Month In Review: April 2014
We're now one third of the way into 2014 and its new music is proving to be head and shoulders stronger than 2013.
April has probably been the patchiest month of the year so far. We've had strong contenders for single of the month and all from relative newcomers, not so much competition for album of the month and newcomers were fairly thin on the ground too. That aside, we've developed a renewed vigour for the site and found time for some interviews and features. But enough of that, let's get to it..
Single Of The MonthTo be honest, we could have given single of the month to any of the tracks we certified this month, but seeing as though we've had a fairly smooth and subtle start to the year, we've ruled one track out - tough going isn't it. That left us with two tracks in mind, one from a particularly hyped band that's technically had two tracks this month and hype aside, they've both been pretty outrageous to say the least. The other comes from a way-way-way... way too under-rated band. So naturally, the underdog wins. This months 'single of the month' comes from Rob Da Bank's Sunday Best label's latest signees, Wild Smiles.
- Honourable mentions go to Blessa for "Unfurl" and Wolf Alice for, well, both "Moaning Lisa Smile" and "Storms".
Album Of The MonthAlbum of the Month wasn't so hard for April; it's between two acts, like last month's battle between Perfect Pussy and Future Islands or Captured Tracks vs 4AD, if you will. Surprisingly, April is home of the grudge match, as another CT act took on a 4AD musician, bloody brilliant! Mac DeMarco's Salad Days came out bang on April 1st and doesn't quite feel like an April release to be totally honest, but either way it-was-immense...
In 4AD's corner was Tremors the debut LP from SOHN, which like Future Islands Singles brought fresh sounds and ideas to the table - a relatively stand alone album that spoke for itself. It wasn't quite enough to power through Maccy's charm and charisma though, as Salad Days probably shut a lot of critics up that may have questioned whether-or-not he was just a one trick pony. We'll no doubt hear DeMarco's sound evolve more on his next release, but for now we've got one hell of a release at our disposal. Stand out track "Chamber of Reflection" is available for you listening pleasure below.
Other Notable HappeningsApril was the month of One For The People, yes that's right - us. We pulled our frail blogger fingers out and made time for a stunning Blessa interview and launched a new LP promoting feature for our most anticipated spring LPs. Expect Summer, Autumn and Winter too. On top of those beauties, April was pretty good for remixes too. Eyedress did a quality remix of last month's best track, All We Are's "Feel Safe" and Kindness tried his talented hands at Blood Orange's "Uncle ACE".
We also had some of our previous best newcomers return with excellent EPs. Those newcomers were Northern based Tropic of Youth and Goodbye Channel. Oh and we can't forget that Ben Khan finally dropped his debut EP, 1992.
Tom Vek returned...
In terms of newcomers, April's been less fruitful than the previous three months of the year, but there's still been a few bright young sparks to pricks our ears - namely, YOUTHCULT, Teen Brains and Shunkan. Sweden's YOUTHCULT play the mystery card with their take on the highly strung styling of Wu Lyf and Money. Norfolk's Teen Brains are going a way to keep surf-rock vibes on the map and we've been completely bowled over by Shunkan's mix of "flamboyant Karen O vocals, Foals like poly-rhythms, floating Wild Beast-ian vibes and My Bloody Valentine's droning reverb."
Listen: April Playlist
You can find all the best songs from April in our playlist below.