Has Kanye West proved Da Vinci wrong?

Has Kanye 2s

Leonardo Da Vinci once quipped “Art is never finished, only abandoned” but has Kanye West’s latest LP and the internet age helped defy that?

The digital cogs of an album release can be generated from a laptop in your PJs rather than going through the traditional means of shipping, manufacturing and distribution. With this, of course the game has changed. Surprise releases have become the norm proceeding to artists of a certain caliber. So no doubt Kanye West’s received that same ‘out of the blue’ treatment. However, the pushing, the pulling, the teasing, the constant fixing in its wake has just got irritating.

For somebody who labelled the new effort as “the best album of all time”, before going on to change it several times doesn’t suggest there’s the certainty within him which a statement such as this requires to deliver convincingly. With Kanye it’s a constant contradiction. It’s a wonder how he ever settled on baby names – which could of done with a little more editing.

Foreboding 2016: Jazz

As we get used to writing that new 4-digit number (a number which dictates a flash mob of folk eating healthily and jogging for 3 weeks before returning to their usual fatty-selves) Moonshake is going to be foreboding the musical year ahead every week this month starting with …JAZZ.

Why? Jazz has been making its way closer to the edges of mainstream music throughout 2015, the genre is seeing a resurrection which is forward-thinking, rather than Gatsby-styled nostaligia. Take one of the biggest albums of 2015 – Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp A Butterfly. The 1 hour 20 minute running time saw Lamar slalom his sharp rap-melodies through fiery sax and flute flourishes, most predominantly on the interlude ‘For Free?’.

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(Thundercat)

So why does this mean 2016 is going to get all plush red velvet and smokey back rooms?

The 8 most likely to…compose the new James Bond theme

The release of a new Bond theme sees the film and music world unite in equal anticipation, with Spectre set to be released this October – it’s time to start asking questions. Last time Adele took on Skyfall with Paul Epworth which bagged them an Oscar, the Bond theme blueprint is in desperate need of a shake up, and whilst Sam Smith seems the man most likely to, it would be refreshing to see someone a bit off the beaten track stepping up to the job. Jack White proved with Quantum of Solace’s ‘Another Way To Die’ that rock and other genres are more than capable. But who could it be? Check out the most likely to below…

Arctic Monkeys

“I’d love to do a tune for Bond, definitely,” Alex Turner hint-hinted on the red carpet for his sublime acoustic EP for Submarine. Turner’s guises often wanders into the cinematic, particuarly on The Last Shadow Puppets side-project with Miles Kane and on recent Monkeys LP AM. The return of Arctic Monkeys aligns with the release of the film, with the usual 2-year gap between albums so far, however…

Top 10 Album Segues

There is something greatly satisfying about hearing a track blend seamlessly into the next on an album. It can sonically transport you from one mood to another like an orchestral symphony would, it gives an album continuity. Pink Floyd were the first to begin implementing the segue to tie together entire albums (see ‘The Wall’ and ‘Dark Side of the Moon’) However this pleasing feature is in grave danger, the once linear motion of a vinyl demanded that you listen to a record from start to finish in the way the artist intended, which is becoming increasingly difficult: shuffle buttons (helping to deteriorate attention spans since 2005) have folk shaking their iPods like TicTacs, and advertisements inviting you to become an asthma hamster for ‘flu-camp’ are littered in amongst your albums on streaming services; usually at the track-segueing moment…

…Anyway, rant over, check out my top 10 album track segues below. Which tracks and albums switch your shuffle off? What are your favourites? Let me know on Twitter with the hashtag #SaveTheAlbumSegue

10 Mumford & Sons Babel – ‘Babel’ into ‘Whispers in the Dark’

9   Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds Chasing Yesterday – ‘You Know We Can’t Go Back’ into ‘Ballad Of The              Mighty I’

5 Tracks To Get You Buzzing For Summertime Releases

The Maccabees – Marks To Prove It

The long awaited return of The Maccabees started on Tuesday (31st March) when Steve Lamacq spun the first single from their forthcoming album on BBC 6 Music. ‘Marks To Prove It’ brings forth the punky energy of their first album, introduces it to the sparseness of ‘Given To The Wild’ and kicks down a whole new door for album four. This has been a long time coming, and they’ve proved already that it’s been well worth the wait. This summer will see the five-piece cement themselves as one of Britain’s finest acts. 2015 is going to be a big one for The Maccabees. Check out more new songs over here.

Album Title: TBC

Due out: July/August

Jamie XX – Loud Places (feat. Romy)

Jamie XX has come a long way since The XX’s beginnings in 2009. After being part of the Mercury Prize winning debut album, he’s gone on to work with the biggest artists in the game – Drake sampled his work for smash single ‘Take Care,’ he’s written with Alicia Keys, but it’s his solo effort which is going to be entirely his own fanfare. Fellow