Words by Ben Bowman
What’s on my playlist?
Amid new releases from bands across the alternative spectrum, there are some old and new favourites on my current playlist. Songs perfect for sunday afternoons, songs perfect for long drives and some songs that make you feel as if you are clinging on to those last few ounces of summer. I pick six of my current favourite songs I am currently listening to and hopefully convince you to wrap your ears around them.
Black Honey – Hello Today
Brighton indie-rockers Black Honey are back with another new single released on the 23rd of September entitled ‘Hello Today’. The band stick true to the sound they seemed to encapsulate in their previous releases such as ‘Corrine’ and ‘Spinning Wheel’. Although the sound that the band have created seems to be recurring throughout their EP’s and singles, the lyrics on this latest release from band centrepiece and frontwoman Izzy Bee appear to be more focused on walking away from something rather than longing for it. In ‘Corrine’, the line that always sticks out to me is ‘Corrine, come back to me cause it’s six in the morning and we’re only playing make believe’, a heartfelt, desperate cry for a reconciling. Vocalist Izzy has confidence and attitude flowing from her while executing formulated, flowing french phrases and slamming down the words “these boots, it’s true, only walk away from you.” Quite a change from the pining and yearning felt in ‘Corrine’. A band I saw while supporting Catfish & The Bottlemen in April, the Brighton four-piece have released another solid single and could be destined for bigger things in 2017.
Spring King – Detroit
Spring King are a band formed in Manchester in 2012, and 2016 is starting to become their breakthrough year. They played the South by Southwest festival in 2015, and their May release ‘Detroit’ is beginning to turn a lot of heads. Getting frequent Radio coverage they were the first ever band to be played on Zane Lowe’s Beats 1 Radio and most notably ‘Detroit’ has been added to the Radio 1 playlist, which is how I ended up hearing the track. The song holds a strong summer feel to it and makes easy listening. The chorus, rather anthemic as Tarek Musa belts out ‘I don’t wanna be nowhere else except for Detroit city’ and the fast paced guitar makes it easy to see why Spring King are noticeably receiving more attention.
Alexandra Savior – M.T.M.E
Alex Turner’s most recent song writing partner is arguably most well known for her part she played in the writing of The Last Shadow Puppets’ ‘Miracle Aligner’, a song originally intended for her use but ended on Turner and Kane’s ‘Everything You’ve Come to Expect’. A few months on from the Shadow Puppets’ release, Savior herself is on a mission and is on somewhat of a meteoric rise. Her latest release ‘M.T.M.E’, standing for ‘music to my ears’ has quite the eerie vibe to it, but still retains the same sleek style as her previous track ‘Shades’ and the 21 year olds’ melancholy vocals make for really interesting listening. The NME, quite aptly described it as seductive, but they’ll find anyway to make Alex Turner look good, eh?
Carole King – It’s too Late
It seems as if by magic that the Barclaycard British Summer Time pulls of an incredible line-up every year, and this year was no exception. My girlfriend was bought tickets to see Carole King perform ‘Tapestry’ in full at Hyde Park and I was lucky enough to go with her. Admittedly, I had never really got round to listening to this album but now it has become one of my all-time favourites. It holds such beautiful memories and I will never treasure anything as much as the LP of the album she has gifted me. A real Sunday afternoon favourite, Carole King’s incredible song writing career has opened really opened my eyes and the melody on this track in particular is something that sticks with me. That gig was a real, ‘I was there’ moment.
Blossoms – Charlemagne
Blossoms are an Indie-Pop fusion that are on top of the world at the moment. They have just started their Chart Topping album tour, in which I get to see them in action on Thursday in London. Life could not be better from the 5 piece from Stockport and the song ‘Charlemagne’ really defines the essence of the band. Not afraid to delve into the world of pop and frontman and songwriter Tom Ogden has become somewhat of a master of the catchy pop song. ‘Charlemagne’ has recently been re-released by the band in the build up to their new album and the catchy synth based riff that flows throughout the song is impossible to shake from your head. On the back of this album it will be interesting to see where Blossoms go next with their sound, but one thing is for sure, they now have an extremely big fan base to showcase it to.
Jamie T – Power Over Men
I was never sure what to feel about Jamie T. I felt as if it was quite an unpopular opinion to dislike him, there would always be someone to jump on your back, but his new album has completely won me over. ‘Trick’ is a brilliantly put together record and it’s quite a change from his ‘Sticks ‘n’ Stones’ roots, but does blend together work from all of his releases to date. The standout track for me is ‘Power Over Men’. The Wimbledon born artist demonstrates soft but crooning vocals on top of a backdrop of a fairly calm drumbeat. The lyric “she can never really kiss/ ’cause there’s never a risk” highlights the nature in which he ties in the concept of the sexual allure into this piece, further seen through the video for this track. The track centres on a temptress leading men into dangerous situations through her seductive nature. Jamie T has always been one to focus on social issues in his song writing and his new album seems to be no different.
This article was written by Ben Bowman, follow him on twitter here