Goodness, it’s been a while hasn’t it? Aside from a rather tongue in cheek post about the new Craig David song (did you spot all 12 song and album title references?) we’ve been silent for a couple of months now, which isn’t like us at all. We won’t bore you with details but after a combination of domestic upheaval, a truly remarkable World Cup and a very enjoyable and hot couple of days (and very wet nights) at Latitude, we are back, awake and ready to rock.
As we’re no doubt sure you noticed, there was a lot (and we mean a LOT) of cracking new music released over the last few months and while we are all about looking forward, we wanted to take a few moments to show some love to some of the tracks that came out during our unscheduled sabbatical. So, as a kind of gentle reintroduction (for us and you) to writing, we present for your delectation a special What’s In The Box rammed with quality tunes, possibly some puns and hopefully some reasonable scribblings.
Waylayers – “Take Hold”
We’ve been championing the talents of London-based Waylayers for some time and, after tipping them for big things in 2013, we think we are about to be proved correct. Having Ninja’d their way into the hearts and minds of the American public last year it’s time for a multi-national ground assault, beginning with “Take Hold”. Out on the wonderful Alcopop! Records on 15 September, “Take Holds” sees the trio move away from vast, anthemic synths and offers instead a much tighter, claustrophobic and funky sensibility. There’s a foalsian feeling to it as the bassline grooves along, the guitar tickles and Harry’s vocals pull you in close. It’s a dark, mellow and groovy tune that should have people on their forthcoming American and UK dates bobbing along in rhythmic delight.
HAze – “Reckless Heart”
We know little about Haze other than the fact that she is a girl in Reading and that she has a syrupy sweet voice that shines and gleams like sunlight breaking through rain cloud. Taken from her Picture Frame EP (which is out now), “Reckless Heart” is blessed with gorgeously light melodies and warmth that we could happily get lost in for hours and hours.
Elsie – “Mad Chemistry”
We’ve featured London based, Liverpool born Elsie a few times now and on the last two occasions she’s got us rather hot under the collar. With her latest offering, “Mad Chemistry”, things have escalated. Previously it was the undulating and slinky harmonies and the sensual and sultry melodies that provided the steam, now she’s gone all in and added lyrics to match. It’s about sex and frankly, we have absolutely no problem with that at all. She has a gorgeous voice, makes gorgeous music and now, well we didn’t think temperatures could get much higher but yeah, yeah they have.
Bea – “Safe Ground”
When we first wrote about the mysterious Bea we were accused of being laughable and pretentious, which is pretty much every bloggers dream analysis. Since then Bea has released another tune online and while we still know nothing about her, “Safe Ground” is another piece of quality, muted pop music with a gorgeously relaxed vibe to it. Like fluffy unicorns frolicking gently in a secret lagoon…
Laura Welsh – “Break The Fall”
At the turn of the year we named Laura Welsh as one of our artists to listen out for in 2014. Given that she had already supported the likes of London Grammar, a major behind her and a number of cracking R&B infused pop songs under her belt at the time, it was probably a safe-ish bet. You do have to keep banging out great tunes to have any chance at success though and thankfully, Laura is doing just that. “Break The Fall” is three minutes of dark and dramatic electro-pop music, all stompy rhythms and big vocals that we just love.
“Break The Fall” is out on 11 August via Outsiders/Polydor.
Saint Agnes – “Old Bone Rattle”
Yee-hah! Saddle up boy and get ready to ride, the saint Agnes due of Jon and Kitty are back and this time they have the full force of the Energy Snake behind them. “Old Bone Rattle” is a gloriously rawkus, foot stomping, gun toting, western of a blues rock track. It’s a magnificent bastard, as stunning as miles of desert and just and dangerous. This is the kind of tune villains take over towns to, that acid trips are taken to and that we just want top rock out with.
“Old Bone Rattle” is out now via Energy Snake Records.
bAnoffee – “Got It”
We’re sure there have already been about a gagillion puns around Martha Brown’s musical alias so we’re not even going to bother… for once. Instead we shall focus on the rapid fire scattergun of the digital beats, the sweet and soft melty vocals and captivating childlike electronic tootling. Taken from her forthcoming EP (out 22 August) “Got It” is a dreamily cool antidote for the baking heat that the UK is enjoying right now.
Verre – “blu”
Almost a year ago we featured a ridiculously sexy and sultry track from California five-piece, De Verre. With a totally nsfw video to accompany it, “Mad” had our pulses racing, heart beating and blood flowing places… Several cold showers later and they have dropped the De to become simply Verre are back with new song “blu” ahead of a six-track EP due later in the year. Singer Alice’s vocals are as soft and sensual as before but “blu” is much more pop-rock than pop-rotica and it quickly shows. The chorus is full of sass and attitude but the track is also laced with self-doubt and insecurity. It’s also very good and perfect for a good old fashioned hairbrush sing-along. Go on, you know you want to.
See, we told you it had been a good few months for music and there were many many more too, some of which we will be featuring in more depth over the coming days. Normal service will resume Monday; it’s good to be back.