Dark horse

Straw - Keepsakes (Columbia)

Straw's debut album is a genuine dark horse. Imagine an exuberant Radiohead who combine great hooks, jangling pop and some genuine heart rending. ****


The Offspring - Original Prankster (Sony)

Loud and brash new single with a Beastie Boys-style vocal. I love it. ****


Gatecrasher - National Anthems (Sony)

Featuring the biggest and best dance tracks of the last year including Spiller and Planet Perfecto it can't fail, can it? ****


Wu-Tang Clan - Gravel Pit (Sony)

Funky little hip-hop number full of attitude. ***