Track Of The Day: Peaness – ‘What’s The Use?’

Originally planned for release in summer 2020, ‘What’s The Use?‘ is the latest single from Chester trio Peaness, taken from their debut album due out in 2022.

It drops in bright and makes its statement immediately: What’s the use? Throughout, the track is upbeat and fun, with bouncy strings, a fast beat and cheery-sounding vocals. It’s an addictive and absorbing sound that is impossible not to bop along with.

The lyrics, on the other hand, do not share the same sense of limitless joy. Instead, they go into quite a bit of detail about how it feels to be thoroughly depressed. The song acutely describes the feeling of a sigh that carries the weight of the world in it. The refrain “Can I just stay in bed?” repeats and repeats until you can’t escape the utter lack of motivation to get up and engage with the world. Finally, the eponymous “what’s the use?” carries the overwhelming feeling of all the inescapable pressure that won’t leave you be, even when you do manage to drag yourself out of bed.

I absolutely adore the juxtaposition of the two massively contrasting styles between the music and the lyrics, it’s so delightfully nihilistic. It encapsulates a relatable sense of freedom that comes with accepting that, actually yeah, things are pointless sometimes.

The song has been released alongside a video compiled of phone footage of various shenanigans shot on the band’s previous tours. It matches the music in terms of its fast pacing and general sense of joy, and adds another layer of complexity to the content. You see the band on their adventures, in nice restaurants, at landmarks, at funfairs, playing gigs, practicing, stroking their pets. It feels like an immensely powerful comment about what depression can look like, about how you can seem like you’re living your best life while all your lowest feelings are still very much present.

You can feel how the past eighteen months have shaped the song. Even without the context of the pandemic, the full piece feels incredibly meaningful. When you add in the global trauma we all share right now, it becomes all the more powerful, as the clips and music become happy memories experienced from that all-consuming bed in the lyrics.

‘What’s The Use?’ is a brilliantly constructed song and so, so catchy. The 2022 album can’t come soon enough.

‘What’s The Use?’ is out now via the band’s own label, Totally Snick Records. Catch them live at their biggest ever London headline show at Oslo on 18th November. Tickets here.

Kirstie Summers

Track Of The Day: Lily Konigsberg – ‘Sweat Forever’

Sweat Forever’, the latest single from Brooklyn born and based Lily Konigsberg, is beautiful, shimmering electronic pop. Konigsberg’s intimate vocals are buoyed by a gentle, jangly ’90s guitar, somewhat reminiscent of a Dawson’s Creek soundtrack (in the very best way!), and the sweetest melodies, which make this something really special.

Konigsberg said she wrote ‘Sweat Forever’ as she navigated the break-up of a long-term relationship and some big transitions in her life. But, while it’s bittersweet, there is so much lightness too. She said: “It’s mostly about the bad part of going through a huge change in your life and the confusion surrounding that. But now I’m in the good part, so there’s something to celebrate. Sweat on brother!

It’s proper pop music – nostalgic and polished, which isn’t necessarily something you’d expect given Konigberg’s earlier, more guitar-based singles or their work with self-proclaimed “New York’s weirdest” post-punk trio, Palberta. However, it’s testament to the sheer range of her talents. I’m looking forward to hearing more of them on her forthcoming debut album, Lily We Need To Talk Now, which is due at the end of the month.

Lily Konigsberg’s debut album, Lily We Need To Talk Now, will be released on Wharf Cat Records on 29th October. It is available to pre-order here.

Vic Conway

Photo Credit: Felix Walworth

ALBUM: ME REX – ‘Megabear’

Megabear by ME REX is easily one of the coolest and most ambitious albums to come out this generation.

It is comprised of fifty two short tracks, most of which last a little over thirty seconds, with a total album length of around half an hour. Each track has a corresponding tarot card designed by artist Jono Ganz. This is so you can shuffle your tarot deck, play the tracks in whichever order the cards decide for you and experience the album in an entirely new way.

You’ll have a perfectly enjoyable time listening to the songs in the order they appear automatically on bandcamp, but you’ll miss out on the layers that make this experiment so special. These tracks are designed to be played in near infinite possible combinations. They are designed to be able to flow from one to the next, regardless of which songs might get paired. To me, this sounds like it should be impossible. But ME REX have made it work. Particularly if you listen to it on their purpose-built website – free of the risk of Spotify ads to break your immersion. It’s easy to let the site automatically shuffle the tracks for you and listen to the looping, flowing music for hours on end. If you want to look for the seams between songs, obviously you can find them. But it takes no effort at all to sit back and let them wash over you in their shifting uncanny beauty.

The music itself suits being attached to a tarot deck so well. It is clearly influenced by the movement of nature, with lyrics referencing rivers and refrains that evoke that feeling of being carried along gentle eddies through a glittering natural wonderland. There is a gorgeous dance between the keys, strings and drums. ME REX have crafted something genuinely special, forging a unique sound for themselves that is distinct, original and stunning.

The thought and effort that has gone into creating a piece that makes you think about not just the music you’re listening to, but how you consume music in the digital age is astounding. It is a thoroughly well executed experiment that deserves to be remembered for sheer ambition alone.

Megabear is out now. Buy the album, plus your very own special deck of tarot cards, on bandcamp.

Kirstie Summers

Track Of The Day: Coco – ‘Come Along’

Formed in 2019, LA trio Coco consists of Maia Friedman (of Dirty Projectors, Uni Ika Ai), Dan Molad (of Lucius, Chimney), and Oliver Hill (of Pavo Pavo, Dustrider). Now, following acclaim for their beautifully wistful last offering, ‘Knots‘, they have shared a stirring brand new single ahead of the release of their debut album next month.

Oozing a twinkling, ethereal haze, ‘Come Along‘ flows with a lilting energy, creating a dreamy, shimmering soundscape. As gentle strummed melodies provide the backdrop for the blissful allure of harmonious vocals coming together, the track bathes the listener in its sweeping euphoric splendour. With shades of the sparkling energy of the likes of Real Estate, ‘Come Along’ invites you to immerse yourself in its captivating grace; soothe yourself with its rippling sonic waves.

The track is accompanied by a new video, perfectly reflecting its breezy, uplifting vibes. The band explain:

The skeleton of ‘Come Along’ was recorded live, all together, with Oliver on guitar, Maia on drums, and Danny on bass. The underlying chord loop plays throughout as other instruments are weaved in one by one, picking up momentum and rolling forward as everything joins in harmony. The video mimics the song in this way, portraying our individual days-in-the-life with each of us filming one another on handheld camcorders. The day culminates in our first performance together as Coco, at a houseshow in Oliver’s garage with our friends as backing band. When it all came together we were pleased with the juxtaposition of the comically low fidelity and fast-paced editing, like a homemade action movie.

Watch the video for ‘Come Along’ here:

Coco’s eponymous debut album is set for release on 29th October.

Mari Lane

Photo Credit: Stella Hartmann