1)Pet Shop Boys Yes
Whilst I’ve always been a big Pet Shop Boys fan, I wasn’t overly enamoured of ‘Fundamental’ or ‘Release’ but ‘Yes’ is one of their best albums. ‘King of Rome’ and ‘The Way it used to be’ are beautiful – perfect PSB slowies and the type of songs I think they should do more of. Some lovely strings. Great album.
2)Simon Bookish Everything/ Everything
I think this actually came out at the end of 2008 but seemed to be ‘launched’ in 2009. I found the previous albums slight impenetrable however this one is a real step change – still quirky and idiosyncratic but this time dense electro bleeps replaced with strings, brass and jazzy piano. Fantastic lyrics and great vocals – real sense of drama. Highlights are Colophon, Portrait of the artist as a fountain, Carbon, and climate change friendly Dumb Terminal. …