St Vincent abandons the guitar but recaptures our heart on new single
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St. Vincent – ‘New York’
We have been waiting for new music from St Vincent for slightly longer than we wanted to (we really, really, really, really liked her last record). But now we have 155 seconds of new Annie Clark genius and that’s getting us by for now.
We had no expectations about what new St Vincent music might sound like – we’re not stupid – so the fact that it’s a gentle piano ballad with a subtle electro undercurrent isn’t a shock. That it’s packed full of swear words, yearning for a lost love and cinematic strings doesn’t surprise us one bit. And the lack of her dextrous guitar would be disappointing if the song wasn’t so damn fascinating.
Since her last album, Clark has pretty much become tabloid fodder thanks to a growing profile as an artist and private life associations that those vultures can’t resist exploiting. This song is so good that it ought to overshadow any speculation about its muse and propel St Vincent to an even higher standing it the world of indie rock. That new album can’t come soon enough.
Bedouine – ‘Solitary Daughter’
Bedouine has quite a fascinating backstory. Born in Syria, she grew up in Saudi Arabia, with Armenian parents and moved to the US thanks to the Green Card lottery. But just a few seconds into ‘Solitary Daughter’, you’ll probably have forgotten all about it. Her voice is immensely beautiful and here it is perfectly supported by hushed, unobtrusive, regal production. Fans of pastoral 60s folk will adopt her immediately and so they should.
Alex Cameron – ‘Candy May’
He’s the artist’s artist. The guy whose music every band loves. And it’s only a matter of time before you fall under Alex Cameron’s spell too. ‘Candy May’ is a moody, uncomfortably slinky jam that sounds a bit like Springsteen would if he had to keep a day job, drive to every show and work to attract a mate. In some ways, it feels like an act. But in more ways, it feels completely real.
Cut Copy – ‘Airborne’
Australia’s kings of indie-electro Cut Copy finally return and they do so in fine style. ‘Airborne’ is the kind of slick, weird, psychedelic dance-pop gem that the band do best. One that will light up dancefloors and brighten your day. Reach for the sky during that piano breakdown.
Julia Jacklin – ‘Eastwick’
It wasn’t that long since Julia Jackin’s brilliant debut album, but she’s already got more new music for us with a new 7” single coming out in September. ‘Eastwick’ is the more of the same kind of evocative storytelling that blew our minds with her earliest work, delivered with as much beguiling beauty as ever. It culminates in a vicious-sounding crescendo, full of fuzz and distortion, and it’s all Incredibly pleasing.
Lonely Boys – ‘Lonely Boys Anthem’
These fellas went viral after Queens Of The Stone Age tapped them to play support at their upcoming Darwin show. But Double J listeners have been all over Lonely Boys for ages thanks to earlier singles ‘The Hunter’ and ‘Murray Island’.
‘Lonely Boys Anthem’ is every bit as electric as those tracks, as soon as it kicks in you’ll struggle to keep from dancing. We can only imagine how much this would destroy when they play it live. Here’s hoping lots of Australians get the chance to witness it soon.
Mr Jukes – ‘Leap Of Faith’ (ft. De La Soul & Horace Andy)
You might wonder how some dude you’ve never heard of called Mr Jukes can get artists like De La Soul and Horace Andy on a song for his debut album. But Mr Jukes is the nom de plume of Bombay Bicycle Club’s Jack Steadman, and the club-friendly jam he’s concocted here is sublime. The album is out on Friday and we get the feeling it’s gonna go down very nicely.
Mew – ‘Candy Pieces All Smeared Out’
If you know Mew, then you’re probably fully prepared for how wonderfully warped this song is. If you don’t know them, you’ll either love or hate it. They make a kind of prog-rock-meets-synth-pop style of music that is nothing if not unique and always completely epic. The band will be in Australia later this year and their live show is quite a spectacle too.
Kane Strang – ‘My Smile Is Extinct’
Dunedin’s Kane Strang has been making beautiful, personable bedroom pop for the best part of half a decade now, but he may well have peaked on ‘My Smile Is Extinct’. It’s got that lovelorn, heart on sleeve, confessional kind of mood to the lyrics, but the music has a far brighter feel to it. His realisation that life goes on in spite of heartbreak might seem unsophisticated, but that’s part of its charm. Besides, it’s true. And we all learn some time.
Teischa – ‘Midnight Hour’
Perth singer Teischa delivers a stunner of a trip hop-leaning modern pop song with ‘Midnight Hour’. Her voice is flawless, possessing strength without sacrificing beauty, and the production is simple but enviably engaging, taking a little from electronic music of the past and a little from the present too. It’s a really special song that signifies this woman is someone to keep your eye on.