This has been getting a fair bit of airplay on BBC 6Music for the past few weeks:
This is what it says on Freestylers’ Bandcamp page:
“Successfully crossing the divide between dance and pop – there’s nothing but relentless energy and good vibes from Freestylers’ new single ‘Happiness’. Drawing inspiration from the rave classics that inspired the prolific production duo’s early sound, the track has become a much requested anthem in their regular lockdown live DJ sets. Similar to the most anthemic moments of Chase & Status & Sub Focus – plant your hands in the air, it’s about to go off!”
It really does remind me of some of those Old Skool rave classics, but it also reminds me of something else, something quite, quite different, which I was quite surprised wasn’t getting mentioned at all when Happiness was getting played, and which isn’t mentioned anywhere on their Bandcamp page, or any other of the promotional blurb I’ve read.
It can’t just be me that’s noticed that the melody line – and indeed the saxophone – bears more than a passing resemblance to this, can it?
And then I read the comments under the video on YouTube. Definitely not just me who’s noticed…
Not a new band by any stretch of the imagination this morning, but rather a new(ish) tune by a band who I’d rather lost interest in over the past few years.
This, then, is Baby, Sleep, the current single by Maxïmo Park, which I’d half-heard on 6Music at some point, but which came up in a long-overdue conversation with my old flatmate Hel the other night:
Baby, Sleep will feature on Maxïmo Park’s seventh album, Nature Always Wins, which is scheduled for release on 26th February 2021, with a UK tour and European tour (Covid-allowing, presumably – and won’t it be nice when we don’t have to write those words anymore?) slated to kick off on the same day.
I’ve been hearing this a lot in the mornings, mostly because it’s on heavy rotation on Radio 2.
No, I haven’t forsaken my love affair with 6Music, but they don’t have Popmaster, the finest pop quiz on the airwaves, and until they do I will be switching channels every weekday morning at 10:30 and trying to score more than whichever two contestants have called in that day.
Consequently, I’ve heard this song far more than I would have done elsewhere. It heralds the return of Travis, not a band I’ve ever been particularly fond of. I mean, they make inoffensive, largely acoustic records which are…well, alright, nothing more, nothing less. The kindest thing I can say about them is that they neither make me lunge at the radio to turn them up or off.
But this. This is…just like every other Travis record, if I’m honest.
Except! Except it also features the dulcet tones of one Susanna Hoffs, which just about lifts it out of mundane strummery.
With the Mercury Music Prize announcements imminent, this morning something from a 2017 nominee that I’m really enjoying at the moment.
Lifted from her current, fourth album Kitchen Sink, this is Nadine Shah and here current single Club Cougar. Here she reminds me of Peek-a-Boo era Siouxsie, which isn’t a bad reference point in my book:
More new music to get your Wednesday morning off to a bright start.
This is Tiña, who you would be forgiven for thinking were from Spain or somewhere similarly exotic from the spelling of their name, but who are actually from South London and release records on the super cool Speedy Wunderground label:
Their debut album Positive Mental Health Music is scheduled for release on 6th November, and if the rest of it is as fine as that, we’re in for a real treat.