Short

Here’s 1 album designed for plants, and 7 others for humans we’re recommending from June 2019

We make models of buses to relax, and listen to this music

Any suggestion that Steve Bannon helped compile this list – of our favourite albums from June 2019 – is just loony leftist conspiracy. Now get on and listen.

Artist: Skepta*
Title: Ignorance Is Bliss
Label: Boy Better Know
What is it? The Mercury Prize-winning wordsmith’s latest album that gives us two things we need right now: a strong articulation of contemporary dissatisfaction, and a Sophie Ellis Bextor grime sample.
L&Q says: “an antidote to the relentless political commentary from all corners of popular culture, a return to grime that is about pushing the street level experience of London — of life — into frenetic, aggressive, joyful noise.”

Read Katie Beswick’s full review.

Artist: Vanishing Twin
Title: The Age of Immunology
Label: Fire
What is it? A psychedelic, hallucinogenic space-adventure with dizzyingly hypnotic songs about cryonic suspension and science fiction cinema in 1950s France.
L&Q says: “The album plays like a futuristic estate agent trying to pitch a life in an alien world.”

Read Tristan Gatward’s full review.

Artist: Mort Garson
Title: Mother Earth’s Plantasia
Label: Sacred Bones
What is it? A rare collision of electronic pioneering and cheesy trend-chasing; an album made and largely lost for 43 years, created with the sole aim of cultivating your telepathic, lie-detecting, music-digging houseplants.
L&Q says: “Half an hour of inviting, soft-edged utopianism where tunes straight out of an easy-listening compilation are buffed to a sparkle by theremin-like sweeps and space-age twinkles.”

Read Sam Walton’s full review, and how this album nurtured his basil plant back to life.

Artist: black midi
Title: Schlagenheim
Label: Rough Trade
What is it? The debut from Britain’s most talked about new band, with vocals that have had descriptions ranging from “froggy” to “a duck on rohypnol”.
L&Q says: “Schlagenheim possesses a genuine sense of experimentalism – just for the wonderment of creating something that feels new, rather than simply for the sake of it.”

Read Joe Goggins’s full review and Luke Cartledge’s cover feature from last month.

Artist: Freddie Gibbs & Madlib
Title: Bandana
Label: Columbia
What is it? The team-up of mythical beatmaker Madlib and blunt thug rapper Freddie Gibbs return with a carefree, heavy-handed and feature-full sophomore.
L&Q says: “It’s goosebump worthy. For all the giddy, unruly energy, each song on Bandana flows together to make a poetic, poignant body of work.”

Read Stephen Butchard’s full review.

Artist: Mark Ronson
Title: Late Night Feelings
Label: Columbia
What is it? An album that’s good enough both to reunite the pop-deniers with the mainstream and the pop-lovers with their favourite forgotten format.
L&Q says: “It’s one long night of sad bangers at Club Heartbreak and we’re all going down, one pendulum swing of a broken heart disco ball at a time.”

Read Tristan Gatward’s full review.

Artist: Bill Callahan
Title: Shepherd In A Sheepskin Vest
Label: Drag City
What is it? The first new songs – twenty of them – in almost six years from Bill Callahan, switching between ruminating autobiography and humourous character-study.
L&Q says: “lyrical motifs run across the album concerning water and family heraldry, the resetting quality of morning and the titular sheep-herding, and adjoining songs introduce or back-announce each other to the extent that there’s a sense that any skipping or shuffled playback of the album would damage the desired effect, like pieces removed from a jigsaw puzzle.”

Read Sam Walton’s full review.

Artist: Kate Tempest
Title: The Book of Traps and Lessons
Label: Fiction
What is it? Another Mercury-nominated wordsmith, with a piercing collection of stories about Brexit, Jo Cox, Grenfell and Brexit again, crafted alongisde Rick Rubin and Dan Carey.
L&Q says: “It’s bleak, bitter stuff. Tempest only gets away with this downtrodden preaching – and her occasionally hokey narrative devices – because of her deep expressiveness. Her voice cracks, and digs and reaches, constantly yearning for connection with the listener.”

Read Stephen Butchard’s full review.

*we release this was released on the final day of May, but, well…

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