Wallows: Nothing Happens

Wallows are a bit unfortunate with their page-mates this week: Gary Clark Jr and Fontaines DC are both career-defining CDs, Weezer are Weezer and Wallows, an indie rock trio from Los Angeles, are just pretty good. They’re a bit like Weezer, sunshine-infused indie and lots of harmony. It’s bouncy and it’s got lots of energy, […]

Fontaines DC: Dogrel

We read some profiles from Ireland before listening to this Dublin band; the Irish Press loves them and hails them as the next global hit for the city. This is partly because the band is so Dublin — “Dublin in the rain is mine,” the vocals bellow within seconds of the opening song Big (as […]

Vula Viel: Do Not Be Afraid

One of those albums that’s hard to review, its mix of world music and jazz being possibly unique. You can’t compare it to anyone else and the best comparison we can make is a rainbow: it’s sweeping and colourful, though possibly lacking a pot of gold at the end for the performers. Some history: Vula […]

Weezer: Weezer (Teal Album)

Covers albums are a weird concept, especially for a big band like Weezer, though the backstory is amusing. Weezer have always played covers, including War Pigs by Black Sabbath (also covered by Flaming Lips for a spell), and fans pressured them to do a cover of Toto’s Africa. After trolling fans with a cover of […]

Sparkling: Felonious

We thought this lot to be a US hip hop group — that’s what the title puts us in mind of — but it’s not: it’s vintage 80s synth pop delivered to a high standard. We’ve been playing the new Foals album a lot, and it’s a bit Foals, 80s style. Sparkling are Danish — […]

Aylish Kerrigan: The Dream Bridge – Songs by Ives and Cowell

Charles Ives is called the father of contemporary American music, say the release notes. He was an innovator and a loner with a brilliant mind, and the songs chosen for this album range from the simplistic to the most complex, and represent the eclectic range of styles Ives used, from jazz to gospel. Henry Cowell […]

Sleeper: The Modern Age

Sleeper were (to us, you might disagree) a middle-ranking Britpop band, formed in 1993, notching up eight top 40 hit singles and featuring in the soundtrack of Trainspotting. They split in 1998 but reunited in 2017, and this new album is the first in 21 years. We’d forgotten they existed and can’t hum any of […]

The Mornington Singers: To the Northeast, The Choral Music of John Buckley

The title suggested something like the Kings Singers, a jolly choir singing jolly tunes, but within a second it’s clear this is not the case: opener Music, When Soft Voices Die is a beautiful and timeless sacred-sounding song, suggestive of sitting in a church listening to music and pondering life and eternity. The only actual […]

Molly Tuttle: When You’re Ready

This is Tuttle’s debut, as long as you don’t count an earlier EP, and if you want slick, commercial rock/country, it’s pretty well perfect. Tuttle is a guitar virtuoso — lots of people can say that, but she was crowned instrumentalist of the year at the 2018 Americana Music Awards, and was not only the […]

Ten Fé: Perfect, Present Tense

It’s a glorious moment when you get new music that you instantly need to play over and over. So we can’t really review Ten Fé’s new one in any objective sense: it’s marvellous from start to finish. Within two beats of opener Won’t Happen starting it’s obvious this is a good new album, the strummed […]