From Dry Cleaning to Girl In Red: The 10 best records available at Rough Trade this month

Here at Far Out, we are teaming up with the legendary Rough Trade to give you a chance to win ten of the hottest records released throughout April, all on precious vinyl.

Rough Trade began as a humble record shop down Kensington Park Road, a location that founder Geoff Travis opened in 1976. Over 40 years since their doors first opened, Rough Trade has grown a reputation for being one of the holiest places of worship for any devout music lover.

Rough Trade champion creativity and passion in equal measure; nothing else matters. This mantra has served the store well and created an unparalleled reputation. Rough Trade’s flagship store down on East London’s Brick Lane is a pilgrimage for musos, with musical magic oozing out of every pore of the building.

In addition to the two stores in London, they expanded Stateside in 2012 when they opened their doors in Williamsburg for Rough Trade New York. Two years later, the iconic store opened up another store in the UK in the Lace Market area of Nottingham, solidifying their presence within the alternative music industry.

In a new partnership with Rough Trade, Far Out will be giving one of our lucky readers the chance to win ten records hand-selected by the store that have been released over the last month.

Let’s take a look at what could be yours then, shall we?

April’s 10 best Rough Trade albums:

Tony Allen – There Is No End

Tony Allen sadly left us in 2020 and was once famously declared by Brian Eno as “perhaps the greatest drummer who has ever lived”. There Is No End is a posthumous album that shows that Allen was an artist who stayed progressive right until the end.

The LP features guest appearances from a star-studded cast that includes Skepta, Sampa The Great, Lava La Rue, Danny Brown and Damon Albarn. Producer Vincent Taeger remarked that his friend and mentor, Allen, “Was a teacher without speaking… a drummer and a guardian, with a great artistic vision, and that vision filled the songs even after he had left us.” 

Allen passed on these teachings throughout his music, and that’s what he does by bringing in younger generations on to There Is No End, which is a poetic way to sign off his legacy.

Available here.

Flock Of Dimes – Head Of Roses

Head Of Roses is the second full-length effort from Flock Of Roses, AKA Jenn Wasner, who continues to showcase her extraordinary songwriting capabilities on her sophomore record. The album covers themes of heartbreak and sees Wasner pour her heart on the line by looking at this well-travelled topic from a delicately nuanced perspective.

Wasner commented: “Part of the journey for me has been learning to take responsibility for the parts of things that are mine, even when I’m in a lot of pain through some behavior or action of someone else. If I’m expecting to be forgiven for the things I’ve done and the choices I’ve made and the mistakes that I’ve made, it would be incredibly cowardly and hypocritical to not also do the work that’s required to forgive others the pain they caused me.”

Available here.

Alfa Mist – Bring Backs

Jazz music has made a much-appreciated renaissance over the last few years, with the likes of Sons Of Kemet and Ezra Collective forefronting the return, along with Alfa Mist. The new album is Mist’s most ambitious to date, and the record also marks his first release for the label Anti. Additionally, the vinyl that you could win is exclusive to Rough Trade and isn’t available anywhere else in the world.

The East London producer, self-taught pianist and rapper is a true enigmatic talent. He first arrived in people’s consciousness in 2017 with his second album, Antiphon. Since then, Mist has released 2019’s critically acclaimed Structuralism, 2020’s Epoch, before sharing his fifth album, Bring Backs, last month.

Available here.

Girl In Red – If I Could Make It Go Quiet

Next up is the highly-anticipated debut album by Norway’s Gen-Z bedroom pop superstar, Girl In Red, AKA Marie Ulven. Over the last few years, Ulven has built up an immense following along with hundreds of millions of streams in the process, which has made her one of the most exciting new artists on the planet.

Commenting on the album, Ulven said: “If I Could Make It Go Quiet is an attempt to learn what it’s like to be human; to deal with the scariest parts of myself; to live with the pain of knowing I’m only flesh and bones; to be angry, broken and unforgiving yet still able to wear my heart on my sleeve; I’m shedding light on the darkest parts of my mind and I’m letting everyone in; if I could make it go quiet is me simply trying to understand what the fuck is going on.”

Available here.

Telex – This Is Telex

This Is Telex is a compilation record from the Belgium trio, which collates 14 tracks from the innovative group throughout their dynamic career. Tracks on the album range from their early days when they formed in 1978 to their final album in 2006.

This compilation includes their hit single ‘Moskow Diskow’ and their Eurovision Song Contest entry aptly called ‘Euro-vision’. The group represented Belgium in 1980 and somehow only racked up ten points, achieving 19th place, which says everything there is to say about the dismal tastes of Eurovision viewers.

After a glittering career, Telex decided that they couldn’t make music without their founding member Marc Moulin, who passed away in 2008. If you’re not familiar with the trio, then This Is Telex is the perfect point of entry.

Available here.

The Future Sound Of London – Dead Cities

To mark 25 years since the electronic group, The Future Sound Of London released Dead Cities, they have reissued the album on vinyl, and it could be yours. The album has previously never been pressed on vinyl, and finally, this has changed. 

The album is the most successful by the group, who first formed in 1980 and are still going strong today. The album is littered with samples, including snippets of Run DMC appearing on the tracks ‘Herd Killing’ and ‘We Have Explosive (Herd Killing mix)’. Meanwhile, the album’s title track features a vocal sample at the beginning of Laurence Fishburne from the film Deep Cover.

Available here.

Jordan Rakei – Late Night Tales

New Zealand-born, Australian raised, London based Jordan Rakei has just shared his DJ mix for the Late Night Tales series. Previous artists to take part in the series include illustrious names like Franz Ferdinand, Fatboy Slim, Matt Helders, Bonobo, BadBadNotGood and Rakei is the latest artist to add his name to the list.

The 28-year-old has embedded himself into the London scene over the last few years, collaborating with Loyle Carner, Kaya Thomas-Dyke and more. On Late Night Tales, Rakei includes cuts from Connan Mockasin, Alfa Mist, Puma Blue and C Duncan. He also delivers covers of Radiohead and Jeff Buckley, plus a brand new original track.

Available here.

Leon Vynehall – Rare Forever

Anyone who’s been fortunate enough to witness a DJ set from Leon Vynehall is aware of the sheer talent he possesses, and that brilliance translates over to Rare Forever. Although Vynehall is the king of the dancefloor, this broad-spanning album has much more to it than that and sees him take inference from areas like post-punk or ambience, which he crams under one roof on Rare Forever.

The album follows on from 2018’s critically acclaimed debut; Nothing Is Still. It includes the triumphant single, ‘An Exhale’, which Vynehall described as a relief. A moment of joyful release. This is an optimistic song.” The optimism mentioned by Vynehall isn’t exclusive to the track and is scattered by the producer all across his sophomore album.

Available here.

Beverly Glenn-Copeland – Keyboard Fantasies

To commemorate 35 years since the legendary singer, composer, and transgender activist Beverly Glenn-Copeland released her most seminal work, Keyboard Fantasies — it has been reissued on vinyl.

The album was slept on at the time after being self-released by Glenn-Copeland on cassette in 1986. In 2015, the record caught attention after a Japanese collector contacted the artist and asked for copies to sell. After they went on sale, they sold out instantly and quickly; labels were chasing up Glenn-Copeland to release the record on a mass scale.

After more than three decades, Keyboard Fantasies is finally receiving the attention that it duly deserves. The reissue features alternative artwork and liner notes from Robyn — one of many artists who labels Glenn-Copeland as an inspiration.

Available here.

Dry Cleaning – New Long Leg

Few albums have got people talking, like Dry Cleaning’s immaculate debut album, New Long Leg. The group formed by friends Tom Dowse, Nick Buxton and Lewis Maynard after a karaoke party in 2017, but it wasn’t until they recruited Florence Shaw six months later that everything clicked.

Even though Shaw had no previous musical experience, she provided them with the crucial final piece of the jigsaw that they had been crying out for and created a distinct sound. The fact that Shaw is about as far from an archetypal singer as possible only makes Dry Cleaning shine brighter on New Long Leg as they travel through themes like love, anger, revenge, and survival in a way only they can. On New Long Leg, Shaw says: “The title is ambiguous; a new long leg could be an expensive present or a growth or a table repair.”

Available here.

Win the records by entering the competition, below.