Singles Of The Week
Here for your listening pleasure this week, a very strong batch of new MP3's.
Brother & Bones
Described in the press release as southern rock / grunge / (heavy) folk, the gentle rock of the title track suggests the band have been slightly missold. It's more subtle and varied than that description, 'Lost As One' is softer and 'Long Way To Go' is a slow burner. Frontman Rich Thomas has a touch of the James Blunt's to his voice, but honestly, don't let that put you off. This is promising, very promising from a fresh sound in British guitar music.
Cementing our belief that her debut album has the potential to be something quite special, 'Mess Around' showcases Nottingham singer-songwriter Indiana's flawless vocals - robust and delicate often at the same time - in all their glory. Sublime.
Backed by the George Fitzgerald-produced 'I Like You', the latest taster of Katy B's anticipated second album leaves us somewhat nonplussed. The sheer magnetism of Katy B's performance ensures that '5 AM' avoids being generic, but we're hoping Little Red delivers more variety as otherwise it's a trick - strong vocals backed by chart beats - that could wear thin.
'Sweetest Thing' finds Lulu James in a somewhat more stripped back and softer mood, putting her soulful vocals front-and-centre. It all works perfectly, even with the odd loop that sounds a bit like a slowed-down Crazy Frog.
Pet Shop Boys
A surprising effort from Pet Shop Boys that sounds as if they're desperately trying to remain modern whilst maintaining their 80s vibe, as evidenced by Example's excellent guest spot. A decent track, if somewhat generic.
The Diamond Lights
Don't be fooled, The Diamond Lights aren't a big hairy tattooed man. Their music is a bit of a throwback to the mid-nineties and the plethora of angular pop-rock that jumped up in the form of bands like The Futureheads and Young Knives. It's got some depth to it and although they may have missed the movement this is still decent stuff.
The High Wire
Three minutes of feel good, gospel tinged, electro-pop that you’d have to have a heart of stone not to tap your toes along to. Lovely stuff.
A Joy Division-esqe effort from The KVB, laden with bass heavy synths and minimalist drums, you could almost be forgiven for thinking this was a long lost track from the aforementioned Mancunians. However, there is a reason it would have been an outtake, as it fails to inspire almost anything in the listener and gets worse with repeat listening.
Excellent rendition of the Bo Diddley classic and what is fast becoming their signature song (being one of the highlights of their live shows). Irish teen wonders The Strypes really make this song their own. How they manage to record a faithful version without resorting to mere imitation is just one sign of their massive potential. It's good to see the young show an appreciation for the classics.
Single of the Week
Regular readers will note we were completely won over by Norwegian singer-songwriter Farao's debut single 'Skin' and 'Tell A Lie' makes us think that it was just the start of something beautiful. Taken from her debut eponymous EP (out early next year), the track is an ice-cool, subtly moving delight.