Courtney Barnett / ‘Hopefulessness’
The Aussie’s second album proper, Tell Me How You Really Feel, finally landed on Friday and ‘Hopefulessness’ is its awesome opening salvo, cutting deep into heartbreak over swirling feedback. A spiritual sequel to debut album highlight ‘Kim’s Caravan’, the track’s spiralling riff climbs and tightens into a noisy climax and perfectly introduces the moodier undercurrent bubbling away underneath the album.
Kip Nelson / ‘Salty’
Kip Nelson’s hometown and EP title is almost enough to explain it all: he’s from Santa Barbara, CA, and it’s called Waves After Work. To write him off as just another surf-slacker though would be to ignore the smart, interlocking grooves littered across his debut - ‘Salty’ is a standout cut among many. Like Unknown Mortal Orchestra after a beach retreat, riffs float in reverb-drenched falsetto and shuffling drums. Perfect.
Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever / ‘An Air Conditioned Man’
Like a grown-up Magic Gang, Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever have been slowly cultivating an audience for their sunny, self-assured indie since signing to Sub Pop. The new single from debut album Hope Downs is a meticulously crafted breakup track, playing vocals off each other like an internal dialogue, and is infectiously laid-back.
Trust Fund / ‘Carson McCullers’
Carrying his lo-fi aesthetic into new territories, Trust Fund’s new single ‘Carson McCullers’ finds Ellis Jones’ project moving onto Americana power-pop, filtered through his distinct voice. An effervescent synth drives its chorus, built for an uplifting summer montage. This is indie-pop from both ends of the scale - as indie as it gets but pretty much as poppy as possible as well.
Sorry / ‘Showgirl’
Another neurotic bundle of coy romance, Sorry’s sordid tale is a step further into their bedsit-grunge, with Asha Lorenz’s vocals managing to charm, menace and hypnotise in the space of seconds. Messily plastered with the closest they’ve come to a sing-along chorus, there’s a lingering sense of threat beneath the scuzz and spotlights.