Who can predict when and where new talent is going to come from? This week has seen the return of some of the world’s most revered artists but this has almost been overlooked by the sheer quality of releases from up and coming talent from around the world. Here are our track’s of the week with in depth reviews.
Track of the Week: Royal Blood – “Lights Out”
UK rock duo Royal Blood made their highly anticipated return this week with track Lights Out, the first single from their upcoming second album How Did We Get So Dark? From the album’s carnal opening, it’s clear that the duo are not straying from the intensity of their debut album. Line “You’re a cage, won’t you let me in” sums up the carnal atmosphere that the song creates whilst the chorus screams are reminiscent of the stadium friendly rock from Kasabian. The track’s drop thunders with brute strength, taking a heavier development of The White Stripes. Mike Kerr’s vocals carry a confident swagger throughout whereas Ben Thatcher’s stunning thundering drum break paired with an addictive guitar line in the instrumental create a track that somehow manages to sound even bigger than anything on the band’s debut album.
TLC Feat. Snoop Dogg – “Way Back”
This week sees the return of iconic 90’s R&B group TLC with track Way Back. Right from the beginning, the track transports you to Californian summer. Thanks to funds raised via a Kickstarter campaign, the group decided to make a final album which they stated will keep true to their sound. As the first track released from the album, it’s clear to see that the group are keeping to their word. The track’s infectious, slow yet purposeful R&B vibe runs through the track, which sees the group reminiscing on their past. With a verse from Snoop Dogg that sees the rapper back to his finest, you have to pinch yourself to think you’ve not been transported back to the 90’s.
Bloxx – “You”
Bloxx are a band you might be unaware of but after listening to new single You, it’s clear to see that their popularity could rapidly increase very soon. The Uxbridge four piece take similarities from Wolf Alice but add a touch more grunge to create a piece of indie pop that somehow sounds glisteningly refined yet ruffled and tough. The track itself is an honest reflexion on a past relationship that sees singer Fee Booth, pondering on what she could’ve done differently to keep the relationship going. With drum rolls, thrashing guitar and commanding vocals, the track is a stunning reminder that guitar rock is not dead.
Leo Stannard Feat. Frances – “Gravity”
British singer songwriter Leo Stannard has been slowly making a name for himself as a songwriter with a natural ability to resonate with listeners. His gorgeous tone is infectious and latest track Gravity looks set to see him break into the mainstream. The track is a love song that highlights the importance of an individual, with delicate acoustic guitar which rises into a soaring love-filled chorus. The unique hush of Frances adds another layer of warmth to the already glowing track. Together, the pair conjure beautiful harmonies which give the intricate track a sense of intimacy that resonates far and wide.
PWR BTTM – “LOL”
Gender fluid US duo PWR BTTM are one of the most unique band’s in the world at the moment. Their modern take on punk is almost as iconic as their image and track LOL sees the band at their most honest, detailing insecurities and trying to understand what they feel. Lines “I know that I am naive / When you are queer, you are always 19 / I didn’t know you could take such a shape” show the struggle to understand sexuality and image whilst musically, the duo take a chilled, rolling guitar melody before wild thrashing guitars enter the frame on what is by far one of the best rock track’s of 2017.
Sarah Close – “Caught Up”
Isle of Wight based singer songwriter Sarah Close has gained huge internet popularity through a variety of YouTube covers. Caught Up is the debut single from the artist’s first EP, which sees the singer humorously complaining about a guy who she’s been dating a few times and now doesn’t want a relationship with him. It’s electro-pop Kate Nash at its finest, combining the poppy side of Carly Rae Jepson with the wit and lyricism of Kate Nash. YouTube artists have in the past gathered a reputation for trying to be pop wannabe’s but Sarah Close has the potential to standout as her own, unique artist.
QTY – “Ornament”
Get yourselves poised for New York duo QTY, who look set to become the next breakthrough band from NYC. Intriguing melodies contrast with the grunge styled thrash of guitars whilst Dan Lardner’s vulnerable Charlie Fink-esque vocals add some sensitivity to the Lou Reed styled swagger that the band conjure. Line “A community where a handshake is gambling” highlights the paranoid vibe that flickers at moments in the track. Alex Niemetz’s vocals add a soothing quality to the track that details life’s struggles and the battle to improve yourself. Altogether, it’s a stunning piece of songwriting and musicality, which stays unique and true to New York’s past rock giants.
SuperGlu – “Simmer Down”
Suffolk pop punk four piece SuperGlu are one of the biggest rising band’s in the country, having headlined Reading and Leeds BBC Introducing Stage in 2016 and having gained huge support from DJ Huw Stephens. Latest track Simmer Down starts with a delicate acoustic verse and Fleet Foxes styled folk backing vocals. The track develops into an intricate rock track which later builds into a powerful statement of intent which tackles personal insecurities. There is no doubt on the potential that SuperGlu have as a band and we look forward to hearing more from them this year.
Noah Cyrus – “Stay Together”
As the younger sister to one of the world’s most controversial pop stars, you might think Noah Cyrus would want to steer clear of the spotlight that’s been thrust into the face of the Cyrus family. However, her latest single Stay Together is a signal that she’s ready to follow in the musical path of Miley. The track is a living in the moment anthem that follows Noah recalling a night out. Similar to Miley’s Party in the USA, Stay Together is a wonderful feel good track that takes friendship and unity to new places.
Anteros – “Cherry Drop”
Rising London alternative rock four piece Anteros are another band who have added themselves to the ever increasing list of London band’s to watch out for. Latest single Cherry Drop is a chaotic, thriller of a rock song right from the beginning. Its bouncing guitar riff allows for vocalist Laura Hayden to display her full range throughout the track. With similarities to Estrons, Anteros are a band you need to watch out for.
Linkin Park Feat. Pusha T and Stormzy – “Good Goodbye”
The third single from Linkin Park’s upcoming sixth album One More Light sees the Nu metal titans enlisting the help of current rap superstars Pusha T and Stormzy. Good Goodbye continues the band’s poppier, mainstream direction with its simplicity musically. Lyrically, the track details the end of a relationship and the relief that it’s finally over with lines like “You better have some place to go / ‘Cause you can’t come back around here.” With the track’s anthemic pop rock chorus reminiscent of Imagine Dragons’ Radioactive, the song sees Mike Shinoda, Pusha T and Stormzy all shining in their verses. Shinoda’s line “Blindly forgetting if I’m in the mix” hits out at the lack of rap on the first two Linkin Park tracks from the new album whilst Stormzy’s verse sees the rapper turning away from gang life and depression whilst recalling his roots. It’s a uniquely different collaboration from all artists points of view but somehow comes together into an anthemic rock track.
Blood Red Shoes – “Eye To Eye”
Laura-Mary Carter and Steven Ansell together make up alternative rock duo Blood Red Shoes. This week sees the band releasing Eye To Eye, their first track in three years, which with its dark and slinking bass line and synths, sees a more menacing approach from the duo. Carter’s vocals snarl with intent from the beginning and soon rises to a hypnotic and seductive climax.
DNCE Feat. Nicki Minaj – “Kissing Strangers”
Joe Jonas’s crazily funky band of misfits return for the first time in 2017 with Kissing Strangers, a stylish pop track which sees Jonas merrily skipping around one night stands in the search for a relationship. Line “Aye, oh you trying to find connection in two thousand something ain’t easy” refers to how modern technology has changed social interaction and dating whilst the track’s Na na na styled chorus is infectious even for the band’s high standards. Nicki Minaj’s guest verse flows with glamour and ease and fires more shots at her rap rivals whilst the track’s slinking baseline make’s for a gloriously fun listen.
Other Noticeable Tracks
Lethal Bizzle Feat. Skepta – “I Win”: Two of grime’s heavyweight artists combine on a huge new anthem for the genre which celebrates the success of both the artists’ as well as the genre itself.
John Gibbons – “P.Y.T (Pretty Young Thing)”: Irish DJ John Gibbons revitalises the Michael Jackson classic with more bass, synths and glistening effects to create a perfect summer anthem for the 21st century.
Lindsey Buckingham & Christine McVie – “In My World”: Fleetwood Mac legends unite for their first collaborative work since 1987 on catchy, relaxed track which with its intricate guitar, is reminiscent of Rumours era Fleetwood Mac.
Soulé – “Troublemaker”: Dublin singer Soulé releases addictive tropical infused pop track which takes bouncy synths, effects and vocal repetitions to make one perfectly catchy single.
Fyfe Feat. Kimbra – “Belong”: Addictive, punchy electronic track from electronic artist Fyfe which uses euphoric synths and vocals from New Zealand born Kimbra to create an accomplished and warm single.
Frank Ocean Feat. Jay-Z and Tyler, The Creator – “Biking”: Cyclical new track from three US heavyweights that flows in various directions yet still somehow is about bicycles.
CAZZETTE Feat. Jones – “Handful of Gold”: Chilled summer vibes run through the latest track from Swedish house duo CAZZETTE which features a unique brass drop and the warm vocals of JONES.
Alessia Cara – “The Other Side”: Canadian singer songwriter moves forward in life on theatrical ballad which continues to rise throughout before reaching a glorious climax.