ALBUM OF THE MONTH: Cabaret starring Eddie Redmayne and Jessie Buckley (January 2023)

WORTH A LOOK?: *****

Our sister sees a lot of West End musicals and so we take her to see this production of Cabaret at the Kit Kat Club and she later writes on Facebook: ‘I think it was possibly the best show I have ever seen.’

  • Read on for reasons including how this production is ripe for a successful Broadway transfer
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ALBUM OF THE MONTH: Sophie Ellis Bextor’s Kitchen Disco: Live At The London Palladium (November 2022)

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

RELEASED: 25 November 2022

TRACKLIST: Take Me Home; Disco Inferno; Wild Forever; All Night Long; Hypnotized; Mixed Up World; Young Blood; There Are Worse Things; Love Is A Camera; Dancing Queen; Get Over You/Lady/Groovejet; Crying At The Discoteque; Like A Prayer; Heartbreak (Make Me A Dancer); Murder On The Dancefloor; Our House; Favourite Things

Live albums are always a fascinating snapshot of an act at a particular moment in time and this gig was much-postponed thanks to Covid but 1 we gave 5* to back in March.

  • Read on for reasons including why this gig was 1 of our favourite things of 2022
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ALBUM OF THE MONTH: Hold The Girl by Rina Sawayama (October 2022)

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

TRACKLIST: Minor Feelings; Hold The Girl; This Hell; Catch Me In The Air; Forgiveness; Holy (‘Til You Let Me Go); Your Age; Imagining; Frankenstein; Hurricanes; Send My Love To John; Phantom; To Be Alive

There’s no mistaking the ambition of Sawayama’s 2nd album and with an Elton John collaboration under her belt she will doubtless hope Hold The Girl builds on the success of her debut.

  • Read on for reasons including how to see Sawayama on tour this autumn
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ALBUM OF THE MONTH: Autofiction by Suede (September 2022) and GIG REVIEW: Suede at PRYZM

WORTH A LOOK?: *****/****

WHEN?: Thursday 15 September 2022, touring until 25 March 2023

TRACKLIST: She Still Leads Me On; Personality Disorder; 15 Again; The Only Way I Can Love You; That Boy On The Stage; Drive Myself Home; Black Ice; Shadow Self; It’s Always The Quiet Ones; What Am I Without You?; Turn Off Your Brain And Yell

SETLIST: She Still Leads Me On; Personality Disorder; 15 Again; That Boy On The Stage; I Don’t Know How To Reach You; Black Ice; Shadow Self; What Am I Without You?; Sabotage; Outsiders; It Starts And Ends With You; Turn Off Your Brain And Yell; Life Is Golden

It’s the night before Suede release their 9th studio album Autofiction and the run-up to it could have not been more perfect if more than a little rough around the edges – although that, of course, is the point.

  • Read on for reasons including why Autofiction is exactly the sort of album Kate Bush would make if she was wanting to go punk
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ALBUM OF THE MONTH: Prioritise Pleasure by Self Esteem (August 2022)

WORTH A LOOK?: ****1/2

TRACKLIST: I’m Fine; Fucking Wizardry; Hobbies 2; Prioritise Pleasure; I Do This All The Time; Moody; Still Reigning; How Can I Help You?; It’s Been A While; The 345; John Elton; You Forever; Just Kids

A cheat, perhaps? It’s taken us a while to ride the buzz to this sophomore album but thanks to a friend’s recommendation this has barely been off our playlist all summer.

  • Read on for reasons including how we’d love for Prioritise Pleasure to win this year’s Mercury Prize
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ALBUM OF THE MONTH: Masquerade by Bananarama (July 2022)

WORTH A LOOK?: ****1/2

TRACKLIST: Favourite; Stay Wild; Velvet Lies; Masquerade; Running With The Night; Bad Love; Let’s Go Outside; Brand New; Need A Little More Time; Forever Young; Waiting For The Sun To Shine

Masquerade is, quite simply, Bananarama’s best album since their 1987 hits-packed, career-high Wow!

  • Read on for reasons including how to see the band on tour this summer
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ALBUM OF THE MONTH: Bunny Mode by Jaguar Jonze (June 2022)

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

TRACKLIST: Know My Name; Who Died And Made You King; Swallow; Drawing Lines; Trigger Happy; Loud; Little Fires; Cut; Not Yours; Man-made Monster

Little Fires was the jury winner in this year’s Eurovision selection show Australia Decides and it was our pick too thanks to its Beatles/Radiohead vibe springing into uptempo angst.

  • Read on for reasons including how this is good enough to find an international audience
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ALBUM OF THE MONTH: Dance Fever by Florence and the Machine (May 2022)

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

TRACKLIST: King; Free; Choreomania; Back In Town; Girls Against God; Dream Girl Evil; Prayer Factory; Cassandra; Heaven Is Here; Daffodil; My Love; Restraint; The Bomb; Morning Elvis

Choreomania is a social phenomena that took place on mainland Europe between the 14th and 17th centuries where sometimes thousands of people would gather and dance into a frenzy that would end through exhaustion or injury.

  • Read on for reasons including how to see F+TM on tour later this year
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ALBUM OF THE MONTH: Wet Leg by Wet Leg (April 2022)

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

TRACKLIST: Being In Love; Chaise Longue; Angelica; I Don’t Wanna Go Out; Wet Dream; Convincing; Loving You; UR Mum; Oh No; Piece Of Shit; Supermarket; Too Late Now

Rhian Teasdale and Hester Chambers named their band after a saying used by Isle of Wight residents to describe non-islanders, that they had a ‘wet leg’ from getting off the boat.

  • Read on for reasons including where to see Wet Leg on tour in the UK this year
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ALBUM OF THE MONTH: Tomorrow’s Yesterdays by Little Boots (March 2022)

WORTH A LOOK?: ****1/2

TRACKLIST: Love The Beginning; Silver Balloons; Landline; Back To Mine; Crying On The Inside; Heavenly; Deborah; Out (Out); Want You Back; Nothing Ever Changes; Tomorrow’s Yesterdays

Basking in these 11 tracks, Little Boots’ – real name Victoria Hesketh – love for all kinds of pop music becomes clear and even she has admitted in recent interviews that working with ABBA influenced this album leaving her thinking: ‘What would Benny do?’

  • Read on for reasons including where to see Boots perform this year
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