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The Hot Five - August #4

  • Published in Columns

The Hot Five – My favourite new tracks of the week, usually rounded off with a classic, obscure or alternate track from my music collection.

Track of the Week: Blossoms – ‘Blow’

The sight of a Rickenbacker bass guitar always gets me weak at the knees, but that’s not the only impressive thing on show here. With a swagger reminiscent of Arctic Monkeys and Miles Kane, and hints of psychadelia, Blossoms have created something special from a range of their strongest musical influences. The video for ‘Blow’ was filmed on a humble budget of just £60, the band commented we wanted to make the video ourselves so we shot it in the warehouse where we rehearse and built a set and got a smoke machine, £60 later we had ‘Blow’…”. ‘Blow’ is out now via Skeleton Key Records, and you can see Blossoms on their headline tour of the UK throughout October.

The Courteeners – ‘How Good It Was’

‘How Good It Was’ is the lead single from The Courteeners latest album, Concrete Love, which was released last week. It’s a strong piece of Manchester indie rock, and working with producer Joe Cross (Hurts, Chlöe Howl) has refined that rough and ready sound that The Courteeners are typically associated with. For this very reason the track, and indeed the album, will probably split opinions; however, good production and a great hook in the chorus make this a clever and complete indie rock song for me. The Courteeners will be touring Concrete Love around the UK with 18 dates this October and November.

Royal Blood – ‘Ten Tonne Skeleton’

I think back to the first time I heard ‘Out of the Black’ at the end of 2013; even back then it was clear that I’d stumbled across a pair of seriously talented musicians in Mike Kerr and Ben Thatcher. Since then their success has been exponential, and their well-documented rise has seen them complete their first headline tour of the UK, and support Arctic Monkeys at their massive shows at Finsbury Park in May 2014. Their eponymous debut album, which features album track ‘Ten Tonne Skeleton’, was released on Monday and is already shaping up to be one of the albums of the year. ‘Ten Tonne Skeleton’ is, like the rest of the album, a raucous noise of big riffs and vocal hooks; enjoy.

Zola Blood – ‘Meridian’

The mysterious Zola Blood burst onto the scene in July with their debut track ‘Grace’, an ambient piece of down-tempo electronica. Follow up single ‘Meridian’ continues with a cleverly minimalistic sound that swells to accent some great melodic moments. ‘Meridian’ also promotes Zola Blood’s debut EP of the same name, which will be released both physically and digitally in October along with the band’s first live show in London on October 9.


Hidden track of the week: Elbow – ‘New York Morning’ 

The release of The Take Off and Landing of Everything, Elbow’s sixth studio album released in March 2014, largely passed me by. A rousing set at Glastonbury Festival and some time not spent writing a dissertation has won me over, with the album’s standout track being this one, which I featured earlier in the year but never fully appreciated. The song’s lyrics follow a diary entry that lead singer Guy Garvey made on a trip to New York, documenting his feelings as “the city was waking up”.

You can follow Tom on twitter @tom_fake

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