The Bonus Track: Anaïs Mitchell, Meghan Trainor, The New Basement Tapes, Sinkane


Mum’s the word

“I told myself I wouldn’t be one of those women who has a kid and then cuts off all her hair, but a month or two after R was born I went at it with the kitchen scissors. Childhood is rebirth for women, you have to say goodbye to the old self and the hair represents that. This recording has something to do with that. I wanted to glance in the rearview before driving on.” All of which is a very Anaïs Mitchell way of announcing next month’s xoa, a stripped-back solo album, featuring retakes of old songs, with a couple of new ones thrown in for good measure. Fans of Hadestown, Young Man in America and Child Ballads (and you really should be) will not be ­disappointed. Watch the upcoming single “Now You Know”

Keeping it real

The size-zero issue has been in and around the fashion industry for some time, but now pop is having its say in the shape of 20-year-old Meghan ­Trainor’s debut single. Already a top five hit in the US, “All About That Bass” – a catchy slice of pure pop with lyrics ­celebrating the female form – is released in the UK next month and will, like it or not, be ­unavoidable. Sample verse: “I see a ­magazine/ Working that Photoshop/ We know that shit ain’t real/ Come on now make it stop.” Watch the video

Back to the basement

“Vintage” music fans got a double treat last week with new Leonard Cohen ­material and the announcement that a bunch of top-notch musicians (including Elvis Costello, T Bone Burnett and Jim James) had recorded The New Basement Tapes, an album using “lost” Dylan lyrics from 1967. Watch the video for “Nothing To It”

Next week’s biggie …

Kevin Harley wraps his ears around the soul-funk ­experimentation of Mean Love, by Sinkane. Listen to the single “How We Be”