Bethany Cosentino – ‘It’s Fine‘
After 14 years as one-half of beach-rock heroes Best Coast, Bethany Cosentino has finally backed herself to go it alone, and she’s feeling kinda reflective. “I am evolved/you’ve stayed the same” she states in the bridges, before giving herself over to choral catharsis: “and it’s fine”. With a breezy, road trip energy and country twang, it’s one to crank loud with your best girlies in the back, feeling the thrill of letting go.
Le Serrafim – ‘Unforgiven‘
With their message of defiance and fearlessness literally baked into the anagram of their name, rookie group Le Serrafim are bringing a certain spice to K-Pop, a patent desire to do things their way. Featuring the one and only Nile Rogers on that spiky guitar line, it’s another ace in the hole, a villain-era anthem that makes sparky use of unusual western motifs.
Gretel Hänlyn – ‘King Of Nothing‘
In the giddy game of both love and friendship, everyone is bound to meet the odd wrong’un from time to time, a person who talks the talk without walking it. Enter West London’s Gretel Hänlyn, thoroughly fed up with all the “WhatsApp wankers” and “serial vapists” who only show their feminism through an industrial mummy complex. Her wicked way with words keeps up with the pace of her motorcycle indie-rock, ready to don your doc martens and unleash hell to down your local alternative disco.
Waterbaby – ‘911‘
The intoxicating meeting point of Beabadoobee, SZA and Outkast, Stockholm-based Sub-Pop signee Waterbaby has made an impressive introduction as an artist of subtle flourishes, capturing the quiet intensity of love and heartbreak through lead single ‘Airforce Blue’, and now, ‘911’. As the “whee-oo-whee-oo” of the ambulance escorts her bloody heart away, we are treated to lush strings and understated vocal, the quiet romance of giving even negative feelings your all: “One day we gon’ die / we should have some fun.”
Blusher – ‘Backbone‘
Channelling the spirit of MUNA with a heavier injection of synths, Melbourne’s Blusher head to the dancefloor on ‘Backbone’, shaking off a breakup through the support of the kind of loyal friends who are ready to “punch him in the chest / If you ever met”. If you’re in need of a reminder of exactly why you don’t need to text that toxic boy back, this song is it; who needs love when you have shaking floorboards and a strong beat in your chest?