1. Marina And The Diamonds – ‘Radioactive’
It’s a difficult trick, using superficiality as a Trojan horse for big ideas; like the old fairytales in which the awkward stepdaughter is challenged to use a sieve as a water-vessel. Born heroine Marina Diamandis, though, gamely plugs those holes with eyelash glue and hurls a colanderful of concept right in your face. The synth-noir ‘Fear And Loathing’, debuted last week, introduced Marina’s newly conceived anti-heroine Electra Heart; in this second instalment of her story, this dangerous platinum blonde goes on the run with her dissolute US fantasies in the spirit of all the best underbelly-of-the-American Dream films, from Badlands to Wild At Heart, from Paris, Texas to True Romance.
And the song? Produced by Rihanna collaborators Stargate, it’s could be as massive as ‘Only Girl (In The World)’, inhabiting the same world of synth-stabbed, silvery euphoria. “When you’re around me I’m radioactive… my blood is radioactive”, moans Marina. Only she, though, would follow up such a perfectly vapid sentiment with “I’m ready to be let down/Now I’m heading for a meltdown”. Some will think she’s selling out; they better think on.
‘Radioactive’ hits the internet on Monday. Meanwhile, Watch ‘Fear And Loathing’ Part 1 here
Duncan Gillespie, writer
2. Justice – ‘Audio, Video, Disco’
A new Justice song! Without Ali Love! Or a shoeshop tie-in kerching! Spelling it out for you, just like ‘DANCE’ (ie the chorus goes, “Audio, audio, audio, video, disco”), the follow-up to ‘Civilization’ is a galloping filly of electro that looks good, sounds good, and will no doubt feel A-OK down the old discotheque.
Listen/ Watch Here
Tim Chester, Deputy Editor, NME.COM
3. Oh Land – ‘White Nights’
Nanna Fabricus delves into her former life as a ballet student in the video for new single ‘White Nights’, donning her dancing shoes to cavort in a forest one second and some bizzaro Tron-like universe the next. “There’s a restlessness in me/Keeps me up into the dawn” she pouts like a bratty child: desperate to show off, but adorable nonetheless.
Ben Hewitt, writer
4. Little Dragon – ‘Gypsy Woman’ (La Da Dee)
Hearing Yukimi Nagano role-play on this cover of Crystal Waters’ 1991 club classic is joyous. She wraps her substantial pipes around the track like a karaoke pro. And if that wasn’t enough ‘old school house diva’ for you, she ad-libs parts of Robin S’ ‘Show Me Love’ at the end too.
Priya Elan, Assistant Editor, NME.COM
5. Venus In Furs – ‘Chances’
The debut single from this London trio of über-babes comes across as a heady mix of Ladyhawke, Donna Summer and Kylie Minogue. Now imagine those influences together on the dancefloor, each getting over a rubbish ex-boyfriend. Could it be more PERFECT?
Ailbhe Malone, writer
6. Andy Burrows – ‘If I Had A Heart’
Honestly? This won’t change the world. It’s decent – sleazy slap-bass and drum-pads underpin a sweet-but-sluggish vocal and, as ever with Burrows, it’s insanely catchy. But the real fun happens when ex-bezzie Johnny Borrell pops into your head and you picture that ’tache. The campaign for its return starts here.
Mike Williams, Deputy Editor
7. Bjork – ‘Virus’
Truth be told, ‘Virus’ isn’t the return to the dancefloor plenty were expecting from Björk, but neither is it a return to the coffee table. Instead, enchanted by wind chimes, undercut with a sense of dread, it maps out new territory entirely, while still bringing out that classic Björkian feeling of warm bafflement.
Dan Martin, Acting News Editor
8. Ganglians – ‘Drop The Act’
“This is a sad sad sooooong, for all you sad sad peep-oooool”, sing Ganglians over, er, probably the most happy-clappy, sun-through-the-clouds chorus we’ve heard all year. Looks like someone’s doing upbeat surf-pop with drowning-cat dour lyrics just as well as The Drums.
Jamie Fullerton, Features Editor
9. Warpaint – ‘Billie Holiday’ (new version)
It seems so long ago that the siren charms and sultry slow burn of the ‘Exquisite Corpse’ EP first snuck its silky fingers around our hearts. But it would be cruel to keep this song for early adopters only, and a special edition of ‘The Fool’ due out next month will include this new, fuller version.
Emily Mackay, Reviews Editor
10. Miles Kane And The Death Ramps – ‘Little Illusion Machine’ (Wirral Riddler)
No bad thing, but this NME.COM exclusive sounds exactly like 2007’s overlooked glam-psych hero Pop Levi. Synthetic Bolan effects on the vocals, chunky riff… Um, do I need to mention The Death Ramps is the Monkeys? The fact that it’s the B-side to ‘The Hellcat Spangled Shalalala’ probably gave it away.
Hamish MacBain, Assistant Editor
This article appears in the August 20th issue of NME