I get it. You want to be a hip, young buck with your hippity hop and your rock and/or roll but you’re just too damn busy to keep up with the endless guttural scream that is music in 2017. Thank God for Singles Club…
Queens of the Stone Age – The Way You Used To Do
Never mind the King, the Queens are back! ‘The Way We Used to Do’ is the first taster from new album Villains (due out on 25.8.17) and it is quite something. Marrying the maudlin falsetto of Like Clockwork with the more upbeat, fun sound of Rated R is no mean feat but Josh Homme and co manage it here and in spades.
Various chunky riffs vie for attention over Homme’s hypnotic voice like a pit full of snakes slithering and slinking over each other. I loved QOTSA’s last album Like Clockwork but this new song is more insistent than anything on that album and the hard rocking crescendo is truly a thing of beauty. A very good sign of things to come.
The Killers – The Man
The Killers are many things but they are never boring. They have gone from indie disco heroes to Americana spewing, Bruce Springsteen wannabes to stadium rockers in their long career and ‘The Man’ is another leap into the unknown. Whether it is a positive step or not is definitely up for debate however.
Brandon Flowers latest song owes more to Queen than anyone else and while it is certainly different, I’m not so sure it is actually any good. The Killers should be applauded for doing whatever the fuck they want but ‘The Man’ feels like a band looking backwards rather than pioneering something new. Ultimately, ‘The Man’ is a risk that doesn’t pay off.
Muse – Dig Down
And so to Muse, yet another enigma. Wondrous live band but perhaps a little too ubiquitous. One of the most unique artists of their generation but also bereft of any actual good music for a number of years. ‘Dig Down’ is slow, ponderous and unoriginal. It is asinine to constantly compare a bands more recent output with their heyday but to put ‘Dig Down’ next to anything on Origin of Symmetry is to compare Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen with Macbeth.
It’s been so long since Muse released a relevant, interesting song that it now feels like they never will…
Everything Everything are a band with a similar career trajectory to Muse, based around outlandish music and a rabid fan base. Crucially, they are still able to write a tune. ‘Can’t Do’ is a wonderfully catchy slice of indie weirdness that is perfect for the summer. One of their best songs yet. The video is suitably weird also.
Wolf Alice‘s debut album My Love is Cool became an instant classic on release in 2015 and the frantic ‘Yuk Foo‘ is a violent taster from upcoming album Visions of a Life. It is initially jarring to hear the band go in such a heavy direction but it suits them. A whole album of this might be a little much but as a one off ‘Yuk Foo’ helps to display a different, more aggressive side of the London band.
Finally, a return to a band I covered a couple of weeks ago. I was pretty damn disappointed with Arcade Fire‘s comeback song ‘Everything Now’ but the second song released from that album is an improvement. ‘Creature Comfort’ finds Win Butler and Régine Chassagne trading vocals over a fast tempo beat that sounds more The Suburbs than Reflektor. The Cure are the most obvious influence but more than anyone else ‘Creature Comfort’ sounds like Arcade Fire and while the song isn’t quite a return to form, it is a step in the right direction.
For every Arcade Fire album ranked from worst to best, see here.