The Student Playlist

Showcasing the Best New Music, Curating the Classics

Latest Reviews

REVIEW: Twin Peaks – ‘Lookout Low’ (Grand Jury Music)

Having become famous for their rowdy Chicago homecoming gigs packed out by their dedicated local fanbase who adore their charming, enthusiastic take on punk and…

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REVIEW: Frankie Cosmos – ‘Close It Quietly’ (Sub Pop)

Under the guise of Frankie Cosmos, Greta Kline delivers dreamy guitar pop on the deceptively short album, Close It Quietly – 21 economical, thumbnail sketches that…

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REVIEW: Bat For Lashes – ‘Lost Girls’ (AWAL)

Haven’t we had enough of ‘80s nostalgia? The mullets, the movies, the synth parade? The 30-year cultural cycle is strong and hard to dismiss, and…

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REVIEW: Lower Dens – ‘The Competition’ (Ribbon Music)

Emotional and often politically charged, the new Lower Dens album titled The Competition is not only a journey into synth-pop, but also an opportunity to…

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REVIEW: Squid – ‘Town Centre’ EP (Speedy Wunderground)

Riding a wave of intelligent, innovative punk-inspired music that’s been sweeping the British indie scene of late, Brighton-based quintet Squid’s output to date has placed…

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REVIEW: Barns Courtney – ‘404’ (Virgin EMI / Universal)

Born in Aylesbury but raised in Seattle, singer-songwriter Barns Courtney and his sophomore LP 404, successor to his 2017 debut The Attractions Of Youth, sees…

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Staff Playlists

An Introduction to Warp

Time and place play a critical role in explaining the rise of Warp Records and how it achieved the kind of success that it did.…

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PLAYLIST: August 2019

Check out our playlist over at Spotify of all the best new music that's been released so far in August. Foals have released a brand new banger…

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PLAYLIST: An Introduction to Hyperdub

The story of an electronic artist founding then nurturing a label is not an unusual one. Normally offering the opportunity to build within a scene…

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Live Music

Gigs & Festivals

PREVIEW: Gigs of the Week in Leeds, 14th-20th September

Skinny Living @ Brudenell Social Club, Saturday 14th September Thanks to the overwhelming demand for tickets for their Friday night gig, Skinny Living have added…

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PREVIEW: Gigs of the Week in Leeds, 7th-13th September

SASAMI @ Brudenell Social Club, Saturday 7th September Sasami Ashworth – who records under her first name SASAMI – cemented her place among indie’s rapidly…

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PREVIEW: Gigs of the Week in Leeds, August 31st-September 6th

Kaputt @ Wharf Chambers, Sunday 1st September A six-piece post-punk act from Glasgow who first gained attention at the back end of 2017 with their…

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Classic Albums

2000s

CLASSIC ’00s: The xx – ‘xx’

Looking back on the decade that’s passed since the quiet release of The xx’s debut album, it’s slightly strange to think of xx as a…

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CLASSIC ’00s: Florence & The Machine – ‘Lungs’

Big voice, big presence and big sound – the grandeur of Florence Welch and her Machine is something anyone who’s ever had a glimpse of…

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CULT ’00s: Dirty Projectors – ‘Bitte Orca’

It was about Dirty Projectors’ incredible breakout album Bitte Orca that Time Magazine’s Josh Tyrangiel birthed the immortal critical phrase “making the critic’s job undoable”…

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Classic Albums

1990s

CULT ’90s: The Magnetic Fields – ’69 Love Songs’

There’s a line in ‘How Fucking Romantic’, halfway through the first disc in The Magnetic Fields’ massive triple-album 69 Love Songs, in which Dudley Klute,…

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CLASSIC ’90s: Jeff Buckley – ‘Grace’

Who could’ve thought that an album that peaked well outside the Top 100 in the charts upon its release, regardless of the ‘underground’ following its…

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CLASSIC ’90s: Portishead – ‘Dummy’

Of all of the new genres that Britain threw up during the Nineties, trip-hop was the most quintessentially British sound of them all. Skewed beats…

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Classic Albums

1980s

CULT ’80s: Beastie Boys – ‘Paul’s Boutique’

In the aftermath of their legendary party-starting debut Licensed To Ill in 1986, Beastie Boys were in a curious place. They moved to the West…

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CLASSIC ’80s: The Cure – ‘Disintegration’

Since their inception in the late ‘70s in the wake of punk, Robert Smith and the rotating cast of The Cure have become a globally…

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CLASSIC ’80s: The Stone Roses – ‘The Stone Roses’

Three decades after the release of their self-titled debut album, there’s very little left to say about The Stone Roses at this point in history.…

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Classic Albums

1970s

CLASSIC ’70s: Gary Numan – ‘The Pleasure Principle’

Synthesisers had been in use in popular music long before our collective consciousness normally recognises them as having appeared in the charts. Edgar Froese had…

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CULT ’70s: The Slits – ‘Cut’

The first time you pick up a copy of Cut, the icon(oclast)ic debut album by The Slits, you’re immediately struck by its front cover of…

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CULT ’70s: Talking Heads – ‘Fear Of Music’

The punk explosions of the late Seventies were widely imagined as a ‘year zero’ for pop music, a point where artists should rip things up…

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Classic Albums

1960s

CULT ’60s: Nick Drake – ‘Five Leaves Left’

In contrast to the mythologising that often surrounds rock star deaths, the story of Nick Drake is not a remotely glamorous one. Instead, it is…

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CLASSIC ’60s: The Who – ‘Tommy’

The ‘rock opera’ has had a chequered history as it has evolved in the half-century since the archetype was established in 1969. Like its close…

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CULT ’60s: The Velvet Underground – ‘The Velvet Underground’

In between the dazzling avant-garde architecture of that 1967 debut album, still rightly celebrated today as one of the greatest albums in history, and the…

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Staff Lists

The Top 50 Tracks of 2018

As a companion piece to our annual end-of-year albums list published earlier this month, The Student Playlist presents The Top 50 Tracks of 2018. You…

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The Top 50 Albums of 2018

Although it’s been a year pock-marked with political and social uncertainty, that sense of upheaval and tension has resulted in some pretty fine art being…

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The Top 200 Tracks of the 1990s

Revisiting any period in popular music is always interesting, insofar as one’s memories of it change and evolve as time passes and the present gets…

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Artist Profiles

Remembering Daniel Johnston

Usually, when summarising the career of an artist in the wake of tragedy, there is a formality to the style, one filled with clichés like…

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“The House of the Jazz, of the Funk, of the Rhythm” – A Beginner’s Guide to A Tribe Called Quest

Lennon and McCartney; Morrissey and Marr; the Gallagher brothers. Some of the most iconic pop music ever made has been predicated by immense partnerships. Looking…

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“Listen To Me, I’m On The Stereo” – A Beginner’s Guide to Pavement

It’s been almost two decades since Pavement were active in any meaningful way, the group’s component parts quietly parting ways in the pursuit of solo…

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