"G-Man!!!!!!!!! What albums should we purchase this week G-Man???!!!!"

Ok so nobody has actually uttered the above sentence in my general direction or possibly in the history of all time but IF someone was to let at least a similar question fall from their lips my top three would be below. Please note that albums may have appeared only recently in the New Release Highlights section of the blog or elsewhere but that these three albums are particularly calling to me at this moment in time.

1. Have One On Me (2010) - Joanna Newsom

A triple-disc, string-laden affair might not exactly be an instant toe-tapper but Joanna Newsom is maturing at an exponetial rate. I am a big fan and really liked the latest offering the first time I heard it a few weeks back but for some reason it disappeared from my metaphorical "Listen To" pile. Seeing an artist perform new songs live is make-or-break and, in this case, it was a very positive make for me when I caught the performance of "'81" on Jools last week.

Recommended Listening Situation : Relaxing in a hammock in the garden on a sunny day

2. Riceboy Sleeps (2009) - Jónsi & Alex

More instrumental than Sigur Ros but every bit as beautifl.

Recommended Listening Situation : Walking home from town on a Saturday afternoon and during lunch

3. High Violet (2010) - The National

The opposite of my Have One On Me listening experience. Instant gold. Similar to their previous outings but just with a little more menace that pushes the soon-to-be-Electric-Picnic-playing Brooklyn band up a notch on my "Christ they are a good band" metre.

You can still stream the full album here.

Recommended Listening Situation : On your headphones walking into town on a Friday night