Singles Club #13

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Greg O’Keeffe finds fun in an Japanese Cop Shop. Or summink.


Tokyo Police Club: TessellateSingle of the Week
What a belter. In parts reminiscent of something from The Strokes under-rated classic Room on Fire, Tessellate is a rip-roaring debut from this Canadian outfit’s second LP.
It’s a short burst of growly guitars, a driving back-beat and singer Dave Monk’s nasal vocals which is structurally savvy and inherently poppy. Plus I was in the mood for vague lyrics and this definitely ticked that box.
Grammatics: D.I.L.E.M.M.A/Polar Swelling
Leeds four-piece Grammatics will justifiably raise eyebrows with this intriguing double A-side.
Both songs have unpredictable and jolty song structures but they are also easy on the ear and swathed in cello and a host of other instruments.
Neither tracks is immediately arresting but further listens reveal a density and nouse which should bode well for their debut LP.
Twisted Wheel: She’s A Weapon
I’d heard loads of good things about this lot from Oldham and built up quite a bit of expectation. So maybe I was expecting too much from this debut single.
But while it’s nice to hear a band with a healthy appreciation of Mark E Smith’s more coherent moments, She’s A Weapon is still more style than substance. Make no mistake it will go down well on the dancefloor but it’s instantly forgettable and also, disappointingly, obvious.
The Steers: Julia
Cardiff’s The Steers pitch-in with a Weller-esque, Libertines-tinged slice of sunny punk pop full of power-chords and rolling drums.
There are hints of Supergrass and Ash here too, so, in short Brit-pop nostalgiacs should give this a go. They’re also getting a good live reputation so expect more pre-festival buzz.
Efterklang: Caravan
Experimental fun and sumptuous orchestral touches from this Copenhagen five-piece. It’s not too lazy journalism to compare these sonically to fellow Scando pioneers Sigur Ros. And that’s praise indeed around these quarters.
This track, from last year’s acclaimed Parades album, is all about the voices, trumpet and electronics. Nice, happy-go-lucky stuff which is on the right side of cerebral.
iLiKETRAiNS: We Go Hunting
This critically-acclaimed Leeds outfit specialises in spine-tingling anthems and have already built up an impressive fan-base.
The term Literary-rock should have been invented for them.
This track, recalling the chaos and paranoia of the Salem witch trials in Massachusetts in 1692, uses their usual blueprint of soundtracking a historical tragedy.
It was recorded in an old chapel and mixed by Sigur Ros pal Ken Thomas.
So basically, you’ve got a dark and brooding band who use quirky and sad tales of history for lyrical inspiration instead of failed romance or drug-trips. Genuinely interesting stuff which deserves credit for being different.

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