• Ben Lee

New Releases: 4th December 2020

Updated: Dec 4, 2020

Ben brings you all the new releases and reissues to arrive at The Vinyl Whistle this week, featuring releases ranging from indie, soul, hip-hop, electronic, soundtrack, pop, 80s psychedelic, punk and rock. To order, you can find the items on the links below as we will send items as normal for delivery during lockdown. Here's Ben's roundup of his Top 10 Picks of the week:

Arctic Monkeys - Live At The Royal Albert Hall

All proceeds from the album will go to War Child to help fill the £2 million deficit they are facing in 2021 caused by the devastating impact of Covid-19 on their fundraising. These funds are urgently needed to support those who are worst hit by the virus.

“On June 7, 2018 we played a very special show at London’s Royal Albert Hall. All the proceeds from that memorable night were donated to War Child in support of the vital work they do protecting, educating, and rehabilitating children who have experienced the trauma of conflict and the horror of war. The situation that was bad in 2018 is now desperate and those children and their families need our help more than ever. To enable War Child to reduce their funding deficit and continue their valuable work, we are happy to be able to release a live album, recorded that evening at The Royal Albert Hall. All proceeds will go direct to the charity. We thank all our fans in advance for their support of this release and in turn for their support of War Child” - Arctic Monkeys.

Recorded at the start of the band’s Tranquility Base Hotel + Casino tour, Arctic Monkeys - Live At The Royal Albert Hall, features 20 of the band’s finest moments to date.

Namir Blade - Aphelion's Traveling Circus

Namir Blade is a multi-instrumentalist, producer, and artist from Nashville Tennessee. He started experimenting with sounds at the age of six and further developing and refining his talents from middle school well into high school while attending Nashville School of the Arts.

Over the years he has had projects and collaborations that extended to multiple genres from House to Hip-hop, working with some of Nashville’s most renowned artists. His stylings are often self-reflective, innovative, organic, and almost sporadic at times. Surrealism, Afro-Futurism, Nerd culture, and Black culture bleeds through his sound as primary influencers so that anyone lending an ear is immediately ejected from their seat. In the past, Namir has worked closely with several multimedia art collectives, as well as SoundCloud-Golden age producer collectives, Natural Selection and Wizards Only. Recent press includes securing a spot on OkayPlayer’s ‘Best of the Week’ Spotify Playlist and being featured on both Uproxx (Best New Music) and HipHopDX.

Bonobo - Black Sands (10th Anniversary Edition)

To mark the 10th anniversary of the critically-acclaimed Black Sands, Bonobo’s celebrated breakthrough record, the album is released on limited-edition red vinyl featuring a new version of the iconic cover image taken by Green..

Influenced by the divergent, bass-driven strands of the UK electronic music scene at that time, Green artfully fitted those evolving sounds into his own wider vision. The record’s lasting importance stems from the depth that he found in those combinations, rattling two-step rhythms and heavy pressure sub-bass twinned with carefully crafted songwriting and lush, brightly-realised instrumentation.

It’s a record that’s both timeless and wonderfully of its time. From Kiara, which weds cinematic, string-laden composition with chopped up vocals and luminous synth arpeggios, to Eyesdown, where subterranean swells of bass meet Andreya Triana’s warm, peerless vocals, the album is effortlessly multi-faceted. Listening back a decade later, it still sounds just as beguiling, emotive and transportive as it did the first time round.

Nick Cave / Nicholas Lens - L.I.T.A.N.I.E.S

Perhaps best-known for his distinctive vocal style, Australian polymath Nick Cave here steps into the spotlight as librettist rather than performer, for a second operatic project with Belgian composer Nicholas Lens. Having collaborated on Shell Shock in 2014, they joined forces again during the global lockdown to create a new work, L.I.T.A.N.I.E.S.. At Lens’s request, Cave penned 12 litanies – “petitions to a divine maker” – simple, moving texts which the composer then wove into what he calls a “modest chamber opera of sleeping dreams”. Riding his bike around an unusually empty Brussels, Lens had been reminded of the magical stillness of the Rinzai Zen temples he had seen in rural Japan. Memories of these structures and of the inner peace he experienced while visiting them were the initial inspiration for the minimalistic, at times trance-like music of L.I.T.A.N.I.E.S., which features Denzil Delaere, N.L. Noorenbergh, Claron McFadden and Lens’s artist daughter Clara-Lane on vocals. Though the eleven instrumentalists recorded their parts individually in Lens’s home, to respect social distancing guidelines, there is a clear unity of purpose about the finished opera, a work of gentle beauty.

The Fall - Take It Down To The Wire

Limited 180 gram vinyl Gatefold sleeve. Great live recording from a radio broadcast of The Fall live on Sunday 16th of June 1985 Clitheroe Castle, Lancashire. It was a free open-air concert. The set from 2 x 4 through Lay of the Land was broadcast on Steve Barker's "On the Wire," BBC Radio Lancashire. Organized by the station and Ribble Valley Borough Council.

Half Japanese - Crazy Hearts

London's PVA have signed to Ninja Tune’s taste-maker label Big Dada (Young Fathers, Kae Tempest, Roots Manuva etc). Talks is the insistent, propulsive first release from their debut EP for Big Dada, Toner. The mercurial Dan Carey (black midi, Bat For Lashes, Fontaines D.C.) has worked with the band once more on production duties.

As well as featuring three new tracks - Talks, Sleek Form, Exhaust / Surroundings - the EP also features remixes from Mura Masa, an early fan of the trio, Lynks and Daniel Fox of Girl Band.

Kelly Jones - Don't Let The Devil Take Another Day

Barely a year after Stereophonics last no. 1 album Kind, ‘Phonics frontman Kelly Jones releases this 21 track collection featuring reinterpretations / re-workings of 18 Stereophonics tracks (classics and deep cuts), plus two songs from Kelly’s 2007 solo album Only The Names Have Been Changed and an emotional take on Kris Kristofferson’s timeless classic, Help Me Make It Through The Night.

Khruangbin - Late Night Tales

Hot on the heels of Mordechai, the critically acclaimed third album from US psych-rockers Khruangbin, the Texas trio become the latest act to present their own Late Night Tales in the popular, long-running musician-curated album series.

With a mind-blowing selection of tracks that cross borders and cultures, Khruangbin’s deep love of global grooves – from Asian pop to Nigerian reggae – Japanese mellow groove to Latina flavas – are steeped in eclecticism; Nazia Hassan’s Hindi-disco Khushi, produced by British-Indian legend Biddu, South Korean rock band Sanullim who contribute Don’t Go, a pair of African bangers from Nigerian Maxwell Udoh and Roha Band, from Ethiopia; a diversion to Belarus for Песняры and thence to Madrid for the strident vocal performance of Paloma San Basilio with Contigo before hightailing back to Texas.

Elsewhere, the Lone Star state reps proudly, with David Marez and Kelly Doyle plus, in the LateNightTales tradition, the band deliver an exclusive, horizontally brilliant version of Kool and The Gang’s Summer Madness, while the mix concludes with a spoken word piece by Tierney Malone, accompanied by fellow Houstonian Geoffrey Muller’s atmospheric banjo rendering of Erik Satie’sGnossienne.

Sigur Ros - Odin's Raven Magic

Composed in the 14th or 15th century Odin’s Raven Magic is an Icelandic poem in the ancient Edda tradition (Edda - a term that describes two Icelandic manuscripts of which together are the main sources of Norse mythology and Skáldic poetry) its anonymous author clearly had an intimate knowledge of the Edda literature and mythology which alludes to a number of pagan motifs which are now lost. The poem recounts a great banquet held by the gods in Valhalla while they were absorbed in their feasting, ominous signs appeared that could foretell the end of the worlds of the gods and men.

The album Odin’s Raven Magic is an orchestral collaboration between Sigur Rós, Hilmar Örn Hilmarsson, Steindór Andersen and Maria Huld Markan Sigfúsdóttir which premiered 18 years ago at the Barbican Centre, London and is now finally - almost two decades later - being released. The performance honours the poem, dramatic and beautiful, classical with a modern strike. A stone marimba was built especially for the performance by Páll Guðmundsson.

Odin’s Raven Magic - the poem - had been relegated from mainstream ancient literature ever since 1867, when Norwegian scholar Sophus Bugge claimed it was a 17th century fabrication.

Yungblud - Weird!

Weird! is Yungblud’s most emotionally complex body of work to date. He recorded it at studios in London and Los Angeles with Cervini, Greatti and another frequent collaborator, Matt Schwartz (Cold War Kids, Bullet For My Valentine, Massive Attack). True to Yungblud’s fierce refusal to box himself in, Weird! embodies a wildly eclectic collage of sound: Queen-inspired harmonies, Beatles-esque chord progressions, elements of dance-punk and glam-rock and hip-hop and metal. Weird! is like an episode of Skins in album form.

Here are the best reissues coming out this week at The Vinyl Whistle:

ABBA - Happy New Year

A highly-collectible, strictly limited, numbered, translucent blue vinyl 7”inch edition of Happy New Year in exclusive packaging. To commemorate the arrival of 2021, a world-wide run of 6000 copies of this exclusive single have been pressed. The die-cut sleeve features unique artwork, which displays the single with its picture label, a shot of ABBA from the Rune Söderqvist-designed Super Trouper album cover sessions.

Beyonce - Homecoming

This is a four LP set of Beyoncé’s historic headlining Coachella performance on two weekends in April 2018. Beyoncé was the first African American woman to headline the Coachella festival, and her performances received immediate widespread acclaim from fans and critics alike for the staging and celebration of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).

The set includes over two dozen songs that moved over 125,000 concert goers in the Valley. The epic pyramid-shaped bleachers held some 100 dancers and band, with special guest performers including Solange, JAY-Z, and Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams, who brought Destiny’s Child magic, harmony and nostalgia.

Camel - Rain Dances

The band's fifth release from 1977, Rain Dances is Camel at its best, offering the most consistent and representative package in their saga. The addition of Caravan-cofounder Richard Sinclair proves profitable, as do a few colourist touches by Brian Eno on Elke. Mel Collins' woodwinds are among the highlights, especially on Tell Me and the title track. From beginning to end, this project flows gracefully.

Coldplay - Christmas Lights

Coldplay celebrate the tenth anniversary of Christmas Lights by releasing it as a blue vinyl 7" single, backed by Coldplay's take on the perennial Christmas classic Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas which was recorded for a Jo Whiley, BBC Radio 1 live session, at the tail end of 2000. This is the first time Christmas Lights has ever appeared on a physical single format.

Edan - Primitive Plus

First repress on vinyl. Primitive Plus is the official debut album by Edan, first released via Lewis Recordings on March 19, 2002. It's a truly amazing album packed with innovative production, intracite rhymes and sophistication. It sounds like it's from the hip-hop's golden age and sits next to Big Daddy Kane, Kool Keith and Slick Rick.

G.I.S.M - Detestation

Relapse Records is proud to announce the first ever fully-authorized reissue of GISM's landmark debut LP, Detestation. Originally released in 1984, Detestationhas since remained one of the most innovative, bewildering, extreme, and wildly influential albums in the punk and metal canon. To say Destestation was ahead of its time would be a huge understatement - it incorporated elements from so many genres: hardcore, punk, heavy metal, glam, thrash, industrial, and experimental. It was almost as if listeners didn’t know what to do with the record’s music but gravitated to it nonetheless as they recognized it was something unique and special.

Amy MacDonald - This Is The Life

This Is The Life is the debut album from 2007 from Scottish folk and pop singer-songwriter Amy Macdonald. She taught herself to play guitar and was inspired by artists like Travis and the songwriting skills of Francis Healy. The catchy pop singles This Is The Life and Mr. Rock and Roll reached high in the international charts. The other songs on the album are likeable pop-songs and show her songwriting and vocal talents. Amy’s first release climbed to number two in the charts and eventually went multi-platinum in European countries.

Ennio Morricone - Morricone Segreto

Ennio Morricone, the world-renowned Italian composer, sadly passed away at the age of 91 earlier this year. During an extraordinary career which spanned more than six decades, he created over 600 original compositions. Behind his hugely celebrated film scores of Once Upon A Time In The West, Once Upon A Time In America, The Untouchables, The Mission, Cinema Paradiso, Hateful Eight and The Good, The Bad And The Ugly is a hidden, eccentric side to his genius that is deeply appreciated amongst his fans, many other artists and connoisseurs

This brand new collection, featuring 7 previously unreleased tracks, explores what is possibly Morricone’s richest creative period, between the end of the 1960s to the early 80s, demonstrating Morricone’s long lasting influence for generations of musicians and film directors to this day.

Morricone Segreto is an acid-tinged sonic journey through mysterious voices, fuzz guitars, airy strings, eerie synths and modern grooves from the Academy-a composer who was always ahead of the trend, dictating style in his own way. Scores from an array of film genres where the Maestro managed to create his unique and unmistakable style, blending avant-garde with the finest pop-psych attitude. A true treasure trove of rare and forgotten pieces and alternate takes from the historical archives of CAM Sugar. Highlights include extracts for Lui Per Lei, Stark System and Il Clan Dei Siciliani.

Morricone Segreto is proof that even one of the most celebrated composers of our time can still hold secrets yet to be unveiled.

The Motorcycle Boy - Scarlet

For fans of The Jesus and Mary Chain, The Primitives, The Alvvays, Best Coast, Shop Assistants. The Motorcycle Boy are / were an Edinburgh based band formed from the ashes of teenage upstarts Meat Whiplash and fronted by ex-Shop Assistant Alex Taylor. The release of their debut single Big Rock Candy Mountain led to favourable reviews and extensive airplay including daytime plays on Radio 1. The single became a top 3 indie hit and flirted with the lower regions of the national charts. The Flood produced Sweet Dreams Pretty Baby (included as a bonus track on the CD) was scheduled as a follow up single but was moth balled as the band concentrated on recording an album. Band infighting, sackings and general mismanagement led to Chrysalis shelving the album. The album continued the faster miles per hour, sequencer heavy, style of Big Rock Candy Mountain in songs such as Hey Mama and Trying To Be Kind but also showed a more articulate song writing ability with Valentine and Under The Bridge. The addition of the mesmerisingTake Me For A Walk and the stunning Up Here will only make you wonder why this album has never had the release it deserves.

Paradise Lost - Draconian Times - 25th Anniversary Edition

Hailed as ‘The European Metallica’, the 1995 masterpiece solidified the British band’s position at the top table of British metal. With some success already in the bag, the band’s rising status allowed them to deliver their most accomplished sound to date, and a collection of songs that are magnificently heavy, but with a cool, gothic sheen. It remains Paradise Lost’s most acclaimed and adored body of work, and era of the band.

The CD also sees the band open their vaults and provide a version that comes with an extra disc of bonus and rare, unreleased material from the Draconian Times era. The 25th Anniversary edition features the re-mastered mix of 2011’s Legacy CD. It also comes furnished with new liner notes from journalist and long standing fan Nick Ruskell, a never seen before deep dive into the record’s lyrics and themes from vocalist Nick Holmes, and memories from the band.

Rammstein - Herzeleid (XXV Anniversary Edition - Remastered)

Herzeleid is the debut album by German Neue Deutsche Härte band Rammstein, first released on 25 September 1995 through Motor Music.

CD - Original trackisting single CD including an elaborate cross - digipack in a deluxe slipcase, for the first time in remastered HD sound. The completely revised packaging with numerous new components comes from the original artwork designer Dirk Rudolph. The booklet is also equipped with the original pictures by photographer Praler.

2LP - Original trackisting double LP in a slipcase with 180 gram records in a blue splattered vinyl look. The completely revised packaging with numerous new components comes from the original artwork designer Dirk Rudolph. The booklet is also equipped with the original pictures by photographer Praler.

Requiem For A Dream OST

To coincide with its 20th anniversary, Clint Mansell's haunting score to Darren Aronofsky's 2000 film, Requiem for a Dream, performed by Kronos Quartet, returns to vinyl. This was Mansell’s second of several collaborations with Aronofsky, following 1997’s π, and features arrangements by David Lang of Bang on a Can. The film stars Academy Award-winner Ellen Burstyn, Jared Leto, Jennifer Connelly and Marlon Wayans, and was adapted from the 1978 novel by Hubert Selby, Jr. (Last Exit to Brooklyn), who also wrote the screenplay with Aronofsky. Set on the rusted mean streets of Coney Island, Brooklyn, Requiem for a Dream tells the parallel stories of four people pursuing their dreams of better lives. The reissue features the original soundtrack, plus two bonus tracks.

Skinny Puppy - Last Rights

Last Rights is the seventh studio album by Canadian electro-industrial band Skinny Puppy originally released in March 1992. Last Rights was well received and named by Alternative Press as one of the best albums of the 1990s and was the band's first release to chart on the Billboard 200.

Last Rights saw the band experimenting with two opposite extremes: cacophonous heavy music and gloomy melodies, resulting in moments of industrial weight as well as moments of uncharacteristic softness. The album incorporates some of the band's most impenetrable walls of sound and an eleven-minute track composed almost entirely of manipulated and distorted samples. It spawned two singles, Inquisition and Left Handshake which was distributed under the title Track 10.

Soft Cell - Cruelty Without Beauty

Soft Cell’s 2002 reunion album Cruelty Without Beauty reissue in a new expanded and released on vinyl for the very first time. Long regarded by many fans as an overlooked masterpiece, the album features a lyrical outlook that was as true to Soft Cell’s maturity and perspective back in 2002 as it is relevant and accurate to the world situation in 2020. Harshly honest, fatalistic and bleakly humorous, Cruelty Without Beauty also preserves the band’s highly distinctive and edgy sound, and stands alongside their greatest work. The new 2020 version includes tracks originally destined for the album, but for various reasons not on the final cut. It also includes brand new 2020 versions of album highlights Monoculture, Together Alone, Darker Times and Last Chance, updated this year by Dave Ball. Also included are a number of unreleased live versions of album tracks, plus rare remixes.

The Telescopes - Between Dimensions Vol 2

Nice compilation spread over two albums. 29 Tracks that compiles all their EPS originally released on the Creation, What Goes On, and Cheree.

These New Puritans - Hidden (MMXX)

Domino release the 10-year anniversary of These New Puritans’ Hidden now called Hidden [MMXX] - a re-issue of the original album in its full glory accompanied by new and unreleased material from the Hidden sessions alongside live recordings from the same era.

The album itself was produced by TNP's Jack Barnett and Graham Sutton (Bark Psychosis, Boymerang) and mixed by Dave Cooley (J Dilla, MF DOOM), it draws on both the rhythmic lexicons of dancehall and 20th century post-minimalism, the recording features 6ft Japanese Taiko drums, a thirteen piece brass and woodwind ensemble, sub-heavy beats, prepared piano and a children's choir. The result is equal parts brutal and melancholy, standing the test of time, sounding as pioneering and bold a decade on.

Hidden is a record that crushes together menace and beauty: after the prelude of woodwind that is Time Xone, We Want War remains one of the most startling tracks to be released as a single in this millennium - a sound like swarms of invading, metallic wasps, robotic voices intoning, the martial rattle of layers of drums, Jack Barnett’s vocals an incantation. The militant funk of Three Thousand, strange skittish jazz in Hologram, and Drum Courts - Where Corals Liefeels like an ancient, elegiac folk song carried forth on a storm. A record of intense variety, soul and depth, Hidden is remarkable by anyone’s standards, let alone one made by a group of people barely out of their teens.

McCoy Tyner - The Real McCoy

The Real McCoy is the seventh album by jazz pianist McCoy Tyner and his first released on the Blue Note label. It was recorded on April 21, 1967 following Tyner's departure from the John Coltrane Quartet and features performances by Tyner with Joe Henderson, Ron Carter and Elvin Jones. Producer Alfred Lion recalls the recording session as a "pure jazz session. There is absolutely no concession to commercialism, and there's a deep, passionate love for the music embedded in each of the selections".

Yusuf / Cat Stevens - Mona Bone Jakon

50th anniversay reissue. Back in 1970 and following a period of illness and recuperation, singer-songwriting troubadour Cat Stevens re-emerged with a new record deal with Island Records and a spiritual and artistic rebirth. Mona Bone Jakon, his first album for Island, showcased a markedly different change in direction for Cat, unveiling with it a remarkable set of new compositions that included classics like Trouble, Maybe You’re Right and the UK hit single Lady D’Arbanville.

The Who - Live at Kingston

The Who has one of the greatest rock legacies in music history - they're one of the all-time great live bands, have sold over 100 million records worldwide, and had 10 US and 11 UK top ten albums and 14 UK top ten singles in a career spanning six decades.

Who was mostly recorded in London and Los Angeles during spring and summer 2019 and was co-produced by Pete Townshend and Dave Sardy (who has worked with Noel Gallagher, Oasis, LCD Soundsystem and Gorillaz) with vocal production by Dave Eringa (Manic Street Preachers, Roger Daltrey, Wilko Johnson). Singer Roger Daltrey and guitarist and songwriter Pete Townshend are joined on the album by long-time Who drummer Zak Starkey, bassist Pino Palladino along with contributions from Simon Townshend, Benmont Tench, Carla Azar, Joey Waronker and Gordon Giltrap.

The 2020 deluxe edition features Pete Townshend’s remix of Beads On One String plus The Who Live at Kingston, a special acoustic performance recorded on 14th February 2020, recorded 50 years to the day since the seminal Live at Leeds show.

Here are the best of the rest of the new releases arriving at The Vinyl Whistle this week:

Jamie Cullum - The Pianoman at Christmas

Fresh from winning his first Ivor Novello award for writing the year's best song, the multi platinum-selling musician and multi-instrumentalist Jamie Cullum releases his first festive collection The Pianoman At Christmas. Jamie’s most ambitious album so far, The Pianoman At Christmas features 10 original songs played by 57 of Britain's best musicians, was recorded in Abbey Road's famous Studio 2 and is produced by Greg Wells whose The Greatest Showman soundtrack spent 28 weeks at number 1.

Erasure - Fallen Angel

The Fallen Angel 12" Vinyl collects select remixes from Erasure's The Neon and features reworkings from Georgia and Bright Light Bright Light along with previously unreleased mixes from Initial Talk, Daybreakers and Nimmo. The collection also includes an extended mix by Erasure’s own Vince Clarke. The Limited Edition 12” is pressed on Neon Orange Vinyl and packaged in a printed mirror board sleeve. Includes a high definition download code.

Kelly Finnigan presents A Joyful Sound

The second full length LP from Kelly Finnigan is full of original holiday music. Featuring members of Durand Jones and The Indications and The Dap-Kings. A Joyful Sound is a future soul classic with all the elements of a classic R&B record, but simply with a joyful holiday lean. With an all-star supporting cast of who's who from the contemporary soul scene this record is truly a family affair with Kelly at the wheel. Featuring members of Durand Jones and The Indications, The Dap-Kings, Ghost Funk Orchestra, Monophonics, Thee Sinseers, Orgone, Ikebe Shakedown, Jason Joshua and The Beholders, The True Loves, Neal Francis, Jungle Fire, Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio, Ben Pirani, The Jive Turkeys, The Harlem Gospel Travelers, Rudy De Anda, Alanna Royale, and more! Inspired by records like Phil Spector's A Christmas Gift For You and Rotary Connection's Peace this album will be a record that will appeal not only to lovers of holiday music, but lovers of Soul music in general!

Keeley Forsyth - Photograph

Keeley Forsyth follows up her critically lauded debut album, Debris, with the Photograph EP. Across four tracks the domestic tensions remain, albeit taking a more introspective view. Forsyth’s striking vocals are cocooned within otherworldly synthesisers- they transport her words across continents before snapping back to the room. The walls closing in .There’s an aching sense of detachment, which resonates with the circumstances in which it was written. “I always work from home,” Forsyth explains. “This time, the isolation had a new influence on my lyrical ideas. I was contemplating the idea of homesickness within the home; when life is lived on the domestic grid, in rooms and in tasks. I was looking to reframe the day, to give sound to the picture.” Photograph takes two steps on from Debris’ electronic closer Start Again. Continuing the fruitful working relationship with composer Matthew Bourne and bringing Trestle Records’ Ross Downes into the fray, it hints at the vast possibilities open to Forsyth on her next album, and also brings the late period Scott Walker comparisons into focus, with traditional song structures giving way to something more expansive. Cloaked in darkness but seeking surreal beauty and art in the debris of modern life.

Laura Groves - A Private Road

Bella Union announce the signing of Laura Groves whose new EP, A Private Road. Of the 6-track EP Groves says: “This record, made mostly on my own, became both a channel for the expression of an inner world and an imagined soundtrack to my physical journeys through the city. It is rooted in the stories, atmospheres, mistakes and wrong turns, desires and layers of meaning that run through and play out in the landscapes we inhabit. The songs are snapshots of late night journeys across the river, the sparks of love that transform us and keep us going, the dead ends that the mind can lead us down, the erotic; the visible and invisible places we pass through as they merge and are erased and overwritten. The ability and opportunity to create and connect through music is a gift and I’m so happy to be able to share these new explorations with you.”

Jehst - Heathens

While UK hip-hop has long bowed down to his majesty, Jehst is now addressingHeathens directly, four tracks of venerable penmanship and riposte that includes two recent drops that have kept fans in thrall of “the best British rapper of all time” (NME) and his ceaseless reserves of unequivocal syllables.

Still rock the Nuke Proof, a chugging, deconstructed funk mosaic from Bastien Keb hangs Heathens on the razor blade-sharp shrug of the shoulders. Riding the carousel revolutions as he endorses a “tailor-made rhyme style, wake-and-bake lifestyle”, Jehst ducks and weaves between the gaps of the track until he’s on the verge of making it a religious experience. Jaisu’s frothy jazz vapours for April’s 420 Every Day nudge along playful rhymes with mic remaining on red alert, before Pitch 92 teases a 10 below red rag on the lectern-trashing State of the Union. Subsequently a vein starts to pop on Body Bag, a dislocated, zero gravity freeze ray fired by Jetsun. As adept at making sure he’s “getting paid in full: Eric B and Rakim” as he is at taking orders for toe tags, Billy Brimstone’s psychedelic phlegm comes Michelin-starred: “You’re duck soup, I’m the pot-boiler / You’re ‘bout to see the end sooner than you want, like a plot spoiler”.

Michael Kiwanuka - Solid Ground (Virgil Abloh Remix)

Louis Vuitton Creative Director, Off-White Founder and DJ, Virgil Abloh, remixes Michael Kiwanuka’s Solid Ground.

Earlier this year, Abloh selected Solid Ground to introduce his Louis Vuitton Fall/Winter 2020 Paris Fashion Week Show, and has extended his appreciation of the track with the remix.

Logic - No Pressure

No Pressure is the sixth and final studio album by Logic, produced by No ID. It's a back to basics release with plump rhythms and frank and funny lyrics. Think a mix of Under Pressure, The Incredible True Story and his early mixtapes.

Joyner Lucas - ADHD

Debut album ADHD from x2 Grammy-nominated Joyner Lucas, who has collaborated with artists such as Eminem (who cited Joyner as "one of his favourite rappers of all time"), Timbaland, Young Thug, Logic and Chris Brown. He’s also received co-signs from Rihanna, LeBron James, Lil Baby, Snoop Dog, Mark Wahlberg and more.

Alex Maas - Luca

The music of Alex Maas has always mesmerised. Now, on his soul-baring solo debut Luca, the Texan and Black Angel's singer journey is taking an equally hypnotic detour along the wild trails of his indigenous homestead. Driven by the force of nature, each phase of life is celebrated through songs of love, hope, human connection whilst navigating perils of modern society and tentatively facing the darkness.

Like the echoes of nature that Alex grew up around Luca dances like dandelions on a breeze but is spiked with a squint of suspicion as its percussion shimmers like that cautionary rattlesnake. His album crackles with the vintage warmth of Grace Slick or smoky melodies of Nico, rising like a campfire’s embers whilst taking cues from Beth Gibbons, Sam Cooke, Lee Hazlewood, Vashti Bunyan, Mississippi John Hurt, and Huun-Huur-Tu.

Recorded at Space Flight Studios in Austin Luca was an evolutionary project with some early songs worked up from their acoustic origins whilst others were written more recently. Co-produced with long-time collaborator Brett Orrison, the record began its transformation from loner folk leanings to a worldlier embrace. Calling upon members of The Black Angels, Wide Spread Panic, Mien, the Sword, Jack White’s band the Eels. Stepping out on his own Maas is walking along his own untrodden path, offering an honest and true account of what has passed and what may yet come. Luca sings from the soul, is believable and could well be everything the world needs right now.

Mammut - Ride The Fire

Ride The Fire is the fifth album from Icelandic quintet Mammut. The album is the band’s second release in English and was recorded between London and their hometown of Reykjavík.

Ride The Fire was produced by fellow Icelander Árni Hjörvar of The Vaccines – a close friend of the band, and another reinforcement for their close-knit group. It was then mixed by Sam Slater, who produced the ‘Joker’ and ‘Chernobyl’ scores with Oscar-winner Hildur Guðnadóttir, and mastered by Mandy Parnell, who has worked with fellow Icelandic luminaries Björk and Sigur Rós.

Ride The Fire represents a sonic and philosophical shift for Mammut, and a number of firsts for the band. Recorded in Iceland and London in August and September 2019, it is the first album they have made between two countries. The sessions also saw a new approach to writing and recording, with parts of songs being worked on by band members separately rather than together, garage-band style. But this new approach didn’t create distance between the five-piece – it reinforced the trust between them. They learned to be less precious with parts they had written, improvising around them and trusting their bandmates’ changes and interpretations. “There was a mutual respect, and a trust in the journey,” says Dýradóttir. “No ideas were unwelcome. It was like research. We have grown to know ourselves more as a collective.” Each song on Ride The Fire is rich with imagery, and the band have picked out its ‘characters’ in retrospect, to form a visual accompaniment to the album – a way of structuring what they have made to navigate through the uncertainty. They liken this building of personal mythology to religion, but also stress its core playfulness – an important theme of the album. “Astrology and religion are a way of grownups playing and building imagery,” says Dýradóttir. “We were thinking about sorcery and spells, and creating our own stories. We were playing.” The ten tracks on Ride The Fire represent a suite of starting points, prompts, spells – an invitation to join the band on a non-hierarchical journey into the unknown.

Nas - King's Disease

King’s Disease sets the stage for a reimagined future while paying homage to legacy, highlighting the prowess of the King’s experience. Through a diverse range of uplifting, hard hitting, and melodic tracks, King’s Disease is a full bodied project that showcases both the battles and the brilliance of life on a pedestal. The title is emblematic of the privilege and responsibility of kingship, acknowledging that not even royalty is immune to suffering. King’s Disease examines the balance of life - At the highest of heights we see a righteous King, and at the lowest of lows, we see that even the perceived elite can fall prey to disease.

King’s Disease marks Nas’ first new album in 2 years. The album is entirely produced by Hit-Boy (JAY-Z, Beyoncé, Travis Scott) and Hit-Boy and Gabriel “G Code” Zardes serve as the albums co-executive producers.

NERD - Nothing

Nearly two years since the release of their last album Seeing Sounds, NERD returned with their fourth studio album Nothing. Debut single Hot n Fun is a bounce-filled, sweaty summer club track that has echoes of old-school roller-skating jams. Producers and guests include Ben and Ted (aka Mansions on the Moon), Yelawolf, Kenna, Nelly Furtado and more.

NPO Radio 2 Top 2000 The 90s - Various

Featuring classics from Iggy Pop / Manic Street Preachers / Soundgarden / Portishead / Paul Weller / Therapy? / The Cranberries / Scorpions / Robbie Williams / Live / Liquido / Faithless / Ronan Keating / K's Choice.

NPO Radio 2 Top 2000 The 00s - Various

Featuring classics from Mark Ronson / Amy Winehouse / Maroon 5 / Beth Hart / Outkast / Keane / Duffy / Mark Knopfler / Dido / Amy MacDonald / Stereophonics / Isle Delange / Caro Emerald / Within Temptation / Anastacia / Elvis vs JXL

Red City Radio - Paradise

Red City Radio is an American punk rock band formed in Oklahoma in 2007. The band’s current members include Garrett Dale (Lead vocals, guitar), Ryan Donovan (Guitar, backing vocals), Derik Envy (bass) and Dallas Tidwell (Drums, backing vocals).

Paradise is Red City Radio's first studio album in five years (since 2015's s/t) making this their fourth studio LP. The album is produced by All American Rejects guitarist Mike Kennerty. The band have toured worldwide, supported acts including Hot Water Music, Taking Back Sunday, The Lawrence Arms, MXPX, Less Than Jake, Anti-Flag and New Found Glory.


On his twelfth studio LP in nearly 20 years, Reks sounds just as hungry and passionate on T.H.I.N.G.S. (The Hunger Inside Never Gets Satisfied) as he did when Along Came The Chosen dropped back in 2001. Perhaps even more so. There seems to be a fire that gets lit under the Lawrence, MA native whenever he begins crafting a new album.“While my conceptualizing process has grown over the years, the actual approach to getting started has remained consistent,” Rekssays. “There’s a youthful eagerness that comes over me every time I’m about to start a new record.” That feeling is palpable throughout T.H.I.N.G.S., an album bursting with everything you’d want from a Reks record, but also so much more.

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