Several weeks ago Lower Dens put out "Brains", the thrilling lead single from their upcoming album Nootropics.
The Baltimore band – whose 2010 debut record, Twin Hand Movement, was excellent – deal in slow-burning art-rock with krautrock-inspired rhythms. For the second single from the 30 April-released LP, they slow things down with a track called "Propagation", all swirling guitar lines and hazy atmospherics alongside Jana Hunter's moody vocals. The track is streaming at snd.sc/GRSmLH. It's not quite up there with "Brains" but another interesting cut from an LP bearing great expectations.
Filthy fun from a rapper to bank on
Anointed as the latest official "next big thing" at the end of last year, young Harlem rapper Azealia Banks has been keeping things ticking over with leaked tracks, a deal with a major label (Universal), a few collaborations and some touring. She has said her debut album will be called Broke with Expensive Taste, and it's reportedly slated for a September release. Her latest stopping point is Diplo-produced track "Fuck Up the Fun", available at snd.sc/GRFpFr. Pairing cacophonous, trilling drums (and the "bubbling" help of DJ-Master D, ind.pn/GT5H87) with Banks's spitfire rapping, it's good, confrontational fun.
Best Coast surf comeback waves
Best Coast made waves in 2010 with the hazy garage rock-meets-surf-pop of some sterling singles and debut LP, Crazy for You. The LA-based duo returned this week with the first single from their new album, The Only Place (due on 14 May). Going by the same name, the single sticks largely to the formula, with a swift blast of guitar pop equal parts summery, hazy and nostalgic. In a slight expansion of their sound – to these ears – there's hints of country and Neutral Milk Hotel in it, too. Grab the MP3 free at bestcoast.us or snd.sc/GSe8mK.
Replica man remodels Glass
The ambient/electronic artist Oneohtrix Point Never showed up on the radar with 2011's acclaimed Replica, so much so that he was invited to contribute to an album Beck is curating of Philip Glass remixes to celebrate the composer's 75th birthday. His offering was a take on the Glass score for the 1982 experimental film Koyaanisqatsi. Alas, Beck rejected Oneohtrix's attempt but the latter guested on Jersey City radio station WFMU last week, where he aired the remix. Hear it at ind.pn/GVw0xR.