Secret Rivals new one, It Would Be Colder Here Without You (self released), is the best thing they’ve done so far. The
Next up is the Almost Verbose EP (February Records) by Brilliant At Breakfast. Splashdown is lounge music with gorgeous coquettish female vocals, an even more sensual Sarah Cracknell if you will. Beautiful stuff indeed. Strawberry TV is an infectiously catchy breezy bit of summer pop like The Lucksmiths used to make. Nobody Ever Died Of A Broken Heart is some delightful whimsy with a scary pay off, while If Monday’d Never Come is brisk twee pop, like the Concretes gone fey.
On the same label is the Secret Charisma EP, Complications (February Records). The title track is a bit of chirpy indie pop, with weird vocals that waver in and out. Intentional or not, it makes me a bit sea sick. I’m not entirely sure it works. Angel, Please is rickety indie, kind of like skiffle updated for the C86 set. Lord Thomas however is fantastic, some kind of ghostly folk song. It’s something that’s been plucked from the realms of folklore and resurrected through a haze of wistfulness.
The Spectrals 7th Date (Slumberland Records) is sluggish in a good way, just swaying and tinkling with a knowing cool. Oddly, Don’t Mind on the flipside is almost a continuation of the a side. It’s similar in style and attitude and has a melody that doesn’t lift its head from its slumbers.
The Wendy Darlings release the Not A Match Made In Heaven EP (Marineville Records). Zero Zero Seven is a cracking shrieked fuzzy thing, all that is best in girl led indie pop. Suffer Girl is a bit Velvets cool, with an excitable side. Sunday So Bored is shambolically and energetically great brisk pop, while Seven Years Bad Luck is a slinky shimmy, a bit like The Hot Toddies song HTML. Gorgeously understated and affecting.
The final thing this time is by Looking Glass, The First Real Target EP (self released). What do you get if you take the best bits of Midlake, Sufjan Stevens and Fleet Foxes and roll them into a lovely rustic ball? Looking Glass, that’s who. It’s an interesting EP that is obviously designed as an artefact rather than with any commercial purposes, as the tracks get better as the EP goes along. Cracking stuff.
All releases are out now.