We haven’t heard from Holiday Crowd in quite some time, but boy is this new single a welcome return. The group just dropped new of a new 7″ for Shelflife Records, and the A-side is the sort of slinky-jangle pop nod, toying with a hint of croon to the vocals. In a way, it’s kind of a Sarah Records influenced take on Two Wheels Good-era Prefab Sprout, which should hopefully catch your ears. The jangles aren’t over the top, but the melodic charm of the chorus really helps sell the sound here, particularly when pace is added to the vocals giving the song that sort of swirling allure. Party Favours 7″ is out on April 15th.
We’ve been covering New York’s Phantom Handshakes for quite some time over here, but now they’ve turned us onto another artists, as they just dropped this catchy pop ditty with Edinburgh’s Swiss Portrait. This song works steadily on a solid beat, working that snare to its catchy best; the guitars swirl and jangle behind that, wrapping the track in this emphatic bit of jangling pop music. Federica’s vocals add the dreaminess you’re seeking, playing from the distance like some angelic whisper weaving in and out of the core of this track. Not sure if this is a one-off tune, or something larger at play, but we’ll keep you posted…for now just enjoy this hit.
I’ve been a fan of James Hindle and Calvin Halliday since their Pooches days, and their latest US Highball single takes their jangling joyousness and spins it in a little bit more sedate tone. It’s not that the duo lose any of their melodic hooks, rather they just soften the edges, putting them more in line with the likes of Lucksmiths or Boys with the Perpetual Nervousness; I don’t mind that one bit. It’s a classic pop sound, soaked in harmony and sampled beats, whetting the appetite for the release of their forthcoming A Parkhead Cross of the Mind, dropping on March 25th via Lame-O Records.
The Baello brothers, Louie and Christian, just sprung up recently on my radar with their Dream, Ivory work, and I’m absolutely salivating as the band continue to sprinkle tunes into the world. This latest single has this beautiful patience to it, using the crystalline guitar lines to create this ethereal atmosphere that feels cinematic in nature. As the tune progresses, the jangling notes absorb more textures, giving the track the slightest buoyancy and bop, though never overdone, bringing in the perfect balance between dreaming and play. The brothers will embark on a tour in June through the US, so keep your eyes peeled for dates!
What better way to announce your new LP than to scream at the rafters and just say It’s Mick Trouble’s Second LP, which is exactly what Mick Trouble has done to announce his new record for Emotional Response. Jumping right in here, it’s nearly impossible to not fall in love with this new single; it can be filed in the bin with acts like the Jam or Nick Lowe, though I still always think the project borders on the fun side of TV Personalities too. It’s all about angular riffs, toying with melody and structure, and ultimately hooks galore with a DIY ethos. If the world had better tastes, this track (and album) would zoom straight to number one! I can’t even begin to explain to you how infectious and cool it all sounds! It’s Mick Trouble’s Second LP is out on April 5th via Emotional Response; it’s a must pick up immediately!
Man, there’s a seemingly infinite amount of great tunes coming out this week, and while I know a lot of this has bounced around, one of the charmers I hit upon is the latest from US Highball, the Glaswegian pop outfit readying their new LP for Lame-O Records. “Double Dare” is the perfect way to jump into the new album, toying with the jangling riff work, though still hyper-reliant upon the combined melodic focus of Calvin and James. Tossing in a synth solo mid track just illustrates the band’s willingness to really take a spin and have some fun with their craft. I’m a sucker for this chorus too, particularly when that drum rolls across the background. A Parkhead Cross of the Mind is slated for release on March 25th.
I’ve long enjoyed the bouncing pop bravado from Estalla Rosa and Sebastian Voss, aka Nah, so we wanted to be sure we gave their newest single a shout out as we got our feet back under us. Jangling from the get-go, it’s hard not to fall for the stuttering pop, particularly when Rosa’s vocals come in with this feeling like collapsing into a bed of down feathers; it’s the perfect foil for Voss, who has a hint of David Gedge going on in this rendition, particularly when he takes the lead. I love how all the vocals seem to work against the rushed jangles, creating this drastic spin for the listener that certainly will have you reaching to press play one more time!
We’ve covered German outfit Crabber since their first LP a few years back, and, well, I feel like I’d be remiss if I didn’t encourage you to take a peak at Who Let the Ducks Out, the band’s latest LP. This go round, you can start with a little nod towards the crisp jangling pop of the Lucksmiths on opener “Climb Into My Mind,” and its a sound that pops up throughout the whole of the LP. But, you also get a bit of a heavier edge, a la early Boyracer, albeit with a push towards the more melodic; you can just listen to “A Kind of Tragic,” to get where I’m coming from here. Each time I listen, a new reminder pops up, so let me sum it all up for you. This new record is specifically for those who love Field Mice, Lucksmiths, Buzzcocks and Boyracer…then all the various bus stops in between. Seriously, just stream this album; its available via Jigsaw Records!
We’ve been pretty supportive of Rural France in regards to their forthcoming RF LP, and today they’re sharing another single to tease us along before next week’s official release. According to the band’s Tom Brown, the riff had been bouncing around in his head for years, until one day he hit upon just the right line to tie it all together, leaving us with ‘one of those nostalgic, sad summer songs.’ Brown alludes to the Beach Boys, but in looking at more modern iterations, you can faintly hear the Wrens in this; things sound like they’re jumbled, stacking layer and layer, then all of a sudden your ear locks into the melody and you’re swept away. If ever a song encapsulated the dictionary definition of sunny wistfulness, this has to be the one! Look for RF next Friday via Meritorio Records.
Another day and another great pop tune from the current pop epicenter of San Francisco; today’s new track is the latest single from the Umbrellas. They waste no time jumping right into the twisting turn of jangling guitar sounds, steeped in the rich history of California. That would normally be more than enough to whether this critics meaningless opinions, but the dueling vocals craft this blossoming melody that I can’t get out of my head. It begins with Matt offering up some heavier tones, akin to Calvin Johnson, but as the track moves forward, Morgan jumps in; I love it because these aren’t mere backing vocals; they’re dueling lyrics, meeting in the end to unite for effect. Fine, okay, this band rules. They’re debut self-titled LP is out on August 6th via Slumberland Records.