Beautiful Freaks S12E01: April Music Round-Up

Beautiful Freaks Radio is back for this spring season/Trinity term! We’re starting off with this April Music Round-Up, featuring some of the best music released over the past 30 days. You can check out the full schedule for this term at this link, and we also have a Best New Music Spotify Playlist featuring even more great new tracks. Scroll down all the way for this week’s playlist!

Among the albums released this April that I discussed in this episode are two Swedish bands/artists, Holy Now and Sibille Attar. The former have just released their debut album and it’s a banger. Reminiscent of Makthaverskan, who are from Gothenburg too, but catchier. The single ‘Pearl’ is outstanding, but it is the preceding track ‘Tainted Heart’ that is my current favourite. Highly recommended! Sibille Attar’s EP Paloma’s Hand, out now via PNK SLM recordings, is also nice, albeit more varied, both in terms of style and quality. ‘I Don’t Have To’ is a right anthem, but with six tracks taking up nearly half an hour – the lenght of a short album – most tracks don’t manage to get to the point as much as the single does.

Two more established bands featured on here are Speedy Ortiz and Hop Along. Twerp Verse contains a couple of excellent tracks, but like previous Speedy Ortiz albums it sounds too chaotic for me to enjoy it. I suspect this is just the band’s style, but given how much I like the lead singles, such as ‘Lucky 88’ or the previous album’s ‘The Graduates’, I’m disappointed. Hop Along, on the other hand, have released their best album yet with Bark Your Head Off, Dog. It reminds me of The National, even though they don’t sound like it. There’s something special about Frances Quinlan’s voice, which has the quality of a further instrument, as well as the way Hop Along’s songs sound like they fall apart. This is most apparent on ‘Not Abel’, which explores itself in various directions before, only at the end, taking off with force. On this episode, ‘Somewhere A Judge’ was played.

Lastly, there’s an album by German band Krakow Loves Adana and an EP from Corporationpop. Krakow Loves Adana write lovely, melancholic pop songs, with Deniz Cicek’s voice being the driving force. Her vocals are grand like Florence Welch’s, but without becoming bombastic, giving the whole album a sweltering hot-summer atmosphere. ‘Rapture’ and ‘American Boy’ are two of their best singles yet, but other album tracks such as ‘Hamburg’ and ‘The Day The Internet Died’, the latter of which is played on this show, are equally interesting. Corporationpop’s Meet Me By the Viaduct EP, out now via Odd Box Records, is something else entirely. This collection of four songs is as much pop as poetry, and it can be appreciated on many different levels. The lyrics manage to describe corporationpop’s subjects, such as the city of Stockport (“spiritual home of universally low self-esteem”), with both evocative detail and universalisable insight, while the pronunciation and intonation can be enjoyed even in the absence of any meaning the words may have. It’s certainly one of the most interested records of the year so far.

There’s no radio show next week as we’ll be at this gig featuring Blue House, who we put on in Oxford last year, and Lewsberg, a Dutch band also played in this radio episode. Our next episode will thus be on the 13th of May, from 8-9pm BST as always.

Playlist

1. Eels – Beautiful Freak

2. Charlie Lane – Crazy Happy
3. Hatchie – Sleep
4. Speedy Ortiz – You Hate the Title

5. Holy Now – Tainted Heart
6. Sibille Attar – I Don’t Have To

7. Janelle MonĂ¡e – Crazy, Classic, Life

8. Jim James – Just a Fool
9. School Damage – Scump Damage
10. Lewsberg – Carried Away

11. Hop Along – Somewhere a Judge
12. Linda Vogel – Isis & Osiris
13. Catgod – Heartbeat In My Hand

14. REW<< – Our Houses, Built On Sand
15. Krakow Loves Adana – The Day the Internet Died
16. Corporationpop – Seven Miles South

17. Wende Snijders – Voor Alles

-- Beautiful Freaks, April 30, 2018