Singles of the Week
We may be a day late, but we made it...
Debut single from X-Factor finalist Amelia Lily is a unashamed Xenomania-produced pop track that over does the autotune and jangles whilst conveniently forgetting to include a much needed hook. It's glossy and overproduced, disappointingly failing to show Lily OR Xenomania at their best. Despite that, it does give plenty of credence to the singer as a pop star, so let's hopes she ups her game for her next single.
A blend of emotive lyrics and broodingly atmospheric choruses make up the bulk of the latest self-titled EP release from Irish acoustic ground Kodaline. With their intoxicatingly candid approach to their songwriting, they have produced four tracks of melodic layering accentuated by the distinctive and endearing vocals of their frontman. Standout track 'Lose Your Mind' has the kind of chorus you would expect to gain a lot of radio airtime, leaning towards a sound in the vein of Manic Street Preachers. Organic and eclectic, this is equal parts subtle and urgent, with a dash of intoxicating charm for good measure.
Man Like Me
A Mike Skinner-led reboot of a crowd favourite, Man Like Me's latest single 'London Town VIP' builds on the promise of 'Squeeze' by delivering an upbeat, carnival-tinged dance pop anthem that's set to be lapped up by anyone with a penchant for this type of thing.
All fuzzy guitars and wispy vocals, 'RIP' is a cracking taster of Ringo Deathstarr's upcoming second album Mauve. After pummelling your ears for two minutes, you're disappointed when it wraps up so soon; surely a higher compliment can't be paid to a track?
In an otherwise odd year for music, few albums have secured office consensus like the one from Shrag. Securing the affections of the 'thinning up top' brigade in the cluttered back room, it's a chance to re-live pretty much any student disco c. 1984 where the uniform would be regulation cardigan, turned-up jeans and a pair of DMs (shoes, not boots). 'Devastating Bones' is a raw, glam rock stomper and it still sounds great after a few months on the deck.
Single of the Week
Worst thing about The Tricks' monthly series of new singles? It makes us even more excited to hear what they can do with a full length album. 'Not Too Young' has a wonderful rhythm to it that almost evokes a hoedown flavour, all driven by solid guitars and a smart acceleration into a frantic finale. Top notch.