Sound Board: The Week’s Best Tracks
Our picks for the best tracks out there for the week of February 2–6, 2015. Headphone-tested, FLOOD-approved.
On Monday, Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow and predicted six more weeks of winter for the US, but that’s just fine because there’s been an abundant amount of standout music released this week including moving musical tributes (Matthew E. White), powerful live performances (Seinabo Sey), and newly released songs from some highly anticipated albums (Young Fathers, Elvis Perkins, Other Lives, Dick Diver)
Check them all out below.
With the actor’s last work still not completely out, it may be hard to believe that it’s been a whole year since Philip Seymour Hoffman tragically died at the age of 46. To mark that sad anniversary, Matthew E. White has shared his second Fresh Blood track, “Tranquility,” which was written as a tribute to the lost actor. The track seems simple at first, a ballad about a lost friend, but the intricate layers of vocals, strings, keys, and fuzzed-out guitar come together beautifully to honor such a complex human being.
Seinabo Sey, “Younger”
This week, Swedish singer-songwriter Seinabo Sey brought her warm voice and innovative beats to Conan for her US television debut. Her performance of “Younger,” an inspiring and sweeping electro-pop track about following your dreams even if it means taking a huge risk, was powerful and graceful. Her playfulness and immense talent proves that Sey is going to be a force to reckon with in 2015.
Young Fathers, “Rain Or Shine”
The first single from Young Fathers upcoming record White Men Are Black Men Too starts off in a bizarro carnival fun house. And only gets weirder from there. Follow the circus organ and driving, industrial beat down the rabbit hole, and you’ll get a glimpse of the inner psyche of the Mercury Music Prize–winning Scottish art-rap trio. Once you see it, it’s hard not to dive right in.
Elvis Perkins, “I Came For Fire”
Distinctly soft, eerie folk qualities make Elvis Perkins‘ newest single “I Came for Fire” sound like it came from another time. The delicate harmonies and start-stop percussion draw listeners wearily into a dreamlike state, like some wanderer on the outskirts of town. It’s a testament to Perkins’ skill at capturing a precise mood, and is a perfect taste of his upcoming album, I Aubade.
The first track from the record, “Reconfiguration,” is an immediate and welcome return to the Other Lives‘ familiar, warm and winsome atmospheric melodies. Striking and full of dynamic spirit with the combination of Tabish’s stirring, abstracted vocals, and the myriad multi-instrumentalism of Jonothan Mooney and Josh Onstott, the song is a promising first listen of an instant highly anticipated forthcoming album.
Along with the first single, “Waste The Alphabet,” “Tearing The Posters Down” finds Dick Diver embracing some Cheap Trick and Big Star vibes into their sound, while at the same time still holding down the jangly-goodness that got them started in the first place. Melbourne, Florida, is out March 10 via Trouble In Mind.