As the world slowly returns to normality, it's only right to look back on the things that have proven to be a comfort over the last year and a bit, and you know what? Despite all the delayed releases and cancelled tours, new music hasn't let up for a moment.
There's never been a week where we've struggled to pick eight new tracks with something to offer, and so it proves again this week. But first, congratulations to Cardinal Black, whose debut single This Is How It Feels won last week's tournament, beating Billy F Gibbons's My Lucky Card (opens in new tab) and Blackberry Smoke & Warren Haynes's All Rise Again (opens in new tab) by a not insignificant margin.
So here's Cardinal Black again, before we leave them in the rear view mirror and head on down this week's new music highway.
The Glorious Sons - Daylight
The Canadian rockers crash back into our lives with a lightning clap of raw, Stones-y guitar, drums and one of their strongest tunes yet. “We were more interested in making something that sounds energised than organised,” says singer Brett Emmons, whose Axl-via-Kurt delivery has acquired a Mick Jagger-esque edge here. “It’s by far the closest representation to how the band feels performing a set in a club.” Having seen them live in pre-pandemic times (they were excellent) we can vouch for that.
The Dead Deads ft Corey Taylor - Murder Ballad II
Dead Taylor? Corey Dead?? The hybrid names may not catch on, but the song sure as hell should. The Slipknot frontman’s melodic, tender side (the side that loves musical theatre, as well as industrial metal) compliments the rising Tennessee stars’ smoke-ringed outlaw grunge fusion, resulting in something beautifully dark and seductive. Oh and it’s mega-catchy too. Keep an ear out for The Dead Deads’ album, Tell Your Girls It’s Alright, for this and more good stuff in August.
Mdou Moctar - Taliat
If Tuareg rock isn’t already in your vocabulary, this is a great place to start. Hailing from a desert village in rural Niger, Mdou Moctar learned his chops from a compelling mix of traditional Saharan music and Eddie Van Halen videos. Now world-renowned and on his seventh record (Afrique Victime, out now) he’s at the height of his heady powers on joyous, transportive tracks like this one. A dazzling player with real depth and imagination.
The Tea Party - Summertime
Heavy ‘Moroccan roll’ innovators The Tea Party (no, not that right-wing Republican movement that had a ‘moment’ about a decade ago) are back with a new single and it’s...erm, a straight-up feelgood rocker. And you know what? It’s an absolute delight. If you could use a little light in your life, with depth and darkness lurking just in the background, you could do a lot worse. “The Tea Party offers up this song with the hope that it might become an anthem for an appropriate celebration,” singer Jeff Martin says.
The Damn Truth - This Is Who We Are Now
There’s something of Beth Hart in singer Lee-La Baum’s pipes (along with a generous, raw-throated helping of Janis Joplin) which lends a tenderness to this new, freewheeling shitkicker from the Montreal rockers. Fans of Rival Sons looking for their next ‘cool new classic rock’ fix would do well to look this way. Plus they do it all upside down in this video, which is pretty cool in a slightly disorientating way.
No Fit State - Tightrope
If the idea of the QOTSA, Jack White and Royal Blood in a blender sounds like your idea of fun, you’ll want to investigate this new one from Leeds-based singer/multi-instrumentalist No Fit State – or Danny Yates, as his mates call him (we assume). A steel-cut cocktail of tight guitar punches and nu-blues vibes with a big, driving chorus, it’s a cool yet pumped, energising affair.
Velvet Insane - Backstreet Liberace feat. Dregen & Nicke Andersson
Swedish glam rockers Velvet Insane are here to remind you that 1973 is still very fondly thought of by many, and Backstreet Liberace is their latest attempt to capture that glitz and glamour. With guest appearances from Dregen and Nicke Andersson of The Hellacopters, it sounds like The Wildhearts covering Sweet. Or Sweet covering The Wildhearts. Either works. Backstreet Liberace is a stack-heeled, glitter-dusted delight. New album Rock ’n’ Roll Glitter Suit is due on July 16.x
Creamer - Disconnect
A couple of years ago we stumbled across a song by Creamer we really loved. It was called Drugs No More, and was the kind of ELO-meets-Todd Rundgren power pop only the truly gifted can produce. Then, to all intents and purposes, Creamer disappeared. You know where this is going, right? Creamer are back back BACK, and Disconnect picks up right where Drugs No More left off. Mainman Philip Creamer (brother of the Texas Gentlemen's Daniel) clearly knows his way around a melody, and we look forward to hearing more.