Welcome to Far Out’s weekly vinyl corner feature, where we look to bring you a tempting selection of records from some of our favourite artists, bargain vinyl deals to look out for, and unmissable limited-edition releases. This week we’re celebrating some of the best releases of 2022 to date with a diverse selection of affordable studio albums to add to your collection.
Last year, the vinyl comeback enjoyed another milestone year as record sales surpassed that of CDs for the first time in three decades. The return to plastic has steadily climbed since the invasion of streaming services in the late 2000s. While the weightless, highly accessible and practical format is great for discovering and consuming swathes of new music while you’re out and about, there’s nothing like coming home to a bit of vinyl.
My fellow collectors out there will agree if there’s an artist or album you love, there’s always a good reason to have the turntable at the ready and a 12” slot reserved on the shelf for inevitable expansion. The sound quality of vinyl brings something more hearty and vibrant with its analogue warmth and crisp definition that there really isn’t a substitute for.
So if, like me, you have a soft spot for these groovy discs of plastic, allow me to walk you through ten hot picks for this week. We have some post-punk picks from Fontaines DC and Wet Leg, alongside some indie belters from The Smile and Belle and Sebastian.
The following selections have been handpicked by Far Out Magazine, and as a result, we may earn from qualifying purchases.
The 10 best vinyl deals available on Amazon this week
Fontaines DC – Skinty Fia [Limited Red Edition]
Few rock bands have enjoyed the rise to such widespread acclaim in recent years as Dublin’s post-punk sensation Fontaines DC. After nearly a two-year wait, Fontaines have followed up their dark and brooding second studio album, A Hero’s Death, with the critically acclaimed Skinty Fia.
Skinty Fia is a term used colloquially in Ireland as an expletive. The title roughly translates to English as ‘the damnation of the deer’; its meaning has been diluted through generations. Part bittersweet romance, part darkly political triumph – the songs ultimately form a long-distance love letter, one that laments an increasingly privatised culture in danger of going the way of the extinct Irish giant deer. The album is home to the catchy singles’ Jackie Down the Line’ and ‘I Love You’ but holds much more to be explored thanks to the band’s versatility and Grian Chatten’s poetic lyrics. This limited edition release comes pressed on red vinyl to match the theme of the cover art.
Available for purchase here for £21.99.
The Smile – A Light for Attracting Attention
The debut album for Thom Yorke and Jonny Greenwood’s Radiohead side project, The Smile, has come as a fresh update on the classic Radiohead sound. The colourful abstract artwork was created by Thom Yorke alongside his long-time art collaborator Stanley Donwood, while the music was produced to perfection by Nigel Godrich.
A Light For Attracting Attention was released on May 13th, receiving an 8.9/10 review from Far Out. In the review, it was described as “one of the finest albums of the year so far. The album covers a broad range of emotions and musical styles in a seemingly effortless blend of jazz, dub, classical, electro and alt-rock.” The new vinyl pressing comes with a gatefold sleeve containing two high-quality 180g LPs.
Available for purchase here for £24.94.
Wet Leg – Wet Leg
The girls from the Isle of Wight, Wet Leg, have brought something original to the table with their brand new eponymous debut LP. “I wanted to write fun songs, I didn’t want to indulge sad feelings too much, I wanted to write stuff that’s fun to listen to and fun to play,” Rhian Teasdale said of the debut. “But then, the sad seeps through, as well. Wet Leg was originally just supposed to be funny. As a woman, there’s so much put on you, in that your only value is how pretty or cool you look. But we want to be goofy and a little bit rude. We want to write songs that people can dance to. And we want people to have a good time, even if that might not possible all of the time.”
This Domino Records release is a must for any indie/post-punk lovers out there looking for something modern and intriguing to their collection. The LP comes with a free MP3 download code and a printed inner with liner notes and lyrics.
Available for purchase here for £22.99.
Brian Eno – FOREVERANDEVERNOMORE
Last month, Brian Eno, the legendary avant-garde artist, ambient pioneer and master producer, returned for his 22nd solo studio album, FOREVERANDEVERNOMORE. The remarkable ambient work marks the return of the 74-year-old’s vocals for the first time since 2005’s Another Day On Earth, as he issues a poignant warning for the future of humanity.
In a five-star review of the album, Far Out said: “Much like a musical scientist, Eno toys with new ideas and pushes the bounds of perceived possibility. [Beyond innovation, it’s] art [that] opens the door to feeling, permitting entry to darkness or light. Despite the album’s apocalyptic conceptual orientation, the tone is predominantly one of beauty as it portrays the natural world we seem to have turned our back on.”
Available for purchase here for £29.99.
Spiritualized – Everything Was Beautiful
Back in April, Spiritualized released their ninth studio album. The eclectic and vibrant spread of music within opens up creative lead Jason Pierce’s (J. Spaceman) mind for all to see. Pierce played 16 different instruments on Everything Was Beautiful and recorded it across 11 studios and at partly home during the various lockdowns.
In a glowing 8.9/10 review, Far Out described the album: “Everything Was Beautiful is, as any Spiritualized fan would expect, yet another kaleidoscopic journey through the psyche of J. Spaceman. As usual, he holds no emotions back and takes us on a cosmic journey through melancholy, anxiety and elation as he shares the next entry in his discographic diary.”
Available for purchase here for £19.94.
Belle and Sebastian – A Bit of Previous
With seven years having passed since the last Belle and Sebastian album – excluding 2019’s soundtrack for the Simon Bird film Days Of The Bagnold Summer – it was high time Glasgow’s finest indie group returned to the studio. Released back in May this year, A Bit of Previous brings new life and maturity to Belle and Sebastian’s trademark upbeat instrumentals and Stuart Murdoch’s ever-absorbing lyrical concepts.
The album is home to foot-tapping hits like ‘Unnecessary Drama’ and ‘Working Boy in New York City’ as well as some considered reflections on the modern world and political perversion, namely ‘If They’re Shooting At You’ and ‘Come On Home’.
Available for purchase here for £20.24.
Wunderhorse – Cub
After the dissolution of his first band Dead Pretties, London musician and actor Jacob Slater decided to begin a project of his own direction, Wunderhorse. Wunderhorse’s sound is a little lighter and more refined than Dead Pretties’s, and Slater has revealed that his style is heavily influenced by the likes of Radiohead and Neil Young.
Slater released the fantastic ‘Teal’, his first single under the new alias, in September 2021 and followed it up with four more singles in the run-up to the full debut album, Cub, which arrived back in September. He is currently on the road supporting Fontaines DC as he continues his meteoric rise.
Available for purchase here for £20.79.
Just Mustard – Heart Under
Heart Under, Irish band Just Mustard’s second album, is an unmitigated beauty and easily one of the best albums of the year so far. At every turn, this remarkable record reconfigures and stretches the ideas and ambition of a rock band and turns a year of lockdown and personal struggles into a breathtaking artistic statement.
The dark, atmospheric and industrial noise-rock sound comes as something unique, falling somewhere between Bauhaus and My Bloody Valentine. The album was released on May 27th and has been given rave reviews over the past few weeks as something truly original with a fine balance exploring a range of moods and themes over its 45 minutes.
Available for purchase here for £19.49.
Yeah Yeah Yeahs – Cool It Down [Opaque Yellow Vinyl]
Back in June, New York-based group Yeah Yeah Yeahs announced that they would be releasing a new album in autumn. The exciting news had fans giddy as they anticipated the band’s first album in nine years. In true New York City spirit, they have named the album Cool It Down after The Velvet Underground Loaded cut of the same name.
Cool It Down arrived at the end of September and certainly didn’t disappoint. In a 4.5/5 star review, Far Out said of the album: “Far from a dated outfit, re-emerging and trying to fit in—they seem to have flown the nest many years ago, and this huge record has been spat back from the edge of the universe, with all the highfalutin madness such an image entails. You simply can’t listen to it without being dragged towards such starry thoughts by the astronauts of bohemia.”
Available for purchase here for £22.12.
Florence + The Machine – Dance Fever [Amazon Exclusive Limited Edition]
Dance Fever was recorded predominately in London over the course of the pandemic in anticipation of the world’s reopening. It conjures up what Florence missed most in the midst of lockdown – clubs, dancing at festivals, being in the whirl of movement and togetherness – and the hope of reunions to come.
In an 8.8/10 review, Far Out said: “Dance Fever is sprinkled with magic. It’s a fairytale. A storybook. More than anything, it’s an album that feels complete. Welch leaves no stone unturned in the realm of musical yearning. She spends time delivering on the highs and the lows. Dance Fever is a record of love and patience, and it’s worth every moment it takes to listen.”