Ayalew Mesfin: Che Belew!

The Press notes say that Ayalew Mesfin is among the greats of 1970s Ethiopian music legends, the music he created with his Black Lion Band among the funkiest to arise from Addis Ababa. His records were mostly 7in singles and reel-to-reel tapes collected for this and it’s a charming and enjoyable album. The recordings are […]

Bearcraft: Fabrefactions

This is a peculiar album, in that we can’t make our minds up. At first we thought it started off strongly and tailed off to be rather forgettable, yet track nine turns out to be a proper earworm. It’s electronic pop with pretentions to grandeur that means it’s more than just electronic beeps with a […]

Charli XCX: How I’m Feeling Now

This is a very modern album, recorded by XCX at home during lockdown and in consultation with fans via social media. It’s also modern in that it’s mostly style over substance; she can write a melody but it’s hard to recall any of it afterwards. The national critics seemed to love it, but she’s probably […]

Sebastien Tellier: Domesticated

Monsieur Tellier is an exasperating character, his output ranging from brilliant to tedious. Two members of the Review Corner walked down the aisle to his best song, La Ritournelle, then went to see him at a festival where he was such a clown he ran out of time and was closed down by the stage […]

Oliver Tree: Ugly Is Beautiful

Mr Tree is new to us. Wikipedia informs us that he is in fact Oliver Tree Nickell, singer-songwriter, producer, rapper, comedian, and filmmaker. He has said he would retire as soon as this debut was released and plays a character, Turbo, though the track 1993 apparently refers to an alien called Little Ricky ZR3, which […]

Lack of Afro: I’m Here Now

Adam Gibbons, aka Lack of Afro, is from Devon, born in Exeter but now living in Ilfracombe. Wikipedia reports that he was given the nickname Lack of Afro while a student, when he DJd and played a lot of funk, presumably looking the opposite of the performers he loves. This new one opens with an […]

Dutty Moonshine: Big Band City Of Sin

Sometimes you gotta take off the reviewing hat (we all have one, standard issue from the Reviewers Guild and Associated Union of Random Scribblers , edible so you can eat it, obvs) and just play something loud. This is that. Dutty Moonshine Big Band are big, daft and enjoyable. They’re apparently electro-swing, a genre that […]

Jiggy: Hypernova

Whatever you’re expecting, Jiggy is not it. Who would expect trad Irish tunes to mix so well with world and a Stereo MCs-type dance sound? For a start you can’t work out where they’re from; they sound Irish but they sing in French and some kind of Middle-European language at various points. The line-up is […]

Stumbleine: Sink Into The Ether

Producer Stumbleine’s seventh album, offers, say the Press notes, “a deep submergence within a celestial upper region somewhere beyond the clouds”, which in a nutshell is Moby in his more thoughtful moments. It’s a decent album, albeit low key: one for late nights and reflection. If you weren’t locked in your house, it would be […]

Cerrone: DNA

Cerrone, who like a Brazilian footballer just has the one name, is possibly someone you never heard of but you’ll know what he did. He has sold more than 30m albums but only had one real hit, Supernature, back in the 70s. But along the way he helped invent electronic dance/disco, the kind with a […]