Ace City Racers – Waiting
Ace City Racers pretty much take one element of each of Blur's hits and put them all into one song, creating something pretty unoffensive though unoriginal. Among other examples, there's the drum intro and chord sequence of Song 2, the fizzy high-on-the-neck guitar riff of There's No Other Way, and the half-spoken-half-song delivery of, well, most Blur songs. Not terrible but uninspiring.
Available to download from the Fred Perry website on the 13th of August.
Jonathan Snee – Good Blood
This acoustic singer songwriter writes what I would call uncomplicated songs, primarily just vocals and guitar. While its simplicity could work as a strength, the album is weakened somewhat by that fact that it's a bit samey and one-paced and could maybe have been shaved down to mini-album length (say, six or seven tracks) to keep things interesting. Worth dipping into, however.
Available now from Bandcamp.
Calum Carlyle – Strange Skies
Carlyle has an unusual vocal style, with each line enunciated clearly and deliberately. I don't know if I necessarily prefer this to the typical Scottish mumble but it's certainly refreshing to hear. I also can't say that I'm particularly keen on this acoustic singer-songwriter's brand of anti-folk but it's arranged and performed very well, the harmonies on Strange Skies being one example.
Available to download here.