Singles & Downloads

Be a Familiar

Be a Familiar

Time was that the onset of summer beckoned a slew of novelty singles, courtesy of cartoon pop ingénues, often replete with carefree dance moves. You know: The Vengaboys’ ‘Going to Ibiza’; Los del Rio’s ‘Macarena’; Whigfield’s ‘Saturday Night’. Ah, happy days.

No such sunny revelry this year, alas, on the evidence of this crestfallen booty bag …

The nearerst we can manage is Smoove and Turrell, who are clearly trying their level best to avoid being a Ibiza floorfilling conga inspirer by planeing down their Wigan Casino lite adventures ‘Don’t Go’/’Hammond’‘ (Jalapeno) ●●● but managing some cheery elastic grroves. Whether the latter is an unsubtle tribute to the reckless smout from Top Gear goes unconfirmed. We’d very much like to think so.

Sure, Lady Gaga looks the part on the cover of sub-Aqua laser ballad, ‘Paparazzi’ (Interscope) ●● — all Eurotrash posturing and PVC corsetry — but a croon about stalking a bloke in jeans does not a holiday classic make. Peaches’ superior electro-lament, ‘Lose You’ (XL) ●●●● has an equally dejected undercurrent – all paranoid, throbbing and lovelorn.

Ladies! It’s summertime! Less of the heartbreak!

Said plea has clearly fallen on deaf ears around Optimo’s gaffe: the latest conscripts to their esteemed imprint go by the jovial designate of Divorce. Their eponymous debut EP ●●● does, however, give cause to carouse: it’s livid with West Coast noise-rock - or, as the fervid five-piece would have it, ‘Nae Wave’. And hence a new, excellent, genre was born …

One for bolting aural pigeonholes is Biffy Clyro’s Simon Neil – rawk totem by day and dance star by night – if the latest ovation from his moonlight pursuit Marmaduke Duke is anything to go by: the pattering, electrifying love-pop of ‘Silhouettes’ (14th Floor) ●●●● is awesome.

Another dude fleeing his bygone coop is cocktail dandy Mr Hudson – ere of The Library – now aurally conjoined with Kanye West for club-land titan ‘Supernova’ (Mercury) ●●. Its melodic constellation may delineate H-I-T but all the same, a point of order: Cher’s ‘Believe’ ushered the vocoder’s apex and death-knell. Leave well alone.

Trumpets, on the other hand, are eternally welcome. Wide-open arms, then, for Be a Familiar – a joyous, Glasgow-based assorted-rock seven-piece whose Postcard guitars and boy-girl carnival render ‘You’d Make a Great Ghost’ (self-released) ●●●●● Single of the Fortnight. It’s a glorious Scottish dog day anthem. And hell, if its shimmering snares and playground fanfares aren’t ripe for a boogie routine and a Balearic remix, then I’ll eat my Fast Food Rockers picture disc.

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