Tuesday 28 December 2021

Introducing Gabriels

Trust me #30

Song of the year - Love and Hate in a Different Time by Gabriels

Earlier on in 2021 Paul Weller curated a mix CD titled Into Tomorrow for Mojo magazine. One of the songs was Love and Hate in a Different Time by an artist called Gabriels. It stood out a mile and I played it a lot in the car.

But ... I never checked up on the artist. I just assumed that it was an old soul cut from the late 60's or early 70's, an era that Weller is passionate and knowledgeable about. 

In late September sunshine I was driving my Mum and sister to North Berwick and I had the CD on. My sisters ears pricked up as Gabriels played. 


Oh it's a song on a Paul Weller compilation, brilliant isn't it?


Emmmm can't remember, the CD cover is in our kitchen!

On the way back we played the song again and Carla sent me a message to remind me to check the song and artist when I got into our kitchen. I did and Carla checked up on Gabriels.


Carla tends to send messages in block capitals when excited!

And then a couple of months later.


I could and I did. By this point Love and Hate in a Different Time was our song of the year. The gig is SOLD OUT. Check this dreamy live performance.

Check Gabriels stunning performance for Later to see and hear why and read on for a full introduction to the band. You can also check this short film

Gabriels is singer Jacob Lusk with producers Ryan Hope and Ari Balouzian. The trio release Loyalty (feat. Ashley Sade) as their debut single in 2018, a slow burning soulful confessional gem, beautifully structured and delivered.

There was a gap of two years to 2020's In Loving Memory, another ballad. Lusk's voice is stunning, whispering his story, the backing vocals are exquisite, the finger snaps really SNAP. The production is sublime.

Love and Hate in a Different Time was released in June this year as an EP, also including the songs Professional, In Loving Memory and their debut single Loyalty.

As mentioned, the title track simply blew me away; the lyrics, arrangement, playing, voice and production. The use of backing vocals, strings, handclaps, effects .... Love and Hate in a Different Time is ridiculously good. Classic, timeless, pure, beautiful, sublime ...

We lost it in the fire

Love and hate in a different time

We lost it in the fire

What I did to make you mine

Professional is gorgeously swoony and dreamy, Lusk's voice is simply heaven sent and again, the strings and arrangement are just incredible. So beautiful. Lusk is backed by fellow angels as the song takes a gentle but lovely twist.

You were supposed to protect me baby

You were supposed to love me

Bloodline, released on 3rd December, is the second EP of the year for Gabriels. The songs continue to display vast riches in terms of writing, performance, vocals, arrangements and production.

Innocence is moody, dark and atmospheric. Stark at times, beautiful strings offer glimmers of hope at others. Lusk sounds wounded, singing ain't love a hypocrite? when he sounds like he already knows the answer.

Lusk sounds more hopeful  Blame, but he also sings of being lost and asking who will catch him when he falls down.

Can't be a slave if I'm already free

Can't be a captive if it's where I wanna be

The highest compliment I can pay Gabriels is that they sound like nothing else going on (that I have heard) at present. It's just sublime

Stranger is quite outstanding. Again, just dripping with soul, aching with hurt, the instrumentation, the arrangements - utter genus. Just before 2-minutes the melody begins to flow...

I wish I would've told you

We had something I never had

I wish that I could hold you

I f**ked up and can't take it back

Lusk goes on to realise now we're just strangers, two distant strangers, you're just a stranger.

Dreamy strings usher in Bloodline, there is an old 50's jazz style feeling to the song - vocals and instrumentation. Lusk tells a story of his ancestors, his bloodline, getting poetic by urging people to speak bravely, speak truly, do it with all of your heart. Imploring keep rising, keep shining, 'til the ocean meets the stars, ending by saying don't let it destroy you

Links to all the songs I have previously featured in my Trust Me series are listed below.

And you can check them all via my Trust Me playlist on Spotify by CLICKING HERE or searching for Everything Flows Trust Me.

Previous Trust Me blogs

1. Something On Your Mind by Karen Dalton
1A. Crimson and Clover by Tommy James and the Shondells
2. I Am, I Said  by Neil Diamond
3. Where's The Playground Susie?   by Glen Campbell
4. If You Could Read My Mind by Gordon Lighfoot
5. Gimme Some Truth by John Lennon
6. Gone With The Wind Is My Love by Rita and the Tiaras
7. In The Year 2525 by Zager and Evans
8. The Music Box by Ruth Copeland
9. The Ship Song by Nick Cave
10. Sometimes by James
11. I Walk The Earth by King Biscuit Time
12. Didn't Know What I Was In For by Better Oblivion Community Centre
13. When My Boy Walks Down The Street by The Magnetic Fields
14. The Man Don't Give A F**k by Super Furry Animals
15. All Flowers In Time Bend Towards The Sun by Jeff Buckley and Liz Fraser
16. Are You Lookin' by The Tymes
17. A Real Hero by College & Electric Youth
18. Feelings Gone by Callum Easter
19. Sunday Morning by The Velvet Underground
20. Did I Say by Teenage Fanclub
21. Don't Look Back by Teenage Fanclub
23. Belfast by Orbital
24. Clouds by The Jayhawks
25. Dreaming Of You by The Coral
26. Everlasting Love by The Love Affair
27. As Long As I've Got You by The Charmels
28. Shaky Ground by Sneeze
29. Rill Rill by Sleigh Bells

Saturday 18 December 2021

Listen The Snow Is Falling

Cover version of the month #72

Galaxie 500 cover Yoko Ono & The Plastic Ono Band

Released as the b-side to John Lennon's Happy Xmas (War Is Over), Yoko Ono's Listen, The Snow Is Falling, a gentle lullaby, with Lennon's Plastic Ono Band backing. 

Beginning with Ono singing childlike, gently, almost like a lullaby, the song then develops with Yoko singing beautifully over music that wouldn't be out of place on The Beatles Abbey Road or Lennon's Imagine album.

Yoko allegendly criticised keyboard/organ player Nicky Hopkins by saying something classically Ono-esque - "Play as if the snow is melting from your fingertips, not that banging."

Ono has also said of the song - "The first pop song I ever wrote was Listen, the Snow Is Falling. I did that before John and I got together. Then, when we got together, I made it into a real pop song. When you hear the original, you couldn't pick out why it was a pop song."

Galazie 500, no strangers to my cover version of the month blog having previously featured with their stunning versions of New Order's Ceremony and George Harrison's Isn't It A Pity?, covered Ono on their 1990 album This Is Our Music with Naomi Yang on lead vocals.

Yang's vocals are very Ono-like, but at 2-minutes 40 seconds the song receives the unmistakable stamp of Galaxie 500. The guitars are raw and soulful, like a cross between Neil Young and Crazy Horse and The Velvet Underground. For a full glorious 5-minutes! Raw and soulful, I love the guitar sounds Galaxie 500 create. 

Things slow down to a couple of chords and Misunderstood style feedback going on, then things build and become beautifully crazy and hazy again, music to get lost in. A sublime choice of cover, Galaxie 500 have such great taste.

Yoko Ono - Listen The Snow Is Falling

Galaxie 500 - Listen The Snow Is Falling

I've added the song to my cover versions playlist or search for Everything Flows Cool Cover Versions on Spotify. 

You'll find a list of all previous songs to feature on the blog and links to them below the lyrics to Yoko's Listen, The Snow Is Falling.

Snow is falling everywhere

Snow is falling all the time

All the time

Listen, the snow is falling all the time

Listen, the snow is falling everywhere

Between Empire State Building

And between Trafalgur Square

Listen, the snow is falling all the time

Listen, the snow is falling all the time

Listen, the snow is falling everywhere

Between your bed and mine

Between your head an my mind

Listen, the snow is falling all the time

Between Tokyo and Paris

Between London and Dallas

Between your love and mine

Listen, the snow is falling everywhere

Snow drift, snow fall, snow fluff

Listen, listen, listen baby, listen

Previous covers of the month

13. Hurt

Thursday 16 December 2021

Rill Rill by Sleigh Bells

Trust me #29

Sleigh Bells are apparently an intense noise pop band.

I'd never have guessed after hearing their 2010 single Rill Rill on Lauren Laverne's brilliant 6Music show one morning last month. I must have played it 50 times over the next week or so.

Although after checking the album Treats that the song features on, I can see where the intense noise description comes from! 

Sleigh Bells are Alexis Kraus and Derek Miller, the latter of whom was in a metalcore band, while Kraus was in teen bands. The duo met in Brooklyn and quickly found they could work easily together.

But back to Rill Rill, which is easily the bands most popular song with over 38 million plays.

The groove is there from the very start. It's got a kind of Beta Band rawness and soul, there are bells, little vocal noises and then Alexis starts singing. The vocal melody just flows so naturally and beautifully.

Wonder what your boyfriend thinks about your braces

What about them? 

I'm all about them

Six such straight A's

Cut 'em in the bathroom

Rill Rill such a cool song and Apple picked up on it, using it in a 2013 iPhone advertisement.

The coolness stems from the Funkadelic song Can You Get To That from their classic 1971 album Maggot Brain. It's a sublime use of sampling, taking the little riff that comes and goes in the Funkadelic tune and using it as the basis for a whole song, inspiring a new flowing vocal melody - gorgeous.

You can listen to all the songs I've featured in my Trust Me series in a playlist by searching for Everything Flows Trust Me on Spotify or by CLICKING HERE

You can also read about the previous songs I've written about by clicking on the links below.

Previous Trust Me blogs

1. Something On Your Mind by Karen Dalton
1A. Crimson and Clover by Tommy James and the Shondells
2. I Am, I Said  by Neil Diamond
3. Where's The Playground Susie?   by Glen Campbell
4. If You Could Read My Mind by Gordon Lighfoot
5. Gimme Some Truth by John Lennon
6. Gone With The Wind Is My Love by Rita and the Tiaras
7. In The Year 2525 by Zager and Evans
8. The Music Box by Ruth Copeland
9. The Ship Song by Nick Cave
10. Sometimes by James
11. I Walk The Earth by King Biscuit Time
12. Didn't Know What I Was In For by Better Oblivion Community Centre
13. When My Boy Walks Down The Street by The Magnetic Fields
14. The Man Don't Give A F**k by Super Furry Animals
15. All Flowers In Time Bend Towards The Sun by Jeff Buckley and Liz Fraser
16. Are You Lookin' by The Tymes
17. A Real Hero by College & Electric Youth
18. Feelings Gone by Callum Easter
19. Sunday Morning by The Velvet Underground
20. Did I Say by Teenage Fanclub
21. Don't Look Back by Teenage Fanclub
23. Belfast by Orbital
24. Clouds by The Jayhawks
25. Dreaming Of You by The Coral
26. Everlasting Love by The Love Affair
27. As Long As I've Got You by The Charmels
28. Shaky Ground by The Lemonheads

Monday 13 December 2021

Teenage Symphonies To God

Back in the 1960's, an acid fried Brian Wilson described the songs he was writing for his Smile project as "teenage symphonies to God". Quite a description! I'm kind of amazed that it took until 1994 for a band to steal the phrase for an album title.

The band in question was Velvet Crush, from Providence, Rhode Island. Formed by Paul Chastain vocals/bass and  Rick Menck on vocals/drums, the two had played in bands through the 80's before forming Velvet Crush. On Teenage Symphonies To God they were joined by Jeffrey Borchardt on guitar. 

Velvet Crush signed to Creation Records in the UK, perhaps aided by a cover version of Teenage Fanclub's Everything Flows as an extra track on their 1991 CD single Ash & Earth

Chastain and Menck's Teenage Symphonies To God are not as complex as the arrangements Wilson was working on all these years ago. Their symphonies are like the ones thousands of American kids blasted out in garages and basements throughout the country - guitar(s), bass, drums - power pop. 

Lord knows what happened to my CD copy of it. I always loved the artwork - super cool. And it has been great to listen back to the songs - full of hooks, harmonies and warm guitars. If Teenage Fanclub were influenced by Big Star around this time, then Velvet Crush sound like Big Star.

Opening with Hold Me Up, you're immediately into the sun soaked world of Velvet Crush and it's a rather lovely place to be, particularly at time when it gets dark around 4pm and every time you turn on the news you don't know what will be coming next. 

Velvet Crush can rock out/jam on, beautifully demonstrated on their cover of Matthew Sweet's Something's Gotta Give, where they sounds like a dream band you could discover playing in your local bar.

They can bring it down too, #10 is absolutely beautiful. A different kind of Big Star. And then you have the likes of Weird Summer and Time Wraps Around You, both full of harmonies and chiming Byrds-esque guitar, sounding and feeling wonderful.

Speaking of The Byrds, Velvet Crush cover Why Not Your Baby by Gene Clark, their harmonies at their peak, a variety of guitar sounds colliding to sound glorious. 

Star Trip is possibly my favourite song on the album. Sun kissed and dreamy guitar sounds and melodies.

I'm on a dream cloud

Higher than the sun but I'm coming down

From my dream, my dream cloud

I shot for the stars but I hit the ground

I can't feel it, it feels alright

Keep On Lingerin' closes the album, Velvet Crush highlighting that The Flying Burrito Brothers also feature heavily in their record collection.  

Overall, Teenage Symphonies To God has a lovely waves of warm guitar sound and an infectious sense of energy. I've really enjoyed listening to the album again and I hope you do too. Or if you decide to check it out for the first time then let me know what you think.

Star Trip


Friday 10 December 2021

Never Ending Mixtape part 67


Welcome to the latest additions to my Never Ending Mixtape which now has 154 hours 32 minutes of music, approaching 2,500 songs.

Thanks so much if you are one of the 259 people that follow it. And thanks also if you check in now and again. I hope you rediscover an old favourite or discover something new and wonderful you haven't heard before.

I add songs regularly as I go, there is no particular method. Unlike the mixtapes when I was younger that were restricted to 60 or 90 minutes. Back then I would meticulously plan the running order. With no limit on this mixtape, I just add songs all the time. I do like playing the playlist on shuffle though.

Here is a list of the latest songs I have added. Check out Hey Boy by The Magic Kids that I first heard very recently while DJ-ing recently with my friend Barry in Mono. Barry also played Foggy Notion by The Velvet Underground which sounded absolutely incredible.

Search for Everything Flows Never Ending Mixtape on Spotify or CLICK HERE

Weirdo - The Charlatans

Taste - Ride

Today - Ride

Polar Bear - Ride

Bye Bye Pride - The Go-Betweens

Paint - The Lemonheads

Stephanie Says - The Velvet Underground

I'm Sticking With You - The Velvet Underground

Hospital - The Lemonheads

Half The Time - The Lemonheads

Nature #1 demo - The Charlatans

Hope Is The Last Thing To Die - David Holmes

Kitchen - Godstar

Sunshower -  Godstar

Every Step Is A Way Through - Marioni

Love Having You Around - First Choice

Together We Stand - Araiana Greenblatt

Chaise Longue - Wet Leg

Wet Dream - Wet Leg

What Kind Of Lady - Dee Dee Sharp

Oh Girl - The Ch-lites

Have You Seen Her - The Chi-lites

Ecstasy - New Order

Leave Me Alone - New Order

Laurie (live) - Tim Burgess

The Only One I Know - Tim Burgess

Trianon Masp - Monokini

Another Version Of The Truth - Tim Burgess

We All Need Love - Tim Burgess

Just One Kiss - Tim Burgess

Always Together With You - Spiritualized

I Think I'm In Love - Spiritualized

If The Kids Are United - Sham 69

The World Is Waiting - Gerry Love & Frank Popp Ensemble

Only For Tonight - Pearl Charles

What I Need - Pearl Charles

Kill All Hippies - Primal Scream

Light My Fire - The Doors

Jump Into The Fire - Harry Nilsson

Without You - Harry Nilsson

Early In The Morning - Harry Nilsson

Taste of Cindy - The Jesus and Mary Chain

Fake ID - Spyres

Free Today - Albertine Sarges

Oh My Love - Albertine Sarges

Before You Gotta Go - Courtney Barnett

Like A Ship - Pastor TL Barrett and the Youth for Christ Choir

Jolene - Dolly Parton

Can't Seem To Make You Mine - The Seeds

It's Getting Better Man - Oasis

On Melancholy Hill - Gorillaz

Kissaround - Sister Vanilla

Rill Rill - Sleigh Bells

Lonely Planet Boy - New York Dolls

Chameleon Queen - Cats Eyes

Don't Cry, No Tears - Teenage Fanclub

Days Of Heaven - The Dream Machine

Hey Boy - The Magic Kids

Foggy Notion - The Velvet Underground

Thursday 9 December 2021

Anything Goes & Everything Flows DJ mix 7


This months 1-hour DJ mix, inspired by the kind of tunes that would be played in McChuills or The Variety Bar back in the early 00's (where the motto was anything goes and everything flows) is another eclectic mix with a kind of early evening moving towards the bar getting busier with pre-clubbers kinda vibe

I used to love going into McChuills in particular at that time. Sitting at the bar with a beer, enjoying the tunes and a chat with the bar staff and friends. Then just getting more and more in the mood for a dance and a big night out as the evening wore on and the tunes changed.

So we start with The Cure, New Order and The The - cool indie tunes with playful melodies and grooves, moving to the simply sublime Sister Sledge with the gorgeous Thinking Of You. Moving into the soulful shuffle and crystal clear vocals of Sharon Jones, we then add a dash of funk with The Quantic Soul Orchestra, before The Spinners with It's A Shame, the kind of song you can sing the chorus after one listen - what a tune!

Getting busy in the bar, it's time to ramp things up a little with the stone cold gem of Bowie's Sound & Vision is dropped. Always likely to get those in the know smiling and nodding in appreciation - maybe even a little dance.

And if you want to make people feel good on a Friday/Saturday night then a little Prince with I Wanna Be Your Lover can go a long way! Greg Wilson's mix of Confidence Man starts a little slow for 20 seconds and then the bass and beats kick in - what a tune! The last 2-minutes are particularly euphoric!

If Queen of Japan's I Was Made For Loving You is good enough for Too Many DJ's then it is good enough for me - edgy sexual pop perfection. Felix Da Housecat works with the magical Nina Simone's Sinnerman and then we have Hot Chip to move further into the night.

Enjoy this mix. Search for Everything Flows DJ mix 7 on Spotify or CLICK HERE

Close To Me - The Cure (Oakenfold mix)

Age Of Consent - New Order

Uncertain Smile - The The

Thinking Of You - Sister Sledge

How Long Do I Have To Wait For You? - Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings

Pushin' On - The Quantic Soul Orchestra

It's A Shame - The Spinners

Sound and Vision - David Bowie

I Wanna Be Your Lover - Prince

Out The Window - Confidence Man (Greg Wilson mix)

I Was Made For Loving You - Queen of Japan

Sinnerman - Nina Simone (Felix da Housecat mix)

Boy From School - Hot Chip

Thursday 2 December 2021

2021 Albums of the Year

I don't tend to blog on albums that often, as when I do, they tend to be in depth pieces that take some time. Indeed, as of March 2021 I had only blogged on 79 albums across the history of my blog

But I always keep a running list of my favourite albums released through the year saved in a draft blog that I review at the start of December to narrow down to my absolute favourites.

2021 has been a good year for new music and also for re-issues; BMX Bandits My Chain album was released on vinyl for the first time, my sister Carla reissued her Homemade Lemonade album on its 5th anniversary under her own name (previously released as Ette), Trashcan Sinatras I've Seen Everything received loving care in terms of packaging and reviews, and then you had big hitters like The Beach Boys with their magnificent Feel Flows boxset and The Beatles with Get Back - book, boxset and documentary.

In terms of music released in 2021. While old favourites like Teenage Fanclub and Primal Scream feature in my top 10, I hope that this blog might point you in the direction of some albums you might have missed by new, emerging and developing artists and bands you might like.

Other end of year lists are likely to point me in the direction of albums I've missed through the year. I've also included a few other albums I've enjoyed through 2021 after my top 10 and a list of all my previous albums of the year.

My top 10 favourite albums of 2021 are;

Endless Arcade - Teenage Fanclub

PeMa / Merge

Setting the tone with 7-minute opener Home, Teenage Fanclub's first post Gerry Love album saw Norman pouring his heart out and Raymond offering friendship, support and advice.

Raymond's Come With Me melted my heart, it might be my favourite song that he has written. While Norman tugged on heartstrings with Back In The Day and the exquisite The Sun Won't Shine On Me

My first post pandemic shows were Teenage Fanclub in Edinburgh and Glasgow shows. It was so good to see them again and they were brilliant. Roll on SWG3 in April.

I'm More Inclined - video

Come With Me

Magic Mirror - Pearl Charles

Utterly gorgeous. Echoes of Carole King. Beautiful voice, compelling songwriting. I heard about Pearl Charles in that very 2021 way - through a #timstwitterlisteningparty

Opener Only For Tonight is joyfully upbeat with a chorus that you don't want to end. While Don't Feel Like Myself sounds like something you should have heard before - classic songwriting, beautifully performed. 10-songs, 37-minutes - perfect.

Only For Tonight - video

Plays Nice n Sleazys on 3rd February.

The Umbrellas - The Umbrellas

Independent guitar pop from San Francisco with a passing nod to Glasgow and The Pastels in particular. When I first heard them singing of Autumn leaves leading to the boy/girl vocals both singing the hook lets lay in the sunshine, just you and I my heart burst with joy. Great guitars, melodies and hooks - a sense of love and care pours out of this album.

I fell for this album on first listen, so did many others and the initial pressing sold out really quickly. The second vinyl pressing should be out in February/March.

Near You - video

Live at home - video

Uncommon Weather - The Reds, Pinks & Purples

Oh how I love the sound of someone pouring their heart out over fuzzy/chiming electric guitars. I only discovered this album in November while talking music in Monorail. Uncommon Weather was actually released back in April and had I discovered the album then, it may well have been my album of the year. 

I hope I never fall in love, all the things you do for love sings Glenn Donaldson, beautifully and soulfully. Also hailing from San Francisco, this is a truly beautiful album. I really hope Donaldson brings it to Scotland sometime. 

The Reds, Pinks & Purples Bandcamp

Don't Ever Pray In The Church On My Street - video

The World Within Our Bedrooms - Drug Store Romeos

Bedroom dreamy, shoegaze-y, psychedelia with pop melodies. I think I read about this album in The Sunday Times Culture magazine! A far cry from me discovering bands from the NME or Melody Maker!

Anyway, this is a really gorgeous album, the band sound like they are in their own little world and they're inviting us in for 50-minutes. There are lullabies like Cycle of Life and dream pop moments like Frame of Reference. Their melodies are sublime, like they have been dreamt.

Frame of Reference - video

Still Life - Massage

Formerly The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart, in the words of their Bandcamp page, these are 12 deft songs full of late-summer sunlight and deep shadows, pained grins and shared jokes, shy declarations of love and quietly nursed heartbreak.

The same page states - take a little There She Goes By The La's, some If You Need Someone by the Field Mice, the honey-drizzled guitars from The Cure's Friday I'm In Love, a Mary Chain backbeat and you're almost all the way there. Indie pop, jangle pop, power pop - whatever you want to call it.

How can you fail to fall for a description like that? And how pleasing to find it to be accurate!

Turn My Dial - M Squared Recordings and more, 1981-84 - Tangled Shoelaces

Raw, innocent, pure ... these recordings by a very young Tangled Shoelaces captured my heart. Aw man, Oceans Away is incredible, I love it so much, kind of like New Order by way of Melbourne. I blogged on the album HERE and interviewed Stephen from the band HERE. The best songs on this compilation are among the very best released in 2021. 

The Biggest Movie Ever Made - video

Demodelica & The Screamadelica 12-inch singles - Primal Scream

Sony / BMG

Primal Scream have been in a very reflective mood for a while. Something they would previously have poured scorn on, but looking back kind of suits them. They've earned it after blazing a trail with Screamadelica and XTRMNTR in particular. And also, they're kind of lucky to still be around to reflect after their hedonistic lifestyles. Primal Scream are an important band.

Of course, reflecting on Screamadelica 30-years down the line after the loss of Andy Weatherall must have been hard. His influence is undeniable. But Demodelica really highlights the songwriting going on and the experimentation with new equipment and sounds. While the 12-inch singles showcases that Primal Scream and all their friends created some incredible music that still sounds remarkably fresh, futuristic and vital all these years down the line. I'm including both in this list!

This Is How It Starts - TeenCanteen

What should have been their debut album. Recorded after a handful of rehearsals over 2 weekends. Under My Covers with Duglas T Stewart is sublime, You're So Analogue is warm, fuzzy and funny and the original version of Friends is equally heartmelting and spine tingling, while the original version of How We Met (Cherry Pie) is a slice of sugary sweet pop perfection.

Like rain that falls without a warning

On a sunny morning

This is how we met

How We Met (Cherry Pie) 


System - Callum Easter

Lost Map Records / Moshi Moshi Records

Only released in November, System builds on Easter's Here Or Nowhere debut album. I love the way everything sounds so urgent, it comes across as if it was recorded live, or as if each layer to the songs was recorded in 1st take. Opener What You Think? has Easter in full (almost continuous) flow with a choir backing at times, a thrashy/trashy beat, catchy keyboard riff and it sounds glorious.

Beautiful at times, Lose Sometime is a real favourite, barmy at others, always with energy and soul. There are pop hooks, brilliant use of backing vocals and a scuzzy soulful feel throughout. Can't wait to finally catch Easter live in 2022.

What You Think? - video

And I also enjoyed;

Ronin I - UNKLE, The Tide is at the Turning - Man of the Minch, Black Acid Soul - Lady Blackbird, Seeking New Gods - Gruff Rhys, 1:2 - Cindy, Sweep It Into Space - Dinosaur Jr, Fir Wave - Hannah Peel, Utopian Ashes - Bobby Gillespie & Jenny Beth. Hen Hoose 

Previous albums of the year

2010 - Shadows - Teenage Fanclub, This Is Happening - LCD Soundsystem, 

2011 - Love & Lemonade - Futuristic Retro Champions, Jonny - Jonny

2012 - One Day I'm Going To Soar - Dexys, Electric Cables - Lightships, 

2013 - Big Inner - Matthew E White, Reflektor - Arcade Fire

2014 - Morning Phase - Beck, Tied To A Star - J Mascis

2015 - Beyond The Silver Sea - Dr Cosmos Tape Lab, Modern Nature - The Charlatans

2016 - Pii - Stephen Solo, Say It All With A Kiss - TeenCanteen, Here - Teenage Fanclub

2017 - Adios Senor Pussycat - Michael Head and the Red Elastic Band, How The West Was Won - Peter Perrett

2018 - And Nothing Hurts - Spiritualized, Impossible Stuff - Carla J Easton

2019 - Kiwanuka - Michael Kiwanuka, Purple Mountains - Purple Mountains, Pii3 - Stephen Solo

2020 - Fugitive Light & Themes of Isolation - Andrew Wasylyk, Weirdo - Carla J Easton,