This week’s new single releases (21st July 2013) – Part 1

Part one of my round up of the new singles available for digital download this week.

AlunaGeorge – ‘You Know You Like It / Bad Idea’
It does feel like a real let down when you get this sort of musical sequel coming on the coat-tails of ‘Your Drums, Your Love’ and the excellent ‘Attracting Flies’. Recorded over an awkward sounding backing track that sounds like someone having a mental breakdown over a synthesizer, the chorus has that usual AlunaGeorge appeal but it’s not enough to make you forget about the music, which is really uncomfortable to listen to. Lacking in structure and appeal, this feels like a different artist to the one that delivered ‘Attracting Flies’ to us. (3/10)
Watch the video.

Andy Burrows – ‘Keep On Moving On’
Having had plenty of success with Razorlight, We Are Scientists and, of course, last year’s belated Snowman sequel, Burrows continues with his solo career. ‘Keep On Moving On’ has the flashes of genius we expect from the singer-songwriter but it’s certainly not his strongest work. Lacking any strong foundations and a chorus that doesn’t feel tired, even for a sub-three minute hit, it’s a gentle, summery song, but one that doesn’t stop you from moving on to something more exciting. (5/10)
Watch the video.

Charlie Brown feat. Misha B – ‘Floodgates Part 2’
Having shown promise with some of his earlier hits, ‘Floodgates Part 2’ is a rambling, messy track with some disjointed duet vocals from Misha B. Running out of steam well before its three minute twenty end, there’s far too much going on in the background which detracts from the touching, but clichéd, lyrics, which end up, inappropriately, drowning. A lack of cohesion and structure makes listening to this a struggle. (3/10)
Watch the video. 

Counterparts – ‘Witness’
The third single from Canadian hardcore band Counterparts, ‘Witness’ is another one of those songs that will please the fans of the band and of the genre, but in the cold light of day it’s just one man screaming unlistenable lyrics over the rest of the band trying to make as much noise as possible. That might make me sound old, or out of touch, but this has been done so much better by other bands, without descending into the same old tropes. I have no doubt the band are musically talented to produce this, but it’s not my sort of thing. (1/10)
Watch the video. 

Diana Vickers – ‘Cinderella’
A runner-up from X Factor many moons ago, Vickers is back with the lead single off her upcoming second album ‘Music To Make Boys Cry’. Coming off the back of ‘Once’ and ‘My Wicked Heart’, two cracking pop songs, does ‘Cinderella’ prove itself a fairy tale? Sadly, though I’d hope to see it transforming into something awesome at the strike of the clock, ‘Cinderella’ lacks the spark that she brought with her debut tracks, leaving us with this serviceable and middle of the road pop track that fails to really do anything exciting with its four minutes in our company, though the chorus does prove to be a little bit of a grower. Vickers has a great voice but needs better material than this. (4/10)
Watch the video. 

Foals – ‘Bad Habit’ (EP)
With a couple of remixes of the title track fleshing out the EP, ‘Bad Habit’ is the best track I’ve reviewed so far this week, but even then it’s not a song that’s going to set the world alight. Musically intriguing with a strong, weaving vocal track, it’s an involving composition that builds well to its chorus and towards its conclusion, though four minutes is pushing it to keep your interest with no peaks or troughs discernible from a monotone-esque structure. An average track excelling in a disappointing week so far. (5.5/10)
Watch the video.

Hurts – ‘Somebody To Die For’
Hurts can usually be relied on to shake things up a little, especially with the quality of their second album singles. ‘Somebody To Die For’, though not capturing the magic of ‘Miracle’ that brought them back this year so successfully, has more drama in its four minutes than everything I’ve heard so far put together. The ballad, with its swelling strings, and simple lyrics, won’t win any awards but the synth backing and the strong vocals carry it well. (6.5/10)
Watch the video. 

Jay-Z feat. Justin Timberlake – ‘Holy Grail’
The first ninety seconds of the lead single from Jay-Z’s song are great with Timberlake at his smooth-voiced finest, even if the material is not quite up to ‘Mirrors’ or his big period from a few years ago. Sadly, once Jay-Z begins spitting his rhymes, the song descends into a smattering of random phrases and a frankly pointless mini-sample from Nirvana’s ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’. Though Timberlake comes out of this with his head held high, his contribution would have worked better next to a more accomplished set of rap verses, something Jay-Z fails to deliver here and has for a while. If the Holy Grail is a piece of music, then this is certainly not it. (3.5/10)
Watch the video. 

Kings of Leon – ‘Supersoaker’
The first cut from their impending Mechanical Bull album ‘Supersoaker’ sounds like typical KOL and has plenty of kick to it, but it’s no ‘Sex On Fire’ or ‘Use Somebody’. Lacking in a killer chorus or anything that really stands out above the throbbing guitars, outside of the bridge, it should be a fan pleaser but I doubt it’ll have the commercial success that they enjoyed a few years ago. (4/10)
Watch the video.

Post Author: Philip Lickley