Scott Matthews: Home Pt2

A bit like the Mounties we always get a CD reviewed, even if the sounds of the launch party and the promotional tour are long forgotten. We’ve got all Scott Matthews’ CDs — one we even bought — and always found him a little frustrating. Clearly a talented songwriter, he always seemed to hide his […]

The Little Unsaid: Imagined Hymns and Chaingang Mantras

This is our favourite of four albums we’ve had recently, a fact that would have surprised us at first play. Lau are the slick stadium band, Dan Walsh the bloke down the pub providing entertainment, The Little Unsaid offer serious music on serious topics. At first hearing, it’s a little intense but it’s compulsive listening. […]

Hue And Cry: Pocketful Of Stones

In musical terms, we should be saying this is the album of the year. Every time we play it, the quality of the songwriting and the playing, and Pat Kane’s soulful voice, bowl us over with their greatness. Sadly, we’re trivial, superficial, and prefer the latest band with a hot new riff. Hue and Cry […]

Gogol Bordello: Seekers and Finders

Gypsy punks Gogol Bordello emerged from the depths of the Balkans (ok so it was Lower East Side of Manhattan but that doesn’t sound so romantic) a good few years ago. We’ve never taken to their raucous brand of punk: it’s good fun and brilliant at a festival, but not something you’d sit and listen […]

Prince: Purple Rain

Is this deluxe reissue of Prince’s classic album worth getting? Doh. Of course it is. The album contains classics such as When Doves Cry and Let’s Go Crazy, and this remastered version comes with recordings “from the vaults”, single versions of the album tracks and a live DVD. Fans of Prince who bought the album […]

Jocee: Just Love

Jocee is living the dream whether or not anyone buys this. She already makes a living with a residency at the Blues Kitchen in Shoreditch, ran an acoustic music night for emerging artists with Pixie Lott for three years and is a member of the Urban Voices Collective. She has worked with Paloma Faith at […]

Yaniv d’Or: Thoughts Observed

This is a beautiful collection of music, but quiet. It’s one for reflective evenings alone; they’re love songs sung sparsely by countertenor (falsetto) Yaniv d’Or. Dan Deutsch accompanies equally sparsely on the piano. The sleeve notes say that d’Or has previously explored the music of his Sephardic heritage, with his Spanish, Turkish, Egyptian and Libyan […]

Heath Common: Heath Common and The Lincoln 72s

Heath Common is a beat poet whose previous efforts have been a little hit and miss, but this new album is his most musical and probably the most likely to raise his profile. Admittedly that profile will go from cult figure’s cult figure to merely cult figure but we can at least recommend you consider […]

Stax Classics Otis Redding / Sam and Dave

Released as part of Stax Records’ 60th anniversary celebration, the Stax Classics series highlights some of the label’s biggest stars from the 1960s and 70s, budget-priced albums offering a dozen songs that “transcend the obvious hits”, as the PR says. (Also see the Bookers and Carla Thomas) According to one review, Otis Redding arrived in […]

Van Morrison: The Authorised Bang Collection

Yet another three-CD re-issue for Van fans, and this is pretty good. Although some tracks have knocked around as bootlegs, and Morrison clearly had issues with Bang at the time, he writes the sleeve notes and says Bang owner Bert Berns (who wrote Here Comes The Night) was a genius with soul. Berns met Morrison […]