In a week seemingly full of collaboration and spoken word songs, Getintothis’ Chris Burgess take us through some political, psychedelic and spellbinding musical witchcraft.
Serpent Power: Last Ape in Space – Single of the Week
An intriguing collaboration between The Coral singer Ian Skelly and Paul Molloy from The Zutons, Serpent Power seem to be about as psychedelic as it gets.
The track whirrs and spins, with some excellent drumming and magnificent melodies to be found amid the cluttered chaos.
The video, drawn by Skelly himself is a blur of refreshingly old school animation, with monsters, demons and a really grumpy owl all in attendance.
Their debut album is out next week on Skeleton Key Records.
The Pop Group/Sleaford Mods: Split 7”
Ahead of their upcoming May 11 Kazimier gig, the post-punkers The Pop Group have gotten together with agit-prop duo Sleaford Mods to put out a split single.
The Pop Group’s offering, Nations, is taken from Citizen Zombie, their recently acclaimed album, and could be from either of the two bands. A spoken, stream of consciousness tune, vocalist Mark Stewart gives a vague critique of something or other – probably political – as the band rattle along beneath him.
The Sleaford Mods give us Face to Faces, an alternate version of the track from their upcoming new album. It’s typical Mods, you either love them or hate them. James Williamson ranting about something or other – definitely political – as Andrew Fearn’s bass and beats rattle along beneath him.
Bernard & Edith: Heartache
With their debut album Jem set for release next month, the Mancunian duo have given us Heartache, a slow build of a song that taxis along the runway for a while before taking off suddenly.
It’s a gloriously arranged tune, with beats and synths swirling around and singer Greta “Edith” Caroll’s vocals evoking Kate Bush at times.
The accompanying video is set in a strange bubble world, apparently. Or more likely a cling film warehouse.
They play the Bombed Out Church on Light Night on Friday May 15. More details here.
Eccentronic Research Council ft Maxine Peake: Welcome to Valhalla Dale
Must be the week of spoken singles and collaborations, as Shameless star Maxine Peake teams up with ERC to deliver one of the most British tracks Singles Club has ever heard.
ERC are Adrian Flanagan of The Chanteuse & The Crippled Claw, and Dean Horner of Sheffield electronic band All Seeing I, and first met Peake when they approached her to appear in one of their music videos.
Their album, 1612 Underture, from which this single is taken, is a tribute of sorts to the Pendle witches, a group from Newchurch who were rounded up and tried for witchcraft in the 15th century. The track itself is full of sorcery, as Peake’s excellently delivered vocals are underpinned by ERC’s dark and haunting synth madness.
With a new album Konnichiwa on the horizon for later in the year, Skepta has been pretty busy of late. Joined at SXSW by the A$AP Mob, he has also collaborated with the likes of Flatbush Zombies and Wiki from Ratking, as well as joining Kanye West onstage at the BRIT Awards.
Shutdown gives the London MC and producer chance to demonstrate his raw flow, which makes seem effortless.
Hot Chip: Burning Up
Hot Chip have returned with a new album Why Make Sense? and this new, non-album track.
Burning Up builds as it goes, chiming and bright, with Alexis Taylor’s heavily autotuned vocals adding a robotic air to proceedings. It’s a delightful and entrancing song, trailing away beautifully towards the end.
Astronomyy feat. Denai Moore: All I Need
Soon to play Sound City, Astronomyy has dropped the video for his new track All I Need, a song full of love and loss.
The track is laid back and sumptuous, with tick-tock beats and evocative vocal harmonies.
Londoners M.E.L have dropped this rather soulful and minimalistic tune ahead of their debut EP launch later this year. Changed is a very laid back and sparsely arranged track.
Melissa Erpen’s voice is sultry and ethereal, telling a tale of moving away from the materialistic.
The Barr Brothers: Burn Card
Montreal’s The Barr Brothers have released a new EP – Alta Falls – ahead of their forthcoming album proper, Sleeping Operator.
Think of the EP as a nice ‘offcuts’, full of tracks that didn’t quite fit the album. They’re well worth listening to in their own right, none more so than the marvellously sung Burn Card – a pure slice of Americana folk.
Spotify users can listen to the full EP here. The band support Calexico at the Philharmonic Hall on 1 May.