The Hazards of HMV

Today, on my first day back home from university, I ventured to the local shopping centre, in search of suitable gifts for my mother. As per usual, my travels took me to HMV where, having found two appropriate DVDs (Brief Encounter, The Last King Of Scotland), I had a scout around the rapidly dwindling music section, in search of some CDs. Predictably, I didn’t find what I was looking for, but it did stir in me the desire to list the next batch of new albums that I’m looking forward to gaining possession of – hopefully by fully legal means, in this new era of Spotify et al!

  • The Decemberists – The Hazards Of Love. As I write this, I’m listening to the band performing this album, in its entirety, at SXSW, on a specially prepared NPR Podcast, and it sounds intriguing, ambitious and enthralling.
  • The Yeah Yeah Yeahs – It’s Blitz! Reviews for this seem to remark upon the band’s current flirting with slower, more electronic songs. For me, it’s the latest opportunity to hear an example of Dave Sitek’s mind-bending production methods.
  • Doves – Kingdom Of Rust. Right now, I have a fixation with the album-opener, Jetstream, which sounds like Krautrock crossed with Vangelis. This album could be absolutely tremendous, marking a change of fortunes for the three-piece in the same vein as the good luck that befell Elbow, last year.
  • Dan Deacon – Bromst. Having devoted half an hour to the recent Pitchfork.tv documentary about the making of this album, it sounds like a suspiciously important work, pushing Deacon’s compositional skills into a new arena of production values and live, organic orchestration.
  • Art Brut – Art Brut vs. Satan. I’ve never really got into Art Brut, believing them to be yet another punky British band like all the others that I despise. But the curiously admiring reviews their albums have received may persuade me to check out their third long-player in greater detail.
  • Sonic Youth – The Eternal. New Sonic Youth albums are never going to re-invent the wheel in the same manner as Daydream Nation, but the chances are that it’ll be a cohesive, engaging collection of songs that add further credence to my unerring belief in their brilliance and importance.
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