Category: Genius

  • Neil Young and the Promise Of The Real: Noise and Flowers

    Young is churning out his archives at a prodigious rate, some of which are excellent, others for the completist only, as they say. This one is great and if you’ve got a Neil Young fan in the fam, this is one gift you don’t have to worry about for Christmas. The great thing about Young […]

  • Mari Joyce: Dear Moon

    We listen to a lot of challenging music and for some weeks we’ve been missing something calming; we had some lovely Elgar songs and plenty of folk, but it wasn’t quite what we needed. Then came this. Ten seconds in, and we knew this was it. It helped that it reminded us of Fisherman’s Woman […]

  • Nick Faber … presents The Lost Highway Tapes

    It’s always a problem reviewing albums from bands like Biffy Clyro or Foals: you know the sound, you expect the quality, and unless they cover Agadoo badly, you’re not going to be surprised. It might be the pinnacle of musical perfection, but it’s hard to get worked up about. The flipside is that albums from […]

  • Fontaines: DC A Hero’s Death

    We’re often not impressed with bands billed as “the future of rock” but we can make an exception for Fontaines DC. This new album is special; so good it had us singing – SINGING – to one track about three plays through. That literally never happens. It only seems 10 minutes since their debut album, […]

  • Badly Drawn Boy: Banana Skin Shoes

    Private Eye mocks the term but Badly Drawn Boy is a bit of a national treasure; surely everyone likes him? Or at least likes the idea of him, a bobble-hatted troubadour turning out polished pop gems. You want all his releases to be good but if they’re not, you forgive him. We saw him live […]

  • Howard Skempton: The Man, Hurdy-gurdy and Me

    We sometimes rave about albums but this is 100% wonderful. If we ever send a space rocket into space (in case you wondered where space rockets go), you could send this recording to sum up Britishness: witty, joyful, a bit mad, wildly eccentric and lots of fun. Whatever you want it’s got it, from early […]

  • Bombay Bicycle Club: Everything Else Has Gone Wrong

    Bombay Bicycle Club are cursed by the same, er, curse as Foals: everything they do is good, but you expect that, so it’s hard to assess.Their quality control is just really high. We’ve long thought Foals and Bombay Bicycle are the best bands in the UK so we were doubly pleased when both released new […]

  • Neil Young and Crazy Horse: Colorado

    Colorado is not one of Young’s great albums but it’s a grower and could go down as one of his later-career highlights. There’s a film with it; Young’s films are best avoided but someone who did watch said he comments in it to his band: “It doesn’t have to be good, just feel good.” That’s […]

  • Sam Baker: Horses and Stars

    This is one of the most remarkable albums we’ve had in some time. Baker half sings and half talks and plays gentle electric guitar, but his songs tell a powerful story of normal folk and it has a real power. He looks like a beardless Kris Kristofferson, comes from Texas and has a gravelly but […]

  • Vampire Weekend: Father Of The Bride

    Vampire Weekend were always smart, mixing African guitar and indie, and generally being intelligent. They met at an Ivy League university. Their drummer supports Spurs. So brainy are they perceived that all the reviews we read for this were themselves intellectual; we read several that verbosed at length but never mentioned any music. Here goes. […]