AS another week comes to an end, it’s time to reflect on the latest gems of new music that have seized our hearts and minds. In the sixtieth edition of New Music Radar, we have a comeback single from Scotland’s very own Honeyblood, a massive statement of intent from Dublin frontrunners FONTAINES D.C. and a new excerpt from Matt Helders’ latest project. Check it out below.
Honeyblood ‘The Third Degree’
With a third album on the way, Honeyblood have re-emerged as the solo project of chief songwriter and lead vocalist Stina Tweeddale. Stepping forward to claim the mantle of the project that she brought to life seven years ago, it is said to have resulted in some of her most ambitious and focused songwriting to date. Along with the announcement of the new album which has been produced by John Congleton (Angel Olsen, St Vincent), Tweeddale has heralded the beginning of this exciting new era with the release of preview track ‘The Third Degree’.
Revisiting her penchant for infectious hooks with a gritty, punk-rock edge, ‘The Third Degree’ recalls The Ronettes in its booming drums as well as the captivating intrigue of St Vincent. Slicker than previous outings, it’s still Honeyblood through and through though; Tweeddale’s delivery is every bit as sharp as we remember, her lyrics are brilliantly direct and the guitars are loud and electrifying. We get the impression though that this time around, she won’t necessarily be tied down to the scuzzy days of yesteryear.
FONTAINES D.C. Big’
Along with the announcement of a headline show at Glasgow’s SWG3 in November as part of a wider UK tour, Fontaines DC shared details of their eagerly anticipated debut album ‘Dogrel’ this week. Set to be unveiled on 12th April, the Dublin outfit have preceded it with the appropriately named ‘Big’. Short, snappy and brilliantly anthemic, it doesn’t take long for frontman Grian Chatten to seize your attention – “Dublin in the rain is mine” he bellows over a thrash of guitars; a fervent opening salvo if ever there was one. Once again, it’s their viscerally important lyrics that stand out – “My childhood was small/ But I’m gonna be big!” he shouts over the frenzied choruses. Behind the swaggering bluster though there lies a deep-seated awareness as they explain “We felt that great ambition was a sickness”. If this is the curtain just opening on their debut album, then we can’t wait to see what comes next from one of the most exciting guitar bands to arrive in the past year.
Good Cop Bad Cop ‘Silk and Leather’
News of an unexpected collaboration arrived this week in the shape of Arctic Monkeys’ drummer Matt Helders and Joe Carnall of Milburn who unveiled their new project Good Cop Bad Cop. And although both are known for their guitar-driven bands, their debut track ‘Silk and Leather’ sees them experiment with spacey vintage synths and 80s-inspired sounds.
A band who have seemingly defied expectation with every release and packed live show, Gallus launched their debut EP ‘Don’t Be Shy’ last week with a riotous sold-out gig at Glasgow’s Stereo. An important milestone that has almost become like a rite of passage for any rising punk band in the city, the show provided all the proof required to see that this is an EP that has already resonated and captured the hearts and minds of the band’s growing fanbase as they bellowed the words back to the young outfit. Alongside the ska-aping ‘Looking Like a Mess’ and the electrifying ‘Split’, ‘Talk’ is another standout; driven by the familiar barrage of guitar and rhythm, it displays a more reflective and thoughtful side to the band in its lyrical matter and melodic chorus.
Cara Rose ‘In My Head’
A hugely talented singer-songwriter who has been known to gig in and around Glasgow for the last couple of years, Cara Rose has seized the hearts and minds of many with her soulful vocals and deeply moving creations. With a voice that has the ability to stop you in your tracks, the singer unveiled a new video this week of her original track ‘In My Head’. Sitting behind the piano in Glasgow’s Mitchell Library, ‘In My Head’ transports you to a smoky jazzy bar, evoking the spirit of Amy Winehouse and Lianne La Havas with each stirring affectation. Deeply nuanced and effortlessly intimate, you feel every word as she addresses the object of her affections over a minimalist yet hugely emotive arrangement.
The Roly Mo ‘Fooled By You’
Spawned from the same scene that has brought us the likes of Rascalton, The Dunts, Gallus and Heavy Rapids, The Roly Mo are among the new generation of Glasgow guitar bands that are waiting to make their mark. Set to be launched next week at the Priory’s infamous Club Sabbath, the young quartet have dropped their debut ‘Fooled By You’; a track that does more than enough to suggest they could follow in the footsteps of their fast-rising peers. Evoking the spirit of noughties-indie bands such as The Vines and The Hives, the track is driven by strident guitars and an infectious earworm of a chorus.