Favourite Five Recently Reviewed CDs

Five of the best albums from the recent postings at New Music From Elsewhere. Music too good to let slide into the archives. The Elsewhere place if you are looking for a quick fix of great and interesting albums.

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Robert Plant and the Sensational Space Shifters: Lullaby and the Ceaseless Roar (Warners)

15 Sep 2014

Although singing a generous number of highly reconfigured Led Zeppelin songs at his 2013 Vector show with this band, Plant continues to distance himself from Zepp's hard rock-cum-folk catalogue, leaving former bandmate Jimmy Page to mine the past while he moves further sideways through world music, American country, rebooted blues and even simple pop. With the Space Shifters discreetly... > Read more

Embrace Another Fall

The New Pornographers: Brill Bruisers (4AD)

15 Sep 2014

At times sounding filled with the overconfident swaggering, embellished pop of McCartney around Magical Mystery Tour or early Mika and Empire of the Sun glitterball fun, at others chugging like glam-rock or referring to the Mamas and the Papas and widescreen power-pop aimed at stadiums, this enormously enjoyable sixth outing by the Canadian collective around songwriter AC Newman deftly dance... > Read more

Champions of Red Wine

Mirel Wagner: When the Cellar Children See The Light of Day (subPop)

8 Sep 2014    2

Pitched somewhere between a weary self-analysing Kurt Cobain acoustic session, Mazzy Star raised on death ballads and P.J Harvey's most introspective work, this concise collection – 10 songs, 32 minutes – comes from an unlikely but powerfully impressive source. Wagner is a 23-year old Ethiopian adoptee who was raised in Finland from the age of 18 months and considers... > Read more

What Love Looks Like

Spoon: They Want My Soul (Spunk)

1 Sep 2014    1

For New Zealand listeners, there is a peculiar but interesting cover on this album by the never-predictable psych-cum-alt rockers Spoon from Texas. It is their rather straight version of Ann-Margret's bluesy I Just Don't Understand which the Beatles used to do live and which Tommy Adderley covered in the early Sixties in a very Merseybeat style. It's hardly out of place here on an album... > Read more

Let Me Be Mine

Sinead O'Connor: I'm Not Bossy, I'm the Boss (Nettwerk/Southbound)

25 Aug 2014

Too often in popular culture, controversy and craziness are substitutes for, or get in the way of us seeing, real talent. O'Connor has courted her share of both and that often blurred the focus of her. Strangeness still circles her private life, but this straightforward album – 12 well-arranged, emotionally and musically direct songs – finds her at top form on economic songs,... > Read more

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