It has been a monumental week for new music. Kanye returned to tell us that he is “the greatest human artist of all time” but kept it modest to remind us that Jesus is King. Meanwhile Kesha came back ‘Raising Hell‘ with Big Freedia and somebody conjured up the devil by requesting a Dolly Parton and Mr. Probz collaboration. Then back on mortal Earth we’ve seen the (suspiciously not-terrible) comeback from Coldplay, and a host of exciting album releases including Rex Orange County’s heartwarming Pony to the silkiness of King Princess’ debut Cheap Queen. It has been exhausting honestly.
With all this going on, a few gems went under the radar. This week in our Best of 3 we have a track taken from Blaenavon’s hellishly good second album, a divine return from Låpsley and a dreamy new track from upcoming duo APRE. Enjoy.
Blaenavon – ‘Never Stop Stirring’
‘Never Stop Stirring’ is just one incredible track plucked from the impressive sophomore album, Everything That Makes You Happy, from the Hampshire four-piece. ETMYH is a ridiculously optimistic album born out of a difficult patch for Blaenavon. Frontman, Ben gregory, shared his experience of a breakdown on social media following the release of their debut, setting the foundations of optimism for this record. ‘Never Stop Stirring’ is a particular potent example of tackling mental health head on as Gregory recites in the chorus: “If you never stop stirring
It can’t stay still”. This theme resonates throughout the album, from the riotous single ‘Catatonic Skinbag’ to the brutally honest lyrics from the title track and even to the Castaway Wilson-like character on the cover, representing hope (at least that’s how I see it). A brave and carefully crafted album that deserves your full attention.
Låpsley – ‘My Love Was Like the Rain’
Lapsley (my keyboard doesn’t have the fancy a, and it has caused me enough grief thus far in the article) is the underappreciated songstress from York who bowled us over with her divine debut Long Way Home in 2016. Full of slick production, intimate lyrics both intertwined with bouts of enormous pop hooks and shimmery synths, the album has unsurprisingly gone onto to be added to multiple ‘chill’ playlists and can still be heard in fancy restaurants and hotel lobbies across the country. ‘My Love Was Like the Rain’ is a mature development for the young artist. A waterfall of synths cascade throughout as Lapsley sings of learning to accept the darkness and light while “embracing contradiction”. Definitely still one for the chill playlist though.
APRE – ‘Dreamworld’
From dreamy synths to a ‘Dreamworld’. APRE’s latest track is moulded perfectly to soundtrack an epic car chase scene in some American cult film. The duo seem to be targeting the car-music niche with thudding percussion and fist pumping hooks tied in with the motor themed single covers. Its got to be said though they are smashing this niche. ‘Dreamworld’ and previous single ‘5 to 5’ ooze sunset and leather jacket vibes. Josh chatted with the lads on The VLM podcast earlier this year and they have since gone on to release tune after tune. It seems like a trend that will continue, and we can’t wait for more to be honest.