This week our three guest reviewers take on another five new tracks and give them a spin through the headphones before they then air their opinion on each.
This week's panel: Sam Meaghan, Head of A+R at ModernSky UK; Little Indie contributor Danny Shackleton; lead guitarist with rising Brighton band FUR, Harry Zwaig.
THE VAN T'S - FRESH MEAT
Released last Friday via LAB Records, the Glasgow quartet offer a caustic, reverb-laden, melodic wave of gutsy, riff-driven guitar soundscapes, accented beautifully by a rhythm section and neatly fused together by the effected harmonies of sisters Chloe and Hannah Van Thompson.
Sam Meaghan: This is sort of like a more sordid Wolf Alice. Problem is, the band haven't realised that little is more with soundscapes. The guitars are great, when you can hear them. The vocals sit neatly on top of the mix - so it's in keeping with radio worthiness. It just needs more bite. 2.5/5
Danny Shackleton: Great, fuzzy little number. Gets the toe tapping and the head nodding. Antagonising vocals fit the song perfectly. Could listen to this for days! 5/5
Harry Zwaig: Reminds me of Hole a bit, had an argument with my neighbour yesterday and this was playing the background. Trashy guitars and cool vocals. Hopefully see them in Brighton soon. 3/5
Total score: 10.5/15
EASE - UNBREAK MY BONES
New single from Stockholm synth duo - Niclas Anderstedt Lindgren and Siri Jennefelt - and one of the tracks from their second EP 'Let It Burn, Let It Die', to be released later this year.
SM: This has some "dirty vibes" floating around the track. It's no surprise that these come from Stockholm, as this is the absolute pinnacle of the mainland Europe sound. Is it just me hearing 'Carry Me' by Bombay Bicycle Club in the vocal melody too? Love the dark atmospherics. 4/5
DS: Starts off very doom and gloom, but does cheer up once the vocals kick in. It doesn’t really seem to go anywhere after that though and is a bit too synth heavy for my tastes. 2/5
HZ: Pretty intense, really cool how it builds up and the vocals stand out so well. Had a movie marathon with my neighbour yesterday and he thought this would sit really well with all the films we watched. 3/5
Total score: 9/15
RIPS - LOSING II
Taken from Brooklyn-based quartet's self-titled debut LP (produced by Austin Brown of Parquet Courts), released on UK label Faux Discx on June 16. Channelling late '70s New York City bands like Television and The Feelies - and a touch of Parquet Courts possibly in there too.
SM: Love the groove in the intro of this. Nice mid-tempo feel to it. These guys are just doing their own thing, and the song has that sort of drive to it. Love these sort of tunes where nearing the end it just sounds like they're jamming and then it just ends. Boss. 3/5
DS: Lovely slinky riff and great solo at the end, but seems to lack a chorus to really grab you. 3/5
HZ: This is really up my street. Got a great vibe to it. Borrowed some sugar from neighbour earlier and it was playing in his kitchen. I stayed for 20 minutes and we listened to it three times. 4/5
Total score: 10/15
LUSTER - YOU'VE GOT THE HEAT
Infectiously melodic toe-tapper released June 16, from the Copenhagen outfit (whose frontman is also part of Masasolo), their follow-up to last autumn's 'Sexbeat' - a Little Indie Track Of The Day - although '...Heat' is their first official single.
SM: That opening melody - it's genius! This is just an ear-worm fest. The sort of tune plenty of bands wish they had written themselves. As refreshing as a Calippo on a sunny day. Finishes too early, wish there was more. Cute and fun, what more do you want? 4.5/5
DS: Very 80s, but with a modern twist. I could almost see it on the Top Of The Pops repeats my mum watches. The vocals are very cheery and it has a decent rhythm throughout. 4/5
HZ: Whilst listening to this song, my neighbour banged on the wall so I turned it down and he shouted “what song is this?”, so I turned it back up. Great pop tune. 5/5
Total score: 13.5/15
BERRIES - WILD VOW
After debut single 'Lights' and EP 'Those Funny Things' last year, London female three-piece Berries release new single 'Wild Vow' on July 7. The first track taken from their second EP sees the band further explore their riff-driven rock with big riffs and choruses, weaving guitar and bass lines and well thought out drum patterns.
SM: I keep hearing about this band, but I can't see it, myself. The intro to this is sort of confusing. It's a bit jagged, there is no sort of feel, or "vibe", to the track itself. The tune finishes, and you sort of forget that it ever happened. 2/5
DS: Very well thought out arrangement and the vocal harmonies really stand out. Once it gets going it becomes a really good song; I really like the riffs present. Another toe tapper. 3.5/5
HZ: The guy who lives next door come over and he talked about his feelings all night, BORING! I put this on and it shut him up for a while. Think it was the sweet guitar tones. 3/5
Total score: 8.5/15