Efterklang, Mirrors - Singles Round-Up - 23/08/2010
Rhian Daly 25/08/2010
This week's singles come to you from somewhere in between a maze of precariously stacked boxes, sweaty and tired from the serious business of moving house. Thank fuck for The Holidays then, for pumping my otherwise lifeless body with energy in the shape of their new single 'Golden Sky'. Lush, glistening vocals and flecks of Yeasayer-esque shining greatness polish this four and a bit minutes into a glorious, swirling tie-dye behemoth of an upper.
Not quite so excellent though is Hurts' 'Wonderful Life', a song that is enough to convince you life is anything but what the aloof Mancunians try and tell you it is. Whilst they probably see their attempts at narrative lyrics as the USP of the single, in reality they're just grating and downright dull. “Don't let go”? With this sapping the life out of you with every bar, it's hard not to.
Easily as awful as Hurts are Codec Shift, creators of lazy liquid house that sounds just like 80% of all dance tracks that have ever been described as “bangers”. 'Viper Room' and it's accompanying b-side 'Cyprus One' are not “bombs,” as one quote on the press release would have you believe, for that would imply at the very least that there is something notable going on here, something big and loud and vibrant. Which is most certainly not the case. More likely to clear a dancefloor than fill one, even if you were so jacked up on drugs you couldn't remember your own name you wouldn't think Codec Shift were anything more than generic and derivative.
Fortunately, Belfast's Not Squares are a bit more inventive on 'Release The Bees', a seven and a half minute bundle of twitchy electro. All pounding beats and deep, ominous vocals, it's a restless, ADHD ridden affair made all the more exciting by how it makes you want to flail all your limbs around and run for cover at the exact same time.
Equally as danceable but heaps less scary is Mirrors' 'Ways To An End', a soaring mesh of super shiny synths that shows Hurts how it should be done. Whilst it is as slick as slick can be, it's still got heart - heaps of it. It is, essentially, near perfect, even with it's constant “1-2-3-4-5-ing” which if it were coming out of Theo Hutchcraft's mouth would undoubtedly be so very annoying.
Disco might not be anyone's favourite genre these days but that doesn't seem to have stopped Fan Death from caking their new single 'Veronica's Veil' in ridiculously great disco strings and topping the whole thing off with a delightfully irresistible bassline. As ace as all this is, it still doesn't quite get the FD ladies the coveted GIITTV single of the week trophy, even if they are so breathy and cool.
No, that honour falls this week to Efterklang for producing the masterpiece that is 'Raincoats'. Alluring and just so insanely beautiful, it makes even the blood pressure-raising task of moving seem like a breeze.