Five great songs again! Before you start listening, check out the new single by Stanley Brinks and the Old Kaniks too: we premiered it yesterday and it’s a different sound than normal.
The Courtneys – Silver Velvet
This is the hype of the week, with blogs from indie to Pitchfork writing about this. But unlike other such fads, the one about ‘Silver Velvet’ is totally justified. A lot of band tend to do too much of the same thing: too dreamy, too noisy, too happy. The Courtneys do it all in one track. ‘Silver Velvet’ has a wistful melody, a certain drive, an ungraspable melody. Just when you think it’s U2 it’s The Ronettes. Their second album’s out on Flying Nun Records (yes, you heard that right) on the 17th of February!
Adwaith – Pwysau
So much good music coming out of Wales these day! There’s Gwenno, of course, as well as Castles who were featured on our site last week, and this band Adwaith sounds just as spacious and mysterious. I can’t understand a word, but I understand the sounds, wich, although Welsh, are reminiscent of the melancholy of Polish. The diversity of languages is a divisive thing, but reduced to mere pronunciation there’s unity in it too. ‘Pwysau’ is out on Decidedly Records, but appears to be part of a fundraising compilation for the charity Hope Not Hate. See here.
Peaness – Seafoam Islands
Speaking of Wales, that’s also where Odd Box Records’s gone, but despite their geographic departure they keep offering us sweet, punky indie pop. The new track in their single series is ‘Seafoam Islands’ by Peaness and it’s of a quality we expect from the label. Too dark to be sweet; too loud to be easy; too demanding to be easily forgotten. And indeed, the single (released 27 January) has virtually sold out, so get in quick if you like this as much as we do!
Happyness – Falling Down
I saw Happyness once in Oxford supporting Slow Club; they were much better than the main act. I remember them being slightly weird, playing songs with titles like ‘Great Minds Think Alike, All Brains Taste the Same’. ‘Falling Down’ is a surprisingly dark song – the band’s name to the contrary – like a Britpop-ish Sparklehorse. What lovely strings at the end. The track’s out on Moshi Moshi Records and an album’s set for spring 2017.
Jennie Abrahamson – Man In You
This is unashamedly 80s – isn’t that the intro to ‘Africa’? Oh no, it’s Jennie Abrahamson gliding through the universe. It’s her vocals that elevate ‘Man In You’ to something better than the radio crap from three decades ago (but the unperturbed ‘Live Aid’-synths surely do help). Curious what the album will sound like. It’ll be out February 24, on How Sweet the Sound Records!
Well, just one really, and it’s not even a great video. The track, however, is more than worth your while. And Meilyr Jones is Welsh, which seems to be a running theme this week. What a voice though.
-- Beautiful Freaks, November 27, 2016