EPs. Great things, right? More detailed and varied than solitary singles ever could be, yet you can churn through multiple in an hour without feeling even the slightest pang of guilt. As we near the end of the year, the release conveyor will inevitably grind to a frustrating halt – everyone from Bonobo to Wiley is holding back until January 13th, it seems – but today is apparently a grand opportunity for a host of mini projects to build hype for the future (Jorja Smith, Laurel) or cool off after big summers (Gold Panda, Jai Wolf). There’s also a bunch of shiny new CDs to line the shelves of your local supermarkets as you gallivant around for your annual sprout replenishment and a track about the world being a cactus sung in a Sheffield-meets-Chamonix accent by that Arctic Monkeys bloke. If you’d like to see your upcoming release featured on these pages, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Justice – Woman
Almost a decade has passed since Justice first ‘D.A.N.C.E.’d their way into our hearts with a dark and sumptuous fusion of electro and disco to establish Gaspard Augé and Xavier De Rosnay as France’s foremost contemporary pair. Now, on a day when Daft Punk’s hibernation drips out its third cut – ‘I Feel It Coming,’ taken from The Weeknd’s week-away Starboy – since 2013’s Random Access Memories, their own third album appears. “Sinuous and multifaceted,” Woman‘s run comes prefaced by the intensely orchestral ‘Safe And Sound,’ a slice of sashaying delicacy in ‘Randy,’ and an onslaught of sweat from ‘Alakazam!‘
Sean Paul feat. Dua Lipa – ‘No Lie’
Sean Paul feat. Tory Lanez – ‘Tek Weh Yuh Heart’
Four weeks ago, Sean Paul re-emerged with a bang bang bang, guesting on Clean Bandit’s latest to yell in his typical fashion whilst Anne-Marie tried to sing about maternity in peace. She’s now gone and put out a stripped version of ‘Peak,’ a very good song of her own, whilst he continues his inexorable march into his new era with a brace of Island-released records of his own. ‘Tek Weh Yuh Heart,’ which my laptop refuses to leave intact, sees Tory Lanez return the favour from Paul’s ‘Luv’ remix by bobbing alongside for a few minutes of Caribbean lethargy, however ‘No Lie’ seems poised for greatness, even though its motoring beat is iced with Dua Lipa singing about things being “lit” as she picks up her first and best feature credit to date.
Bruno Mars – 24K Magic
“Nah mate,” said Rehana Nurmahi in her review of the titular effort from Bruno Mars’ latest little more than a month ago. As tempting as it was at the time to agree, especially after its first 24 seconds ranked amongst the most agonising of 2016’s big hits, further exploration of the mildly goofy chest-flashing OutRun-oozing synthpop route he’s now exploring seems to be making me more optimistic. One can only hope that the remainder of 24K Magic, which only clocks in at 33 minutes, will follow suit.
The Last Shadow Puppets – ‘Les Cactus’
No, ‘Les Cactus’ is not a song about a cactus called Les.
Yes, it is a cover of a 50-year-old French-language single by Jacques Dutronc.
No, I have no idea what’s going on with Alex Turner and Miles Kane as they continue the peculiar run towards the release of The Dream Synopsis EP in two weeks.
Yes, this is brilliant regardless.
The Killers – Don’t Waste Your Wishes
“Christmas in November? No! No! No!”
And thus ends my attempt at writing a Christmas song in the style of Homer Simpson. Perhaps largely due to my status as a November baby (who will indeed have aged somewhat further by the next time This Week In Records rolls around), I consider any mention of the festive season before December 1st to be grossly premature. As such, one month ago I referred to Pentatonix, an incredible a cappella quintet for whom I have the utmost respect and adoration, as bastards for releasing a winter compilation.
For The Killers, however, I will make an exception. Where nobody bothers to make real Christmas music anymore, the Las Vegas foursome has put out a cracking one for AIDS charities each year since 2005, even in times when it’s seemed as if they’d permanently gone their own ways. With ‘I’ll Be Home For Christmas’ the newest entry to their compendium, Don’t Waste Your Wishes finally brings everything together on a single disc, including the witty ‘Don’t Shoot Me Santa’ and the barnstorming ‘The Cowboys’ Christmas Ball.’
Selected Other Releases
Bridget Mendler – Nemesis EP
DNCE – DNCE
dodie – Intertwined EP
Gold Panda – Your Good Times Are Just Beginning EP
Jai Wolf – Kindred Spirits EP
Jorja Smith – Project 11 EP
Laurel – Park EP
Little Mix – Glory Days
Metallica – Hardwired…To Self-Destruct
Now That’s What I Call Music! 95
Tommy Trash – Group Chat EP
Troye Sivan – Blue Neighbourhood: The Remixes
Animal Collective – ‘Mountain Game’
Anne-Marie – ‘Peak’ (Stripped)
AronChupa feat. J & The People – ‘Bad Water’
Bag Raiders feat. Mayer Hawthorne – ‘Beat Me To The Punch’
Britney Spears feat. Tinashe – ‘Slumber Party’
Carmody – ‘The Light Of Me’
Childish Gambino – ‘Redbone’
deadmau5 feat. Grabbitz – ‘Let Go’
DVBBS & CMC$ feat. Gia Koka – ‘Not Going Home’
easyFun feat. Noonie Bao – ‘Monopoly’
Hare Squead – ‘Herside Story’
John Legend feat. Chance The Rapper – ‘Penthouse Floor’
John Mayer – ‘Love On The Weekend’
Kylie Minogue – ‘Night Fever’
Loyle Carner – ‘The Isle Of Arran’
Loyle Carner feat. Kwes – ‘Florence’
Lupe Fiasco feat. Bianca Sings – ‘Made In The USA’
Mahalia – ‘Marry Me’
Morgan Page feat. Lissie – ‘Don’t Give Up’
Nas, Dave East, Lin-Manuel Miranda & Aloe Blacc – ‘Wrote My Way Out’
Naughty Boy feat. Kyla & Popcaan – ‘Should’ve Been Me’
Noah Cyrus feat. Labrinth – ‘Make Me (Cry)’
OneRepublic – ‘Kids’ (SeeB Remix)
Post Malone – ‘Patient’
Rag’n’Bone Man – ‘Human’ (Rudimental Remix)
Rick Ross feat. 2 Chainz & Gucci Mane – ‘Buy Back The Block’
RIVRS – ‘Trouble’
Run The Jewels feat. BOOTS – ‘2100’
Sia – ‘Never Give Up’
The Big Moon – ‘Formidable’
The Weeknd – ‘Party Monster’
The Weeknd feat. Daft Punk – ‘I Feel It Coming’
Usher – ‘Wait For It’
Vaults – ‘Hurricane’