Barclaycard Mercury Prize Recommends brings you some of the week's most interesting online music from around the world...


This week's dropping temperatures seem to have done little to slow the flow of great new music, as Daughter, James Blake and Portico have all uploaded brand new tracks. There are albums streaming online from She & Him, Submotion Orchestra and Beans On Toast, whilst Noel Gallagher heads up a brilliant selection of videos which also includes new music from Jamie xx and Four Tet. Eslewhere in Recommends there's news on a some very special intimate shows from both Neneh Cherry and The Maccabees.

Tracks: Daughter (Warpaint Remix), James Blake, Malcolm Middleton

& David Shrigley, Portico, Floating Points


Videos: Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds, Continuum,

The Making Of LOOP>>60hz, William Anderson


Albums: She & Him, Submotion Orchestra, Gravenhurst, Beans On Toast


Live: Neneh Cherry, The Maccabees, Qu Junktions present Kapnikon Nights

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    The UK's Smallest Record Shop

    This week it was revealed that annual vinyl sales reached their highest figure in over two decades, with more than 1 million records having been sold already in 2014. With such a rise in popularity it's no wonder that vinyl parlours are popping up everywhere, not least in Peterborough where Mat Hawton has transformed his shed into what's believed to be the UK's smallest record shop. Despite its size the shop still boasts a stock of 6000 records.

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    Behind the Scenes of Bowie & Bing's Duet

    In 1977 David Bowie was living in Berlin, recording music that still to this day stand as some of the most creatively ambitious of his career. Despite this he saw the year out with perhaps the most orthodox appearance he's ever made, singing Little Drummer Boy alongside crooner Bing Crosby. The duet is now synonymous with the festive season, though a new documentary reveals that if it were it not for Bowie's mum it might never have happened.

  • Daughter


    Warpaint Remix

    Two groups with a shared appetite for artful Indie coalesce on this new remix, the first of two exchanges that will form a split release scheduled for next year's Record Store Day. Having embraced Electronica on their celebrated self-titled sophomore, Warpaint continue to experiment with synthesised sounds on this reworking of Winter. The LA quartet transform the track, an emotive exploration of space and shade which originally opened Daughter's debut If You Leave, into a propulsive piece of dystopian Dance music.

  • James Blake

    200 Press

    1-800 Dinosaur

    A new James Blake album could be complete within months, and according to an interview that ran in the Miami New Times this week it will most likely feature a contribution from Kanye West. Always one to stay grounded Blake counters the news of this high profile collaboration with a forthcoming release aimed strictly at the underground. 200 Press will, as the title suggests, see a highly limited vinyl release and finds the producer immersing himself in the subterranean sounds championed at his 1-800 Dinosaur club nights.

  • Malcolm Middleton & David Shrigley

    A Computer

    Melodic Records

    The intriguing alliance of artist David Shrigley and musician Malcolm Middleton first took root in 2007 though it's only now the pair are ready to reveal Music & Words, an album that wears their shared love of dark humour and all things existential on its strangely drawn sleeve. A Computer, the album's closing cut, serves as suitably odd introduction to the project, with Middelton's warped instrumentation underpinning a monotone monologue from a servile computer that's somehow become completely self aware.

  • Portico

    Bright Luck feat. Jono McCleery

    Ninja Tune

    Now operating as a trio Portico have made the transition from their days as a quartet complete, their new sound an undoubtable world away from their earliest work. Whist the predominant electronics have replaced the more organic feel of old the same keen sense of scale and dynamic depth are as integral to this new music as they were on debut Knee Deep In The North Sea or its successor Isla. The group will debut all of their new material at a very special London show next week with sonic adventurer Luke Abbot in support.

  • Floating Points

    Nuits Sonores

    Eglo Recordings

    Releases from Sam Shepherd may be sparse, but when they do arrive their inherent quality always more than makes up for the wait. This week the producer uploaded some brand new music, one of two tracks set to appear on a limited edition 12" expected next month via Eglo. Nuits Sonores is an epic piece that over the course of twelve minutes mutates between moments of soulful, Rhodes-led reflection and eruptions of Acid-edged synthesisers, their contrasting textures made cohesive by the restless, Detroit indebted drums.

  • Noel Gallagher's High Flying Birds

    Do The Damage

    Directed by Mike Bruce

    There's a grit to this latest single from Noel Gallagher that can't be ignored, its incessant piano line and chugging guitars all adding to one of his heaviest outings in recent years. The rough edges and rugged momentum are heightened by the hyperactive video, in which two warring teams face off at a roller derby whilst Noel watches on from a from the safety of a sofa. The song is the second to be lifted from pending long player Chasing Yesterday.

  • Continuum

    Directed by Sofia Mattioli

    After directing the heart warming video for Jamie xx's Sleep Sound artist-filmmaker Sofia Mattioli asked the producer, along with close allies Four Tet, Koreless and John Talabot, to write music for her Continuum project. Though they worked individually on each of the scores, the creative closeness of the four men and the manner in which they responded to the work has resulted in a hugely original piece that's as aurally satisfying as it is visually challenging.

  • The Making of LOOP>>60hz:

    Transmissions From The Drone Orchestra

    This autumn the Barbican premiered a new work by visionary musician John Cale, who along with speculative architect Liam Young took a burgeoning technology laden with connotations and repurposed it for the performance space. The Drone Orchestra served to unlock the musical potential of the controversial ariel vehicles for the first time, and The Creators Project were on hand to document creative process from the first rehearsal to the show itself.

  • William Adamson


    Directed by Nicola Mills

    The themes of journey and place that informed the album Under An East Coast Moon are similarly present in this short film from William Adamson, the new nom de plume of onetime Galliano frontman Rob Gallagher. A keen topographer, Gallagher travels from London to Suffolk and whilst doing so makes the gradual transition from anonymous commuter to an abstract performance artist entirely at one with wilderness that surrounds him.

  • She & Him



    M Ward and Zooey Deschanel have never hidden their love for cover versions, with versions of longtime favourites appearing on all of their albums to date. As the title of their major label debut intones this latest collection is given over completely to standards, with classics from Chet Baker, Frank Sinatra, Burt Bacharach and Dusty Springfield amongst those hand picked by the pair. The lightness of touch that's typified all their music remains, with a twenty piece orchestra on hand to add even more sparkle to the proceedings.

  • Submotion Orchestra


    Counter Records

    A good deal of Submotion Orchestra's legions of fans will have first been introduced to the band via their incredible live show, the insatiable energy and broad spectrum of styles at play always proving an intoxicating proposition for the uninitiated. With this in mind their third album marks feels like a new chapter for the seven piece as its less indebted to the power of live performance and more focussed on creating spaces in which their inherent musicianship is able to shine, not least vivacious vocalist Ruby Wood.

  • Gravenhurst

    Offerings: Lost Songs 2000-2004


    Whilst working on plans for the tenth anniversary re-issue of Gravenhurst's Flashlight Seasons Warp uncovered an archive of demos and unreleased songs Nick Talbot had penned around the time of the album's original release. First intending to give them away as a download the sheer quality of the writing and intimacy of the recordings demanded a proper release, which now arrives in the form of Offerings. Capturing Talbot at his most personal the collection offers essential insight for fans of this most distinctive songsmith. 

  • Beans On Toast

    The Grand Scheme Of Things

    Xtra Mile Recordings

    Jay Beans On Toast first emerged during a purple patch for young Folk singers in the Capital, his arrival on the scene coinciding with that of Laura Marling, Mumford & Sons and a dozen others who formed a much loved community of loosely linked musicians. In the years since Jay's become one of the best loved troubadours on the live circuit, playing endless shows - including regular slots opening for one of his biggest fans, Frank Turner - and releasing an album annually, the latest being The Grand Scheme Of Things.

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    Neneh Cherry

    The Prince Albert, Brighton

    Saturday 24th January

    After an initial reemergence aided and abetted by Scandinavian Free Jazz favourites The Thing, Neneh Cherry has continued to excite audiences, most recently with the fantastic Blank Project album. She has big shows in Manchester, London and New York scheduled for next year but starts warming up with two incredibly intimate shows in the tiny upstairs room of legendary Brighton boozer The Prince Albert. Don't expect tickets to last long!

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    The Maccabees

    Norwich Arts Centre, Norwich

    Sunday 14th December

    For 35 years Norwich Arts Centre has brought the best in emergent talent to East Anglia, with everyone from Nirvana to Biffy Clyro all playing the converted church during the early stages of their career. This forthcoming Maccabees show is something of an exception as the band are now more likely to be found playing in stadiums, but they return to the intimate environs to help the Arts Centre celebrate being named Britain's Best Small Venue.


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    Qu Junktions present Kapnikon Nights

    Cube Cinema, Bristol

    Thursday 11th - Friday 12th December

    Two nights of "warming midwinter music" take place next month as Qu Junktions present a bill that partners endearing legends of the British Folk scene with some of their most interesting young contemporaries. On Friday iconic journeyman Michael Chapman performs with prodigious guitarist James Blackshaw, whilst the Saturday show welcomes The Incredible String Band's Mike Heron accompanied by Folk rockers Trembling Bells.