KILLERS: Spaceman. Scattergun pop rock that quickly takes off without ever going out of this world.
POLLY SCATTERGOOD: Other Too Endless. OK, a song title to conjure with – and then drop – but the soft pop weaves a certain magical spell. It could be she’s away with the fairies – she’s certainly walking along the musical equivalent to the Yellow Brick Road.
EMMY THE GREAT: First Love. Idiosyncratic folk that captures the moment through fanciful eyes – a girl seduced to the sound of Leonard Cohen’s often-covered Hallelujah. Surely it takes more than that. Her debut album – also called First Love – is full of savage observations and stark admissions cloaked in disarmingly simple arrangements.
ESKIMO FIRES: Be There. Nice touch with this one – download it from their website for free. Great marketing ploy – if you like it, you’ll be drawn in. Think along the lines of Embrace who hail from Brighouse. These Eskimos come from Derby.
CHIODOS: Bone Palace Ballet: Grand Coda. The Michigan band’s arty progressive rock album has been touted by the critics as “an arresting piece of post-modern musical art’’ and “a frighteningly mighty album of exhilarating musicianship and inspired lyrical introspection that plays out like an evening at some glorious experimental-hardcore cabaret.” That’s a mouthful way of saying you’ve no idea what’s coming next – one moment soft, gentle, even caressing and the next screamcore terror. You know they’re thinking well out of the box with song titles like I Didn’t Say I Was Powerful, I Said I Was A Wizard and Life Is A Perception Of Your Own Reality. Singer Craig Owens switches at will from pitch-perfect melody to blood-gurgling rant. The title Bone Palace Ballet comes from a poem. Nice.
SPENCER McGARRY SEASON: Spencer McGarry Season. The first in a six-album series – if it gets that far – that aims to record each one with a different theme. Spencer, the man, found himself in 2005 with no band but 60 songs and roughly split them up into six styles. This first one is basic 60s rock pop and the sound reflects his interest in the Kinks, mod and Motown through to late 70s New Wave and XTC in the 80s. If you like any of that lot, you’ll find yourself caught up in the spirit of Spencer’s project. As the album unfolds the sound builds from just drums, bass and guitar at the start to piano and even clarinet by the end.