Friday, April 11, 2014

Katy Perry's birthday suit and seven other songs you may have missed

This week's groundbreaking installment of songs-you-may-have-missed contains several songs you may have missed. It's a revolution.

1) Katy Perry - Birthday (lyric video)
La Perry's lyric videos have a bigger budget than most artists get for their actual promos. And what does Katy do with all that extra cash? Spends it on cake. Amazing.

2) Calvin Harris - Summer
Calvin Harris has also been handed a sizeable promo budget, but he's spent it all on bikini girls and sports cars. Watch out, Harris, or you'll turn into Jamiroquai.

3) Jamie xx - Sleep Sound
Now, this is more like it: A dance video, starring 13 members of the Manchester Deaf Centre, set to a hypnotic new song by Jamie xx.

Director Sofia Mattioli says the video was inspired by a train journey: "I was listening to music, getting deep into it, and this girl started staring at me. After a while I took my headphones off and she came up to me, started signing and then wrote me a note to say that she was deaf but could almost feel the music by my movement."

Captivating and mesmerising.

4) Say Lou Lou - Everything We Touch (Yannis Foals mix)
Sexy, euphoric, Swedish pop. There's something special about Say Lou Lou and Yannis Philippakis from "intellectual" rock band Foals clearly agrees.

He's run his feather duster all over their new single Everything We Touch and given it a sparkling, heavenly sheen. Damned-near perfect.

5) Tove Lo - Stay High (Hippie Sabotage remix)
I prefer the original version of Tove Lo's Habits but Radio One have playlisted this trancey remix for complicated music 'biz' reasons we'll never fully understand. On the downside, the remix has bumped the superior Love Ballad off her Truth Serum EP (otherwise it wouldn't be chart eligible in the UK). On the plus side, Tove is now number seven in the iTunes chart.

A remix video has been hastily cobbled together and looks like this.

NB - my interview with Tove went up on the BBC News site today. You can read it here.

6) Foxes - Holding On To Heaven
Foxes is gradually turning into a genuine pop star. Photogenic, witty, fond of tempo changes, with a constant hint of melancholy in her voice.

Holding On To Heaven follows up the top 10 hits Youth and Let Go For Tonight (although it's also been a free download in the past which is very confusing). Taken from her forthcoming album Glorious, it's power ballad o'clock.

7) Nightbox - Burning
"Hi Mark, I'm Andrew Keyes, the bassist in Nightbox," said an email in my inbox earlier this week. "I'd appreciate if you'd lend me your ears for a moment to check out my band's upcoming release."

After a complex and painful surgical procedure, I did lend Andrew my ears and, contrary to expectations the "upcoming release" was 100% not shit.

Recorded in the band's living room ("we've got wooden floors", says Andrew, "far easier to clean up") but given the once over by MSTRKRFT and Sebastien Grainger of DFA 1979, their EP is propulsive, rhythmic indiepop.

The EP's out on 22 April, with Burning as the lead track - but you can check out their other material on Soundcloud.

8) Klaxons - There Is No Other Time
A return to form if ever there was one.

That's your lot. There's also a Kylie lyric video doing the rounds, but I couldn't think of anything to say about it.

See you again on Monday when apparently there'll be a new Lana Del Rey single to discuss. Exciting.

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