Albums of the Week... Frank Ocean's major label debut was released early online amidst a storm of hype and news coverage. For those of you who have been in an internet-blackout for the last fortnight, the week prior to the release of 'Channel Orange,' Frank Ocean published a Tumblr post in which he revealed that his first love was a man. The news wires went crazy and all of a sudden, Ocean was at the centre of a media frenzy. Amidst all the chatter, he found time to perform on Jimmy Fallon and the next day, Channel Orange was unleashed unto the internet. What we said about Channel Orange: "At times, his personality rises above the parapet. In between these high points, though, Ocean's inaugural long-player feels sketchy, as though he's yet to settle into his niche."
Left Fire is the latest album from experimental rock band Arcane Roots. It opens in an unsettling fashion, with 'Aus Blauderen Verederen, Dus Moet Ik.' Lacking in traditional song structure, the song gives a taste of what's to come. Our reviewer, Sam Saunders focuses on the album's qualities: the band's innovative approach to their instruments and songwriting. "Highlights of this album? You Are is complete genius. An amazing song, very well put together and performed. Overall, a stunning and talented release and hopefully the music scene will be seeing more of Arcane Roots very soon."
A Week in Video... Hoping to capitalize on the success of their previous single, 'We Are Young,' Fun have followed up with 'Some Nights.' The video plays out like an homage to a civil war drama, with the band playing in the midst of a battle. Think sepia-tinted drama, punctuated with gunshots and you're halfway there.
Wiley's latest video sees the UK rapper in the centre of a glamorous pool party. He's onto a pretty sweet ticket because he appears to be one of approximately three males at a party populated almost entirely by very attractive young women. And a dog licking an ice cream. Wiley's turned his back on his pure grime tracks and seems to be aiming for the charts with this poppy number.
Taylor Swift has lent her dulcet tones to B.o.B for this emotive number. 'Both of Us' sees the rapper in reflective mode, wondering why he pays so much attention to fashion and the cost of clothes and other material matters. "Why so shallow?" he asks. Why indeed. Swift is in an equally poignant mood, singing "one day / I will be strong enough / to lift not one / but both of us."
Features Of The Week... Cleveland four-piece Walk The Moon are poised for success, with the release of their debut album and Contactmusic spoke to Nicholas Petricca about the release of the album, coming over to the UK and their penchant for face paints. "There's a scene in the movie Hook where they're all getting ready for war and painting faces - it's playful danger - and that's just something we did for the one show we did for the video, but it was just so much fun we just kept doing it."
Canterbury's 'Lounge on the Farm' festival was one of the few UK festivals so far this summer not have been entirely hampered by adverse weather. Musically, the highlights of the weekend included Summer Camp, Vinyl Black Stilettos and Ghostpoet. "Simply put, Lounge On The Farm 2012 was a harmonious triumph of eclectic and engaging talent showcased in a wonderfully chilled environment."
The niche mixture of "twee indie and twee culture (trains, real ale, mixtape swaps)" has ensured that Indietracks has really left its mark on the UK festival circuit. With a line-up full of quintessential cutesy indie pop, those that stood out were 'Allo Darlin, The Pains of Being Pure at Heart and Tigercats. "An enemy of invention it may be, but Indietracks remains the friendliest festival in the UK if not the entire world. More importantly, from start to finish it also remains the most fun."
Music in the News... It's a double-whammy this week on the lawsuit front. Not only is Madonna getting sued for allegedly failing to get clearance on a sample that she used in 'Vogue' (22 years ago!) but an aggrieved mother of a Justin Bieber fan is talking the young pop star to court, too. Stacey Wilson Betts has claimed that a 'sound blast' at a 2010 Bieber concert led to her suffering from tinnitus and other hearing problems.
Ed Sheeran has admitted the personal nature of his songs has caused him to lose a few friends.
All I Want For Christmas is widely regarded as one of the best festive tunes every year
Pearl Jam announced 14 dates in the UK and Europe in June and July 2018.