Thursday, 16 July 2009

Upbeat no more

UPBEAT is now no more.
Thanks to everyone who's read the column or contributed to it over the past year-and-a-bit.
Don't forget, you can still keep up to the minute with the music world at Sound Advice.
So long, and thanks for all the discs.

Orb having a ball

• THE mighty Orb will be round the charts again with a new album, out on September 7.
Baghdad Batteries sees the return of the electronica legends, who virtually invented the ambient house genre.
• No record collection will be complete without a copy of Complete Me, the new album from Frankmusik.
The emerging popstar’s debut album, out on August 3, includes the hit single Three Little Words.
• Elephant Stone, ex-High Dials guitarist Rishi Dhir’s new band, have released a first album, The Seven Seas.
And you can download a free track, I Am Blind, by visiting
• Club brand Pacha is set to release a triple-CD of the hittest dance tracks around.
The Ibiza collection, out on August 3, features hits from the likes of David Guetta, Simian Mobile Disco, Empire Of The Sun and Fedde Le Grande.
• Jordin Sparks, American Idol winner, has put out a new album.
Battlefield, which features the smash hit of the same name, is in stores now.
• They’re not from Manchester, and there’s only five of them - but don’t let that put you off Manchester Orchestra.
The Atlantan grunge band’s latest album Mean Everything To Nothing is a must-have for rock fans.
• Kid British, who mix ska, indie and rap, release a full length album on September 14.
It Was This Or Football will feature their current single Our House Is Dadless.
• Good grief! If you like yoru house hard, then Goodgreef Xtra Hard is the collectiong for you.
The album, mixed by Lisa Lashes, Showtek and Kutski, features the luikes of Anne Savage, Organ Donors and Joy Kitikonti.
• The Victorian English Gentlemen’s Club release a new album on September 7.
The album, Love On An Oil Rig, features the fothcoming single Wathcing The Burglars.
• Brighton band Stick In A Pot, who mix po, punk and folk, release a new EP, When The Monsters Arrive, on August 3.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 9 July 2009

VV Brown travelling into the charts

• SPEEDING towards the charts with her new album Travelling Like The Light is hot tip VV Brown.
The singer combines Elvis style rock and roll with modern R&B and soul on the album, which was released this week.
• Star in the making Mr Hudson releases his new single Supernova on July 20.
The track, taken from the impending album Straight No Chaser, is a stunning collaboration with rapper Kanye West.
• Movers and shakers in the rock world The Rumble Strips have a new album in stores this week.
Welcome To The Walk Alone is the group’s second album, and features production work by Mark Ronson.
• Colourful artist Pink’s new single Funhouse is to be released on August 3.
The track is fourth song to be lifted from the album of the same name.
• Hotly tipped teen Daisy Dares You has put out a free track ahead of a full album release later this year.
To get a copy of the 15-year-old pop star’s track Daisy Dares You log on to
• DJ turned singer songwriter Fink releases a new single this week.
Sort Of Revolution, the title track from his brilliant new album, features a B-side remix by the Cinematic Orchestra.
• Lighten up! The new single from The Heavy is out.
You can pick up the sweet Sixteen, taken from the fortchoming album The House That Dirt Built, from this week.
• Britney Spears is back on the Radar - with a new single.
The track, from her album Circus, is out on July 27.
• Cool cats will already be waiting to pounce on the new album from Cougar, which is out on August 24.
The brilliant new band’s album, Patriot, sees them pushing the genres of metal and electronica to new heights.
• Spinnerette, the new band fronted by The Distillers’ Brody Dalle, has released a new album.
Stoner rock stomper Spinnerette, which features the track Ghetto Love, is out now.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Final editions

THE Loughborough Trader Xtra's last edition was printed this week.
Upbeat will continue to be carried until the last editions of the Burton Trader, Coalville Echo and Ashby Trader & Echo newspapers which are out the week beginning July 20.

Thursday, 2 July 2009

Florence And The Machine gunning for the charts

• BRIT award winner Florence And The Machine finally releases her anticipated debbut album this week.
Lungs contains the single Dog Days Are Over as well as an inspired cover of The Source’s You Got The Love.
• DJ Food fans can finally feast on new material from the reclusive DJ.
His first work in nearly a decade, his new EP One Man’s Weird Is Another Man’s World is out now, and is the first taster for next year’s album.
• Punk band Kong, who sound like a megalosaur tearing through Middlesbrough with predictably madcap results, release a new albyum Snake Magnet later this month.
You can download a free track from the album, Sport, by logging on to
• Swedish sensation Mando Diao, who sound like a cross between The Hives and The Libertines, have a EP out this week.
Mean Street is the first UK release from the group, who have a cult following across Northern Europe.
• Looking for a wheely good indie band? Try Bombay Bicycle Club.
The group released their debut album, I Had The Blues But I Shook Them Off, this Monday.
• Raw talent Dominique Young Unique, a 17-year-old female rapper from Florida, is set to release her debut EP Music Time this month.
You can download a free track from the release, which is being promoted by Yo Majesty!, by visiting
• Here’s one to get tongues wagging - The Gossip have a new album out.
Beth Ditto and co have put out a new LP called Music For Men.
• Metalcore legends Killswitch Engage have a new self-titled album out.
The album, the group’s second eponymous effort, sees the Massachusetts group making great strides towards the charts with their critically acclaimed metal sound.
• The latest dance trends to hit the dancefloors firmly in the Balearics have been captured on a new triple album.
Cream Ibiza, which features acts such as Deadmau5, Paul Van Dyk and The Killers, is out now.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Wednesday, 1 July 2009

Upbeat on a downer

IN AN announcement today, Trinity Mirror Midlands has revealed plans to restructure its business.
The plans take in the closure of a number of titles including the four which carry the Upbeat column.
It has not yet announced when the final editions of each will run.
Thanks to everyone who has read the column over the past year, you can still keep up to date with music news at

Thursday, 25 June 2009

Sparks set to light up charts

• ELECTRIFYING R&B star Jordin Sparks is gearing up with another attack on the charts.
Her new single, Battlefield, is out this week, with a new album of the same name scheduled for release later in the summer.
• The voice of UB40 Ali Campbell is hoping his new material will soar up the charts.
The new album, the typically reggae-based Flying High, was released this week.
• Australian pop sensation Lenka is showing off hertalents on her new LP.
The self-titled album by the singer, which contains the hit The Show, is out now.
• It’s T time! Jamie T, that is.
The British hip hop star releases his comeback mini album Sticks ‘N’ Stones this week.
• Lisa Hannigan, the singer who backed Damien Rice for his albums O and 9, has a new single out.
I Don’t Know, released on Monday, is taken from her album Sea Sew.
• Sorry to bother you, but I though you should know that rapper Roots Manuva has a new single out.
Do Nah Bodda Mi, taken from his superb album Slime And Reason, is in stores now.
• Just Jack is back.
The one-man act released a new single this week, Doctor Doctor, the second track to come from his current album All Night Cinema.
• Hoping to cut through the charts with his latest work is David Saw.
Singer songwriter Saw’s latest album, Broken Down Figure, was released this week.
• Folk artist William Fitzsimmon’s latest LP Goodnight is out now.
The album is an emotional exploration of the aftermath of his parents’ divorce which cost him his own marriage during the writing process.
• Some of the biggest stars of the 1970s have been collected on the new three CD Jackie collection.
The Summer Special, which features David Cassidy, The Beach Boys, David Bowie and Mud among many others, is out now.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 18 June 2009

Mars attracts

• THE latest album from Mars Volta is out of this world.
Octahedron, the experimental metal band’s fifth studio effort, is described as their “acoustic” album, and showcases the normally harder-edged group’s many sides.
• Dance duo Autokratz have released their long-awaited debut album, Animal.
The LP is a pumping collection of sturdy breakbeats tinged with a distinct Depeche Mode, Pet Shop Boys and Erasure influence.
• Avant garde rappers Anti-Pop Consortium have put out a new track free-of-charge.
You can grab a copy of Apparently, a taster for forthcoming album Flourescent Black, from
• Prog rock legends Dream Theater are back with their 10th studio album, Black Clouds And Silver Linings.
The album, which is in shops now, is a scintillating showcase of some of the best metal musicianship ever committed to record.
• Welsh supergroup Future Of The Left have released a new album, the punk masterpiece Travels With Myself And Another.
The blistering album, which is out now, deserves to be played as loud as your speakers will go.
• Party band Boy Crisis have a new song out this week.
The single Dressed To Digress, released on Monday, is a hedonistic slice of ‘80s-influenced electro disco.
• Singer singwriter Scott Matthews has put out a new song from his latest album Elsewhere.
You can grab a copy of the track, Into The Firing Line, from stores now.
• Irish rocker Marc Carroll releases a new single Always this week.
The track is the first cut from his forthcoming album The Dust Of Rumour.
• Here’s News For You - the sensational Seb single News For You is out now.
The London-based singer’s song marks his transition from record company odd job man to fully fledged artist.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 11 June 2009

Certifiably brilliant

• YOU’D be mad as a hatter not to pick up a copy of Kasabian’s new album, West Ryder Pauper Lunatic Asylum.
The newly-released LP, the Leicester-based band’s third album, contains their certifiably-brilliant current single Fire.
• Like a bat out of Hell, Meat Loaf is back!
The oversized rocker has remastered his 1984 collection of oversized rock songs Hits Out Of Hell, with two new additions, I Would Do Anything For Love (But I Won’t Do That) and I’d Lie For you (And That’s The Truth).
• Alternative metal masters Incubus have returned from a hiatus with two new tracks as part of a two-CD best of collection.
Monuments And Melodies, which covers the group’s hits from the Make Yourself album up until the present day, is out now.
• New Scottish indie rock band We Were Promised Jetpacks are looking to blast themselves into the charts.
Their stunning debut album, These Four Walls, was released this week.
• Irish pop sensations The Script continue their chart conquering antics with a fifth single, Before The Worst.
And given their previous successes, take it as read The Script will score another hit with the big-sounding track.
• Hidden gems from the musical past of African nation Benin have been unearthed for a new compilation album.
The Legends Of Benin album, part of the Analog Africa series, features some of the funkiest groups to come out of the country in the 1970s.
• Holy smoke! Brighton-based band Pope Joan are back.
The quirky funky math rockers have a double A-side single, Centurions/Volumes, out this month.
• Wonders of the musical world Dub Colossus have released a new EP this week.
Return To Addis is a companion CD to their critically acclaimed 2008 release A Town Called Addis.
• Fans of funky house should pick up a copy of Crazy Cousins’ latest LP, This Is Funky Volume One.
The compilation of established anthems and the latest floorfillers was released this Monday.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 4 June 2009

Little Boots a polished act

• KICKING off her campaign for superstardom this week is Little Boots.
The hotly-tipped electropop star, real name Victoria Hesketh, put out her shimmering debut album Hands, which features the single New In Town, this Monday.
• Pucker up - I Kissed A Girl star Katy Perry is back with a new single.
Waking Up In Vegas, the latest track to be taken from her album One Of The Boys, was released this week.
• Icelandic post-rockers Sigur Ros’s rare debut album Von was re-released this week.
The band’s album, orginally released in 1997 in Iceland, is now available to buy.
• VV Brown, an indie pop singer songwriter who has been tipped for the top, has released a new single.
Monday saw the release of VV’s third single, Shark In The Water, ahead of her album Travelling Like The Light.
• Singer Pixie Lott released her debut single Mama Do on June 8.
Pixie will also be appearing nationwide in support of The Saturdays, including gigs at De Montfort Hall in Leicester and Nottingham’s Concert Hall.
• Soul icon Chaka Khan has a new single out this week.
For the track Disrespectful, taken from her album Funk This, Chaka has teamed up with singer Mary J Blige.
• Orchestral pop outfit The Mummers’ new album is out now.
Tale To Tell is the first output by The Mummers, the guise of singer Raissa Khan-Panni.
• Spanish band Bastila have released a self-titled album.
Bastila was released in the UK on June 1.
• One sure to spread quickly is The Airborne Toxic Event’s new EP.
Happiness Is Overrated, the guitar group’s follow-up to their self-titled album, was released this week.
• Cool cats know that Cougar are a band to watch.
The group, who blur the lines between metal and electronica, release a double A-side of Rhinelander/Thundersnow this week.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 28 May 2009

Faith No More ain't no more any more

• FAITH No More? Not any more!
To coincide with the legendary metal group’s reformation for this year’s Download Festival in Castle Donington, the group have put out a best-of compilation.
The Very Best Definitive Ultimate Greatest Hits Collection is in stores now.
• Here’s one to get your claws into - Veckatimest by Grizzly Bear.
The group’s fourth album is a must-have collection of gloriously quirky indie pop.
• Scottish singer songwriter Paolo Nutini has released his second album.
Sunny Side Up, which contains the single Candy, is available to buy now.
• American idol Kelly Clarkson has put out a new single.
The track I Do Not Hook Up is the latest from her hit album All I Ever Wanted.
• Jolly good news - Hockey have released a new single this week.
One listen to the disco indie track Learn To Lose and it’s sure to stick with you.
• For what it’s worth, the new single from Placebo is out this week.
For What It’s Worth is the first taster of new album Battle For The Sun, which is out on Monday.
• Trance metal band come crashing back this week Enter Shikari with their single Juggernauts.
The track, out this week, even adds a rap section to the group’s already mashed up mix of dance music and metal.
• If you’re on the lookout for bittersweet pop rock, then maybe the new single from Carolina Liar is what you’re after.
The song, Show Me What I’m Looking For, released this week, is the first outing from forthcoming album Coming To Terms.
• The Revolution will not be televised - instead it will be released later this month on CD and mp3 download.
The Revolution presents Revolution, a collaboration between Cuban musicians such as Anónimo Consejo and Ariday Vega Martín and mainstream artists such as Norman Cook and Roisin Murphy, is out on June 29.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 21 May 2009

To the Maximo

• ONE to get fans of quality angular indie all a-flutter is Quicken The Heart, the third album from Maximo Park.
The album, which features the single The Kids Are Sick Again, is a perfect mixture of galvanising rock and roll, dreamy synths and pop hooks.
• Tongues are already wagging about the forthcoming single and album from Speech Debelle.
The female UK hip hop artist’s single Go Then, Bye hits shelves on May 25, with her album Speech Therapy out on June 1.
• Ultimate Pop Party landed on the charts with a bang this week.
The 21-track compilation album features massive hits from the likes of Lady Gaga, Girls Aloud, Mika, Jonas Brothers, Rihanna, Duffy and Bob The Builder, and is out now.
• Aiming at the charts with a new album are London’s Dub Pistols.
The album, Rum And Coke, showcases the groups cocktail of dub reggae, rap, ska and dance.
• Hard twang roots punks Crazy Arm release their debut album on Monday.
The group’s first LP Born To Ruin features the single Broken By The Wheel, which is out now.
• Latin pianist Alex Wilson and Bhangra percussionist Kuljit Bhamra have joined forces on a unique new album, Bhangra Latina, which is in stores now.
Kuljit said: “Bhangra Latina has the potential to attract audiences from many worlds.”
• Food for thought - Fink’s beautuiful new album is now out.
Sort Of Revolution is the latest album by the DJ-turned-singer songwriter, who has been compared to Jose Gonzalez and D’Angelo.
• Atari Teenage Riot founder Alec Empire released his latest EP this week.
Shivers is a hardcore slice of Nine Inch Nails-syle electro punk which is designed to whet appetites for a full-length album from the German later this year.
• You’ll be pleased to hear American DJ Yppah, whose name spells ‘happy’ backwards, has released a new album.
The psychedelic They Know What Ghost Know is in stores now.
• Wolverhampton singer songwriter Scott Matthews has put out a second album.
The rocker’s new album, Elsewhere, features a guest spot from fellow Midlander Robert Plant.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 14 May 2009

Sweet new single

• HERE’S one to get your teeth into - Candy, the new single from Scottish indie rocker Paolo Nutini is out this week.
The track is a taster for the 22-year-old gravel-voiced singer’s new album Sunny Side Up, which is set for a June 1 release.
• There are up to 23,000 seats at The O2 Arena - that’s a fact. And Katie Melua’s new live album recorded at the London venue sees her singing some of her best-known hits to a sell-out audience there.
The 19-track album, in stores this week, features If You Were A Sailboat, The Closest Thing To crazy and Nine Million Bicycles.
• Pianist Tori Amos releases her 10th studio album this week, the epic Abnormally Attracted To Sin.
The LP sees the singer songwriter again melding beautiful piano driven pop with dark electronica over a massive 18 tracks.
• Out now is Innerpartysystem’s new EP, the red hot Heart Of Fire.
The release, which combines a rock aesthetic with throbbing beats, has led the group to be compared to Depeche Mode, Nine Inch Nails and Pendulum.
• Kazak folk music may not trouble the charts often, but Chinese-born singer songwriter Mamer may change that.
His new album, Eagle, was released this week, mixing traditional Kazakstani music with alt-country in a style of his own dubbed Chinagrass.
• Vieux Farka Toure, the son of African blues legend Ali Farka Toure, has a new album out.
Fondo was released this Monday - and it clearly demonstrates that talent for crisp guitar work runs in the family.
• R&B star TI is out in the UK, ok?
The slick star’s new single, Whatever You Like, the latest track to come from the hit album Paper Trail, is out now.
• Mashing up ska and indie, London-based band Mouth Wash are a breath of fresh air.
The group’s album, True Stories, is available to buy, and the band are also touring, playing Birmingham’s Wagon And Horses on May 28 and Nottingham’s Maze on August 8.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 7 May 2009

Marmaduke Duke it out

• THE magnificent Marmaduke Duke released their royally riproaring second album this week.
The electronica album, Duke Pandamonium, the second from the duo of Biffy Clyro frontman Simon Neil and Sucioperro’s JP Reid, and contains the bouncy new single Rubber Lover.
• Looking for some time-tested laid back dance tracks to soundtrack your summer? Relax, Classic Chilled Ibiza, out on May 18, has it covered.
The three-CD compilation album contains tracks by Morcheeba, Bonobo, Leftfield, FC Kahuna, Coldcut, I Monster, William Orbit, Fatboy Slim, Moby, Underworld, Groove Armada and many more.
• Irish nu-soul sensation Laura Izibor has a new soul single out this week.
Don’t Stay is the second track from her forthcoming album Let the Truth Be Told, which is out on May 18.
• Guitarist Tom Brosseau has put out his third album, Posthumous Success - and it’s dead good.
The album sees the artist moving from his all-acoustic roots to a fuller sound.
• London-based pop duo Honey Ryder released their latest single on Monday.
Choices, a string-soaked radio-friendly pop rock track, is a taster for album Rising Up, which is out on May 25.
• Warwick, a folk group led by singer-songwriter Keith Warwick, have released an EP.
Based On Actual Events is a rich four-track collection sure to whet folk fan’s appetites for a full length release.
• The soundtrack to new film The Prodigals, which aims to raise awareness in youngsters about issues such as homelessness, sexual health and drugs, is out now.
The compilation features songs by Beverley Knight, Teezy, Ms Jaie and Typpah.
• West Midlanders Subkicks have released their debut album Threes, Fives And Sevens this week.
The funk-beat influenced indie band’s album contains the single Fatman.
• Sunshine-drenched summery soul singer Elviin has put out his first single.
The British singer’s single In Colour is the first taster for his debut album, currently being recorded in LA.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 30 April 2009

If You Seek Britney...

• OOPS she did it again - Britney has released yet another cheeky, catchy electropop single sure to ride high in the charts.
The new track, If You Seek Amy, is the third single to be taken from her latest album Circus.
• Dani Harmer, best known for her role as CBBC’s Tracey Beaker, has a debut single out this month.
Free, the theme tune to Dani’s House, her own sitcom, is an infectious catchy pop rock track.
• King Cannibal has teamed up with French rappers Face-A-Face for a brutal new single.
Virgo mixes King Cannibal’s fidgety dubstep and drum and bass with a vocal assault from the female vocalists.
• These are The Days, the next big pop rock band to attack the charts.
The Devon-based band have released a new single, Never Give Up, this week, ahead of their debut album’s release later this year.
• Freak folk band Our Brother The Native have released their new album.
Sacred Psalms is a dense collection of tracks which mixes experimental, orchestral, folk and post rock influences.
• The summery sound of Harrogate-born, Barbados-raised singer Livvi Franc is captured on new single Free.
The single, out on May 11, a mixture of pop, R&B, folk and the West Indian reggae with an underlying Soca beat.
• Minus IQ are hoping for a positive response to their debut album.
Home Cinema, which is out now, is an enthralling mix of rock, electro, dance and indie.
• Singer Lisa Hannigan, best known as the female vocalist on Damien Rice’s O and 9 albums, has released her debut solo album.
The ethereal Sea Sew is out this week in the UK, after going Platinum in her native Ireland.
• A little bird has told me that Sparrow And The Workshop are set to release their first material.
The three-piece release country-tinged alt folk single Devil Son/The Cold-Hearted Twist on May 11, before releasing a mini album, Sleight Of Hand, on May 25.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 23 April 2009

Take a Fantasy Ride with Ciara

• GOODIE! American hip hop singer Ciara is back, sexyback, with a saucy new single.
The raunchy Love Sex Magic, a duet with Justin Timberlake, is in stores, ahead of her new album, Fantasy Ride, which is out on May 4.
• Baka Beyond, a project which fuses Cameroonian pygmy songs with English folk instrumentation, releases Beyond The Forest on May 4.
The album is the result of recordings made in the Cameroon rainforest of tribeswomen’s singing, overdubbed with studio work by Martin Cradick.
• Flaming hot new girl band Fenix release their debut single on May 4.
The pumping Lady Baby is a remake of R&B classic My Boo by the group, who have recently supported N-Dubz on their nationwide tour.
• New wave electronica band Burn The Negative have released their new album.
The throbbing synthpop of In The Atmosphere, the Carlisle band’s debut offering which features the single Wonder Why, is in stores now.
• Bradford based band White Light Parade have put a new single out, the mile-a-minute Wake Up.
The track is also featured on the group’s new album, House Of Commons, which is out on May 4.
• Get your filthy mitts on a copy of Jo Webb And The Dirty Hands.
The power pop rockers’ new album, Acrobat, is out on April 27.
• If you haven’t bought a copy yet, you should be dashing out to pick up a copy of Summon The Heroes, the debut from The Rushing.
The sturdy metal album by the Reading rockers has been mixed by Mike Fraser, who has been at the helm for Biffy Clyro, Metallica, Led Zeppellin and AC/DC previously.
• One woman band Alessi’s Ark release a new single this week.
Over The Hill, the latest track by the 18-year-old Alessi, features on the forthcoming album Notes From The Treehouse.
Alessi is also playing at Birmingham’s Rainbow on May 7.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 16 April 2009

Forecast is good for Merriweather

• DANIEL Merriweather, famous for his work on Mark Ronson’s hit version of The Smiths’ Stop Me and Wiley’s Cash In My Pocket, releases his debut solo album next week.
The Australian R&B singer’s album, Love And War, is out on April 27, featuring the single Change.
• Dance sensation Kris Menace has released a three-CD debut album this week.
The excellent Idiosyncrasies features a double album of original house and techno, alongside a compilation of Kris Menace’s best remix work.
• Nutty popsters Noisettes release their debut album this week.
The indie rockers from London’s debut album, Wild Young Hearts, features the massive smash Don’t Upset The Rhythm.
• Manchester band Sonic Boom Six are not a band to be pigeonholed.
Their rip-roaring new album, City Of Thieves, steals from metal, rap, jungle, ska, punk and even glam rock.
The group will be touring in May, coming to Birmingham’ Asylum and Nottingham Maze.
• Hip hop experimentalist Prefuse 73 has released a new album
The sprawling Everything She Touched Turned Ampexian is an imaginative mixture of old school hip hop and futuristic ambient dance.
• Northern Irish singe Eoghan Colgan has released his first single.
Dream Satellite is the first taste of hotly-tipped Eoghan, who rose to fame winning the O2 Undiscovered 2007 competition.
• Rude boy pop group Kid British released their street smart new single Sunny Days this week.
The debut album from the group will be released in June.
• Blick Bassy, a soul singer hailing from Cameroon, has released a new album in the UK.
The singer, guitarist and percussionist’s LP, Leman, is a chirpy mixture of African music and uptembo bossa nova and jazz.
• Production duo Garry Hughes and Andrew T Mackay, AKA Bombay Dub Orchestra, have released their cosmopolitan new album.
3 Cities sees the duo mixing traditional Indian instrumentation with Western chillout beats.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 9 April 2009

The Virgins pop their album cherry

• FRESH new talent The Virgins pop their album cherry with a self-titled release on April 20.
The album by the New York rockers, tipped for success by both NME and MTV, features their current single, Rich Girls, which hit stores this week.
• Wymeswold indie band The Wave Pictures have released their second album in as many years.
The follow-up to last year’s Instant Coffee baby is the Leicestershire band’s most polished and pleasing work to date.
• Inspiration Information, out this week, is a collaboration between African bandleader Mulatu Astatke and London-based jazz dance collective The Heliocentrics.
The experimental album was described by Astatke as “a nice experiment”.
• One to grab a copy of is Hijak Oscar’s excellent new LP, BlackSheepMoneyBox.
The blues band, which features Ashby-de-la-Zouch’s Carl Hetherington on keys, rose to fame on Channel 4’s Mobile Act Unsigned TV talent show.
• The stunning Royal Family-Divorce is the new album from 11-piece Icelandic post rock band Storsveit Nix Noltes.
The album sees the group, who include msuicians from Mum and Sigur Ros, take on a handful of traditional Bulgarian and Balkan folk tunes in a raucous fashion.
• Hipsters, flipsters, and fingerpopping daddies, we give you Run Devils And Demons, the best of world music and dance fusers Transglobal Underground.
The two-CD compilation is an excellent retrospective of two decades of the ethno-techno group’s groundbreaking work.
• Up-and-coming US pop soul diva Jessica Clemmons releases her debut album, Permanent, on May 4.
The title track from the album is also set to be released as a single on April 20.
• A cracking collaboration between hip hop producer Mr Scruff and top British rapper Roots Manuva has been released.
The download-only Nice Up The Function is now available online.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 2 April 2009

Pink gives new single the green light

• COLOURFUL popstar Pink is set to release the latest single from her latest album, Funhouse.
Please Don’t Leave Me, the follow-up to chart-botherers Sober and So What, hits stores on April 27.
• The fourth album from alternative rockers Hundred Reasons has been released this week - for the second time!
The supurb album, Quick The Word Sharp The Action, was available for just 10 days last year before their record label was bought out and the album was taken off the shelves.
• Dance pioneer Tim Exile, best known for his work in drum and bass and IDM circles, has released a new album.
Listening Tree is sure to root Exile’s reputation as one of the most accomplished experimental dance producers around.
• Also tickling ravers’ fancies this week is Moondance, a massive three-CD compilation of classic dance tracks.
The set features early-90s classics such as Nomad’s I Wanna Give You Devotion, Rebel MC’s Tribal Bass and SL2’s On A Ragga Tip.
• post rock band Spokes have released a taster EP while they work on a full-length debut album.
The Manchester band’s effort, People Like People Like You, has seen the group likened to Mogwai and Sigur Ros.
• Glaswegian duo Big Ned release their self-titled Americana album this month.
The group have described their influences as David Lynch, Chris Isaaks and Satan.
• For all fans of UK hip hop, I’ve got Two Fingers for you.
The group, whose eponymous album is out this week, is a collaboration between renowned producers Amon Tobin, Joe “Doubleclick” Chapman and rappers including Sway.
• Expecting to make shockwaves on the music scene are electro newcomers Thunderheist.
Their single Jerk It is out this week, ahead of their self-titled debut album’s release on Monday, April 13.
• Take another look at Scottish rockers The View next week, when they release a new single.
Temptation Dice is the latest cut to be taken from their sophomore album Which Bitch?.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 26 March 2009

Metro Station on track

• NEXT stop, the top of the charts! Metro Station’s self-titled debut album is now in stores.
The pumping electronic emo album features hit single Shake It! and and forthcoming release Seventeen Forever.
• Monstrous metal band Mastodon have released a new album, Crack The Skye.
The thunderous progressive metal LP is the group’s most ambitious and rewarding effort yet.
• Scottish rockers Frightened Rabbit show a different side on their latest album, Liver! Lung! FR!
The album is an acoustic rendition of their breakthrough album The Midnight Album Fight, recorded live at The Captain’s Rest in Glasgow.
• Only the finest hip hop and R&B cuts make it into Pure Urban Essentials Spring 2009.
The two disc album, out now, features Madcon, Flo Rida, Jordin Sparks, Estelle and Gym Class Heroes.
• Operahouse have released a brilliant new single, Genius Child, ahead of their new album’s release.
The group, who have been compared to Muse and Radiohead, release Escape From the Sun on April 6.
• In The Cold Wind We Smile, the debut album from rock trio The Xcerts, is out now.
Featuring their anthemic single Crisis In The Slow Lane, the album is sure to blow you away.
• Schizotronic dance producer Kid 606, who aims to combine as many different genres of dance into each track, has two new releases out this month.
The disturbing Mr Wobble’s Nightmare EP is followed by a full album, Shout At The Donor, in late April.
• Northern Irish singer songwriter Ricky Warwick has been charged with helping his national team to World Cup qualification.
The boisterous The Arms Of Belfast Town, out now, has been chosen as the official campaign song by the country’s FA.
• American Idol David Cook has released his eponymous LP in the UK.
A rocky collection of stirring tracks, it’s clear to see why David Cook was voted winner of the show’s seventh series across the pond.
• Rockers Rank Deluxe have released their ska-inflected debut album, You Decide.
You decide.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 19 March 2009

Not just any old Tom, Dick or Harry

• THE latest act from Sweden, the land of pop, to plunder and pillage our charts are back.
Peter, Bjorn And John, the act behind the whistling success of Young Folks, release their latest album Living Thing on Monday, March 30.
• Northern Irish rockers Therapy?, the group behind ‘90s hit Screamager, have a new album out.
The blistering Crooked Timber, is out now - and you’d be mad to miss out.
• Pop rapper Just Jack again turns up the heat with his new single, Embers.
The track, out on March 29, is the first taster of the forthcoming album All Night Cinema, which is out in April.
• The complicated pop of Leeds’ Grammatics is where it’s at - full stop.
The group’s sensational self-titled debut is in stores now.
• Not for the faint hearted - gothic punk rocker Wednesday 13 has released his latest EP.
Bloodwork is a six-track horrorshow featuring a cover of Tom Petty And The Heartbreaker’s Running Down A Dream, as well as an ode to his favourite word that can’t be printed in a family newspaper.
• Springing forth with a brilliant new album are American band The Decemberists.
The band’s fifth studio LP, The Hazards Of Love, is out now, and sure to capture the hearts of discerning music lovers.
• Nutty band Noisettes have released a new single, Don’t Upset The Rhythm, this week.
The catchy track is sure to ring a bell - after being used to front the current Mazda ad campaign.
• Hell Yeah Recordings have launched a new remix series title Confuzed 90s.
The first release sees Sicilian duo Blatta And Inesha reworking tracks by 1990s techno group Ramirez.
• American glam band The Chelsea Smiles have released their new eponymous album in the UK.
• David Cook, winner of American Idol series seven, has his debut album out soon.
The self-titled LP is available to buy from March 30.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 12 March 2009

Go with the Flo

• FOLLOWERS of hip hop are sure be left in a right state when rapper Flo Rida finally releases his new track on March 23.
The track, featuring Ke$ha, is a take on Dead Or Alive’s 1984 hit You Spin Me Round (Like A Record).
• Hello? Is it Lionel Ritchie’s new single you’re looking for?
Then look no further - Just Go, the title track from the legend’s latest LP, is sure to have fans dancing on the ceiling.
• Academy Award-winning actress-cum-soul singing sensation Jennifer Hudson releases a new single soon.
Romantic RnB track If This Isn’t Love, taken from her eponymous album, is out on March 23.
• Dubstep DJ Shuttle’s career has blasted off with a new EP.
The Tunnel, his first release with top label Ninja Tune, is a brooding, bass-heavy slice of beat-driven brilliance.
• Singer Marianne Faithfull has welcomed some of her Faithfull companions to help out on her latest covers LP.
The double album Easy Come Easy Go features Nick Cave, Jarvis Cocker, Keith Richards, Rufus Wainwright, Sean Lennon and many more.
• One sure to get tongues wagging very soon is Speech Debelle.
The singer’s new single, The Key, which is out now, showcases a swaggering jazzy hip hop vocalist that’s definitely one to watch.
• Trance pioneers Cosmic Gate are set to release an out-of-this-world new album.
Mixing influences from other genres ranging from soul to rock with the group’s typical progressive trance, Sign Of The Times is released on March 23.
• Rising pop star Emma Deigman releases a new single on March 23.
The brassy Joss Stone-esque It Was You is a taster of the forthcoming debut album from Emma, who can already boast Take That’s Gary Barlow and rocker Rod Stewart among her growing legion of fans.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 5 March 2009

Ooh, new U2

• IRISH superstars U2 have released their new album, No Line On The Horizon.
The LP contains the hit single, Get On Your Boots.
• American Idol Kelly Clarkson has released her latest album, and it’s All I Ever Wanted.
The new release contains her latest single, My Life Would Suck Without You.
• Starsailor, the band behind the hit Good Souls, are back after a four year absence from the charts.
Their latest long-player, All The Plans, is out now.
• Former Zombies frontman Colin Blunstone has released a new LP.
Some 13 years in the making, The Ghost Of You And Me is finally available to buy.
• Irish singer Mary Coughlan has put out a new album, The House Of Ill Repute.
The album is her first studio effort since 2002’s Red Blues.
• Paris-based West African Daby Toure and London-based American Skip “Little Axe” McDonald have collaborated on a new EP.
Call My Name is a mixture of African influences, rock, blues, funk and reggae.
• The mouth-watering Hot Melts have cooked up new single.
The frenzied Edith was released on March 9.
• The trousersnake Juston Timberlake has lent his support to rapper T.I.
The pair’s single Dead And Gone, which features on T.I’s album Paper Trail, is out now.
• Teen Taylor Swift, who was the biggest-selling US artist of 2008, has released her new album in the UK.
The pop-meets-country collection Fearless contains her current single, Love Story.
• Result! The Score have released their debut single and album.
The British rappers’s first single We Got You is in stores now, ahead of the album Opus’s release on March 16.
• Pop royalty have gathered for Pop Princesses 2009.
The album, which is in stores now, features songs from Lady Gaga, Girls Aloud, Pink, Sugababes, Duffy, Christina Aguilera, Britney Spears, Gabriella Cilmi, Alesha Dixon and many more.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 26 February 2009

Prodigy release new album

• ELECTRO geniuses The Prodigy are set to take over the charts with their new album.
Invaders Must Die, in stores now, sees the group returning to their rave roots in spectacular whistle-blowing, shape-throwing fashion.
• Also on a dance tip, remixers Beyond The Wizard’s Sleeve have breathed new life into some of the best singles of recent months.
For Re-Animations Volume One, the duo of Erol Alkan and Richard Norris have reworked tracks by groups ranging from the Chemical Brothers to Peter, Bjorn And John to Franz Ferdinand to Late Of The Pier.
• One to ponder - the sparkling Katy Perry has released a new single, Thinking Of You.
The track, the third single from hit album One Of The Boys, is the first ballad to be released by the singer.
• Ready to give the charts some stick are Hockey, who released their debut single on March 2.
The band, from Portland, Oregon, make a sound similar to LCD Soundsystem playing Strokes numbers on single Too Fake.
• Brighton-based band The Brakes have released new single Hey Hey.
The track is the latest to be taken from forthcoming album Touchdown, out on April 20.
• Singer Nikka Costa, the daughter of Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jnr producer Don Costa, has released her new album.
LP Pebble To Pearl showcases Nikka’s mixture of soul, blues, funk and pop.
• Skint And Demoralised have released a new single, This Song Is Definitely Not About You.
The harmonic indie jangler is a precurser to the full album, Love And Catastrophes, which is out in May.
• To celebrate a successful 2008, Scouting For Boys release a free four-track EP from their website on March 9.
Vocalist Roy Stride said: “This is all down to our fans, so we want to thank them.”
• Oddball hip hop collaboration XRabit and DMG$ introduce themselves with their latest LP, Hello World.
The album is available to buy from March 9.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 19 February 2009

A few more I love yous for Annie Lennox

• DIVA Annie Lennox is set to release her first ever solo retrospective, The Annie Lennox Collection.
The former Eurythmics singer’s compilation, out on March 9, features tracks from her four solo albums including Little Bird, No More I Love Yous and Walking On Broken Glass.
The album also includes a new track, Shining Light, which is out as a single on March 2.
• Nudge, nudge - Josh Wink, the dance DJ behind the smash hit Higher State Of Consciousness, has released a new album.
The fruity uptempo dance album, When A Banana Was Just A Banana, is in stores now.
• If you like your R&B singles big, then look no further than new compilation Massive R&B Spring Collection 2009.
The two-disc compilation, released this week, includes hits from artists including Ne-Yo, Solange, N-Dubz, The Game, Rihanna and Akon.
• Proving that Africa Got Soul are South Africans Abavuki, whose album is out on March 2.
The project, the first by the group of young musicians from the country’s deprived townships, sees unique covers of soul classics such as Papa Was A Rolling Stone, Say A Little Prayer and I Heard It Through The Grapevine.
• Spirited release Roomful Of Ghosts, the latest album by American Samm Bennett, is now out.
The CD, available to by online from website CD Baby, sees Americana mashed with world music influences and experimental sounds to stunning effect.
• Soulful new songstress Laura Izibor is no bore on her new single Shine, which is out this week.
The track showcases the Dubliner’s classic R&B style which has been compared to Roberta Flack and Aretha Franklin
• Northern Irish alternative rockers Fighting With Wire release a sweet new single on March 2.
Sugar is the third track to be taken from their debut album, the fantastic Man Vs Monster.
• The Long Lost, husband-&-wife Alfred “Daedelus” Darlington and Laura Darlington, will soon be found on shelves.
The group release their oddball electronica-meets-acoustic self-titled album on March 2.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 12 February 2009

Spaceman blasts off

• LAS Vegas band The Killers are hoping to rock it with their new single, Spaceman.
The track, in stores now, is the latest cut from their impressive third album Day And Age.
You can also catch the group live this month at Birmingham’s LG Arean, or at the Nottingham Arena in March.
• Classical composer Hauschka, real name Volker Bertelmann, releases an EP of his work with a modified piano this month.
The Snowflakes And Car Wrecks collection of outtakes from last year’s Ferndorf album is available from February 16.
• You probably know them by their trail of critically acclaimed albums - the imaginatively-titled ...And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead have a new LP out on February 23.
The release, titled The Century Of Self, is the band’s sixth studio effort.
• Upstarts Kid British have released plans for a summertime release of their debut album.
The time of year should bode well for the group, who mix ska inflections, classic pop and hip hop elements into their good time indie rock romps.
• Metal group Shinedown release brutal new single The Sound Of Madness on February 23 and brutal new album The Sound Of Madness on March 2.
• Swedish folk sibling duo First Aid Kit’s Drunken Trees EP is sure to be plastered over the airwaves.
The calming collection of seven tracks is released on February 23.
• LA punk band The Bronx release a new single next month.
The raucous Young Bloods, taken from their latest LP The Bronx III, hits stores on March 2.
• Soul sensation Lemar has a new single, Weight Of The World, out on March 2.
The track, taken from his fourth album The Reason, is out ahead of a tour taking in dates at Birmingham NIA and Nottingham Royal Centre during March and April.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Friday, 6 February 2009

Erasure rewind

YOU can’t have enough of a good thing - so Erasure are releasing a new expanded version of their classic compilation album Pop!
Total Pop!, a supurb two-CD set of their first 40 hits, hits the shops on February 23, just weeks after the release of Pop! Remixed, which saw classic hits such as Always and A Little Respect reworked by artists including Jeremy Wheatley and Komputer.
• Up-and-coming trio Sky Larkin released their debut album The Golden Spike on February 9.
The group’s album, which features the single Beeline, sounds like Bjork fronting a punk band, and has seen the group compared to The Yeah Yeah Yeahs and The Violent Femmes.
• Power pop band The Days, who are just finishing their first headline UK tour, release their debut single any day now.
The track, No Ties, hits stores on February 16.
• Inexperienced New Yorker The Virgins are hoping the public will embrace their latest single Teen Lovers.
The track, out on February 16, is the second to be taken from their forthcoming album The Virgins, which is scheduled for an April release.
• Two new New Rhodes releases are pencilled in for February.
On February 16 the group release new single The Joys Of Finding And Losing That Girl, and then on February 23 the new album Everybody Loves A Scene is out.
• FatCat Record’s 130701 imprint, which features atists such as Max Richter and Hauschka, releases a chronological compilation of its first releases on February 23.
The 11-track voyage through the label’s experimentations in classical music, titled Floored Memory... Fading Location, features a number of previously unreleased tracks.
• Here’s one to get your hands on - UK garage trio DMT release their single Touch You on February 23.
The track samples the number one Rui Da Silva trance track Touch Me.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 29 January 2009

Who? U2, that's who.

• PUT your shoes on, brave the wintry weather and head down to the shops to pick up a copy of U2’s new single Get On Your Boots.
The throbbing single, out on February 16, is the first track to be taken from forthcoming album No Line On The Horizon.
• Composer Nathan Riki Thomson’s new album, the laid-back Under Ubi’s Tree, is released on February 9.
The debut album sees the multi-instrumentalist create a unique melting pot of influences from around the world on a variety traditional instruments.
• Yorkshire ska punk band Random Hand release their latest album on February 9.
The album, Inhale/Exhale, is a blistering collection of tracks that will feature during their forthcoming live gigs at Birmingham Carling Academy and Nottingham Rock City.
• The dreamy sounds of Anglo-Japanese group Asobi Seksu, whose name translates as “casual sex”, hits the shelves on February 16 in form of new album Hush.
The group’s third studio LP, Hush is a shoegazey collection of lush pop.
• Australian electro-glam duo Empire Of The Sun release their anticipated album Walking on A Dream on February 16.
The psychedlic pop group, formed by Luke Steele of The Sleepy Jackson and Nick Little more of Pnau, are tipped for the top, and were named in the BBC’s Sound of 2009 poll.
• Get on the bandwagon of Jump Ship, a Bristol-based band whose debut album was released last year.
Whatisthisandwhy, produced by former Massive Attack and PJ Harvey collaborator Head, melds electronic influences with traditional instruments to stunning effect.
• Glaswegians Attic Lights release their versino of Minder theme I Could Be So Good For You on February 16.
The track comes ahead of the remake of the classic TV show on Channel Five this month, starring Shane Ritchie.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 22 January 2009

Check out The View

• A SIGHT for sore eyes this week is the return of Scot rockers The View, who have their sights set on the charts with their second album out this Monday.
Which Bitch?, the follow-up to their hugely successful debut Hats Off To The Buskers, features their latest single Shock Horror.
• Legendary songwriter Burt Bacharach’s Magic Moments are released as a three-CD, 75-track comiplation on Monday.
The Definitive Burt Bacharach Collection contains hits from the pop pianist including What The World Needs now Is Love, Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head and I Just Don’t Know What To Do With Myself.
• All-girl folk group Tiny Tin Lady have an LP, Ridiculous Bohemia, available.
The album from the Merseyside band is a blend of fresh-sounding folk, solid rock bass and close harmony singing.
• Swedish singstress Nina Persson, former frontwoman for The Cardigans, has joined up with Atomic Swing’s Niclas Frisk and her husband Nathan Larson to create A Camp, whose latest album is out on monday.
The album, Colonia, is an atmospheric, epic, eclectic collection of leftfield indie pop.
• Californian singer and songwriter Ben Kweller releases his latest LP Changing Horses on Monday.
The former Radish frontman’s fourth solo LP is a slice of alt-country featuring the single Sawdust Man.
• Swedish post-rock band Jeniferever’s latest LP Nangijala has been released on CD.
The sophorific set of three songs, which was only previously available on vinyl, has been brought to CD by Naim Recordings.
• Great news - folk singer Emmy The Great’s gorgeous new album First Love is out on Monday, February 2.
The beguiling album is accompanied by a tour of the UK, which includes gigs at nottingham Bodega and Birmingham’s Glee Club.
• Who? The Whys And Wherefores.
What? Their debut album, Alright.
When? Now.
Where? All good record stores.
Why? Because the world needs a swinging five-piece band covering everything from roots to rockabilly.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 15 January 2009


• ARCHDUKES of art rock Franz Ferdinand have continued their saga with a new single, Ulysses.
The track, a funky slice of alternative rock, is the first glimpse of the group’s forthcoming album Tonight: Franz Ferdinand, which is out on January 26.
• Rock experimentalists Bloc Party release new single One Month Off on January 26.
The track, taken from their latest LP Initimacy, is a typically furious flurry of guitars and electronica from the London-based band.
• Saxophonist and composer Tim Garland has teamed up with his group The Lighthouse Trio and The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.
Double album Libra, which fuses the worlds of jazz and classical, is available from January 26.
• Musician, mystic and apprentice prophet Rainbow George has released a new single, forboding folk track Scoring Goals.
The track shares it’s name with Rainbow George’s ongoing film project, which was filmed on August 8, 2008, about a utopian vision for December 12, 2012, which is set to premiere on October 10, 2010.
• Are you ready for Are You Ready For Love?, the very best of The Detroit Spinners, which is out on January 26?
The LP features hits such as the title track, Working My Way Back to You and Then Came You as well as other Motown classics.
• Go nuts for Wild Young Hearts, the new single from indie rockers Noisettes.
Released earlier this month, the track is upbeat piece of pop rock in the vein of Ting Tings and Blondie.
• Children’s TV superstars Freefonix - made up of lead singer BB, zen guitarist Freezebone and beat junkie Mostart - release an album on January 26.
The CBBC band’s eponymous LP is packed with the kind of feisty pop that has made the show a hit with young music fans.
• Belfast band Kyron And the Strangels have released a new single, Hanging On The Ground, this month.
The song is an epic piece of string-soaked piano-driven pop that sounds like Royworld fronted by Leonard Cohen.
• Let the sounds of Makin’ Whoopee be the soundtrack to your Valentine’s Day this year.
The double CD is out on January 26, and features tracks such as Sam & Dave’s Hold On I’m Coming, Can’t Take My Eyes Off You by Frankie Valli and Knock On Wood by Eddie Floyd.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 8 January 2009

Britney puts on a show

• ROLL up! Roll up! The ringmaster of pop Britney Spears is again coming to town, in the form of her new single, Circus.
Circus, the latest single to be taken from her sixth studio album Circus, will be out on February 16.
• Dance producer Diplo’s career has had more high peaks than most, so to celebrate this fact he is releasing his first compilation album.
Decent Work For Decent Pay, which hits stores on January 26, includes remixes of tracks by Peter, Bjorn And John, Daft Punk, M.I.A and Hot Chip among other top collaborations.
• Hoping to shoot up the charts with their latest LP are The Rifles.
The London-based rock band release their latest album, Great Escape, on January 26, following up their debut offering No Love Lost.
• Daedelus, also known as Alfred Darlington, and his wife Laura continue their acoustic project The Long Lost with second single, Amiss.
The track, a gentle fusion of Brazilian and Californian influences, is available from February 9.
• Disco punk upstarts Thunderheist release a new single, Sweet 16, on February 16.
The track, a throbbing electro rap sizzler, is the precursor to their hotly-anticipated debut album Thunderheist.
• Biffy Clyro and Sucioperro side project Marmaduke Duke release a new single, Kid Gloves, on February 9, the first from their second album, Duke Pandemonium.
• If music made up of drum and bass beats, rock riffing and hip hop rapping is the right formula for you, then join the queue to buy The Qemists’s debut, Join The Q.
The group’s full-throttle debut album is released on February 2, and features contributions from Wiley, Mike Patton and beatboxer Beardyman.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 1 January 2009

Cop a load of The Bronx

• LA punk band The Bronx are set to knock your block off when they headline the infamous Shred Yr Face tour in 2009.
Following the release of their blistering album The Bronx III, out in the UK on January 26, the group will be playing dates alongside Rolo Tomassi and one other band, whose name cannot be printed in family newspapers, in Nottingham and Birmingham this Spring
The group will also be releasing a single, Young Bloods, on January 19.
• Power pop upstarts The Days, who rose to fame covering pop hits such as Katy Perry’s I Kissed A Girl on website You Tube, release their debut single on January 26.
No Ties, a good-time piano-driven rollicker, will no doubt feature when the group come to Nottingham and Birmingham as part of a headline tour in February.
• The website behind this column has announced the winner of its Album Of The Year 2008 poll.
Work-shy Bristol-based band Portishead’s trip hop masterpiece Third scooped the award, run on, with around 40 per cent of the votes.
Thanks to everyone who logged on and registered their vote.
• Rising stars The Saturdays will be playing in Loughborough this Spring.
The girl band, who have had two top 10 UK singles, will perform at the student-only end of term ball at Loughborough University.
• Blind Malian couple Amadou & Mariam’s sophomore LP Welcome To Mali has been named the best of 2008 by music review aggregator
The website, which gives releases an average score out of 100 based on reviews taken from sources around the world, rated the releasea 92 out of 100.
Second was The Bug’s London Zoo with an average of 90, and third was Fed by rocker Plush, which scored 89.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 25 December 2008

Mexicans wave hello

• MEXICAN acoustic duo Rodrigo Y Gabriela are due to follow up their cult classic debut album in 2009.
The pair have left their adopted home of Ireland to fly to Ixtapa in Mexico to record their second studio album, due to be released in Summer 2009.
• The new album from Colin Blunstone, formerly of The Zombies, is also in the pipeline - however its release has been delayed due to an exploding mixing desk.
Fans waiting for the release of The Ghost Of You And Me are now likely to have to wait until March for the album, which has been a Guns N’ Roses-esque 13 years in the making.
• 2008 surprise package Frightened Rabbit are to release a live album titled Quietly Now! in the New Year.
The acclaimed Scottish indie rockers will follow up their album The Midnight Organ Fight with the recording made at the Captain’s Rest in Glasgow.
The band will also play fates at The Musician, Leicester, and Glee Club, Birmingham, in March next year.
• West Yorkshire band Random Hand will release an new album, Inhale/Exhale, next February.
The up-and-coming ska-meets-metal band are also playing in Nottingham and Birmingham in the New Year in support of Reel Big Fish.
• Folk’s brightest young star, Benjamin Taylor, releases his new album The Legend Of Kung Folk Part One (The Killing Bite) next April.
The artist, the son of stars James Taylor and Carly Simon, is being tipped for big things with the release.
• Teitur, the most promising musician to come from the Faroe Islands probably ever, is to make his UK debut next year.
The artists will release his debut album The Singer and single Catherine The Waitress early in 2009.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 18 December 2008

Fall Out Boy out

• FALL Out Boy’s fourth album, Folie A Deux, marks a maturing of the group’s immensely popular sound.
Taking their distinctive pop punk rock to new levels of symphony and harmony, the polished LP features the hit singles I Don’t Care and America’s Suitehearts as well as their cover of Michael Jackson’s Beat It.
Speaking about the release, frontman Pete Wentz said: “Honestly, we have never been a critically acclaimed band or ‘cool’ band, but we have always moved the needle because of our fans and we don’t want that to change.”
• Urban brand TwiceasNice have compiled their three-CD Urban Club Album Of The Year.
The storming compilation, mixed by Shortee Blitz, Scottie B and DJ Ironik, features hits from Rihanna, Sway, Estelle, Britney Spears, Wiley, Dizzee Rascal, Sean Paul, Usher, Flo Rida, Dr Dre, Brandy and many more.
• Refreshing singer songwriter Jason Mraz’s new album, We Sing, We Dance, We Steal Things hits stores on December 29.
The patter of acoustic artist Mraz, that has spawned hits such as I’m Yours and Make It Mine, is also teamed up with Colbie Caillat and James Morrison on the LP.
• The hottest ever cuts from the garage scene have been put together for the bumper The Very Best Of Pure Garage.
Spread over four CDs mixed by Matt “Jam” Lamont the collection of old skool, bass, vocal and nu garage features tracks by artists including Craig David, Dreem Teem, MJ Cole, Shanks And Bigfoot, Azzido Da Bass, CJ Bolland, DJ Zinc, Mr Oizo, and DJ Luck And MC Neat.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at - and there’s still time to log on and vote for your favourite Album Of The Year for 2008.

Albums Of The Year 2008

JUST to say that the Upbeat-endorsed Albums Of The Year 2008 vote is now up and running here.
Please click across and vote for your favourite.

Thursday, 11 December 2008

Get your Kixx

• POP pickers can thank this column for an early Christmas present this week - as we introduce next year’s big thing, The Kixx.
A four-piece pop rock band already tipped to top the success of McFly and The Jonas Brothers, the Reading-based band have released their debut single this week.
Apology, an infectious pop rock track, is in stores now.
• Experimental classical composer Hauschka has announced a new LP is set to be released.
The Snowflakes And Car Wrecks album, out in February 2009, is a collection of material recorded during the sessions which produced his critically acclaimed Ferndorf album earlier this year.
• Top hip hop label Ninja Tune has announced a series of albums to be released in the coming months.
The label will put out new material from artists including The Qemists, Diplo, the Long Lost and Sway and Amon Tobin’s collaboration Two Fingers in early 2009.
• Swedish pop group Peter, Bjorn And John have announced that their fifth album will be released in 2009.
The as-yet-unnamed release will be preceded by a new track, Lay It Down.
• Out of this world musical project N.A.S.A. will hit stores in February next year.
The hip-hop album will feature input from artists as diverse as Santogold, Kanye West, Kool Keith, Tom Waits, George Clinton, KRS One, David Byrne, Karen O and even ODB.
• Leading lights of British hip hop Dan le Sac and Scroobious Pip have teamed up with American rapper Pos Plug Won of De La Soul for a new single.
The group, who are currently on a tour of British libraries, will release Thou Shalt Always Kill on January 19.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at - and this week the website behind this column unveils it’s top 10 Albums of the Year 2008.
Please log on to from December 17 to see the list, and to vote for your favourite one.

Thursday, 4 December 2008

Metallica in dream land

• THE dream return to the charts Metallica had with their number one album Death Magnetic is set to contuinue with the release of their new single All Nightmare Long.
The breakneck track is released on December 15 is eight full minutes of brutal riffs and unforgiving beats typical of the rock gods’ latest material.
The b-sides to the single are two classic Metallica tracks, Wherever I May Roam and Master Of Puppets, recorded live.
• Kanye West’s latest single, Love Lockdown, is in stores now.
The track, taken from his new album 808s And heartbreak, is a storming slice of tribal synth-based hip hop sure to fill any dancefloor.
• Britney Spears has announced that her next single from her latest album, Circus, will be the title track, Circus.
The follow-up to current barnstormer Womanizer is alread flirting with the charts, ahead of its release, on digital downloads from the album tracklisting alone.
• Underrated songwriter Paul Carrack is to release a new single, I Don’t Want Your Love (I Need Your Love), on January 5.
The song is the third to be taken from the prolific colloborator’s latest album, I Know That Name.
• Disgraced comedian Johnathan Ross’s backing band, Four Poofs And Piano, are heading out on tour early next year.
The comedy group, who rose to fame on Ross’s Friday Night programme, will be playing at Loughborough Town Hall on February 28.
• To celebrate moving to a new record label Brighton supergroup the Brakes have released a new track.
Crystal Tunings, which will feature on their 2009 album Touchdown, can be downloaded from
• The Big O, better known as Roy orbison, is releasing a new Best Of box set.
The release will feature all of the guitarists hits, such as Oh Pretty Woman, Only The Lonely, Drove All Night and Runnin’ Scared.
• And if all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 27 November 2008

Set to make a killing

• STADIUM fillers The Killers have released their eagerly-awaited third album Day & Age.
The Las Vegas band’s LP, the follow-up to 2006’s Sam’s Town, features the hit single Human.
You can also catch the band live in the UK next year at dates in Birmingham and Nottingham in February and March.
• Hip hop royalty Kanye West has released his fourth album, the ground-breaking 808s & Heartbreak.
The album, which features the single Love Lockdown, is a change of direction for the rapper, who uses a combination of synth and vocoder on the LP to stunning effect.
• Wish it could be Christmas every day? Then pick up your copy of Christmas Jukebox!
The three-CD compilation features three themes to make every Christmas party go with a bang – a festive section, a rock selection and a further 20 tracks of pop.
• Hot new band Burningpilot are driving into the charts with their debut album.
The new LP, Cold Caller, is an arty slice of post-punk greatness akin to Franz Ferdinand.
• Eighteen-year-old solo star Alessi’s Ark releases her debut EP, The Horse, on December 8.
The release, a sophisticated, crafted preview of an up-and-coming talent, was produced by the team behind Bright Eyes.
• British-born country pop singer Chilli Gold releases her debut album in January.
Waterfalls, which features here current single Out Of My Mind, is available from January 12.
• Described as "the folk-pop Ting Tings", Oh, Atoms are set to release their debut album You Can’t See The Stars From Here next year.
The whimsical indie-folk album, which features the single Sugar Mouse, is due for release on February 2.
• If all this is music to your ears, why not log on to for more news, reviews and musings from the music world.

Thursday, 20 November 2008

Rather Be in the charts

• RESURGENT Britpoppers The Verve have released a new single, the self-produced Rather Be.
The track, taken from the group’s number one album Forth, is an epic slice of the group’s trademark guitar work.
• In-demand DJ Deadmau5, real name Joel Zimmerman, is set to release a hand-picked selection of unreleased tracks from his first record label.
The ten-track compilation of Canadian label Play Records artists’ old school electro tracks and club classics is titled Deadmau5 At Play, and is released on December 15.
• Talented new UK singer songwriter Andy J Gallagher has released his debut single Something Else.
Available on the Crocodiles And Prostitutes EP, the track is a teaser for his debut album Helicopter Dolphine Submarine which is out next year.
• Hard rockers Shinedown release their debut single, the riproaring Devour, on December 8.
The group, who have risen to prominance supporting Disturbed, plan to attack the charts with their first LP The Sound Of Madness, early next year.
• The Irrepressibles, an invention of singer songwriter Jamie McDermott, release a CD and DVD package of their eclectic sonic art on December 8.
Mixing influences from jazz to samba to baroque, the experimental sound of From The Circus To The Sea is described as "like nothing heard before".
• Hot new artist Chilli Gold is hoping to pepper the charts with her new single, Out Of My Mind.
The track, a piano--driven epic, hits stores on December 8.
• Malian legend Issa Bagayogo releases his latest album, Mali Koura, on December 8.
A fusion of western African and European cultures, the album is one of the most unlikely dancefloor successes of the year.
• Croydon upstarts The Tunics release a new single, the raucous Cost Of Living, on December 8.
The energetic indie rock track, the group’s debut release, is sure to appeal to fans of Arctic Monkeys and The Wombats.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 13 November 2008

Third birthday celebrations for Frank Turner

• HARDCORE hero turned contemporary folk singer Frank Turner is set to release a new album, The First Three Years, spanning his solo career to date.
Starting with his tentative first release The Real Damage and finishing with a cover of ABBA’s Dancing Queen, the former Million Dead frontman’s new work is a must have for fans.
• Atlantan rapper T.I. releases a new album, Paper Trail, on November 24.
The album, which has already hit the number one spot in the US, is followed by a new single, the Rihanna collaboration Live Your Life, on December 8.
• Fans of the band can get a little more Paramore on December 8, when the pop punk rock band release standalone single Decode.
The track is the lead single from the forthcoming soundtrack to the movie Twilight.
• Former Fame Academy contestant Lemar releases a new album, The Reason, on November 24.
The singer’s fourth studio release is a collection of 10 soulful songs from the British R&B singer.
• Singer Estelle has teamed up with dancehall rapper Sean Paul for her new single, Come Over.
Released on November 24, the track is a raggae infused cut from her Mercury Prize nominated album Shine.
• Upwardly mobile Brighton-based band Gloria Cycles release a new single, No Zeros, on December 1.
You can also catch the group live in support of the raucous Cage The Elephant at Rock City in Nottingham on November 17, solo at Eddie’s Rock Club in Birmingham on December 4, and supporting The Rascals at Kasbah in Coventry on December 20.
• Mike Skinner, better known as The Streets, releases a new single from his fourth album Everything Is Borrowed on December 1.
The track, Heaven For The Weather, is an upbeat tongue-in-cheek take on life after death.
• Soul jazz and pop singer Natasha Panas relases her album Yellow Flowers on December 1.
The blooming sumptuous debut LP features her current single Kennington.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 6 November 2008

Soul songs' Seal of approval

• SINGER songwriter Seal’s sensational new album Soul has hit stores.
Soul, an album of covers of classic tracks by the distinctive Seal, features reworkings of tracks such as Ann Peebles’s I Can’t Stand The Rain, Otis Redding’s Knock On Wood and Ben E King’s Stand By Me.
Seal said: "Someone once said ‘the album will sound like the time you had making it’.
"Never before has it been as true as the process of recording this record."
• Enya’s new single, Trains And Winter Rains, is now available to buy.
The track is the first single to be taken from Enya’s seventh studio album, the forthcoming And Winter Came.
• Aiming to prove he’s not just all talk, Sir Michael Parkinson has released a new compilation album, titled My Life in Music.
The two-disc release features artists that have influenced the chat-show king, including Frank Sinatra, Sting and Michael Buble.
• Bluesman Seasick Steve has strut into the charts with a new single.
Walkin’ Man is a bluesy, laid-back track taken from his latest album, I Started Out With Nothing And I Still Got Most Of It Left.
• Superclub Ministry Of Sound releases a second Anthems compilation on November 17.
The latest compilation covers 1991 to the present day over three CDs, and features tracks by Orbital, Snap!, Faithless, Robert Miles, Modjo, Sash!, Underworld, Arand Van Helden, Prodigy, Daft Punk and many more.
• Mixing influences from klezmer to reggae to pop, Esser’s new single Satisfied, stands alone.
The retro-sounding single from the up-and-coming star is available from November 17.
• MOBO nominee Asa releases a new single, No One Knows, on November 24.
The soulful single is a slice of the singer’s world-meets-soul style, captured on her self-titled debut album.
• Kid Rock is set to storm the charts again, following from his number one hit All Summer Long.
The rocker’s next track from the album Rock And Roll Jesus is Roll On, a tender ballad.
• Legendary singer songwriter Neil Young’s seminal 1968 live set at Canturbury House is to be released.
The archive Sugar Mountain Live performance, one of his first as a budding solo star, hits shelves on November 24.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 30 October 2008

Get it, Now!

• HAPPY birthday to you, happy birthday to you, happy birthay dear Now! series, happy birthday to you!
To mark their quarter-century as the most iconic pop compilers on the market, Now That’s What I Call Music! 25 Years has been released.
The release is a three CD compilation of eighties, nineties and noughties music including artists ranging from Amy Winehouse to Phil Collins to Micheal Jackson.
• Houston, we have an album – Belfast rock ‘n’ roller Brian Houston is back with a new long-player, Three Feet From Gold.
Featuring his latest single, Oranges, the album mixes vintage rock and pop influences with classic songwriting.
• Superclub Ministry Of Sound releases it annual collection of dancefloor fillers, appropriately titled The Annual 2009, next week.
The album is a comprehensive round-up of the year’s biggest dance tracks from the likes of Basshunter, Calvin Harris and Mint Royale.
• Paul Carrack, who has worked with artists such as The Eagles, Ace, Squeeze, Mike And The Mechanics, Roger Waters, Elton John and many more, has releases a new solo album.
I Know That Name features his current single I Don’t Want To Hear Any more, which features Don Henly and Timothy B Schmidt of The Eagles.
• Add a little flava to you festive season with the new Massive R&B Winter Collection 2008 compilation.
The two-disc collection features tracks by artists including The Pussycat Dolls, Timbaland, The Game, Rihanna, Neyo, Snoop Doggy Dogg, LL Cool J and many more.
• Heart-throb James Blunt returns with a new single, Love, Love, Love, on November 17.
The stand-alone single is the first new material from James since his best-selling All The Lost Souls album.
• As well as visiting Nottingham’s Rock City on November 15, Death Cab For Cutie release a new single on November 17.
No Sunlight is the latest stunning track to be lifted from their brilliant album Narrow Stairs.
• Glittering star Santogold releases another pop nugget on November 24.
The stomping single, Say Aha, is taken from the eclectic singer’s eponymous LP.
Santogold will also be supporting Kanye West when he comes to Europe this month – including a gig at Birmingham NEC on November 15.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at

Thursday, 23 October 2008

Camp rock

• DOING their best with a new single out on November 3 are pop rockers Scouting For Girls.
The new track, I Wish I Was James Bond, is the latest to be lifted from the licensed-to-thrill number one album Scouting For Girls.
A spokesman for the group said: "Whilst Britain undergoes an extensive period of uncertainty both politically and economically, it is the music of Scouting For Girls that can lift the nation’s spirits with their hugely upbeat sunshine pop."
You can see the band on tour throughout November and December including dates at Nottingham Arena and Birmingham’s Carling Academy.
• Rockabilly revivalist Imelda May is hoping to make a lasting impression on the record-buying public with debut album Love Tattoo.
The Irish singer’s debut LP, out now, is a rip-roaring collection of ‘50s-inspired tracks.
• Soulful singing sensation Lemar returns on November 10 with a new single, If She Knew.
The track, the lead single from the Fame Academy graduate’s forthcoming fourth album The Reason, combines Lemar’s heartfelt vocals with layers of acoustic guitar-driven RnB.
• The unique sound of Threatmantics hits the charts on November 3 when their debut offering Upbeat Love lands on shelves.
The Welsh rock and roll trio, who visit Birmingham’s Factory Club on November 20, make their music on viola, guitar, drums and keyboards – with Huw Davies playing both drums and keyboards simultaneously.
A spokesman said: "This is a short, sharp album packed to the brim with skuzzy, mind-blowing rock and roll."
• Operahouse are set to release the dynamic Change In Nature EP on November 10.
The release is a taster for their debut album, recorded under the guidance of Embrace’s Richard McNamara, which is due early next year.
• Jack of all trades John Barrowman is releasing a new single on November 17.
The catchy new single, What About Us, is written by Take That star Gary Barlow and is the first taster of new album Music Music Music.
• Former X-Factor entrant Maria Lawson releases a new single, These Walls, on December 1.
Taken from the singer’s second album, Emotional Rollercoaster, due out in January 2009, the track fuses soul, pop and rock sensibilities.
• Looking for an early Christmas present?
Pop Party 6, a compilation packed with hits from the likes of the Sugababes, Ting Tings, Jonas Brothers, Rihanna, McFly and more is out from November 3.
• If all of this is music to your ears, you can read more from the pop world online at