by / June 3rd, 2011 /

Top Story: State’s Office Stereo – tUnE-yArDs, Underworld, Civil Civic, David Thomas Broughton and em, S Club 7

A weekly feature in which our writers share their favourite tracks of the week.

tUnE-yArDs – ‘Do You Want To Live’ (chosen by Niall Byrne)

Both times I’ve experienced this song live in concert, it has sent a rush of elation to my face, a pins and needles sensation billowed to my fingertips, a wave crashed against my chest and my eyes welled up. Such is the awesome power of Merrill Garbus in a live setting. This song is pure fire, mystical and uplifting. It’s fitting that the first time I heard this song live was in a church in Austin where the song’s celebratory disposition literally pulled people off their arses on the pews into a joyous and affirming reverie.This song does not appear in recorded form so if you want to experience it for yourselves, you’ll have to pick up a ticket for Tune-Yards’ upcoming European tour. They play Dublin on June 17th.

Beyoncé – ‘Halo’ (How To Dress Well remix) (chosen by Anna Forbes)

First off, let’s not even pretend this is some hipster refix. If anything, How To Dress Well’s “remix” merely condenses the bellowing power of Ms. Knowles in a song so camp and uplifting that if it were a movie it’d be Sister Act 4: The Habit Of A Lifetime and it would make The Lion King look like Angela’s Ashes. This song is an indulgent hug, g’wan, hug yourself. You deserve it.

MP3: Beyoncé – ‘Halo’ (How To Dress Well remix)

David Thomas Broughton – ‘Apologies’ (chosen by Alan Reilly)

For some reason I have never listened to David Thomas Broughton before last week, but upon hearing ‘Apologies’ I’m developing an obsession bordering on fanatical – but crazy is allowed, as this is creepy experimental folk music. The underlay of the tune is a soft boss nova beat, plucked guitar and clacking instrumentation but for all its lo-fi-ness this song is grand, rich with delicate arrangements and organ loops but most of all a throaty croon that is a peculiar blend of Antony Hegarty, Bill Callahan & Johnny Cash. Broughton’s voices pitches doubt and desperation in a way that is achingly guileless, if a little melodramatic, echoing the raw honesty of the lyrics which ring out like a confrontational confessional laced with black comedy, “ I tried all night to set your body on fire, apologies if I ever acted lazily.”

S Club 7 – ‘Don’t Stop Movin’ (chosen by Phil Udell)

Looking back at them now, S Club 7 weren’t the most convincing of pop bands but for a (very) brief while they ruled the chart roost and while you have to admit that their back catalogue hasn’t gone down in musical history, ‘Don’t Stop Movin’ is a stone cold classic. It went to number one twice, earned them a Brit Award and is still a guaranteed floor filler at any event. Plus the video was filmed in Dublin, at the Camden night club. Get your weekend started right now.

Mr. Little Jeans – ‘The Suburbs’ (chosen by Patrick Conboy)

Taking another band’s tune and reworking it whilst retaining the spirit of the original can be a difficult thing to do, but it’s something Norwegian singer Mr. Little Jeans has achieved quite brilliantly with her cover of The Arcade Fire’s ‘The Suburbs’. Here she takes the song’s lump-in-throat sentiment and crafts it into a sultry electronic track, complete with lazy, whomping bassline and seductively soft, almost whispered vocals.

Underworld – Scribble (chosen by Simon Roche)

In advance of every trip to London I always find Underworld adjusts the mind accordingly for a weekend of excess. The choice cut from the excellent new album, not only is ‘Scribble’ an endorphin rush akin to beaming sunshine, but Karl Hyde’s grin in the video pretty much nails how you want to feel all summer.

Soundgirl – ‘I’m The Fool’ (Chosen by Ciarán Gaynor)

Miranda Cooper was the clever clogs word”smith” who helped write most of Girls Aloud’s string of top ten hits. Who can forget immortal lyrics like “I should have known, I should have cared/ I should have hung around the kitchen in my underwear acting like a lady…It would have saved me” (from ‘The Show’) or the opening line to ‘Call The Shots’: “Static tone on the phone, are we breaking again?” Amazing. Now, Cooper is working with the trio they are all calling Soundgirl and with daft references to Glee, The Wire and Twilight, the zeitgeist-grabbing pop prize is well and truly “in the bag”.

Civil Civic – ‘Airspray’ (chosen by Josh Clarke)

Every now and again you find a band that’s yours, that you think no one knows about except you. And at 3 a.m in someones apartment you commandeer the laptop and demand that everyone listen to this band. But it’s worth it for that moment, 10 minutes later, when Blur’s Greatest Hits is back on, when someone comes up to you and says,”Shit! That band are amazing! What are they called?!?”. Civil Civic make noise. Beautiful, fuzzy, distorted, melodic noise. They sound like a spectacular car crash. This is their new single. Listen to all of their old demos, go see their shows and buy their album when it comes out. They may just be your new favourite band.

Fountains Of Wayne – ‘Radiation Vibe’ (chosen by Steve Cummins)

Stuck in my head ever since Male Bonding covered this at last weekend’s Primavera Sound, the past week has been spent reacquainting myself with the brilliant timeless pop of the underrated Fountains Of Wayne. Yep, they’re the band that gave the world Stacey’s Mom, but don’t let that put you off. They’re no Blink 182-light and there’s more to them then jock-power-pop. Radiation Vibe, lifted from their self-titled debut, is perfect guitar-pop — reminiscent of Teenage Fanclub and Weezer. There’s even better to be found on their third album, the excellent Welcome Interstate Mangers, where even Katy Perry found a tune worthy to cover. Pitch perfect summer pop.

Atlas Sound Feat Laetitia Sadier – ‘Quick Canal'(chosen by Hilary White)

Deerhunter’s Bradford Cox vented some intriguing sonic urges with his sideproject Atlas Sound. This swirling, pulsating piece of shoegaze beauty is an example of Cox’s refined ear for composition and texture, but it’s the Laetitia Sadier vocal refrain that makes this track a one-of-a-kind.

Joy Division – Shadowplay (chosen by Dara Higgins)

Peter Hook plays the Academy tonight, playing Unknown Pleasures, the debut from Joy Division which changed music over 3 decades ago, in it’s entirety with some backing band or other. Despite initial misgivings, I’m going to go, because whatever about the Joy Division legacy, it is, after all, his legacy and I suppose he can do whatever the fuck he wants with it, right? Perhaps this is his way of seeking closure…perhaps he owes on the mortgage. Whatever it is, Mister Hook has earned our indulgences, not least for this clip.