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The Far Out Playlist: This week's essential listening

Another week is done, and here is another round of new music that you need to wrap around your earholes immediately. It’s somehow August, and the likes of Dry Cleaning and Jungle have got some blistering new summer anthems for you.

Whatever you have got planned this weekend, we’ve got you covered, unless you’re one of the lucky ones who are heading to a festival. There’s no shame in wanting to spin some old classics, but there are few feelings that match the joy of discovering new music. The seven handpicked songs below will sound perfect through a Bluetooth speaker whether you’re having a relaxing Sunday BBQ with friends or just want to bliss out at home.

The weekly round-up collects the best on offer every weekend and puts them into a handy snack-sized playlist. 2021 has been a year that we’ll want to forget for the most part, but it has been an exciting year for emerging artists.

Music has been a constant release for many of us through these turbulent times, and now we can finally watch these new acts we’ve fallen in love with over the last twelve months live. That feeling of discovering a new artist, one you connect with straight away, is hard to replicate.

Whether it is a song by an artist that you’ve never heard of before or an old favourite that somehow you have allowed to fall off your radar, we’ve got you covered here.

This week’s best new music

Dry Cleaning – ‘Bug Eggs’/’Tony Speaks’

Far Out favourites, Dry Cleaning, have surprise-released a brand new double A-side single ‘Bug Eggs’ and ‘Tony Speaks!’

The two tracks were recorded during the New Long Leg sessions at the legendary Rockfield Studios in Monmouthshire. Rockfield, you know, the studio that made Rush’s Hemispheres, and The Damned’s The Black Album, and The Stone Roses debut album, and mother-flipping ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’. Yeah, that dump.

“‘Bug Eggs’ is about the confidence that comes with age, fragility and sexual desire,” lead singer Florence Shaw explains in a press release. “The lyrics to ‘Tony Speaks!’ were written days after the Conservative party won the December 2019 UK election. I was thinking about climate change, environmental catastrophes and political campaigning.”

Oscar Lang – ‘Write Me A Letter’

London based artist/multi-instrumentalist Oscar Lang has shared a brand new single, ‘Write Me a Letter’.

The latest – and perhaps final – taste of his upcoming debut LP Chew the Scenery, ‘Write Me a Letter’ is the fifth track/single/preview from the album that we’ve covered so far, after ‘Thank You’,’ 21st Century Hobby’‘Are You Happy’, and ‘Stuck’. There have been no duds from Lang yet, riding a four-song hot streak up to this point, and dear reader, I am excited to say that Lang is now five for five.

‘Write Me a Letter’, in direct opposition to the jaunty romps of his previous singles from Chew the Scenery, is a melancholy and mournful piano ballad about loneliness and leaving. “My heart hurts letting you go, so write me a letter some time.” It’s not a breakup song or a fully heartbroken tune, but it’s packed with palpable sadness that connects whether you’ve ever sent a physical letter or not.

Bleach Lab – ‘Real Thing’

London alt-rockers Bleach Lab have released a new single, the dream-pop showstopper ‘Real Thing’.

The spacey and trippy new song incorporates all different kinds of sounds: wide-open vocals and harmonies, early 2000s drum machines and acoustic guitars, poppy melodic sensibilities, and shoegaze textures. ‘Real Thing’ definitely feels like it’s roughly 25 years out of time, but there’s something that I find incredibly endearing about that.

It helps that the song is catchy, memorable, and incredibly calming. Lyrically, the track has a longing and ever-so-slightly bittersweet quality to it, with lines like “I really wanna hold you tonight” and “I really wanna see you again” reflecting an unfulfilled desire.

Arlo Parks – ‘Too Good’ (Unknown Mortal Orchestra remix)

Arlo Parks is having a pretty great 2021. Her debut, Collapsed Into Sunbeams, has ridden a wave of critical and commercial success all the way to a Mercury Prize nomination, and she’s celebrating the triumph with killer cover after killer cover.

It’s time for Parks to take a load off and let somebody else carry the weight. Enter Unknown Mortal Orchestra, the New Zealand psychedelic rock band, who have released their own remix of Collapsed Into Sunbeams‘ third track, ‘Too Good’.

The remix cranks up the soul elements while also creating a more vacuous space for the song to live in. Instead of the sunny and summery vibes of the original, the new remix takes all the good times and warps them through a funhouse mirror. It’s bizarre, like someone has moved everything around the room by only a few inches. There’s not really all that much different on the remix, but it has a slightly more eerie and sinister vibe to it.

L Devine – ‘Priorities’

L Devine has released the final preview of her upcoming EP Near Life Experiences: Part One in the form of the new single ‘Priorities’.

Highly electronic and icy-cold, ‘Priorities’ retains the disco-adjacent thump of Devine’s more synthetic songs and the caustic wit that permeates all of her lyrics. “Sometimes there’s moments where I feel like I’m fucking special/We go somewhere just long enough for my heart to forget.”

“I had the title ‘Priorities’ in mind for a while,” Devine explains. “I just wanted to get my frustrations in a relationship out, as I was so maddened that this person wasn’t putting me first, like I was with them. Over time, the song’s meaning has changed for me. Now it makes me think of the journey I’ve been on with myself since I wrote it.”

Amyl and The Sniffers – ‘Security’

Amyl and The Sniffers continue to confirm themselves as the most essential band in your life right now. A group with enough buzzsaw edge to cut down a redwood and smirk as it fell has released yet another serrated disc toward the sap-squirting bark.

The band announced their sophomore album earlier this month, and with every shimmy or shake that the band have made since then, they’ve proven that it could be one of the most volatile records of the year.

Jungle – ‘Truth’

Jungle have shared their vibrant new single, ‘Truth’, which is the latest effort to be released from their third album, Love In Stereo.

The London based duo’s upcoming record arrives in just two weeks on August 13th, with ‘Truth’ the fourth single taken from it. All of the songs have been feel-good so far, and Jungle have got their energy back after slightly losing their way on their second album, For Ever.

“‘Truth’ is another moment on the record which came very quickly and naturally,” the band say about the new single. “It was the most different sounding thing we had made at the time, and for that reason couldn’t ignore it. For us, it’s about youth, love and trust. The feeling of finding someone who means more than anything else in the world.”

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