Laura Marling: Semper Femina

We’ve missed a couple of Marling albums; she was always good but if this new album isn’t her best, we must have missed some crackers. The music is slickly delivered but intimate, and slightly downbeat. It takes in several genres; some parts are country, some folk, some jazz, a mix of English folk and 60s […]

Fleetwood Mac: Tango in the Night

You should all have heard this, or parts of it. It was the Mac’s second-best selling album after Rumours and some of the tracks are as well-known as the Rumours classics — Seven Wonders, Caroline, Tango in the Night, Little Lies and Family Man among them — so there’s not much to say on the […]

Jarrod Dickenson: Ready The Horses

Good as Laura Marling is, she’s beaten into second place by this superb album from Dickenson. From the moment it starts playing, it’s a joy. Hailing from Waco, now living in Brooklyn, Dickenson has a honeyed, soulful voice and writes semi-acoustic soulful blues and country tunes. Like Marling, the music is reflective and mature, and […]

Heroines of Love and Loss

The way things work in general is that classical albums take a couple of plays to get into, whereas it’s the pop/rock tunes that have instant appeal; until now, we’ve never had a classical album with that “must play every day” thing you get with a catchy pop tune. Until now;  Not that a collection […]

Jim Parker: Travelling Light

The title says it all: Parker writes light music, and the collection takes the listener to different parts of the world. (He also wears his talent lightly, the sleeve notes being witty and self-deprecating). You might not know the name of Jim Parker but you’ll know his music; he has written for television and his […]

Stormzy: Gang Signs and Prayer

We can see why people love Stormzy, the first grime artist to land a number one album; he’s got charm and intelligence. The aging musos in the Review Corner haven’t got much in common with a black man from London, but even as young dogs we’d not have gone down the Tip Café to meet […]

Nick Cave: Lovely Creatures

The titular lovely creatures are the songs, and as Mr Cave told us in a Press release: “There are some people out there who just don’t know where to start with The Bad Seeds. This release is designed to be a way into three decades of music making; the songs we have chosen are the […]

Hackney Colliery Band: Live

Whenever we’re down in the dumps in the Review Corner, we often play Rock With the Hot 8, by The Hot 8 Brass Band, a New Orleans outfit that blend hip-hop, jazz and funk. It’s not brass as you might expect if you’re a fan of Foden’s Band, and nor are there eight of them, […]

Ferdinand Ries: Flute Quartets Vol.1

If you want to make a name for yourself, getting a job one of with the world’s greatest composers is a risky move, like being an understudy. You might have a lucky break or you might disappear without trace. Wikipedia reports that when Ries — friend and pupil of Ludwig van Beethoven — died, he […]

Maximo Park: Risk to Exist

The Review Corner are big fans of Max Park, but this album has divided us. The hard-core fans find it a little too formulaic in places, the less ardent among us think it’s their best album, main songwriter Paul Smith upping his game quite some way. There’s no predictable indie material, which they tend to […]