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Fresher Sounds - The best new music - 04/03/19

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After a week of weather more inconclusive than the UK's Brexit deal, we bring you the best new music these turbulent past few days have had to offer with a playlist that vacillates between the more melancholic and the sunnier aspects of life.

Pottery

Image Credit: Luke Orlando

So whether you're curled up in bed, or lazing in the park with a warm can of beer, hunched over a desk or nose-deep in a book, whether you fancy satirical garage rock, or submerging synth-pop, you'd do well to keep on reading. Fresher Sounds might just be the steadfast anchor your life needs right now.

Crows - Wednesday’s Child

Following on from single 'Chain Of Being', Wednesday's Child reaffirms exactly why Crows are the band to keep a watchful eye on this year. 'Wednesday's Child' follows on from previous single 'Chain Of Being' as another abrupt jolt into the drives and impulses of human behaviour. Its scuzzy distorted guitars give a nod to 90s alternative bands like Dinosaur Jr., while the sultry vocals of frontman James Cox are reminiscent of goth-rockers. Cox's barked refrain, “Blame me for all our mistakes”, sees him becoming a martyr for the faults of collective humanity.

Cox explains that “Wednesday’s Child is fundamentally about our communication with others, focusing on misunderstandings - not only between loved ones but also how we treat strangers". Their long-awaited debut album will be released on 22nd March. They will also be supporting IDLES on their UK tour throughout April.

 

JAWS - Fear

'Fear' creates an atmosphere of diving headfirst into icy open water. It slow-burning build-up suddenly plunges into a frantic tempo and you're living at 100mph. The track has JAWS' characteristic blend of synth-pop and indie that has permeated their music since their debut. While their last album moved more into shoegaze territory, ‘Fear’ takes that sonic direction and steers it towards the pop route. It’s particularly heavy on the synth and reverb, giving the atmosphere of fast living, yet trailing with the pain of longing nostalgia. The track's lyrics are equally as hedonistic as frontman Conor Schofield sings, “There’s no meaning to my constant daydreaming /But you’re stuck in my head like I like you there”. 

Speaking about the track Schofield explains "The song is about fight or flight, trying to live via love rather than fear”. The song sees the band taking negativity and turning it into something hauntingly beautiful. JAWS will play a UK tour in April.

Pottery - Lady Solinas

'Lady Solinas' is the first track from Montreal Garage rockers Pottery to be released on Partisan Records, the label which gifted us with bands such as IDLES. After the electric, high-pitched quip of 'Lady Solinas', jangly country-tinged guitars ensue, which creates an almost caricature-like aspect to the track. 

So why the satirical take on Andy Warhol's shooter Valerie Solinas? Boylan explains: “The story is used to consider the power of passion in artists and its effect on their mental condition. Although the lyrics hold a serious message, the approach to convey it is ultimately comedic”. Despite coming in at under three minutes, 'Lady Solinas' showcases Pottery's brimming potential as a band, setting up anticipation for their forthcoming EP No.1, which is due for release on 10th May.

Indigo Lo - Reload

'Reload', the latest track from Hampshire four-piece Indigo Lo, was completed during the band’s recent sessions with producer Matt Jones. It's a bold, yet energetic indie-rock stomper, which has the feel of a futuristic odyssey that bands such as Muse have created in the past. Menacing guitars culminate into debauched riffs, as the lyrics explore the folly of arrogance - “You’re not the chosen one, just the second son”. The band are to tour the UK in April and May as well as appearing at Liverpool's Sound City Festival.

Jackie Mendoza - Seahorse

'Seahorse' begins with the sound of bubbles, which give way to Mendosa’s breathy vocals as we submerge into her sonic world. It's a track that takes influences from her Tijuana heritage and warps them with off-piste pop ideas as Mendoza sings, "I know it's hard for you to make up your mind". Her EP LuvHz is to be released on 26th April.

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Louise Lemón - Montaña

Beginning with the sombre minor chords, the melancholic piano of 'Montaña' sets up the tone of the rest of the song, which is complemented by Lemón's hauntingly powerful vocal performance. The track evokes the ethereal 70s rock of Fleetwood Mac and combines it with lyrical rawness.

Lemón explains that “this song is about not being able to let go and fall down when you find yourself in a dark moment. I wrote this when I lived in Spain and this feeling is just like an attempt to climb your highest inner mountain”. It’s taken from her debut album A Broken Heart Is An Open Heart, which will be released on the 15th March.

Stella Donnelly - Tricks

On 'Tricks' Australian artist Stella Donnelly launches a deadpan attack upon arrogance and condescending men to the backdrop of sunny guitars. The track emphasises her refusal to let anyone dampen her summery optimism. The minimalistic instrumentation, allow Donelly's vocals to take the centre stage, which enables the lyrics to pack their bittersweet punch. Her vocals possess a babydoll-like innocence that makes her cynical attack all the more powerful, as she plays into her feminine spectacle she's pushed towards.

Stella explains, “This song is a playful zoom-in on the ‘Australian Identity’ and a loose dig at the morons that used to yell sh*t at me when I played cover gigs on Sunday afternoons [...] It probably served me right for singing ‘Wonderwall’ every weekend”. Stella will be touring the UK in April, while also making an appearance at Liverpool’s Sound City. 

Squid - Houseplants

Brighton art-rockers Squid return with new single 'Houseplants' - a perennial attack upon the restrictions faced by the millennial generation. When you can't afford garden space, why not get a houseplant? “Kids are getting smarter but the rent ain't getting cheaper”, sing the band, expressing the frustration of the new generation of adults perpetually stuck in the teenage lifestyle.

Squid will play a string of festivals across the summer including Live At Leeds.

Hatchie - Without A Blush

Australian artist Hatchie returns with latest single 'Without A Blush', dipping her brush into the various palettes of pop. It's a seductive and surprisingly uplifting track on the regrets of a breakup that expresses the feeling of being in a sort of relationship purgatory. Referencing the Greek myth of Icarus (“It didn’t take too long for our wings to melt”) it captures perfectly the destructive nature of passion. Hatchie muses the difficulty of moving on from the idyllic state of a relationship and accepting that maybe it wasn’t as fond as you remember.

Hatchie will release her debut album Keepsake on 21st June. 

Guru - Suntrap

Brighton band ‘Guru’ deliver the feral ‘Suntrap’ with its sludgy guitar and raspy punk vocals expressing frustration and disappointment. The lyrics confront the difference between words and action as Tommy Cherrils quips, “We’ll offer advice with passionate pride/We’ll fix your feelings with a gamma knife”.

"'Suntrap' is a vocalisation of helplessness; a four minute flurry about how the decisions of those at the top affect those at the bottom”, explains the band. Guru will tour with Lady Bird throughout next month. 

Homesafe - Save Me

Chicago band Homesafe return with the mid-tempo alternative rock song ’Save Me’. The track is a song for those feeling helpless, as its slow-burning verses of loneliness culminate in big power choruses, it offers a brief moment of euphoria for those feeling isolated. It's also a call for unity as lead singer Ryan Rumchack's sings, "Save me, I'm calling out to you but you won't hear me".

Rumchack's states that the song "was written to remind not only ourselves, but anyone who needs to hear it, that we are not alone”. The band's debut EP One is out now.

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