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Playlist reviews: The Soundtrack to April 2012

Friday, April 6th, 2012 at 1:29am by Will Moreland | Comments

"Ladies and gentlemen," begins Phil Wilce, in the typically pithy intro to his latest playlist, "for a small donation I can provide access to the most powerful 50 tracks of today." He's talking, of course, about the newest edition to his The Soundtrack to... series.

Here's a selection of our favourite tunes from the king of the monthly mixtapes...

The must-hear track in April – and perhaps the best release of the year so far – comes from Plan B, with ill Manors. Over frenetic, demented strings, Ben Drew unleashes a devastating diatribe against the demonisation of Britain's disenfranchised and malcontent youth. Simply stunning.

We've already given Alabama Shakes a shout on the blog recently, but Hold On is so fist-pumpingly euphoric, and we've waited so long for it to be available on Spotify, we couldn't help but give it another nod – all hooky, bluesy riffs and infectious southern soul drawl, courtesy of one of the most captivating frontwomen around, Brittany Howard. We can't wait for the debut album from this lot. 

The fourth track from the Death Ramps – aka Arctic Monkeys – is a peach. You and I is built on big rock'n'roll riffs and wigouts – a la Queens of the Stoneage – and features the always amazing Richard Hawley, lending his enigmatic baritone to this fevered B-side to Black Treacle

Also worth a listen this month, tracks from Django Django, Burial, Arctic Monkeys, Jack White and the Phenomenal Handclap Band. Check them all out below:

The Soundtrack to April 2012

Many thanks to Phil Wilce for another cracking mixtape. We're looking forward to next month's already. 

Long live the mixtape!