Review: The dust of the reissued (and since sold out) Australia Part II has barely settled and boom... Manchester pop soul fusionists Menage A Trois present their third ode to balmier climes. Retaining that soft-focused delicate signature they've had since day one, each track quivers with subtlety and supple detail. With tracks such as "Paris" coming on strong like George Michael, "Homecoming" really bringing the loin-girding torches out and "Hey" whisking us off on the plushest skank we've ever experienced, this builds on the firm foundations the band have maintained throughout. Bon voyage.
Review: Sarah Plapinger may have made her name running the label Neon Gold and effectively working as a pop tastemaker, yet she's no slouch when it comes to making her own music, as Ms Mr - her duo with Max Hershenow - proves. However, 'How Does It Feel' has more to do it than mere high-gloss surface and state-of-the-art production - there's a rich vein of melancholy to these hook-laden songs, balancing out broken promises and existential unease even whilst figuratively dwelling on the dancefloor. Colourful yet deep, stylish yet emotional, this is adult pop with a heart, something of a rarity in cynical times.
Review: Be With's latest must-have reissue isn't some obscure, dusty old gem, but rather Roisin Murphy's long out of print 2007 set "Overpowered". It received lavish critical praise on its initial release, with reviewers warming to the album's colourful and exciting mix of synth-pop, string-laden post-disco, retro-futurist house, grungy electro-pop, revivalist boogie and Moroder-ish Machine funk. It remains a fine set. For starters, it contains some of Murphy's most endearing and memorable songs, with her chosen producers - a list that includes Groove Armada's Andy Cato, Seiji and Mark de Clive-Lowe, legendary string arranger Larry Gold and Sheffield pals DJ Parrot and Dean Honer - conjuring up brilliant backing tracks that giddily eschew easy categorization.