The xx – I See You review

Romantic tension has always played a part in the xx’s music. A little over four years since their last album, the group’s latest work, I See You, addresses this subject more directly than ever, with a soul-bearing collection of songs about reconciliation and the start of something new. Continue reading

Jam of the Week: London Grammar – Rooting for You

Kicking off 2017 in operatic style is the return of London Grammar.

Guitarist Dan Rothman, multi-instrumentalist Dominic ‘Dot’ Major and vocalist Hannah Reid rocked the hearts of all who heard their melancholy music when they debuted four years ago. The trio’s album, If You Wait, contained deep pools of emotion capable of bringing tears to the eyes. Continue reading

Jam of the Week: The Hempolics – Me Love to Sing

Closing out the bitter slog that was 2016 are a band who are bringing the sunshine grooves of the Caribbean to the urban metropolis. The Hempolics are a little-known ska band from London, who have steadily been crafting their sound for over a decade now. They have received attention from radio, not to mention the fellow musicians, such as La Roux, Eliza Doolittle and Paolo Nutini. Continue reading

Jam of the Week: Marika Hackman – Driving Under Stars

British folk singer Marika Hackman released her haunting debut album, We Slept at Last in 2015. That album was all original material, none of which appeared on her trio of EPs which preceded it.

Continuing her zeal for new music, Hackman has come up with spins on some Christmas favourites and a couple original songs for her first ever holiday EP. Continue reading

Laura Mvula – The Dreaming Room review

Laura Mvula’s powerful and nuanced Sing to the Moon was a remarkable album made even more remarkable by the fact that it was her debut. Her second album doesn’t manage the all-out excellence of her first time, but it still a superb album in its own right that shouldn’t be missed. Continue reading

Xylaroo – Sweetooth review

Xylaroo are Holly and Coco Chant: two sisters making marvellously imaginative music which draws from an exotic cocktail of musical influences. The two sisters have lived in half a dozen countries, including Papua New Guinea, Hong Kong and Sri Lanka, before settling – for the moment – in Canning Town, London. Their debut album, Sweetooth, is a journey that’s profoundly broad, wildly original and downright delicious on every level. Continue reading

Daughter – Not to Disappear review

Daughter 2015 press photo (800x450)Daughter’s 2013 album, If You Leave, was a graceful arrival by frontwoman Elena Tonra, guitarist Igor Haefeli and drummer Remi Aguilella. And who can forget the group’s killer cover of Daft Punk’s ‘Get Lucky’. Three years on, Not to Disappear is a record of boy problems and a stride for independence. Continue reading

Jorja Smith – Project 11 EP review

Jorja Smith, Afropunk London 2016, Ally Pally, by Aaron Lee (960x540)The confidence that resonates from Jorja Smith quickly leaves you defenceless. She’s an 18-year-old going on 28, singing about urban life, young love and society’s uncomfortable injustices.

Propelled by the response to ‘Blue Lights’, a short tale of a young person walking unwelcome streets, which garnered much acclaim for her at the start of the year, Smith has apparently received plenty of offers from major labels, but has so far declined them all. She prefers do her own thing. The strength of her first EP, Project 11, is good reason for this rising talent to continue being an independent woman. Continue reading