20 Tracks You Need To Hear This Week (9/7/2014)
Craig Nicholls might be the only original member of The Vines remaining but, as the Australian band prepare to release their sixth album, ‘Wicked Nature’, they sound just as exciting as ever. ‘Out The Loop’, the first teaser from it, proves that in just one minute and 23 seconds of thrashy guitars and taunting jeers: “//Out of the loop again/You’re gonna lose a friend//”. That ‘Wicked Nature’ is set to be a 22-track double album means there should be plenty more gold like this coming our way soon.
Rhian Daly, Assistant Reviews Editor
Nile Rodgers’ renewed success was truly one of the most heartening stories of 2013, with ‘Get Lucky’, wonderful sets from Chic and, most importantly, a clean bill of heath after a battle with cancer. ‘Do What You Wanna Do’ is his first solo single in years, and it sounds made to soundtrack fizzy pop adverts and pool parties in Ibiza. A real summer jam.
Greg Cochrane, Editor, NME.COM
“//The music brings me right back//”, sings rising star ETML (aka Elliott Marshall) on a stirring Sarf London hook-up with the neo-disco veterans, and that’s exactly what the latest track from the Jaxx’s imminent seventh album ‘Junto’ does. ‘Never Say Never’ is a grab bag of classic garage tropes – deep rolling piano, cavernous bass, cut-up soul vocals – that doesn’t so much show Disclosure how it’s done as pitch right into their joyous party.
Matthew Horton, writer
First they get Miley on board, then they go all ‘Exile On Main St’ on us and ditch their luscious, rickety beats for some all-out rattling rock’n’roll on this stomper of a track. It’s all fidgety guitar rumbles and honky-tonk jams, and the lusty lyrics set in speakeasies are evidence that their time spent touring the US has had more than a passing influence on their new material.
Jenny Stevens, Deputy News Editor
Insanity’s been a core part of Lil Wayne’s rap persona for years, boasting about how “//loco//” he is. The line between persona and reality has become a little bit blurred of late, however: last year, following increasingly erratic behaviour, Wayne suffered life-threatening seizures, possibly as a result of his cough syrup habit. ‘Krazy’ is brilliant but hard to enjoy; its dark, bustling beat and schizophrenic rhymes are the sound of a man poised precariously on the brink.
Al Horner, Assistant Editor, NME.COM
In September last year Justin Vernon said he was “unsure” about the future of his Bon Iver project because he doesn’t “really write songs any more”. It turns out that all he really needed was a new Zach Braff film. ‘Heavenly Father’ features on Braff’s Kickstarter-controversial //Wish I Was Here// and sees Vernon singing about being “//a known coward//” in a trippy but sweet ode to his dad, complete with an electronic choir.
David Renshaw, News Reporter
Laid down in Ryan’s very own Pax Am studio in Hollywood, ‘Gimme Something Good’ couldn’t be more indebted to sun-dappled, whiskey-washed Los Angeles AOR if it tried. Boasting a moody and mean Tom Petty-style intro and a chorus worthy of Fleetwood Mac at the height of their dumping and shagging and then dumping each other again era, it bodes well for his 14th – 14th! – album, ‘Ryan Adams’, due out on September 8.
Leonie Cooper, writer
For fans of Jessie Ware, Banks, SBTRKT and more, here’s the latest discovery you must log on to SoundCloud and listen to right this very second. I’ll be honest – I don’t know //anything// about Londoner Billie Black other than what’s essential: she’s clearly another future-thinking ‘90s R&B aficionado; she obviously wants to continue pushing the genre forwards via slinky synths and minimal electro; and these are both things that she’s ace at. Go discover it now.
Eve Barlow, Deputy Editor
Spoon have had super poppy moments before – most notably 2007’s ‘The Underdog’, which remains their biggest hit – and ‘Do You’ is another. It’s all in the chorus, which waits a mere 47 seconds to kick in: “//Do you wanna get understood?/Do you want one thing or are you looking for sainthood?/Do you run when it’s just getting good?//” Delivered by singer Britt Daniels, it’s an urgent demand to take a look at how you’re living this goddamn life of yours.
Tom Howard, Assistant Editor
“//I taste the fire of the sun//”, sings Ryan Rousseau on Destruction Unit’s first new song since 2013’s ‘Deep Trip’ LP. Seconds later, droning guitars and firecracker drums explode around his wretched vocals. Recorded for the Adult Swim Singles series, ‘Dust’ is an avalanche of white-hot psychedelic noise. As the Arizona stoners sweat through its three wailing and thundering minutes, you’ll taste the fire of the sun too.
Ben Homewood, writer
One of a new series of seven-inch singles to come from the New Jersey punks ahead of the follow-up to 2012’s ‘Local Business’, ‘Stranded (On My Own)’ was announced in an epic two-hour video by frontman Patrick Stickles. The track itself is somewhat briefer. A dizzy bosh-about, it bounces along with a hyper Bruce Springsteen-if-he-were-in-the-Descendents vibe. “//Let’s rock!//” it starts, as Stickles spits his way through garage riffs and hardcore clatters.
Leonie Cooper, writer
Masked Scandinavian psychedelic fusion band Goat follow up their 2012 debut with ‘Commune’, due for release on Sub Pop in autumn. ‘Hide From The Sun’ is the first glimpse of it, full of fevered tribal percussion and flailing afrobeat rhythms and doused in a cauldron of face-melting sitar riffs. It’s a track that sounds almost possessed, a blinding call to worship at the feet of the madcap musicians.
James Bentley, writer
While estranged bassist Peter Hook announced plans to play 1985’s ‘Low Life’ and 1986’s ‘Brotherhood’ albums live with his band The Light, the rest of New Order looked to the future, unveiling this brand new, dark-edged, beat-driven track at a Chicago gig on July 1. “We have to write some new songs to keep this a viable band,” frontman Bernard Sumner told the crowd, pointedly.
Dan Stubbs, News Editor
Jack White played this at Dublin’s Royal Hospital Kilmainham before his Glastonbury appearance. Never one to shy away from cover versions or teaming up with other musicians, he called on support band The Kills – featuring Dead Weather bandmate Alison Mosshart – to run through this standard made famous by Lead Belly’s 1933 recording. Bosses at the venue pulled the plug on the duet on the night, which only adds to the jubilant after-hours hoedown vibe.
Andy Welch, writer
Since ‘Call You Out’ and ‘(H)ours’ went online a few months ago, cravings for a new dose of Juce have been widespread. ‘Burning Up’ sees the band – three Londoners called Chalin, Georgia and Cherish – combine blazing disco, house and funk with shimmying Nile Rodgers-esque guitar bursts. It’s a zesty summer smash that could well be 2014’s ‘White Noise’ and includes perhaps the most soulful middle-eight of the year so far.
Lucy Jones, Deputy Editor, NME.COM
Gwilym Gold’s last foray was to create his own musical format, Bronze, which subtly transformed his album ‘Tender Metal’ every time you listened to it. His return this time round is slightly less ambitious but no less sublime. Written while working on an exhibition at the White Cube gallery, ‘Muscle’ is a dark and murky amble through solemn piano stabs, tense, clipped beats and Gold’s observation “//Now that you’ve seen it all/Still growing//”. Gloomy and gorgeous.
Rhian Daly, Assistant Reviews Editor
After releasing an excellent mini-album earlier in the year, Robyn has been touring with Röyksopp, playing together and doing solo performances. Robyn’s been using the opportunity to perform new material – songs that will no doubt end up on her next album. ‘Set Me Free’ was posted online via fan-shot live footage and it’s a belter – a jacking dance track caught somewhere between euphoria and misery, like all good pop songs.
Phil Hebblethwaite, writer
Sadly not a comment on Prince George by David Icke, ‘Lizard Baby’ is in fact the latest cut from Pulled Apart By Horses’ third LP, ‘Blood’. The Leeds throat-shredders are in fine form, grabbing attention with a sludgy riff and dank, nasty lyrics from frontman Tom Hudson. “//Chew it all up, spit it right back//” he barks, like a man on the edge of insanity. Bring on the album.
David Renshaw, News Reporter
An acronym for ‘loose as fuck’, Kiwi brother/sister duo Broods’ latest is – presumably – an ode to getting merry with your pals rather than a thumbs-up to sexual promiscuity (but whatever floats your boat, man). Fizzing synths abound under Georgia Notts’ twinkle-eyed tales of youthful vim, providing a logical successor to the brand of credible pop made by fellow New Zealanders The Naked and Famous’. Lorde approves, so success is surely but a moment away.
Lisa Wright, writer
Few people sing about love like Sam Cook-Parrott of Philly’s shmabling power-poppers Radiator Hospital – he has a way of tangling his adenoidal vocals into a scramble of love and fear that makes his crush-songs even more charming. Last week he released a new Bandcamp album, ‘Torch Songs’ (featuring Swearin’/Waxahatchee members Allison and Katie Crutchfield). It’s hard to pick a favourite track, but I love ‘Cut Your Bangs’, a melancholy jam about an errant friend who lies about “the small stuff”.
Laura Snapes, Features Editor