An increasingly moody selection of tracks finds Getintothis’ Chris Burgess searching for salvation, and finding it in a Glasgow bedsit.
The Go! Team: The Scene Between – Single of the Week
Not just Single of the Week, this is the single of the year so far – an absolutely belting tune taken from their album of the same name, released on 23 March.
Joyous, uplifting and totally mesmerising – The Scene Between features everything you’d expect from a Go! Team track, plus much more besides.
Melody-driven and featuring choppy vocals and screeching guitars, this song features one of the most glorious choruses the Brighton band have put to record.
Simply sublime stuff.
Avi Buffalo: Think It’s Gonna Happen Again
“I ran over two dogs, then I ate them after” – perhaps the weirdest lyric I’ve heard so far this year comes from Californian twee-pop outfit Avi Buffalo.
Think It’s Gonna Happen Again is a splendidly off-kilter tune, melodic yet quite disturbing. The vocals, supplied by the implausibly-named Avigdor Zahner-Isenberg, float high above the rest of the band, stylish and anxious in equal measure.
Moodiness rating: 4
Soon to be released on The Coral’s Skeleton Key Records, and produced by James Skelly, Stockport’s psychedelic quintet Blossoms provide us with a light slice of mystery with Blow.
Sounding familiar yet otherworldly, Blow does have a distinct Merseybeat feel to it, its bass thumping and flowing, giving space for the band’s spectral guitar lines and Tom Ogden’s moody vocals.
Blossoms play The Kazimier on 22 February.
Moodiness rating: 5
Flo Morrissey: Pages of Gold
Released on 31 March, Pages of Gold is a quite remarkable tune from the 20 year old Londoner. While the tune itself is nothing too fancy, Morrissey’s soft voice is… wait… that sounds wrong… Flo’s soft voice is beautiful and haunting.
Her debut album is due for release later this year, and is hugely anticipated following her performances at SXSW, Green Man and Wilderness Festival.
You can catch her supporting The Staves at The Arts Club on 10 February .
Moodiness rating: 6
All We Are: Stone
Taken from their forthcoming eponymous debut album, Stone has another haunting vocal track, from bassist Guro Gikling.
It’s certainly a well-travelled track, having been written in a cabin in the Norwegian mountains, a cottage in North Wales, a disused school in Liverpool and then finally recorded in London.
Stone builds to an exhilarating and heartfelt end, Gikling’s voice soaring and rolling like waves, crashing into the luscious arrangements beneath.
Moodiness rating: 7
Hillström & Billy: The Arising
It must be the time of year for it, as here’s another moody and atmospheric track. I guess they make sense when you think about it – Christmas is over, the weather is crap, payday has taken forever to arrive – but still strange that so many turn up at once.
Taken from their upcoming album The Neverending Paint Job, this is a classily-produced and dreamily-arranged track, with a distinctly retro feel, bringing Neil Young to mind. This is music to get lost in, with violins evoking a wild and dusty landscape.
Moodiness rating: 8
Slug: Running To Get Past Your Heart
Fuzzy bassline, erratic drums, simplistic vocals, discordant guitars, mad bongos – there’s literally nothing unlikable about this track from Sunderland’s Ian Black.
Running To Get Past Your Heart is like a Money Mark tune played by Led Zeppelin on kids instruments. It really shouldn’t work, yet is more than the sum of its parts – fun, catchy and bouncy – quite unlike most of the rest of this week’s singles!
Moodiness rating: minus 10!
The King Khan & BBQ Show: Alone Again
Creeping along as though music stopped in the mid 1950’s, Alone Again is stripped down punk rock ‘n’ roll of the finest kind.
Not content with topping our list of gigs in 2014, The King is due to drop a new album – their first since 2009’s Invisible Girl.
Bad News Boys is released on In The Red on 2 March.
Moodiness rating: A sexy 6
Zu: Rudra Dances Over Burning Rome
The experimental Italians return with the most ferocious three minutes of noise/math rock released so far this year. A very marmite proposition (not everyone likes saxophone, I guess), this is a bold, heavy and immensely satisfying piece of work.
Rudra Dances Over Burning Rome is taken from their upcoming album Cortar Todo, released on 23 March.
Moodiness rating: 9
Tuff Love: That’s Right
The Glasgow duo of Julie Eisenstein and Susie Bear are back, with a lo-fi, scuzz-pop classic.
Listen as the powerchords clash, marvel at their distortion-heavy choruses! We are finally fully saved from the pits of atmospheric wispiness!
This is a fine tune, with the video shot in Bear’s flat, where the track was written (and quite possibly produced). That’s Right is the kind of music we need more of these days – powerful and driven, with heart-wrenching harmonies.
That’s Right appears on their upcoming Dross EP. They’re touring at the moment, but sadly no Liverpool dates. It will only be matter of time before they hit the city, I hope.
Scuzziness rating: 9
Madonna: Living For Love (Offer Nissim Living For Drama Remix)
Oh Madonna. Still pumping out pop tunes in her mid-fifties, our Madge has returned with new remixes for her single, Living For Love, from her upcoming album Rebel Heart.
This remix is dreadful, but the original track wasn’t really that good to begin with. You can’t polish a turd, but you can overproduce a remix of one, it appears.
Moodiness rating: Zero