PLAYLIST: January 2023

The Get In Her Ears team have put together another eclectic mix of indie & alternative tunes, guitar anthems and electronic sounds for your listening pleasure. Take some time to scroll through our track choices below, and make sure you press play on the Spotify playlist at the end of this post.

Follow GIHE on Spotify to hear all of our previous playlists too.

Amaroun – ‘Just Be Good To Me’ (SOS Band Cover)
This is the latest release from London-based artist Amaroun, a firm favourite of ours here at GIHE! We are all loving this cover of ‘Just Be Good To Me’, originally by SOS Band.
(Tash Walker)

Ritual Forms – ‘Down’
A brooding, atmospheric soundscape that explores the way our moods fluctuate during uncertain times, I’m obsessed with this track from London-based trio Ritual Forms. Lifted from their upcoming debut album, Nighttime Economy, which is set for release on 2nd March, it’s a captivating blend of hypnotic loops, steady beats and intoxicating vocals.
(Kate Crudgington)

CIRCE – ‘Undone’
A sonic manifestation of power, I love this new tune from dark-pop artist Circe. I’ve been listening to her 2020 EP She’s Made Of Saints again recently, and I’m always so impressed by her ability to create such immersive, cinematic soundscapes that melt away the edges of reality. ‘Undone’ is no exception. I can’t wait to see her perform it live at The Shacklewell Arms on Monday 30th Jan. (KC)

Frankie Rose – ‘Anything’
Set to release her fifth studio album this Spring, New York based artist Frankie Rose has now shared her latest single ‘Anything’. Propelled by a whirring ‘80s-inspired drive with shades of the likes The Cure (you should also check out Rose’s Cure cover album Seventeen Seconds), a glistening soundscape flows with a stirring anthemic majesty, creating a blissful slice of electro-pop. Love As Projection, the upcoming new album from Frankie Rose, is set for release on 10th March via Night School Records. (Mari Lane)

ARXX – ‘Ride Or Die’
I challenge you to listen to this new one from absolute faves ARXX without hitting repeat at least 10 times… It’s just such a totally infectious anthem. All propelled by thrashing, impeccable time-keeping from Clara, ‘Ride Or Die’ showcases the gritty, emotion strewn vocals of Hanni, alongside sweeping catchy pop hooks and an empowering euphoria of unified voices singing along with the chorus. An utterly uplifting celebration of queer love and unwavering friendship, it’s the perfect sing-along anthem live. Being able to share a room full of adoring fans, all joining in joyously with “I would” at The Social a few months back was a blissfully memorable experience that I hope to re-live very soon. ‘Ride Or Die’ is out now via Submarine Cat Records, ahead of the release of ARXX’s upcoming album of the same name, which is set for release on 31st March. Pre-order here. (ML)

Grandmas House – ‘Desire’
GIHE fave Grandmas House are back with this gritty new single! Taken from the upcoming new EP, Who Am I, which is set for release on 3rd March via Brace Yourself Records, the track is inspired by the disorientating power of romantic infatuation, full of charged riffs and commanding beats. (KC)

Piss Kitti – ‘I’m Jammed’
This belter from Liverpool-based punks Piss Kitti was released at the end of 2022, but it’s a taste of what’s to come from the band later this year. Having previously supported Black Lips, Dream Wife and Amyl & The Sniffers, it looks like 2023 is set to be another big year for the band. I’m looking forward to hearing more tunes like this in the near future. (KC)

ALT BLK ERA – ‘Rockstar’
From the opening riff of ‘Rockstar’ to the track’s final lyric, I love this alternative anthem from Nu Metal sister duo ALT BLK ERA. It dropped into my inbox at the end of last year and it’s been ricocheting around my skull ever since. (KC)

Tokky Horror – ‘Hammer 2 The Face’
Rave-punk trio Tokky Horror will be unleashing this frenzied, excellently named anthem on their crowds at grassroots music venues across the UK for Independent Venue Week from the 1st of February! This track is described as “A sub 2-minute blast of urgency, taking aim at the casual sexual harassment that plagues femme’s in gig spaces.” I can’t wait to hear it live at The Black Heart in Camden. Full details & ticket links for the band’s upcoming IVW shows can be found here. (KC)

Alien Chicks – ‘Cowboy’
The new single from GIHE faves and Ones to Watch for this year, Alien Chicks’ ‘Cowboy’ offers an insight into the trio’s ability to create relentless funk-fuelled punk-rock with a truly unique edge. Building from a sultry rumination on anxieties to a frenzied blast of whirring, riotous emotion, it’s another wonderfully chaotic cacophony from the South London trio. Watch the new video for ‘Cowboy’ here. (ML)

About Bunny – ‘Teeth’
Taken from their recent EP Mixtape Vol.1, this single from London-based rock band About Bunny bites chunks out of its listeners. They’ll be playing at The Hope & Anchor in Islington on 16th February, so head down to see them live if you like what you hear. (KC)

Berries – ‘Spiral’
Following the release of their debut album, How We Function, last year, long term faves Berries have been going from strength to strength lately. Recent single ‘Spiral’ showcases all there is to love about the London trio; an instantly infectious slice of garage-rock, it hits you with its raw, scuzzy power and Holly’s distinctive sumptuous vocals and spiky guitar hooks. Driven by a frenetic energy, it perfectly captures the utterly compelling allure of the band’s live shows – witness this for yourself on their March headline tour – details here. (ML)

The Early Mornings – ‘Early-Modern Rain’
Having just released their second EP Ultra-Modern Rain, London trio The Early Mornings have been becoming known across the London scene for their energetic live sets, and wowed crowds at Left Of The Dial festival last year. Latest single ‘Early-Modern Rain’ fizzes with a jangly energy with shades of left-field legends The Raincoats, as angular hooks flow with a scuzzy allure. A perfectly playful slice of post-punk that will leave you eager to listen to the album in its entirety. (ML)

Softcult – ‘Dress’
Canadian twin siblings Softcult are back with this hazy new offering which tackles the issue of consent. Blending buoyant melodies with their candid lyrics – “It’s a dress, not a yes / Not a fucking invitation” – the band refuse to remain silent in the face of pervasive everyday sexism. The track is taken from their upcoming EP, see you in the dark, which is set for release on 24th March. (KC)

Death Valley Girls – ‘Sunday’
The latest single from LA psych-rockers Death Valley Girls, ‘Sunday’ oozes an enchanting other-worldly splendour. Building with a fizzing energy, it harks back to the psychedelic sounds of the ’70s California scene, whilst showcasing the band’s ability to create something that is utterly unique, reflecting on the process of addressing your pain and being honest with yourself. A beautifully immersive trip into the cosmic world of Death Valley Girls. Islands In The Sky, the upcoming new album from Death Valley Girls, is set for release on 24th February via Suicide Squeeze Records. (ML)

Mandy, Indiana – ‘Injury Detail’
Thumping beats and heavy, unpredictable rhythms permeate this track from experimental electronic outfit Mandy, Indiana. Influenced by the dystopian worlds of Blade Runner 2049 and video games like Bisoshock, vocalist Valentine Caulfield explains: “‘Injury Detail’ was inspired by the idea of being trapped in a liminal space, with the guitars creating a seemingly limitless and undefined landscape. The vocals act as a guide to possible salvation, or perhaps something of a more sinister intent.” (KC)

Lizzy Young – ‘Cigarettes Are Good For Pain’
Someone I’m very excited to hear more from over the next 12 months is Lizzy Young. This track is a love letter to everyone who identifies as a woman, a confrontational art-pop, electro and trap record! (TW)

Rumpistol x Kill J – ‘Walk On Home 2.0’
I was so excited to see Kill J pop up on track, and it’s one I’m going to let speak for itself. ‘Walk On Home 2.0’ is a sensationally layered soundscape. (TW)

Livia Rita – ‘FUGA FUTURA’
This sensational track is taken from Livia Rita’s album of the same name, and I can’t stop listening to it and leaning into the journey it takes me on. They will be releasing a music video for this track soon, where all the different creatures from their previous passages come together as a collective to create a portal into their queer mythologies. It is a mystical journey, a collection of possible future identities, inspired by our desires, dreams and fears for the future. It is a place of healing and fantasy, where nature rebels and magic abounds all in an attempt to unite otherworldly revolutionaries – to a swampy slow pop anthem. Are you ready? I am! (TW)

Nameless Twin – ‘Dead Roses’
I love everything about this haunting new single from industrial-electronic duo Alicia Rei Kim and Ryan Osterman aka NAMELESS TWIN. They’ve only released a handful of tracks so far, but all of them have been the perfect blend of dark, dreamy sounds. (KC)

Feral Five – ‘Truth Is The New Gold’
Ahead of the release of their new album next month, electro-punk duo Feral Five have shared the title track as a scintillating taste of what’s to come. Propelled by a fierce energy, ‘Truth Is The New Gold’ explores truth and trust between both people and information. Offering a glitchy soundscape fizzing with an ethereal whirr, Kat’s sweeping, rich vocals flow as a sparkling cinematic splendour immerses the listener. Truth Is The New Gold, the upcoming new album from Feral Five, is out on 10th February via Reckless Yes. (ML)

girl with dream – ‘HRT’ (Heart Replacement Theory)
I can’t get enough of this song by girl with dream, the newest project from trans singer-songwriter Chris Lawson alongside Rhy Climenhage. This track is all about the sacred power found in embracing yourself and participating in an act of healing, guided by self love and harnessing agency. Just beautiful. (TW)

Razor Braids – ‘Nashville, Again’
Brooklyn-based Razor Braids are a queer, all-female/non-binary rock band who combine the vulnerable self-awareness of indie rock with dynamic instrumentation, anchored in a 90s ethos – just like us here at GIHE! This track is a fresh look at an old fave of theirs, the first song they ever released as a band! (TW)

Frankie Morrow – ‘Sunflowers’
Having released their debut EP, Blue Parrot Backpackers Hotel in October, Scottish band Frankie Morrow finally formed their current fully-fledged outfit last year after initially playing together and separately in various musical projects across Scotland since their teens. Personally, I can’t get enough of their glistening, folk-strewn sounds and heartfelt lyricism, and love the lilting grace of this track ‘Sunflowers’. (ML)

‘LINN – Okay, Sister’
Copenhagen DIY avant-pop artist LINN has released this tune with all its soothing tones and acoustic pluckings, highlighting the vulnerability in the lyrics. It’s taken from her upcoming EP, Femte Dimension, which is out now. Don’t forget to check out the video which was filmed by her 4 year old – amazing! (TW)

Prima Hera – ‘Sidecar’
This is the debut release from Prima Hera, the solo project of musician Stef Williamson. A track all about self-doubt, told through the perception of an imagined other, it’s just beautiful. I’m looking forward to hearing more from Prima Hera in 2023. (TW)

Poolblood – ‘voyager’
This woozy guitar tune from Toronto-based musician poolblood is a tender reflection on the conflicting feelings that come with moving on at the end of a relationship. It’s taken from her recent album, mole, which explores the highs & lows of romantic and platonic love. The songs on the record were influenced by the dynamic between Keanu Reeves and River Phoenix’s characters in Gus Van Sant’s My Own Private Idaho, which is one of my favourite films! (KC)

Dog Park – ‘Sunny Decadence’
A bright, lo-fi indie pop tune, ‘Sunny Decadence’ is the debut single from Paris-based band Dog Park. Full of soft vocals and hazy guitar sounds, it’s a proper antidote to the January blues. (KC)

H.L Grail – ‘O.T.D’
Whilst you may be familiar with her from London icons Goat Girl, multi-instrumentalist, songwriter and producer Holly Mullineaux – aka H.L. Grail – has now announced the release of her debut EP. Taken from the EP, new single ‘OTD’ immerses the ears in a shimmering, celestial splendour as Mullineaux’s delicate vocals ripple beautifully with a whimsical allure. An exquisitely stirring lullaby. (ML)

Deerhoof – ‘Sit Down, Let Me Tell You A Story’
Having just announced the release of their upcoming 19th (!) album in March, math-rock alumni Deerhoof have now shared an enticing taster with their brand new single. Sung entirely in Satomi’s native Japanese (as is the whole album), ‘Sit Down, Let Me Tell You A Story’ offers a frenzied, colourful cacophony as quirky honey-sweet vocals twinkle throughout the fuzzy soundscape. I’m super excited about the return of Deerhoof and can’t wait to hear Miracle Level, the new album, released on 31st March via Joyful Noise. (ML)

New Track: Alien Chicks – ‘Cowboy’

A riotous fever dream of a song, ‘Cowboy‘ by GIHE faves (and ‘Ones To Watch‘ for 2023) Alien Chicks has themes of regret, confusion and self blame holding up its foundations. The track has a surreal feel to it that echoes the way these feelings surface in the subconscious; amorphous and jarring.

The song begins with a mellow vibe. Soft, low vocals float over music that complements them, but it’s already moving at a fast pace. The beat is quick, with a sense of tension coiled within it that hints at what awaits as the song ramps up to the chorus. The repeated “I am nervous” gets neither louder nor faster, but you can feel that tension growing within it – subtly but still noticeable, until it crashes into the discordant clash of the chorus.

The structure echoes the feelings that the song captures – regret and blame and self-doubt often creep up on you. The way they fester under the surface until it feels like they’ve been triggered by the most insignificant of misfortunes – a cut lip becoming the final broken straw that allows a broiling and chaotic eruption of emotions to burst through. The lyrics are chaotic; they take you on a bizarre journey that sucks you into the weirdness of it until, seemingly spontaneously, it makes its own unique sense. It captures that dreamlike feeling of reality being visible but not quite within reach. 

The juxtaposition of the gentler verses, versus the hectic instrumental clashes in the chorus, throws you around. The theme of intense confusion is as much baked into the tortuous lyrics as they are the cacophonous sounds.

‘Cowboy’ ends abruptly, jolting you sharply out of the journey it’s on and back to reality. It feels like you’ve lurched out of its dream, left alone to recalibrate with just threads and whispers left behind. Throughout the track, you can feel the way that a wide variety of different genres have influenced Alien Chicks’ music style; they’ve been combined in ways that jar, but with obvious intention. It’s a carefully constructed and instantly immersive song that knows exactly how it wants you to feel and nails it. A perfect example of the relentless funk-fuelled punk-rock that this unique South London trio are able to create.

‘Cowboy’ is out now via Slow Dance Records. Make sure you catch Alien Chicks live sometime soon – it’s an incredible experience! Details on their UK April tour below, and tickets for their Lexington headline show on 19th April here.

Kirstie Summers / @ActuallyKurt
Photo Credit: Lauren Cremer

GIHE: Ones To Watch 2023

2022 saw its fair share of highs, and lows…but if there was one positive to take away, it’s the immense amount of incredible new music that’s been released, and the hope of even more sublime offerings from some wonderful new bands in 2023.

So, following our Tracks Of 2022, Albums and EPS of 2022 and Personal Highlights 2022 features, we’re now sharing our ‘Ones To Watch’ for 2023 – Just a few of the amazing bands and artists who have impressed us throughout 2022, and that we predict will be reaching ears far and wide next year. Have a read of our choices, and make sure you give them all a follow to keep track of their unmissable achievements over the next twelve months.

 

Jemma Freeman and the Cosmic Something
Although Jemma Freeman is certainly no newcomer to the music scene, having released their acclaimed debut album, Oh Really, What’s That Then? back in 2019, and previously played with swirling indie-pop collective Landshapes as well as featuring in Wendy Rae Fowler’s band, I feel like over the last twelve months, they have really found their stride. With the release of their new album Miffed via Trapped Animal Records, they’ve showcased their ability to create immense, kaleidescopic soundscapes perfectly, garnering support from the likes of Mojo Magazine, plus airplay from Radio X’s John Kennedy, BBC 6 Music’s Steve Lamacq and Amazing Radio’s Charlie Ashcroft along the way. And they remain one of the most impressive live acts I’ve ever seen; we were lucky enough to have them headline for us back in October, and their utterly unique hypnotic majesty and psychedelic allure blew me away, just as it had done the first time I saw them live back in 2018. 
(Mari Lane: Co-Founder & Managing Editor)

Midwife
Watching Madeline Johnston aka Midwife perform to a sold out crowd at Cafe Oto for her debut London show last year felt like a privileged form of voyeurism. Fans were granted permission to enter the New Mexico-based musician’s dream-like, melancholy world, in which introverted tendencies and unrequited yearnings blur and clash with the urgent desire to find connection and understanding. Musing into her telephone mic with her soft vocals, it felt like Midwife was in dialogue with an unknown person at the end of the line, the distance between the two entities simultaneously expanded and minimised as she sang into the receiver, in front of a room of silent strangers. I was deeply moved by her music and I’ve been thinking about the gig ever since. You can read my full live review here, and make sure you check out Midwife’s most recent album Luminol too. It is absolute Gloomy Girl Heaven
(Kate Crudgington: Co-Founder & Features Editor)

Hypsoline
I’m ashamed to say I was a bit late to the Hypsoline party this year, but thankfully – due to Currls suggesting they play with them at their EP launch last month – I can now say I’m a fully fledged super fan of the Brighton band. In the run up to the gig, I was pretty much totally addicted to the fuzzy, sparkling allure of their debut single ‘Space Babe’, and afterwards I realised there was even more to love about them than I’d previously anticipated. It was a true joy to witness the twinkling, swirling energy and scuzzy charm of each of their eclectic, but equally catchy, offerings. And I can’t wait for them to continue to surprise and captivate me (and the rest of the world) throughout 2023. (ML)

Alien Chicks
Mari booked Brixton-based post punk trio Alien Chicks as one of the support bands for our faves Bad Sidekick for our final GIHE gig of 2022, and their sound knocked the hangover right out of my skeleton. Not only were they totally in sync with each other, relentlessly smashing out their angst-ridden anthems, their guitarist & vocalist was also playing with a broken hand, which is punk af. I can’t wait to hear more from them this year. Grab a ticket to their biggest headline show to date yet at The Lexington in April here. It will be worth every single penny. (KC)

Fräulein
I’ve made no secret of my huge love of London-based duo Joni and Karsten – aka Fräulein – since first being introduced to them in 2020 by Hanni from ARXX, and so it’s been really wonderful over the last twelve months to see them go from strength to strength, and get some of the widespread acclaim that they truly deserve. As well as the release of their debut EP A Small Taste, they’ve wowed us live at two of our GIHE events with their utterly unique and fiercely powerful live set. The duo have also shared stages with the likes of The Mysterines, Thee Quasi and deep tan, and – with acclaim from the likes of The Line Of Best Fit and Fred Perry Subculture – it’s been fantastic to see the positive reception they’ve received and the number of new fans they’ve gained. And this year’s already looking promising with a support slot with none other than total legends Big Joanie booked for 11th January at The Garage, and – I’ve been assured – new music on the very near horizon… 2023 is going to be the year of Fräulein, and I could not be happier for this immensely talented, consistently dedicated, truly innovative (and just plain lovely) duo. (ML)

Chuck SJ
Chuck SJ is a huge part of the London DIY punk community and their commitment to their art and activism is something that deeply impresses all of the GIHE team. They released their epic punk album, Resist Recharge Revolt at the end of last year, and it’s a riotous, eclectic manifesto of political and personal rebellion, spotlighting Chuck’s immense talent as a songwriter and a producer. I’ve yet to see them perform live, but that’s something I’m hoping to change in 2023! Listen to their album via bandcamp here. (KC)

Collars
Another band I’ve been a bit late to the party with, but am so incredibly grateful to have discovered over the last few months. Stepping in as main support for Currls at their EP launch last month fairly last minute, Cambridgeshire based Collars have become my new heroes. Having released their debut album Clyde in 2022, they’ve received plenty of acclaim from the likes of BBC Introducing, and have been wowing crowds across the country with their totally mind-blowing live set. As Kane simultaneously pummels the drums whilst blasting out whirring hooks on guitar, Dan exudes a captivating charisma as her powerful vocals soar (sometimes with the help of a megaphone) – it’s no understatement to say it’s unlike anything you’ve ever seen before. Keep your eyes and ears peeled for more from them this year… (ML)

CIL
Tash and I caught enigmatic artist CIL when she supported t l k at The Jago in Dalston at the end of March last year. She’s a composer, poet and producer who manipulates sound via a motion-controlled synthesizer. Watching her gracefully move her hands around the altruistic equipment was hypnotising, as was listening to her deeply calm, soothing voice. Definitely check her out, her performance is unlike anything I’ve ever witnessed before. (KC)

So, even if you may be feeling apprehensive about 2023, at least there’ll be some fantastic music to accompany it! Massive thanks to all who supported GIHE throughout 2022, it really means the world. And huge thanks too to all the amazing bands and artists who’ve soundtracked it, and who will continue to soundtrack 2023!

Track Of The Day: Alien Chicks – ’27 Stitches’

Written on the same day as their single ‘While My Landlord Sleeps’, ‘27 Stitches‘ solidifies South London band Alien Chicks’ distinct creative style. The new song follows similar structural beats in a way that pairs with the first song to establish the band’s unique musical and narrative sound.

’27 Stitches’ starts off light and playful – bright, twinkling strings dance over an upbeat rhythm, as soft vocals tell a slice-of-life tale about buying a second-hand television at an ideal rate. The track soon launches into a louder, more rambunctious chorus as the story takes a turn for the worse.

Growling guitars, rapid drums and aggressive vocals grab you and throw into the sudden tension in the scene; it’s impossible not to get caught up in the abrupt sense of danger. And then the song ramps up into an intoxicating cacophony of strings and horns that captures the chaos of the climactic moments of the story with a funk-fuelled musicality.

Alien Chicks are evidently hugely talented on multiple levels. ’27 Stitches’ is a brilliantly constructed song; as well as being so much fun to listen to, the instruments tell the story as much as the lyrics do. The track as a whole leaves you with a complete sense that you were there in the excitement of it.

It is no surprise that Alien Chicks are rapidly generating a dedicated following in London’s live gig spaces. ’27 Stitches’ exemplifies their creativity and skill, and shows exactly why so many people are excited to see what they do next.

Kirstie Summers
@ActuallyKurt