With so much great new music coming our way daily, again we’ve compiled our favourites into an easily accessible format, aptly titled: #BitterSweetPlaylist. The idea is, once fully consumed, everyone has their shot at voting for their favourite track by means of the poll at the bottom of the page. We’ll tally up the votes and the winning act will get an in-depth feature. Spread the word, let’s make this thing huge.
Voting closes on 25th February 2017.
Her’s ‘Speed Racer’
Liverpool-based Her’s slide right onto the dancefloor with their first bit of new music this year, ‘Speed Racer’ is a bullet of ear-to-ear cheer. Drum machine lays the law for head-bopping and hand-clapping to ensue, juicy bass lines glide like a butter knife over and under lappings of iridescent guitar licks. A majestic turn of events for Her’s.
Bokito ‘Better At Getting Worse’
Think Clean Cut Kid’s Mike Halls fronting Bombay Bicycle Club and you’ll find the ultra-poppy slice of alt-indie from London-via-Ireland’s Bokito. A revelatory invigoration of all those good feels set to a insatiable samba-like rhythm, this twining of African influences and contemporary indie is genius, never allowing us a minute to let up from the all-out dance party that begins from the get-go. This is a fierce schooling in how to debut your band. Catch Bokito at this year’s Great Escape Festival.
Ascot’s Febueder tantalise on ‘Chimes’, a Maccabees-cum-Francis Lung stomp. The bass guitar featured on this track is stunning, its moves are completely unpredictable and varied, filling the first bars with an unprecedented flurry of excitement. As Febueder march further onwards, guitars and percussion lead in formation inviting a funky rhythm to form, and Kieran Godfrey’s impassioned call to resonate in a charmed serendipitous manner.
Born Stranger ‘Cheating Love’ (feat. Caitlyn Scarlett)
We love a good collaboration, especially when it prompts a duelling of male/female vocals, which is exactly the mandate here from Born Stranger. Bringing in the sublime vocal talents of Caitlyn Scarlett, ‘Cheating Love’ is a bouncing EDM banger that tells of bad choices in romance. Turn this one up.
Nathan Ball ‘Cold Hands’
Oozing intrigue, Nathan Ball’s latest effort ‘Cold Hands’ is a brooding lament to living life on your dime. The track offers up a melodic dose of advice, Ball pleading: “Don’t listen to him, girl / just take it from me”, depending on your viewpoint, this is either sincerely heartfelt or a forceful dictation. It’s left open for different readings but if we’re to take Ball’s candour at face value, then I’d happily believe it’s the former.
Team Picture ‘Back To Bay Six’
This Leeds band revel in the holy patronage of the distortion pedal, the fuzzier the better. Gearing their noise-rock to sweeter climes on ‘Back to Bay Six’, we have sugared melody that would make even the Powerpuff Girls swoon, twisting dynamics, faultless vocal lines and probably the most memorable interlocking guitar patterns you’ll find in new music today, this is finished off by a proggy shoegaze simmer that accentuates the six-piece’s growing prowess as musicians. Team Picture are another band that are well worth seeing in the flesh to fully appreciate.
LICE ‘Little John Waynes’
A dignified affair, that’s if you black out the telling hints of insanity readying to peak its nasty head. Bristol’s LICE are a brilliant find, slurring the fantastic sleaze of Fat White Family with the head rush lusciousness of The Fall. On record, whilst slightly more subdued than in person, the biting callous of disenchantment still roars strong. ‘Little John Wayne’ delivers beaten down blues to a punk attitude.
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Lucky Shivers ‘Human By Night’
The Pixies-esque cut debuts Lucky Shivers’ alternative trappings of lo-fi pop, the space odyssey recalls 90’s indie in its raw conception and nonchalant approach. With harmonies that echo that of Kim Deal ringing out over the chorus, the guitars that dip in and out of the periphery are a reminder of Bowie’s ‘Heroes’. Lucky Shivers demonstrate a joyful introverted format for self-exploration.
Since we first heard the free spirited Californian’s evocative R&B pop, we’ve been hooked. A tastemakers darling with more than enough commercial appeal to break through to the masses, sounding as slick as Usher‘s famed dance moves and The Weeknd‘s soulful productions. Lostboycrow is the real deal and don’t we know it, ‘Verona’ has it all – snaking dancehall swagger, gleaming falsetto vocals and intensity of conviction. Another huge jam from our favourite ‘Lost boy’.
The Shimmer Band ‘Jacknife & the Death Call’
Bristol’s The Shimmer Band are starting their own scene, already heavily backed by This Feeling, BBC Introducing and Radio X. Their approach to modern indie rock isn’t for the weak hearted, combining a style of epic tropes that pulls together electronic influences, guitar focussed theatrics and the glacial. Focusing in on a more refined palette than their releases have shown thus far, ‘Jacknife & the Death Call’ sounds like a band that have grown up in the age of genre blending, its ambition speaks volumes about the five-piece. Consistently rising through the live scene, The Shimmer Band have their sights set on greater pastures but will play every last show on their way to the top like it’s their crowning glory.
The winning artist will be treated to a grilling in our ‘Many Things About…’ segment, which works to uncover all those pesky little fun facts that we don’t know about them already, so get voting and make your artist proud (if not slightly nervous)!
Listen to previous winner Ludvig Moon with their song ‘Sparks’ below.