The Round Up August 2019

Words: Daniel Burton 

Editors Pick

The Mysterines – Take Control 

It feels like The Mysterines have been around for a long time now but with singer Lea just 18 years old and this only their 4th single, it proves how big an impact they have made in such a short amount of time.

Their latest single Take Control seems to have been a while in the making, with writing starting when Lea was 16, finished when she was 17 and finally released at 18. But it doesn’t matter how long it took to complete because it is simply amazing and shows huge potential for the future. Her voice is so rich and powerful, it manages to creep down inside and strike you in the most vulnerable of places. 

There is a bass line that is prominent throughout and really drives the whole track forward alongside the vocals; the drums and guitar are simply there to act as a backing and safety net for when the bass and vocals aren’t loud enough. The change of sound into the chorus introduces extra ferocity which is welcome as it ramps up the adrenaline of the listener and adds to the sheer quality of the track.

Having heard this a few times live and now being able to listen to it freely, I just cannot get the melody and lyrics out of my head – “Something is changing, what it is I don’t know. My fear comes back to take control”. Rest assured, this will not be leaving my mind or playlists for a very long time!


Syncr’s Applications Pick

Natalie McCool – Someone Nue

This is a very indie-pop piece however it does include elements of electronic sounds which bleed in through the gaps at points, but more prominently during the chorus. It has a slow and chill vibe which carries on in a similar style to her previous releases, however, this time also brings a voice similar to that of Christine and the Queens whilst bearing some resemblance to similar such bands as well.

It doesn’t build up to anything big, but the chorus is confined in its elements enough that it does not require anything of the sort. There is no over-complication, just simple beats, backing synth sounds and a very gentle voice that is still powerful enough not to be faded out by the music.

The final words you are left with are “I’m sorry that the world is ending”, which do leave you on a rather sombre note and makes you reflect on the rest of the lyrics.

However, you then piece together the story of heartbreak and breakups which are connected together by more vibrant and positive sounds.

Boniface – Wake Me Back Up

Returning with their 2nd release of 2019, Boniface are really starting to make themselves known and build up a catalogue of great tunes and Wake Me Back Up is no different.

The chorus is very simple but the lyrics and sonic makeup coupled provide a similar effect to that implored by JAWS, bringing a feel-good factor that makes you want to ‘wake back up’ and get up dancing.

Again, this track it is not too complicated in its makeup but what they do, they do well and that energy they provide is definitely transferred to their listeners.

Throughout, the sound is loud, there is lots of reverb on vocals and background synth sounds, which is almost to a psychedelic level at times, but when the chorus comes in it turns into a top-class indie-pop tune.

They are yet to release a full-length EP or album, but when they do and if is of the same quality as this latest track, it is sure to be something very special indeed.


Gaffa Tape Sandy – Kill The Chord

Taken from their debut album, Family Mammal, this garage punk band have really caught my eye with their almost hyper rock sound, similar to the likes of Lady Bird, King Nun and LUCIA.

The intro gives a small hint of a fairly rocky sound which then eases off slightly into the verse but as soon as the chorus comes in, the power hits you. It really goes into a heavy rock sound, almost as if someone has slipped and pushed the gain knob all the way to 10, and it works so well.

When you sit back and listen to the intro, it strikes me that it could have been taken from any classic British rock hit and the rest of the track is of the same quality. It is so carefully constructed, with every strum of the guitar and beat of the drum timed to such perfection and it is something that I can greatly appreciate. It is this sort of production on a track that can make a huge difference and for me makes it stand out from the crowd. It may not be the catchiest song, but the skill required to master a track like this to the level it has been takes it far beyond many others out there currently, which are very standard to be kind.

After listening to this track, I have gone and playlisted all of their tracks because I have literally fallen in love with this band. I look forward to what more they have to offer in the future!


Charity Shop Pop – Crazy About Her

Unusually, I don’t have much to say about this, I think the track really speaks for itself. You only need to listen to it once for it to tell you everything you need to know about Charity Shop Pop and fall in love with the track however, since this is a review, I better say a few words.

It is a very upbeat indie-pop number with a catchy guitar riff throughout and the slightly gritty voice adds an extra slice of passion which really brings the listener in even more. There are a few subtle nuances sitting behind the main sound which give an added something and make it that little bit more special.

After this track being playlisted by Spotify, it is clear that he is doing something right and is on the right tracks to further success. 

I am simply crazy about Charity Shop Pop and so should you be!


Gen and the Degenerates – Jesus Green

The more I listen to Jesus Green, the more I learn to love it. The verse very easily sweeps into a chorus that just urges you to sing along and brings a smile to your face.

The initial sound from the verse has a very positive perception but listening deeper there is an extra guitar riff in behind that provides a slightly darker view, and becomes much clearer in the last segment of the chorus. There is a very groovy breakdown towards the end of the song that almost sounds like an entirely different song, but it is very cleverly manoeuvred back into the main track. In the vocals, you can feel the power and it just screams ‘get out of our way, we’re coming to take over’, and the bark is most certainly just as harsh as the bite because they are one the most promising up and coming bands around. They hold a swagger and a fully justified almost arrogance about themselves without being in the slightest way obnoxious, instead giving an entirely different feeling. They transfer their positive vibes to you and make you feel like you can run the world alongside them. 

I do absolutely love this and having witnessed other live performances of theirs, I can see this fitting perfectly into their set.


Nasty Cherry – Live Forever

Lyrically, this song portrays a rebellious youth going out of their way to mess up the social system but sonically it is rather the polar opposite. It is very set in stone in its sound and makeup. It has a pulsating beat that is ever present throughout, a short riff that opens the intro which returns occasionally and a few catchy words to make up the chorus.

It may sound like I’m knocking it for being boring, but it is actually quite the opposite. Nasty Cherry have gone back to the basics and kept it simple. They have created a really great number that will grip much of the music world. It could almost be seen as the soundtrack for if Spike Island was recreated for today’s mainstream music.

This would not normally be entirely my cup of tea, but this has that something different about it that I like and I really enjoy what they have released.


Dry Cleaning – Goodnight

Instantly, the sound reminds me of a slightly less raucous IDLES, but as you can imagine that is still rather crazy. However, once the ‘voice’ comes in, you realise it couldn’t be any more different, because this track is exactly that, different!

Sonically, it is like a mix of post-punk and Americana and lyrically it is just rather absurd. It has a female voice commentary telling a story which is hard to keep track of and is random at times to say the least. From what you can understand of it, it does sound like one of those stories that are probably left untold. I may be slightly naive in making that statement, but you really do have to listen very carefully to make any sense of it. When you try and zone out from the lyrics, the music does makes it sound like there should be some singing over it but that is the way this track is different, in turn making it stand out.

Overall it is well, very weird, but that is what makes it good and gives it the potential to be popular.


Calva Louise – Belicoso

I had seen Calva Louise’s name around a bit before now but I had not ventured into their music. For some reason, I pictured this sweet quiet girl fronting your standard typical indie band, but I don’t think I could have been any further from the truth.

The intro sounds very much like the opening to some old films from THX Pictures (you would definitely recognise it if you heard it) and then this beat kicks in that bumps up your adrenaline and gets you moving. In the chorus, it all goes a bit mental, Calva Louise let all hell loose and go crazy for a few seconds. Not only do they bring diversity into the sound across the track, going from dance beats into thunderous metal-rock, but they also float in and out of Spanish and English lyrics effortlessly.

This track follows on from their debut album, Rhinoceros, which in all honesty, bar 2/3 songs, sounds like an entirely different band. However, whether the sound from Belicoso or the album is what they will go forward with, either way I see a very positive future for Calva Louise and they are a band that I will follow very closely.

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