Half Moon Run- Sun Leads Me OnImage - HMR

Release Date: 23rd October

Montreal based indie-rock band Half Moon Run appear to have burst out of nowhere in the past 3 years. Hot on the heels of some of the leaders in the genre such as Of Monsters and Men and Mumford and Sons who they’ve opened for and performing at major festivals such as Glastonbury and SXSW the band is producing some brilliant songs of a refined, low-key sound. As a result, expectations are high for the next album and judging from pre-releases the lads don’t disappoint. ‘Trust’ the first track from the new album is catchy, fresh and expertly produced. Half Moon Run is one of those bands that you find it hard to fault, their level of variety from track to track is impressive and each song holds its own and they can back this up by their string of sold-out international dates including their Album Launch in Whelan’s on the 23rd of October. Stick this album on and you’ll be hooked on this brilliant band for weeks.

Ellie Goulding- DeliriumImage - EG

Release Date: 6th November

No artist is careening down the slippery slope that is pop music faster than Ellie. She is showing no signs of stopping after recently stating in an interview with NME that her aim was to make a ‘big-pop album’. Sneak previews of the single ‘On my mind’ certainly affirm this. Ellie’s unique voice is heavily manipulated and dubbed with effects to give that standard pop sound. The repetition of the lyrics; “got you on my mind” over a synth-background doesn’t do much to excite the ears. In my opinion she is heading the wrong direction with her music-making, I would love to see her return to her earlier style where she explores the extent of her incredible vocal range and where her talented voice takes the forefront such as in her tracks ‘Under the Sheets’ and ‘Guns and Horses’. I must say that I am disappointed that Ellie would sacrifice good lyrics and song-writing for the chance to make a rather generic sounding big pop album, but I’m sure it will be a big hit in the charts.

Bjork- Vulnicura Strings

Image - B

Release Date: 6th November

The ethereal sound of Bjork is back. In January we were treated to her much anticipated and critically acclaimed album ‘Vulnicura’, and now comes the stunning acoustic accompaniment ‘Vulnicura’ Strings. It is being hailed as a more intimate, pure take on the original, merging Bjork’s angelic vocals with captivating string arrangements, ditching everything else. It is a purer, cleaner sound than before, with Bjork’s voice being the main focal point; however it retains all of the crucial elements that made ‘Vulnicura’ such a success. The string section serves to accentuate the orchestral, celestial nature of her voice especially in tracks like ‘Lionsong’. This being a Bjork album, it has its quirks, most notably her use of the Leonardo De Vinci designed viola organist, built for the small sum of $10,000 by Polish musician S?awomir Zubrzycki. It’s no swan dress, but it’s just enough eccentricity to remind us of the experimental nature of Bjork’s music and her continued success in setting herself apart from all other musicians. She’s a little out there, but that doesn’t distract from her undeniable talent. There is truly no one like Bjork.

  • By Aoileann Kennedy, Music Contributor