-- if you don't like music(k), we don't like you --

Monday, 30 November 2009

New Musick Monday

As the yuletide approaches, it's getting harder and harder to find any music to recommend, unless the new Westlife album floats your boat, in which case the virtual door is that way. So, this may well be the final New Musick Monday of 2009 *stunned silence*. So, let's, for one last time, do a little recap on last week, shall we? Brigadier Ambrose performed well given the fact the album is self-released and wasn't available in shops (that happens in the new year), whilst Rihanna's album somewhat under-performed by entering outside the top 10 (although the single made it to number 6, so what does that tell us? No, really, what does that tell us?). Lady GaGa was more successful, entering at number 7 and celebrating at least six songs in the top 75. Well done the GaGa.


Lungs (Deluxe box set edition) by Florence & The Machine

Around this time, record labels decide it's best to make money by releasing albums by talent show contestants, old boybands or re-packaging an existing album to guilt trip genuine fans into buying the album again. This re-release of the brilliant Lungs (look out for it in Musick's rundown of the top 20 albums of 2009, coming, er, ahem, well, kind of soon-ish), adds three extra discs that encompass a live album, remixes, covers, demos and a DVD with all the videos and a live show. PLUS, you get expanded artwork and an essay by David Vann, who, as we all know, is a very talented author. Better than putting it in a slipcase and adding a couple of b-sides don't you think?


Untitled by R Kelly

First of all, please click here to be mortified. That's 'Pregnant', one of the many delicate ballads R Kelly has recorded for his new sex opus. This, let's not forget, is the man currently battling charges for having sex with a minor. Here are some of the choice lyrics that Kelly uses to make the pre-teens swoon (ALLEGEDLY!!):
"Girl you make me wanna get you pregnant...Knock you up, pregnant, Knock you up"
"Shes more than a mistress enough to handle my business / Now put that girl in my kitchen"
"Now I ain’t got nothing to do tonight, I gotta wait for my crew / I just wanna put some in you"

'Forest Green Oh Forest Green' by Holly Miranda

OK, so this came out a few weeks ago but it's so great we thought it best to try and get it a few more downloads. Produced by Dave Sitek and featuring members of TV On The Radio, this is the first single taken from Miranda's forthcoming album, The Magician's Private Library. It features some gorgeous vocals, some bells and indeed some brass. Here she is doing a gorgeous version of 'Ex-Factor' by Lauryn Hill:

Friday, 27 November 2009

Nick Drake

This song came out in America about six months ago, but we've only just stumbled across it because, frankly, we're massive idiots.

It's called 'Best I Ever Had' and it's by Canadian rapper/singer, Drake. It's the kind of low-slung, sex jam (ewwww, what an awful phrase) that before you listen to it you need to perform some kind of inner monologue in which you pretend to be the presenter of a West Coast radio show. "This joint right here is for Kanesha, you know who you are baby. You're the best I've ever had, for real". Or something. If not, imagine Tim Westwood introducing it with a hilariously irrelevant sound effect (BOOM) and/or jumble of street lingo.

Which ever way you cut it, the beat is SICK. The video, however, is pretty appalling and was directed by Kanye West...

As someone on youtube pointed out; "breast i ever had". The wag.

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Erik Hassle competition!?!

Drum roll please...

We are pleased to announce Musick's first every competition! Whoop, whoop. Now, we're not asking you to draw us a picture, write us a poem or take part in an elaborate pyramid scheme in the hope of stealing your money and running away to live in Antigua. No, all we ask is that you, er, send us an email.

Those kind people at Island Records are giving us two free tickets to see 'bound to be big in 2010' Swedish singer, Erik Hassle. If you're unfamiliar with his work you should listen to this and this, or re-read something we did about him here.

The gig isn't like a normal gig, it's like a party but with a real life pop star performing. It's in a secret location (all we know is that it's an apartment!) in East London and no-one will know where it will be until the last minute. You will also need a password to get in. It will be like Skins, only real. There will be free alcohol on tap, so you have to be over 18 otherwise we'll all get in trouble with the law and we don't want that do we?

Here's a (very small) poster that contains a lot of the information we've just given, but in a much more graphic style:

The gig is on Thursday 17th December and all you need to do is email mcragg@hotmail.com to be in with a chance of winning. You might get to meet Musick too, although don't let that put you off.

Also, you can download a video of Erik covering 'Someday' by The Strokes by clicking here.

Next week we'll be giving away a hot air balloon ride with Little Boots.

Humdrum's not dead

We've done a few things on Theophilus London before, but so far all his songs have either been appearances on remixes or songs that heavily feature some sampling or chunks of other songs. 'Humdrum Town' is his first song 'proper' and it's every which way amazing.

Here's the song in question:

Once again, the guy's struggling with the whole concept of making money from his music and is allowing you, the lucky listener, to download the track for free from here.


Monday, 23 November 2009

Sexy chick

Kelis is back!!! Not just back like when she came back on this occasion, but back properly, with a new single taken from a new album.

'Acapella' is produced by David Guetta and is quite literally the best thing she's done since 'Milkshake'. In case you're still wondering, yes it is a massive club banger.

Expect this to be everywhere in the discotheques early next year. We can't wait to shake our groove thing to this.

New Musick Monday

We all knew last week would be a success, in fact, we made sure of it. Echo sold over 160,000 copies in its first week, to debut at number 1, but that's about half of what her last album sold in the same period. Now, we're not suggesting that the wheels are falling off Leona's career per se, but what she lacks that a lot of other pop stars have is a definite personality. Songs like 'Happy' don't help matters. Speaking of personalities, Will Young's best of crashed in at, er, no. 9, which is hardly the work of a TV talent show alumnus, but we're pretty sure that's all he can hope for now. The Arctic Monkeys single seems to be missing from the top 40, which must be some kind of blip, right?


Fuzzo by Brigadier Ambrose

OK, confession time, this band are friends of the blog. Not just, "oh yeah, we met them at a party, they seem like nice guys" kind of friends, but proper "we went to school together" type friends. We feel the need to make this clear from the outset given the fact that we love this album so much it's going to seem like nepotism either way. You'll assume we're friends even if we weren't when we say that Fuzzo is one of the best debuts of 2009. Influenced by surrealist British comedy just as much as they are by bands like Blur, Belle & Sebastian and Pavement, they've crafted an album that keeps one eye on the everyday and the other turned skywards. It also features this lyric; "Silences don't really mean a great deal anymore/ One minute for footballers and two minutes for war / Three for terrorist atrocities / Four for the death of Morrissey". Kind of says it all really.


Rated R by Rihanna

The Fame Monster by Lady GaGa

Two of pop's biggest characters return with albums on the same day, one trying to build a new image after some well-publicised personal problems and the other cementing her status as 2009's best megastar. Rated R is a darker, denser affair than Rihanna's previous efforts, featuring far more aggressive, almost sadomasochistic imagery. Guns are licked, fired and drawn on skin (she has a tattoo of one on her hip), whilst love is variously depicted as dead, deadly or, er, Spanish ('Te Amo'). WARNING: This album features will.i.am. Lady GaGa's The Fame Monster on the other hand should be subtitled "what this? Oh I knocked this up in my lunch break", such is the run of form she seems to be on. Eight brand new songs, four potential singles, Beyoncé drops by for a brief cameo and somewhere Madonna dies a little inside.


Fall Be Kind EP by Animal Collective

This 5-track EP is a little bit darker, a little bit denser than their last album...oh, have we written that before today? Erm, it's their equivalent of Rihanna's Rated R album, only with longer songs and slightly more droning. Very good as ever, in other words.

Friday, 20 November 2009

Scream Queen

This story makes us very nervous and excited.

Lest we remind you that last time Lady GaGa performed live she was left hanging from the rafters covered in fake blood. PLEASE can we let this happen again in front of the Queen.

If not, we'd like these scenarios to occur:

- Lady GaGa comes out dressed as the Queen before stripping off to reveal a dress made of £50 notes
- Lady GaGa comes out dressed in nothing but a see-through coat and the Queen's silhouette shaved into her pubic hair
- Lady GaGa agrees to come out dressed in a demure two-piece, which then sets on fire as she runs from one side of the stage to the other screaming "Charles, I wanna take a ride on your disco stick"
- The Queen comes out dressed as Lady GaGa thus diluting any controversy


Kissing Cousins

This is the video for Vampire Weekend's new single 'Cousins'. It turns out that this was just a 'teaser' or 'taster' for their new album, Contra, which is a shame as it's far more interesting than this. When that familiar guitar figure kicks in at the 45 second mark we felt a strange sense of sadness and disappointment, like when Bambi's mum died.

The video is much more interesting, what with all the camera work and face-changing technology (well, they use masks, which is probably the least technological aspect about the video, but it sure is fun). It was directed by Garth Jennings, one half of Hammer & Tongs.

Thursday, 19 November 2009

So good they made it twice

This is the frankly incredible new video for the Charlotte Gainsbourg and Beck duet, 'Heaven Can Wait':

This is another version of the frankly incredible new video for the Charlotte Gainsbourg and Beck duet, 'Heaven Can Wait':

There are so many highlights it's impossible to point them all out. What we do wonder is how the hell they pitched the idea for this video?

Director: "So, there will be a man with pancakes for a head, a guy in a giant pair of tights playing tennis, a dinosaur with a wig on (in the bath) and a giant green troll creature being held at knife point".

Record label: "We were going to go with them performing it in front of a white background, but perhaps your idea is better. We'll get back to you".

The best thing ever!

Björk - Björk!!! - has contributed a song for the soundtrack to the new Moomin movie - MOOMIN MOVIE!!

The song is called 'The Comet Song' and was co-written with Sjon.

There's more here.

We are very excited - EXCITED!! - about this.

Monday, 16 November 2009

New Musick Monday

We weren't expecting great things from our selections last week, so, as you will see from this week's picks, we're going all out for the chart glory this week. Amerie was our most bankable bet and she was nowhere, Joe Goddard's album probably sold about 11 copies and the Girls single missed the top 75 too. We're trying not to be too despondent, but it's difficult.


Echo by Leona Lewis

This week can rightly be labelled 'run up to Christmas' week. For those lamenting the inclusion of someone like Leona, the only other options were that dire-sounding Them Crooked Vultures album or the new Stereophonics collection...So, we thought we'd include this so that if you were having problems deciding on what to get your mum or your older sister for Christmas, this might help you out. Echo isn't exactly what you'd call experimental, but there are moments when that voice wraps itself round an undeniable melody and you get a strange feeling in your stomach (see 'Outta My Head'). 'Happy' is still really dull though.


The Hits by Will Young

We will be buying this for our Nan and we suggest you do the same. Well-executed, intelligent pop music sung by a nice young man who doesn't swear or 'carry on' like all those other ghastly singers and who has a handful of genuinely great singles. For example; the piano ballad, 'All Time Love', the career-defining 'Leave Right Now' and the underrated 'Who Am I'. What you will need to do, however, is put a little note on the present label, warning your elderly relatives not to listen to the first two songs. 'Evergreen' is an abomination and Will's jazzy cover of 'Light My Fire' is about as jazzy as Simon Cowell's record collection. After that, the rest is plain sailing.


'Cornerstone' by Arctic Monkeys

After the lukewarm reaction to 'Crying Lightning' and the general frustration at the lack of tunes on Humbug, Arctic Monkeys release what their record label will hope is the song to reverse their sales slump (the album sits at no. 75 this week). Luckily, it's a brilliant, beautifully phrased singalong that benefits from the relatively stripped back production and Alex Turner's characterful croon. Revelling in their new-found desire to sell less records, however, the band have made a video that makes Turner look like an androgynous electrical salesperson from the Eastern bloc.

Friday, 13 November 2009

P-p-p pick up a Penguin

Penguin Prison has been blogged about a lot recently, but not by us. That's because we're lazy and notoriously behind the times.

This doesn't make this single any less great.

Perfect for a depressingly grey Friday afternoon.

One of the blogs that does feature him a lot is called Neon Gold Blog (the label also releases his music), and it's so much better than most blogs out there that it's kind of depressing. You can download a lot of great things from there, free of charge. We recommend the 'Kids' remix by Chiddy Bang and 'Havin' My Baby' by Think About Life. (Expect both to feature on here soon, because that's how we roll; someone else does the leg work and we swoop in and steal the glory).

Bad song/Great song interface, pt 1

This is a song by Beyoncé featuring Lady GaGa. It's a bit shit. This is it:

Reasons it's bad:
1). It wasn't a great song when it appeared on I Am...Sasha Fierce over a year ago and, unsurprisingly, it hasn't grown into a good song over night.
2). Lady GaGa doesn't really suit it and her vocals have obviously just been tacked onto it rather quickly (they even sound louder in the mix then the rest).
3). Videophones are a bit creepy aren't they? Not as good as telephones.

This is a song by Lady GaGa featuring Beyoncé. It's really great. This is it:

Reasons it's great:
1). It's was originally written for Britney who didn't want it and was then offered the guest spot on it but then decided she'd quite like it on her own forthcoming Greatest Hits package and GaGa said "No, I'm going to get Beyoncé on it instead".
2). It's got three choruses, Beyoncé's rap bit is brilliant and the whole thing thunders along at a rate of knots.
3). As we said above, telephones are great.

Bad song/Great song interface, pt 2

Alicia Keys has a new single out. It's shit. This is it:

Reasons it's bad:
1). The sentiment is basically "I've got so much money and wealth and luxury goods but if I haven't got a boyfriend then it's all meaningless". Boo-hoo, Alicia. If only you hadn't brought the third plasma screen in your bathroom, he might have stayed. Also, being rich and lonely is better than being poor and lonely so please move on.
2). It sounds a lot like her last top 10 single, 'No One', so is quite cynically a rip off of a previous hit
3). It's just really dull, isn't it?

This is Alicia Keys' next single. It's much better. This is it:

Reasons it's good:
1). It's all about being broken-hearted - like the shit song - but makes that sound interesting and fresh, and not the subject of millions and millions of other songs
2). She sounds genuinely engaged with the song and not like she's recorded it on the loo like the last one.
3). It's better than the first single.

Wednesday, 11 November 2009


Lady GaGa
is like marmite. That's what people say, right? That you either love her or hate her? Well, we're allergic to marmite, so that makes no sense. We don't break out into a rash when 'Just Dance' comes on, or slowly start to choke when the 'Paparazzi' video starts. By strutting around in her pants for the cameras and seemingly being EVERYWHERE she's become the pop star that everyone's heard of and got an opinion on. This is a good thing, given that these kind of worldwide megastars are increasingly rare and who wants a pop star that is, you know, down to earth and just, like, really nice and just feels blessed to be doing what they're doing, etc.

Anywho, she'll be releasing a new(ish) album in November called The Fame Monster. This is one of the amazing covers, taken by fashion photographer Hedi Slimane:

The album features 8 new tracks (including a duet with Beyoncé) as well as the original Fame album that everyone who wants it probably has already. Still, it's better than just chucking on some remixes and a DVD with three videos on it. This is the first single, 'Bad Romance', which has a video that is, frankly, barmy. Watch it until the end to get the full impact:


Daddy or (Hot) Chip?

This is a new song from Hot Chip that you probably read about yesterday. So, why didn't we do this blog post yesterday we hear all 10 of you cry? Were we off at a swanky party? Did we get VIP tickets to an amazing gig? Were we injecting heroin with one of JLS? No, we just couldn't connect to the internet last night due to BT's incompetence...sometimes life is that prosaic.

It's rather good, isn't it? It starts off a bit Hot Chip by numbers, but then blossoms into a really lovely chorus that makes us want to sway a bit. Nice organ sounds too. 'Take It In' may or may not be the first single from the band's new album, One Life Stand, which is out in February.

Monday, 9 November 2009

New order?

This is a rather lovely slice of synthpop from Matador-signings, Cold Cave. It's the title track from their new album.

No, that is literally it. One post made from copying and pasting a link from one website to another.

New Musick Monday

What an unmitigated disaster last week was. For a start, the Marina single is actually out on the 16 November (yeah, thanks nme.com!) and the much-touted and intermittently amazing Julian Casablancas album only went and missed the top 40 altogether. Just goes to show that oodles of 'proper' music press coverage (Musick included, naturellement) and a killer first single means diddly squat when your fanbase are only interested in the next album by the band you're meant to be fronting. The Nirvana reissue didn't shift many units either, but there was also a live album out at the same time and that managed to sell quite well, so we're claiming a small victory. Hurrah! This week's a bit of a struggle to be honest...


Harvest Festival by Joe Goddard

Joe Goddard is the bearded one from Hot Chip. Not the singer, but the one who sometimes wears those retina-destroying woolly jumpers and worked on some of the early (and best) stuff by Little Boots. Harvest Festival is a diverting, kind of enjoyable slice of warm electronica that isn't exactly light years away from his day job, but does miss the pop sensibilities of their best bits. So, when we say 'buy this' we kind of mean 'buy this if you've got some vouchers left over or your Gran has found a fiver down the back of the sofa and given it to you thinking it was a tissue'.


In Love & War by Amerie

For those not on top of who's who in the great post-Beyoncé feisty female R&B challenge that took place about five years ago, Amerie is the woman that made this piece of perfection. She then went on to release some more songs but everyone just wanted to listen to '1 Thing' so nothing much ever happened career-wise. This is her fourth album and though it's not exactly trying new things, it does feature some pretty special moments, not least the first single, 'Heard 'Em All'. Again, you might not want to actually buy this. Oh, we don't know, just do what you want.


'Laura' by Girls

Girls are that band with scraggly hair and the backstory that everyone from Pitchfork to, well, other similarly minded music websites are calling 'the greatest thing of 2009'. This is the second single from their new album, Album, and it's a rather lovely concoction, all jangly guitar and little boy lost lyrics. The singer sounds like Elvis Costello, but looks like one of Hanson had they turned to crystal meth after 'Mmmbop'.

Friday, 6 November 2009

Let's Beyonest.

We've always had a slight issue with Beyoncé. Not because we don't like her, it's just that we want the best from her. If pop is a school - with Peter Andre cleaning the loos - then Beyoncé is the head girl, the one with all the ability, the one that everyone loves to hate and aims to be like. It's always been a slight disappointment to us that she's never previously been able to match the peak of 'Crazy In Love', her first solo single proper, and everything since then has been left lying limp in its wake. 'Deja Vu' was mildly diverting at first, 'Irreplaceable' is alright, 'Naughty Girl' has some appeal, but it wasn't until 'Single Ladies' and then 'Sweet Dreams' that we thought, "yes, Beyonce, this is you living up to your promise, well done. Now, where's your Geography homework?".

One thing that no-one can deny is that on stage Beyoncé is just about the most exciting thing to watch since, well, Michael Jackson. That is some accolade coming from us, believe it. You want truck loads of energy? Check. You want a sassiness that borders arrogance but keeps it in check? Er, check. You want a voice that sounds like honey, mixed with butter and a shot of vodka? What!? Check. Award shows just aren't the same without Beyoncé strolling in, shedding some clothes (she's not compromising her Christianity though) and putting on a show that makes Lady GaGa look like Stacey Solomon.

This is enough proof surely?

That look at the end that says, "yeah, you knows it. Can't no-one mess with the Beyoncé". We imagine she does refer to herself in the third person too: "Jay-Z, can you please get Beyoncé a biscuit? Yes, a wagon wheel would be fine for Beyoncé".

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

Press release as news story

Lightspeed Champion
is back, back, back! You've been waiting for this, right? In all honesty, we really like his debut, Falling Off The Lavender Bridge, so this is actually pretty exciting. Not exciting, actually, more mildly diverting...

This is some of PR bumf:

Lightspeed’s early leaning towards American country dressings is traded here for a palette that draws on classical music and even musical theatre. Producer and mixer Ben Allen (Animal Collective, Gnarls Barkley) assembles the eclectic grab-bag of influences: joltingly ‘70s guitar and synth sounds, classical piano, Greek choruses shouting reprisals, and at least one ukelele-driven moment.

(The album is called Life is Sweet! Nice To Meet You, by the way).

This is the tracklisting:

1. Dead Head Blues
2. Marlene
3. There’s Nothing Underwater
4. Intermission
5. Faculty Of Fears
6. The Big Guns Of Highsmith
7. Romart
8. I Don’t Want To Wake Up Alone
9. Madame Van Damme
10. Smooth Day (At The Library)
11. Intermission 2
12. Sweetheart
13. Etude Op. 3 'Goodnight Michalek'
14. Middle Of The Dark
15. A Bridge and a Goodbye

This is a teaser for the video for the first single, 'Marlene':

The album is out on the 1st February 2010.

nme.com eat your heart out!

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Murphy's Law

Róisín Murphy's last album, Overpowered, was something of a lost pop classic. Mixing warm electronica with pop hooks Kylie would claw Dannii's eyes out for, it seemed destined to catapult Murphy back to the upper reaches of the charts after her time with Moloko. Of course, this didn't happen and despite releasing nearly half a dozen singles, Murphy was dropped by her label and forced to watch as Little Boots et al came along to fill the gap marked 'intelligent electro pop starlet'.

Murphy is currently focusing on her new creation (she's 9 months pregnant), but has found the time to announce the release of a taster single, entitled 'Orally Fixated'. And what an odd concoction it is. Over stuttering synths and cheap beats, Murphy intones "Eat me/ Drink me" before something resembling a song begins to take shape. This then merges into something Madonna would have rejected circa 1986, before a guitar solo comes crashing in to up the what-the-fuck ante.

Something tells us she's signed with an indie label now.

Yea ha!

Yeasayer are a bunch of guys who make music with instruments and their mouths. They have released an album, which collects together some of these recordings and now they're about to release another one. In order to generate some excitement surrounding this release, the band have decided to pick one song from the bunch and let you, the public, download it for free. Their hope is that once you've heard the song you will think, "that was jolly nice, I might purchase the album once it's released".

It helps that 'Ambling Alp' is proper bangin' all up in our collective grills. Ecouté:

You hear some Animal Collective in there? We do too. But it's a genuine leap forward for a band who previously seemed intent on tying themselves in knots in order to hide a catchy melody. We particularly enjoyed the last 30 seconds, where it sounds like someone's having a spasm on the keyboard.

The album, Odd Blood, is out in February 2010.

Heaven on earth

A little while ago we mentioned that Charlotte Gainsbourg had been working with Scientoligist-it's-ok-to-like, Beck, on her new album IRM. We also posted the title track, which was released as a free download a few weeks back. Now, the first single proper, 'Heaven Can Wait', has emerged and it's a lovely, plinky plonky strumalong, with Beck and Gainsbourg sharing vocals over a Beatles-esque melody and some rather lovely brass.

Please note, smoking isn't cool unless your French. Fin.

Monday, 2 November 2009


New Rihanna songs are like black-hued buses these days. You wait - well you don't actually have to wait that long the rate she releases material - for one and two come along at once. No sooner has lead single 'Russian Roulette' been premiered, then the second single, 'Wait Your Turn (The Wait Is Ova)' leaks.

Anyone still hankering for the Rihanna of old - all baggy jeans and the desire to hear a song played louder - should probably learn to deal with the new look Rihanna pretty quickly (that's a picture of the new album cover below). Gone is the softness and girl-next-door prettiness and in comes the razor-sharp haircut, jagged make-up and lots and lots of black. This track is another moody, mid-paced stomper, but has a certain edginess that 'Russian Roulette' lacks.

You get the feeling she could do a song entitled 'I love Salt & Vinegar crisps' and she'd still be asked if it was about Chris Brown. "Yes, you say it's about crisps, but why salt and vinegar? Isn't Chris Brown allergic to vinegar? Are you acting out some kind of revenge attack? It's all incredibly subtle". Possibly.

New Musick Monday

Mmm, so we're going through a bit of a barren spell. Not only did the amazing 'Islands' by The xx not dent that charts, but the band have had to cancel a number of shows due to exhaustion. So, they're putting in all this work, schlepping about the planet to play their music in tiny clubs and what do you do to thank them? You conspire to dump them in the black hole that is 'not inside the top 40'. As for the others, Devendra missed out altogether as did Hudson Mohawke, who should console himself with the fact that he's not Mr Hudson, who a friend of Musick had him confused with. Every cloud...


Phrazes For The Young by Julian Casablancas

What a very odd record. Taking in everything from '80s synth-pop to country melancholia, Phrazes For The Young finds Casablancas at a bit of a crossroads. With The Strokes on hiatus (although a new album is in the works), the guy that writes all their songs has decided to take eight new compositions and bolt on some new instrumentation, mess around with song length (nearly all of them are over five minutes) and generally try and confuse us. THIS IS A GOOD THING. Single 11th Dimension is the obvious highlight, but the giddy rush of River of Brakelights and the closing Tourist - complete with horn blasts - run it close.


Bleach (Deluxe Edition) by Nirvana

Back in 1989, before 'Smells Like Teen Spirit', and before 'grunge' became the new fashion, Nirvana's Bleach was just another album on Sub Pop's roster. Slowly, it sold 30,000 copies, enough to warrant a follow-up, and the rest is history. Twenty years later (twenty years!?) Sub Pop are releasing this deluxe version, complete with rare live recordings and new artwork. The original album is a template for what Nirvana were about to become, featuring caustic shards of rage and frustration mixed with melodic moments such as the sublime 'About A Girl'.


'Mowgli's Road' by Marina & The Diamonds

EDIT: This isn't out until 16 November...we can only apologise. Not to pass the buck, but it was all NME's fault.

Cuckoo! When exam results are released there are usually headlines screaming things like, "Boys results decline as girls catch them up" or some such. The implication being that girls are only doing better because boys are doing worse. This trend seems to be moving to music, where certain parts of the media seem to be under the impression that the recent glut of talented female singers is only happening because the boys have either been off chasing spaceships (Robbie) or venturing into films (Justin). What's really happening is that these women are just making better music at the moment, and 'Mowgli's Road' - all jaunty piano and skyscraping chorus - is leagues above anything made by someone with a penis this week.