[19] Owen Pallett, ‘Lewis Takes Off His Shirt’

Owen Pallett

That Owen Pallett – he can arrange my strings anytime. No, seriously, he’s really good. And when I eventually get around to committing my baroque pop masterpiece to acetate (the kids still use acetate, right?), it’ll be adorned with all the soaring beauty and heroic imagery of ‘Lewis Takes Off His Shirt’, starting off shy and polite before stripping off to bare its defiance. It will occupy that fey but assured territory between Miracle Fortress and Patrick Wolf, breathless with romance, stubborn in its grace. It will so.

And will Junior join our chamber orchestra? Her thumbs-up says, “Sign me up”; her mouth says, “It’s good. It sounds like violins”; her funnybone just shakes at the title.

[16] Siobhan Donaghy, ‘So You Say’

One of an unending line of “new Kate Bush”es – Tori Amos, Bat For Lashes, erm, Patrick Wolf, Florence + The Machine, Marina and the bloody Diamonds, for all I know – Siobhan Donaghy fits the bill with a pop music that’s free, experimental, ostensibly commercial (albeit without the essential hits) and miles away from her unhappy work with Sugababes. ‘So You Say’ is forensically beautiful in every detail, and for that it’s quite remarkable.

Junior says: “It’s very quiet,” before the huge chorus swells forth, demonstrating a rather flowery take on the Pixies’ quiet-loud-quiet ethos. “I like the singing.”

Best bit: The da-da-ing and doo-doo-ing of the dizzily drifting middle section.