The essential albums of the last few months
Leonard Cohen You Want It Darker COLUMBIA
The 82- year-old poet-songwriter’s 14th studio album feels like a summation of his thoughts on love, life and faith at a point when there is no longer time to worry about the small stuff. Deeply ambiguous yet wittily epigrammatic, it’s all one might want from a final testament.
Courteeners Mapping The Rendezvous IGNITION
Liam Fray has always been keen on an anthem, but his band have never sounded so gigantic as they do here. Their fifth album – full of cinematic vignettes starring a cast of insecure rascals – is their great leap forwards, and is destined to rattle the fittings of arenas across the UK.
Julia Jacklin Don’t Let The Kids Win TRANSGRESSIVE
The 25- year-old Australian former factory worker recalls the country vulnerability of Patsy Cline on this wonderful debut album. Sharp in wit and rich in heartbreak, it reverberates with a sense of truth that only the truly exceptional can convey.
Pretenders Alone BMG
The message is clear on Chrissie Hynde’s first Pretenders LP in eight years: even at 65, she is still a loner rebel at heart. It sounds like Hynde fronting The Black Keys (Dan Auerbach produces) – but it’s a glorious sound and ample proof that, 38 years into her career, she still answers to no one.