Here’s the A List for this week: my favourite 10 tracks at the moment.
Every Sunday I post a new A List, an insight into what I’m loving right now. This has been a ridiculously good week for new music so there’s a fair bit of change from last week. I try not to be too hype-tastic about music – as the blog goes on there will be weeks when I’m less sure about stuff or periods where I feel there isn’t a huge amount of quality music – but I feel the stuff I’ve posted since Monday has been of a very high standard.
So let’s get to it. Here is this week’s A List:
1. The Black Madonna – He is the Voice I Hear (New Entry)
A lullaby for insomniacs. The Black Madonna has brought created a musical cosmic masterpiece that weaves in jazz, disco and strings. It’s a stunning record that has a hugely cinematic quality; bold in design and divine in execution. Well worth reading this interview with her from Mixmag.
2. Bonobo – No Reason (New Entry)
The Bonobo album is giving a lot of my friends a lot of pleasure, and No Reason is a real highlight. Mournful vocals are matched by elegant electronic touches; it’s a claustrophobic listen that leaves you wanting to curl up in a blanket and hide away from the world.
3. LOYAL – Moving As One (New Entry)
Last Wednesday’s Track of the Day, LOYAL’s Moving As One has plenty of layers that span different genres and enough musical ability to bring it together seamlessly.
4. Esther Joy Lane – Ever Ever (New Entry)
I was a little unfair to Esther Joy Lane on Thursday when this was Track of the Day, as I hadn’t heard her debut EP from 2015, which is well worth checking out and has a different sound to the two tracks I’d heard. Ever Ever is a cracking song that – as I said on Twitter – gets better with every listen.
5. Army of Bones – Don’t Be Long (Down 4)
An unexpected indie treat. Strong pulsing guitars and a polished melody makes this a fine January listen. It struck me this week that this sounds an awful lot like Richard Ashcroft’s Song for the Lovers, which is no bad thing at all.
6. Harlea – You Don’t Get It (New Entry)
Our first ever Track of the Day on the site, You Don’t Get It has a sturdy blues rock base and adds in a splash of rock and roll and a small pinch of pop. It’s confident, familiar and distinctive, not an easy combination to pull off.
7. The XX – Dangerous (New Entry)
A tremendous statement of intent to kick off new album I See You. I struggle to think of another band who have so effectively stated a change in direction and a stepping-up of their sound as The XX have with Dangerous.
8. Ed Sheeran – Shape of You (Down 6)
A straight up pop banger originally written for Rihanna. This is perfectly simple, yet highly effective. He’s still blowing away streaming and download records, and with a new album due soon, he’s could make 2017 his year.
9. Dan Croll – Away From Today (New Entry)
A slightly disorientating indie pop track that could easily have been take from Bombay Bicycle Club’s back catalogue. It plays with the senses a little, never quite settling. But for the ridiculously abrupt ending, I rather like this.
10. Code Orange – Bleeding in the Blur (Down 7)
A nice chunk of dirty rock and roll, with waves of feedback and a dark, menacing vibe. This is my first introduction to Code Orange, but I look forward to hearing more of their stuff.
You can listen to all ten tracks here: