Foals are slowly easing themselves back into the fray ahead of the 11 February release of the third album, Holy Fire.
In November we got a sample of where the Oxford five-piece was heading with the crunching guitars of their intense single "Inhaler" – youtu.be/qJ_PMvjmC6M. Recently they offered up another track; it's streaming on the band's YouTube channel at youtu.be/bAsGFnLl2u0. A fine effort, "My Number" is more light on its feet than "Inhaler", with skittering guitars and bouncing rhythms recalling their earlier albums. I'm particularly fond of the airy "woo-woo" backing vocals.
Sufjan raps his own Christmas present
Not content with putting out Silver & Gold, Sufjan Stevens's hefty 5 EP (and other treats) box-set release of Christmas music – the second of his career – the prolific American musician has also dropped a fairly bizarre Christmas rap mixtape. Oscillating between Stevens's own experimental beat-making and his more trademark delicate sounds are rap contributions from the Pro Letarians, members of Das Racist, and Kitty Pryde. Hear "Chopped and Scrooged" streaming at snd.sc/S4B3CA and download it at ind. pn/Z7ItIs.
The Knife keep the new album in the family
Whetting electronic music fans' appetite for the coming year nicely are The Knife. It's seven years since the mysterious Swedish brother-and-sister duo Karin Dreijer Andersson and Olof Dreijir released their last album together, the hugely acclaimed Silent Shout . Last week the siblings announced they would release a new album, Shaking the Habitual, on 8 April. Over on the theknife.net they offered up a brief video for the record: in keeping with their usually sinister and stark sound, the video contained some eerie soundscapes and David Lynch-like footage.