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  • Xavier Farrow-Francis

The Groove Garden Top Tunes of ‘23: April-June

1. PARANOÏA, TRUE LOVE, ANGELS by Christine and the Queens

Chris, known as Redcar or Red, has crafted a superbly grandiose and sprawling masterclass with this project. PARANOÏA, TRUE LOVE, ANGELS explores  grief, love, death, identity, and much more. Inspired by the play Angels in America, Red is bare and raw all throughout the album as he weaves complex stories (à la MCR’s Black Parade) of introspection against spotlit backdrops of heavy bass and crashing drums. The final product is a lengthy but striking emotional experience that will have your jaw on the floor at multiple points.

Listen if you like: Portishead, The Weeknd, Róisín Murphy, George Michael

Genres: Art pop, trip hop, progressive pop, rock opera

2. Gag Order by Kesha

The past decade for Kesha has been hellish. She’s been stuck in a vicious cycle of court battles with her label executive and former producer, Dr. Luke. Gag Order^sees her coming brutally head to head with the tumultuous emotions and trauma she’s had to endure. It’s a gloriously passionate record that sees Kesha at her most vulnerable, but also at her boldest. Gone is the party animal Kesha we all know; the popstar approach is abandoned. In her place is a daring music experimentalist utilising singer-songwriter and avant-pop-isms to accurately express a worn and tired woman who is sick of being silenced.

Listen if you like: James Blake, Bon Iver, Caroline Polachek, Alex G

Genres: Art pop, singer-songwriter, glitch folk, ambient pop

3. Stereo Mind Game by Daughter

The latest offering from Daughter comes six years after their last, but it may well be their best. Meditative and melancholic, Stereo Mind Game is a bittersweet album about acceptance over emotional situations out of your control. The band captures distance in such an impeccable way across the record, through spacious beds of delicate vocals, airy drums and guitars, and glistening electronics. The listening experience of Stereo Mind Game is poignant and seamless, with many moments of great emotional resonance to be found.

Listen if you like: Julien Baker, The National, Sigur Rós

Genres: Dream pop, indie rock, post-rock

4. Good Lies by Overmono

Lush and fucking banging is one of the greatest combos you can have on an electronic album, and Overmono have got this in spades. After dominating the live electronic scene for the last couple of years, their debut album presents us with hazy, euphoric, and stimulating beats, interweaving some excellent samples throughout. Good Lies provides a diverse dance experience that is as atmospheric as it is consistently groovy.

Listen if you like: Four Tet, Disclosure, Burial, PinkPantheress

Genres: UK bass, future garage, breakbeat, 2-step

5. gisela by NOIA

Quite simply, NOIA’s debut album is spell-binding. gisela is a hopeful and contemplative listen that evokes a mythological beauty, with its soft glitchiness taking your hand and leading you through a misty sort of psychic terrain. Fusing Spanish, Catalan, Portuguese, and English, NOIA delicately trills over this story of an album, her inward-looking poetry constantly sparking wonder and amazement. It’s beautiful and wholly touching.

Listen if you like: Björk, Caroline Polachek, oklou, FKA twigs

Genres: Art pop, ambient pop, glitch pop


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