Gigslutz Tracks Of The Week 29.11.13

Whilst we have become familiar with Sivu’s pretty alt-pop and youthful charm, new track ‘I Hold’ – which features the soaring vocals of Marika Hackman – has darker undertones than previous material and an added introspective depth. ‘I Hold’ combines Sivu’s characteristically emotive lyrics with Hackman’s captivating vocals and flawless, heartfelt harmonies all set against an eerie electronic backdrop. The end result is what can only be described as truly enchanting, a perfect slice of ethereal beauty that it is impossible not to become utterly immersed in.

With Hackman at his side, Sivu thus seems to have created an unexpected match made in heaven capable of delivering heavenly, ambient electro-pop ballads. If, like me, you need to hear more of this perfect pairing, the two are about to embark on their joint headline tour which begins in Brighton on 10th December. Prepare to be swept off your feet at:

10th December – The Hope, Brighton

11th December – The Lexington, London

12th December – The Portland Arms, Cambridge

13th December – The Birdcage, Bristol

Hailing from South London, appropriately named trio Happyness are set to release their debut EP at the start of next year. This four track offering is mixed by Ed Harcourt and was self-produced in the band’s loft. Our first taster of the EP, ‘It’s On You’, presents us with a perfect blend of soft garage-rock, twinkly melodies, subtly sardonic lyrics and a sound reminiscent of the ‘90s shoegaze crowd. With a broad range of influences, but with evident similarities to the likes of Yo La Tengo and Sparklehorse, Happyness are just that. Exuding upbeat, musically diverse melodies and an impressive songwriting talent, ‘It’s On You’ will leave you hungry for more of this poppy indie goodness.

So, for the perfect remedy for those winter blues, have a listen to some Happyness. Their self-titled debut EP will be available in digital format on 6th January.

Boston quintet Air Traffic Controller are currently creating quite a stir with their upbeat, geeky indie-pop that has recently been hitting our airwaves in the form of debut UK single ‘Hurry Hurry’. With jaunty melodies juxtaposed with self-absorbed lyrical reflections on relationships past and present and the hurried tedium of everyday life, ‘Hurry Hurry’ is a cheery, finger-clicking piece of grandiose pop. Unexpectedly fusing together frontman Munro’s apathetic take on life with uptempo, musically rich arrangements, Air Traffic Controller offer a refreshing take on pop that is both catchy and creative. So much so, infact, that I find myself glad Munro ditched the actual ‘air traffic controller’ day job and put his efforts into this project.

‘Hurry Hurry’ is released on 9th December, with the band’s second album ‘Nordo’ coming out in February next year.

I appear to be a little late to the The Rifles party; having formed back in 2006, the newly reformed original band line-up are set to return with their fourth studio album next month. In a more mellow mood than usual, current single ‘The Hardest Place To Find Me’ conveys how the band appear to have broadened their musical palette over the years – straying from their trademark Mod-Rock sound to a more melodic offering strewn with alluring harmonies, uplifting folky riffs and emotive lyrical storytelling. A charming indie-pop ballad that will gently tug at the heartstrings whilst maintaining the band’s characteristic rock and roll ethos.

Produced by Dave McCraken (Ian Brown), The Rifles’ fourth album ‘None The Wiser’ will be available on 20th January 2014.

Mari Lane

Mari Lane

Editor, London. Likes: Kathleen Hanna, 6Music, live music in the sunshine. Dislikes: Sexism, pineapples, the misuse of apostrophes.