What We've Been Listening To This Week...IDLES, Cross Wires, The Palpitations, Dois Padres, Springfield Elementary, The Happy Soul
By Jon Milton and Mark Glenister
Never has the phrase ‘Right time, right place’ seemed more apt than with the release of the new IDLES single ‘Grounds’. It’s the second track to be lifted of the recently announced new album ‘Ultra Mono’ (released 25th September) and if the rest of the album is like this, then the wait will definitely be worth it. IDLES once again prove that it’s not just about raising your voice, being part of a growing community, but it’s also about educating yourself and understanding the issues around this and other subjects. Brutally honest lyrics hit you at every turn on this track, its raw, its visceral and its relentless - it’s the sound of a band that are becoming the voice of a not just a generation, but a large cross section of humanity. It’s our single of the week (and possibly the month) and you can read more about it in our full review here.
Cross Wires released a new single ‘Swans’ this week, taken from their debut album ‘A Life Extinct’ which we reviewed back in October. It’s backed by the spritely and very fresh sounding Tab Clear which is also a great tune, and reminds us the Jam from their early days. Listen to it here.
You may not think of Bedfordshire as being a hot bed of musical talent, but there certainly seems to be an emerging scene over this way. We profiled The Palpitations’ debut EP ‘Feed the Poor, Eat the Rich’ on the blog on Friday which you can read about here and also out the same day was ‘Know Better’ by fellow Lutonians Dois Padres. The band take their inspiration from the likes of Thee Oh Sees, The White Stripes, The Black Keys and Queens of the Stone Age and ‘Know Better’ is a perky little psych/garage rock blighter with a tasty riff and plenty of energy. Its taken from their third album ‘Swamp Jams’ and you can listen to it here.
Staying in the world of garage/psych rock, and also out on Friday was the new single by Springfield Elementary, which we featured here. Doctor, Doctor is a wicked tune, sassy, head nodding garage/psych rock with a cool wig-out breakdown in the middle, written about the struggles of living with anxiety, which so they tell us in our interview, has been exacerbated in lockdown by the fact that they’re skint and B&M have run out of face masks. The band have also made a lockdown-based video to accompany the tune, which you can click on via the feature.
Talking about quirky videos, check out the one for Parasite the new single by Manchester’s The Happy Soul, who just so happen to be friends of Springfield Elementary. The band are big fans of Ed Harcourt who we featured on the blog last month, as well as Brian Wilson whose arrangements have most definitely influenced their four part harmonies. On the evidence of this single I’d also add the Divine Comedy into that mix of influences too. Parasite is what you’d want a proper pop song to sound like, clever lyrics, a dead catchy chorus, and incredibly charming.