Sunday, December 25, 2016

Singles of the year: 61-70


Happy Christmas! And welcome back to in love with these times in spite of these times, the indie-pop fanzine that prefers One Republic to the Vamps. 1 LOVE.

61. Peru “All The Way Home” (Archdeacon of Pop)

Peru have improved a lot in 20+ years, which shouldn’t be surprising but trust me, many a combo has managed to go backwards over the same period. This is a textured, grown up slice of indie-pop (maybe a bit Hillfields or ArtGruppe) that suddenly launches off towards the stratosphere when a host of spiralling guitars kick in near the end.

62. Tangible Excitement! “Muddled Whine” (Emotional Response / FreakScene)

Well. One feels this song from the long-distance intercontinental supergroup couldn’t have been more catchy if it had been fomented by earnest musicologist boffins in a secret government laboratory (maybe a bit like the one that 808 State used to help MC Tunes split the atom). The fact that "Muddled Whine" (not muddled, not a whine) is even more addictive than the Tiger Trap cover that TE! dig out on the 7” flip surely validates this hypothesis beyond reasonable scientific doubt.

63. Real Numbers “Frank Infatuation” (Slumberland)

Joyfully clattering Frank (the label) style pop with sweet hook, apparently an ode of sorts to the Television Personalities and a rumoured beef of sorts with John Peel, although as we struggle to catch all the lyrics (which was never a problem with the TVPs) we can’t fully vouch for that.

64. Tomohiko Sagae “Abducted” (HueHelix)

Dear God. Can this be the same label that brought us the rare and fluttering beauty of Ryuji Takeuchi’s “Possibility”? It is, though. On his “Abducted” EP, Tomohiko Sagae decides that techno is for wimps, goes all-out industrial, and throws screes and walls of feedback everywhere, before adding maniacal drums. This is metal machine music gone mad. Hurrah for that.

65. Slayer “You Against You” (Nuclear Blast)

After last year’s ruefully terrible single, this was a pretty great one, hopefully by way of apology. Contains maybe the best crop of beautifully OTT guitar solos (there are three of them, together making up half of the song length) since the feverish fretboard frissons of Deicide’s “Homage for Satan” a good 10 years ago.

66. Vincenn “2L” (Minimal Techno Records)

Label with Ronseal name delivers buzzing French tech-yes from Caen's Vincenn that sounds a bit like a fly buzzing around your head, which is really irritating when a fly does it, but somehow sounds ace when it’s Vincenn doing it. The download from Beatport is corrupted too, meaning that about 90 seconds of this suddenly derail into crazed noise-glitch, like Kid606 at circa 9,000 rpm. Which, obviously, serves to improve “2L” even further.

67. DJ Supreme ft. Son Of Noise "R.I.P." (BackBone Records)

Yes, it’s Hijack v Hardnoise redux as two absolute 24-carat UKHH legends return for this satisfyingly retro showtune. There’s also a dutty remix helmed by extra DJs and heavyweight contemporary MCs including faves of this blog like Durrty Goodz and Ramson Badbonez.

68. Strange Passage “Shine And Scatter” (self-released cassette)

There are five tunes here, but it’s just one of them - the seriously pretty, yet totally toetapping, title track - that destroys everything else by some considerable distance as these young Americans get all kind of helter-skelter Felt(er) in your face, churning out splendid pop hooks with a hint of morningdew glaze.

69. Fliptrix ft Jazz-T “Patterns Of Escapism” (High Focus)

Tophole platter from Brighton to London √©migr√© Fliptrix, anchored at the business end by Jazz-T’s typically assured production, about the collective human need to shut out the real world, whether through drink, drugs or other dependencies. Fliptrix is rapidly becoming one of the best UK MCs on the circuit, and both Flip’s fire and Jazz’s soulful samples remind us muchly of those excellent Skinnyman singles, around the time the Finsbury Park rhymer was blowing up.

70. DJ Cable featuring GHSTLY XXVII “Ride To This” (Triangulum)

Not 100% sure why west London MC Ghostly has become GHSTLY XXVII here – presumably it’s a result of the usual copyright skirmish – but it does mean that he no longer shares his name with a Bracken track, which I’m sure he regrets. And we know for a fact that he is some years away from being 27. Happily, his flows on this one -as we may come back to at a later date, it wasn’t his first collabo with DJ Cable in the last 12 months - are as irrepressibly bright as ever.

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