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This week there are not one but TWO singles of the week - I have been sitting on Danielson and Taylor Kirk for heaps and ages waiting to write about them, it can't have been comfortable. In fact, if I am honest, there are THREE singles nestled under my patootie, because the Body Language one is a bit ruddy good as well.
All in all, a good week for bands. Rejoice!
Single of the Week Number One!
Timber Timbre - ‘Black Water’ (Full Time Hobby)
If Taylor Kirk is going to hell, I am going with him, he knows the way. ‘Black Water’ is the first song from ‘Creep On Creepin' On’ - HANDS DOWN my favourite album so far this year; swamp music for the damned it is, slinkier than Audrey Horne dripping about in velvet and so utterly Fallen in the best (i.e. biblical) sense, you might start tempting those Apocalyptic horses with a sugar lump or two before saddling down the path to RACK and RUIN. I mean, he might be singing about 'needing some sunshine’ but don’t be fooled; Taylor wouldn’t know what to do with a primary yellow ray if it bit him. And so, as ‘a thousand white fish floating belly up’ move slowly downstream, I run round the house, locking and double-locking the doors, checking the window seals for tell-tale scrapes and sharpening a knife for 'neath my pillow. Nobody - but NOBODY - should sound this terrifying and alluring allatonce, it is music that brings out the Victorian Gentlewoman in a person; it makes me frail. You know, to listen to Timber Timbre is to have a soused handkerchief applied gently over your nose and mouth. And the marvellous thing is, you don’t even mind, you may in fact breathe that bit more deeply. How wonderfully intoxicating 'Black Water' is.
No, she’s gone.
Single of the Week Number Two!
Danielson - ‘Grow Up’ (Sounds Familyre)
There are number of bands I adore that could comfortably be described as shrill, Danielson and Oh No Ono being two who, in particular, seem to have missed their moment under the brightest, biggest spotlight. This a crashing irritant and a grand injustice, especially when Danielson can fashion a song that seems to be about arguing with your therapist and which darts like a newt, never once stopping to make anything clear or easily pinned to your parents; a high-pitched riddle. And so while I thought there was a line about being told to ‘grow a pair’ it seems - as ever - this was pure projection, because ‘Grow Up’ is about teenage proclivities and obsessions; being given the keys to the adult kingdom but not being allowed to actually use them. ‘You’re not my Mummy, don’t even try’ is what Daniel definitely does say, and I am fond of this, the strop as song. There’s even a bit which goes ‘Ooooooo, what does THAT MEAN?’ like you might in a row. Essentially, it is very like hearing next door’s teenager getting all eggy at her parents - but set to some music that has no brakes on, and overall much easier to discern without recourse to a glass held up to the wall. Ridiculous, het-up and with a sense of momentum that would shame a steam train, Danielson are definitely not getting any shitter.
Body Language - ‘You Can’ (Double Denim)
‘You Can’ is a slow jam, it is the sort of song the term ‘slow jam’ was made for. This is release number four on Double Denim, and they definitely are a label worth smashing your piggy bank for - albeit slowly, and with a paper hammer, because they aren’t churning out sevens like cheap gypsies on a lucky spree; there’s a nice, stately pace to their release schedule. As for Body Language, they’ve ‘got time to kill and they’ve ‘got to fill it up,’ in the only way they know how. So, even though it is all quite what can you possibly mean, Body Language?, I do know what whip-crack hi-hats signify and I also know what those wavery synths are saying, I'm not ruddy daft. 'You Can' isn’t about pop socks, Hobbycraft cross-stitch kits, Dawn Bibby, removable hair on tiny combs, miniature china rabbits or HDMI cables. It is, however, a really, really amazing song about Special Times, which ideally would be dedicated to all the lovers by a permanently damp DJ. Like syrup, it is - which is why I will recommend you do not listen to it, unless your favoured companion is reachable by taxi.
Jyager feat. Seb Rochford - ‘Do It All Tha Time’
When someone offers you something to hear for your column even though strictly speaking it is not going anywhere or appearing on any shop shelves because strictly speaking, none of it is allowed, you should always say yes - even if it goes in the bin shortly after. ‘Do It All Tha Time’ did not, mainly because I have been trying to work out exactly what Jyager does do all the time; I am wondering if it is Scrabble. I bet he knows all the non-U Q words. He still can't spell 'the' but that doesn't really matter because he can write a ridiculous hip-hop jam that bodyslams - rather than booty-bumps - your ears. Swap your email address for it here.
Psychologist - ‘Waves of OK’ EP (Not Even)
Because I have in my possession a couple of Scanner twelves from the olden days of yore, I was willing to be patient with Psychologist. He wants us to listen to a distorted phone call message called 'Together Clinging' in which a young woman drears on about promoting a UK Garage night, littering her speech with BASE-ICK-LEEs and making me gladder than ever I left the capital 18 months ago - this being exactly the sort of dread, pointless nonsense you have to listen to on the flipping bus every flipping day there. Then, in 'Comes In Waves' we get his piano yearn proper - and it is sparse, vaguely Gospel in aspect and of course, redolent of that other Man With A Piano & Some Problems, Mr. James Blake. Unfortunately Psychologist, though in principle occupying roughly the same block of barren, loveless flats, leaves me absolutely cold. Songs like 'Waves Of OK' sound like wailing for the amusement of the creator, rather than polishing the wail into something rather more universal and communicative. Oh dear, I am not keen.
Singing Adams - ‘Bird On The Wing’ (Records Records Records)
The Singing Adams is him out of the Broken Family Band, who most upstanding coves seemed to have something of a soft spot for, not least because him out of them had quite a way with tween song banter; a dying art, I feel. Anyway, I am reliably informed ‘Bird On The Wing’ is about remembering someone who has died; this may make up for how slight it sounds.
Glasvegas - ‘Euphoria, Take My Hand' (Columbia)
Somehow or other it is possible to avoid bands entirely, even if your whole week’s natural order and schedule is driven by Mondays When Records Happen and Sundays When They Must Be Criticised and Wednesdays When They Must Be Loaded Onto Some Sort Of Listening Device. I would not change this for the world of course, but strangely Glasvegas have entirely passed me by; shadows flickering at the periphery but never quite emerging with grins and/or flick-knives. By all of which I mean, I have quite literally never heard them. So though I am unable to tell you if 'Euphoria, Take My Hand' is representative, I can tell you it is as glossy as brylcreem, unabashed in its expression of fulsome sentiment, and big on drama, employing an emotional palette not entirely dissimilar to that utilised by the dread U2. You know, if I met Euphoria, I think I'd be after more than a hand-hold.
Starfucker - ‘Death As A Fetish’ (Polyvinyl)
The cataclysmically badly-named Starfucker really are amiable, they have written a song with a title redolent of Goths, that brings on none of the attendant mopery. 'Death As A Fetish' is a sunny blast of scuffed perkiness, and even though everything is buried in the mix as if clarity were a swear, it doesn't matter. There are a few too many whiny, arcade synths on it for my liking, but this is a small gripe not worth chucking plates or ripping up photos over.
The Goldberg Sisters - ‘Shush’ (PIAS)
'Shush' is very trad, it is 'Woman' by Mr. Lennon with all the guitar lines dipped in chrome. This makes it sound supremely irritating, but in fact it is rather pleasant.
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