Last week Jeremy Corbyn was elected leader of the labour party in what was apparently both a landslide victory for democracy and the catastrophic self-destruction of a democratic party. Having spent a good deal of time listening to arguments about the economic policy, foreign policy, and singing policy of the seemingly simultaneous anti-Christ and second coming, there is surely only one conclusion – it’s time we all calmed down and listened to some pop music. Yes? Good.
Destroyer – Dream Lover[video:https://youtu.be/k5H–l2_WZg align:center]
Canadian band Destroyer have been making music for nearly two decades. Fronted by singer/songwriter Dan Bejar, the band makes music that loosely fits around the indie-rock vein.
With no real instrumental set-up, the band’s sound varies with each album; 2005’s Notorious Lightning and Other Works is fairly simple, White Stripes-esc, and guitar orientated, whilst previous album Kaputt is an eighties-inspired collection of smooth grooves and expansive numbers.
This track, taken from the new album Poison Season, is massive.
Beginning with an assault of trumpets, guitars, and piano, the song just builds and builds, introducing more layers as the song goes on before ending with the sort of saxophone solo that I feel is desperately missing from everyday life.
Overall it’s very reminiscent of Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band and just uplifting enough to power you through someone’s in depth but unqualified perspective on electoral theory.
Eliza and the Bear – Lion’s Heart[video:https://youtu.be/RcfAGR9wIvI align:center]
Continuing with the uplifting theme, this time from a band that may not have released an album but did feature as Radio 1’s Track of the Day last week.
Eliza and the Bear channel the vibes of The Lumineers, Munford and Sons, and, rather heavily, Of Monsters and Men. Or, as my mother puts it;
‘They sound like they have beards’.
They don’t, as it happens, but there is definitely a woodsy characteristic to the sound that could, tenuously, suggest facial hair.
Like a lot of the aforementioned bands, Eliza and the Bear use big, multi-layered vocals and brass sections to recreate some of the grandeur of Arcade Fire’s earlier work. The result is a big, polaroid, sunset, Nikon advert, log cabin, pop song – the likes of which can easily act as an escape from any troubling thoughts about vacant centre grounds, public opinion, or political credibility.
Delamere – Heart[video:https://youtu.be/ezCeVs0Gs0w align:center]
Slightly less uplifting this time, but noteworthy nonetheless.
Delamere are a four piece indie-pop band from Stoke-on-Trent. Following on from their debut EP Bright Young Things – a collection of three shiny-bright songs that range from the indie dance floor to the downright moody – the band have put out a new track titled ‘Heart’.
Swaying along to a 6/8 time signature, the song gushes reverb as wave after wave of guitar and synth crash around singer James Fitchford’s vocal melody;
‘Just wait for my heart’.
What was it Tony Blair was saying about hearts recently? Oh, never mind.
Ellie Goulding – On My Mind[video:https://youtu.be/de46GBoz594 align:center]
First impressions of this song suggested a fairly bland and ultimately forgettable return for Ellie Goulding. However, as tends to be the case with repetitive pop songs, it’s gotten stuck in my head (or ‘On My Mind’ as I should probably say).
It seems strange for an artist that has seemingly never faded away that this is actually the first piece of new music, bar two film soundtracks, to be released since the reissue of her second album Halcyon Days over two years ago.
Unlike her previous two albums which have somewhat flittered around the realms of dance music, the forthcoming collection has been described as unashamedly pop – presumably in some way down to the success of Taylor Swift’s 1989.
This track definitely fits that description. Following the acoustic guitars of her earlier work, the expansive synths and ballad-y song structures have gone – replaced by a shrunk down, simplistic model containing nothing but melody and vocal hook.
As I said, it’s ridiculously catchy.
What do you think of our pick this week? Let us know in the comments below!