Radar Roundup – July 24, 2020: The killer new music you need to hear this week

NME‘s Radar Roundup is your weekly reminder of the rule-breaking rising artists you cannot afford to ignore right now. From interviews to reviews and track recommendations, this is where you’ll met your favourite new artist.

Interviews

Each week, we meet the most exciting new names in the game. This week, we go inside Crack Cloud’s righteous debut album, Bristol’s Katy J Pearson hails the city’s scene and Advertisement make their case to support the Rolling Stones.

Crack Cloud

Although the sprawling Vancouver collective remains fiercely independent and anti-convention, they’re supremely skilful at what they do by any standard. They don’t play by anyone’s else’s rules, but that’s a result of artistic choice rather than any kind of creative limitation. Read the full interview Luke Cartledge

Katy J Pearson

Her debut album ‘Return’ is the perfect amalgamation of her personal style (which she describes as “‘70s Texas mom”) and her penchant for classic rock. Made up of songs she’s written over a four-year period, the collection swoops from folk-laced ballads to bouncy pop riffs, with a sense of West Country meets Wild West to her Stevie Nicks-esque vocals. Read the full interview Georgia Evans

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Helmed by enigmatic local shaman Captain Tripps, their debut EP traffics in the kind of raging, big-muffed SST squalls that elevated Milk Music and Gun Outfit to kings of the Olympian underground. While their just-released full-length, ‘American Advertisement‘, eschews the gale force of the EP for the most part, the band flaunts a broader, more expansive musical palate. Read the full interview Jonathan Garrett

Reviews

Never let a killer release fly under the radar: get our verdict on Skullcrusher’s haunting new EP, Oliver Tree’s meme-heavy debut and new-gen pop heroes Nasty Cherry’s ‘Season 2’.

Skullcrusher – ‘Skullcrusher’ EP

LA-based songwriter Helen Ballentine’s debut four-track EP is curious for more reasons than the glaring oppositions between expectation and sound, though. Sure, it takes us to an alternate reality where Joan Baez might renounce her peaceful activism to join hands with Napalm Death, but the resulting songs hint at a vital new artist within indie’s more delicate ecosystem. Key track: ‘Places/Plans’ Read the full review Tristan Gatward

Oliver Tree – ‘Ugly Is Beautiful’

Injecting humour into everything he does while offering a surrealist escape from the mundane everyday – it’s easy to see how Tree’s outlandishness has made him the digital age’s definitive rockstar. It’s a role he’s happy to play but, beyond the fuzzy guitars and old-school hip-hop beats, Tree’s sometimes thought-provoking narrative proves that perhaps he’s more than a piss-taking internet troll. Read the full review Ben Jolley

Nasty Cherry – ‘Season 2’ EP

Their debut release – and its accompanying Netflix show – was all a bit dramatic but thankfully found their feet quickly. ‘Season 2’, however, sees the gang really start to play. Away from the glare of the public eye, the four-piece turn hype into something more permanent with a confident collection of tracks. Key track: ‘Shoulda Known Better’ Read the full review Ali Shutler

New Bangers

NME’s New Bangers is our weekly updated playlist full of the essential new tunes you need in your life.

Biig Piig – ‘Don’t Turn Around’

It’s been fascinating to witness the London artist continue to chop, change and experiment with their sound over the past three years. New single ‘Don’t Turn Around’ is head-spinning alt-R&B with a few Balearic-beats thrown in for kicks. And why not?

Bree Runway – ‘Gucci’

Quickly establishing herself as one of Britain’s most versatile – and explosive – young artists, Bree finds herself surrounded with only the finest on her latest team-up with Maliibu Miitch, her most assured entry yet.

Yard Act – ‘Fixer Upper’

As hilarious as it is world-weary, the Leeds band tap into the endless pit of despair most millennials face when asked by well-meaning family members; ‘Are you looking to buy somewhere, then?’ Somehow, this song’s protagonist/antagonist (delete where applicable) has ended up with not one, but two properties to his name. Ugh.

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