1. Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds – ‘If I Had A Gun’
Try as little brother might to turn the whole post-Oasis experience into a puffed-chest pantomime, the story on Gallagher Sr’s side seems to be all one of freedom and ease at long last. Rather than the bullish threat the title might suggest, Noel only wants to “shoot a hole into the sun and love would burn this city down for you”. There’s a relaxed relief that you can hear in his solo work so far. Rather than desperation to prove himself as a new man,
Noel’s now got the time and space to work up songs that have been around for some time, such as this graceful beauty.
It first appeared in these pages back in April 2009 under the guise “Oasis – The New One”, recorded by a Taiwanese fan during soundcheck for a Taipei gig. “It finds Noel’s vocal at its most heartbreaking and vulnerable,” we noted. “That feeling? That’s your soul being dug out.” Of course, one fateful guitar lob meant that it was never going to make it into Oasis’ oeuvre, but we’re glad that it saw the light of day, its delicate charms beefed up into a thing of melancholic, chest-cramping gorgeousness. The next one’s disco, apparently – now that is cutting loose.
Duncan Gillespie, Writer
2. HEALTH – ‘Goth Star’
Back in 2009, Denver’s Pictureplane made a cult classic out of this cut, shunted and twisted torturing of Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Seven Wonders’. One-time tourmates and full-time noise babes HEALTH cement their amazing rework skillz with this smoother, weightier take, singer Jake Duzsik crooning unsettlingly “All we had we lost/Rest your bones, your blood”.
Emily Mackay, Reviews Editor
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3. Ryan Adams – ‘Lucky Now’
The first track to be taken from Ryan Adams’ forthcoming 13th – 13th! – album ‘Ashes & Fire’, sees him returning to the tried and tested Jackson Browne-and-James Taylor crafted method of honeyed canyon troubadour-ism. “I don’t remember/Were we wild and young?” he croons, like a warm California breeze drifting over Big Sur. Delicious.
Leonie Cooper, Deputy News Editor
4. Gallows – ‘True Colours’
If you feared that Frank Carter would take Gallows’ ferocity with him, their debut with new vocalist Wade MacNeil smashes your worry into billions of pieces. Brutally short and crushingly heavy, this is a hard jab to the jaw for anyone who thought Carter’s departure would be the end of the Watford punks.
Tom Goodwyn, News Reporter
5. Cass McCombs – ‘The Same Thing’
Primed to release his second album of the year, ‘Humor Risk’, in November, the fantastic Mr McCombs returns with a fresh slice of Americana as upbeat as you’d expect from a man with the ability to churn out music faster than a Pendulum fan’s heartrate at V Festival.
Jamie Fullerton, Features Editor
6. Lady Gaga – ‘Yoü And I’ (Metronomy Remix)
While they once made the English coastline glitter like the Côte d’Azur, Metronomy have looked further north this time. They’ve changed Gaga’s triumphant tune of true love and destiny into a Ken Loach film, where the relationship sighs with fatalism, rather than choice. Brilliantly, smokily gloomy.
Ailbhe Malone, writer
7. Wavves – ‘I Wanna Meet Dave Grohl’
His new EP is called ‘Life Sux’. His girlfriend says, “I’m into being the new Kurt and Courtney.” He’s probably planning an epic wank for the ‘Nevermind’ anniversary. Nathan Williams loves grunge, and if he keeps knocking out tunes like this, Dave Grohl might want to meet him too.
Mike Williams, Deputy Editor
8. Dum Dum Girls – ‘Bedroom Eyes/Coming Down’
Not one but two teaser tracks escaped from the new Dum Dum Girls album this week. The first sounds like Throwing Muses, the second like Mazzy Star, and both confirm that singer Dee Dee has been channeling a lot of Chrissie Hynde lately. Get psyched.
Krissi Murison, Editor
9. DJ Shadow – ‘Warning Call’ (Featuring Tom Vek)
As if a track that featured these two wasn’t mind-blowing enough – this, from the producer’s forthcoming album ‘The Less You Know, The Better’, has a chorus that tells you sarcastically “It’s cool to be you”. Like one of those ’80s self-help cassette tapes, but better.
Abby Tayleure, Writer
10. Surfer Blood – ‘Miranda’
Here’s a band who know the art of crafting a truly great pop song: write as many choruses as you can and cram them all into the same song. Here they manage no less than three, as well as a brilliant bass solo nicked right out of Peter Hook’s back pocket.
Matt Wilkinson, New Music Editor