Well-regarded art-rock group These New Puritans return with their third album, Field of Reeds, on 10 June. The four-piece, from Southend-on-Sea but based in London, recently offered up the first taste from the album in the shape of “Fragment Two”, a moody and stately piano-led affair. Look out, too, for the lovely, mournful horn section that calls to mind the work of jazz composer Terence Blanchard. Hear it at snd.sc/10avO5T. The song also comes as a free download straight out of the gate if you pre-order the full LP on iTunes.
Rejoice... sleek Kelis is up to her old tricks
The distinctive R&B singer Kelis (pictured) has recently signed to producer Dave Sitek's label, Federal Prism, and will reportedly release an album later in the year. For now, we have the excellent “Jerk Ribs”, which can be downloaded free at kelis-official.com. Alongside a fine, understated vocal from Kelis, the song, produced by Sitek, offers a great array of sounds right out of his usual playbook, with blasts of afrobeat-tinged horns, guitar stabs, rolling drum lines and a wash of synths.
Alt hero Mark's all fired up again
US singer-songwriter Mark Mulcahy has long been exalted in alt-rock circles. His last full studio album was in 2005, but he returns now after taking time off to look after his family following the death of his wife in 2008. In June he releases the record Dear Mark J Mulcahy, I Love You. “Firefly” is the first track to emerge from it: it's a fine, almost surprisingly jaunty effort. Hear it at snd.sc/1322wnF.
An indie label that's New York to its core
The Red Bull Music Academy has been running an extensive series of events in New York throughout May – and while most of us aren't lucky enough to be there, one can still keep up with some of it remotely. On the event's website is a short film presented at the New York event chronicling the history of the city's celebrated indie label DFA Records. It's a must for any buffs of the label, started in 2001 by James Murphy, Tim Goldsworthy and Jonathan Galkin, and giving us the likes of Murphy's LCD Soundsystem, The Rapture, Black Dice, Planningtorock and Prinzhorn Dance School, among many others. Watch it at ind.pn/18HODB7.