New Album: Jordan Rakei – Wallflower (2017/09/22)

:: I’m in LOVE


“Wallflower”: introverted, misunderstood, sensitive, strange and seemingly unknowable.

Newly signed to Ninja Tune, Jordan Rakei has battled his inner demons and written an inspirational, soul-stirring record in the process. Titled “Wallflower” which will be released on 22nd September 2017.

At only 25, the multi-instrumentalist, vocalist and producer – born in New Zealand to a Kiwi mother and father from the Cook Islands – is a rare talent whose distinct take on soul captures a sonic and emotional awareness many artists spend their entire careers chasing. He writes with a maturity and flair that belies his years and new album “Wallflower” sees Jordan edging beyond the peripheries of the genial, often sun-flecked sound his fans have come to know him for. The easy swing that has been the backbone of his sound from the outset is ever present, harking back to teenage days spent in his bedroom with his beloved MPC trying to emulate 9th Wonder and Pete Rock. On “Wallflower” the tools and the process have evolved – the focus is on live instrumentation – but the groove and the cadence are unmistakable, framing soul and jazz in a truly vibrant oeuvre that simultaneously recalls his predecessors The Roots and peers The Internet, Nick Hakim and Hiatus Kaiyote. 

Jordan’s whirlwind rise has been a predominately solo effort. His exceptional musical ability (he writes, sings and plays most of the instrumentation on his records himself) is accompanied by an unrelenting – yet agreeably humble – ambition. His aptitude and knack for songwriting caught the attention of tastemakers following the release of his 2014 EP “Groove Curse”. His self-released debut album “Cloak” (2016) lit the blue touch paper, earning him a coveted set at Pitchfork Avant-Garde Block Party that year; supports for the likes of Jamie Woon and NAO; and a call-up to play AMP. Drawing early support from the Soulection crew, he has collaborated with Taku, Tom Misch, FKJ, and lent vocals to the Disclosure track ‘Masterpiece’ (from their 2015 album “Caracal”) after the duo were tipped off by a friend who had seen Jordan play a tiny basement bar in Australia. At radio, Jordan has been championed at BBC R1/1Xtra by Annie Mac, Huw Stephens, Mistajam, Jamz Supernova, Toddla T plus Mary Anne Hobbs and Gilles Peterson at BBC Radio 6 Music. 

Jordan considers “Wallflower” his most personal work yet – it’s an emotive opus inspired by his own struggles with introversion and anxiety. Sonically lush and complex, yet lyrically relatable and unguarded, listeners are offered a glimpse into the mind and artistry of a musician who grapples with his own self- image and fears every day. On ‘Sorceress’ (recently supremely reworked by Photay) the ego is personified as a sinister and controlling spirit figure led by equal parts understated ethereal guitar and Jordan’s superb multi-layered vocals. New single ‘Nerve’, featuring Dave Okumu of The Invisible on guitar, is upbeat and incites a sense of renewal as its lyrics call out the fallacies within self-constructed paradigms. Elsewhere, the ska-tinged ‘Clues Blues’ is laced with trombone and saxophone by Ahmad Dayes and Wayne Francis II from South London pillars United Vibrations. 

“It’s about how the ego can fully control the way you act and perceive life,” he says. Jordan’s decision to leave his home in Brisbane for London in 2015 has had a life changing effect on his music, his career and his outlook. Just thinking about a 10,000 mile relocation was traumatic, and these feelings were exacerbated by his introversion and anxiety. However, he plucked up the courage to make the move and never looked back. 

“In Australia, I was stuck in a bubble”, Jordan explains. “When I moved to London I had to deal with my introversion through ‘exposure therapy’. Every day I met new people for a whole year. I met every producer, songwriter, and musician I could. You have to improve as a person to improve as an artist”. Building a new community in London, Jordan linked with Tom Misch, Loyle Carner, Richard Spaven and Alfa Mist – musical likeminds experimenting on the fringes of jazz, soul and hip-hop – and also met Bradley Zero, founder of South London record label and party Rhythm Section. Bradley encouraged him to try his hand at a collection of dancefloor-driven tunes which became the EP “Joy, Ease, Lightness”, released by the label at the end of 2016 under the alias Dan Kye. 

In many ways “Wallflower” is a direct emotional response to his new surroundings and is undoubtedly testament to Jordan’s personal strength, drive and overriding passion for his art as well as a reflection of his openness and eagerness to reach out and explore London’s fertile music underground. It cements not only his importance as a contemporary, and truly exhilarating, soul voice on the international stage, but his stature as a producer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist in total command of his sonic vision. [Press Release via Bandcamp]

Cover Art:

Artist: Jordan Rakei
Title of Album: Wallflower
Release Date: September 22, 2017
Label: Ninja Tune

1. Eye To Eye
2. May
3. Sorceress
4. Nerve
5. Goodbyes
6. Clues Blues
7. Chemical Coincidence
8. Carnation
9. Lucid
10. Hiding Place
11. Wallflower (feat. Kaya Thomas-Dyke)

Upcoming Tour Dates:
Sep 17 // Mercury Lounge // New York, NY
Sep 19 // Constellation Room at the Observatory // Santa Ana, CA
Sep 20 // Troubadour West Hollywood, CA Sep 22 Popscene @ Rickshaw Stop // San Francisco, CA
Sep 22 // Popscene @ Rickshaw Stop // San Francisco, CA
Oct 11 // O2 Institute3 // Birmingham, UK
Oct 12 // Thekla // Bristol, UK
Oct 13 // The Haunt // Brighton, UK
Oct 16 // Manchester Gorilla // Manchester, UK
>> The full touring schedule is available here

Follow ‘Jordan Rakei’ on:
Official Website | Facebook | Twitter | SoundCloud |  Bandcamp



New Album: Four Tet – New Energy (2017/09/21) / New Track ‘Scientists’

:: Love it Kieran.


Cover Art:

Artist: Four Tet
Title of Album: New Energy
Release Date: September 29, 2017

01 Alap
02 Two Thousand and Seventeen
03 LA Trance
04 Tremper
05 Lush
06 Scientists
07 Falls 2
08 You Are Loved
09 SW9 9SL
10 10 Midi
11 Memories
12 Daughter
13 Gentle Soul
14 Planet

Follow ‘Four Tet’ on:
Official Website | Facebook | Twitter


More ‘Four Tet’ on Music Pickings:
2015, Jan 19 – New Album: Percussions aka Four Tet – 2011 until 2014 (2015/01/13) [Full Album Stream]
2014, April 27 – New Singles: Blatant Water Cannon & Ascii Bot (2014/04/28)
2013, Sep 07 – New Album: Beautiful Rewind / First Single ‘Kool FM’
2012, Aug 23 – Peace For Earth / New Album ‘Pink’ (2012/08/20)


New Album: Zara Mcfarlane – Arise (2017/09/29) / New Track: Fussin’ and Fightin’

:: She did it again.


Tracing the musical heritage of the Caribbean, Zara McFarlane explores her interconnected vision of the diaspora.

On Arise, Zara McFarlane returns to a buoyant UK jazz scene with a head-turning third album. Exploring the musical possibilities of British-Jamaican identity, it’s a cultural exchange that’s born of London’s current musical climate. Released on Gilles Peterson’s Brownswood Recordings, it sees her working with much-feted drummer and producer Moses Boyd. Both rose through London’s Tomorrow’s Warriors programme, a finishing school for many young vanguards of the live, ascendant jazz scene springing up across the UK capital. Sharing Caribbean family heritages, it’s a product of their joint exploration of the meeting points between jazz and the rhythms of Jamaica; reggae, Kumina, calypso and nyabinghi, shaded with hints of the psychedelic.

Zara’s breakthrough 2012 track, a jazz cover of Junior Murvin’s ‘Police and Thieves’, provided a jumping off point to further explore the blurred, colourful territory in between jazz and roots-reggae. Covering Nora Dean’s ‘Peace Begins Within’, she breathes a syncopated groove into a soulful, reggae classic. A beautifully poised version of the Congos’ Fisherman teases out the poignant lyrical content of the 1977 classic. Meanwhile new, original compositions from Zara, like ‘Fussin’ and Fightin’’ and ‘Freedom Chain’, combine a deep, reverberating bass with a steady-stepping roots rhythm.

Album opener ‘Ode To Kumina’ touches on the kumina tradition brought to Jamaica by indentured labourers from The Congo in the later part of the 19th Century. Part of Zara’s deeper research into her Caribbean heritage, it alludes to a deep-rooted culture encompassing music, dance and religion. Similarly, ‘Silhouette’ arose from that same research; in this case, however, it was about how records and documents often get lost in Jamaica. “It kind of came out of the idea of black history and blackness and feeling like you’re trying to find yourself,” she explains. “Trying to be proud of your history and who you are. And never forgetting the things that brought you to where you are.”

Alongside drummer Moses Boyd on production, the album features a stellar line up of some of the key players on the London scene Binker Golding on tenor sax, Peter Edwards on piano, Shirley Tetteh on guitar, Nathaniel Cross on Trombone and an unusually restrained turn on Clarinet from Shabaka Hutchings. Shared between all of them is a tendency to find the common points between different musical ilks: from US hard bop jazz, to dub and London-rooted hybrids and permutations, the band on Arise reflect the musical diversity of their home. Boosted by new platforms, like East London showcase Church of Sound and a newly-refreshed Jazz Café, the record surfs the momentum currently propelling jazz-influenced music in the UK.

For Zara, Jamaica’s musical legacy is deeply intertwined with her sense of the place itself. Spending whole summers in the hills of Jamaica, it’s the sounds and smells which she most vividly associates with her stays there. In particular the local sound systems which were an everyday feature of the local area; be it in shops or bars, each of the small local shacks would have a sound system where they’d play music through the day and evening.

“From where my nan used to live, in Cauldwell there’s a sound system almost opposite her house,” she says. “So you feel this boom of the bass, and then all the smells of the hills and the greenery of Hanover. When you land in Jamaica and you go to walk off of the plane, the heat and the smells hit you and it feels like home away from home for me. When I hear Jamaican music, these are the senses that come.” [Press release via Bandcamp]

Cover Art:

Artist: Zara Mcfarlane
Title of Album: Arise
Release Date: September 29, 2017
Label: Brownswood Recordings

1. Ode To Kumina
2. Pride
3. Fussin’ and Fightin’
4. Peace Begins Withing
5. Stoke The Fire
6. Freedom Chain
7. Riddim Interlude
8. Allies or Enemies
9. In Between Worlds
10. Silhouette feat. Shabaka Hutchings
11. Fisherman
12. Ode to Cyril

Upcoming Tour Dates:
Oct 23 // Komedia Brighton // Brighton, UK – CANCELED
Oct 24 //  The Fleece // Bristol, UK – CANCELED
Oct 25 // Band on the Wall // Manchester, UK – CANCELED
Oct 26 // PizzaExpress Live // Birmingham, UK
Nov 03 // Ancienne Belgique – AB Club // Brussels, Belgium
Nov 03 – 05 // So What’s Next? Festival 2017 Muziekgebouw Eindhoven // Eindhoven, Netherlands
Nov 04 // Muziekgebouw Frits Philips Eindhoven // Eindhoven, Netherlands
Nov 05 // Yuca // Cologne, Germany
Nov 06 // Prince Charles // Berlin, Germany
Nov 15  // Rich Mix // London, UK
>> The full touring schedule is available here

Follow ‘Zara McFarlane’ on:
Official WebsiteFacebookTwitter


More ‘Zara McFarlane’ on Music Pickings:
2013, Dec 13 – New Album: If You Knew Her (2014/01/24) / New Track ‘Angie La La feat. Leron Thomas’ 
2012, May 09 – Police & Thieves [Cover of the Junior Murvin classic]
20111, Dec 25 – Blossom Tree (Debut Album: Until Tomorrow)
2011, Nov 03 – Out Now: Until Tomorrow


New Album: London Grammar – Truth Is A Beautiful Thing

:: Can’t wait to see you live in Hamburg in November.


Cover Art:

Artist: London Grammar
Title of Album: Truth Is A Beautiful Thing
Release Date: Juni 09, 2017
Label: Island

1 Rooting For You
2 Big Picture
3 Wild Eyed
4 Oh Woman Oh Man 
5 Hell To The Liars
6 Everyone Else
7 Non Believer 
8 Bones Of Ribbon
9 Who Am I
10 Leave The War With Me
11 Truth Is A Beautiful Thing

Upcoming Tour Dates:
Sep 16 // Fremantle Arts Centre // Fremantle, WA, Australia
Sep 17 // Fremantle Arts Centre // Fremantle, WA, Australia
Sep 19 // Margaret Court Arena // Melbourne, VIC, Australia
Sep 21 // Hordern Pavilion // Sydney, NSW, Australia
Sep 23 // Riverstage // Brisbane, QLD, Australia
Sep 25 // Sydney Opera House // Sydney, NSW, Australia
Sep 26 // Sydney Opera House // Sydney, NSW, Australia
Sep 30 // Spark Arena // Auckland, New Zealand
Oct 17 // O2 Apollo Manchester // Manchester, UK
Oct 18 // O2 Academy Leeds // Leeds, UK
>> The full touring schedule is available here

Follow ‘London Grammar’ on:
Official Website | Facebook | Twitter |Soundcloud


More ‘London Grammar’ on Music Pickings:
2017, Jan 04 – New Single: Rooting For You (2017/01/01)
2013, Sep 11 – If You Wait [Full Album Stream]
2013, 22 Aug − Debut Album: If You Wait (2013/09/09) / New Single ‘Interlude’
2013, Apr 24 − New Single: Wasting My Young Years (2013/06/16)
2013, Feb 16 − New Single: Metal & Dust (2013/02/25)
2012, Dec 20 − Debut Single: Hey Now


New Album: Grizzly Bear – Painted Ruins (2017/08/18)

:: I could listen to it all the time.


Cover Art:

Artist: Grizzly Bear
Title of Album: Painted Ruins
Release Date: August 18, 2017
Label: RCA

1. Wasted Acres
2. Mourning Sound
3. Four Cypresses
4. Three Rings
5. Losing All Sense
6. Aquarian
7. Cut-Out
8. Glass Hillside
9. Neighbors
10. Systole
11. Sky Took Hold


Upcoming Tour Dates:
Oct 01 // Kingston College // Kingston Upon Thames, UK
Oct 04 // Vicar Street // Dublin, Ireland
05 // Vicar Street // Dublin, Ireland
Oct 06 // Albert Hall // Manchester, UK
Oct 08 // O2 ABC Glasgow // Glasgow, UK
Oct 09 // O2 Academy Brixton // London, UK
Oct 10 // De La Warr Pavilion // Bexhill-On-Sea, UK
Oct 12 // Columbiahalle // Berlin, Germany
>> The full touring schedule is available here

Follow ‘Grizzly Bear’ on:
Official WebsiteFacebookTwitterMyspace

More ‘Grizzly Bear‘ on Music Pickings:
2017, Jan 05 – Listen: Sleeping Ute (Nicolas Jaar Remix)
2012, September 28 – Yet Again [Official Video]
2012, August 06 – New Single: Yet Again / New Album ‘Shields’ (2012/09/17)
2012, Jun 07 – New Song: Sleeping Ute [Worldwide Tour 2012]


New Album: Nick Mulvey – Woke Up Now (2017/09/08)

:: It´s a winner.


Cover Art:

Artist: Nick Mulvey
Title of Album: Woke Up Now
Release Date: September 8, 2017
Label: Caroline (Universal Music)

1 unconditional
2 transform your game (we remain)
3 imogen
4 myela
5 we are never apart
6 remembering
7 mountain to move
8 when the body is gone
9 lullaby
10 in your hands
11 infinite trees

Upcoming Tour Dates:
Sep 07 – 10 // Bestival 2017 // Lulworth Estate, Dorset, UK
Sep 12 // Rough Trade East // London, UK
Oct 01 //  O2 Academy Liverpool // Liverpool, UK
Oct 02 // Lemon Grove // Exeter, UK
Oct 03 // O2 Academy Bristol // Bristol, UK
October 04 // O2 Ritz Manchester // Manchester, UK
Oct 06 // The Leadmill // Sheffield, UK
Oct 07 // The Church // Leeds, UK
Oct 09 // O2 Institute Birmingham // Digbeth, UK
>> The full touring schedule is available here

Follow ‘Nick Mulvey’ on:
Official Website | Facebook | Twitter | Soundcloud


More ‘Nick Mulvey’ on Music Pickings:
2014, May 12 – Album Sampler: First Mind (2014/05/12) / New Track ‘Meet Me There’
2014, Feb 20 – New Single: Cucurucu / New Album ‘First Mind’ (14/05/12)
2013, Sep 14 – New Album: Fever to the Form 
2012, Nov 22 − New EP: The Trellis


New Album: Mount Kimbie – Love What Survives (2017/09/08) / New Track ‘Marilyn (feat. Micachu)’ & ‘Blue Train Lines (feat. King Krule)’

:: Yeah!


Cover Art:

Artist: Mount Kimbie
Title of Album: Love What Survives
Release Date: September 8, 2017
Label: Warp Records

1 Four Years and One Day
2 Blue Train Lines (feat. King Krule)
3 Audition
4 Marilyn (feat. Micachu)
5 SP12 Beat
6 You Look Certain (I’m Not So Sure) [feat. Andrea Balency]
7 Poison
8 We Go Home Together (feat. James Blake)
9 Delta
10 T.A.M.E.D
11 How We Got By (feat. James Blake)

Upcoming Tour Dates:
Oct 27 // Invisible Wind Factory // Liverpool, United Kingdom
Oct 28 // O2 Ritz Manchester // Manchester, United Kingdom
Oct 30 // Art School // Glasgow, United Kingdom
Nov 1 // O2 Institute 2 Birmingham // Birmingham, United Kingdom
Nov 2 // Motion // Bristol, United Kingdom
Nov 3 // Roundhouse // London, United Kingdom
Nov 4 // AB // Brussels, Belgium
Nov 5 // Paradiso // Amsterdam, Netherlands
Nov 7 // Parkteatret //Oslo, Norway
Nov 8 // Kagelbanan // Stockholm, Sweden
>> The full touring schedule is available here

Follow ‘Mount Kimbie’ on:
Official WebsiteFacebookTwitter


More ‘Mount Kimbie’ on Music Pickings:
2017, Apr 4 – New Track: We Go Home Together ft. James Blake
2013, Oct 29 – New EP: CSFLY Remixes (2013/10/28) / Track ‘Made To Stray’ (DJ Koze Remix)
2013, July 28 – Made To Stray [Free Download]
2013, April 28 – New Single: Blood and Form / New Album ‘Cold Spring Fault Less Youth’ (2013/05/27)
2013, Mar 27 – New Album: Cold Spring Fault Less Youth (2013/05/27) / Track ‘Made To Stray’
2011, Sep 14 – Carbonated [Official Video]