Singles of the Week
On this cold and gloomy November day what better way to cheer yourself up than to take a look through the latest singles to hit the airwaves. Does your favourite match our pick?
With a faltering, vulnerable, female vocal of the kind that's really pretty popular these days, this is a MOR dance track. More than competent, just not very exciting.
A suspiciously Destiny's Child-esqe track, with a nice relaxing melody and soulful vocals. Not quite radio one material, but it'll certainly have its fans.
The latest track to be taken from fourth studio album The Weight Of Your Love, 'Honesty' holds no surprises for even casual followers of Editors. Moody synth rock writ large, you either love it or you hate it. We're in the former camp.
A Led Zep-esqe guitar part coupled with a voice that sounds like a mix between Killers frontmanBrandon Flowers and Keane frontman Tom Chaplin. Not the likeliest of bedfellows but it works to produce a catchy, mellow indie tune. Lovely.
Having just finished their UK headline tour and European dates with Simple Minds, 'In Our Blood' marks Fenech-Soler's first release on new label SO Recordings. New home though hasn't equalled new sound as the track is the usual synth-driven, energetic rock we've come to expect. Were it summer, this is something we'd be hearing on fields across the UK.
Released to tie in with TMF Tip Findlay's debut UK tour, the Greasy Love EP delivers everything that made us pay attention in the first place. The title track is an in-your-face blast of dirty rock punctuated with sharp lyrics - "I was born to be misunderstood" - before 'Black Cloud Silver Lining' strips everything back, leaving just her characteristic vocals to win you over, and 'Fake Black Heart' rounds off the original efforts in rollicking, catchy fashion.
Francis & The Lights
New York based singer-songwriter and producer Francis & The Lights' returns with new EP Like A Dream, his first new tracks since 2010's cult mini-album It'll Be Better. Laidback pop splashed with r&b influences awaits on the four-track EP, which marks a welcome - and promising - comeback.
Hipster five piece Haraket are another addition to the moody synth crowd that have seen Chvrches and London Grammar hit big in 2013. This is a bit smoother, and a touch jazzy, but has a similar effect.
Part of the then emerging London mod scene, 60s act John's Children counted a young Marc Bolan temporarily among their number, which - partly - explains their ongoing cult status, although the Bolan connection has often overshadowed the fact that they produced solid trippy mod-psych of their own. With a history of unreleased and rare material, their catalogue has always been collectible (the withdrawn 'Midsummer Night's Scene' sells for around £4000) but is now handily gathered together on this 2-CD set from Grapefruit, alongside some solo recordings and alternate mixes.Their initial contract with Columbia produced two decent singles in 'The Love I Thought I'd Found' and 'Just What You Want ...' even if they were heavily reliant on session musicians (b-side 'But She's Mine' brazely lifts the main 'I Can't Explain' riff from The Who and has Jeff Beck deliver a piercing solo). A switch to Track Records brought Bolan onside - numbers like 'Sara, Crazy Child' and 'Desdemona' immediately show his stamp - and a growing confidence saw them thrown off a German tour with The Who, their boisterous and anarchic stage show presumed to be a threat to the headliners. A fake live album, Orgasm (overdubbed with audience noise from The Beatles' A Hard Day's Night soundtrack) didn't surface until 1970, by which time the band had already been defunct for two years. Vocalist Andy Ellison had a brief solo career including a couple of interesting Beatles covers and a version of Bolan's 'Hippy Gumbo' before re-emerging with Radio Stars who were signed to 70s indie Chiswick Records. With the John's Children mastertapes long-since disappeared, Grapefruit have done an excellent service in rounding up such an authoritative - and decent sounding - collection for one of the period's most intriguing outfits.
Authoritative collection for 60s mod-psych outfit - including cameos from Marc Bolan.
A rather shameless cash in on the Doctor Who 50th Anniversary celebrations, described as a 'hit' despite only reaching 25 in the singles chart upon release in 1978. Doz Amigoz's poor excuse of a remix adds nothing to the original and it all makes for a rather pointless exercise.
An atmospheric industrial bass driven track, with haunting vocals. There's fuzz, clanging, and key changes, it's much, much better than that probably sounds though.
The Family Rain
The first official single to be taken from their debut album Under The Volcano, 'Feel Better (Frank)' still leaves you with the feeling that The Family Rain are better witnessed live. For some reason, the rolling drums and frantic pace of this effort just feels flat on record, meaning it doesn't arrest as it should.
Single of the Week
Lily & Madeleine
Ooo we LOVE Midwestern sisters Lily & Madeleine here at The Music Fix, it's one of the few things we all agree on. And what's not to love; beautiful harmonies, glorious melodies, enthralling lyricism. The haunting 'Come To Me' is the latest single from their sublime self-titled debut. Have a listen and fall under their spell.