There are quite a few returning faces this week, but that’s because they keep coming out with amazing stuff and I find it too hard to leave them out. There’s also music from some new people whose back-catalogues I’m keen to explore. Enjoy.


1. ‘NO. 28’ – Methyl Ethel


I’ve been in love with these guys for a while now and I made noises that could be considered unmanly when I saw they’d released a new track. ‘No. 28’ holds the same dream-pop, jangly beauty that first gripped my attention with the group, but is more upbeat and staggered than a lot of their previous output. I hate the fact it’s only the one new song, but I love it because it’s fantastic.

2. ‘SOMETHING IN THE WAY’ – Jorja Smith


Jorja Smith is going to have an amazing career. Her output has been consistently great, and her latest EP Project 11 shows her versatile talent and range of influences. Opening track ‘Something in the Way’ is soulful, powerful, and gives Smith a chance to show off a voice that sends chills down my spine.

3. ‘LILIPUTT’ – Beth Jeans Houghton & The Hooves of Destiny


Beth Jeans Houghton is somebody I hadn’t come across until last week, but she’s been plugging away in the industry for a while now, and I’m looking forward to drowning in her past releases. Born in Newcastle, Houghton’s music holds psychedelic, folk and pop elements, which are masterfully blended with one another into something incredible. Houghton’s voice is perhaps the dominating feature of her music though; it penetrates the wall of sound created by the other instruments and sticks in your mind long after you’ve heard it.

4. ‘LA FEMME RESSORT’ – La Femme


There are so many influences on show with French group La Femme that it’s hard to put them down as any one thing. Having said that, is it necessary to even try to do that? ‘La Femme Ressort’ comes from the band’s 2013 album Psycho Tropical Berlin, and is an experimental, psychedelic soundscape that’s easy to get lost in. I’m looking forward to hearing the rest of the group’s material.

5. ‘CORRINE’ – Black Honey


This Brighton four-piece generated a lot of buzz last year, but I apparently missed all that. Whoops. ‘Corrine’ is a fantastic indie single; jangly, catchy and perfect for shoegazing Brighton-types, it’s one that’s been on repeat ever since I first heard it. The group have released a few more tracks since this one, but none have become as stuck in my head as much as this has.

6. ‘SWIM AGAINST THE TIDE’ – The Japanese House


Ethereal, gorgeously produced and brooding with beauty, ‘Swim Against the Tide’ is the title track from The Japanese House’s (AKA Amber Bain’s) third EP. The EP itself is just as great as the first track, and proves that Bain has an exciting career ahead of her.

7. ‘SPOILER’ – Baloji


Belgian hip-hop artist Baloji has been creating music since the late 90’s, but only started his solo career in 2006. ‘Spoiler’ is the opening track from his latest offering, an EP titled 64 Bits & Malachite. Whilst it’s something that would have fit in with the UK club scene back in 2010, it’s a solid track that’s infectious and contains influences from Baloji’s Congolese heritage. Great stuff.

8. ‘C-H-E-M-I-C-A-L’ – The Chemical Brothers


Songs containing the name of the performing artist are normally found in the realm of hip-hop, but The Chemical Brothers decided to buck that trend with their latest track. It’s another great offering from the duo, but unfortunately isn’t part of an upcoming new LP. Instead, the pair announced that they’ll be releasing reissues of most of their back catalogue, just in time for Christmas. Funny that.

9. ‘SUN CITY CREEPS’ – Woods


I came across this track, and the band Woods, for the first time last week and I’ve been trying to listen to as much of them as I possibly can. ‘Sun City Creeps’ comes from their 9th LP though, so it should be no surprise that I’ve not quite got through everything yet. This track, and indeed the album it’s taken from, is different to a lot of their older output in that it explores jazz and reggae elements; older albums tended to focus primarily on psychedelic-folk that presumably became quite stale. ‘Sun City Creeps’ is a great jumping off point to explore the rest of the group’s music, and makes me wish it was still Summer.

10. ‘SIDE TO SIDE’ – The Beat feat. Ranking Roger


Carrying on the reggae sounds and closing out this week are Birmingham-based group The Beat, featuring original lead vocalist Ranking Roger. The group have apparently re-formed, so I’m not entirely sure why Roger’s credited as a featuring artist, but that’s not really a massive concern. The group released a new album, Bounce, back in September, and ‘Side to Side’ is taken from that LP. It’s an upbeat, classically ska track, and made me give the rest of the album a listen which was most definitely worth it. Go check it out.

Ryan Ottley-Booth




13 is meant to be an unlucky number, but I don’t really buy into all of  that superstition. Not much anyway. One thing’s for certain though; it’s lucky you’ve got these songs in your life, because they’re great. (See what I did there? The old bait and switch? God I’m good.) Enjoy.


1. ‘FILL IN THE BLANK’ – Car Seat Headrest

car seat

The release of Car Seat Headrest’s second major label album Teens of Denial was not quite as smooth as the band, or indeed their label Matador would have wanted; a previously approved sample for one of the tracks was pulled at the last minute, resulting in a recall of all the physical albums. Although the album was released on-time digitally, it was likely frustrating for the Virginia group. That aside, the album is a masterful creation, offering hard-edged indie rock and brutally honest lyrics. ‘Fill in the Blank’ is a great opener to a brilliant album.

2. ‘HOT ONE’ – Savoy Motel

savoy motel

You know when you find yourself making weird faces whilst trying to comprehend what you’re listening to? That’s what happened when I first heard ‘Hot One,’ the debut single by Nashville group Savoy Motel released back in January. A brilliantly eccentric mixture of 70’s pop and indie rock, the band race through this track with abandon, creating something strangely beautiful. The band are quite mysterious in their marketing methods, but I hope to learn more about them soon.

3. ‘FRANKIE SINATRA’ – The Avalanches


I hadn’t heard of The Avalanches until ‘Frankie Sinatra’ dropped last week, but it’s been 16 years since they released any music at all. Having listened to their first and only full-length album, Since I Left You, they are now a firm favourite of mine. According to my sources, (what-apedia? What’s that?) The Avalanches create “plunderphonic” music, essentially utilising recordings of other tracks and creating a collage of those sounds. It’s a method that births mind-bending music that’s just fantastic.

4. ‘COME CLEAN – E NEW Y RADIO’ – Jeru the Damaja


Another artist I only came across last week, this time thanks to Romesh Ranganathan’s ‘Hip Hop Saved My Life Podcast.’ A track that is classic 90’s hip hop, featuring a dirty drum beat and a great flow from the New York-born rapper Jeru. The album it comes from, The Sun Rises in the East, has been listed as one of the greatest 100 hip hop albums of all time, and is definitely worth a listen.

5. ‘OLD SKOOL’ – Metronomy


An unashamedly funky, upbeat record that certainly lives up to its name, ‘Old Skool’ is loads of fun. It also promises good things for Metronomy’s fifth album, Summer 08, set for release at the beginning of July. I remember getting a free copy of Love Letters a couple of years ago, but for the life of me I can’t remember what it came with. I do remember loving it though, and I’m very excited for Summer 08.

6. ‘GOLDEN DAYS’ – Whitney


Whitney are a wonderful example of how combining the old and the new can work wonders. Their debut album, Light Upon the Lake, released last Friday, is a ride through vintage Americana tinged with modern indie influences. Julien Ehrlich’s voice is magical, and I don’t think I’ve ever wanted to kiss a man more after hearing his vocals on ‘Golden Days.’

7. ‘DOING IT TO DEATH’ – The Kills

the kills

‘Doing it to Death’ has been on the radio nearly non-stop since its release in early March, but it hasn’t been done to death itself yet, (God I’m on fire today). The opening track to their latest album Ash & Ice, released last Friday, the track features a crunchy riff from Jamie Hince, and amazing vocals as ever from Alison Mosshart. No doubt this one will get stuck in your head, apologies for that.

8. ‘GROOVIN’ HIGH’ – Dizzy Gillespie


An absolute master of his art, Dizzy Gillespie was a virtuoso who created some of the best jazz music known today. Breaking the boundaries on harmony and style, Gillespie is also known for popularising bebop, and for destroying the muscles in his cheeks from incredibly long jam sessions. That’s a kind of devotion I envy.

9. ‘MONKEY SEE MONKEY DO’ – Allan Kingdom


Kingdom released his mixtape Northern Lights back in January, but I only came across him last week. He featured on Kanye West’s track ‘All Day’ released in 2015, and it’s clear that West is a big influence on the Canadian rapper. Kingdom is still only 22, and has a lot of potential; I’m excited to see where he goes next.

10. ‘WHERE DID I GO?’ – Jorja Smith

jorja smith

After featuring ‘A Prince’ on a previous playlist, I promised I was going to keep an eye on the R&B songstress. I let ‘Where Did I Go?’ slip under my radar a couple of weeks ago though, but I’m so glad I’ve heard it now. Another excellent release from Smith, with clever songwriting and a voice that’s magical. Can’t wait to hear even more.

Ryan Ottley-Booth