BEST COAST - The Only Place

LOS Angeles based Best Coast take their garage rock surf pop a step further with their second album.

Vocalist Bethany Cosentino has spoken of how the band wanted to move away from the lo-fi sound of their debut Crazy For You and it shows here, with a much more polished sound on display.

But it doesn’t mean they have lost what made them special.

The title track kick-starts the album with irresistible charm, while No One Like You and How They Want Me To Be is a heartbreakingly beautiful track which would fit well on the Dirty Dancing soundtrack.

THE TEMPER TRAP - Need Your Love

I’VE got to be honest and say that I’m a tad disappointed by this CD.

Having been a big fan of this Australian band’s debut Conditions which had featured one of 2009’s outstanding tracks Sweet Disposition.

But opener Need Your Love reminded me, unbelievably, of Savage Garden, and second track London’s Burning, about last year’s riots, wasn’t much better either.

Tracks such as The Sea Is Calling do offset that slightly, with some lovely playing, but to be honest I don’t really know what’s happened to such a promising band.

CORNERSHOP - Urban Turban

JOY can be found from start to finish on this latest release from the always entertaining Cornershop.

Lyricist Tjinder Singh is on fire and at his witty best on the likes of What Did The Hippie Have In His Bag?

Non-Stop Radio feels like you have just stepped into a roller disco in the 1970s and instrumental tracks such as Who’s Gonna Lite It Up? are music to the ears.

It’s all as groovy as you could imagine, with melodic basslines, tablas and drum machines thrown into the melting point as the record bounces from 60s rock to modern-day house.

This is their best album since their epic 1997 release When I Was Born For The 7th Time, which featured the globe-conquering Brimful of Asha.