The Best Albums Of February 2014

Katy B and Wild Beasts feature amongst our picks...

In an ideal world, all albums would be made equal. We don’t live in an ideal world.

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Wild Beasts – ‘Present Tense’
(Domino Records, released February 24th)

“As always, Wild Beasts’ songs are unusually intimate, and the electronic evolution of ‘Present Tense’ captures their characteristically microscopic explorations of human interaction. The subsequent tension is palpable in ‘New Life’, a beautiful, soaring track with dark keys conjuring up celestial imagery, Tom Fleming’s voice a mesmeric instrument unto itself.”

Read the full review
Read our interview with Wild Beasts

‘Sweet Spot’

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St Vincent – ‘St Vincent’
(Loma Vista/Republic, released February 24th)

“Every song bashes together classic pop with new surprises, pushing this album into must-have territory. There are the seductive tones of ‘Huey Newton’, ending in a Flaming Lips-like fuzz fest; the eccentric concoction of ‘Regret’, where her previous life with Sufjan Stevens and The Polyphonic Spree shines through; and the Byrne-loving ‘Psychopath’. The devil’s in the detail, and it makes for a brilliant record.”

Read the full review
Read our interview with St Vincent

‘Digital Witness’

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Temples – ‘Sun Structures’
(Heavenly Recordings, released February 10th)

“Temples have here crafted a truly mesmerising debut album. It commences verging on Beach Boys conviviality before evolving seamlessly into a Simon & Garfunkel-like classic folk marvel, a melting pot of euphonic sounds.”

Read the full review
Read our interview with Temples

‘Mesmerise’

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Katy B – ‘Little Red’
(Rinse/Columbia, released February 10th)

“Thematically darker than her Mercury Prize-nominated ‘On A Mission’ debut, glossier production from Geeneus suggests the girl born Kathleen Brien, still only 24, has swapped the sweat-soaked walls of Vauxhall’s grimier nightspots for the shimmering chrome of London’s super-clubs.”

Read the full review
Read our interview with Katy B

‘Crying For No Reason’

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Beck – ‘Morning Phase’
(Virgin EMI, released February 24th)

“‘Morning’ is a delicate triumph with its clean, simple melodies and reaching vocal, and ‘Heart Is A Drum’ possesses gentle harmonies and soft, layered vocals that’ll strike a chord with fans of The Shins. Although tracks like ‘Turn Away’ and ‘Wave’ pour the strings on thickly, meeting the theme of emerging from dark, soul-searching nights, the easy-going ‘Blackbird Chain’ and ‘Blue Moon’ ensure this never feels like an album exclusively plumbing the depths of introspection.”

Read the full review
Read our interview with Beck

‘Blue Moon’

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Bombay Bicycle Club – ‘So Long, See You Tomorrow’
(Universal/Island, released February 3rd)

“The wealth of riffs is remarkable, like an encyclopedia of popular music grew legs and formed a band. Evoking memories of My Bloody Valentine, The Sundays, James, The Beach Boys and plenty more, the whole thing whizzes past like a raucous carnival. BBC’s ambition was there for all to hear on their last record, but it is with ‘So Long, See You Tomorrow’ that they have fully realised it.”

Read the full review
Read our interview with Bombay Bicycle Club

‘Luna’

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Lots of great albums were released in February – check out Clash’s latest LP reviews here

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