The final week of January has given us some of the best tracks of the month. Given last week’s slight decline in the quality of new music, it’s great to report that this week has completely made up for it. We have a hugely diverse selection of new music from this week and we hope you enjoy. Here are our tracks of the week alongside in depth reviews:
Track of the Week: Father John Misty – “Pure Comedy”
Former Fleet Foxes Drummer Josh Tillman aka Father John Misty returns with his first track since last November. Pure Comedy is a sensational six minute track based on the faults of humanity but riddled with political metaphors following the inauguration of US President Donald Trump. Touching on human naivety, selfishness and fragility, Tillman touches on issues like gender inequality but writes it in such a way that it is both serious, clever, humorous and effortless. Musically, the track flows with elegance, climaxing with a blissful saxophone solo towards the end. The track proves that Josh Tillman may well be the most original songwriter we have currently in the world and his delivery of his tracks is so beautiful, it’s hard not to fall in love with, even if it’s about the downfall of humanity.
Rex Orange County – “Best Friend”
For those unaware of the incredibly talented Rex Orange County, he is an 18 year old singer songwriter from Haslemere, Surrey. Best Friend is his second single, a beautiful heart-on-your-sleeve track that details the rejection by a potential lover and the emotional pining that follows. Opening lyrics “I should have stayed at home / ‘Cause right now I see all these people that love me but I still feel alone” shows the longing towards talking to one specific person, rejecting the attention of family and friends. The verses of the track flow on a blissed out groove which develops into a joyous ending with trumpets and big drums. The song takes you through various stages of thought from denial to rejecting any feelings and to coming to grips with reality. It’s a stunning track from an artist that deserves to be known right now.
Circa Waves – “Fire That Burns”
The Liverpudlian four piece release the second track from their second album Different Creatures. Unlike their wonderful indie rock debut, their second album seems to be leaning towards a much heavier side. Fire That Burns is a Catfish & The Bottlemen style rock track with snippets of early Circa Waves mixed in. Chorus line “You call me a liar / You call me so innocent” roars with an intensity that we never got to see on their debut album. It’s a complete stadium anthem, destined to get crowds moving with it’s big drums from Colin Jones and an addictive guitar riff from Joe Falconer. The change in style for the band has seen them slowly shifting towards their dream of headlining festivals and if we hear more of the same, it would be a very realistic ambition to achieve.
James Blunt – “Love Me Better”
The former Army officer returns with a completely new style on track Love Me Better, his first new track since 2014. The Major Lazer style track sees Blunt move towards the current pop market with lyrics touching on his past as an artist. Lyrics “People say the meanest things / I’ve been called a dick, I’ve been called so many things” touch on various comments that the general public have said via many streams of communication. Love Me Better is dedicated to Blunt’s partner and with it’s wonderful dancehall chorus, the king of Twitter insults is back in a huge way.
Rag’n’Bone Man – “Skin”
The 2017 Brits Critics Choice Award winner Rag’n’Bone Man smashed his way into the mainstream with track Human. His latest single Skin, is poised to do the same. More upbeat than his first single, the track is an uplifting R&B grower, that is subtle in it’s piano verse but builds up into a rousing chorus talking of longevity and dedication.
Major Lazer Featuring PARTYNEXTDOOR and Nicki Minaj – “Run Up”
The dancehall kings return with their second track from upcoming album Music Is The Weapon. With help from singer PARTYNEXTDOOR and rap queen Nicki Minaj, Run Up is a chilled R&B love jam dedicated to loved ones. As a Major Lazer track, it’s more relaxed than their previous material, suggesting a more chilled vibe for the upcoming album. Nicki Minaj’s spot is a standout on the track – she seems calmer, and her verse is a shoutout to both her rise in music and to all people that they can achieve their ambitions.
Urban Cone – “Old School”
Swedish indie band Urban Cone haven’t quite made it onto the UK music radar yet but new track Old School is their big chance to break that barrier. The track is a funked out dance track with electronic off beats and a groovy The 1975 style guitar riff. The chorus has similarities to DNCE and with leading lyric “Let me love you old school” the track is a gentlemanly reminder that you can still be courteous and funky at the same time.
Luke Sital-Singh – “Killing Me”
Luke Sital-Singh has been of the most underrated artists in the world for some time now. His songs are both beautiful and emotive and new track Killing Me is no different. A heartfelt tale of love and loss, the track tackles the pain of losing a loved one and having to move on throughout life. Chorus line “And it’s killing me, that you’re not here with me / I’m living happily, but I’m feeling guilty” mix with a Kodaline and Tom Odell style piano background to top a stunningly beautiful track.
Dave & J Hus – “Samantha”
Rising London Grime MC Dave smashed both the UK and US charts with his remix of Drake’s Wanna Know. On Samantha, he teams up with fellow London rapper J Hus to create an R&B slow jam similar to that of Drake. Lyrics “I changed my number couple times / ‘Cause man kept calling me for things” explains the rise in popularity of the rapper whilst other verses combine the change in lifestyle and the difficulties faced by remaining true to himself.
Young Fathers Featuring Leith Congregational Choir – “Only God Knows”
The 2014 Mercury Prize trip-hop trio return with a gospel influenced Arcade Fire styled track. With organ, gospel backing vocals from Leith Congregational Choir and bouncing drums, the Edinburgh group touch on religion for their track which was written for T2 Trainspotting. The track is essentially a reminder that you have to do what you want to do and no one else will fully know what you want to do or what you will do. It’s an inspirational song and fits perfectly into the Trainspotting franchise.
Ásgeir – “Unbound”
The Icelandic singer songwriter retuned this week with new track Unbound as well as news of his upcoming album. This track is the first single of the upcoming album and is a beautifully blissed out electronic track mixing dancing synths with innocent and vulnerable vocals. The track is similar to the new Bon Iver works and sees the singer move into a more experimental teritory that’s less Ben Howard and more James Blake. It’s a brilliant start to what could be one of the albums to watch in 2017.
Elbow – “Gentle Storm”
The third track released from the Guy Garvey fronted band, is one of their best tracks in years. Mixing a samba drum beat with delicate piano creates a slow dance masterpiece. It has the feel of a traditional Elbow track but with elements of Jamie xx dance beats. The track is vocally stunning with opening line “I will fly swift and true to you, like an arrow / Just to be where you lie” setting a tone of romantic beauty.
Deaf Havana – “England”
The best track off of new album All These Countless Nights, England is a straight and simple rock masterpiece. Mixing elements of You Me At Six and Bring Me The Horizon, the track takes a repetitive and catchy riff and matches it with huge drums to create a brilliant wall of sound that gets carried along by singer James Veck-Gilodi’s golden vocals. With a big instrumental towards the end, the track is a refined rejection of origins and home and stands a chance at being one of the band’s most popular songs.