Parquet Courts and nine more tracks to hear this week
Parquet Courts – ‘Smart Aleck Kid’
What can you get done in one minute and six seconds? I mean, really? You could listen to everything Ben Howard has to say for himself, or maybe do the ‘Harlem Shake’ twice. Take That could fall in love (with six seconds to spare) as well. However, a far better use of your 66 seconds would be to stick on this new Parquet Courts track. With its ranty, shouty vocals and wirey riff it isn’t going to do anything to divert those Fall comparisons, but nevertheless, ‘Smart Aleck Kid’ reaffirms the belief that these New Yorkers are one of the best new bands coming out of the US right now. Frontman Andrew Savage charges through the track like he’s reading from a to-do list he hasn’t got time to finish. “All it’s going to take is a word to legal” sings Savage on the chorus, “from the smart aleck kid!” All the while, Austin Brown’s guitar flips from finger blurring riffs to the same thrashing, heart-swelling moments of noise that illuminate Parquet Courts debut album ‘Light Up Gold’, released officially in the UK on April 15. One comment on SoundCloud sums it all up perfectly, saying “Probably the best 66 seconds of proper rock and word vomit.” A little less of the ‘Probably’, please, because vomit has never sounded this good.
Rustie – ‘Slasherr’
“BOOM!!!!” is the only thing you’ll think as this new banger from Scottish producer Rustie confuses your brain and forces your head into a state of uncontrollable bouncing. In ‘Slasherr’, the man responsible for ‘Glass Swords’ – one of the most innovative dance records of recent memory – gets as heavy as a Glasgow Kiss.
Smith Westerns – ‘Varsity’
“[i]I know it’s hard to be alone[/i]”, coos Cullen Omori – but how can he feel alone if he’s got the company of this fluffy kitten of a single? It’s the kind of wafty, blissed-out West Coast dream pop that’s the aural equivalent of getting a tantric massage and your chakras fondled on Venice Beach in 1968. By, um, an indie rock band from Chicago.
Danny Brown – ‘#HottestMC’
On which Danny Brown takes down the MTV Hottest MCs list (who says ‘MC’ anyway these days?). Produced by New York rising star Harry Fraud, it rides on a medieval synth line and lolling drums. His over-enunciated SpongeBob voice seems heavier, older and harder, but still as hot as hell.
Milk Music – ‘Cruising With God’
You know that roadtrip you’re taking across the country this summer in a fast car with no top and the boot full of beer and powerful hallucinogenic drugs? I need to tell you two things: put this high-powered, Dinosaur Jr-flavoured slacker scuzz on the stereo, and always, always wear a seatbelt.
Kevin EG Perry
Hyetal – ‘Northwest Passage’
The always on-it True Panther Sounds (they’ve previously released King Krule, Girls and Unknown Mortal Orchestra) strike gold again by releasing the second album from Bristolian Hyetal. On this first cut, David Corney sings like an electro-angel as drums hammer and colossal synths build. Perfect for people yearning for a second ‘Drive’ soundtrack. Emelie Joy
Iggy And The Stooges – ‘Burn’
It’s been four years since James Williamson rejoined The Stooges, and it’s taken that long for us to hear his gutter-rock guitar genius in full flow. ‘Burn’ is wild and sprawling and all of the squawks have been worth the wait. “A real fucking group, who make fucking records,” Iggy said about the band recently. Amen to that.
Surfer Blood – ‘Demon Dance’
Warm, scuffed and cosy as a hoody with thumbholes, the riffs, harmonies and chops of Surfer Blood’s Weezerish power-pop is much more heavenly than hellish on this second teaser from new album ‘Pythons’. As singer John Paul Pitts puts it, “Like a Pentecostal choir on Sunday, I can suck the venom out of your bones.”
Austra – ‘Home’
The voice of Austra frontwoman Katie Stelmanis is a low-key antidote to Florence Welch at her most warbly. This, the first track from the Toronto trio’s second album ‘Olympia’, is spooky heartache pop that just about gets away with squeezing a load of Enya panpiping into its piano and drums lollop.
MIA – ‘Matangi Mix’
Six minutes of hyped up hollers, samples and lines including “I’m thankful for my body because it’s a fucking banger, I’m thankful for my mouth because it’s a fucking screamer”. When fourth album ‘Matangi’ drops (it’s currently slated for April 15), expect it to make a huge entrance.