New Music Editor Christian shares his artist favourites this July, featuring Sun June, Lumer and RXC.
Great music takes you away somewhere else. Like a good book, or a VR headset, the best music lifts you out of the bed/bus/office/whatever you’re listening in and drops you somewhere else completely, despite what every other sense is informing you. For instance, after listening to Sun June for the first time, I closed my eyes, and when I opened them I was in the middle of a desert, with the sun slowly setting in the distance, the sound of slow, calming, syrupy guitars washing over me. Surprise, surprise, Sun June are based in Austin, Texas.
The five-piece have just released their debut album Years via Keeled Scales, and its languid, tranquil ten songs charm in every possible way. The lightly-strummed guitars, with their hazy country twang, and splashing cymbals meander, never becoming overpowering, allowing the almost whispered vocals to wistfully sigh, with opener ‘Discotheque’ and the nostalgic ‘Records’ particularly standing out. Next time you yearn for somewhere a bit warmer, don’t start looking at holidays; putting on Sun June is just as wondrous.
I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but there is an absolute glut of fantastic bands from Yorkshire at the moment. The current political climate has stirred an uprising, with a lot of bands with a lot to say, usually very loudly. And with debut EP Blood on Suits, Hull’s Lumer have shown that they could well be the best of the lot. Jagged guitars and apocalyptically deep basslines are a staple in Lumer’s twist on post-punk, but songs like ‘Ours is Treason’ surprise, with the coarse vocals contending with shimmering guitars and humming synths. Always unpredictable, always visceral, Lumer are a band to rally behind.
Melancholy is a key ingredient to making the perfect pop song. Abba knew it, Robyn knows it, we all know it. Bristol’s RXC also knows it, and her infectious, atmospheric electronica is steeped with it. The handful of tracks that she has dropped online are icy cool, full of glittering synths and skipping samples, whilst her breathtaking voice is always isolated, longing and regret a constant presence. New single ‘Higher’ is driven by an addictive dub-infused bassline, with RXC conjuring images of lonely late-night dancefloors and addictive relationships. It’s the kind of pop that drags you away from reality to somewhere you can get truly lost in.