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Weekly Update Mid-Year Review, Jesca Hoop, Prettiest Eyes, Anderson .Paak.

Ø (Mika Vainio), Suicide, Melvins, Bonobo.

Headlines

  • Read our staff picks of the best albums and reissues so far this year. We’ve even made you a playlist.
  • Album of the Week goes to ‘STONECHILD’, Jesca Hoop’s album of stark and gorgeous indie folk. Grab a limited-edition Dinked variant whilst you can!
  • Feast your eyes and ears on our new Weekly Playlist.
  • Bonobo. We’ve got more copies of his limited single in, so pre-order before the end of tonight and you’ll be entered into a competition to win a rare white label.

It’s just about passed the halfway mark for the year which means only one thing; our Mid-Year Review is up. It’s been an excellent few months of great new music, with plenty of tasty reissues to boot. We always struggle coming to a collective decision on what we want featured, so we presented it in a random order. Get looking and get listening. 

New vinyl and CDs and tapes

  • Prettiest Eyes. Noise rock meets synth punk on the Castle Face signed group's third album.
  • Julia Shapiro. The Chastity Belt member goes solo for a reflective LP.
  • Sub-Saharan psychedelia from JuJu featuring a member of Goat.
  • Celebrate 30 Speedy Wunderground releases with Sinead O'Brien’s latest single. 
  • Olympia gives us some punchy alt-pop on her sophomore album.
  • Soft Walls. Lo-fi psychedelia evocative of Spacemen 3 and Deerhunter.
  • Sounds like Parisians recreating ‘Nuggets’ but it’s actually a bunch of chaps from Scotland; it can only be Les Bof!
  • The Soft Cavalry. Husband and wife team featuring Slowdive’s Rachel Goswell.
  • Earnest and anthemic indie rock from songwriter Mark Mulcahey
  • Unsettling pop courtesy of E B U
  • Anderson .Paak delivers his funk-soul-rap hybrid.
  • Strutting samba funk 7’’ from Ze Roberto.
  • Stranger Things. It’s back on Netflix today, and the soundtrack arrives tomorrow.
  • Looping blues from 75 Dollar Bill.
  • Spacey jams from Dire Wolves.
  • Sarasara writes an album centred on that episode of Peep Show where Jeremy and Hans join a cult.
  • Ø. First release from the archives from late experimentalist Mika Vainio.
  • City of Women. Intense and intriguing tunes made from self-made instruments.
  • J. McFarlane's Reality Guest bestows some airy indie rock upon us.

Re-issues

  • A Holy Trinity of Melvins albums are back on our shelves. Check out our fresh YouTube playlist of our favourite tracks, their inspirations and who they’ve influenced here.
  • A classic from Everything But the Girl gets reissued for its 25th anniversary.
  • The Suicide reissues are looking gorgeous. Those of you who haven’t heard this unnerving and influential classic need to get on it pronto!
  • Kashmere Stage Band. The greatest high school band ever.

Ant’s Electronic Round Up

Our resident techno fan returns to indulge us with all this week’s choices of prime dance and electronic music:

  • Proper buzzin’ to have a new EP from mysterious olde faves North Manc Beds on Skam. Crackin’ it is too.
  • Due to rave induced brain cell depletion, last week I forgot to mention the Special Request ‘Bedroom Tapes’ record which is proper.
  • The time Coil went full Ibiza Cafe Del Mar for that VHS soundtrack.
  • Portugal's Table Sports unearth and vinylize a superb PBK (Phillip B. Klingler) tape operating in Moebius & Roedelius/Cluster mode.
  • Most tranquil mini-LP on RAMZi's FATi Records from Ambien Baby aka D Tiffany and NAP.
  • Immersive sonic landscapes from K. Leimer meditating on the authoritarian impact on natural, cultural, intellectual and economic environments.
  • Transcendent, minimalist, organ drone works from Kali Malone.
  • Levon Vincent continues an unstoppable run DJ utility 'floor burners!
  • Electronically manipulated violin drone and Shankobyz - sampled, chopped and reassembled by Galya Bisengalieva.
  • Ace, mystical techno/house from Hieroglyphic Being on another stamped white label +++ 12".
  • LinnDrum carnival voodoo funk from Serpente on Ecstatic.
  • Beautifully packaged EP of refreshing electronix, from Aphex approved Holy Similaun on OOH-Sounds.
  • Silicon Scally quality assured electro business on CPU.
  • Moon Ra and John Macedo spools on The Tapeworm.
  • Bangin’, hyper chipmunk technoid soul and serious sound design skillz from Aïsha Devi.
  • Wistful Japanbient LP on Audiobulb from Tomogutsu Nakamura.

Money Saving Stuff

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We’ll see you next week! Enjoy your weekend in the sun, love Team Norman x

Words: Tom, Ant. 

Work: Nathon, Will, Phil, Benn, Tom, Ian, Jamie, and Daoud. 

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Best records this week

According to our review team at least...

Les BOF!

Voila!

10/10 from Will

Bit of an odd juxtaposition here, it's a record called 'Voila' by a band called Les Bof who are from Scotland. This record sounds Gallic as well, with French-language vocals a...read on »

Trash Kit

Horizon

9/10 from Will

Combining West African rhythms, close harmonies, and afrobeat guitars, Trash Kit's third album is a real treat; a sunny record with a definite festival vibe. More than that, i...read on »

75 Dollar Bill

I Was Real

8/10 from Daoud

75 Dollar Bill practice minimalism, but not as you might know it. On a purely textural level the music on their third album, ‘I Was Real’, brings to mind the deser...read on »

Achwghâ Ney Wodei

Achwghâ Ney Wodei

8/10 from Daoud

I believe they call this music dadaist. Like the art movement it’s nonsensical and absurd and also deadly serious. Achwghâ Ney Wodei formed some decades after dada...read on »

Spaceship

Outcrops

8/10 from Jamie

Spaceship is but one of the projects brought to us indie record-store types today by Mark Williamson. I was admittedly first drawn to this record by the attractive rendering i...read on »

KOKOKO!

Fongola

8/10 from Daoud

Though they occupy very different spaces musically, the Kinshasa band KOKOKO! Most remind me of is Senyawa. They share a common philosophy, a tradition-busting DIY single-mind...read on »

James Ferraro

Requiem for Recycled Earth

8/10 from Daoud

At this point, it’s definitely a faux-pas to say something sounds like Oneohtrix Point Never. But you know what, James Ferraro isn’t the one touring with a fucking...read on »

Coil

Theme From The Gay Man's Guide To Safer Sex

8/10 from Will

Coil, the influential, shape-shifting, cosmic electronic group, are releasing their hitherto unheard soundtrack for a VHS-only sex-ed documentary called 'The Gay Man's Guide T...read on »

Andrew Tasselmyer & Patrick Spatz

Interior Currents

8/10 from Daoud

The first Yorkshire Sculpture International is happening as I write this and, having visited some of the works that have been commissioned for Leeds, my mind is on that most p...read on »

Soft Walls

Not as Bad as It Seems

8/10 from Daoud

Maybe it’s because I’ve been hanging around the Leeds DIY scene for too long but something about lo-fi cassettes feels incredibly homely. Soft Walls, who has proba...read on »

Featured albums

Moon Ra
Kali Malone
Galya Bisengalieva
Serpente
John Macedo
Bonobo
Hieroglyphic Being
Tomogutsu Nakamura
Soft Walls
PBK
Sarasara
Holy Similaun
Sinead O'Brien
K. Leimer
Dire Wolves
Mark Mulcahy
75 Dollar Bill
Special Request
Ze Roberto
Les BOF!
Everything But The Girl
Levon Vincent
North Manc Beds
Coil
Silicon Scally
Ø (Mika Vainio)
JuJu
E B U
Prettiest Eyes
Aïsha Devi
Olympia
City of Women
J. McFarlane's Reality Guest
Anderson .Paak
The Soft Cavalry
Jesca Hoop
Julia Shapiro
Ambien Baby
Kashmere Stage Band
Suicide