonder really why anyone else bothers.   

Shearwater
Jet Plane and Oxbow

Surprise surprise from Shearwater, who seem to have unleashed a full-blown 1980’s synth-rock album right here. Jet Plane and Oxbow is a collection of big, widescreen songs, designed with the help of Brian Reitzell and Jesca Hoop among others. CD, double LP, or a special, independent-stores-only blue vinyl ‘Loser’ edition. On Sub Pop.

Slaves
Spit It Out

Spit It Out is the first single and opening track from Slaves’ new sophomore album Take Control. Rip roaring punk revival stuff that’ll inspire your next riot, or maybe mini riot, or at least have a good night on the tiles. Produced by ex-Beastie Boy Mike D, and an exclusive to this release track on the B-Side.

The Last Shadow Puppets
Dream Synopsis

Comprised of Alex Turner (Arctic Monkeys), Miles Kane, Zach Dawes and James Ford (Simian Mobile Disco), The Last Shadow Puppets are a modern day supergroup. In December 2016 the quartet bring us a six-track golden nugget in The Dream Synopsis (recorded in just one day) - which offers fresh twists on album favourites, covers and unreleased cuts.

The Lemon Twigs
Do Hollywood

Setting the bar at terrifying new levels for annoying-ness, LA rich kid duo the Lemon Twigs manage to invoke '70s Paul McCartney to such a face slapping degree that the album should come with a bonus aloft thumb. They also recall preposterous '90s power pop revivalists Jellyfish in their love of dressing up like extras from Blackadder while worshipping at the leg of Emitt Rhodes.  

The Stone Roses
All For One

It was the 'where were you' moment for anyone still under the vaguest misapprehension that the Stone Roses were able to construct anything approaching a listenable song.  When your last decent attempt at a melody was released in 1989 that's a lot of years to try to repeat the trick. 'All For One' is of course laughably bad but the last smirk might be on the face of the band who will generate millions in ticket sales off the back of whatever they manage to come up with to fill an album. 

The Strokes
Future Present Past EP

It’s been awhile since we heard from the Strokes. They left us in the dark after 2013’s Comedown Machine, which finally provided the liberation from their five-album ball-and-chains contract with RCA Records. The Future Present Past EP, their first since 2001, tells us little about their future. But at least it features that classic Strokes sound, which will appease us until we hear more from them.

Warpaint
New Song

Warpaint have a new single, or new song, if you will. It’s called New Song. It’s produced by Jacob Bercovici who produced their debut EP Exquisite Corpse. The song has an ethereal pop vibe and the band claim their new material has been influenced by the likes of Bjork, Kendrick Lamar, Janet Jackson and Outkast.

Wild Beasts
Boy King

Sporting a sleek new logo and a slick new sound, Kendal's biggest ever export (bar the mint cake) are back with their increasingly commercially-aimed sound that might give the Hot Chip's and the Metronomy's a run for their money. Where they once sang "The messed bottom bunked bed of the dead, this fouled fallen nest, this dried up drooping breast, I hold my hips at this comic apocalypse, the world's a whoopee wibbling wantlingly on my crooked seat", they now sing "That's how I get my bang".   Yup, things change....and not for the better, sadly.