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


This week's edition of Recommends features brand new music from David Bowie, Bonobo and The Wave Pictures, albums courtesy of The 2 Bears and Thurston Moore and brilliant videos via Royal Blood, Hauschka and Tim & Barry. Elsewhere you can find out about upcoming shows from Young Fathers, Marika Hackman and the return of Bloc.

Tracks: David Bowie, letthemusicplay, Bonobo, The Wave Pictures


Videos: Royal Blood, Adult Jazz, Haushcka, I'm Tryna Tell Ya


Albums: The 2 Bears, The Coral, Thurston Moore, The Budos Band


Live: Young Fathers, Bloc. 2015, Marika Hackman, Partisans

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    Barclaycard Mercury Prize Champion Films

    Each week we're uploading new episodes of our Champion Films series, in which trusted tastemakers, respected musicians and music obsessed broadcasters show support for a favourite act or artist shortlisted for the 2014 Barclaycard Mercury Prize Albums of the Year. This week MistaJam backs Kate Tempest, Jamie Cullum campaigns for Polar Bear and Nick Mulvey finds a fan in Gemma Cairney. Subscribe to our YouTube channel for more.

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    Damon Albarn Performs to Androids

    Art has often said to imitate life, and vice versa, but it was artificial life that experienced art at an intimate show Damon Albarn gave at Japan's Miraikan, the national museum of engineering, science and innovation. Amongst those in the largely human audience were a female android named Otonaroid and an abstract human robot called Telenoid. The two special guests were on hand to enjoy a particularly pertinent acoustic rendition of Everyday Robots.

  • David Bowie

    Sue (Or In A Season Of Crime)


    Nothing Has Changed, the forthcoming compilation from David Bowie, features a career spanning selection of music from Liza Jane - the first instance in which a 17 year old Davie Jones committed himself to tape with backing band The King Bees - to his latest single, Sue (Or In A Season Of Crime). The blistering big band opus, which Bowie wrote with American composer Maria Schneider during the summer, was recorded specifically for the new collection and provides one of the darkest, jazziest moments.

  • letthemusicplay

    Summer ft. Kate Tempest

    Junkdog Records

    letthemusicplay have worked with some pretty high profile collaborators over the past eighteen months, with The Horrors' Faris Badwan, House legend Marshall Jefferson and now South London laureate Kate Tempest all guesting on tracks. It's a roll call that could be considered impressive for an otherwise unknown production team, although a paper trail of clues leading to Faithless founders Rollo and Sister Bliss might throw some light on the issue. Their new EP Summer/Winter also features a flip from Until The Ribbon Breaks.

  • Bonobo


    Ninja Tune

    After almost two years spent tirelessly touring last album The North Borders, Simon Green has finally freed up some time to spend in the studio and recorded a new EP. The punchy three tracker finds the producer practising some new moves on fondly familiar turf; specifically that point where sharply realised rhythms, ethereal electronics and gloriously warm instrumentation all converge. Certainly one of his most effective dance floor weapons to date, title track Flashlight arrives ahead of a sold out show at Alexandra Palace.

  • The Wave Pictures

    Pea Green Coat

    Moshi Moshi

    Two of Indie's best cherished outliers converge with exhilarating effect on Great Big Burning Flamingo Moon, the latest album from The Wave Pictures. The band decamped to Kent to record with painter, poet and all-round Punk polymath Billy Childish, a longtime hero of the trio and, judging by Pea Green Coat, the perfect foil for vocalist Dave Tattersall. Whilst always brilliantly distinctive and down to earth, Tattersall's lyrics are given an added bump by the frenzied energy so prominent in all of Childish's myriad projects.

  • Royal Blood

    Ten Tonne Skeleton

    Directed by Never Ending Fun

    The last music video from Royal Blood was the horror heavy clip for Figure It Out, a gory ode to zombie flicks that left vast numbers of viewers on the edge of their seats. The boys' newest clip continues to create a hugely uneasy tension, though this time round it's the inference making things all the more ominous. The video's release coincides with news of a new tour next year that will stop off at Blackpool's Empress Ballroom and Brixton's O2 Academy.

  • Adult Jazz

    Am Gone

    Directed by Samuel Travis

    Adult Jazz always seem to strike an easy balance between intelligence and accessibility, something they proved to great effect on provoking debut Gist Is. Director Samuel Travis displays a similar skill in his video for the band's Am Gone, countering heavyweight concepts with a deceptively simple narrative. The clip stars Suren Senevirante (a.k.a producer My Panda Shall Fly), who awakes to find himself in stocks, alone in a rural wilderness.

  • Hauschka


    Directed by Tobias Stretch

    Since winning Radiohead's video competition in 2008 Tobias Stretch has established himself as a genuinely original voice in the world of music videos. This latest offering finds the Appalachian animator teaming up with German composer Haushcka, whose beautiful eleventh album Abandoned City was inspired by those settlements abandoned by man and left to nature; Stretch takes this theme and runs with it in the mesmerising short for Craco.

  • I'm Tryna Tell Ya - Trailer

    Directed by Tim & Barry

    As the leading lights of Don't Watch That TV, directional duo Tim & Barry have never strayed too far from the street level scenes that excite them most. So it was when they left their London stronghold in 2012 to travel to Chicago and document the Footwork explosion, which after taking the city by storm had begun to dominate the UK's most active underground dance floors. The now finished feature follows Traxman, DJ Spinn and the late DJ Rashad.

  • The 2 Bears

    The Night Is Young

    Southern Fried

    On their first album The 2 Bears - Hot Chip's Joe Goddard and party perennial Raf Rundell - opened up the often repetitive refrains of House music to a broader range of influences, in the process bringing a welcome dose of optimism to the dance floor. Both being seasoned DJs, Goddard and Rundell are dab hands at lifting the crowd, though on second offering The Night is Young it's those moments when they address the everyday ennui that exists outside of the club that the music proves to be most emotionally effecting.

  • The Coral

    The Curse of Love

    Skeleton Key

    Between The Invisible Invasion, the 2005 set they recorded with Adrian Utley and Geoff Barrow, and coming-of-age collection Roots & Echoes, The Coral began recording a freaky album of Prog-leaning Psych Folk on a dusty cassette player. Changes in personnel and an urge to push on with new material condemned The Curse of Love to the ranks of unreleased obscurity, though now eight years on the band have decided to revive the record; a good job too as the music stands as some of their most bewitching.

  • Thurston Moore

    The Best Day


    Elegiac acoustic outings and experimental expeditions may have made up the most part of Thurston Moore's musical activity since the unexpected unravelling of Sonic Youth a couple of years ago, but now with The Best Day the revitalised veteran agitator returns to the raucous noise he's best known for. Sprawling instrumentals anchor the album, which Moore recorded with former SY bandmate Steve Shelley and My Bloody Valentine's Deb Googe, but its when he takes to the mic that the magic is at its most visceral.

  • The Budos Band

    Burnt Offering

    Daptone Records

    From it's cover alone it's clear to see the fourth set from Daptone stalwarts The Budos Band separates itself from the heavy Afro influenced Funk that's so long been their calling card. On Burnt Offering a whole other world of influences come to the fore, with swirling Psychedelic Rock and supernatural Soul bubbling away in a bible black cauldron. The shift is well executed, and entirely welcome, though the core of the ensemble's sound still lies with their watertight playing and a creative relationship fifteen years in the making.

  • Various Artists

    Master Mix: Red Hot + Arthur Russell

    Red Hot + Blue

    No other artist engaged with New York's underground of the Seventies and Eighties like Arthur Russell, the restless renaissance man whose presence was as integral at the Paradise Garage as it was at experimental Arts outpost The Kitchen. Since his untimely death in the early Nineties Russell's legacy has become even more important, and it's celebrated with this double disc of cover versions arranged by Red Hot + Blue. Scissor Sisters, Devendra Banhart, Cults and Jose Gonzales are amongst those to pay tribute.

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    Young Fathers

    XOYO, London

    Wednesday 10th December

    Live UK appearances from Young Fathers have been few and far between in 2014, the trio spending the most part of the year introducing America to their melting pot of high concept Hip Hop and artful electronics. They make amends with a one-off show at XOYO in December though, hitting up the benchmark East London venue with support from Law Holt, an emerging singer with a sound as vibrant and vivid as her fellow Edinburgh residents.

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    Bloc. 2015

    Butlins, Minehead

    Friday 13th - Sunday 15th March

    A mistimed move to London's ill fated Pleasure Gardens in 2012 very nearly put a finish Bloc. after six years of perfectly pitched parties, but a being determined to keep the flag flying organisers rallied round and opened their Hackney Wick warehouse space last year and got back to what they did best, promoting the best in forward facing Dance music. Their rejuvenation looks complete now as they reveal the return to Butlins for a party next spring.

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    Marika Hackman

    East Village Arts Club, Liverpool

    Thursday 6th November

    From her earliest self-releases onwards there's been something arresting in the way Marika Hackman marries the plaintive delivery and introspective gaze of Folk with resolutely contemporary production, the futuristic flares courtesy of Alt J's longterm studio associate Charlie Andrew. The young singer revealed details of her eagerly awaited debut album this week - along with the brilliant new track Drown - and announced a string of dates for November.

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    The Vortex, London

    Friday 21st November

    Very nearly twenty years into their tenure Partisans celebrate the release of latest collection Swamp with a special show at The Vortex. The band, co-led by guitarist Phil Robson and saxophonist Julian Siegel, have long been regarded amongst those first founders who paved the way for the Capital's fervent Post Jazz scene and on their latest long player they sound as dynamic as ever, favouring a primitive feel over hard-earned technique.