Review: To live a life with harmony is some of the first lyrics spent on Aldous Harding's anticipated Designer album, and she gives us plenty here. Easy going '90s coastal pop nostalgia is subtly blended into folky storytelling of up-front, breathy vocals, strumming and finger picked guitars, to acoustic drums and various strokes of piano. Patti Smith influences, to Nico, Kate Bush and even Cat Power similarities and inspirations are there to be found on this LP too. And with the New Zealand singer-songwriter already making quite the impression with her Party LP from two years ago, her debut on the always impressing 4AD, this sophomore album looks to conjure up more of her sweet and dreamy flow yet.
Review: On her fifth solo album, singer and songwriter Jesca Hoop teams up with UK producer John Parish, best known for his work with singer-songwriter PJ Harvey. "Stonechild" marks a slight sonic seachange here with the American arguably delivering her quietest, most contemplative studio work yet. Cryptic confessionals, fabled tales and spiritual expression are just some of the more subdued themes that come up across these 11 songs, and with environmental concerns and emotional harmonies both voiced through vocals and guitars, Jesca Hoop lacks no fear in chronicling her take of exploring the depths of one's own abyss.