NEW INDIE MUSIC - WEEK 48
What's up, hipsters?! Thanks for taking a break from catching those last-minute Cyber Monday deals in order to join me for the latest edition of We Are: The Guard's New Indie Music! Now that Thanksgiving is out of the way, it's officially year-end list season for much of the blogosphere, although writing about the songs and albums that you've already listened to and formed your own opinion on isn't really our style here at WATG. Instead, we prefer to turn you on to the music that you perhaps haven't heard, which leads me on to today's playlist! 2019 may be fast approaching, but 2018 is far from done with us yet! Grab those AirPods that you blagged for less than half price on Black Friday, then, as it's time to check out the following tracks from Karen O & Danger Mouse, The Vaccines, Shy Girls, GEMS, Hozier, and plenty of others!
KAREN O & DANGER MOUSE – LUX PRIMA
Karen O and Danger Mouse?! I've never hit “play” on a track so fast in my life! Clocking in at just over nine minutes (!), this cinematically expansive collaboration between the Yeah Yeah Yeahs frontwoman and the musical superproducer is everything that I hoped it'd be and more, with Karen's vocal range on full display over a symphonic instrumental that moves from luxurious and jazzy to futuristic and science fiction-like.
THE VACCINES – ALL MY FRIENDS ARE FALLING IN LOVE
Following on from the release of their album Combat Sports earlier this year, purveyors of intoxicating anthems The Vaccines are back this November with “All My Friends Are Falling in Love.” Festival season may be a long way off yet, but something tells me that this is going to be the song that really gets the crowds going next summer, with the British indie band's sing-along melodies and relatable lyrics out in full force on this exhilarating banger.
JAGUAR DREAMS – MEAN SOMETHIN
It feels like I'm unable to go a week without featuring Jaguar Dreams, but I can't help it – the Brooklyn trio just keep on delivering! Following on from the Talking Heads-channeling “A Real Woman,” the band return with more 80s vibes on their newest single “Mean Somethin,” which starts out dark, danceable, and intoxicating, before giving way to a truly explosive chorus. Jaguar Dreams EP is out now!
WORLD CHAMPION – GUN
It's been three years, but World Champion are back and sounding funkier than ever this 2018 on their latest single “Gun.” The follow-up to Avocado Galaxy EP hears the Australian band relocating their psychedelic pop into more infectious, danceable, and radio-friendly territory, resulting in a groove that could only be made better with, in the words of Saturday Night Live's The Bruce Dickinson, “a little more cowbell.” FFO: Portugal. The Man.
SHY GIRLS – HEADFUCKED
Portland's Shy Girls provides us with an intimate look into the inner workings of his creative mind on his newest single. “I've been lost in my mind all day/I've been lost in my mind all day/All I day I lay rigging up beat tapes/All day I lay swimming in Postmates,” begins “Headfucked,” a quietly funky piece of alternative R&B that hears Dan Vidmar really tapping into that sense of claustrophobia that tends to follow on from getting lost in one's own thoughts.
GEMS – NEVER AGE
Five years on from the release of their debut EP Medusa, Washington, D.C.'s GEMS return this 2018 with Medusa Deluxe, a 14-song extended version of the EP featuring bonus tracks like “Never Age.” With the reverby vocals of singer-songwriter Lindsay Pitts coming set against the jangly, Johnny Marr-esque guitars of multi-instrumentalist Clifford John Usher, “Never Age” is a dreamy ode to mortality and everlasting love that you'll want to get lost in for days and days.
HOZIER – MOVEMENT
Hozier makes music with the kind of powerful intensity that could shake this earth to its very core, but the Irish crooner proves that he knows how to rein it in when he has to on his latest single “Movement.” The follow-up to Nina Cried Power EP finds Hozier opting for a more understated sound than what we're used to from the “Take Me to Church” singer-songwriter, with the 28-year-old restraining his voice to a near whisper in the verses, before allowing it to soar in all of its glory in the gospel-tinged choruses.
BAD CHILD – BAD CHILD
Having recently signed a deal with Universal Music, Bad Child is ready to introduce himself to the world with his eponymous debut single. The song finds the Canadian artist coming to terms with his tumultuous childhood, and more specifically, the loss of his mother, with Bad Child pouring what feels like years of pain and emotion into the track, which really takes you by the throat and doesn't let go. “'BAD CHILD' was the first song I wrote,” reveals the upcoming musician on Twitter. “I was overwhelmed with grief and I had to create something to understand myself.”
ROSENFELD – DO IT FOR ME
The temperatures may be plummeting outside, but it doesn't matter, as French artist Rosenfeld is here to crank up the heat with his kinky newest single. “Do It for Me” is an incredibly erotic song that, quite frankly, could've walked straight out of the Fifty Shades of Grey soundtrack, with Rosenfeld taking on the role of Christian Grey as he sings about his dominant fantasies over a throbbing electronic production. *Fans self*
BADFLOWER – X ANA X
Los Angeles rockers Badflower join the growing list of artists to tackle mental health issues in their music on their frenetic latest single. “'x ANA x' is about my struggles with anxiety and panic disorder as a performer. It's the scariest and most debilitating thing in my life so I made a joke out of it. You should try it,” writes Josh Katz of the song, which finds the frontman turning his nervous energy into a chaotic fever dream of sight and sound.
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Jess Grant is a frustrated writer hailing from London, England. When she isn't tasked with disentangling her thoughts from her brain and putting them on paper, Jess can generally be found listening to The Beatles, or cooking vegetarian food.