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Fresher Sounds - The best new music - 10/09/18

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Over the next couple of weeks us students will start making our way back to the world of university, and with that comes hours spent packing, commuting and, of course, prepping for Freshers' Week. Fear not - here's some new music to soundtrack that 'back to school' feeling.

Willow artwork

FURGUS - Willow

This is a beautiful and emotionally intimate song. The haunting, almost distant, vocals contrast with the crisp guitar plucking creates a full, cinematic sound. What initially began as a lullaby for a close friends' new baby has now been transformed into a hopeful song for us all to enjoy. The bridge is particularly heartwarming, as FURGUS writes, "Shh now, don't cry, we're here / All around you so much hope and love / One day you'll be grown and everything will be beautiful / And you'll fill the world with light."

Pizzagirl - highschool

Exuding 80s electronica sounds, this single breathes an effortless groove into every second. It carries that homemade feel that often comes with a bedroom-based production, as Pizzagirl (or Liam Brown) writes, records and produces from his home in Liverpool. But that's exactly what makes this nostalgic song so charming. 

STIIR - Free Yourself 

This band has received a lot of support from Radio 1 and BBC Introducing with this single, but is well deserved. While the opening is reminiscent of some of The Kooks early tracks, it quickly develops into something unique, with the band's jazz, soul and funk influence adding a new flare to an originally alt-pop track. The chorus is catchy and joyous - the perfect feel-good mood lifter. 

Cat Burns - Sober

Just 18 years old, Cat Burns has recently graduated from the prestigious BRIT school. Nonetheless, she has already created a distinct sound, so is sure to receive the attention that she deserves. This R&B afro-pop track is a perfect opener for your pre-drinks playlist, boasting a heavy beat bound to get your hips moving. 

Redinho feat. Kimbra - Square 1  

For fans of Childish Gambino, this electronica R&B track is a must. Redinho has collaborated with Kimbra, a Grammy Award-winning artist, on this single and the two have created something really special. Kimbra, when talking about the single, said, "We wanted it to feel claustrophobic and almost uncomfortably intimate, to echo that kind of relationship where there is no space to breathe." The motifs used in this song really encompass that claustrophia and also add to its infectiousness. 

Cursive - Under the Rainbow

Nebraskan rock band, Cursive, have released their second single from their forthcoming album Vitriola, due to be released on the 5th October. The band haven't released any new music since 2012, but this single makes up for lost time; it's dynamic and unapologetic, just like good rock music should be. 

Lauren Aquilina - Psycho

Despite announcing that she was quitting music two years ago, Lauren Aquilina has returned with a new single and it is, arguably, her best to date. It is dark and moody - miles apart from the pop songs of her past. This new era for Aquilina proves just how fearless she has become in her attitude towards the music industry. For fans of Taylor Swift's Reputation, this is a must-have for your playlists. 

Alfie Neale - Liquor Dreams

Self-produced and independently released, this second single from Alfie Neale and is surrounded by an aura of soul, jazz and hip-hop - a combination that causes the track to exude with cool. The electric guitar riffs are hypnotic and the saxophone adds a whole new dimension, fleshing out this atmospheric track. 

Mahalia - Surprise Me 

Famous for her summer hit, 'Wish I Missed My Ex', this is the new single from Birmingham-based singer-songwriter, Mahalia. In the opening lines, Mahalia sings, "You say we're a no go / That's a low blow" - it's this kind of punchy lyricism that really makes this song. The repetition used throughout causes it to be just as strong as her summer hit, and illustrates that dizzying realisation you feel when someone just isn't that into you. 

Marsicans - Suburbs 

This indie-pop quartet are on the rise, after playing the BBC Radio 1 stage at Reading and Leeds festivals this summer, they are now about to embark on a UK tour supporting Fickle Friends. 'Suburbs' is an upbeat track layered with harmonies and instrumentals; it's this intensity of sound that causes the music to flow through your entire body and will get you pumped for the new year ahead. 

JUICEBOXXX - Ripping Up My Soul 

Milwaukee's enigmatic JUICEBOXXX explores his own rock and roll appraisal and an inherently rock and roll lifestyle. Tearing electric guitars, reverb-heavy melodies and clashing cymbals embolden the track's driving theme, which he spoke about ahead of the new release: "There is a punk rock version of "Catholic guilt" and I don't really know how to process it. Some people end up dying. But I continue to write songs. And try to take it one day at a time." 

Llovers - Without You 

A delicately hand-crafted patchwork of indie, rock, pop and psychedelia, Llovers are the North-eastern writers of the 2018 lullaby. 'Without you' has a penchant for the shimmering, blissed-out pop track with a steady acoustic build-up opening to a cascade of honey-infused synthesisers. Sweet and tender vocals float atop airy drums, making for the perfect chill-out track.

Rodes Rollins - Mystery Man

Based in Brooklyn via Colorado, Rodes Rollins has drawn much of her inspiration for dark and sultry single 'Mystery Man' from sparse, western landscapes and her producer Noah Georgeson, who worked closely on the theme track from Netflix series Narcos. Referring to her own sound as 'cowgirl poetry', warbling vocals, a twanging, Narcos-esque melody and understated drums encompass the single in an air of vintage cool. A weird and wonderful addition to your late night soundtrack.

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