Review: There's a carefree, lackadaisical and generally upbeat disposition running through this incredibly welcome record from Devendra Banhart. Something of an enigma - poet, artist, actor and (of course) singer/songwriter - we have the sunshine of his adopted Californian home to thank for this one, with the album nodding to the slick and inviting beach pop said state invented. There's plenty more going on here than besides well polished niceness, though. Each delicate note is played with a purpose that's feels far more commanding than the loose vibe, background choruses recreate the glory days of soft soul with pinpoint precision, while the range of instruments at play is nothing short of impressive. It's unlikely you'll hear a nicer thing this year, and if you do we'll eat our words at the first opportunity.
Review: For this year's Record Store Day, Biffy Clyro has decided to cover two big tunes, and has said they will donate all proceeds to Tiny Changes, a mental health charity set up in memory of Scott Hutchison. A-side 'Modern Leper' is a dense, angst ridden rework that previously was available on a Frightened Rabbit tribute album, while flip over this limited white 7" and you'll find 'Modern Love' which was performed at Howard Stern's Bowie tribute concert in 2019. There's rawness in the whole thing, from the wailing vocals to the walls of fuzzy guitar.