Hmm… the use of the word “Summer” might be a bit strong, but these tracks are helping us cope with the fallout of Brexit, the political theatre show we’ve watched recently, way too many deaths of music legends and a rotten mud filled festival season. Andy Murray did win Wimbledon… maybe things are on the up? (EDIT: Since I started writing this piece, we’ve had a heatwave. You may thank me by sharing this blog!)
1) Radiohead – Burn The Witch
One of the big events in music is the arrival of an album from Radiohead via non-standard methods. This time there were clever hints, postcards to fans, instagram clips and the least child friendly use of children’s characters you’re likely to see. Striking, haunting, wailing, Burn The Witch is a thrilling statement that one the industry’s superior movers and shakers are back.
2) James Blake – My Willing Heart
In the same week, James Blake also dropped his monster 17 track album of experimental, non-conformist music. A challenging and at times baffling creation, this track shows off the exceptional voice of the boy Blake. Every wobble and sound wave is a delight.
3) Biffy Clyro – Wolves of Winter
A monster offering from the Scottish rock behemoths. The title is all a bit Game Of Thrones and you half expect the lads to each have a personal dire wolf and be walking along the Great Wall looking for White Walkers. Fabulous to see rock music topping the album charts.
4) The Stone Roses – Beautiful Thing
Although All For One missed the mark slightly as an opening offering, this track has the old Roses magic touch – gentle, melodic, the sort that makes your walk have a Manchester swagger.
5) Calvin Harris and Dizzee Rascal – Hype
The duo have previously paired up successfully for the wonderful Pass Out, and this recreates that magic. Calvin Harris has a knack of making crossover music to hook in to a whole spectrum of listeners, including those like me who are baffled by the singles chart most of the time.
6) Opal Blue – Taking My Love Away
Stylistically on point with current music trends. Are they potential Calvins of the future?
7) Kaiser Chiefs – Parachute
A surprising change of direction from the Yorkshire lads, moving towards electronic music and love, and away from guitars and politics. Pool party with Ricky anyone?
8) The Coral – Miss Fortune
Indie perfection from one of the best albums of the year, Distance Inbetween. When I picked that one up to review for GIGsoup, little did I know that it would be such a wonderful gift! Impossible to dislike.
9) We Are Scientists – Buckle
Another touch of indie magic. It seems the chaps are in “biologist” mode in this video, with their messy investigation of all things foodie.
10) Oasis – D’You Know What I Mean? NG’s 2016 Rethink
To quote Noel, “As the years went by I’d started to accept that the tracks on Be Here Now were in fact insanely long … too long! Someone (I can’t remember who) had the idea that we re-visit and re-edit the album for posterity’s sake. We got as far as the first track before we couldn’t be arsed and gave up. It does sound f*cking mega though!” No disagreement from me on that point.