We are still catching up with reviews during this COVID-19 downtime. So here is our second 2020 singles round-up. These five tracks feature another eclectic mix of bands from as far afield as Newcastle, Brighton, Mexico, and Los Angeles. All of these acts are new to With Just A Hint Of Mayhem too. Enjoy!
Swine Tax – Browsing
“Browsing” – Swine Tax
21st Century punk at its best, a song full of open wound anger and vitriol. If the Sex Pistols came into being a couple of years ago they might have sounded like this. Their lyrics are sharp and their passion is strong, these boys from Newcastle could go the distance!
“Hsieh Su-Wei” – Mercvrial
A hypnotic dream gaze track from Mexico. It is about the Taiwanese tennis player Hsieh Su-Wei who apparently has a wonderfully unorthodox but successful style of play. It is quite a chilled song that would sit neatly among the early R.E.M. canon of tunes. This is going on my summer playlist!
“More Than I Can Give” – Sapien Trace
Another exciting band from Newcastle. With this single Sapien Trace pay homage to some of the best electro-synth, there has ever been. Imagine the Prodigy, 80s Human League and maybe Spandau Ballet’s Tony Hadley on vocal duties. All underpinned by an almost Italian House piano motif. This is an intriguingly great track that leaves me wanting more of Sapien Trace.
“Farewell Fareworse” – Something Leather
An eerie heavy psych workout from Brighton band Something Leather. The keyboards, in fact, the whole instrumentation, could soundtrack a modern take on a Hammer Horror film. The vocals are exceptionally good and sound at times like Cerys Matthews on psychedelic steroids. After this one song, I am a fan!
“Hate To Love” – Stonestreet
If you like modern R & B you will love this soulful, chilled tune from Stonestreet. Is it a love song? Maybe, but probably in the context of the occasional sparkle in a toxic relationship. The song is dedicated to Stonestreeet’s childhood friend Ann Emory who is no longer with as she struggled so hard with growing up queer in an unaccepting environment. It saddens me that the world still has more than its fair share of bigots. But I bloody love this tune and I am sure that Ann Emory would have been proud of Stonestreet’s stand for her!
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