This is something of a bumper edition this week, with four products on display for your delectation. But first, let's have a look at how last week's single, Gossip's 'Heavy Cross', performed yesterday...er, no.40. And people say they're a one hit wonder act with no hope of a repeat. The biggest shock was seeing Little Boots' debut album, Hands, drop from no.5 to no.40 in its second week. Fickle, you people are very fickle.
Music For Men by Gossip
Yeah, so 'Heavy Cross' may have only sold 48 copies or something but this Rick Rubin-produced album is packed with punk-funk-disco-diva singles in waiting. Beth Ditto we all know about - big voice, big waist, big face - but it's her two faceless bandmates (although drummer Hannah's face appears on the cover) that come into their own, offering up elastic grooves and some fiery guitar lines. So what if they only have one hit single, that's one more then you'll ever have.
SECRETLY BORROW THIS FROM A FRIEND
Everything Is New by Jack Peñate
We're not going to go through it all again, but basically Peñate used to be a bit rubbish and then he hooked up with a good producer (Paul Epworth) and decided to reinvent his sound using some of today's more successful genres; bit of tropicalia here, a dash of Afrobeat there, a smattering of house and just a dose of Peruvian jazz-folk fusion. All in all, a tasty concoction. Opener 'Pull My Heart Away' is possibly the best opening track of any album listed on this page today.
YOU MUST MAKE A CHOICE
As we all know, 2009 is the year of the woman or some such nonsense. Little Boots, Lady Gaga, Paloma Faith, Pixie Lott, etc, etc, all have a vagina and a voice each and are all signed to record companies and are releasing music for us to buy. Add to that list La Roux and Florence & The Machine, two people with vaginas, voices AND red hair, making them bitter rivals in the world of music. Some are calling their chart battle the musical equivalent of Israel versus Palestine, but we see it more as Venus versus Serena; two equally talented women, both capable of great things serving up a couple of aces...or something.
'Rabbit Heart (Raise It Up)' by Florence & The Machine
Twinkly harps, pounding drums and a voice you could wrap yourself in for weeks, this is a BIG sounding song. Written after a falling out with her record company - they asked her to make something more immediate - it's a song to be sung from the rooftops, possibly whilst drunk.
'Bulletproof' by La Roux
From the layered, lush sounds of Florence to the brittle, tinny sounds of La Roux. 'Bulletproof' is the single that was meant to make up for the failure of 'In For The Kill', but seeing as that peaked at no.2 the chances of this turning La Roux into a genuine pop are 'fair' to 'fucking obviously going to happen'.