February 5, 2018
Taken from this week’s Future Pop mailer. Click here to subscribe. All my Songs of the Week are featured on my Top of the Poptastic playlist, along with the rest of my faves from the year so far.
I wasn’t totally convinced by Pale Waves when I wrote about them a few weeks ago, but it only took one listen to their new single The Tide to win me over. If they are the female-fronted version of The 1975, then this is their The Sound. The jolly tune even reminds me of Alphabeat at their indie-pop peak. It was originally shared on Soundcloud as a demo back in 2015, and re-emerged a few days ago as the first release since Pale Waves came fifth in the BBC Sound of 2018 poll. The Tide had to fight off some strong contenders for the title of Song of the Week. Last week’s New Music Friday was one of the best yet, with not just the usual faves like Churches and Tove Styrke, but many little-known artists coming up with poptastic treats. You can hear my highlights at the top of my Top of the Poptastic 2018 playlist.
January 15, 2018
Taken from this week’s Future Pop mailer. Click here to subscribe.
With today’s cool kids listening to grime, alt-R&B and whatever’s the latest trend in electronic music, not many indie acts have managed to win a young fanbase in the past few years. However, independent label Dirty Hit have done it twice, with The 1975 and Wolf Alice. The indie music scene seems to be pinning their hopes on their labelmates Pale Waves to follow in their footsteps. They were the only British band to make the BBC Sound of 2018 list, and appear on the cover of both DIY and Dork’s Class of 2018 issues. The group started out as a girl duo, before adding two boys to make up the numbers. I appreciate the ’80s teen goth look and broad Mancunian accents, and some of their tracks are quite catchy, but I feel musically they have been influenced a little too much by The 1975, who they’ve toured and collaborated with in various ways. Their biggest single Television Romance just sounds like a 1975 song with a female vocal. Personally I’d like to hear their ’80s references coming through more directly, rather than filtered via current sounds. However, Dirty Hit have shown they can make indie music relevant to a post-subcultural generation, so let’s see if they can do it again.