New Music Weekly #4 | The Shins, Ed Sheeran and Todd Terje

New Music Weekly is your one stop shop for new releases in the world of music each and every week. From the best of the best, to some of the rest, Mark Conroy is here to give you the low down on what you might have missed. This week; The Shins, Ed Sheeran, Todd Terje and more…

Todd Terje – ‘Jungelknugen’ (Four Tet Remix)

What can be said about a track that has its remixes released before the source material? Scandinavian beatmaker Todd Terje is either supremely confident in his forthcoming ‘Jungelknugen’, or given in the fact that another artist has outdone him. Either way Four Tet’s remix is a scintillating, dance floor filler full of rave bombast and a minimalist repetition evocative of Philip Glass.  

Jay Som  ‘Baybee’

One of my artists to watch for 2017, Melina Duterte of Jay Som has been something of a cult artist in her native San Francisco for a couple of  years now. Being billed as her full-length debut , Everybody Works is set for release on March 10th. Jay Som makes lush, dream pop filled with infectious guitar lines and wry, observational lyricism. ‘Baybee’  differentiates itself from her past efforts with a hint of synth sweetness but is yet another happily hazy track.    

Sylvan Esso  ‘Die Young’

After giving us one the best tracks of 2016 with ‘Radio’, synth-pop duo Sylvan Esso release their 3rd single from their upcoming sophomore album. While ‘Radio’ was a blistering, astutely packaged piece of pop, ‘Die Young’ is a more measuredly paced track with  Amelia Meath adorning the song’s already moody electro-syncopation with her charismatic croon.  

Alex G – ‘Bobby’

Fresh off collaborating with Frank Ocean on the soulful masterpiece Blonde, Alex G has gone a little bit country. This week, the 24-year-old released two songs off his upcoming album Rocket.  Both mark a slight sonic departure from his previous work. ‘Witch’ is a somewhat esoteric, Big Star channelling effort but ‘Bobby’ is the more conventional and stronger track.  It’s a sweet, endearing mix of deep south balladry and the lo-fi duet work of a band like The Moldy Peaches.

Vagabon ‘Cold Apartment’

Vagabon is Cameroonian based in the US who makes lo-fi sound high-end. She released the small scale but deceptively empowering Infinite Worlds this week, which is certainly set to be one of the best DIY releases of 2017. ‘Cold Apartment’ is the standout track, starting out as conspicuously hushed and meditative then erupts into raucous, driving anthem as our singer documents the pain of moving on, both literally and figuratively.  

Beach Fossils ‘This Year’

Beach Fossils have always been a band that managed to make air itself sound too heavy by comparison, and ‘This Year’ is no exception. The track is the lead single for their upcoming album Summersault and it floats in from the off with the gentle twang of the congruous chiming guitars. It’s not all dreamy business as usual, as the cinematic string work has Beach Fossils sounding a little bit less feathery, but they’re still amongst the clouds.

Miami Horror – ‘Leila’

This week, the indie force of Australia’s Miami Horror dropped an infectious flashback to the 1980’s dance floor. ‘Leila’ is deliciously catchy piece of nostalgic synthwave that has the vocal charisma of Talking Heads as well as the sultry throwback sax work of a Lethal Weapon film. The band will be releasing what they are calling 5-song “conceptual record” called The Shapes in a couple weeks, and based on this track, its sure to be a toe-tapper.

The Shins – ‘Painting a Hole’

Following up on the numerous singles they have already released for their upcoming album Heartworms, The Shins drop what must be the last track to appear before the LP drops.  ‘Painting a Hole’ is another up-tempo, lively stomp akin to already released ‘Name For You’. 

Ed Sheeran –  ‘Galway Girl’

For the most part, spaces on this list are saved for the very best the week had to offer, but sometimes a song comes along so confoundingly awful and shamelessly profit-driven that it must be talked about. ‘Galway Girl’ is our very own (but not really) Ed Sheeran’s attempt at trad rap pop-rock (aren’t you glad that’s now a thing), in honour of the country that never really asked for it in the first place. The cynic in me says this is just shallow bid at a guaranteed regional hit while the optimist in me believes there’s a corner of the world where the reach of its ‘Oirish’ tentacles won’t get to. It’s the most pandering, lucky charms piece of heritage exploitation bullshit I have ever heard. The worst part is, just like that toxically saccharine cereal, we are going to eat it up.  

Charly Bliss – ‘Percolator’

The bubbly grunge sensibilities of Charly Bliss made the list a couple weeks ago with ‘Glitter’, but are once again featured with the fiery ‘Percolator’. Eva Hedrick’s act as vocal instigator with her simmering rage accentuating the sense of reckless abandon. The guitars thunder, the hooks stick, and the gloves are off.  A fun scuzzy, sub 3 minute bite of 90s rock.  

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