This Month’s Vinyl Picks: March 2017
Welcome to our monthly vinyl round-up for the month of March, in which we pick out a handful new releases and reissues arriving over the next few weeks. Ed Sheeran, Goldfrapp and Jamiroquai all return with brand new albums in March, plus there are some deluxe reissues from Fleetwood Mac and Paul McCartney.
Check out this month's vinyl highlights below...
Ed Sheeran: ÷
Continuing his habit of naming albums after his favourite mathematical symbols, Ed Sheeran returns this month with his third LP ÷, available on vinyl as well as all the other formats from March 3rd. The new album includes his new singles ‘Castle on the Hill’ and ‘Shape Of You’, while elsewhere the album’s 12 new tracks include contributions from Amy Wadge, Johnny McDaid, Jessie Ware and One Republic mainman Ryan Tedder.
Virgin EMI Records
It has been seven years since Jamiroquai’s last album, 2010’s Rock Dust Light Star, but Jay Kay and co. return this month with a brand new LP and, of course, a selection of weird and wonderful headgear. Sonically speaking, the new album is a long way from the mellow Acid Jazz vibes of their early records like Emergency on Planet Earth and Space Cowboy; instead, the man in the hat returns with a record aimed squarely at the dancefloor, incorporating funky, Chic-esque guitars and the kind of warm, bubbling synth sounds you might expect to find on an album by Royksopp. It still has that unmistakable Jamiroquai feel though and it’s an album that’ll sound great on your turntable.
Goldfrapp: Silver Eye
Alison Goldfrapp has been one of the UK’s most unique exports in the field of electro-pop and four years on from her last full-length offering, 2013’s Tales of Us, Goldfrapp returns this month with Silver Eye, a brand new LP which includes the barnstorming new single ‘Anymore’, and there are plenty more synthesiser-powered treats where that came from. Due to arrive on March 31st, Goldfrapp’s seventh album contains 10 new tracks in all and is available on black heavyweight vinyl.
If you’ve yet to experience any of the music that bass player extraordinaire Stephen Bruner has been putting out over the last few years under his Thundercat moniker, now might be the time to stop sleeping on this unique talent and check out some of his wares. Bruner has appeared on numerous great albums in recent times, lending his bass skills to Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp A Butterfly and both of Erykah Badu’s The New Amrerykah albums, to name just a handful, but Drunk is the only the third LP he has released under his own steam and, just like its predecessors, it features a beguiling blend of funk, jazz, hip-hop and lots more besides. The CD and download versions have been available since late February, but the vinyl edition is due to land in stores on March 10th.
British Sea Power: Let The Dancers Inherit The Party
The Brighton-based sextet are back with their 10th album, due to arrive on the last day of the month, and this one comes in two vinyl formats, a standard black vinyl version and a deluxe 2LP edition. The new album features 12 brand new songs, including singles ‘Bad Bohemian’ and ‘Keep on Trying (Sechs Freunde)’, both of which look set to be crowd-pleasing additions to the band’s formidable live shows.
Laura Marling: Semper Femina
More Alarming Records
Named after a quote from the ancient Roman poet Virgil that Laura Marling has tattooed on her thigh, the Hampshire-born troubadour’s sixth album blends her usual folky vibes with jazz and country flavours, offering a very different feel than on her previous LP, 2015’s Short Movie. Here the vibe is much more laid back and the singles released so far from the new album – ‘Soothing’. ‘Wild Fire’ and ‘Next Time’ – offer a good indication of what you can expect from a record that may well be her most accomplished yet.
République Amazone: Les Amazones D'Afrique
Real World Records
Our final pick of the new releases this month is this collaborative offering from seven of West Africa’s most groundbreaking female artists – a ‘supergroup’ of sorts that comprises Mariam Koné, Nneka, Mouneissa Tandina, Rokia Koné, Mariam Doumbia, Pamela Badjogo, Kandia Kouyaté and Mamani Keïta.
Coming together on a theme of promoting gender equality – a subject on which they have all campaigned - the all-female collective have created unique album offering an excellent introduction to the contemporary sounds coming out of the African continent, featuring a range of styles from traditional Malian music and afrobeat to electronica and dance music. It might be a little early to be picking out the best summer records of the year, but this is guaranteed to inject a little sunshine into your record collection and the vinyl version, with its stunning artwork, is a thing of beauty.
Fleetwood Mac: Tango in the Night
Next to their all-conquering album Rumours, Fleetwood Mac’s 1986 album Tango in the Night remains one of their finest pieces of work and this month their classic LP is getting a deluxe box set reissue, including a remastered version of the album on heavyweight vinyl and a collection of CDs that include b-sides, demos and other goodies. Featuring hits like ‘Little Lies’, ‘Everywhere’ and ‘Big Love’, this is a must-have for any Fleetwood Mac fan and you’ll be able to get your hands on the new box set from March 31st.
Paul McCartney: Flowers in the Dirt
The other big reissue this month comes from none other than Sir Paul McCartney, with the former Beatle set to re-release his 1989 album Flowers in the Dirt on March 24th, including new vinyl edition on 180g black wax. The 2LP gatefold set features remastered versions of the album’s original 12 tracks, as well as some previously unreleased demos written and recorded with Elvis Costello, making this a very useful addition to your collection if you happen to be a fan of both.
There are 22 tracks in all on the vinyl version and if that’s still not enough for you, there’s also a deluxe CD/DVD version featuring all the music videos created for the album, as well three new short films and the documentary ‘Put It There’, previously only released on VHS.
John Barry & His Orchestra / Various Performers: On Her Majesty’s Secret Service
Virgin EMI Records
Unless you’re a truly avid Bond fan who keeps their eyes peeled at all times for any new 007 developments, our final pick for you this month might well have flown under your radar. Late in 2015, Virgin EMI Records released some new vinyl editions of the soundtracks from the early bond films, including all the Sean Connery films and this, the one and only film to star George Lazenby in the role of James Bond.
The film may not be the most popular in the Bond canon, but for our money its soundtrack is one of the finest from those early years and the main theme, famously sampled and remixed by Propellorheads, is a particular highlight.