There’s a couple of big albums to talk about this week on our New Music Friday roundup. Human of the moment Ariana Grande has released her latest album, while up and coming country stars Ward Thomas show us what they can do.
Head of Sass Meghan Trainor is back too, but sounding a little different to ‘All About That Bass’. Let’s take a look!
Ariana Grande – thank u, next
All hail the queen, all hail! Queen Tay Tay now has a partner in crime at the top of pop, and her name used to be the punchline in a joke referencing her surname and Starbucks. Yes of course we’re talking about Ariana Grande; what a colossal rise to the top of music she’s had over the past couple of years.
We’ve had Ed Sheeran and Adele headline Glastonbury solo, Ariana would be more than capable of doing the same. As would Taylor Swift too, to be fair. Anyway, today marks the release of Ariana’s latest album, named after her recent track taken from it. The album’s got all the elements that make up Ariana: her honest lyrics presenting her experiences, that intense, modern, late-night sound oozing in sass and just a general overall prowess of a music goddess.
Need we say more?
Ward Thomas – Restless Minds
Twin sisters Ward Thomas have reminded us all that country music isn’t just Dolly Parton singing about her working hours. They’ve brought what could be perceived as an old genre and music directly into the modern age with a whole album about social (in)security, personalities online and what goes on in people’s heads.
‘Lie Like Me’ is an exact summary of the conflicts going on with Instagram at the moment, and album opener ‘No Filter’ clearly follows a similar topic. It’s a 15-song rulebook to which we, as a population, need to adhere in order to restore social peace.
It’s also just a banging sound. This side to country is one of my personal favourite music genres and coupling it with their vocals is a wonderful mixture.
The Amazons – Mother
This track is so good it had to have a whole different article written about it, so here we can just summarise it briefly: delicious riffs.
thank u, next.
Dermot Kennedy – Lost
He’s slowly but surely making his way to the top is Dermot. He only released a long, long, long EP, long enough to be an album, recently, but he can’t stop releasing music. ‘Lost’ exposes more of his emotional music and those ‘songs to have a moment to’ moments.
Dermot’s already had a run of popular shows over in Australia and recently made his US TV debut, and he’s got a slot at Coachella later this year. It’s all looking brilliant for him and it won’t be long before he’s talked about in the same vein as Tom Walker and George Ezra.
Sadly, his upcoming UK tour has sold out completely. But hopefully more tickets will be released soon.
Lucy Rose – Solo(w)
Lucy Rose has piled on the emotional baggage in her latest track ‘Solo(w)’. Her tracks can be either a fairy tale love song appropriate for a romantic train journey through the lake district, or a thoughtful, slightly sad affair to be heard after a break up.
She shares the qualities of Freya Ridings, in that she can portray her emotion and experience into your ears in such a way that it feels like you’ve gone through those events yourself, and all of her emotions are simultaneously your emotions as a consequence.
‘Solo(w)’ continues that path, and the effect is even more profound given that the production of the song is just her voice over a piano. Go and grab the tissues.
Meghan Trainor – THE LOVE TRAIN
All about dat sass. Meghan Trainor has returned with this new EP, but her sound now also features the pop of Taylor Swift, the personality of Dua Lipa, and the font of Japanese rock outfit MAN WITH A MISSION BECAUSE THE TITLES ARE ALL IN BLOCK CAPITALS.
IT’S A GREAT EP THOUGH.
Otherkin – Tombstone
Irish rockers Otherkin are back and they’ve brought production with them. Debut album OK was a crunching, Royal Blood-esque war of guitars and drums and more guitars with a side order of extra guitars and a deep, annoyed voice topped with an extra layer of guitars.
That still remains, thankfully, but the overall sound in ‘Tombstone’ has almost turned to The Prodigy, and Luke Reilly’s vocals are so low and displeased that he sounds like a robot. That only adds to the effect of the song; you can really lash out your own anger to this track.
It’s not a heavy riff bonanza perfect for a mosh pit and losing all your energy jumping up and down, it’s more psychological than that. Think of it as a mental mosh. Your brain will be going all over the place as you scan the various frustrations and niggles in your life with the guitar giving you the chance to really get into them.
Suitably, the song is called ‘Tombstone’. You can kill off your sources of anger in your brain with this on in the background. We can’t guarantee you’ll feel relief afterwards, but you’ll definitely feel something.
Written by Oscar La-Gambina