Tracks of the week reviewed: Cher, Toto doing Weezer and Aphex Twin

Cher continues the Abba love-in, there’s a goosebump-inducing tale from Ray BLK, and Aphex Twin offers a yummy mummy-free answer to meditation

Run Run

You may well have come to this column in search of lols, but this week’s top track is far from it. Inspired by gang crime in London, over three goosebump-inducing minutes Catford-raised R&B star Ray BLK tells the story of trying to escape an environment where the odds are piled against you. On the strength of this, as well as Ray’s previous bangers – among them My Hood and her feature on Nines’ Rubber Bands – her debut album can’t come soon enough.

Hash Pipe

Following Weezer’s double-header of Toto covers (Africa and Rosanna), the yacht-rock veterans repay the favour with a version of the former’s 2001 single Hash Pipe. “The irony that we were smoking hash before these guys were alive was not lost on us,” guitarist Steve Lukather said in an accompanying press release, proving yet again that no one in pop has any idea what the word irony actually means. Expect the back and forth to carry on until both bands have exhausted each others’ back catalogues, and their own capacity for cringey PR stunts.

Aphex Twin
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You’d be best off not ingesting so much as a Nurofen before watching the latest video from the ever-grinning electro producer, lest your eyes pop out of their sockets and wrap around your face at its kaleidoscopic, 5D weirdness. Actually, just shut your peepers, let its lyrical bleeps and bloops consume every millimetre of your being, as you enjoy a meditation that doesn’t involve saying “namaste” in the company of people who wear their gym kit to Waitrose.

Gimme Gimme Gimme

Unless you’ve been living on a remote Greek island where everyone communicates via Abba songs, you’re likely aware that Cher is in a little film called Mamma Mia 2. As such, she’s releasing an entire album of Abba covers, starting with this vocoder-drenched approximation of Gimme Gimme Gimme that’s somewhere between “fun” and “worse than global nuclear warfare”. 

Two Slow Dancers 

Haunting, like a flickering striplight in your peripheral vision. Familiar, like a person you’ve never met but whose Instagram you’ve scrolled through back to 2012. Nostalgic, like the sound of the Vengaboys playing far in the distance. The new single from the US alt-rock singer is all these things, plus it’s more hypnotic than Derren Brown convincing you you’ve just pushed someone off the side of a building. 


Hannah J Davies

The GuardianTramp

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