While the music industry slowly wakes up after a nearly month-long holiday break, the first new tunes for 2019 are starting to appear. Here are five worth investigating this week.
1. Wintersleep, Beneficiary
In the Land Of (Dine Alone)
Recommended if you like: More of what Wintersleep has already brought to the table
With a Canadian tour ready to go, Wintersleep’s seventh album is set for release on March 29. If you like what you hear with this track—a noir disco sort of thing deliberately set to the same tempo of ABBA’s Dancing Queen that explores themes involving the relationship with Indigenous peoples–there’s another new one out in the wild called “Surrender.” Speaking of that tour, their Hamilton gig will be at the New Vision United Church. That should sound very, very interesting.
2. Sigrid, Sucker Punch
Single (Petroleum Records)
RIYL: Lorde, Grimes, MS MR
Looking for something optimistic to take you through the dark winter months. This might do it. Sigrid is a young singer from Ålesund, Norway. You’ll recognize the style of chord progression immediately as the sort of thing plenty of artists use to bring a melody up to anthemic levels.
3. Judah & the Lion, Quarter-Life Crisis
RIYL: Mumford & Sons, Fleet Foxes, Strumbellas
You know that feeling of disillusion in your twenties when things start to get weird and complicated? This song from the beardy, banjo-and-mandolin playing Nashville group sums that up albeit in an optimistic way. Need a pep talk? Start here.
4. Dermont Kennedy, Power Over Me
Doves and Ravens EP (Mon + Pop)
RIYL: Grandson, Two Feet, Hozier
This young Dubliner—listen for the accent to slip through as he sings–has a world-weariness far beyond his years (he’s 25). If you enjoy Rag N’ Bone Man’s Human, you’ll pick up on the same sort of vibe with this track. Someone called this “woodsy romantic folk-pop.” That sounds about right.
5. Broken Bells, Shelter
Single (30th Century Records)
RIYL: Anything Danger Mouse touches
I’ve long been a fan of Brian Burton (otherwise known as Danger Mouse) and his production work. Then there’s James Mercer, the lead vocalist, and guitarist for The Shins. They’ve been working together as Broken Bells as often as their schedules permit since 2009—which, to be honest, hasn’t been that often. It’s been nine years since the debut album, eight since a follow-up EP, and another five since the second album. Let’s hope this song leads to something more.
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