Five Things We Liked This Week – 31/05/2019

Further Listening:

5. What Is Phoebe Green Dreaming Of?

“You don’t get to choose what makes me blue”, so begins Dreaming Of, the new single from Manchester’s Phoebe Green, a lyric loaded with strength, hurt and just the right amount of anger. The track is Phoebe’s first for new label home, Chess Club Records, and arrives just in time for her upcoming library tour.

Musically, Dreaming Of, is a winning blend of lush production and indie-pop influences, as the shimmering production lends a sheen to Phoebe’s downbeat vocal and bright guitar lines. Lyrically, Phoebe suggests the track is about discovering who you really are, “I have felt the need to change the way I behave in order to appease others, to fit into a box and to be compliant. I no longer want to dumb myself down or be a lesser version of myself so that I’m easier to digest”. A hugely impressive debut single, already Phoebe Green sounds like a star in the making.

Dreaming Of is out now via Chess Club Records. Click HERE for more information on Phoebe Green.

4. Get Lost In The Foxwarren

Formed a decade ago, Foxwarren are almost a band in reverse of the norm. Having released nothing as a band, their front-man, Andy Shauff went off and became a solo superstar, before returning to his previous project. Consisting of Andy, alongside childhood friends who grew up, “in scattered small towns across the Canadian prairies”, Foxwarren bonded over a love of Pedro The Lion and The Band. Following Andy’s solo success they found themselves with a record detail at ANTI- and last year finally released the debut album that looked like it would never be.

With an intensive touring schedule booked for this summer, on both sides of the Atlantic, the band have this week shared a brand new video to one of the album’s most sedate and stand out moments, Lost On You. A woozy and slightly eerie number, Lost On You is accompanied by suitably dark and unusual video, as neon tubes light the desolate desert scenes. While the vocal is so clearly Andy Shauff, musically it’s quite different to his solo material; while his own music is dense and orchestral, Foxwarren seem to offer space to repeat passages and allow the song plenty of room to breathe. Here gentle electronics, and fluttering pianos accompany woozy guitars, before the whole thing breaks down to rich bassy-strings and latterly a serene minimalist outro. Foxwarren is the result of a decade well spent; a triumphant tribute to collaboration, friendship and taking your time.

Foxwarren is out now via ANTI-Records. Click HERE for more information on Foxwarren.

3. Pinky Bloody Pinky

Hailing from Los Angeles, Pinky Pinky are a trio of best-friends, who have not only had their own music, but the excellent Pinky And The Brain theme-tune stuck in our heads all week. Following hot on a pair of excellent EP’s the band are set to release their debut album, Turkey Dinner, in June, and have this week shared the latest single from it, Mr. Sunday.

Working on, “a modus operandi of not overthinking their decisions”, Pinky Pinky strive to avoid the noise of modern living, and concentrate on finding happiness in the every day. Described as, “a slow-building story of betrayal”, Mr. Sunday is one of those tracks that on first listen seems a lot less weird than you later realise it is. From a meandering intro of bass-lines and finger clicks that wouldn’t sound out of place on the Grease soundtrack, the track floats by as a blissful slice of indie-rock for two minutes, then suddenly becomes a strutting Doors-like rock song, before ending life as a horn-laden jazzy freak-out. Raw, unpretentious and most importantly of all an awful lot of fun, Pinky Pinky are very exciting indeed.

Turkey Dinner is out June 14th via Innovative Leisure. Click HERE for more information on Pinky Pinky.

2. Breakfast Means Peaness

Remember when we were apparently meant to leave the EU back on March 29th? No? Thankfully, the government didn’t seem to either. With that decision not only did the government upset an awful lot of Leave Voters, they also caused us to have to wait for a new single from Peaness. The Chester trio’s new single, Breakfast, was originally meant to come out to coincide with us waving goodbye to to our European pals, but presumably after consulting Donald Tusk they were granted an extension, and the track finally arrived this week, coinciding instead with the band’s 6Music session for Marc Riley.

Breakfast is, as you may have guessed, something of a Brexit diss-track, as the band explain, we called it Breakfast because the only funny thing about Brexit is that people kept saying Breakfast”. The track takes something of a dim view on our decision to isolate ourselves from our nearest neighbour as Peaness sing of pride and bluster and ask the question many of us have, “I’m not really sure exactly what they’re hoping for. I’m not really sure they knew what they were in for”. The doomsday-theme of the lyrics is perhaps matched in one of the band’s most downbeat musical tracks; a prominent thud of bass plays off against an almost reggae-influenced guitar line, as the delightful melancholy of the vocal harmonies cuts through. The Brexit negotiations might not quite be going to plan, if there ever was a plan, although at least they’ve given Peaness time to write the perfect soundtrack.

Breakfast is out now. Click HERE for more information on Peaness.

1. Cross Record Is The Queen Of The Castle

It’s been three years since the wonderful second Cross Record, Wabi Sabi, entered the world, although to be fair to Emily Cross she has been rather busy: got divorced, quit drinking, became a death doulah, started an observational podcast, formed the wonderful Loma, signed to Sub Pop, and co-wrote our favourite album of 2018, to name just a few things she has been up to. All of which made this week’s excellent news that there’s a self-titled Cross Record album on the way in August an even more pleasant surprise. Ahead of that release, Emily has shared the first track from it PYSOL My Castle.

For the third Cross Record album, Emily took an entirely different approach to her songwriting; while Wabi Sabi was created at home in short sessions between work and sleep, for this record Emily decamped to a secluded spot on the Mexican coast to write, before completing the record in LA. Listening to PYSOL My Castle, it feels like a record from a different headspace to Wabi Sabi, while that record had an anguished intensity, PYSOL My Castle feels a more introspective, almost claustrophobic feel. As always, Emily’s vocal is at the centre of everything, at time clear and focused, at others distorted, engulfed into a warm blanket of sound. Lyrically, the track was inspired by a trip from her coastal idyll to a bustling street market, as Emily sings, “you cannot break the bubble I’m living in”, you can almost feel her retreating from the world, the bubble becoming simultaneously a place of safety and a prison from the reality around her. It’s a frankly spectacular return, simultaneously eerie and comforting, a song to get lost in, just don’t be surprised if you never get back out.

Cross Record is out August 2nd via Ba Da Bing! Click HERE for more information on Cross Record.

Header photo is Cross Record by Jinni J. – https://www.instagram.com/heyjinnij

 

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