Django Django – Born Under Saturn (Because)
Why you should listen: The four-piece’s second album shoots for sparkling psychedelia, electropop touches and the odd Kraftwerk-like flourish.
It might not be for you if … You aren’t convinced by this indie-house combination – it all smacks of Friendly Fires circa 2011.
What we said: “Django Django sound like a musical representation of what filmmakers call “the magic hour”, when the light is suffused with gold, and lyric after lyric here refers to sun, sky or light”, wrote Michael Hann, in the Guardian. Read Kitty Empire’s three-star review from the Observer, here.
Palma Violets – Danger in the Club (Rough Trade)
Why you should listen: Moving from the firmly indie territory of their debut, Palma Violets add post-punk swagger to a collection of more polished tracks.
It might not be for you if … You can’t stand Sam Fryer and Chilli Jenson’s slightly slurred, Pete Doherty and Carl Barât-like vocal delivery.
What we said: “They reference everyone from Graham Parker to the Damned, and hurl in everything from Doorsy organs to twangy-guitared surf-rock, delivering each song with epic, music-hall rowdiness”, wrote Dave Simpson, in the Guardian.
Andreya Triana – Giants (Counter)
Why you should listen: With her husky voice and soul-pop style, singer-songwriter Triana doesn’t rewrite the rulebook but makes music both pleasant and sweet.
It might not be for you if… You reckon we already have Dusty Springfield, Amy Winehouse and Aretha Franklin – do we need this album?
What we said: “While enjoyable, Giants doesn’t take the genre to new heights; it’s easy-listening music with a sprinkling of bouncy, singalong tracks,” wrote Corinne Jones, in the Observer.
My Morning Jacket – The Waterfall (ATO)
Why you should listen: Jim James and co are back after four years, sounding big and bold on this return to form: it’s American rock writ large.
It might not be for you if … You oddly enjoyed the experimental nature of 2008’s Evil Urges, or have never warmed to James’s soaring and dramatic voice.
What we said: “The Kentucky band’s tendency towards stadium-friendliness, evinced by the imploring Believe (Nobody Knows), is offset by moments of moving intimacy, such as Like a River, a haunting response to Stinson beach, the Californian beauty spot in which the album was recorded,” wrote Jon Dennis, in the Guardian. Click here for Paul Mardles’s three-star review in the Observer.
Todd Rundgren/Emil Nikolaisen/Hans Peter
Lindstrøm – Rundanns (Smalltown Supersound)
Why you should listen: Rundgren joins forces with Nikolaisen and Lindstrøm on this 39-minute piece of galactic-sounding, disco-inspired music, split into 12 tracks. Classify it loosely as Pharoah Sanders’s Karma for the space age.
It might not be for you if … You easily lose patience with genre-spanning music like this, when it feels more like a sci-fi soundtrack than a standalone album.
What we said: “The vibe is more often trippy and transcendental than indulgent, whereas even the most far-out moments fail to disguise Rundgren’s pop nous,” wrote Tim Jonze, in the Guardian.
This week also sees the new banjoless release from Mumford & Sons (two stars in the Guardian, three in the Observer), a new offering from Other Lives and new material from super-loud rock trio Metz (more on that elsewhere on the site). What are you looking forward to hearing this week?