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Tuesday, 11 May 2010

New Music

This past few weeks has been a great time for buying fresh music. I've had a real good run of brilliant releases and a great gig.

First up has to be The National.

I managed to end up in a box at the Royal Albert Hall last week with my folks and a very lovely lady and the show was immense. The new album, High Violet came out on monday and was described by the sunday papers as 'a masterpiece'. While i'm not compelled to use quite such epic comparisons to the great albums of all time, this record is fantastic. Boxer was one of my most played albums of the year when it came out and this tidy collection of tunes picks up where that left off. The lyrics are as melancolic as ever, but the songs themselves are slightly more uplifting. I read a recent interview with them which spoke of how REM's Michael Stipe had advised the band 'not to be scared of writing pop songs'. I think they have taken this advice and applied it as much as possible with a few of the tracks being melodic and radio friendly. I'd strongly advise going out and buying this.

Flying Lotus.

Fly-lo's Los Angeles LP blew me away when it came out. Literally blew me away. I've found it a little more difficult to ger into his new record, Cosmogramma, but there are certainly some gems on there. He's become the darling of this sound in the past few years and has a few great collabs on the LP including one with Thom Yorke. The best though has to be Table Tennis featuring Laura Darlington who's vocals are sublime. It's basically the 'Tea Leaf Dancers' of this album. But sadly not as good (as if anything ever could be).

Anyway, try it out, and check out Auntie's Harp too, and ode to a late family member.


Black Sands, the new album from Si Green is dope. Start to finish dope. I've been a fan of Bonobo since his first Ep on Ninja Tune. He's ridden the wave of instrumental hip hop, landing on the beach of mainstream 'trip hop and easy listening' as the music journalism industry lapped up everything 'chill out' before disgarding it just as easily. He now arrives back where he started, making great instrumental music, something that over my years of listening to hip hop, seems to be actually far far harder than many would have you believe.

The stand out track on the album has to be the Andreya Triana song 'The Keeper' but you can go find that yourselves. Instead, lap this one up. On another note, he's also produced an entire LP for Andreya, so be sure to pick that up when it drops this summer.


My last head nod goes out to Lenzman, in my eyes the best drum and bass producer doing his thing right now. He's steadily growing towards being at the pinnacle of the game and with the amount of amazing music he's putting out right now, it's only a matter of time.

Kasra's Critical Records has just started a sister imprint, Modulations. To launch the fiasco, he's drawn for two gems from Lenzman, and rightly so. 'More than I can take' shows off just how well this producer can craft the use of soul and samples into the drum and bass genre. Subtle and sublime all at once, this hasn't been off my record player since it came out on monday. Each release on Modulations is also a limited 10", so go and grab one and support a great producer, a great label and a great piece of wax.

The second Lenzman tune i HAVE to recommend is 'Open Page' featuring Riya. Riya's a vocalist being used a fair amount within the scene recently and it's obvious why. Together, they have made a beautiful tune, out now on promo from Metalheadz.

Remember everyone, please, if you like the music featured here go and BUY it.

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