As a contemporary jazz set, Far from Over has just about everything.
I See You pulls off the feat of managing to sound both exactly like the xx and unlike anything they have done before.
Charlotte Gainsbourg’s new album is the first she’s written the lyrics for, and, perhaps as a result, gives her voice its broadest palette yet as she tries on different roles: child, ingenue, diarist, diva.
Earl Grey may not be enough of a hit parade for this precocious outfit to break through, but Girl Ray are certainly ones to watch.
Shoegaze is rarely affiliated with overwrought emotion, and yet it’s difficult not to feel moved by the expanse of the group’s oceanic comeback.
After Laughter – candy-coated bitterness at its best – may steer them away from the Kerrang! crowd, but one thing remains consistent to Paramore’s emo roots – the theatrical mellifluence of internal angst.
Nuanced, understated, restrained: you could apply the same adjectives to much of the music here, which turns out to be rather more of a mixed blessing.
Staples might not own everyone quite yet but Big Fish Theory suggests he’s well on the way.
There’s ... something punchy and confident about Semper Femina as a whole, an album that’s as big on telling details as it is on big ideas.
It’s not a perfect debut – it’s slightly too long for one thing, and there are a couple of points where it sags – but it sounds like an album teeming with original, daring ideas.
More Life offers little solace for those who never bought what the Canadian rapper was selling but for his fans that gave his songs billions of streams last year, they’ll hear no issue.
A great deal of the album’s power comes from the way the bleakness of the lyrics is offset by the lusciousness of the melodies and the comforting familiarity of the sound, with its acoustic guitars and beautifully subtle orchestrations.
There’s something really powerful and undeniable about V’s songs that suggests it could provide the most unlikely twist in an unlikely story: the Horrors actually becoming as big as the overheated hype announced they would a decade ago. Whether that happens or not, it’s a triumph.
Visions of a Life sees the band refine the exuberant jumble of dream-pop and grunge that characterised their debut My Love is Cool, while also finding new areas of exploration.
Kelela’s vocal stops Take Me Apart ending up as a fragmented series of sounds: consistently exquisite as it dances between lovesick confusion and shrewd sensuality.
Thundercat’s 23-track third album, Drunk, takes you down a rabbit hole and turfs you out in his lopsided wonderland of funk, soul, hip-hop and soft rock, with guest characters including Lamar, Pharrell, saxophonist Kamasi Washington and Wiz Khalifa.
A record that banishes any listener cynicism on first contact; a wide-eyed look into the wild blue yonder.
No Shape sounds like a unique talent coming into full bloom. However weird it may seem, he’s here.