This week’s tracks reviewed: the Lemon Twigs, Sam Smith and Lil Yachty

Featuring precocious mulleted New Yorkers, Chilean-Norwegian indie pop and a teen tearaway who went viral

The Lemon Twigs
Foolin’ Around

Precocious mulleted New Yorkers the Lemon Twigs are the sort of band who, by rights, should be super annoying. Surely – surely – their songs must be a horrible pastiche of “way back when”, the sonic equivalent of those generic Topman T-shirts with “Vintage retro surf academy” or whatever on them. And yet they manage to be baroque and brilliant. Anti-cheating anthem Foolin’ Around sounds like a forgotten 70s TV theme song, and a glam rock one at that. Happy days indeed.

Boy Pablo
Losing You

Making other young upstarts (see: the Lemon Twigs) look as if they’re ready to collect their pensions is Chilean-Norwegian singer Pablo Muñoz, who is 19 but already doing a good trade in sadboy indie-pop. Losing You’s twinkly, lightweight riffs probably won’t linger in the mind for too long, but they’re sure to excite 15-year-olds in third-hand Kappa sweatshirts.

Sam Smith ft Logic
Pray

Listen to Sam Smith.

Re-releasing album tracks with a new rap added is a cheap, cheerful industry tactic, a sort of 60 Minute Makeover for middling B-sides. Here, doyen of mum-directed pop Sam Smith enlists Logic, the US rapper with all the zest and excitement of a ready salted Pringle. “They never knew my struggle/ Rose above the rubble,” he offers, in a verse that was definitely written five minutes before arriving at the studio. Terrible, but with the surprising effect of making Smith’s parts sound a little less “meh” by comparison.

Miya Folick
Deadbody

Listen to Miya Folick.

LA’s Miya Folick makes beautiful but unsettling, PJ Harvey-lite music, and Deadbody is no exception: a striking tale of exploitation and power that hints at non-disclosure agreements, abuse and gaslighting. In short, the ideal soundtrack to an evening spent lobbing your Weinstein Company DVDs on to a bonfire.

Bhad Bhabie ft Lil Yachty
Gucci Flip Flops

Listen to Bhad Bhabie.

Danielle “Bhad Bhabie” Bregoli rose to online infamy via an appearance on US talkshow Dr Phil, with the teen tearaway dissing her mum and inviting the audience to “cash me ousside, howbow dah?” (translation: let’s settle this out back). Since then, she has continued to elongate her 15 minutes, launching a clothing line and venturing into rap. Gucci Flip Flops – featuring “post-ironic” rapper Lil Yachty – is a paean to consumerism and, rather worryingly given Bregoli’s age, “pussay”. But, well, having listened to Iggy Azalea it could be a lot worse.

Contributor

Hannah J Davies

The GuardianTramp

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