5 albums we’re listening to in March
1. Miike Snow - iii, out now
The Swedes should be charging others for lessons in how to build catchy pop tunes. Electro pop trio Miike Snow have successfully parlayed the producing skills of Christian Karlsson and Pontus Winnberg and the vocals of Andrew Wyatt (last heard of Flume's 'Some Minds') into two popular albums, and despite admitting to Spin they didn't know when the third album was coming - it all came together. With two catchy singles (the bold, brassy and soulful 'Heart is Full' and the infectious beat-driven 'Ghenghis Khan') the album is full of slick production tricks, clever sampling, and the kind of yearning, lovelorn lyrics you only notice after the third listen.
2. Elizabeth Rose - Intra, out now
An Australian DJ/singer who been skirting around the EDM scene for a few years now (she's previously lent her vocal chords to Flight Facilities and The Aston Shuffle), Intra sees the singer branch out into her own LP. Rose has an obvious love of '90s and early noughties R&B/Pop (case in point: 'Shoulda Coulda Woulda') and she's called on contemporaries like Chrome Sparks, M-Phazes, Remi (on 'Playing with Fire') as well as Jay Z and Missy Elliot's producer Jimmy Douglas to give cred to her powerhouse vocals and sassy 'Don't mess with me' lyrics.
3. Poliça - United Crushes, out now
It's the erratic drum beat, eerie synths and soaring vocal range of Channy Leaneagh that hooked listeners to the slow-burn intensity of Poliça's debut album Give You the Ghost. On their third LP, the same elements are there (eg. 'Lime Habit'), but with less intensity and frenetic energy than the preceding albums. While you'd never describe Poliça as easy listening, there's an airiness to the sonic landscape and more room to breathe on this album, juxtaposed with the politically loaded nature of its lyrics.
4. Matt Corby - Telluric, out today
Despite some vaguely embarrassing teen heartthrob beginnings as a contestant on Australian Idol, in the past eight years Matt Corby has done his best to shake off the reality-TV stigma and emerge as what Dicko and Marcia would call an "artist". Jokes aside, the Sydney Shire bred boy is an immensely talented singer-songwriter who continually pushes sonic boundaries and has steadfastly tried to carve his own niche in the industry. The long awaited album follows two Triple J-approved hits ('Brother' and 'Resolution') that actually sound little like his new stuff, several EPs and tours; and sees Corby emerge as a kind of millennial Jeff Buckley type - blending an impressive falsetto with a newfound appreciation for lo-fi soul ('Knife Edge' and 'Sooth Lady Wine').
5. Zayn - Mind of Mine, out March 25
Shrouded in secrecy and feverishly reported upon by fangirls and curious onlookers alike former One Direction-er Zayn Malik's debut album is his first attempt to cast off his former boy band associations. His first efforts ('iT's YoU' and the number-one hit 'Pillowtalk') show an affinity for slow-tempo R&B grooves, tales of heartbreak and showing off current girlfriend Gigi Hadid. Working with Frank Ocean's producer Malay means he's probably going to pull a Bieber and make some skilfully magnetic pop album that will prove once and for all that he's a kid no longer.
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