You may not have noticed, but up-and-coming LA rockers Guns N' Roses released a new single last week. So they should be in our latest Tracks of the Week feature, right?
Well, no. However excited we are over the return of GN'R to the studio - and we are literally quite excited - they don't need our help. We'd much rather use the contest to celebrate new music from younger artists where we can, like last week's winner, Welsh band Florence Black. Their Sun & Moon trumped The Byson Family's Riches and Buckcherry's Wasting No More Time, so congratulations to them. And here they are again, before we proceed with this week's hot rock action.
The Moon City Masters - No Warning
They’ve done it again. The twin masters of the magical Moon City are back to rock us mere earthlings to within a giddy inch of our lives – this time with a yacht-come-disco banger that channels early Steely Dan, the debut Boston album and a whole bunch of other nostalgic flavours. All of it doused in a sackful of glitter and good vibes. The perfect pick-me-up for bad times, and a cherry on top of the good ones.
Tremonti - Marching In Time
One of rock’s few legit guitar heroes without an ego the size of Brazil, Mark Tremonti comes into his own as a singer on this powerful, soaring epic from his side project’s new LP (also called Marching In Time, out September 24). Alter Bridge fans will adore the mix of scale and intimacy that calls to mind Blackbird in places, albeit with extra layers of beefy, muscle-crunching heaviosity. Sometimes it really is the quiet ones you need to watch out for.
Starbenders - No One Listened
Georgia’s glitziest, glitteriest rockers this side of the 80s are back with a reflective – yet totally banging – new single. Inspired by (now disbanded) fellow Atlantans ATL, it’s like a ‘00s R&B love-in filtered through the enigmatic spirits of Bowie and Bolan. “When the chorus drops, we invite you into our anthem,” frontwoman Kimi Shelter says. “This is for the Zodiac, our fans, and for all beings who feel like they have no control. Together, we're not alone. Together, we're a force.” Damn straight.
Troy Redfern - Sanctify
Described in his press release as a purveyor of “honest, heavyweight blues”, British blueser Troy Redfern has a gnarly, rollicking spring in his step on Sanctify – a big stompy knees-up that sounds like it was recorded in a rusty bucket in the Sonoran desert, or something... and we definitely mean that as compliment. If Dr Feelgood came of age in Texas instead of Canvey Island, they might have made something like this. Like what you hear? His new album, The Fire Cosmic, is top-notch stuff and it’s out now.
Don Broco - One True Prince
The British genre-mashing mavericks have released one of their moodiest, most immersive numbers yet. “One True Prince is about finding comfort in the fact that whatever you’re going through and however bad it may feel, nothing lasts forever,” singer Rob Damiani says. It’s a gear change following the industrial-laced, alt rock-come-metal punch of previous single Gumshield (and the bizarro sci-fi football fun of Manchester Super Reds No.1 Fan) but one that suits them excellently here.
Kills Birds - Rabbit
The Dave Grohl-approved noiseniks crash-landed into our earholes with this taste of their upcoming album Married. Brimming with intent and over in a flash – with Nina Ljeti throwing down the gauntlet for rising rock frontmen and women everywhere – it’s the shot of rabid art-punk mania and relentlessly chugging guitars we all need to make us feel a bit more alive sometimes.
Creamer - Peace & Understanding
Back in April Disconnect was a track of the week for Nashville-based Philip Creamer, and now Peace & Understanding is doing the same. As per Disconnect, it sounds like it's somehow been beamed in from a lost 70s radio broadcast, slightly more Big Star than Boston, but undeniably lovely. "Peace And Understanding appeared to me in a dream-like vision during my second reading of Ekhart Tolle’s masterful A New Earth," says Philip. "Strip away the illusion of the waking dream, and like magic there you are, here with me, all together now. Peace And Understanding is a psych-rock anthem for community, and unity."
The Stranglers - If Something’s Gonna Kill Me (It Might As Well Be Love)
At their best The Stranglers sound like no one else, and If Something’s Gonna Kill Me (It Might As Well Be Love) really couldn't be anyone else. It has the atmospheric, dislocated feel of Feline-era songs like European Female, with keyboard parts that could only have come from the late, great Dave Greenfield. After over four decades in the game, the Stranglers at their prettiest (and this is very pretty) still sound uniquely sinister. Nice horns, too.