A ROUNDUP of the latest musical releases.
Two Door Cinema Club
Rating: * * * *
The award-winning Northern Irish trio follow that show-shuddering performance at the Olympic closing ceremony with a splendid second album crammed with melody and a hint of magic. Such undiluted pop devotions are hot-wired to the 1980s, right down to the rhythm guitar chops, with songs such as Settle having a familiar charm. There is a vocal pitch and tone shared with Arcade Fire, suggesting similar global success beckons. Sleep Alone is already firmly ingrained in people’s heads, and is the catchiest of reminders that the band is one of the most potent purveyors of blissful pop for grown-ups in the country – and beyond.
Download this: Settle, Sleep Alone
Rating: * * *
The previous two albums have been intense smoky affairs, chock full of backroom blues and atmosphere. Here though, Chan Marshall, for she is Cat Power, chooses to break from that successful format to produce a much cleaner and clinical record. The multi-layered Silent Machine is an epic piece of electronica, the title track is agreeably woolly, then Ruin is clean-cut and concise. Shirley Ellis would not recognise 3,6,9 from her huge hit The Clapping Song, then Real Life totters in all serious. This is a new(ish) direction but not a radical departure, and is an uncertain statement as a result.
Download this: Silent Machine, Peace And Love
Miles Davis Quintet
Zurich 1960: Swiss Radio Days Jazz Series Volume 31
TCB TCB02312, £12.99
Rating: * * *
Recorded in Zurich in 1960 by the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation, this is another knockout set from the same Jazz at the Philharmonic concert that has already, recently, furnished us with CDs of the Stan Getz Quartet and the Oscar Peterson Trio in action. This one is especially notable as it marks one of the last occasions when trumpeter Miles Davis and saxophonist John Coltrane played together onstage, following their five-year stint together, and they play some of their best-loved tracks, among them If I Were A Bell, So What and All Blues.
Download this: So What, All Blues/Bye Bye
Copperfish Records CPFCD005, £13.99
Rating: * * * *
It’s journey’s end for the outstanding Highland fiddler as he completes his musical peregrination through the landscapes of his homeland, and ancestry, in the final album of the Strathglass Trilogy. His great love and command of the fiddle’s wide-ranging abilities carry the contrasting textures and rhythms, augmented by eight other instrumentalists, from the opening old slow air to an equivalent ending, by way of new dance tunes in old traditions, all set with palpable emotion. Carefully made, the album is powerful, modest and moving.
Download this: Unknown Air
Piano Concertos 20, 21
DG 479 0061, £9.99
Rating: * * * * *
Given the tendency of modern composers to spend months creating even the shortest concert work, Mozart’s prodigious rate of output seems hardly credible. Yet the Vienna premieres of his Piano Concertos Nos 20 and 21 took place within a month of one another.
If Mozart was a child prodigy, the Canadian pianist Jan Lisiecki, who here performs both works with assurance and skill, appears something of an equivalent: signed up by Deutsche Grammophon at the age of 15, he is one to watch.
Download this: Piano Concerto No 20, Rondo
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Weather for Edinburgh
Sunday 19 May 2013
Temperature: 10 C to 16 C
Wind Speed: 8 mph
Wind direction: North
Temperature: 9 C to 20 C
Wind Speed: 7 mph
Wind direction: West