Strange telephone call a couple of hours ago, from someone called Bobbie who was looking for some coverage of her band. It turned out, amazingly, to be Bobbie Watson from Comus, of all people, who have reformed for a gig in March.


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The music business is in unseasonal heat today, with the publishing of the BBC's Sound Of 2008 poll. The winner, unsurprisingly, is Adele, who's OK. But I must admit I'm a bit suspicious of the whole self-perpetuating hype of all this - I agree with most of this piece from The Observer from last month. Tellingly, Kitty guessed eight out of ten right in the BBC list, proving how predictable these things have become.


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A surprising amount of good post was waiting for us at the office yesterday, which means a lot of stuff we've played thus far this year has been brand new. There are a handful of disappointments on the list which follows, but the undisputed favourite at the moment is the new Stephen Malkmus album. I'll try and write something more substantial about the Jicks' monumental jams in the next few days. In the meantime, here's the rundown:


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Happy New Year, everyone, and many thanks for all your responses to the Bruce Springsteen and Favourite Albums Of The Year blogs I posted just before Christmas.


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It is, I guess, a quintessential Bruce moment. The house lights are on, and as I walk across the floor of the O2 Arena, everyone is bellowing along unself-consciously to “Born To Run”. For the best part of two and a half hours, the E Street Band have played with a thickness, a relentlessness, a charged virtuosity that is pretty astounding. Now, they’re peaking, and it seems conceivable that they could keep going all night.


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As promised on this Albums Of The Year blog, here are my favourite reissues and compilations of 2007. Again, feel free to add your own selections below.


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As I get older, I find it harder and harder to do these charts - maybe because there are so many records I like, it seems churlish to organise them so crudely. Nevertheless, it's fun having a go - as, hopefully, you're discovering with our Best Of 2007 supplement with the new issue, and the Rate the albums of the year thing on uncut.co.uk. I'll try and post my favourite reissues and comps later, but please let me know your picks, too.


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Some good stuff in the post today, notably the first four Michael Rother solo albums which, in an act of gross self-indulgence, I played back-to-back. And also the new Elbow album: track six, which I think is called "Weather To Fly", is one of those songs that's so fine and delicate it made me stop work and gaze poetically out of the window for its duration.


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A few weeks, maybe months ago, someone left a note after one of my blogs with some insider knowledge about the next Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds LP. It was, they suggested, the most direct pop album that Cave had ever made: after the Stoogesy ramalams of Grinderman and the meditative western soundtracks, here, apparently, was the workaholic Cave at his most focused and dynamic.


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A couple of things that have been hanging around for a few weeks now, and deserve some love here. One is “Rosemarie”, the debut album by an authentically fragrant Cornish band of Pre-Raphaelite damsels and dazed troubadours called Thistletown. Give me any excuse, and I’ll go into a comically apoplectic rant about the uselessness of most contemporary British bands who style themselves as acid-folk.


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Editor's Letter

The return of The Aphex Twin, and Caustic Window


Last year, Warp Records embarked on a campaign for Boards Of Canada's "Tomorrow's Harvest" comeback that was notable for its obtuseness. Unmarked 12-inches were hidden in record stores, strings of numbers and inexplicable broadcasts were strewn enigmatically across the internet. At one point, I...