These are the albums we've been loving this month.
The second month of the year has gone by so quickly, and with, unfortunately, only a handful of good albums. No matter; February has been about experimentation, raw emotion and pure fun and these six records demonstrate those qualities wonderfully.
HMLTD - West of Eden
These kooky Londoners are one of our favourite new bands at the moment thanks to their addictive debut experimental rock album West of Eden. There's something different in every track and it's so strongly millenial that it's almost a caricature of itself - but that's by no means a bad thing. This is a band who admittedly haven't yet found their sound, but we're happy to listen to them trying to find it.
Add these albums to your waiting list now.
This month looks to be all about long-awaited returns from established artists. These are are seven most eagerly anticipated albums coming up in February 2020 - though we have a feeling these are just the tip of the icerberg...
La Roux - Supervision
It feels like a lifetime since her last album Trouble In Paradise was released, but six years on La Roux is finally here with album three Supervision. Now the solo project of Elly Jackson, we don't know entirely what to expect, though her latest single Automatic Driver gives us positive vibes.
Continue reading: Upcoming Releases: What Albums Are We Waiting For This Month?
Plus, Taylor Swift scoops eight Billboard Awards and Stevie Wonder closes Hangout in style in our weekly round-up...
This Week In Albums... There was only album anyone was really talking about wasn't there? Daft Punk's much anticipated fourth LP Random Access Memories was streamed early after it leaked on the internet allowing the world's media their chance to get in quick with their gut-check reactions. Our man Joe Wilde was a little more reflective in his assessments though, and found much to love about the French duo's comeback - even if hasn't ended up being the classic that so many people were hoping for. He wrote: "Guy-Manuel and Thomas are perfectionists in every sense, and whilst the album itself isn't a perfect listen, it is still a thoroughly rewarding and worthwhile one; and what more could we and the robots have asked for?"
There were some other much-vaunted French types releasing their comeback album this Spring too; it's a case of if it ain't broke don't fix it for Phoenix. Hoewever that means we once again get an LP of intelligent pop that's as catchy as it is inventive. Jim Pusey found it to be an enjoyable listen, although he felt it lacked something that its mainstream-breaking predecessor Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix had; he commented "There's much here to like, but it lacks some of the charm that made Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix quite so endearing."
South East Londoner King Krule has become the latest act to perform as part of Fred Perry's SubSonic shows, playing his deeply mellow 2012 single 'Rock Bottom' live. The shows are part of Fred Perry Subculture's new musical initiative surrounding live music and celebrates the company's long held place in fashion and culture since the fifties.
'Rock Bottom' has an almost bluesy hint to it, a melodious amalgamation of pretty guitar riffs and steady drum rhythms that are harshly punctuated by the rough, low-pitched, punk vocal of Archy Marshall. The intensity of the track is intensified tenfold by the atmospheric stage performance which sees an emotional profundity pour out and captivate his eager audience.
With a presence like Krule's, it's no wonder he manage to sell-out his first major UK tour. We are currently looking forward to his debut album under this moniker (having previously called himself Zoo Kid as a teenager) entitled 'Six Feet Beneath The Moon' as well as some further dates across the UK and Europe including a handful of festivals such as London's Field Day Festival, Germany's Melt Festival and Denmark's Roskilde Festival.
Continue: King Krule - Rock Bottom (Live) Video
Live At Leeds - the metropolitan music festival held annually across a variety of venues in Leeds on the first bank holiday weekend of May - has just added some huge bands to its roster.
Indie fans better take note, as just a portion of the line up includes Rudimental, Everything Everything, The Pigeon Detectives, The Vaccines, Tribes, AlunaGeorge, The Staves, Darwin Deez, Little Comets, King Krule, Laura Mvula, Swim Deep, The 1975 and Peace. LAL continues to enforce its remit of pushing local bands to the fore while providing national acts to draw in the crowds. It's a real music lover's affair, and this year looks set to carry on the tradition. And with tickets from just £22.50, it's affordable too.
The Pigeon Detectives - having just announced album number 4, Rudimental - will look to bring their uncompromising brand of indie to the proceedings, while The Vaccines will be playing a separate ticketed event on the Sunday of Live at Leeds with special support from TOY and more names to be added.