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The Best Albums of October 2012

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Mike Diver Mike Diver | 13:00 UK time, Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Straight to business – below are 10 really rather excellent new albums that were released in October 2012. They are by no means the only really rather excellent albums released in said period; merely, they are a representation of the quality the month had to offer. Check in with all of BBC Music’s album reviews by clicking to our week-ordered review pages.

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Kendrick Lamar – good kid, m.A.A.d. city


Kendrick Lamar – good kid, m.A.A.d. city
(Polydor; released 22 October)
Recommended by: Gilles Peterson, Zane Lowe, Semtex

“Lamar is a proud California native, but this major label debut harbours more Southern ethos than West Coast gloss. As it plays, it’s clear that Lamar wants to fill the pondering void once occupied by OutKast rapper André 3000, whose philosophical rhymes made him one of hip hop’s most admired MCs. He’s still growing up, but he’s ready to take his place among the hip hop elite.”

Read the full BBC review
On YouTube: Swimming Pools (Drank) (external link)

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Egyptian Hip Hop – GOOD DONT SLEEP


Egyptian Hip Hop – GOOD DON’T SLEEP
(R&S; released 22 October)
Recommended by: Zane Lowe, Marc Riley

“After an extended break, Egyptian Hip Hop have now reassembled for a first album, and it’s every bit as accomplished, smart and unusual as those following their progress could have hoped for. Boasting a slick wash of production, yet still retaining an oddball feel; sounding young and fresh yet acknowledging an obvious debt to its predecessors: this debut is a clever, fascinating and intricate triumph.”

Read the full BBC review
On YouTube: SYH (external link)

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Halls - Ark


Halls – Ark
(No Pain In Pop; released 22 October)
Recommended by: Huw Stephens

“The debut album from south-Londoner Sam Howard, Ark features compositions which flex and pulse, that explode from stillness into glorious cacophony. These songs are marked by movement, where other purveyors of down-tempo, electro-coloured kind-of-nu-classical creations idly meander in circles for a 45-minute run-time. And it’s White Chalk, this set’s first single, which lifts the whole to unexpected heights.”

Read the full BBC review
On YouTube: White Chalk (external link)

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Bellowhead - Broadside


Bellowhead – Broadside
(Navigator; released 15 October)
Recommended by: Mike Harding

“It's all there in that name. Those three syllables suggest a hollering madman, and a ferocity that will – for the newcomer – seem far removed from folk music. But Bellowhead are one of the genre's 21st century success stories. We're more in the realm of The Pogues and Dexys, hanging out with a thinking-and-doing party band, who twist traditional tunes through rabble-rousing arrangements.”

Read the full BBC review
On YouTube: 10,000 Miles (external link)

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Metz - Metz


Metz – Metz
(Sub Pop; released 15 October)
Recommended by: Huw Stephens

“Blood simple and bloody minded, Metz’s half-hour self-titled debut is a welcome lurch straight for the jugular. The Canadians recall the cast of characters who graced the sub-legendary Amphetamine Reptile label, or Nottingham’s grotesquely unfashionable 90s riff-monsters Fudge Tunnel. Yet such is the urgency of aggro-blasts like Knife in the Water and Negative Space, that Metz is no retro throwback, no museum piece.”

Read the full BBC review
On YouTube: Wet Blanket (external link; contains strobe effects)

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Jeff Lynne - Long Wave


Jeff Lynne – Long Wave
(Frontiers Records; released 8 October)
Recommended by: Radio 2 Album of the Week, Alex Lester, Janice Long

“A subjective labour of love akin to Bowie’s Pin-Ups or Ferry’s These Foolish Things, which also carries elements of stripped-down self-exposure, Long Wave is infused with warm melancholy. If it never crackles with startling candour, you sense that’s because Lynne wants to pay simple homage to the tunes that formed him, rather than whip out his youthful diaries.”

Read the full BBC review
On YouTube: Have Mercy (external link)

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Josephine – Portrait
(Ark Recordings; released 8 October)
Recommended by: Nemone, Alex Lester, Janice Long

“Often, the term ‘timeless’ only really functions in hindsight. But occasionally, something comes to the fore that transcends any concept of now, then, or otherwise. One such example is the debut album for 29-year-old Manchester native Josephine. She manages the rare feat of creating something both novel and nostalgic, yet with an identity entirely its own.”

Read the full BBC review
On YouTube: What a Day (external link)

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Tall Ships


Tall Ships – Everything Touching
(Big Scary Monsters; released 8 October)
Recommended by: Huw Stephens

“Brighton-via-Cornwall troupe Tall Ships boast math-rock melodies seemingly hatched in shady laboratories and arrangements so complex that scientists could spend days puzzling over them. Yet the dizzying craftsmanship evident on this debut LP is never an obstacle. When an album like Everything Touching comes along, it’s enough to just take a step back and marvel at the brainpower.”

Read the full BBC review
On YouTube: T=0 (external link)

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Tame Impala - Lonerism


Tame Impala – Lonerism
(Modular Recordings; released October 8)
Recommended by: Marc Riley, 6 Music Album of the Day, Nemone

“For all the Oz roots and American connection, this second album’s soul is so very British. Set the controls for the heart of the sun, matey, we’re going on a magical mystery tour. Tame Impala’s penchant for feeding everything through pedal-tastic reverb-flanging-Echoplexed-backwards-fuzzboz FX makes a shoegaze band resemble an acoustic folk duo by comparison.”

Read the full BBC review
On YouTube: Elephant (external link)

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Flying Lotus


Flying Lotus – Until the Quiet Comes
(Warp; released 1 October)
Recommended by: Gilles Peterson, Benji B, 6 Music Album of the Day

“While FlyLo’s previous work is bright and bouncy, this set is ambient and nocturnal. It’s a wistful journey through a mystical dream world that only he could construct. It’s an otherworldly excursion through our deepest states of unconsciousness. For a person so sonically inclusive, Until the Quiet Comes further catapults its maker into the cosmos and away from all things terrestrial. He’s the king of his domain, and there is no runner-up.”

Read the full BBC review
On YouTube: Until the Quiet Comes (A Short Film) (external link; contains scenes which some may find upsetting)


  • Comment number 1.

    Would someone kindly explain to me why according to the 'official' rock album chart Stone Sour House of God & Bone Part 1 is at no.1 and Muse The 2ND Law is at no.2. but in the combined top 40 album charts Stone Sour is NO.13 and Muse 2nd Law is at NO.8? How is that possible? Also just out of interest I notice that Whites Stripes 7 Nation Army single in the official top 30 indie singles is at No. 1,7,11,16,18,19 and no. 21 & DJ Fresh is at 12,13,15,25 & 29? Could someone tell me why? I'm over 40 so please type slowly so I can keep up.

  • Comment number 2.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.


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