As the month of love (and pancakes) comes to a close, the Getintothis team look back on the best new tracks February has whipped up.
There are more bands around these days. We don’t need some jumped-up marketing dickhead using buzz-terms like “market oversaturation” and various slogans which reach the same conclusion to tell us this. Like bands, there are more barbers, accountants, lawyers, the rich, the poor and, you guessed it, more clones of the aforementioned marketing dickhead. You name it, there’s more of it.
Accessibility has never been so prominent, feeding into the mentality of instant gratification and the need for everything now. Again, this is not breaking news. These modern day attitudes have shaped a landscape where it has never been so hard for artists, both new and old, to make ends meet. The majority actually don’t and with the severe lack of third party funding, most have to offset their artistic visions by holding down a day job and notwithstanding sheer luck, most of these employment endeavours are of the soul destroying variety, further impinging on an individual’s creative process.
Contextualising this scenario, I believe it spikes the vein of that well-known race to the bottom. Just work, pay your bills and thank your lucky stars that you have a job. If you’re fortunate you’ll retire at 70 (probably 75 or 80 by the time many of us attempt to reach that point) – whereby some life ending illness isn’t too far away from claiming you as its next victim. But at least you’ll have worked, maybe have owned a house and enjoyed the pleasures of the illustrious package holiday.
Doom and gloom enough?
But still. There are more artists. Those who primarily won’t settle for the rigid every day. If you want to make some music or breathe life into a character through either the written word or on screen then it’s quite simple. Do it! I dare you! I totally get that most are happy to settle for the above. It doesn’t make you a lesser person than someone who aspires for a little bit extra.
Those who do want a little bit more shouldn’t be frowned upon, though. Whether you lay bricks in the ball-tightening cold, tear your hair out crunching numbers in an office all day or work in some other godforsaken industry that seems ideologically opposed to creativity. Art should never discriminate and if you’re passionate and purely driven about an idea then stop pissing about telling your mates and start acting on these impulses! What’s stopping you? Please don’t say your Twitter feed. That’s a piss poor excuse.
We all have self-doubt. The what ifs. It’s natural. The ebbs and flows of ambition and creativity feed this emotion and yes, the ebbs almost feel like the end of the world, but you would never have arrived at this point without creating something in the first place. That’s the flow and the very reason that many keep going and, believe it or not, actually choose to exist. It’s a part of the make-up of many. That’s self-worth. Don’t let the malaise of social media get you down. There are always negative people waiting to bring you down. Again, that’s 2018 and the world we live in.
Charles Bukowski once said that “The problem with the world is that the intelligent people are full of doubts, while the stupid ones are full of confidence.” So much has changed in this world since the turn of the century. Why not tip the axis of this notion, too? It’s about time, right?
Bukowski also said that you must “find what you love and let it kill you.” These bands noted below. Well, perhaps it’s their start. Isn’t it time for other budding artists to follow suit? I know you’re out there. Start getting involved. Simon Kirk
Tom Anderson – Stranger At The Door
Singer-songwriter-producer and Liverpool University graduate Tom Anderson is making a strong
entrance with his brand new single Stranger At The Door, an unapologetically soulful pop
The vibes are strong and original, featuring some groovy vocal chops and a fantastically simple
arrangement that makes the song really shine, along with his softly delivered vocals
bearing a vague resemblance to a cleaner and less self-involved Chris Martin.
Tom Anderson has quite a future, given his ability to play so many different roles in his own
work, anyone would guess that he had an entire team behind him, when in reality he is a
completely self-sufficient solo act. We will be waiting eagerly for the next single from him – in the
meantime, grooving out to this one.
- Stephen Geisler
Tuscan Sun – Blame
Tuscan Sun transport us to their namesake or indeed to a balmy summer festival with new track Blame.
Released seemingly by themselves from home recordings, the teenage duo hailing from Blackpool currently have two tracks online with the promise of more huge sounds on the way this year.
Blame blends electronic drum beats and effervescent, sparkling synth and guitar sounds with nonchalant vocals. Think a mix of The 1975’s Settle Down, Menswear & Loving Someone along with the very catchy lyrics of ‘If you fall I’ll take the blame, but I don’t think you’d do the same.’ It’s dark moody pop turned into a summer festival anthem with hazy neon flowers.
- Lucy McLachlan
The Jjohns – So Alone
The Jjohns‘ new single So Alone is a right belter. The track, which has a catchy chorus, a killer hook and some cracking melodies, especially during the instrumental at around 2:08, is tightly produced by Sugar House Productions and will remind listeners just how good guitar music can be.
So Alone clearly takes inspiration from 90s-era heroes and Merseybeat sounds such as Cast, The Coral, Oasis, The La’s, The Roses and The Beatles, all while cementing The Jjohns’ own contemporary spin on the vibe. These lively Liverpool lads put to bed all the noise and rubbish about rock & roll being dead. And with the lines, ‘I’m in the bar, I hear our song, the melody just lingers on, don’t wanna hear us no more, no more, no more’ you’ll be wishing you were in a field somewhere, necking a can of Strongbow, bouncing along while basking in the sunshiiiine!
- Amy Farnworth
Emilio Pinchi – High Times
The latest track from Emilio Pinchi, High Times, is a typically optimistic, fragile number, fit to match the turn of cold, dark nights into lighter spring days. A gentle intro leads to melodic duo vocals and talk of dreaming in colour.
He speaks about enjoying the day-to-day rather than obsessing over huge narratives of conflict, allowing yourself to revel in candour, enjoying simple interactions. A change in tone to a conversational section does exactly what it says, making the listener a fly on the wall, focussing on lyrics rather than melody. High Times would fit best on a festival banking – just one listen and of this song and you’re there.
- Lewis Ridley
Adwaith – Fel I Fod
Last year’s single Femme packed a bop along feminist punch, the lyrics providing a hidden slap around the head, but new double A-side by Adwaith – Hollie Singer, Gwenllian Anthony and Heledd Owen – shows more of the trio’s potency and palette.
Fel I Fod is a fragile shimmer of a song, or at least that’s what we’re tricked into thinking, at first. The thump-thump of the drums give us the nod it’s to grow bold soon enough. And it does, getting braver, louder, and more beautiful. Ironic because, Hollie says, ‘This song is about being afraid. Afraid of being stuck. Afraid of being comfortable somewhere I don’t think I belong. It’s about realising you’ll be okay even if you don’t feel okay all the time.’
Flip side Newid kicks the door open with discordant guitars and a dark, worrying spoken word segment. It’s brave and in your face and bloody great. Adwaith, ‘just sistas doing it for themselves’, are turning out to be a rather thrilling proposition.
- Cath Bore
Evil Pink Machine – 164MPH
Igor Delgado Martin wasn’t about to let an elbow injury quell his creative fire, unwillingly, albeit temporarily putting down the guitar and delving into a world of psychedelic electronica; the Liverpool-based talent harnesses an exciting, unique fusion of sound.
164MPH struts straight out of the 80’s, arpeggiated synths creep into earshot like the Stranger Things opening theme, before a clash of jangling chords replicate The Strokes’ 80’s charged record, Angles.
His resemblances to Casablancas and co. don’t end there, either. Martin’s vocal is charged with gravelly fuzz, adding texture and energy and all of a sudden you‘re in the passenger seat of a roaring machine, the lights have turned to green and Martin is in full control, steering into a spine-tingling solo before screeching to a satisfying finale.
- Matthew Wood
Charity Shop Pop – Tropical
There’s something about this track that draws you in and before you’re aware, has you drifting away on its ambient, meandering vibe.
Charity Shop Pop is the solo project of Ormskirk boy next door, David Hughes. Tropical is primarily an experimental, synthesised mix of electronic sounds, beats and lolloping vocals that appear to have been recorded the other side of a closed bathroom door, whilst made in the bath. But don’t let that put you off.
The song itself laments the time-honoured male blunder of pining for all those out-of-reach girls, when the right one for you was there all the time – and probably living next door!
Planning to release one track per month, this is Charity Shop Pop’s latest instalment. A thoroughly decent pop tune and well worth your attention.
- Mark Rowley
Bang On – Young + Cool
Bang On, aka Elliot Egerton, is back with a brand new track that will make you sorry he’s ever been away. Having grabbed a GIT Award Nomination in 2012 and been featured as one of the musicians to have shaped Merseyside’s music scene in the Getintothis 101, it’s fair to say that as a team, we’re fans.
His latest track Young + Cool, released on Blah Records and produced by Drae Da Skimask, begins with some simple notes and the title’s telling phrase ‘Yeah I’m young, cool’. It soon plunges into a submersive whirlpool leaving you wondering where it will end up, before setting in with the beat but refusing to be steady. Given that the track comes from his latest album titled The Power Of Not Being Arsed, it’s fitting that Young + Cool dances in between different tempos of languidness, making each listen sound fresh.
- Lauren Wise
Rivers of Nihil – The Silent Life
Rivers of Nihil are back with their highly anticipated third album, Where Owls Know My Name, out via the legendary Metal Blade Records on March 16, and with it they bring an epic new single, The Silent Life.
This is six and a half minutes of some of the most melodic yet simultaneously brutal material they have written to date. Make no mistake, this is Rivers of Nihil through and through.
The familiar detuned chugging riffs and discordant ambience are in full effect, but are now also complemented by powerful guitar leads and a soulful saxophone solo, that comes completely out of nowhere in the best kind of way.
- Mark Davies
St Jude The Obscure – Wings Like Icarus
Wings Like Icarus, the latest offering from St. Jude The Obscure, is a slow burn of a track. A nostalgic elegy to friendship and loss, the pull of this song lies in its sparse instrumentation and the delicate poetry evoked in Adéle Emmas songwriting.
As with their previous projects Birds and Feral Love, both musicians (Emmas and Christian Sandford) excel at creating an ambience that is hauntingly austere, with Emmas’ voice a meditative whisper, punctuated by weighty pauses that allow the words to really seep in. So yes, this is a slow burn. It’s also sombre, pensive, and beautiful.
- Orla Foster
Berries – Faults
The Runaways have risen, and they’ve been reincarnated in the form of London-based three piece Berries. Chugging guitar riffs and anticipated heavy choruses are the order of the day with Berries’ latest release, Faults.
Their alternative/rock sound is easy to get on board with – and easy to put on repeat. Refrain ‘Thank God you have no faults to tame’ sounds sarcastically optimistic, and matched with their punk-like spirit it’s only fitting that sarcasm plays a part lyrically.
We can only be excited for their next trip to Liverpool, as it’s a surety just from listening to their latest release that their on stage enthusiasm will create a riot of a gig – beers, sweat and mosh pits guaranteed.
- Lauren Wise