Best Albums of 2017 Dec18

Best Albums of 2017

Some favourite albums from 2017 – by no means a definitive list, but a selection of records that captured the attention during the last 12 months.

Mew – Visuals

Another slice of dreamy guitar rock from Danish trio Mew.

Best of April 2015: Monthly Playlist May06

Best of April 2015: Monthly Playlist...

 From the scorching punk of Canadian trio METZ to the forty minutes of ambient classical beauty that is William Basinski’s  ‘Cascade’, here are some of the best tracks of the past month....

Mew: + –

Some twenty one years after they formed in Copenhagen, indie Rock quartet Mew remain one of the music scene’s best kept secrets. Feted in their homeland, they continue to enjoy relatively modest success throughout the rest of Europe and the US despite releasing a string of consistently superb albums since their inception. They do have a fervently devoted cult following and it’s evident why once you get to see this band in the flesh – their live concert in the Academy in Dublin 2009 is still one of the best shows I have seen in the last decade, an ambitious mix of high tech visuals and epically bombastic guitar anthems. They are not a band that play the corporate Rock game, eschewing the easy path to success to follow their own strangely, beautiful star. They have all the tools to be a massive arena rock act, but they are too quirkily cryptic, a little too otherworldly to meet the expectations of the masses. That said, sixth album + – (another one of their eccentricities, the enigmatic album title) edges them a little closer to mass acceptance.  It’s an album that mixes Prog Rock arrangements with their ear for deceptively addictive hooks and melodies to deliver their most mainstream sounding album to date. This is the acceptable face of grandiose Rock; accented power chords, drum fills last heard on a seventies era Yes record and singer Jonas Bjerre’s ethereal falsetto combining to make a deeply unfashionable but wholly satisfying noise. ‘Satellites’ opens the album in panoramic fashion – widescreen synths give way to big hair guitar guitars and we are off and running. Bjerre manages to make the vaguely bitter lyrics sound impossibly sweet. ‘Witness’ keeps things on the up and up, indie guitar rock with that special Mew twist.  ‘The...