Song of the Day

Song Of The Day: Gruff Rhys – Pang!

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Gruff Rhys

In the wake of our current Britpop tournament here at the Panic Manual, we figured we might as well make this Britpop week, taking a look at some of the acts that are featured in the tournament or some other projects featuring members of those acts. And maybe even some of the Britpop acts that didn’t make the cut for the tournament. You get the idea.

Today we take a look at Gruff Rhys, frontman of Cardiff-based Super Furry Animals, who has always followed his muse wherever it takes him, no matter how weird or esoteric it might get. This is, after all, the man who once played a concert to an audience of one lone horse in a field in his film Separado!

That muse has taken Rhys to his latest release Pang!, released in September of last year. Check out the video for the title track off that album below.

Song Of The Day: Sleeper – The Sun Also Rises

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Ricky’s Britpop tournament, which he posted to this site recently, acted not just as a fun way to pass the time while everyone’s staying inside, but also as a nice walk down memory lane to the heyday of ’90s Britpop. So we’ll use that an an excuse to check in on Sleeper, one of the acts in Ricky’s bracket who are still at it today.

Releasing their debut Smart 25 years ago, the band went on to release their breakthrough album The It Girl (which just got the Tim’s Twitter Listening Party treatment yesterday) a year later before putting out one more (Pleased To Meet You) and then disbanding for a couple decades or so.

After splitting at the end of the ’90s, Sleeper got back together a couple of years ago and just last year released The Modern Age, the first album of this century for the band who once wrote “Sale Of The Century.” It’s a solid return for the band, with “The Sun Also Rises” standing out as a highlight.

Check out the video for “The Sun Also Rises” below.

Song Of The Day: Esther Rose – Blue On Blue

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Photo credit: Sarah Danzinger

Esther Rose‘s You’ve Made It This Far was one of my favourite discoveries of last year. The New Orleans-based Rose caught my attention with the lovely tunes collected on that album such as “Lower 9 Valentine” and “Handyman” and definitely impressed when I caught her opening for Nick Lowe and Los Straitjackets back in September of last year.

Rose pays tribute to her former tour mate on her upcoming EP My Favorite Mistakes, a collection of covers from the likes of Lowe, Roy Orbison, Hank Williams and Sheryl Crow, whose “My Favorite Mistake” provides the EP with its title.

My Favorite Mistakes is out May 29 via Father/Daughter Records. Check out Rose’s version of Nick Lowe’s “Blue On Blue” below.

Song Of The Day: The Beths – Dying To Believe

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jump rope gazers
It’s important these days to cling to whatever it is that might bring a little joy to your day. And since the release of their debut album Future Me Hates Me back in August of 2018, The Beths have brought me a fair bit of joy with their music.

The New Zealand based four piece write songs that could best be described (as I did in our coverage of the band for SXSW 2019) as “feel good jams about feeling bad.” The band’s blend of poppy, upbeat melodies with more introspective lyrics is a winning combo, and one which has kept me coming back for more – at last year’s SXSW, I caught the band live on three separate occasions and would have gladly seen them even more over the course of the week if given the chance.

Future Me Hates Me has definitely been one of my most listened to albums of the last couple of years, so to hear that The Beths have a new album on the horizon was very welcome news. That album, Jump Rope Gazers, is out July 10 on Carpark Records. Check out the video for lead single “Dying To Believe” below.