It's been quite a week in rock'n'roll. We learnt that Mariah Carey produced a grunge album. We watched aghast as the UK went into meltdown over a series of rock-themed cakes on The Great British Bakeoff. And we discovered you can buy a candle that smells like Lemmy.
We also had our usual Tracks of the Week battle, in which Austin Gold emerged triumphant, like a lion standing bloody and proud at a waterhole after tearing at the throat of a young springbok. Back in the consolation medal positions were SKAM and Hawxx, so well done to them too.
Below you'll find this week's selection. It's a doozy. But before you listen to our latest selection and vote for your favourite, here's a reminder of last week's chosen one.
Royal Blood - Trouble’s Coming
Back in 2014 the world and his wife (us included) lost their shit over this Brighton duo, with their bluesy bass-but-oh-wait-it’s-also-a-guitar and drums formula. Back then you’d probably have called their music blues rock. Now they’ve shaken things up with synth dashes and disco grooves, without sacrificing the heavy fuzziness that served them so well before. One-trick ponies? Not these guys.
Angeline - Helpless
When these Swedish melodic rockers formed in ‘87, as bright-eyed huge-haired youths, it all looked rather promising. Then singer Sigge got ill. Band members had national service to complete. Sigge’s replacement partied too much. Tragically Sigge passed away in 1995. Literally everything acted against them. So perhaps it’s not surprising that, of all people, they weren’t going to let a pesky pandemic stop them releasing a new belter. Close your eyes as you listen, and it’s 1987 all over again...
Starbenders - Push
Atlanta’s glam punk fireballs tap into their inner Massive Attack on this dreamy, colour-soaked whoosh of trip-hop and tripped out haze. "In a world where human contact is forbidden, is love our rebellion?” explains bassist Aaron Lecesne. “This video tugs at the darkest corners of our imaginations. It's like the monster under the bed, or in the closet, or on TV. It might not be real, but it could be."
Tyler Bryant & The Shakedown - Holdin’ My Breath
Tyler and chums are joined by Blackberry Smoke frontman Charlie Starr on vocals for this somewhat timely cut from Pressure – an album dreamt up and recorded under lockdown in Tyler’s basement. Part beefcake grunge, part southern voodoo, all rock’n’roll baby… ‘I’m still holdin’ my breath for better days,’ Tyler and Charlie cry in the chorus. Well, quite.
Emily Grogan - Join Together
Boston troubadour Emily is many things – classically trained pianist, punk rock drummer, reggae saxophonist – but here it's her astute guitarist/singer songwriter self that shines. Described as "a call to all (regardless of different labels) to put down your 'divide and conquer' tools and focus on the wondrous similarities of being a human on earth", Join Together is a smart, hooky mesh of melodious indie rock and 90s vibes and modern day hippie spirit.
The Posies - Sideways
One of those woefully overlooked bands – with the sort of songs that pierce the soul, in a deceptively sweet, pretty way – The Posies are back with their first new music since 2016 (and their first new video in...well, longer). Sideways finds the Washington-formed power poppers on gorgeously dreamy, blissed-out form. Here's hoping there's more to come.
Derek Day - Click On Me
Part crackpot scientist, part Devin Townsend-esque mastermind, Derek Day started out as a street performer in Los Angeles. Since then, as Click On Me shows, he’s found his calling as an experimental rock maverick, boosted by weapons-grade guitar chops (his CV includes support gigs with Steve Vai) and seemingly unshakeable confidence. Co-written with Living Colour’s Vernon Reid, this is odd, out-there, even borderline-painful in places, and yet there’s something about it...
The Saydes - Nightmare
You like grunge? Alice In Chains, Nirvana, Stone Temple Pilots and the like are your jam? Good, then you'll flippin' love this. Tough as old boots and moodier than Staley and Cobain having a stare-off, Nightmare finds this Canadian foursome channelling their heroes with more way more class than your average Seattle fanboys.