Single of the Month - Rennes Les Bains Clan's ‘What You Fighting For’
Releases by Deadline Shakes, How to Dress Well, Jets, Telepathe and more
Such was The List’s excitement at the joys contained in the Singles & Downloads sandbox this month that we thought we’d try a wee experiment. How about, we thought, if we could get to the end of this column without mentioning any of the crap? Then let’s start with Glasgow’s Deadline Shakes ‘Sweeten the Deal’ (Flowers in the Dustbin) ●●●●, which is really good, a winsome, mandolin-led blast of power-country of the sort Kassidy wish they were making.
It’s a big month in minimal, techy alternapop from the mighty How to Dress Well ‘& It Was U’ (Weird World) ●●●●, a slice of lithe, sexy digisoul set to a warm rap beat, and the first effort from Jets ‘Jets EP’ (Leisure System) ●●●●, the new project from Jimmy Edgar and Machinedrum. They’ve only given us one track (‘Lock Lock Key Key’), but it’s a subtle, glitching dancefloor monster in the same vein as TNGHT, HudMo’s recent collaboration with Lunice.
The Dave ‘TV On the Radio’ Sitek-produced Telepathe ‘Destroyer’ (Federal Prism) ●●●● is a power-anthem which leans towards the genre of wintry, feminine-voiced balladry, a nice segue into Poliça ‘Lay Your Cards Out’ (Memphis Industries) ●●●●, if you can imagine Everything But the Girl gone R&B, and the tender tidal wave of Daughter ‘Smother’ (4AD) ●●●●.
The experiment’s going well, although to head for a home run we’re going to tread softly past some merely quite good songs (sorry, Animal Collective and How to Swim), although The Temper Trap ‘Miracle’ (Infectious) ●●●● narrowly scrapes in for sounding like a cross between The Script and a mid-90s trance compilation by Sasha. As for Single of the Fortnight, we’d love to give it to the insufferably catchy Yeasayer ‘Reagan’s Skeleton’ (Mute) ●●●●, but Rennes Les Bains Clan ‘What You Fighting For’ (Flowers in the Dustbin) ●●●● has grabbed our attention, a sharp and incisive protest song set to a boiled-down, Specials-like kind of North African ska.