"Gigantic" is from inspirational and now legendary Frank Black- fronted '90s alt. rockers Pixies' second album, 1988's brilliant "Surfer Rosa." Pixies were always like rough diamonds- They did aggression and spontaneity fantastically well, but they ever kept in touch with that glistening sense of melody and ear for a great tune that they always had. "Gigantic" follows the structure of most of the band's songs; Steely, plodding bass lines, slacker-ish and overcharged guitars and nonsensical lyrics. Sung primarily by bassist Kim Deal, as well as having all the aspects of a classic Pixies song, it also contained a sense of high-flying melody that gets released on the chorus in soaring fashion. It's one of the most brilliant examples of Pixies matching their ethos perfectly.
Girls- Honey Bunny
LA duo Girls have been a young pinpoint for slacker indie for the last couple of years now. Their 2009 debut "Album" was a hugely brilliant affair of great melodies and Christopher Owens' awe-inspiring song writing talent. Their third album "Son, Father and the Holy Ghost" is out next week, and this new song from it is a wonderful and hugely catchy little pop- rock nugget, the kind the band have always been dab-hands at. It sounds more pristine and much more clear- cut than any of their previous work, and whereas before their charm lay in fuzz, it now seems it lies in the ability to write bopping, hugely melodic and brilliantly crafted pop songs. This track sees the band lose none of their ethos, as Owens moans on the chorus "They don't like my bony body/ They don't like my dirty hair." It's still undeniably Girls, but now more refined, and probably one of the best songs they've ever written.
Azari & III- Manic
A new wave of late '80s/ early '90s -esque house music is hardly what the music world in general needs right now. However, in the grimy depths of dance music however, unless you're one to dig deep and dark into the horrifying throes of grimy bass lines and penetrating beats, there's very little to marvel at. Canadian DJ crew Azari &III seem to have found a way to counter this with their brilliant self-titled debut album. It's probably the campest thing you'll hear all year, but with it's pounding and deliciously funky beats and dark lyrical warnings against AIDS and, well, society in general, you'll struggle to find a more relevant dance music album in 2011. The track above, "Manic" is the foursome at the height of their funky, sexy yet dark spur that could bring a new lease of life to dance music.
Wild Beasts- End Comes To Soon
The closing track to Wild Beasts phenomenal third album "Smother" could hardly be more fitting an ending. It's a pensive, peaceful and quietly beautiful 7 minute masterpiece, unlike anything the band had produced before. It rolls deep in the realms of organic instrumentation, and it's spectral and heavy air of retirement makes it one of the most moving songs the band have ever produced. It's a perfect song for this time of year because as things come to a close, you're left waiting on the edge of a cliff, as though something huge and epic is about to happen. You'd be hard- pressed to find a song better- suited to that situation than "End Comes To Soon."