We’ve made it into June and the year is flying by. Before we know it, festival season will have come and gone and we’ll be looking towards Christmas and writing our end-of-year lists – and what impressive lists they’re going to be. Our inbox is yet again brimming with amazing music. Here are just a few of the songs that have delighted our ear buds over the past week or so.
Owen – ‘Lost’
Ahead of new album ‘The King of Whys’ and an appearance at ArcTanGent Festival, Mike Kinsella has unveiled ‘Lost’, the latest heartbreaking song from his Owen moniker. Soft and genteel, the delicate guitars and upright bass leave plenty of emphasis on the lyrics – which are as touching and heartbreaking as you’ve come to expect: ‘A ghost without a house to haunt, the last of my feral friends. I know you’re lonely but don’t waste your breath telling me you want what I have. No one believes you’.
Grieving – ‘Ownership’
With an in-your-face opening that makes way for more melodic guitar in the vein of Seafood or Sharks, Grieving are not messing about. When the vocals kick in, they recall Eagulls while the shout of ‘Stop thinking of me’ is one that will grab anyone’s attention. There are also passionate shouts of ‘why’ as the song leads to its expertly crafted climax.
Monarks – ‘You Were My Fire’
One of the final bands added to 2000 Trees Festival (and when have the organisers there ever let us down with their bookings?), Monarks are a young band very much in the vein of Twin Atlantic. This song also throws in elements of the British emo movement of the early 2000s – think Hundred Reasons or Hell is for Heroes – before then going on to break down in a Biffy style and subsequently being put together with the dark lyrics: ‘I could never touch again with the blood that’s on my hands’.
No Joy – ‘A Thorn in Garland’s Side’
Signed to Topshelf Records, this new song from the Canadian shoegazers combines melodic dream-pop moments with an experimental, noisy and psychedelic sound that touches upon everyone from My Bloody Valentine to Deerhunter. With a phone ringing in the mix at the start and a finish drenched in feedback, it’s one of those songs that rewards repeated listen.
Home Lives – ‘20 Something’
Released on Bandcamp and as an aqua-coloured tape, All the Dogs You’ve Ever Known is a new EP from a New York duo that comes complete with a canine-based cover. A lo-fi pop gem, the song offers a bittersweet assault on what it’s like to be a young adult in today’s society and all its ‘morbid shit’. As the band relent about being ‘just another 20-something with nothing to do’ and how ‘school’s been over for eternity, now I work till 5.30’, there’s a pulsating energy throughout the hooks and a wicked sense of humour when they ask ‘does my dog smell defeat on me?’ (Tip – you may have to press the back button on the Bandcamp embed to hear this specific song, but the whole EP is worth your time)
Sugar Candy Mountain – ‘Eye on You’
Debuted on Far Out Magazine, the video for Joshua Tree-based Sugar Candy Mountain’s new song ‘Eye on You’ was directed by their label Super Fan 99’s very own Luke Barham. With nods to Woody Allen and a tale of potential stalking, the music fits this eerily charming tale. With its melodic guitars in the vein of Real Estate and soulful vocals that bring back another era, there’s a sweetness and chilled-out atmosphere you can’t help but fall for.
Jolé – ‘New Start’
After his previous band toured pretty constantly for five consecutive years, Josh Oliver – now known as Jolé – couldn’t have made his intentions clearer than with naming this song ‘New Start’. Chilled out but with a drive behind it, there are elements of Adem or Owen in the understated instrumentation but he mixes it up with the emotional resonance of Keaton Henson. The song tugs at the heartstrings but also has a charming DIY edge to it.