Catch-up Time! Part 1 – May 2008

by MV

Right then, I’m back. It’s been a while. We’ve got some catching up to do. It may take some time.

Late May saw little in the way of spectacular single releases, but there were a decent bunch of tracks out there, capped by singles of the week from The Young Knives and Magic Wands. Here we go…

19th May 2008

Single of the Week: The Young Knives – Turn Tail
After an uninspiring series of singles from their generally underwhelming second album proper, the band postpone their seemingly inevitable destiny as body doubles for geography teachers by releasing their best single yet. Coincedentally, and a bit surprisingly, it’s one of the most dreamy, stirring few minutes of music I’ve heard this year. Adding strings to the mix can be a dangerous step, but here it works fantastically. Brilliant video, too, as always.

Click below for the rest of the best tracks from May…

Also out and merit-worthy:

Ashlee Simpson – Outta My Head (Ay Ya Ya) [YouTube]
Gwen-alike top pop.

Futureheads – Radio Heart [YouTube]
On autopilot, but rocket launcher autopilot.

Justice – DVNO [YouTube]
Near-perfect cut from last year’s album.

Late Of The Pier – Space And The Woods[YouTube]
Not as bonkers as The Bears Are Coming, but still solid.

Nelly feat Fergie – Party People [YouTube]
Does what it says on the tin.

Rihanna – Take A Bow [YouTube]
She can do ballads too, without them being crap.

Sons & Daughters – This Gift [YouTube]
Cheery yet gothy. Clever.

Spiritualized – Soul On Fire [YouTube]
Rock classicism, of course, but done extremely well.

* * *

26th May 2008

Single of the Week: Magic Wands – Black Magic
Male/Female synth-pop duo from Tennessee creating exactly the sort of track I’ll approve of without a second’s thought. A slow week for great singles, but this is definitely one of the Good Ones. A touch derivative, a little too polite, but two and a half minutes of reliable Instant Hits-approved female-fronted wonky pop music.

And the best of the rest…

Alphabeat – 10,000 Nights [YouTube]
Crap compared to Fascination, but still listenable.

Black Affair – It’s Real [YouTube]
Ex-Beta Band man Steve Mason fails to capture the 80s quite as well as Gruff Rhys’s Neon Neon, but has a go.

Duffy – Warwick Avenue [YouTube]
Pleasant, but oh so obvious.

Guillemots – Falling Out Of Reach [YouTube]
Their most conventional, acoustic strum of single yet. Good, but in a slightly unsettling sort of way.

Hot Club De Paris – Hey! Housebrick [YouTube]
Bonus points for the title.

Mole – Say My Name [YouTube]
Slightly cheesy but tune-packed Scandinavian guitar-pop with echoes of Melody Club or a poppier Mew.

Rogue Wave – Lake Michigan (7”) [YouTube]
Sunny, pastoral guitar-strum, with vocals recalling a breezier Band of Horses.