New Singles of the Week

24th June 2015

Courtney-Barnett1Courtney Barnett – ‘Dead Fox’

2015 has been a huge year for the Aussie songstress and this looks set to continue with the release of ‘Dead Fox’, perhaps the standout track from loquacious debut album Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit. Capturing Barnett’s meandering, lyrical stream-of-consciousness, this is a good example of how the prosaic (in this case a car journey) can ignite her charmingly digressive mind-spill and the conjuring up of some rather striking imagery. Roadkill, for instance, is described as “a possum Jackson Pollock is painted on the tar”.

‘Dead Fox’ borrows a chord progression from ‘Boys Don’t Cry’, contains Barnett’s catchiest chorus and features a video that looks something akin to a Happy Shopper version of Wacky Races. Though slightly more violent. Although I could easily have missed the episode where a hapless Penelope Pitstop is brutally mowed down by the Arkansas Chuggabug.


Amy Studt – ‘Different Colour Pills’

Taking inspiration from the multi-coloured pills she was given by her GP during a tough period of “unravelling”, Amy Studt’s haunting new single features her spectral vocals, a moody tempo and a guitar so steeped in reverb that it slightly echoes the doomy laments of Crybaby. Although still in her twenties, Studt has had a rather turbulent musical career; signed to Polydor at fifteen, she later scored a top 10 hit with a 2003’s ‘Misfit’ (quite possibly the only top 10 song to feature the word “arse” in its opening couplet) before being dropped by the label the following year.

Amy, whose adolescent pop-punk once saw her dubbed as Blighty’s answer to Avril Lavigne, has had a scattered recording career since then but, promisingly, ‘Different Colour Pills’ shows a more mature and delicate approach. Certainly, it could well be the best song about medication I’ve heard since the banging jingle from that Nurofen Cold and Flu Range ad a few years back.


Duke Dumont – ‘The Giver (Reprise)’

Pretty much anyone with a beard and a white smock can look like Jesus. But how many sandal wearing wannabees can perform the panoply of miracles on show in the video for house producer Duke Dumont’s new single? The video’s Christ-alike lead performs a number of marvels while casually perambulating down the walkways of Venice Beach but, to be honest, either his miracles are rubbish or he’s having a laugh. A balding fella is only furnished with a new mat of follicles in return for a bearded wife – “have a bald bonce for life or suffer the curse of having to romance something from a Victorian circus” seemingly the only options available.

Elsewhere our faux-messiah uses the flimsy excuse of curing blindness to callously pilfer a perfectly good pair of shades and, in the most pointless trick since David Blaine once sat in a glass box, he turns two copper’s cappuccinos into tiny goblets of Ribena. As for the ability to enlarge ladies’ breasts at will…well, to be fair, that’s actually quite a decent skill.

Scott Hammond