16/30 art pop singer-songwriter

bc camplight – the last rotation of earth

TLROE’s loudmouth irony dwarfs its heartfelt instrumentals to make both feel inane.

26/30 pop revisited review singer-songwriter

jens lekman – night falls over kortedala

A chic rom-com with the lyrical posture of Morrissey and the humour of Father John Misty.

29/30 folk revisited review singer-songwriter

dorival caymmi – canções praieiras (1959)

This is a pitch-perfect, diaphragm-clearing exhale of love.

25/30 album of the week folk singer-songwriter

kara jackson – why does the earth give us people to love?

Jackson’s deep presence through the unevenly built tracklist mirrors the process of living through love and loss.

23/30 classical folk singer-songwriter

ichiko aoba – ichiko aoba with 12 ensemble (live at milton court)

This latest project with a small orchestra underlines Aoba’s plunging emotions while slowing her fall into them.

26/30 album of the week pop singer-songwriter

weyes blood – and in the darkness, hearts aglow

Weyes Blood began life as a DIY, acoustic venture, where Natalie Mering’s voice fluttered above a sound collage of tape recorders, saws, bells, and whistles. This is Natalie’s fifth album performing under the moniker. The opener could be on a spacier version of Bowie’s Station to Station: it’s not just that well-produced, it’s that sweeping. […]

30/30 folk revisited review singer-songwriter

elliott smith – either/or (1997)

Elliott Smith packed more melody into a double-tracked whisper than would be expected in a Glee cover of Mariah Carey. He can also say ‘fuck’ with more power than any outlandish, testosterone-steaming ‘rockstar’. Either/Or is like the shadow of a pop hit—Brian Wilson might have written it if he spent the 1960s leaning musically into […]

23/30 r&b singer-songwriter

ana moura – casa guilhermina 

‘Janela Escancarada’ is a gorgeous opener. It captures and bottles the dreamlike state of mind Ana Moura has slipped into. Despite her melancholia, Moura is careful not to detach. Her music anchors itself to the port of tradition while embracing new world musical goods: the vocal “yee-hees” above an accordion on ‘Andorinhas’ are indelible. In […]

28/30 folk revisited review singer-songwriter

linda perhacs – parallelograms (1970)

It’s tempting to draw on some familiar names to help convey this record, but I’ll resist. That might validate the fact that Parallelograms went practically unheard until its 2003 reissue. It is a unique album, from a unique composer. The wistfulness is in tune with a woodland Aesop fable, but Perhacs’ folk isn’t a sun-glazed frolic […]