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: Tinashe, Erica Cody, Beach House & more…
Tinashe ‘Faded Love (Feat.Future)’
2018 will be the year that Tinashe makes the transition from beloved but underappreciated R’n’B featured artist to a fully-realised pop star in her own right. After a lengthy, 4 year gestation period, it looks like her sophomore release Joyride will finally see the light of day. ‘Faded Love’ is the second single and it’s a sumptuous, subdued grower. The mellow melodic turns and choppy vocal hooks, afforded here via producer Stargate, create a twilight atmosphere and a nuzzling, nocturnal mood. It’s like walking alongside Tinashe on an empty, lightly rained on, city street at night as she introspects about a relationship that still going but she knows is already dead. Even Future’s featured verse and backing vocals are suitably restrained here, breathing just the right amount of life to track that could have somnambulated otherwise.
Soccer Mommy ‘Still Clean’
All of the singles Soccer Mommy has released so far for her upcoming Clean have been worth your time, and the third taster for that record is no different. On the more stripped back ‘Still Clean’ Sophie Allison has laid herself bare as she recalls the narrative-driven songwriting of Big Thief’s Adrienne Lenker. The track opens with Allison using carnal imagery twice to describe a brief passionate affair she had with a fuckboy, first he “loved [her] like an animal” and then she uses clever wordplay to get across the beastly disposing of her: “Then you took me down to the water, got your mouth all clean / Left me drowning once you picked me out your bloody teeth”.
The band formally known as Viet Cong released their second single for their upcoming third album entitled New Material. Like so much of their past work, ‘Antidote’ is certainly brimming with broody atmospherics and industrious guitar lines but it’s also marks something of a departure for the group. This is essentially the band’s take on a new wave track. It’s blistering, reverberated drums, oddly upbeat, echoed vocals coupled with a sense of doom make it sound like a photo negative version of a hit song from Erasure or Soft Cell.
Erica Cody ‘Good Intentions’
21-year old Dubliner Erica Cody is responsible for this Irish track of the week. ‘Good Intentions’ is bone-rattlingly good R’n’B. Cody’s soulful, self-assured vocals sound mature, as if her delivery here is as natural to her as her regular speech. The production is alive, energised by the electric hooks and old-school dynamism. Recalling the fun loving sound of Nao, the free-spirited, the juvenile bravado present injects that certain something that separates Cody from her peers.
Beach House ‘Lemon Glow’
The two records that Beach House released in 2015 felt like the band had become so boxed in by their own style that they had little left to show us. It’s refreshing then, to hear ‘Lemon Glow’ and realise that their output can still surprise and impress. Don’t get me wrong, with its droning ambience and glacially paced gorgeousness, this is still a Beach House song through and through. The minor subversion that regents interest if heard from the off, with the synths sounding warped and wayward. Something’s off, the melody sounds like it’s playing off a scratched vinyl, but Victoria Legrand’s trademark effortless croon grounds the track to give us a spellbinding piece of surreal dream pop.
Car Seat Headrest ‘My Boy(Twin Fantasy)’
Car Seat Headrest re-recorded Twin Fantasy, one of their old DIY albums that first appeared in Bandcamp, and the new polished, cleverly tweaked version is light years ahead of the original. Right from the opening track ‘My Boy (Twin Fantasy)’ it’s apparent that the much-needed oomph is present to give this song what they needed to finally be heard by a wider audience.
YG ‘Sun Whoop’
YG is probably the best rapper working today that still resolutely sticks to the classic Compton sound (he also gave us one of the few genuinely good anti-trump songs). The new hard hitter and bass heavy ‘Sun Whoop’ doesn’t yet appear to be a part of bigger release but it’s still satisfying enough on its own terms. This is a quintessential west coast banger, from the obligatory local representation—the title/chorus is a gang call known to Blood members—to the booming production that bounces along with ferocious zeal.