New Release Roundup 9th August 2019

Oddity Road – Night Like No Other: This new single from Sheffield indie lads Oddity Road is their strongest yet. Strong 2000s pop-punk influences here, with heavy riffs and pounding drums on the chorus, which is extremely catchy. Very nice. 80%

Katy Perry – Small Talk: A forgettable track here from Katy, sounds like an album filler track that she could knock out in a few minutes. Like a phoned in performance for a movie soundtrack. 30%

Temples – You’re Either On Something: I have had this song in my head constantly since I first heard it’s main hook. ‘You’re Either On Something’ has amazing vocal production over a trademark Temples catchy melody but with a more focused sound than their previous efforts. 91%

Nikita Bassi – Satin: This is the debut single from Nikita, and ‘Satin’ shows real promise. A beautiful, low-key ballad with a soft twinkly instrumental paired with Nikita’s strong but delicately controlled vocals makes for very pleasant listening indeed. 90%

Keane – Love Too Much: This is very, very bad. Keane had a few (2) good singles back in the day but this sounds like a Take That album track. 10%

Spector – Half Life: This new Spector tune, their second single this year, is a great, shimmery piece of indie synth-pop. It really bops along with bouncy synths and a groovy bassline; very promising for a potential new full length project from the lads. 82%

Mystery Jets – Screwdriver: An amazing new single from Mystery Jets, Screwdriver sounds massive. Could almost be a (good) Bond tune kind of massive. Gritty riffs and poignant lyrics and constantly shifting speed and tone, this is simply great. 95%

The Big Moon- It’s Easy Then: A great grower of a comeback single from The Big Moon here! With a slightly fuller sounding, mellower production than their debut album, “It’s Easy Then” makes me very excited for a new project from them. 85%

Love Fame Tragedy – Backflip: ‘Love Fame Tragedy’ is a new project from Matthew, frontman of the Wombats, Gus from alt-j, Joey from Pixies, Matt from Soundgarden and Lauren Aquilina. ‘Backflip’ is an understated perfect piece of groovy indie-pop that lives up to the hype all those names bring. More please. 90%

Nykki – No Cry (Stripped Version): This stripped version of rising Czech pop star’s debut single ‘No Cry’ shows a different side to the track, really highlighting her strong vocals and the strength of the song at it’s core. 80%
Dram ft. H.E.R. & Watt – The Lay Down: The combination of these three together and a really soulful, chill instrumental backing makes for extremely smooth listening. One of the strongest R&B tracks of the year so far, with the vocal harmonies on the cut being exceptional. 91%

Papur Wal – When He’s Gone: This new tune from Welsh indie outfit Papur Wal starts off as a really intimate, acoustic ballad before bursting into a wall of lo-fi, distorted riffs and off-kilter vocals. Love it. 83%

CRAY – idontwannatalkaboutlove: This new single from Cray is an essential synth-pop bop. Irresistible synth grooves and loops back Cray’s smooth, but powerful vocals. It’s not too over the top either, a really great, focused track. 92%

Leadley – Chic: Her first single since last year’s self titled EP, ‘Chic’ is a smooth, catchy new single from ‘Leadley’, with the minimalist drum backing and subtle synths peppered throughout highlighting the strength & tone of her voice. Nice. 90%

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Tramlines 2016 – Saturday Review

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Tramlines 2016 was bigger and better than ever, with one of the most diverse line-ups of any festival in the UK, and with a bigger main stage location for this year, this was not one to miss.

The first act of the day I went to see were Living Body, in the beautiful setting of the Folk Forest stage situated in Endcliffe Park. This was Living Body’s first ever live show, and once they got set up you’d never have guessed. With members of Vessels and Sleater-Kinney joining frontman Jeff T. Smith, this was a great new discovery, and a perfect way to kick off the festival.

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Living Body on the Folk Festival Stage
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Little Comets on Main Stage

Over to the main stage next for Teeside favourites Little Comets. Their upbeat indie anthems drew a big crowd for 3 in the afternoon, providing a perfect summery soundtrack to what was turning out to be a really sunny day. Their track ‘Dancing Song’ lived up to it’s name, getting the whole Ponderosa moving.

Next I stumbled upon Sly & The Family Drone at the City Hall’s Ballroom stage. Perhaps the most interesting act of the day, they played their set of unique heavy dance music in the middle of the ballroom floor to a small, but completely mesmerised crowd.

Daniel Whitehouse at the Cathedral was another unexpected find, with his great, melancholic acoustic set a nice fit for the amazing setting of the Cathedral.

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Daniel Whitehouse in Sheffield Cathedral

Kate Jackson, ex-Frontwoman of the Long Blondes, was next up at the O2 Academy, who played a solid set of songs from her latest album British Home Movies, as well as a few new tracks.

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Kate Jackson at O2 Academy Sheffield

Following on from Kate were Sheffield favourites The Crookes. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the crowd for them was one of the liveliest of the event. Blasting through songs from their new album Lucky Ones as well as a selection of tracks from their earlier albums, this was a real local crowd pleasing set, with closer Afterglow really getting the Academy shifting.8db16a7f2f

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The Crookes at O2 Academy Sheffield

The final act of the day for me were Mystery Jets. Kicking things off with Telomere, the first track off their latest album Curve Of The Earth, the band were incredibly tight throughout the set. Bubblegum, another track and lead single from the album was another set highlight, and earlier hit Two Doors Down provided another big moment towards the end.

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Tramlines is great for the city of Sheffield, and the venues within it. All of the venues that the festival utilised and created had a real bustling atmosphere to them, and almost all of the fringe venues were too busy to get in, and the lineup is one of the most diverse of any UK festival I have seen this year.

Earlybird tickets for next years festival are available now at only £25, and if the lineup is as half as good as this years’ that is a real bargain.

5/5

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