The best new rock songs you need to hear right now, including The Struts, Orianthi, Beaux Gris Gris & The Apocalypse and more

Tracks of the Week artists
(Image credit: Press materials)

Things got a little fraught in our Tracks Of The Week competition this week, with rising Mexican stars The Warning doing battle with UK goth punks Lesbian Bed Death. Accusations of impropriety and fraud were bandied about as the votes piled up, with LBD even claiming that victory for them would be a "kick in the balls" for "the industry". Cripes!

"It would be lovely to wipe a few smiles off some corporate faces," noted LBD, apparently unaware that the competition is won by smaller bands nearly every week. And so the votes flooded in, with droves of LBD fans in Azerbaijan and Belize and Greenland and Guyana and the Åland Islands all combining their considerable might to ensure the band's eventual triumph. 

So congratulations to Lesbian Bed Death. Industry balls have been well-and-truly kicked. And congratulations to The Warning, for not winning. And congratulations to Joanne Shaw Taylor, for coming third, albeit with a collection of votes so dwarfed by the others that we're not even sure why we mention it. 

Here's your winners again.

And now it's on with this week's battle. We hope you enjoy our eight selections.


The Middlenight Men - The Middlenight Men Theme

Nick Hughes (also in Terrorvision on trumpet duties, and formerly of The Rode Models, Love Zombies and others) and his band of masked pop rock crusaders come bearing the first taste of their second album, Issue 2. Bold, bright and fizzing, The Middlenight Men Theme is a Wildhearts-esque cocktail of heavy bite and sugar, with a bittersweet aftertaste, all framed in a gleefully cartoon-minded, 90s-tastic video narrative. Nice.

Gen & The Degenerates - Girls! Feat Uninvited

Singer/lyricist-in-chief Genevieve Glynn-Reeves leads a deliciously shouty yet sharp racket on this driving new number, all insistent, stabbing guitars and 21st century-ified riot grrrl sensibilities. Hailing from Lancashire and Cambridge, they’re a young, tight-knit gaggle of Metallica and old blues fans who’ve ended up sounding like the lovechildren of Gang Of Four, Bikini Kill and Idles (“accidentally punk”, as Genevieve put it to us). Find more fireballs like this on their new album Anti-Fun Propaganda, which has just come out.

Beaux Gris Gris & The Apocalypse - Satisfy Your Queen

With roots in Louisiana, California and the UK, Beaux Gris Gris & The Apocalypse have always applied an eclectic, vivid approach to classic blues and rock’n’roll tropes – plus killer videos, masterminded in-house. Satisfy Your Queen finds them carrying on in that tradition with a hard shot of full-pelt, no-mercy blues rock, spiced up with freakoid undertones and wry lyrical touches (‘you’re so sussie like a French dessert’, Greta croons, looking like a mardi gras vampire with her fangs and technicolour glamourpuss chic). Cool, sexy and fun. Catch them live in the UK in April.

Little Strange - Alright Now

No it's not a cover of the Free classic, but still pretty damn tasty. The Manchester rockers’ Alright Now is a moodier affair, mixing indie smoke with toe-tapping bluesy grooves and a chorus you can readily sing along to. Kind of like Macclesfield heroes The Blinders, but jollier and dancier (imagine them throwing shapes after a few beers and you’re in the right ballpark) – indeed, with their mantra of 'alt-rock for all', likeability is clearly high on their musical agenda. And that’s no bad thing.

Orianthi feat Joe Bonamassa - First Time Blues

Aussie-born, LA-based guitarist Orianthi (formerly Alice Cooper’s touring axe-slinger, with stints for Dave Stewart, Richie Sambora, Michael Bolton and others also under her belt) makes a great pairing with Joe Bo’ on this slick, swaggering piece of heavy blues rock, with both virtuosos laying down nicely eye-popping but melody-driven solos. One of those tracks that feels loose and rock-solid at the same time, its moody, emotive vocal lines show off Orianthi (like Joe, incidentally) as a guitarist who now has a serious set of pipes, to complement her chops.

The Mysterines - Stray

The hotly tipped Merseyside rockers are back, and they’re on fierce form for this commanding mix of vocal wooze, dark textures and grungy guitars. If Courtney Love fronted Queens Of The Stone Age in the 90s, it might have sounded like this. “Stray focuses on the aimless and untamed nature of the polarities of behaviour that we experience when dealing with suffering,” says singer/guitarist Lia Metcalfe. “Whether it’s guilt, paranoia or unexplained feelings of grandiosity. Often when the hands of loneliness have a firm grip over one’s eyes it can turn dangers into open doors inviting you in. We find a certain point of no return and we’re often led astray.”

Snub - Blowflies

Hailing from the great city of Melbourne, Australia, Snub sound like a great lost MTV-era grunge band, kinda L7 meets Sonic Youth meets Starfish meets somebody else we haven't already mentioned. Blowflies has several great riffs, a vocal that sneers lackadaisically in the manner of Kim Gordon, and a video that features a brief cameo from an excellent dog. "Blowflies was the first song we wrote as a band and combines all of the signatures of Snub’s sound," say the band. "We love playing this song and after a long incubation period we’re proud to release this baby into the world." We, for one, welcome that baby. 

The Struts - Heaven's Got Nothing On You

The second new track from The Struts this month is described by the band's UK representatives as a "double A-side companion" to the earlier How Can I Love You (Without Breaking Your Heart), while their US counterparts have christened it a "B-side bop". Either way, Heaven's Got Nothing On You finds Derby's finest in reflective mood, with a delightfully breezy chorus and a lyric that contains the line "Daddy I'm your dancer, put me on a pole." "The mix of a nostalgic progression met with a sexy contemporary lyric is what really excited me, initially," says frontman Luke Spiller. "It sounds like the inside of my brain most days. It has my LA life bursting out of its musical bars."

Polly Glass
Deputy Editor, Classic Rock

Polly is deputy editor at Classic Rock magazine, where she writes and commissions regular pieces and longer reads (including new band coverage), and has interviewed rock's biggest and newest names. She also contributes to Louder, Prog and Metal Hammer and talks about songs on the 20 Minute Club podcast. Elsewhere she's had work published in The Musician, delicious. magazine and others, and written biographies for various album campaigns. In a previous life as a women's magazine junior she interviewed Tracey Emin and Lily James – and wangled Rival Sons into the arts pages. In her spare time she writes fiction and cooks.

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