We’re not saying there’s a specific theme going on post-Halloween, but Creeper announced their new single following a theatrical on-stage decapitation of frontman Will Gould, while Brockhampton literally came back from the dead to give us a new track. There’s also another from Gorillaz’ forthcoming album ‘Cracker Island’; Years & Years took on a ‘90s classic and Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes offer a new track alongside news of a handful of tiny shows.
There’s also the first track from a new project constructed and produced by comedian-off-the-telly, James Acaster. No, really.
To keep your senses updated with all the best new music, see Essential New Tracks below. For words on the cream of the crop, read on…
Brockhampton - Big Pussy
“The Family is most definitely our most unique album and also the best record we’ve ever made,” Brockhampton’s Kevin Abstract declared on Twitter last week, and first single ‘Big Pussy’ seems to make good on that promise. Starting with an impactful “fuck you” and a short jazz sample, before exploding into frenetic beat that shape shifts into a chiller groove, ‘Big Pussy’ proves that the boyband aren’t done with making a statement. But, come on, did you ever expect them to bow out quietly? (Elly Watson)
Creeper - Ghost Brigade
A full throttle return to the more punked up side of Creeper’s repertoire, ‘Ghost Brigade’ marks another new beginning for the Southampton six-piece. Following what can only be described as a dramatic turn of events at this recent London Roundhouse show, their latest release introduces the band’s newest era, and - with its chorus’ soaring refrain of “To say goodbye to endless nights” - doubles another deliciously anthemic slice of dark pop-punk. (Sarah Jamieson)
Gorillaz – Baby Queen
This third single from Gorillaz’ eighth album, ‘Cracker Island’ is apparently about real-life royalty: a Thai princess once attended a Blur show in the ‘90s while sat on a throne next to the mixing desk. Comfort, and the best sound: turns out you need to be born into it. One of the outfit’s more subdued numbers, it’s retro synth sounds over a mid-paced beat, creating an expanse into which Damon’s laid-back vocals sit perfectly. That it’s a single is somewhat surprising – until learning it was included in the soundtrack to FIFA ’23 back in September. (Bella Martin)
Years & Years – 100% Pure Love
Years & Years’ take on Crystal Waters’ mammoth ’90s hit is pure liberating dance fever, with frontman Olly Alexander’s vocals stamping that signature Years & Years tone upon the house-heavy track. It’s an invite to the dancefloor, encouraging you to abandon your inhibitions and lose yourself to the slick, high-energy beats. It’s a captivating homage to the original, tearing up the floor and revelling in full, vibrant dance-pop. (Neive McCarthy)
Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes – Parasite
The second new single from Hertfordshire’s gobbiest punk n’ rollers since the release of fourth album ‘Sticky’ last year witnesses Frank Carter at his most wry. Opening with a buzzing guitar salvo and Demigorgon-like growl, this frenetic track sees him take aim at a Freud and Jung-quoting, good-for-nothing ‘softboi’ who’s dull, arrogant and probably has an STI or two. It’s delightfully petty fun, and perfectly primed to get 500 sweaty punters going feral when the duo take over Camden’s Underworld for a three-night residency next month. (Emma Wilkes)
Temps – no, no
If told James Acaster developed a new hobby during lockdown and asked to guess it, precisely nobody would have said banana bread. Still, few more would’ve got the real answer: the comedian formed a band. Or, strictly speaking, a shifting, 40-strong collective of musicians, with some names as familiar as his own, in what seems like an attempt to place him as Kettering’s answer to Damon Albarn. Temps’ debut track ‘no,no’ features the likes of Shamir, NNAMDÏ, Xenia Rubinos and jazz drummer Seb Rochford. That quite literally sets the pace for the song, understated and flighty – but also quietly hypnotic: there’s an earworm in there, deep down. (Bella Martin)
Yo La Tengo - Fallout
Accompanying the announcement of a 17th studio album, the latest from the New York art-rock stalwarts is vintage Yo La Tengo. Driven by a steady, planing groove, like Sonic Youth on codeine, ‘Fallout’ bubbles with muted intensity and emotional tenderness. Add a distinctive, pillow-talking vocal that aches with confession - “It makes me sick, what’s in my mind / It’s so hard to react in time” - and guitar lines that could fluff up the clouds, and you have a refreshed formulation of a timeless sound. ‘Fallout’ is another pristine entry into an already glittering catalogue. (Elvis Thirlwell)
Gaz Coombes - Don’t Say It’s Over
Though best known for his more antsy, antagonistic Supergrass wares, Gaz Coombes has crafted - both within the band and his decade-long solo career - a strong line in more introspective melancholy over the years, too. ‘Don’t Say It’s Over’ is a fine example of when he gets it very right. Layered and rich, with haunting, Radiohead-like falsetto moments and a grandly dramatic sweep, it’s grown up music but with enough creativity (and an excellent guitar solo) to keep the singer still sounding fresh. (Lisa Wright)
Upsahl - Into My Body
A rallying call to try and ditch the internal demons and live in the moment, ‘Into My Body’ might have been written with mental health in mind but it cleverly doubles up as an infectiously sassy ode to the power of feeling yourself. Pulsing club-pop beats nod to Charli XCX or if Cobrah was given a PG13 edit, while any pre-party getting ready montage would only be enhanced by whacking the track’s empowering self-love lyrics on loud. (Lisa Wright)
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