20 Tracks You Need To Hear This Week (18/6/2014)
Hands down the roughest track in this week’s selection – but, lets face it, that’s not too surprising given who wrote it – this Fat White Family album off-cut still has a certain charm to it. Lyrically it’s a cousin of their post-watershed, fucked up gem ‘Is It Raining In Your Mouth?’, concerning a pair of “terrible” hands that have no doubt done things we don’t even wanna start thinking about. Business as usual for London’s messiest, then.
Matt Wilkinson, New Music Editor
‘Have A Sad Cum’ is the drilling, abrasive zenith of Sacramento rap scrappers Death Grips’ latest surprise internet release, ‘Niggas On The Moon’. Powering to conclusion in a spasm of violently contorted Björk vocal samples, dub rumbles and broken-sounding electronics, it sounds like two copulating Transformers robots howling to orgasm. A nasty metaphor, but then again that’s MC Ride and co: nasty, noisy and, as this frantic four-minute explosion proves, utterly vital.
Al Horner, Assistant Editor, NME.COM
“1, 2, 3, don’t fuck with me/I’m sick and tired of thinking,” sings Caila Thompson-Hannant, aka Mozart’s Sister. ‘Enjoy’ is the first taste of new music from the former Miracle Fortress member since 2013’s ‘Hello’ EP. Skittering on staccato rhythms and swampy drum pads, there’s almost too much going on here, but it’s all tied together with wit, fun and emotion, demonstrating a new boldness that makes the Montreal musician one of the most exciting around.
Lucy Jones, Deputy Editor, NME.COM
With a chugging riff and big, anthemic chorus, Gerard Way’s solo debut is not exactly a million miles away from his days as leader of goth superstars My Chemical Romance. Those hoping for a radical reinvention may be disappointed then, but anyone looking to fill the MCR-shaped hole in their heart will lap up this pop-rock banger, especially when Way sings, “Do you miss me? Cos I miss you.”
David Renshaw, News Reporter
With Wimbledon around the corner, the sunnily dispositioned, Leeds-based, fuzz-pedal fans issue the second most topical sporting tie-in available this summer in ‘Tennis Court’. Evoking the sound of ‘90s slackerdom and the nonsense wordplay of that era’s iconic lyricists (Stephen Malkmus, Bob Pollard), they sing near-unintelligible lines like “I’m a tennis court with nothing in it”. In short: perfect fodder for slots at indie festivals Tramlines, Y Not and Cribs gigs this summer.
Dan Stubbs, News Editor
A bit like Batman and Robin reunited, SBTRKT and Sampha have come back together for this lush joint. Reassuringly the chemistry is just as alluring as it was on their previous collaborations like ‘Heatwave’ and ‘Hold On’. “Imagery stairs/and I’m here on the edge,” coos the London singer over a darting beat. Certainly whets the appetite for SBTRKT’s second album, due for release later this year.
Greg Cochrane, Editor, NME.COM
Jessie Ware had zero expectations for her debut album, 2012’s ‘Devotion’. But then all the doors opened leading to hook-ups with massive stars A$AP Rocky and Miguel. This divine, downtempo first taste from her soon-coming second album is the result of a chilled-out writing stint in New York with PMR label buddy and old pal Two Inch Punch, one half of production duo BenZel. The other half? Hitmaker Benny Blanco. That’s Jessie. Reaching for the stars but never far from her roots.
Eve Barlow, Deputy Editor
It had to happen – Summer Camp are soundtracking a teen movie. In fact, they’re soundtracking 200 of them. They’ve recorded 12 tracks for Charlie Lyne’s Beyond Clueless documentary about coming-of-age movies, and the first offering finds Elizabeth Sankey toasting tween love affairs between the “stone cold fox” and the “class president” over baggy beats, woozy shoegaze guitar and a piano vamp straight out of Katy Perry’s ‘Roar’. Give it snaps.
Matthew Horton, writer
Amidst chatter about what caused the departure of former La Roux collaborator Ben Langmaid, Elly Jackson has released a song touting a suggestive chorus. But as she repeatedly breathes “Didn’t know he was a tropical chancer”, you won’t be thinking about gossip. ‘Tropical Chancer’ bounces along with a beach bar-ready reggae motif and a backside-wobbling low end. Ahead of Jackson’s long-delayed second album, it’s a welcome flash of strictly musical intrigue.
Ben Homewood, writer
It’s time to rehabilitate twee. On the back of the swooning ‘Archie, Marry Me’, this Toronto girl and guy gang are making cardigans and hair slides sexy again. Like Belle & Sebastian and Camera Obscura before them, Alvvays have a sumptuous way with a giddy jangle and, on ‘Next Of Kin’, manage to make a song about a drowning boyfriend sound both sweet and seductive. “I lost his hand in the current,” trills Molly Rankin, innocently. Deadly.
Leonie Cooper, writer
Having written one of the greatest and most vicious songs about football tribalism ever in the sabre-toothed anthem ‘Theme From Sparta FC’, Mark E Smith’s World Cup offering is a surprisingly laidback affair. Backed by the duo Shuttleworth, rather than his own ferocious Fall, this Brazilian re-working is even more sun-kissed than the original release four years ago. Still, Smith’s angry question: “When will the inventors of the game get justice?” couldn’t be better timed given FIFA’s current rank venality.
Kevin EG Perry, writer
Welcome to 1997! This first suggestion of what a full Superfood album might sound like harks back to a simpler time. ‘Right On Satellite’ is as chirpy as a Supernaturals chorus and as bouncy as a Supergrass bassline, Sounding exactly – exactly – like Longpigs’ Crispian Hunt, frontman Dom Ganderton leads a big, shout-along chorus that goes ”Keep it real! Get high! You’re my satellite!” that’s every bit as whimsical as Bennet’s ‘Mum’s Gone To Iceland’, or Space’s ‘The Female Of The Species’, or anything else on Shine compilations 6 through 9.
JJ Dunning, writer
There’s a common – and misguided – notion that bands needn’t bother with decent flipsides anymore. Here’s emphatic proof why they should. The Wytches’ debut album ‘Annabel Dream Reader’ isn’t out till August 25, but before that, there’s a limited seven-inch release of ‘Wire Frame Mattress’ on July 7. This is the sinister-sounding and malevolent B-side, atmospherically not a million miles from The Cure’s ‘Killing An Arab’, which shows the Brighton-based trio must have songs to burn.
Andy Welch, writer
Santigold’s latest is part of Pepsi’s ‘Beats Of The Beautiful Game’ compilation – a gathering of musical minds including Janelle Monáe and Timbaland designed, essentially, to massively cash in on the World Cup. ‘Kicking Down Doors’’ football references thankfully extend only to the verb in its title. Instead, Santi’s offering is all repeated beats and electro squelches courtesy of Skrillex-affiliated producer Yogi, adorned with her almost unintelligible, rap-style vocal about something to do with a “posterior”.
Lisa Wright, writer
With her debut single ‘No Strings’, last summer Chlöe Howl leapt into the spotlight with straight-up, gritty pop. Evoking memories of a teenage Lily Allen combining frilly dresses with trainers and plenty of attitude, Howl’s latest track suggests you’d be ill-advised to make her “mad as hell” like the cheating swine who’s at the centre of the lyrics. He might have been a disappointment, but it looks like Chlöe’s debut album won’t be.
Emma Snook, writer
Seems it’s not just a producer that Kiwi duo Broods share with Lorde. Latest single ‘Mother & Father’ possesses the same apprehension of aging, singer Georgia Nott lamenting “Ever since I left my mother, it’s much harder to know/How to make my own life here, how to make my own home.” Backed up by glistening synths and clipped beats courtesy of her older brother Caleb, it’s a beautifully sad return after the siblings’ debut EP.
Rhian Daly, Assistant Reviews Editor
Rocky’s here, Ferg’s here, Mobbers is here, Nast’s here, Twelvyy’s here, and yeah, they’ve got themselves “hella hoes”. You know how it is. Aside from the unfortunate title and questionable subject matter, though, this tune is a fine example of the bladder-tickling menace this New York rap crew are capable of creating with a few gun shots, a bit o’ bass, a xylophone-made-of-bones jangle and some vocal ticks from Mob members that flit between Neanderthal grunts and unhinged howls.
Tom Howard, Assistant Editor
The US indie supergroup (featuring Neko Case, singer-songwriter AC Newman, Destroyer’s Dan Bejar and more) return with their sixth studio album, ‘Brill Bruisers’, in August. Newman describes it as a “celebration record” and it should be an exuberant listen if the title track is any indicator of what else it has in store – a three minute, joyous roll through rousing indie-pop, full of “bah-bah-bahs” and a whole load of heart.
Rhian Daly, Assistant Reviews Editor
Dan Michaelson has labelled his new single a “misleadingly upbeat” introduction to his next album, ‘Distance’. Over brisk Americana (think Real Estate with rougher edges), Michaelson sings about the anticipation he shares with his lover, in his low-hanging grey cloud of a voice. First, it’s for the chorus in the song they got married to, then the needle skipping on the record… and then the moment their love fades to nothing. Relatively upbeat then, but indisputably lovely.
Laura Snapes, Features Editor
This is the first track from the duo’s forthcoming “anti-national cabaret” – a collaboration with art project Ful which focuses on Sweden and the EU’s immigration policies before an election there this year. Accompanied by a video showcasing a bad-ass dance routine known as the “political Macarena”, it’s a lesson in how to bring politics into art with a smooth R&B bassline and rik-a-tik percussion that’s a natural post-cursor to ‘Shaking The Habitual”s bouncing ‘We Share Our Mothers’ Health’.
Jenny Stevens, Deputy News Editor