Tom Jenkinson is a restless musical soul. For his latest album he's dropped the Squarepusher moniker after 'Just A Souvenir' in favour of the cryptic Shobaleader One tag, which also includes his new band of Strobe Nazard on keys, Sten t'Mech and Arg Nution on guitar, and Company Laser on drums. Apparently this new set up came about when "Last summer a bunch of kids got in contact with me...Their idea was that they wanted the 'fantasy group' I had written about in connection with 'Just A Souvenir' to become a real entity that would record and tour...".
Whether this band is real or a figment of his playfully overactive imagination is up to you (or any forthcoming live shows), but it's certainly enabled him to articulate his music in a very, very different manner. There's heavy hints of French cartoon theme tunes, the proggiest of prog-pop, super-slick R'n'B and hirsute fingertap soloing, all delivered with the most overwrought muso cleverness. If you loved the last album, you'll be all over this one. Keep up with him if you can.
Daft Punk's debut is pure synapse-tweaking brilliance. In the Nineties, when artists like the CHEMICAL BROTHERS and FATBOY SLIM were bringing in guest-star vocalists and sampling rock records, and ad executives were strip-mining club beats, French duo Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem-Christo proved that techno and house could be as elastic, catchy and, at times, as funny as the poppiest pop without diluting its hypnotically driving, acidic essence.
Junk marks M83's first studio album in over four years, the last album being Hurry Up, We're Dreaming. Gonzalez noted that he was inspired by 1970s and 1980s television shows such as Punky Brewster and Who's the Boss?, stating, "I feel like TV shows are starting to sound and look the same. There's no more passion anymore. So this album is a tribute to those old-fashioned shows."
Crystal Castles songs could once be split into two camps, the "pretty" ones and the "aggressive" ones. (III) is by a large margin the most focused record by the band, and front vocalist Alice Glass' lyrics take on a new importance.