5. Dispose Of Torres As Special Waste
Torres has already released one of the finest albums of the year, Sprinter, but not happy with that she’s now making a sprint for the best cover version of the year too. Whilst playing dates in the US supporting Garbage on their 20th anniversary tour, Torres has shared a magical version of the 90’s-rock legends classic single, Special.
Torres has produced an entirely different version of the track, barely recognisable as the original song. Rapid fire, whirring drums, and a distant haunting vocal, lend the track a hypnotic feeling of longing, so removed from the original is this version that it’s double the length of the Garbage version. Even as she sings the famous line “I thought you were special, but I’ve run out of patience” this version feels entirely Torres’ own. Very Special indeed!
4. Breaking Waves
London via-Sweden quartet Kid Wave, recorded their debut album, Wonderlust, in Stockport. Which makes their brand of fuzzy, West-Coast-sounding, slacker rock all the more unlikely. That album was equal parts Lanterns On The Lake and The Lemonheads, and every bit as exciting as that sounds.
This week they shared the video for their new single, I’m Trying To Break Your Heart, sadly not a Wilco cover, but excellent in its own right. It’s a blur of metronomic drums, reverberating guitar lines and the dead-pan vocals of singer Lea Emmery, as she shares her musings on young love gone awry. Currently on tour in Europe with The Vaccines and with a high-profile slot with The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart waiting for them on their return, Kid Wave are currently on the crest of something very special.
Wonderlust is out now on Heavenly Recordings. Kid Wave play at Oval Space in London on November 6th.
3. Really Brooks?
Iowa’s Brooks Strause started playing music at the age of just 13, but it’s only in recent years, having found his regular backing band The Gory Details, that’s he has started to channel that into something productive. Today he releases his seventh long-player, The Chymical Wedding Of Brooks Strause. The album was written back in 2012, and is a potent combination of heartbreak and a newly discovered interest in mysticism.
Whilst Brook initially set out to write an album influenced by 1950’s-era rhythm & blues, based on the single Really he’s ended up with something far more interesting. Really is an exploration of the difference between infatuation and love, all set to a musical backdrop that’s equal parts glam-rock David Bowie and The Bees at their poppiest, only with more doo-wop backing vocals. Based on this track it looks like this album might just be lucky number seven.
The Chymical Wedding Of Brooks Strause is out now on Cartouche Records.
2. Tina Doesn’t Know That You’re Lost
Oslo native Tina Refsnes is something of a rising star in the alt-folk world, influenced by the likes of Neil Young and Laura Marling, she falls neatly into the gap between English New-Folk and Americana.
This week Tina shared her new single, I Don’t Know. The track, which is lifted from her upcoming debut album No One Knows That You’re Lost, is a masterclass in unhurried songwriting, acoustic guitars gently unwind as drums play a steady unobtrusive beat, and her voice swoops in with a gentle, hushed beauty, and more than a touch of Joni Mitchell. I Don’t Know is a beautiful hint at what’s to come when her full length recording arrives early next month.
No One Knows That You’re Lost is out November 6th.
1. Use Your Vote – Electa The Wharves
Psych-folk three piece The Wharves released one of 2014’s best albums in the shape of At Bay, and this week they revealed the details of its follow up. Funded by PRS’ Women Make Music grant and being released via Upset The Rhythm, their next album will be entitled Electa. Whilst the album wont arrive until 2016, for now they’ve shared the first taster, in the form of a new single NAZ, which is set to be released as part of double A-side single, next month.
NAZ is a powerful blend of tight, soaring vocal harmonies, pounding, primal drums and intricate, entwined guitar lines and bass runs. As perfectly formed as anything on At Bay, it’s also arguably their most accessible moment to date, all boding very well for Electra’s release next year. On top of the excellent song there’s also a cat in the video, which the Internet agrees is always a good thing.