New Music Weekly #15 | St. Vincent, The National & Kesha

New Music Weekly is back! Welcome to 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; St. Vincent, The National, Kesha and more…

The National – ‘Guilty Party’

The National have loosened up. Well, about as much as the National can loosen up. Their latest, quite superb singles have sound like much needed deep breaths, a collective gathering of thoughts without the pretension of rigid structuring. Sure, the latest track, ‘Guilty Party’ is still a languid piece of lugubrious song writing but the instrumentation opens up as things progress. It’s a jam session, The National style. The track is like a cruel subversion of the band’s last big hit ‘I Need my Girl’, with Berninger still dependent on his significant other, but this time he finds himself in a toxic situation with ‘no way out’.

St. Vincent – ‘New York’  

St.Vincent hasn’t yet confirmed that she is releasing a new album, but after announcing a new tour and a couple dates in Dublin, it’s probably safe to assume that ‘New York’ will be a lead single for a forthcoming LP. Still, throwaway release or serious endeavor, the track is a welcome return, a surprisingly subdued piano ballad that’s also quietly eruptive.

Twin Peaks – ‘Under the Pines’

The scraggily polished rock of Twin Peaks has the kind of freewheeling charm that’s hard not to get swept up in. ‘Under the Pines’ is a victorious piece of throwback garage, ultra sincere in its attempt to induce cheesy grins. They’re having fun, and it sounds like it.

Japanese Breakfast – ‘Road Head’  

Japanese Breakfast’s sophomore album Soft Sounds From Another Planet is July 15 and its definitely worth checking out. This week she released a single and video for “Road head”. It’s apparent already the JB is moving away from the more straight forward dream-pop of her first record only released a year ago. While this is still ornately pretty, the disquieting, melancholic quality of her music is more upfront this time round.

DAWN – ‘Gravity’

While many may be aware of DAWN after she recently featured on the Dirty Projectors’ excellent ‘Cool your heart’, she has also been releasing plenty of high quality singles of her own in the past year and a bit. ‘Gravity’ is a brutal piece of post-break up introspection. The seemingly upbeat percussion and chiming house touches can’t mask the resentment the singer feels for period of life misspent on another. “5 years in and found out bout him man him times three/ Thought about murder that’s the Ninth Ward in me” she scalds.

Kesha – ‘Praying’

For them just to be written, mixed and released, Songs are little miracles. If it’s good, then we must truly treasure it. For a song like Kesha’s ‘Praying’ to exist, its something else entirely. It’s almost impossible not separate this euphoric, nakedly powerful piano ballad from it sombre context. The now 30 year old popstar has been through hell and back since her last record in 2012 – depression, eating disorder, those Dr Luke allegations – but as comebacks go, it doesn’t get much more aptly fist pumping than this. Even if, you can take it away from the context, this is still a vocal powerhouse from an artist who doesn’t get the recognition she deserves in that field.

Lost Horizons – ‘The  Places We’ve Been’

Simon Raymonde, formally of Cocteau Twins, has been producing for plenty of other artsits in last couple decade but  hasn’t really made much of his own  music since the dream pop group split up. Now his formed a new group with Dif Juz drummer Richie Thomas. Their first single ‘The Places We’ve Been’ is  a slow-burning grower which  features haunting vocal work from  Karen Peris.

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