2 albums out today

And probably the most eagerly anticipated two of the year from my point of view.

But I’m still away on Robben Island, so here’s what other people have had to say about them:

The Car – Arctic Monkeys

The Car is Arctic Monkeys’ weirdest album, and it’s their most overtly melancholy work too — like James Bond themes for a terminally depressed spy. It’s certainly the saddest-sounding music Turner’s put his name to since the dusky tunes he contributed to the soundtrack for Richard Ayoade’s Submarine in 2010.

and (of course) True North – a-ha

“There’s no audience, it’s us, the Arctic Philharmonic Orchestra and a live band,” he expands. “But what we wanted to realise was an audio-visual experience where the music was at the centre. It seemed a nice change from what we’d done before.”

Alongside the 12-track album, therefore, came a raw and powerful film directed by long-time a-ha collaborator Stian Andersen, shot in Bodo, 90km above the Arctic Circle in the north of Norway – already screened and positively received in selected cinemas around the world last month.

I have a Stian Andersen print on my wall just behind me (I’m writing this on Tuesday), bought from the man himself, and featuring yours truly at a recent a-ha concert.

Lifestyles of the rich and the famous, hey?