Jay-Z & Kanye West
No Church In The Wild (Roc-A-Fella/Roc Nation/Island Def Jam)
The dark groove of Watch The Throne's standout track is a saturnine meditation on big themes. Frank Ocean ponders the secular quandary of moral agency, Jay invokes Plato's Euthyphro, and Kanye reminisces about last night's threesome. Murky, unsettled and intense, it's a hell of a song. Romain Gavras's riotous video reflects the menacing energy and avoids further investigation of who did what to Yeezy's ding-a-ling.
LO HI (Domino)
This compost of gloopy beats and psych-dub loveliness comes from Wisconsin and was probably recorded under a toadstool, or in a friend's beard. They have an official Facebook page, which is unexpected, although it does list their current location as "epic vibeland". Unlikely to set the world on fire, except as a soundtrack to woozy smokers accidentally burning their flats down after too much hashish moussaka.
Call My Name (Polydor)
"How do you think I feel when you call my name?" demands Cheryl Cole, presumably referencing the fact she's recently mislaid half of it. Given the level of fan'n'pap clamour surrounding her, my best guess would be "beleaguered paranoia". Calvin Harris's production tries to emulate his success on Rihanna's We Found Love but, erm, doesn't.
Top Of The World (Warner)
Smiler was put on this Earth (specifically Woolwich) to rhyme, and he's on ebullient form. The hardcore electro backing sounds like an android's dream of electric sheep eating other electric sheep, in a K-hole. It's a good thing! He doesn't actually sound like he's smiling, because happy is not cool. Smiler's agile flow and chest-thumping triumphalism leaven the track though, in what should be his crossover hit.
I Wish I Never Met You (Virgin/EMI)
"I wish I never met you/That's how much I regret you", regrets Sam Sparro, mourning the demise of his relationship with English grammar. "It's been 16 hours and three long years," he elaborates. No one measures time like this apart from maverick leprechaun Prince and very small children. Still, Sparro's weary tone and the martial percussion play off each other to mildly interesting effect. NB: he rhymes "crackhead" with "blackhead" at one point (see earlier Prince/small children criticism).
Black Heart (Warner)
"Daddy, I've fallen for a monster/He's got a black heart", wail Stooshe in this, the soundtrack to Disney's Ted Bundy Story (possibly). It's an open homage to 60s girl group melodrama, but the trouble with sounding like the Spice Girls covering the Supremes is that you sound like the Spice Girls covering the Supremes