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Runs rings around the competition

Paul Weller - Saturns Pattern

This 12th solo outing from the Saturnine elder statesman of the post-punk wars runs rings abound the competition

  • A celebration of Chic-like good times

    Snoop Dogg - Bush

    Snoop forgoes the sound that made him famous on this laid back thirteenth solo outing

  • The UK-based Velocity Trio: experimental daring.

    Dennis Rollins' Velocity Trio Symbiosis

    UK trombone veteran Dennis Rollins cooks up some funk-tinged, bluesy jazz and more moody chamber tunes on this second album from Velocity Trio, which also includes a lively take on Pink Floyd's Money.

  • Cocky synth pop bravado riddled with self-doubt

    The Wombats - Glitterbug

    The Wombats go from indie landfill to hyperventilating synth overkill on this tiresome and tawdry third album

  • Sound & Color is the sound of a band on a questing mission

    Alabama Shakes - Sound & Color

    The surprise break-out band of 2012 ditch the soul, blues, gospel gumbo for a more adventurous follow-up

  • Fluency and striking imagination: Wes Montgomery

    Wes Montgomery In the Beginning

    The Who's Peter Townshend idolised guitarist Wes Montgomery as a young teen and he writes a two-page appreciation of the musician in the liner notes to this delightful 2-Cd set.

  • Mark Murphy: the pathos is underlined all the more keenly by suave treatments that upend the expected mood of sadness in his versions of love songs.

    Mark Murphy Shadows

    Recorded in Slovenia over two days in June 1996, the Mark Murphy album, Shadows, was only released late last year, a rare, belated dispatch from the veteran jazz singer who Ella Fitzgerald regarded as one of the best.

  • Kenny Wheeler's valedictory: melancholy and sensual

    Kenny Wheeler Songs for Quintet

    The British jazz musician Kenny Wheeler recorded his last album, Songs for Quinitet at Abbey Road in December 2013, prior to his passing in September 2014, aged 84. The valedictory mood mixes melancholy, bluesy swing and Latin bravura.

  • A hugely accomplished debut album

    Cry Monster Cry - Rhythm of Dawn

    Dublin brothers Jamie and Richie Martin craft a spooked folk rock classic with their debut album

  • The image suggests violence but what we get is sensual delight through the hands of the oud master Anouhar Brahem.

    Anouar Brahem Souvenance

    In advance of his appearance at the National Concert Hall on April 11, savour the hypnotic secrets of Anouar Brahim's music for oud, quartet and string orchestra on this new two-CD set.

  • A warped lullaby for the weird at heart

    Ghostpoet - Shedding Skin

    Coventry-born Obaro Ejimiwe darts in and out of the darkness on his excellent third album

  • Beguiling and bittersweet: El Cuchi Bien Temperado

    Pablo Márquez El Cuchi Bien Temperado

    This is a truly delightful solo guitar record which RTÉ Lyric Fm's fabulous nightly programme The Blue of the Night has been playing tracks from regularly in recent weeks.

  • Rumpus is another in a series of archive Tubby Hayes recordings currently being issued.

    The Tubby Hayes Big Band - Rumpus

    Waterford guitar legend Louis Stewart features on this live recording from 1969 led by Tubby Hayes, the jazz band leader who played on the scores for the films, Alfie and The Italian Job.

  • Sleater Kinney - No Cities to Love

    Back after an eight-year hiatus, Sleater Kinney lash out a ferocious and powerful statement of intent on their comeback album

  • Eithne Ní Uallacháin: a deeply sensitive interpreter of songs from the Irish tradition

    Eithne Ní Uallacháin Bilingua

    Eithne Ní Ualllacháin's untimely passing in 1999 deprived this country of one of its finest singers. Her first solo album is a brilliant legacy.