Tracks Of The Week #203

Tracks Of The Week #203

Just another manky Monday (Oooh Ooooo Oh), I wish it was Friday, cos that’s when Swn Festival starts, wooo hooo. But it’s not yet, so we’ll have to be happy with these banging tracks of the week. Have it!!!

elkyn – if you’re still leaving (alt version)

Why We Love It: elkyn is the musical vehicle of Joey Donnelly. And the emerging Leeds-based artist has certainly been putting it through its paces this year. Back in March elkyn’s superb debut album holy spirit social club was released, backed by an extensive UK tour alongside ST Manville followed by dates with LOVE. Now he has returned with the first of two EPs, both of which are related to his debut album. The first features three, stripped back alternative versions of songs from that record. A second EP will be out next month.

The lead track from the first EP is ‘if you’re still leaving’ rightly described as one of the “pivotal moments” from elkyn’s first album and “a masterclass in tension and release, graceful guitar work with a gorgeous ambient undertow.”

This stark, almost spectral alternative take magnifies much of the vulnerability and yearning that lies at the heart of elkyn’s music. It is a painfully honest lament in which Donnelly lays bare the fact that he finds himself on the wrong side of his own suffering. (Simon Godley)

Flevans – I Got Soul/Get To It

Funk and soul doesn’t always get the attention it deserves.  This reviewer is a huge fan of Jalapeno Records, and Flevans have released the double A side ‘I Got Soul’/’Get To It’ on the label.  Flevans is British multi-instrumentalist, producer and DJ Nigel Evans and right now this is the sort of music we need in our lives.  Big beats and grooving funk it’s music that has a smile on its face, if such a thing is possible.‘Get To It’ in particular starts off as repetitive dancefloor funky stomping Electronica but when that vocal comes in – just WOW!  The bass line is ever present and gives the track such depth.  If you need a musical pick-me-up look no further than Felvans. (Julia Mason)

jade imagine – Cold Memory

Why We Love It: Just ahead of the release of their second album, Cold Memory, this coming Friday the Australian indie three-piece jade imagine have shared with us the record’s rather excellent title track.

Speaking about the track, the band said “Cold Memory was written in Killarney after a freezing cold mid-winter swim in the southern ocean. It was inspired by the coastal bumpy drive we took to the beach and the rush of adrenaline after swimming, and then being completely ruined by march flies that were waiting to bite us on the beach after swimming. What started as a very simple almost childlike joke idea for a song became something far richer, full of light and shade.. And now I feel it represents so much, which is why we named the album after the song too. I love how songs can gain more and more meaning over time; the memory of the coldness we’ve been through over the past couple years & depending on one another when life feels dark. 
This song features a sample we created with piano and SPD percussion. One of my fave parts about the song is how the drums and bass parts become one big formidable train powering through the song. A week before we had to send the song to get mastered, Tim sent me a version with vocoder on the final chorus.”

I couldn’t have put it better myself. Have a listen and see what you think. You won’t be disappointed. (Simon Godley)

Priestgate – Some Things Never Change

Priestgate are a band who if you are lucky enough to see live you will never forget.  From the performance of charismatic lead singer Rob Scofield to the back bending gyrations of their guitarist its a breathtaking experience.  But this band are not just about the live shows and indeed new single ‘Some Things Never Change’ sees Priestgate expand their sound.  Its loud and quiet sections within the track are a pleasant surprise.  Rob’s vocal is at the forefront and is delivered with passion and emotion, ably complemented by the soaring guitars.  The raucous energy of their live shows is slightly tamed in this track, and that is not a criticism.  I already have the earworm “Do you feel better than you did before?  Did anything change at all?”.  Live I suspect this will be a goosebump-inducing track. (Julia Mason)

Pop Vulture – Lionel’s Big Problem

Why We Love It: That was the week that was for the Leeds’ art-rock outfit Pop Vulture. On Wednesday they released ‘Lionel’s Big Problem’, the second single to be taken from the band’s limited edition cassette EP, Pop Vulture 2019​-​2022. A day later legendary DJ Steve Lamacq was giving the record a spin on his BBC Radio 6 Music show. The following night Pop Vulture held a launch party for the new releases at The Vinyl Whistle record shop in their home city before making an appearance at the Oporto bar for Live at Leeds: In The City.

Now they start this week by rightly appearing in our Tracks of the Week. Talking about the new single, the band’s Luc Gibbons says “Lionel’s Big Problem is a quick message from us to the suits and ties at the top. It tells of the anxieties of ‘our Lionel’ a stereotypical businessman, as his world comes crumbling down around him. If a successful person is forced to lose their wealth (in this case due to tax evasion) suddenly it makes breaking headlines, whereas the working-class are forced to suffer in silence. It’s just ridiculous.”

Pop Vulture have recently signed to the acclaimed Leeds label and development organisation Come Play With Me. They are the first act to sign with the label outside of its renowned Singles Club and compilations. And the faith placed in them is rewarded immediately with what is a cracking little tune. Certain comparisons will be drawn with another local band Gang of Four courtesy of the angular, splintered dynamic of the guitar and the intonations in Luc Gibbons’ vocal delivery do bring Mark E. Smith readily to mind, but there is more than enough going on here to suggest that Pop Vulture are already ploughing their very own creative furrow. (Simon Godley)

Native Sun – When She

New York City alt-rockers Native Sun share new single ‘When She’, the final track to be released from their forthcoming EP Off With Our Heads via NYC indie label Grand Jury.  It’s a glorious slice of late summer breeziness with the blended vocals and guitar riffs, however it belies the fact that it is one of their most vulnerable and deeply personal songs to date.  ‘When She’ was written by frontman Danny Gomez while his mother’s health declined. While the loss of a parent is a profoundly painful experience for anyone to process, both bassist Justin Barry and drummer Nico Espinosa have experienced the same loss.  And yet the track is not melancholy in the slightest.  Quite the opposite.  It’s a recognition of the loss and a celebration.  Playing this track live will be an emotional experience for Native Sun, and I hope we get to share that experience on this side of the pond in the not too distant future.

Speaking ahead of its release, the band revealed:

‘When She’ is the most personal track we’ve written up to this point — composed during the time of my mother’s declining health and ultimate passing away.  I wrote the song from start to finish in about half an hour and post-writing it realized how it encapsulated what my reality was in that moment…seeing somebody you love fade away inside and imagining what that must be like.  I always found it interesting how the cheeriest sonically sounding track turned out to be the most somber lyrically, the paradox of reality”.

“When Danny showed us that song, it was really emotional”, Justin Barry (bass) says, “Everyone in this band has lost a parent. It’s all something we share and have bonded over, music is all we have”.  The power of music is a very precious thing. (Julia Mason)

moa moa – ‘Boy Girl’.

Why We love it: Inventive, infectious and wonderfully playful, moa moa‘s new single ‘Boy Girl’ explores the anxieties and innocence of childhood and urges itself never to love touch with your innerchild. This wonky gem stirs together elements of harmonic psychedelia, gaze guitars and wonky pop melodies, it’s doing hopscotch with the Flaming Lips and patta-cake with Superorganism, addictive and ridiculously refreshing. I love this!

The group’s 2021 single ‘Coltan Candy’ secured heavy duty 6Music play. Produced by Dan Carey and released on the redoubtable Speedy Wunderground label, it sold out in just one day.

moa moa say:

“’Boy Girl’ is about exploring the stream-of-conscious-like mentality of being a child. From the irrational fear of sitting boy, girl, boy, girl… to the freedom of demanding to do precisely whatever you want, all the time. It made me reflect on how I felt about myself and the world when I was growing up, and the importance of never losing touch with that inner child as an adult.” (Bill Cummings)

MörmaidWe Love We Dive

Why we love itMörmaid is Oslo producer / songwriter Live Sollid, a former jazz student with touchstones including Grimesfka Twigs and SOPHIE. Her debut single “We Love We Dive”.. is a haunting and impressive first offering, entwined crystal clear harmonies that pirouette down and undulating rhythms that are burnished with glacial synths. Like diving deep into a ethereal and experimental pop pool, this explorative pop is an affecting first step for Mörmaid, who looks set to be a polymath artist in the rich lineage of the likes of BjörkArca or even her compatriot Jenny Hval. She’s a new signing to Anna Prior’s new Beat Palace label and her debut EP Push Pullwill be out 18th November. (Bill Cummings)

God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.