Sir Paul Mccartney - New It's been six years since Paul McCartney's last original studio album Memory Almost Full. There are a lot of new things going on in his 16th solo studio album, aptly titled New, with four different producers to keep things varied. There's Mark Ronson, who played at Macca's wedding to Nancy Shevell and George Martin's son Giles. Adele's producer Paul Epworth lends his talents, while Early Days, produced by Glyn Johns' son, is arguably the sweetest song on the album.
Rating: 7/10 Cher - Closer To The Truth In three years, Cher will be 70, but as she sings in one track on this album - we haven't seen the last of her. Having recently hit the headlines for criticising Miley Cyrus' performance at the MTV Video Music Awards, Cher's latest musical endeavour shows she is very much a contender for queen bee of planet pop. Lead track Woman's World is a stomping dancefloor hit that sets the tone. In some ways its 90s feel is refreshing, as it differs from other stars who have a very 'now' sound. I Walk Alone is an indescribably catchy and instantly loveable number, while she shows she can also do slow and mellow with the gorgeous Sirens. Rating: 8/10 John Newman - Tribute John Newman worked night and day penning the songs that have made his chart-topping dream a reality. The Yorkshireman patiently waited before collaborating with Rudimental on the UK number one smash Feel The Love and steering his own way with the global hit Love Me Again. The 23-year-old's debut album, Tribute, is a candied but studied pop experience, bound for commercial radio. While Newman presents a broad Dales drawl in conversation, from behind the microphone there comes a peculiar mid-Atlantic singing voice that registers between the mellifluous soul burr of Rick Astley and the sky-scraping theatrical twang of Cee Lo Green. I Rating: 6/10 Agnes Obel - Aventine Copenhagenborn Agnes Obel has been big news in her native Denmark for quite a while now. Her first album, Philharmonics, released in 2010, won her a major following despite its eclecticism and its follow-up is equally as impressive, with the added bonus of being more accessible too. The mood throughout is sombre and piano- led, with the 32-year-old's mournful singing working a treat and matching the mood of the album perfectly. The opener Chord Left sets the tone with its piano-driven instrumentation, with second track, Fuel To Fire, the highlight of an accomplished set. Words Are Dead and the closing Smoke And Mirrors also underline her musical charms to perfection. Rating: 9/10
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