By Francesca Frankis, Music Editor & Guy Marcham, Deputy Music Editor
Another outstanding month of music is upon us with so many incredible albums just being released. Be sure to grace your spotify playlists and booming bedroom speakers with this hand picked collection of the month's best records.
Blood Orange - Fields (Oct 11th via Cedille)
In his upcoming album Fields, Blood Orange aka Dev Hynes will be entering uncharted territory. Produced by Hynes, but performed by Chicago based ensemble Third Coat Percussion, Fields will be an entirely classical work. It is easy to imagine the soothing cinematic movements of Hynes’ creations lending themselves well to an orchestral sound. If recent album Angel’s Pulse is anything to go by, expect Fields to be filled to the brim with wonderful crescendos, subdued interludes and a enveloping ambience painted throughout.
Elbow - Giants of All Sizes (Oct 11th via Polydor Records)
It’s hard to think of a more soothing voice than that of Guy Garvey’s. His gentle Mancunian whisper and tender delivery offers a dependable shoulder to cry on during the gloomiest of days. Most recent album Little Fictions epitomised the band at their heart rendering best with an understated yet impressive array of grand violin orchestration and touching poetic lyricism. Yet, Garvey’s usual poignant delicacy has since been traded for a biting take on our hapless political climate. No more will Garvey be swooning into the hearts with his trademark gentle brush and glimmer of earnest hope but instead taking on the political demagogues and lack of national unity of our modern age. ‘Dexter and Sinister’ sees Garvey poised to battle armed with a series of screeching guitars and lyrical angst singing the lyric - ‘unstuck and the whole archipelago is rocking like a suicide pedalo at a high tide’. Who thought a biting takedown of Brexit and Britain’s spiral into national disunity could be so poetic?
Big Thief – Two Hands (Oct 11th via 4AD)
American alternative indie folk band, Big Thief, are certainly becoming one of the most exquisite bands of this decade. Not only have they released one of the most impressive albums of the year so far entitled U.F.O.F already but will also be releasing yet another album this month. ‘Two Hands’ promises to be just as tantalising with Adrianne Lenker’s softly woven catharsis and emotional veracity creating a heart wrenching indie folk tapestry. An album that could just enter the realms of masterpiece.
Foals - Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost Part II (Oct 18th via Transgressive)
British math rock titans are set to release the second instalment of their double album Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost and reach what could be a massive turning point in their career. The band have already emphatically triumphed over the boyish Reading Festival Crowd with the help of fiery pyro and indie rock bangers such as ‘What Went Down’ and ‘Inhaler’. Yet can Foals make the next leap? This album comes with the band at the peak of their powers and the biggest they’ve ever been. Hotly tipped for a Glastonbury headline set after their storming and blistering surprise show The Park at this year’s event. But can the band pull of the extraordinary leap from indie rock arena behemoths to stadium filling and Worthy Farm headlining modern day legends? There sure is a lot resting on this album. Singles such as ‘The Runner’ and the heavy guitar onslaught of ‘Black Bull’ are certainly enough to excite. Yet they may need to dip into their poppier ‘My Number’ esque groove to truly expand on their already growing fan base and transform into world conquerors.
Vagabon - Vagabon (Oct 18th via Nonesuch)
Cameroon born Laetita Tamko drifts from her initial guitar based indie lo-fi for a brand-new polished pop sheen. Now sprinkled with hypnotic snyths and chilled electronic drums beats – Vagabon is not an artist to rest on her laurels. Backed by her constantly expanding soundscape, her timbre vocals take centre stage. A reflective and inward looking album that promises to cement Tamko’s name as an experimental artist pushing boundaries and the forms of her art. Based off first two singles ‘Flood’ and Water Me Down’, her transition from indie rock darling to surging poptastic lead has indeed been a success. In a similar vein to Sharon Van Etten’s inclusion of electronic synth and pulsing melodies on Remind Me Tomorrow – Vagabon will be hoping that she too can reach new heights. A bold artistic new direction.
Rex Orange County - Pony (Oct 25th via Sony)
Rex Orange County has always been good at telling a story; set apart by his poetic lyrical style, often layered on top of nostalgia inducing simple melodies and oddball rhythms. Recent single 10/10 offered a taste of a slightly more refined Rex Orange County ‘version 2.0’. Swapping out his trademark piano part for gliding synthesisers, a punchy pop drum and modulating vocal effects. Whilst his musical style is perhaps drifting towards new horizons, Rex Orange County’s lyrical subject still remains practically unchanged from the teenage angst he once sang about on Bcos u will never b free back in 2016.