It’s James Bay! Without his hat! Cavorting with a Stranger Things star?! Channeling Kanye?! Writing the best Strokes song The Strokes never wrote?! Dan Stubbs meets a man of big ambition and sweet-smelling feet
"The punk-rock Joan of Arc of pop" ...That’s how Dave Stewart, formerly of The Eurythmics, summed up Lauren Mayberry after meeting her to work on ideas for Chvrches’ third album. And he may be on to something; ‘Love Is Dead’ filters religion, the refugee crisis and righteous politics through the band’s electropop-filter. The result? Grandstanding built for festival headline slots. Emily Mackay meets them in London.
Arctic Monkeys are back – but wait… with a piano? And sci-fi themes? And, gulp, no riffs? Kevin EG Perry meets Alex Turner at the iconic Hollywood Forever Cemetery to talk about ‘Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino’, the album that’s set to delight, confuse and cement his genius forever.
Stockport five-piece Blossoms are having a bloody ball. Having last week unveiled second LP ‘Cool Like You’, a massive album of synth-pop bangers that’s more Kylie Minogue than Oasis, they tell Jordan Bassett how they’re living the dream – and why they pretended to fall out before its release.
On the sly, Sunflower Bean have proven themselves one of the world's coolest, funnest and, er, hard-workingest bands. Following the brilliant 'Twentytwo In Blue' – a Top Five entry in NME's Albums Of 2018 – the New York trio today release the rocking follow-up EP, 'King Of The Dudes'. Rhian Daly meets them in Brooklyn to talk about music, patriarchy-smashing and that time at band camp.