Charli XCX – London Queen
Arriving as the latest single to be released from Charli XCX’s forthcoming album Sucker, ‘London Queen’ sparkles with pop glamour and glitz. Full of big personality, much like the singer herself, ‘London Queen’ discusses and celebrates the experiences of living as a Britain in the USA.
Bursting with attitude and sharp sounds, Charli XCX’s newest single simply screams out enjoyment and excitement from the open. Using both dominant guitar and synthesiser sounds which complement each other excellently, ‘London Queen’ finds itself flittering between the music of synthpop and indie-rock.
Aaron Jolliff @AaronJoliff95
BadBadNotGood – Velvet
There has always been a fuzzy, inexplicable wall between jazz music and the contemporary music landscape. When we think of jazz, we immediately think of middle-aged bourgeoisies sipping on expensive wine in a fancy hotel lounge, so when three young college kids claiming to be a jazz band began covering hip-hop classics, the media pounced on this rare occurrence.
Three albums and many collaborations (Odd Future, Wu-tang, Danny Brown) later, Badbadnotgood has showcased a spectrum of innovative ideas fusing jazz, electronic and hip-hop sounds including their newest track “Velvet”.
“Velvet” is a surprisingly mellow track compared to their typically raucous drum spasms and borderline-lunatic piano riffs. This track has not only proven their growth but has refined their sound by having the ability to create a soothing, soft-jazz tune that still retains their thrilling nature with escalating drums, funky baselines and reserved yet irrepressible key runs.
Angels and Airwaves – Paralyzed
After Blink 182 going on an indefinite Hiatus in 2005, all the members eventually went on to from their own bands. Guitarist Tom DeLonge founded space obsessed Angels and Airwaves, who are now back with single ‘Paralyzed’ the bands first new, track since 2011. The single is transfixing from the start; it demands attention with a deep intro bringing bass to the forefront. There are hints of Blink 182 type guitar riffs that can be heard throughout, elements of ‘Ghosts on the Dance Floor’ being the most prominent. The combination of haunting synth with a galactic feel and intense lyrics creates a very a atmospheric listening experience.
Jessie Ware – Pieces
Jessie Ware has returned with her new album Tough Love which is out on the 13th October 2014, a follow up to 2012’s Devotion.
The newest release is entitled Pieces, which was co-written with Jimmy Napes and Tourist and produced by Emile Haynie.
Another powerful ballad, another heart-warming love song, we’ve heard it all before but you can feel the passion behind this one. The song features Jessie Ware’s enrapturing and soulful vocals accompanied by a delicate-stinging piano both suitable for what the song represents – A typical confusion of the heart ‘I was so sure this was real, but now I’m sure of nothing at all’.
Kenya Scarlett @KenyaScalett
Lower Than Atlantis – Live Slow, Die Old
Regardless of how you feel about Lower Than Atlantis‘ new album, love it because it’s a beautifully intelligent pop-rock album, hate it because it’s not Bretton, there’s no denying that Mike Duce’s song writing is still fantastically on point. ‘Live Slow, Die Old’ perfectly capture the reckless desperation of our generation. As well as being one of the most typically Lower Than Atlantis songs off the Hertfordshire four piece’s self titled album, it’s easily going to be on of the most relatable songs you’ll hear this year. If you’ve caught yourself in a rut of partying and eternal youth, this one’s for you.
Callum Cornwell @CallumJack93
James Bay – Hold Back The River
Hitchin musician James Bay’s ascent has been what fellow singer-songwriters dream of. From humble roots, he has grown a fanbase big enough to sell out London’s Scala and has caught the eye of the BBC and Complex magazine with his latest track ‘Hold Back The River’.
Opening with a soft, Matt Corby-style guitar melody, the track beautifully captures sadness and euphoria simultaneously. Building gradually as the song progresses, Bay is able to showcase the full range of his abilities; he starts with a hushed lullaby tone and ends with grit in his throat, proving he’s worthy of his position on the BBC Radio playlists.
Freya Cochrane @FreyaPhilippa
We Are The Ocean – ‘Ark’
Still going 6 years later and surviving the departure of Dan Brown in 2012, We Are The Ocean has returned with a new single ‘Ark’. A quick overview of this very overdramatic comeback sounds completely different to how they did in their prime in 2008. Sounding a little like the shit Enter Shikari released before they were good it is a captivating song, which you may or may like. Being a previous fan of WATO back in the day and after listening to ‘Ark’ they should remain back in 2008 doing what was good, although I suggest you give it a listen more than once.
Charlotte Croft @CroftCKS
Cold War Kids – Hot Coals
Cold War Kids have just released their newest single ‘Hot Coals.’ The song will be track number three on their newest album Hold My Home out October 21st.
The tune has an overall easy going vibe but with an upbeat tempo and catchy chorus. It’s safe to say the band have not strayed from their classic indie style. The lyrics are a bit hard to understand at times but the message comes across. Along with a simple guitar riff at the beginning and a steady beat, ‘Hot Coals’ wows in its simplicity.
Kaitlyn Ulrich @K_ulrich23
Oh Land – ‘Head Up High’
When listening to about Denmark’s Oh Land, the most noticeable feature of her songs is her colourful personality. This continues to be true with the infectious joyfulness of ‘Head Up High’.
Opening with oceanic synths and vivid chimes, the intro offers a brief serene moment before delivering hooks aplenty. Lyrical encouragement (“No heavy rain’s gonna hold me down anymore”) preludes the choruses excitable shouts, which creates the sound of a thousand Oh Land’s all intent on brightening your mood.
‘Head Up High’ may have originally been written with the intention to lift her friend’s spirits during a rough patch, yet a rush of optimism is likely to hit any person who hears the track.
Connor Cass @connorcass
Years and Years – Desire
London based trio, Years and Years are predicted to become one of the UK’s biggest new pop-dance fusions. The premier of their new single ‘Desire’ that is set to release November 23rd reveals exactly why; combining catchy dance beats with a very suiting pop-synth voice. The band are said to have taken inspiration for the album from 90’s house and rave music, concentrating on the importance of a songs energy. The singles chorus features similar themes to that of Clean Bandit and Gorgon City, reflecting similar vocals and infectious loops. In all ‘Desire’ proves to us the evidence as to why Years and Years are such a highly anticipated new band.
Lily Gartshore @Lilygartshore1
Jaden Smith ft. Willow Smith – Melancholy
This past week has been ‘International Recognise Jaden Smith Week’. After laying down two romantically centred monologues on Childish Gambino ‘s Kauai mixtape, the 16 year old wunderkind released a video for ‘Fast’, a wonderfully clunky and mechanical beat that Jaden smashed with his hardest bars yet.
Now he’s going over Pink Floyd’s ‘Breathe’ with some ethereal background vocalisations from sister Willow and it’s bound to stop the doubters mid ‘rich kid’ rant.
Jaden is surprisingly self-aware on this track, and bars like “Your father paid for all of this, if I was rapping like you I would help the world and call it quits” are a testament to that, but the most impressive thing to come from ‘International Recognise Jaden Smith Week’ is how everything has just clicked and fallen in the right place – this is the time to give Jaden the respect he deserves.
Nathan Butler @PeakFiDem