City Vibes

 |  August 30, 2012

Artist: Marcus Lawrence

Album: Count the Love

Rating:  * * * *

On Count the Love, singer-songwriter Marcus Lawrence explores relationships, passion and place in fourteen inspired tracks. Many of the album’s songs were recorded in Thailand, including City of Angels, a bold and emotive track about our very own Big Mango. Lawrence has an ability to engage the listener with tight compositions and captivating lyrics and is served well by his supporting cast of guitarists, saxophonists and drummers. This coterie of accomplished musicians ensures the album oozes a creativity and honesty so often missing from more commercialised works. To learn more about Lawrence and his music check out Marcus Lawrence Music on Facebook.

Artist: Blur

Album: Blur 21

Rating:  * * * *

Blur have inaugurated their 21st birthday with a box set aimed at their loyal fan base. This epic collection contains not just Blur’s seven triumphant LPs, but also over five hours worth of rare material and three DVDs. However, the real joy encapsulated within this sumptuous package is the opportunity to re-live Blur’s musical voyage, a trip soaked in tracks that evoke the hedonistic 90s. Parklife, released in 1994, remains the piece de resistance, a wild and at times cerebral album that defines the era and the band. You don’t have to splash out on this pricy collection to enjoy Blur’s back catalogue, but it will make it all the more enjoyable to own a little slice of musical history in such an opulent format.

Artist: Naz

Album: Life is Good

Rating:  * * * *

Life is Good is an album that bristles with confidence as Naz finally returns to form with his tenth studio album. Featuring tracks which exhibit hip hop’s broad range, Life is Good delivers melodic reflection in ‘Roses’, dirty skanking in ‘The Don’ and bouncing breaks infused with the sultry vocals of Amy Winehouse on ‘Cherry Wine.’ This range will ensure Life is Good hits the target with fans and a broader audience and is certainly one of the better releases within its genre so far this year.