The Round-Up (12/11/21)

Track of the Week: Nilüfer Yanya – Stabilise

Nilüfer Yanya’s return is a jolt of electricity, a piece of paper set alight, over before it’s even started. Her vocal draws you in, quiet and hushed tones make you lean forwards, as if that’ll help you decode it all. She’s got us in the palm of her hands.

Also new this week…

Empath – Diamond Eyelids
A combination of Snail Mail’s welcoming vocal and Hinds’ chaotic spontaneity, Empath are a great new band releasing great new music. ‘Diamond Eyelids’ is just another example.

Jenny Lewis – Puppy and a Truck
Ahh, Jenny. My muse. Always good to hear from you. This time around, she’s leaning hard into some Nashville vibes, fully equipped with f-bombs and hypoallergenic dogs. And Jenny’s about the only singer who can sing about a truck without it sounding like a cringey, pop country song. Thank fuck.

fanclubwallet – That I Won’t Do
Lo-fi vocals make you stop a listen. Whirring drone sounds keep you focused throughout. An acoustic ending makes leaves you pondering, wondering what you missed out on and instantly pressing replay.

Mitski – The Only Heartbreaker
Mitski has us all wrapper around her little finger with this Drive-esque song that’s propelled by menacing synth sounds.

Gregor Barnett – Don’t Go Throwing Roses In My Grave
There seems to be a recurring trend in Americana-tinged punk music where the singer inevitably ends up making a solo record that sounds a hell of a lot like the band from whence he came if they traded their electrics for acoustics and added some harmonica. (See also: Brian Fallon) I’m not complaining – as a die hard Menzingers fan, I loved this song before I even heard it.

Gabriels – Bloodline
The introductory string section gives this one a grand feel, a proper grand feel. There’s a downtempo feel to it, though, like the lull at the end of one of Gatsby’s great parties. But then the party gets going again, and one of the best new voices around transports you into the past and future simultaneously.

Let’s Eat Grandma – Two Ribbons
This is the most intimate Let’s Eat Grandma have ever been. It’s a hopeful song about desire, passion and want – the want to make things work, the want to make things better. It’s great to have them back.

The Lathums – Krampus
In their typical style of upbeat, jangly indie rock, The Lathums contrast the upbeat, fast-paced melodies with stories full of humbug and despair as they launch their anti-Christmas single.

Why Bonnie – Galveston
Listening to this made me feel safe. Wasn’t in any danger or owt, but still, I felt safe. It’s a comfort blanket, a hot chocolate, a chippy tea. Beautiful stuff.

Reese Fulmer – It’s All a Dream
Major Iron & Wine vibes on this one. At 6 minutes long, this ain’t your typical folk song, but it never ceases to stay interesting. A variety of instruments take their time gently piling atop each other, crafting a gorgeous slice of americana from this up-and-coming songwriter.

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