Playlist – August 2011

Astrid Williamson – Pour

Haunting piano work, arresting vocals and slick beats mark a new chapter in Astrid Williamson’s musical career. Drawing on her classical background and teaming up with Leo Abrahams, who has worked with the likes of Brian Eno, Grace Jones and Jarvis Cocker, Williamson releases Pour as the lead single off her forthcoming album Pulse on August 8.

Kill It Kid – Heart Rested WithYou

A hit from this year’s SXSW, British band Kill It Kid manage to blend Americana with a traditional blues sensibility and make it unique without it ever being trite. The band are also working with Leo Abrahams, and have had their sound realised through 1950s American catalogue guitars and broken ten-watt amps. The band release their new album Feet Fall Heavy on One Little Indian on September 19.

Benjamin Francis Leftwich – Atlas Hands

Following from the release of his critically acclaimed debut venture, Last Smoke Before The Snowstorm, BFL releases the second single to be taken from the album Atlas Hands on September 4. Atlas Hands does sound a lot like his first release, Box of Stones, but it’s still a solid release from one of the brightest starts on the alternative-acoustic scene. The EP release of Atlas Hands also comes with a brilliant Mike Skinner remix which is well worth a listen.

CANT – Answer

CANT is Chris Taylor, better known as the bassist for indie folk band Grizzly Bear. In 2009, Taylor founded a record label, Terrible Records, which aimed to spend more time working with and giving exposure to other artists. CANT’s first release Answer (September 9) marks a startling change in sonic direction for the indie rocker. Answer is mellow, electronic and subdued. It’s also one of the best songs I’ve heard all year.

Bjork – Crystalline

One of the most prolific and acclaimed artists of the last 20 years released this as the first single off her forthcoming album, Biophilia, on June 28. The song is being fully realised as a single today, complete with an iPad app developed specially for the release. The album is being termed an “app album” being the first to be produced partially on the iPad but also developed in conjunction with Apple who are helping release a series of apps. Bjork herself described it as a multi-media collection “encompassing music, apps, internet, installations, and live shows.” If anything else, it will be an interesting addition to her body of work. This single jumps straight in with pace, bringing a strange soundscape mixing electronic vibes with a complete DnB breakdown for the last forty seconds.

Have You Heard This Yet? Robyn Sherwell