The continuing deluge of new rock greatness shows no signs of turning into a trickle, and this week is no different, with new releases from the likes of Ghost, Whiskey Myers, Ginger Wildheart and Orianthi delighting our eager ears.
But before we carry on with this week's carry-on, it's the results of last week's tournament. Alter Bridge emerged victorious after defeating Halestorm and The Virginmarys to top the podium, and in the week that football finally did come home, we offer our congratulations to both Myles Kennedy and Co. and to the brave Lionesses.
And now? Onwards! We do battle once more!
Orianthi - Light It Up
We all know Orianthi’s got chops to burn – that she could lap most rock guitar heroes with her eyes shut, as evidenced through work with Alice Cooper, Richie Sambora, Santana and plenty more. But can she write earworms of her own? With the sort of instantly winning riffology that characterises her A-list collaborators? Erm… yes, as beefy, groove-tastic new single Light It Up shows. Taken from new album, Rock Candy, which comes out in October.
The Hunna - Trash
It’s been said before, it’ll be said again, we’re saying it now: sometimes keeping it simple really pays off. Built on a no-frills, all-beef hook, the British trio’s new single is all unfettered, ahh-fuck-it punk oomph with Beastie Boys lip, as they chorus ‘all they want is fucking money, money!’ like a bunch of kids diving into the biscuit tin, opening all the presents, turning up the stereo and going straight for gold. “We had so much fun writing the lyrics,” says vocalist/guitarist Ryan Potter. “Even though it has got an angst to it, we don’t take life too seriously, we’re just having fun. We’re not calling anyone specific out, it’s just overall industry suckiness.”
Ghost - Spillways
The brand new video for this velvet-curtained, piano-spangled glitterbomb (from latest album Impera) finds mastermind Tobias Forge shimmying in bat wings and cardinal robes, as a world of Jim Steinman-sized grandeur unfolds around him and his rockstar Ghouls. All that plus gallons of dry ice, dancers with bleeding eyes, Old Testament verse (Job 10:1, for any Bible watchers reading this)… Surely it’s just a matter of time now before we’re hit with Ghost: The Musical, right?
Zach Tabori - Where We Start
Gen Z beatnik Zach Tabori likes to keep his listeners guessing. Half-Turkish, based in Los Angeles and dressed in orange tones that make him look more than a bit culty, the young singer/songwriter has veered from Frank Zappa-esque avant-prog to snappy, sunshiney pop. Now, he’s taken a dreamier turn with this mesh of giant melody, gauzy synths and soaring guitar crescendo. Find more on his cracking album Soft Boiled, out now – trust us, it’s eggscellent (okay okay we’re done now…).
Chris Shiflett - Long, Long Year
The Foo Fighters guitarist has had a full-on year already, for obvious reasons. Now, in a break from his day job, he’s embracing his alt-country side with this lush new solo single – all liquid pedal-steel sunshine and guitar twangs and warm backing harmonies. It’s been billed as a bridge between his Californian roots and Nashville, Tennessee, where he recorded the track. “I spent a lot of time alone at my studio in L.A. during the first part of the lockdown just woodshedding tunes,” says Chris. “The line ‘It’s been a long, long year’ was rattling around my head for obvious reasons, but I framed it as a love song.”
All Them Witches - 6969 WXL THE CAGE
Time to get weird, folks – real weird. ATW’s velvet-throated frontman Charles Michael Parks Jr has long been a world music acolyte, and it comes out here in strange, menacing spoonfuls of acid noise, tribal beats and haunting spoken-word snatches. Makes most of their new psychedelic contemporaries look incredibly tame by contrast. Plus the way the video’s synced up (at the start) makes it look like the snake’s saying ‘yeahhh!’, which is obviously excellent.
Ginger Wildheart & The Sinners - Lately, Always
“We figured out that if we can’t get along with each other then the music would be ultimately worthless,” Ginger says, of new band The Sinners. “So we went to the pub and got drunk together. The next morning the music started flowing with ease. This is the sound of friendship.” Indeed, the honeyed americana glow of Lately, Always – and the ease with which it rolls into our ears – supports this assessment. The sort of yearning, acoustic-strummed rootsiness that seems to come as naturally to them as walking, and will no doubt be a joy to watch live when they tour this autumn.
Whiskey Myers - John Wayne
We have a sneaky suspicion that, come end-of-year-poll-time, Whiskey Myers' new album Tornillo will be floating around the northern end of many a list. It came out on Friday, with new single John Wayne released on the same day, and it's as funky and fruity as James Brown's favourite socks. With horns-a-pumpin', gospel-y backing vox and a Star Wars at the OK Corral-style video starring the great Danny Trejo, John Wayne as good as southern rock gets in 2022. Stuffed full of confident swagger and laced with humour, it's as if Alabama 3 were actually from Alabama rather than Brixton.