Cian Ciarán, whose "Sewn Up" is among the best of this week's singles

The best of this week’s singles: Cian Ciarán, They Might Be Giants, Darkstar and more!

Published on September 17th, 2013 | Jonny Abrams

The best of this week’s singles will blow your bloody socks off, or at least one of them.

If you’re not wearing socks, keep an eye on your shoes.

The Beginner’s Mynd – “I Don’t Know” / “In the Spring”

Vintage psych-pop dripping with infectious enthusiasm and a laid-back sort of energy, if such a thing is possible.

A few too many Beatles calling cards for it to be truly of its own – “I Don’t Know”, for instance, incorporates the “Taxman” bass line, the huffing flutes from “Strawberry Fields” and some backwards guitar – but it strings it all along on a sort of mini odyssey that’s hard to quibble with.

Nice stuff.

Rocksucker says: Three and a Half Quails out of Five!

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Junip – “Walking Lightly”

Ooh, incantation-y! Lovely understated vocals, lovely pounding percussive shuffle, lovely ‘dawn of day’ sort of warmth to it.

Perhaps doesn’t ‘take off’ quite enough to justify its six-minute running time, but a welcome immersion nonetheless.

Junip by the way are Elias Araya, José González and Tobias Winterkorn.

Rocksucker says: Three and a Half Quails out of Five!

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Darkstar – “A Day’s Pay for a Day’s Work”

As we noted in our review of parent album News From Nowhere, this makes us think of a monged Animal Collective covering “All I Wanna Do” from The Beach Boys’ 1970 album Sunflower.

That’s a good thing.

Rocksucker says: Three and a Half Quails out of Five!

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Filthy Boy – “That Life”

With lyrics like I have me a pretty symmetrical face / My limbs are intact, everything is in place / My skin is so soft, fresh-shaven and clean / I’m built like some guy in a gay magazine / My wife is so pretty, so earnest and kind / Phenomenal tits and the firmest behind”

…any kind of decent tune is frankly a bonus. Filthy Boy delivers in this respect too.

And a whistling solo! Winning, as they say.

Rocksucker says: Three and a Half Quails out of Five!

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Hejira – “Litmus Test”

Reminds us of Tunng, and anything that reminds us of Tunng is likely enough going to be one of this week’s better singles.

This is an evocative grumble if ever there was one, with some ace lyrics to boot.

Has the phrase “evocative grumble” been used before? We googled it and it has been, quite a bit too. Rats.

Rocksucker says: Three and a Half Quails out of Five!

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Fat White Family – “Auto Neutron”

Seductively sleek, with the confidence in itself to ‘wonk’ things up a little bit in the guitar solo.

Sleazily and sordidly alluring, with a satisfyingly rabid ending.

Has anyone ever said “satisfyingly rabid” before? A cursory google reveals two people to have done so.

In case that link doesn’t work, one’s an article about a religious extremism, the other’s about brushing your teeth with baking soda toothpaste.

What was this article again?

Ah, yes; the best of this week’s singles! “Auto Neutron” is definitely one of them.

Rocksucker says: Four Quails out of Five!

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They Might Be Giants – “You’re On Fire”

One of this year’s best and funnest songs from one of this year’s best and funnest albums is released as a single and granted one of this year’s best and funnest videos.

Singing mince? Broccoli rocking out on carrot batons? This is so great, so many kinds of hell yeah, that it unites food groups.

Rocksucker says: Four and a Half Quails out of Five!

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Cian Ciarán – “Sewn Up”

The lead track from an EP of the same title, “Sewn Up” would be the poppiest moment from the Super Furry Animals man’s forthcoming They Are Nothing Without Us album were it not for lines like “you morally corrupt fucking murderers” and “I hope you choke on your profit”.

Like the LP as a whole, “Sewn Up” is proof positive that politically motivated lyrics and great tunes needn’t come at the expense of each other. In fact, in tandem, it can be one of the most powerful tools we have, especially when it comes with a psychedelic video and is all wrapped up in just over two minutes.

It’s also quite a hoot to hear the “clean version” included on the EP, specifically “you morally corrupt…murderers”. Now that’s a form of censorship we can just about stomach.

Ciarán has blossomed into one of the best songwriters going…but then you can just read our review of They Are Nothing Without Us for more about that.

Rocksucker says: Four and a Half Quails out of Five!

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Those were the best of this week’s singles. Tune in tomorrow for the worst of this week’s singles!

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About the Author

Editor of Rocksucker and the website's founder, Jonny is passionate about the music he listens to, both good and bad, as well as interviewing his favourite musicians.