ALBUM OF THE MONTH: Madame X by Madonna (June 2019)

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

OUT: 14/6/19

TRACKLIST: Medellin; Dark Ballet; God Control; Future; Batuka; Killers Who Are Partying; Crave; Crazy; Come Alive; Faz Gostoso; Bitch I’m Loca; I Don’t Search I Find; I Rise

It’s been a good month for albums and The Divine Comedy and Mark Ronson were both vying for this month’s best LP but in the end we awarded the accolade to the Queen of Pop who plays 15 London Palladium shows early next year.

  • Read on for reasons including how this is Madonna’s best album for 14 years

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ALBUM OF THE MONTH: Love + Fear by Marina (May 2019)

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

OUT: 26/4/19

TRACKLIST: Handmade Heaven; Superstar; Orange Trees; Baby; Enjoy Your Life; True; To Be Human; End Of The Earth; Believe In Love; Life Is Strange; You; Karma; Emotional Machine; Too Afraid; No More Suckers; Soft To Be Strong

Earlier this year we were at a Q&A with Marina in London about her 4th album, the 1st since 2015’s Froot.

  • Read on for reasons including why To Be Human is the key track here

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ALBUM REVIEW: The Song Diaries by Sophie Ellis-Bextor

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

OUT: 15/3/19

TRACKLIST: Groovejet; Take Me Home; Murder On The Dancefloor; Move This Mountain; Music Gets The Best Of Me; Mixed Up World; Catch You; Me And My Imagination; Today the Sun’s On Us; Heartbreak (Make Me A Dancer); Bittersweet; Not Giving Up On Love; Youngblood; Love Is A Camera; Wild Forever; A Pessimist Is Never Disappointed; Love Is You; Take Me Home; Murder On the Dancefloor

The use of orchestras in pop brings to mind for us some of music’s most thrilling moments from yesteryear: ABC’s Lexicon Of Love album, Left To My Own Devices by Pet Shop Boys or the first two LPs by My Life Story.

  • Read on for reasons including where you can see Sophie’s orchestra on tour in the UK this year

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ALBUM OF THE MONTH: Sucker Punch by Sigrid (March 2019)

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

OUT: 8/3/19

TRACKLIST: Sucker Punch;  Mine Right Now; Basic; Strangers; Don’t Feel Like Crying; Level Up; Sight Of You; In Vain; Don’t Kill My Vibe; Business Dinners; Never Mine; Dynamite

We 1st saw Sigrid live last year at the 02 Shepherd’s Bush Empire and it was album closer Dynamite which most stood out.

  • Read on for reasons including where to see Sigrid on tour in the UK in 2019

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ALBUM REVIEW: A Northern Soul by Sheridan Smith

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

RELEASED: 2/11/18 (UK)

RUNNING ORDER: A Northern Soul; Handle With Care; Priceless; Are You Just Sleeping; Remedy In The Melody; Rock Bottom; Why Can’t I Fall In Love; Ain’t That Funny; Sweetest Of Thieves; Listen To The Rain; The One; Don’t Beg For Love

Smith’s 1st album Sheridan was last year’s 2nd best selling debut by a UK woman, behind only Dua Lipa’s Brit Award winner.

  • Read on for reasons including where to buy tickets for Sheridan’s One Night Only at The O2 and UK tour

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ALBUM REVIEW: Chris by Christine And The Queens

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

OUT: 21/9/18

TRACKLIST: Comme Si; Girlfriend; The Walker; Doesn’t Matter; 5 Dollars; Goya Soda; Damn; What’s-her-face; Feel So Good; Make Some Sense; The Stranger

We 1st saw Christine And The Queens live at Glastonbury two years ago just hours after the result of the UK’s Brexit referendum had become clear.

  • Read on for reasons including where you can see the band on tour this Autumn

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ALBUM REVIEW: Palo Santo by Years & Years

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

OUT: 6/7/18

TRACKLIST: Sanctify; Hallelujah: All For You; Karma; Hypnotised; Rendezvous; If You’re Over Me; Preacher; Lucky Escape; Palo Santo; Here; Howl; Don’t Panic; Up In Flames

It’s been no secret that Years & Years have been struggling to follow up their 2015 chart-topping album Communion and now it’s here Palo Santo sounds more like frontman Olly Alexander’s debut solo album.

  • Read on for reasons including details of Tuesday’s album launch party

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ALBUM REVIEW: High As Hope by Florence And The Machine

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

OUT: 29/6/18

TRACKLIST: June; Hunger; South London Forever: Big God; Sky Full Of Song; Grace: Patricia; 100 Years; The End Of Love: No Choir

Third album How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful was our favourite of 2015 and Florence And The Machine’s Glastonbury Festival set was our highlight of that year for us, so High As Hope has a lot to live up to.

  • Read on for reasons including how the bombast of their last album is turned down

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ALBUM REVIEW: Mind Expansion by THANKS

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

OUT (in the UK): 16/3/18

TRACKLIST: Mind Expansion; I Can Get; Sunshine; Boney’s Theme; Dizzy; Livin’ My Life; Drive In; New Brew; Good Thing; Peace Out

Great Danes Alphabeat brought their pop fizz to three fantastic albums and bowed out of the charts all too prematurely.

  • Read on for reasons including why this is the best pop album of 2018 so far

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ALBUM REVIEW: Home Counties by Saint Etienne

WORTH A LOOK?: *****

OUT: now

TRACKLIST: The Reunion; Something New; Magpie Eyes; Whyteleafe; Dive; Church Pew Furniture Restorer; Take It All In; Popmaster; Underneath The Apple Tree; Out Of My Mind; After Hebden; Breakneck Hill; Heather; Sports Report; Train Drivers In Eyeliner; Unopened Fanmail; What Kind Of World; Sweet Arcadia; Angel Of Woodhatch

Saint Etienne are now out on tour, we’ve had a look at a recent setlist and are disappointed that only five songs from this impressive collection made it to their current live shows.

  • Read on for reasons including why this album evokes early Saint Etienne LPs

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