With Summer now well and truly upon, Getintothis contributors pick out 12 scorching new tracks to soundtrack your BBQs.
Music’s pretty damn good, isn’t it?
AJHD – Twelve Years
Delivering his first new music in several years, AJHD plumbs the darkness of psych-folk, all depths of reverb and revelling in its mysteriously haunting atmosphere. AJHD‘s latest Cohenian lament is a beautiful slice of uplifting dirge, full of mournful acoustic fingerpicking and lovelorn lyrics.
Though the shroud of gloom that hangs over Twelve Years is black as a witch’s brew, it’s not all despair and doom as vocal harmonies and a tiptoeing piano accompaniment pierce the stark atmosphere in the track’s second half.
It’s equally spaced out and immediate, poetic enough to connote the feeling that a half-finished cigarette is still smoking in an ashtray at AJHD‘s right elbow. But that the wooden-floored room it smokes in has no walls. And it’s in a woodland clearing.
- David Hall
Wildfires – Heartbeat
Wildfires are a five piece alternative pop band from Liverpool. After only forming in June this year they have brought us a little slice of what is to come in the form of their debut single Heartbeat.
This track has all the making of being a summer anthem with its catchy pop melody and tight vocal harmonies and it’s been stuck in my head since I heard it. Wildfires remind me of fellow Liverpool band Clean Cut Kid and if their success is anything to go by this band will have a bright future.
If this is just a snapshot of what this band can do I can’t wait to hear what they release next.
- Sarah Pitman
Remée – Gunshot Love
The LIMF Academy stage is always a must for spotting up and coming talent and almost always provides the perfect summer vibes via a combination of youth, fresh music and enthusiasm.
Remée who will be appearing on the stage on Sunday July 23 pretty much ticks all boxes. Following in the footsteps of MiC Lowry and Taya, they have all found their unique styles through working with the Positive Impact (PI) organisation and honed their art into something quite special. Gunshot Love shows a voice that straddles both powerful and fragile in one swoop, illustrating perfectly the beautiful lyrics and tones of the song.
Imagine hearing this, lying on one of those LIMF beanbags in the sun, with a cool drink in your hand and you may be halfway to paradise. On the strength of this tune alone it would be hard to deny Remée’s new found status as LIMF Academy’s Most Ready, and it will be a joy to see where this role takes her. Good luck Remée.
- Del Pike
Jalen N’Gonda – Why I Try
Hailing from Maryland and residing in Liverpool, Jalen N’Gonda is a completely fresh burst of energy in the music scene. From supporting Martha Reeves and The Vandellas to being part of LIMF Academy 2015, Jalen N’Gonda keeps going from strength to strength.
This can be best shown through his latest single Why I Try, the soothing melodies and hypnotic beats take influence from classic soul singles but manage to sound refreshing and modern with the strong vocals and catchy lyrics you will be singing out of nowhere.
With a summer filled with festival dates, UK and USA, his sets will be ones that you won’t want to miss out on, so you can dance your cares away.
- Jess Borden
Dead Houses – Bundy
Dead Houses are an enigma. Sparingly doing the social media thing and last appearing here on Getintothis with a blistering 1:30 min blast of a car crash tune called i_SCULPT_myself. They’re back with a much more family friendly, but sweary nonetheless, single – Bundy.
It’s kind of psych meets metal California in an angry fashion. The guitars are cool and the anger bleeds out. It’s a song for the winter to curl up to. The summer heat doesn’t hit it.
- Peter Goodbody
Vain Male – Until I Heard You Speak
It’s a pretty brave endeavour being a songwriter, especially taking those first steps.
What you write about, and how you do it is very much a soul-bearing experience and judgement is instant. No prisoners are taken. It’s hardly surprising then, that so many like to wrap up their opening salvos with layers of washed textures and effects to hide behind.
Take Vain Male – ‘This is my first song,’ he informs us on his bandcamp before confessing, “Lost myself again somewhere in the middle, never was a friend and played second best.“
Those opening words are indicative of the tone, melody and feel of Until I Heard You Speak, a song so brittle you feel it could disintegrate upon first listen; it’s fragility is what makes it so beautiful. You can’t help but be drawn to it’s lonesome swoon.
Yet songwriter Liam Evans is no absolute beginner. Chief of rising ragged rock n rollers Shrinking Minds, Evans is on bi-polar form to his usual duties thrashing away with his bandmates; for Vain Male is all about cute electronic drum pads, twinkling guitars and barely-awake vocals.
His latest offering This Isn’t Getting Any Better is a more sprightly affair driven by 80s emotive melancholia and a bigger dreamy chorus. But it’s still drenched in an aching sadness that’s brilliantly effecting.
He plays Liverpool International Music Festival‘s Academy Stage on Sunday July 23, we’d suggest you join us in being there.
- Peter Guy
Joseph Mott – The Seasons
Like a fine piece of carefully constructed and handmade furniture, Liverpool’s Joseph Mott has merged the essence of 1970s singer-songwriters with the sound of electronic music from right here and now.
On The Seasons, everything fits together so neatly you can’t really see where the joints are and where one thing starts and another thing ends.
This is a piece of music which is made to be heard on long summer nights or an August morning as dawn is breaking and the grass underfoot is still wet with early morning dew. Or as summer turns to autumn and the leaves tumble gently from the trees. Or as you hurry home on a January evening with snow swirling through yellowing street lights.
It’s the seasons. All in one track.
- Rick Leach
Life in Sweatpants – Girls
It’s proved pretty difficult finding out any information at all on newcomers Life In Sweatpants. With sparse social media pages, no photographs and only the one track released, in the form of debut single Girls, Life In Sweatpants remain an enigma.
But none of this really matters, as long as they keep putting out tracks of this quality.
Girls is the perfect introduction to their slick production, finely tuned electronic sound and arrives just in time to be added to Summer playlists. Pulsating synths bounce atop drum machine beats and affected vocals making for an instantly catchy, dreamy sound.
- Adam Lowerson
Average Sex – We’re Done
Hailing from London, Average Sex have a sound not to dissimilar of that coming out of California. Those of the Wavves and Best Coast persuasion to be more precise.
Their own spin on ‘stoner rock’ feels far more relaxed and assured of itself than across the pond, like that cool kid in school who just sat there and made everyone else look like a copy and paste pupil.
They tell a tale of what some might say is a rather riotous relationship, if even a whiff of it is true then each live show would definitely be memorable.
The title suggests the track would be filled with anger, the lyrics certainly match that but the tune wouldn’t go amiss over a road trip scene from a coming-of-age film.
Saying that, they have the sound of a band that could easily have the whole venue on the same groove wavelength, certainly they will satisfy no matter what you’re looking for.
- Nathan Scally
Bill Nickson – Polaroids
Clocking in at just two and a half minutes long, Bill Nickson‘s new track Polaroids centres itself around a cyclical lo-fi piano melody, heavy on the reverb and subtly delivered. A tale of love lost, its sound is often reminiscent of Beck‘s earlier work: its a very simple affair and almost feels like a demo in parts.
There’s a clear country folk leaning in this piece, and the additional vocals of Hannah Handley add to that. Ultimately though, the song struggles to find its way.
It doesn’t feel, or sound, like the finished article, and after a stop halfway through, it seems to wander aimlessly through the reverb soup, towards an indeterminate almost apologetic end, which leaves us thinking this could’ve grown into something much better. There’s certainly promise there, but not this time, it seems.
- Paul Fitzgerald
Reality Goggles – Go Whistle
Following in the footsteps of Outfit bandmate Andrew Hunt who has impressed with his side project Dialect, Nick Hunt brings us his debut solo EP in the form of Reality Goggles.
Sounding worlds away from the more pop sounds of Outfit, Reality Goggles sees Hunt experimenting with and showing us some completely different influences, which can be heard in lead single Go Whistle.
Built around a motorik, krautrock inspired beat, the warped, discordant electronic sounds give the feel of early Sci-Fi sound effects – or alternatively, like the Clangers on pills – making for a uncomfortable yet mesmerising listen.
Reality Goggles is clearly a chance for Hunt to flex his creative muscles, and with great results. The full EP is a must listen.
- Adam Lowerson
Disastronauts – Majora
After conquering festivals like Threshold and Smithdown, alongside most Liverpool venues in the past year or so, Disastronauts have thoroughly crossed the checklist of places to play and things to do for a rising act to be on its way to becoming a household name.
To kick off their second chapter the band has brought out their second single Majora which sees their playfully post-grunge style adapt a more serious outlook without betraying their originality and specialty.
As you’d expect from a track of the style, Majora packs a raw energy with familiar songwriting style and to top it all off – a very memorable chorus. On the other hand, the vocal lines show notable influence of the styles familiar to the North-West like post-punk, and Madchester.
Imagine processing the 90s in a musical blender and garnishing with some modern freshness, and there you have it – Disastronaut’s Majora.
- Amaan Khan