Fight Like Apes and the Mystery of the Golden Medallion
Why you should care: shouty beepy wall-of-noise fun with a surprising number of layers, but usually coming at you at hundreds of miles an hour, bursting out of an impressive set of female lungs.
Sugar-coated razor blades made from samples, synth, melody, screaming, lyrics that steal inspiration from everywhere, and production of an excellence that bands this far out of leftfield don't usually get. I discovered last year via Warren Ellis and rediscovered just as they put an album out, which turns out to have been very good timing.
Phonogram Vol. 2: The Singles Club
Why you should care: people are trying to do something different to most comics and the result isn't shit.
An indie comic, so be patient waiting for the individual issues to come out and try to support the creators by not waiting for the trade. #1 is out already. Phonogram: The Singles Club is about music being magic when you're in the moment, spun with some more fantastical elements, and follows up the Britpop-themed first volume with a string of semi-standalone stories that will knit together into something that promises to fascinate. I really should get around to a full retrospective review of the first volume.
Pagan Wanderer Lu - Fight My Battles For Me
Why you should care: the highs of this independent artist are very high indeed.
Finally, "(You & Me and) Winston Churchill" makes it onto a proper album, Andy Regan's first after a long string of CD-R releases and some pressed singles. A little hit-and-miss for me in terms of musical output, but I really enjoyed his The Independent Scrutineer EP (review here) and a fair spread of the demos that've been up for download over the last few years. Lyrical inventiveness plus fairly lo-fi and organic instrumentals, though he's getting into more polished production these days.