Singles of the Week
Call The Doctor
The name might suggest too much Sleater-Kinney worship (and there is a S-K shirt in the video), but this turns out to be more straightforward indie rock - like a grungier Elastica. It's short and to the point (a plus) but not quite there yet in terms of distinctiveness.
With the eccentricity of a female Jack White, new girl about town Candice Gordon howls and croons her way through this rough 'n ready slab of a debut single, with a complimentary punk twist. Equal parts snarling choruses to seductive verses, this is best served turned up to 11, with a side serving of whiskey to swallow it down. Laden with attitude, TMF are already putting bets on the Botswana native being one to watch in 2013.
A re-imagining of Minnie Ripperton's 'Two People', this really comes into life once the tribal beats kick in; in some ways it inhabits the same world as some of the recent Florence stuff. This will get under your skin. Quietly.
Ice cool and as slick as they come, Electric Guest's 'Awake' impresses with its strong, breathy vocals and funky backdrop, boosted by Danger Mouse's sharp production.
Utilised by Topshop for the yet-to-arrive summer and featuring the brass riff from Dandy Livingstone's 'A Message To You, Rudy', 'London Town' is a gloriously perky slice of pop from Liverpudlian Elsie. It may not be sunny outside, but 'London Town' brings the UV rays direct to your speakers. And as if we weren't aware of how sickeningly talented Elsie is, the track is backed up by a sumptuous, slowed down version of Blondie's 'Heart Of Glass'. Wonderful.
From Ashes Rise
With their first material in nine years, crust punk pioneers From Ashes Rise are back to remind everyone why they are held in such high regard. The A-side 'Rejoice The End' in particular is a heavy, catchy dose of furious hardcore that has you smashing the room up inside thirty seconds.
Hipster favourites Hatcham Social pen a quirky upbeat ode to forbidden lesbianism between a young Muslim and Catholic who meet in a chat room. Whilst it could do with a bigger chorus to meet the expectations of its poppy riffs, it's a garden party friendly four minutes much less controversial than its lyrical content.
This watered down acoustic/hip-hop hybrid from Josh Kumra dulls down his husky vocal ability with a track which has all the power of the retired, grounded Concorde. Kumra relies on the stale guest rap verse formula to attempt to resuscitate single 'Helicopters And Planes'- unluckily K. Koke's clumsy effort is, frankly, embarrassing. Crash and burn.
The first ten seconds of 'Cover It Up' sound promising, but the sultry guitar chords and husky vocal soon lose momentum, tumbling into a Michael Bublé-esque carbon copy. Promising, but needs to ditch the uplifting chorus key changes in favour of the innovative structure showcased in the sophisticated verses.
In the vein of Kaiser Chiefs and The Hoosiers (Matthew P having writing credits with the latter), this would have ridden high on the indie wave of the late 2000's. Twisted with a basic acoustic rhythm, but with little progress on the aforementioned genre, 'Long Straight Lines' is enjoyable background music, but unfortunately that's as far as it goes.
Manchester up and comers Naymedici have been seducing crowds for a while now with their eclectic and endearing music - kind of a cross between The Pogues and Gogol Bordello. And now they have finally released their debut single, the delightful 'Paddy McGee'. Clocking in at just over 2 minutes, 'Paddy McGee' is like a Celtic punk song, something The Ramones may have come up with if they had been from Kilkenny and not Queens. Great stuff.
Awww Rufus Rufus Rufus, this is more like it. Lovely, downtempo tune showcasing Wainwright's sublime voice. The subdued and elegant arrangement heightens the song's pathos without distracting us from Rufus doin' his thang and doing it well.
Yearning for the good old days of the 90s? You could do a lot worse than have The Enemy's 'Like A Dancer' blasting through your stereos. Defiantly lad rock, it's not clever but undoubtedly gets the job done if this type of music gets your blood pumping.
Single of the Week
Riddled with despair, yet tinted with hope, this electro-tinged affair from moody Mercury nominated The Invisible is an organic musical analysis of life and death. Delicate percussion breathes life into the track and gives it solidarity, whilst Okumu's eerie vocals make 'Wings' a standout track in the currently competitive lo-fi genre.