Artist: The Spitfires
Song: “Over And Over Again”
Mod, is that you? Recognizing the retro 60s influences is usually easier to manage than a sung British accent (think about it, when can you actually tell?), but The Spitfires’ latest has both. A modern injection of rock, some slick infusion of tight brass, and an infectious gang vocal breakdown easily slide “Over And Over Again” into hallowed territory. As memorable as it is empowering, this tune is an instantly searing anthem.
Artist: The Spook School
Song: “Less Than Perfect”
Album/EP: Could It Be Different?
Spunky and youthful but also mildly melancholic, this is the kind of diamond in the rough that indie fans clamour for. Lo-fi guitars’ simplistic melodies tie this indie rock/Brit pop amalgamation together, but it’s The Spook School’s ensemble chorus that really steals the show. Basically think of it as ‘coming of age, the emotion: the song’.
Artist: Tame Impala
Song: “List of People (To Try And Forget About)”
Album/EP: Currents B-Sides & Remixes
What can even be said about Tame Impala at this point. When the B-Sides to acclaimed Currents were announced, you knew exactly what to expect: psychedelic rolling synths, modulating vocals, melodic tones that develop and meld over the course of a song, and of course Tame Impala’s infectiously memorable hooks. “List of People” is more of what made this album a smash success in the first place.
Artist: J. Roddy Walston & The Business
Song: “The Wanting”
Album/EP: Destroyers of the Soft Life
Bright and reflective, “The Wanting” strikes a fine balance between the high-octane and classic old-school cool kinds of rock. Stomping four-to-the-floor and no-frills guitar riffs also makes the track feel warmly familiar and perpetually optimistic – even with the lyrics don’t completely concur.
Song: “Instant Pleasures”
A shimmering, glamorous alternative rock tune that embraces 70s funk harder than the tune’s subjects embrace instant gratification. Lush tones and crooning harmonic vocals are Obliques’ tools of the trade, churning steadily alongside catchy choruses. It’s easy to see why this NYC band enjoyed a stint as an SNL after-party staple.
Artist: Sara Diamond
Song: “Three Words” (Prod. by Noah Barer & Austin Tecks)
There’s something in this tune that really holds your attention. Maybe it’s the soaring hook, or the melodic synths, or the disjointed breakdown, or simply the scorned-yet-strong vocals – one way or another, Sara’s singing struck a chord.