Category: Tunes

The Royal Scam – Steely Dan, AOTM October 2019

Rolling Stones Magazine cleverly point out that The Royal Scam’s tracks, with the exception of ‘The Fez’, concern escape from some recently committed crime or other. The subject of outlaws drug dealers and cheaters is rich for exploration and Steely Dan do so immaculately. This was one of the most enjoyable albums of the month to date. The sheer variety and innovative sound which expanded on an already great roster of albums (this being their fifth) created something truly special. But the Dan’s outlaws are also moral ones, guilt-ridden over comparatively minor sins. (Last time out, remember, Katy’s chief...

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The English Riviera, Metronomy – AOTM September 2019

From the opening bars, one can tell that this offering from Metronomy is really quite singular. I have admired this British band for some time but hitherto only knew about their singles. Delving into their albums was nothing short of sheer joy. Matthew insists Summer 08 is their best. Indeed they released their latest, Metronomy Forever, this month. We eagerly awaited being able to listen to it but were disappointed overall. In a way it is a relief to hear comparatively less impressive music as it puts our most loved albums into perspective. Anyway, on with the review. The...

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Framed, The Sensational Alex Harvey Band – AOTM August 2019

When my father suggests I listen to an album, I make a note of it and put it aside in my parental notes box. This box also includes such chestnuts of advice as “you must be careful with money” and “don’t get hit by cars on the Hagley Road”. Much like these nuggets of wisdom, introducing me to SAHB was a prime example of ‘Pater knows best’. Framed is a masterpiece to be sure. And the fact it is their debut is just astonishing. Stage set for something far more theatrical, he unleashed the extraordinary textures of Framed with the Sensational...

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Nina Simone, Little Girl Blue – AOTM July 2019

Music has the onerous and often overwhelming power to move us. Call it a primordial instinctive response or learned appreciation, we all have the potential to truly appreciate music for what it is: a great gift. I am moved to tears more often than I’d like to admit by the awesome beauty of music and how fortunate we, in the developed world, are to be able to enjoy it so effortlessly. To that end, I will attempt to describe this momentous work, Little Girl Blue, and hope that you, too, shall be awed by the never ending talents of...

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Kate Tempest, The Book of Traps and Lessons – AOTM June 2019

This is a difficult album to listen to. I should say so immediately. St Nick’s brilliant album of the month review of Five Leaves Left goes some way to explaining why: Great art has the power to change us, or so they say. But sometimes with our favourite artists we find they have not changed us, but rather that they have acted as a mirror, reflecting back to us an undistorted image of ourselves. Five Leaves Left Review, St Nick The Book of Traps and Lessons is the fourth studio album of spoken word poet and Ted Hughes Award...

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