As we edge closer to the end of the year, October provided us with 31 days of great new music and plenty of entertainment. I feel I have to kick off monthly favourites with Adele, seeing as she sent the whole world into meltdown with her new single Hello; the first new material since 2102’s Skyfall. The single is currently on course to becoming the fastest-selling single of 2015 in the UK, after only three days on sale. The video of course sparked multiple memes and videos such as Lionel vs Adele, Attenborough narrates video, Ellen DeGeneres’ funny skit – the list goes on. The video received an average of 1 million views per hour in the first 48 hours on Youtube and hit the 100 million mark within 5 days, only beaten by Psy’s ‘Gentleman’, who still holds the record with 100m views in four days. Elsewhere for Adele, the singer is set to perform a TV special ‘Adele At The BBC’ with host Graham Norton (Nov 20), followed by a special performance at Radio City Music Hall in New York (Dec 14). So while it felt like October belonged solely to Adele, there were in fact other great new releases and highly anticipated returns such as Miike Snow’s Heart Is Full, his first single in 3 years, Adele’s Hello (more on that later) and Loyle Carner’s standout track Ain’t Nothing Changed. Before we look at my top songs for October – and believe me there’s quite a few this month, let’s have a look at what’s been happening in terms of albums, tours, awards and everything else in between.
In album news, Adele finally confirmed her third album 25, while Rihanna teased fans with her new album art ‘Anti’, but no news on a release date yet. After the success of their recent Live Lounge month, Radio 1 unveiled their 2015 double disc Live Lounge album, featuring artists such as Muse, Sam Smith and Florence + The Machine. Elton John announced details of his 33rd studio album ‘Wonderful Crazy Night’ set for release in February, while The Corrs announced details for their forthcoming album White Light, (Nov 27) before they embark on a headline tour of the UK and Ireland. In the charts this month, Brotherly duo Disclosure claimed their second number one album with Caracal, fighting off strong competition from New Order’s Music Complete. Rudimental also scored their second UK no1 album with We The Generation, while Faithless achieved their third UK number one album with Faithless 2.0, featuring remixes of their biggest hits by the likes of Avicii and Eric Prydz. KDA ft Katy B and Tinie Tempah beat off strong competition from 1D to score a number one with the infectious ‘Rumble’, while Sam Smith’s Writing’s on the Wall was the first Bond theme to ever reach no 1 in the charts. Oh and don’t forget to check out Drake’s ‘Hotline Bling‘, which includes some seriously questionable dad-dancing! Queue the funny memes. So while Adele’s Hello video may have broken every record imaginable, include dethroning Swift’s Bad Blood record for most viewed video in 24 hours, there are still a few video records that have yet to be broken. Wiz Khalifa and Charlie Puth’s ‘See You Again‘ reached a record breaking 1 billion views on YouTube, which now places them 10th in most viewed videos of all time. Any guesses who’s top? “Op, Op, Op, Op, Oppa Gangnam Style. Yes, Psy still remains on top with 2.4 billions views since July 2012.
The highly anticipated Mercury Prize Nominations were unveiled by Lauren Laverne, with Aphex Twin, Florence + the Machine and Wolf Alice among the nominees. Check out the full list here and listen to the playlist of nominated artists here. The Awards show will take place in the Radio Theatre at Broadcasting House (Nov 20) , and screened on BBC 4 later that evening. Continuing with awards, Sam Smith’s ‘Stay With Me’ has been awarded song of the year at the BMI Awards in London, ahead of Hozier and Ed Sheeran. But fear not, Ed will still sleep soundly as his song ‘Thinking Out Loud’ has made him the first artist to reach 500 million streams on Spotify for one song. The AMA nominations were also unveiled with Taylor Swift, Ed Sheeran and The Weekend leading the pack. Tune in on Nov 22 with host J-Lo. The Grammy’s are set to pay tribute to Frank Sinatra to honour what would have been his 100th birthday, with performances from Alicia Keys, John Legend, Usher, Celine Dion, Lady Gaga, Adam Levine, and Carrie Underwood. Sinatra 100 – An All-Star Grammy Concert will air on CBS Dec 6th. Biber won big at this year’s EMA Awards, taking home 5 awards, while Swifty won Best song for Bad Blood. Dj Mag’s annual Top 100 DJ’s poll has been announced, with Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike topping the poll for the first time. The duo dethroned Hardwell who placed 2nd this year, followed by Martin Garrix, Armin Van Buuren and Tiesto completing the top 5. However, they all better watch out, as 3 year old DJ Arch Jr showcased his skills on South Africa’s Got Talent. Check out the little superstar DJ here.
With 2016 just around the corner, what better way than to kick off new year with a tour. Everything Everything are set to support Foals on their 2016 tour, while Rudimental kicked off their We The Generation Tour in Edinburgh’s Corn Exchange and are set play their biggest headline show to date at London’s O2 Arena (March 3). Years & Years embark upon their first ever arena tour. Check out the full dates here. Noel Gallagher‘s tour kicks of in April with support from Super Furry Animals, while long time rivals Blur, are set to release their new documentary New World Towers, documenting the story behind their first album in 16 years. Welsh favourite, Sir Tom Jones, announced details of his forthcoming tour ‘In Conversation with Sir Tom Jones’. The 4-date intimate tour will see Jones delve into his successful career with BBC6 Music presenter Matt Everitt, while they discuss his forthcoming autobiography Over the Top and sing classics both old and new. Mercury prize nominees Wolf Alice are hitting the road again in 2016 for a UK tour. The London band will call at cities including Belfast, Manchester, Cardiff and London in March. Were you one of the lucky one’s to get their hands on a Glastonbury ticket? With 120,000 tickets selling out in 28 minutes, Glastonbury continues to dominate Festival sales. Now for the big question – Who do you think will headline? In other festival news, what do you get when you combine The Prodigy, Groove Armada, Jungle and Snow sports? Snowbombing 2016! Yes the snow sports and music festival returns in 2016 (April 4-9) for it’s 12th year in Mayrhofen Ski Resort, Austria. Other acts announced so far include Andy C, Oliver Heldens, Netsky, Wilkinson (DJ set), Hannah Wants, Bondax, Hot Since 82, T Williams, Ben Pearce and Bicep. And Just when you think Miley Cyrus has done it all, she’s only gone and announced details of her forthcoming naked gig with the Flaming Lips. Yes, NAKED! Not only the artists, but the audience too.
How about a bit of a walk down memory lane? Oasis’s era-defining album (What’s The Story Morning Glory) turned 20 in October. Relieve the album on Spotify. Continuing with this 90’s flashback, a Spice Girls and Backstreet Boys joint tour may be on the cards, while U2 and Take that kicked off the return of TFI Friday with Chris Evans. The 10 part series continues on Channel 4 at 8pm, after it’s successful comeback special earlier in the year.
In technology news, Siri seems to be rebelling against non apple music subscribers. When asked a question such as, ‘what’s the most popular song in the charts today?’, Siri responds with “I can’t look that up for you. You don’t seem to be subscribed to Apple Music!” Sassy! Spotify on the other hand are set to challenge Beats 1 with a selection of ‘In Residence’ shows from the likes of Big Narstie, Tonga, MixMag and Jungle. Beats Pill+ unveiled their latest bluetooth speakers since being taken over by Apple. The speakers are set to retail at £189. HP on the other hand, are rivalling Apple Music and Spotify with its own streaming service called HP Lounge. The service will be free for HP device users and offers unlimited streaming, curated playlists, bonus footage, recommendations and the ability to purchase concert tickets. Only snag is, their library only contains acts signed to Universal. Bose unveiled their new SoundTouch 10 multiroom speaker (£165.95) with Bluetooth, Wireless and integration with Spotify.
Last but not least, face-palm moment of the month has to go to Chris Evans, after his mistook Adele for Beyonce during an interview. Referring to her as Sasha Fierce, to which Adele replied “That’s Beyoncé! Sasha Fierce is Beyoncé’s alter ego, and she’s now Mrs Carter. I wish I was Sasha Fierce.” At least she took it well. Listen to the cringe worth moment here!
Ok, on with the music, check out my favourite tracks below!
1) MØ – Kamikaze
While MO and Major lazer had arguably one of the biggest songs of the summer with ‘Lean On’, Danish singer MO has once again teamed up with Diplo for her latest single ‘Kamikaze’. This will be MO’s third collaboration with Diplo, having previously collaborated with the producer on her 2013 single XXX 88 Kamikaze premiered with Annie Mac as her Hottest Record and serves up a laidback pop gem, with its middle-eastern sounding strings and brass. There’s a playful groove to Kamikaze, with MO’s flitting vocals bouncing effortlessly throughout. Upcoming dates for MO include XOYO in London (Nov 25)
2) Bloc Party – The Love Within
Bloc Party (Kele Okereke, Russell Lissack and new members Louise Bartle on drums and Justin Harris on bass), unveiled their new single The Love Within. Presenting a more synth driven vibe with it’s pulsing synths and electronic flourishes, their new musical direction seems to have divided fans. Nevertheless, Bloc Party know to to blend soul and groove with their infectious melodies and feel good rhythms. The Love Within is taken from the band’s forthcoming LP, HYMNS, due January 29th via Infectious Music/BMG/Vagrant Records. Upcoming UK dates include Albert Hall in Manchester (Dec 3) and St John’s in Hackney, London (Dec 4). Further dates across EU, Asia and Australia can be found here.
3) Eric Prydz – Opus (Four Tet remix)
Get ready for 10 minutes of pure perfection. While Prydz created an absolute masterpiece with his latest single Opus, taken from his Pryda 10 series, London based producer Four Tet has taken it to the next level with a stunning new remix. Back in July, Four Tet sent out a tweet hoping to take on remix duties for the Swedish DJ, and luckily for Four Tet, Prydz was only too happy to oblige. Fourtet delivers on all fronts, elevating the single to all new heights, while paying homage to the classic original and Prydz’s signature arpeggios. Upcoming dates for Four Tet include Alexandra Palace in London (Nov 27th), while Prydz is gearing up for his EPIC 4.0 tour.
4) Mura Masa – Love For That Ft Shura
19-year-old producer Mura Masa, unveiled his latest single Love For That, which premiered as Annie Mac’s Hottest Record. Joining him on this unique and exciting collaboration is singer/producer Shura (2Shy, White Light) Shura’s etherial vocals glide effortless above Mura’s crisp, eclectic production of bells and strings to flutes and distorted vocals. Shura’s vocals are hypnotising, while Mura Masa’s beats are irresistible. Love for that serves as the follow up to Mura Masa’s Someday, Somewhere EP. Upcoming dates include his Spring EU tour in 2016, and you can catch Shura at Sheffield City Centre (Feb 27) and O2 Shepherds Bush (May 26)
5) Skepta – Top Boy
Joseph Adenuga, aka Skepta, is back with his new single ‘Top Boy’. The banger serves as the follow up to the massive ‘Shutdown’, which is still making waves today. The accompanying video serves as a trailer for this forthcoming Noisey Documentary, highlighting Skepta & BBK on their US and Canadian leg of their tour. Top Boy showcases Skepta’s slick flow over some infectious beats and glitchy electronic production. Skepta is currently working on his long awaited album Konnichiwa, which was originally scheduled for a March 2015 release. Until then, you can catch Skepta and JME on their joint headline show in London’s Brixton Academyu (Dec 18)
6) Jonas Rathsman – New Generation/Conium
Swedish Producer Jonas Rathsman, unveiled his latest single New Generation/Conium. Having previously been named as Pete Tong’s ‘Future Star’, previous releases for the producer include singles via French Express, DFTD and more recently, Wolfsbane via Disclosures’ Method Label White label. New Generation/Conium serves up a weighty, driving bass line, murky synths and some eclectic percussion to deliver a truly sculptured soundscape. New Generation is taken from Rathsman’s latest EP, which is set for release via Kompakt Records this month (Nov 6). Upcoming dates for Rathsman include NY eve in Electric Brixton and Bugged Out Weekender (Jan 15-17).
7) Mumbai Science – Black Hole
Mumbai Science, aka Belgian producer duo Jonas Kiesekoms and Maarten Elen, featured in my April’s selections with their infectious single King Of The Top Floor. Now the producer duo are back with their latest infectious offering – Black Hole. Taken from their Black Hole EP, the single serves up some deep baselines, playful vocal loops, quirky production and some infectious beats. The Black Hole EP features a remix from Floorplan (aka Robert Hood, Underground Resistance) and is set for release Nov 6. Upcoming dates for Mumbai Science include Electroblog Festival (Dec 5) in Italy
8) Jacob Plant – Reflections ft Example
Jacob Plant previously featured in my April selections with his bass heavy single Louder This time around, Plant has teamed up with Example for his latest stomper of a track, Reflections. Plant first captured our attention with the hard hitting Fire and Shakedown, along with his high profile remixes. His latest single Reflections packs a punch with it’s powerful electro vibes and signature bass heavy drops. The addition of Examples vocals delivers an infectious melodic hook. Reflections is available via Skint Records (Nov 27) and you can catch Plant at Brixton Academy with Dyro and Shift K3Y (Oct 31)
) Jack Garratt – Breathe Life
Ahh the soothing vocals of Jack Garratt. The 24-year-old singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist unveiled his new single Breathe Life. The single serves as the follow up to The Love You’re Given and Weathered, and once again delivers a breath of fresh air with his vibrant vocals, multi-layered instrumentation, fuzzy synths and a sweeping chorus. 2016 is going to be a big year for Garratt. Upcoming tour dates include headline show at Brixton Academy (April 15). Expect his debut album Phase to be released February 19 via Island Records.
10) Tiesto and Oliver Heldens – Wombass
What do you get when you cross dance heavyweight Tiesto with the infectious melodies from Oliver Heldens? Wombass!! Yes, the two producers have joined forces for their latest collaboration. While Helden’s trademarks are clearly evident throughout, from his infectious hooks and signature breakbeats, Tiesto’s influences are harder to pinpoint. Maybe he come up with the title 😉 Regardless, the infectious track is one you’re bound to hear across the clubs over the coming months. Upcoming dates for the duo include Delhi, India (Dec 19).
11) NAO – Bad Blood
London based Neo-soul singer NAO, premiered her new single ‘Bad Blood’ with Annie Mac as her Hottest Record. Produced by Grades, the single serves as the follow up her second EP February 15 (II MMXV) released earlier this year, and Disclosure’s Superego, which she featured as vocalist. With vocals similar in style to Aluna from AlunaGeorge, NAO’s range is so diverse and she weaves in and out of sensual R&B textures and elongated synths. Bad Blood is taken from NAO’s forthcoming debut album, due later in 2016. Bad Blood is available now via Little Tokyo Recordings. In the meantime, you can cath NAO at London’s Heaven (Dec 3), The Warehouse Project (Dec 18) as well as multiple dates in 2016
12) Kevin Garrett – Refuse
Brooklyn-based Kevin Garrett unveiled his latest RB flavoured single, Refuse. The Roc nation signee serves up raw emotion at its finest, as his soulful, falsetto-style vocals glide effortlessly over the delicate piano driven ballad and electronic flourishes. Refuse serves as the follow up to his debut EP Mellow Drama, which included tracks such as ‘Coloring’ and ‘Control’. Expect a debut album later next year. Currently on tour with X Ambassadors, check out his 2016 US dates here
13) Bonkaz – You Don’t Know
London based MC Bonkaz unveiled his new single You Don’t Know, which serves as the follow up to his debut single ‘We Run The Block’. Produced by The Splurgeboys and Sonny Reeves, You Don’t Know samples Dizzee Rascals 2009 hit ‘Bonkers’. Having recently been nominated for Best Newcomer at the MOBO Awards, the grime single perfectly captures his raw flow, mixed with gritty, bass-heavy production. You Don’t Know is available now.
14) Zhu x Skrillex x They – Working For It
ZHU featured in my September Selections with Automatic ft AlunaGeorge. Now, Producer Stephen Zhu has unveiled his latest single ‘Working For It’, featuring Skrillex and R&B duo THEY. Premiering as Zane Lowe’s World Record on Beats 1, Working For It delivers an industrial sounding vibe, with silky vocals, Skrillex’s trademark production and THEY’s hard-hardhitting R&B influences. Taken from Zhu’s forthcoming Genesis Series Project, due November 6th via Mind Of A Genius, the EP features collaborations from the likes of Gallant, AlunaGeorge and Bone Thugs & Harmony and A-Trak.
15) HÆLOS – Pray
London trio HÆLOS (Arthur Delaney, Dom Goldsmith, and Lotti Benardout), unveiled their new single Pray. The single concludes the trio of releases and accompanying videos directed by Jesse Jenkins for previous singles ‘Earth Not Above’ and ‘Dust’. HÆLOS delivers a bittersweet, euphoric single, filled with rousing echoed vocals and moody beats throughout. Pray is set for release on December 4 via Matador Records. Upcoming dates for HÆLOS include The Lexington, London (January 11) and Manchester’s Night & Day Cafe (March 5)
16) Boston Bun – Paris Groove feat. Mayer Hawthorne
French producer Thibaud Noyer, AKA Boston Bun, unveiled his ridiculously infectious new single Paris Groove ft Mayer Hawthorne. which premiered with Annie Mac as her Hottest Record. While the funky single pays homage to Paris, the single has a distinctly retro feel to it with plenty of throwback to classic Chicago house, mixed with Hawthornes soulful lyrics and upbeat house vibes. Paris Groove follows Boston Bun’s three-part EP series titled Just for Freaks. Upcoming UK dates for Boston Bun include XOYO (Dec 19). Paris Groove is available now via Ed Banger Records.
17) Tiga – Don’t Break My Heart
With the success of his previous two singles ‘Bugatti’ and ‘Let’s Go Dancing’, Canadian producer Tiga unveiled his latest single ‘Don’t Break My Heart’. Tiga’s latest offering serves up some acid house, mixed with growling, murky baselines and his signature repetitive vocal hooks. While it’s been 7 years since Tiga’s last album, expect his third studio album early 2016. In the meantime catch him at London’s Koko (Nov 21) and New Year’s eve at the Hollywood Palladium, CA.
18) Fono – Everybody Knows ft Anna Straker
With the release of his debut single ‘Real Joy’ making quite the impact and propelling FONO into the spotlight, the Brighton producer unveiled his new single Everybody Knows. Fono’s talents lie in his ability to create music that’s both creative, engaging and unique and Everybody Knows is no exception. While taking a more subtle approach to his debut release, Everybody Knows delivers soulful future house, with infectious vocals from rising London singer Anna Straker. Upcoming dates for FONO include Button Factory in Dublin (Nov 6) and EDC Mexico (Feb 27-28) Everybody knows is available now via Youthemic
19) Redlight – Metronome ft Roses Gabor
Bristol producer Redlight is a regular entry to my Monthly Selections. The Bristol producer unveiled another new single ahead of his debut album X Colour (Nov 19) and features the captivating vocals of Roses Gabor. Metronome serves as the follow up to Threshold and Gold Teeth and delivers a bass heavy house track with hypnotic vocals from Gabor. X Colour is availble Nov 19th via Lobster Boy Records. In the meantime, be sure to catch Redlight at Warehouse Project (Nov 26) as well as Annie Mac Presents (Dec 4-5) at Brixton Academy.
20) Goldlink – Spectrum
DC rapper GoldLink unveiled his new single Spectrum, taken from his forthcoming debut album ‘And After That We Didn’t Talk. The Black Butter signee displays his rapid rap skills, amidst the trippy dance-beats and infectious vocal hooks. Goldlink delivers with such percussion and flow making him one exciting rapper for 2016. Check out Goldlink at one of his many upcoming US dates. And After That, We Didn’t Talk is available Nov 6.
21) Cameron AG – Lost Direction
Time for the sweet, retro style vocals of Oxford based singer/songwriter Cameron A G. Cameron’s new single Lost Direction is a beautiful ballad filled with stirring strings and delicate piano accompaniment, while Cameron’s vocals are heartfelt and melodic, bringing artists like Lennon to mind with the slap-back echo style vocals. Cameron manages to conjure up memories of times past with his unique sounding vocals. Upcoming dates for Cameron A G include Huw Stephen Presents at The Social (Nov 10), Mutations Festival (Nov 28) and Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) on Feb 4.
22) Friend Within – Run
Liverpool house producer ‘Friend Within’ is back with his latest single ‘The Run’. With a string of impressive tracks in his back catalogue including The Renegade, his infectious remix of Gotsome’s Bassline, and collaboration with Disclosure on The Mechanism, his latest single Run once again delivers with its punchy bass lines, rousing vocal samples and classic house vibes. The Run is taken from his forthcoming Run EP which is set for release Nov 20 via his own label He Loves You. Upcoming dates for Friend Within include The Button Factory, DUblin (Dec 30 and Jan 30) and Stealth, Nottingham on New Year’s eve.
23) Formation – All The Rest Is Noise
South London duo Formation, made up of Matt and Will Ritson, unveiled their latest single All The Rest Is Noise. The single premiered with Zane Lowe on Beats 1 and is taken from their forthcoming 4-track EP Under The Tracks. Produced by Brighton producer Leon Vynehall, All The Rest Is Noise serves up a quirky slice of futuristic funk and dance-pop. With it’s infectious pop hooks, rousing vocals and bouncy melodic keys, Formation know how to delivery groove-pop at it’s finest. All The Rest Is Noise is available Nov 20 via Meno Records. Fresh from supporting Foals in Europe, upcoming dates for the group include Iceland Airwaves Festival (Nov 5) Dublin’s Metropolis Festival (Nov 7&8) and Lost Village Festival (May 27-30)
24) The 1975 – Love Me
The 1975 premiered their new single Love Me with Annie Mac as her Hottest Record. The retro sounding single is taken from their forthcoming second album ‘I Like It When You Sleep For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware Of It’ and serves up a more pop-infused sound, and a standout guitar riff that just oozes funk, bringing David Bowies ‘Fame’ guitar hook to mind. I Like It When You Sleep For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware Of It is set or release Feb 26 via Dirty Hit. Upcoming London dates include O2 Academy Brixton (March 5-9) Full Tour dates can be found here
25) iSHi – We Run ft French Montana & Raekwon
Swedish Producer Eshraque Mughal, aka iSHi, the creative mind behind Tinie Tempah’s Written in The Stars and Emeli Sandé & Professor Green’s smash hit Read All About It, is back with his latest single We Run. This time, the producer has teamed up with hip hop legend Raekwon (Wu-Tang Clan) and US rapper French Montana to serve up a hard-hitting hip-hop record, with some slick production to match. The high pitched vocal sample used throughout works well against the raw NYC vibes. Having previously worked with artists such as Pusha T, Usher and Avicii, We Run is available via PRMD Music.
26) Dua Lipa – Be The One
19-year-old rising singer Dua Lipa, unveiled her new single ‘Be The One‘. Co-written with Pawws, Be The One serves up a fresh slice of effortless pop, with plenty of colour and life. Dua’s vocals are captivating and soar throughout. Upcoming dates for the London singer include dates in Bristol, Brighton, Glasgow, Manchester, Birmingham, Nottingham and London as part of her UK tour, kicking off Jan 16th. Be The One is available now .
27) Drake – Hotline Bling (Erykah Badu Remix)
After Disclosure and Sam Smith performed an exceptional cover of Drake’s Hotline Bling on Radio 1’s Live Lounge, Erykah Badu has stepped up and delivered her incredible remix. The seven and a half minute track, starts off with a spoken interlude, with Badhu’s version highlighting the woman’s perspective of the call. Badhu effortlessly moves between the original, while adding her own sense of new-soul to the mix. The cover was co-written by Seven Benhamin, Badhu’s son, and is available on her forthcoming mixtape But You Caint Use My Phone and renamed as ‘Cell U Lar Device’. Check out the sweet sounds below.
Check out the full playlist below with over 90 minutes for your listening pleasure!