Best of What’s New

A selection of newly released music that caught my attention

Happy Saturday and welcome to another installment of my weekly new music revue. All featured songs are on albums that came out yesterday (October 21). Let’s get to it!

Arctic Monkeys/Hello You

Kicking things off today are British rock band Arctic Monkeys who were founded in Sheffield, England in 2002 by three 16-year-old friends, Alex Turner (lead vocals, guitar), Andy Nicholson (bass) and Matt Helders (drums, backing vocals), together with Jamie Cook (guitar, keyboards). After starting out as an instrumental band, Turner became their lead singer and frontman. Arctic Monkeys are regarded as one of the first bands who effectively used social media to boost their popularity. They also hold the distinction to have released the fastest-selling debut album in UK chart history, Whatever People Say I Am, That’s What I’m Not, released in January 2006. The band has since released six additional studio albums, including their latest The Car. Turner, Cook and Helders remain in the current line-up that also includes Nick O’Malley who replaced Nicholson on bass in 2006. Here’s Hello You, which like most tunes was solely written by Turner.

Frankie Cosmos/Abigail

Frankie Cosmos are an indie pop rock band around singer-songwriter Greta Kline. From their AllMusic bio: Guided by the succinct, sweet, and self-conscious tendencies of singer/songwriter Greta Kline, indie pop group Frankie Cosmos started as a prolific home-based solo project in the early 2010s. As a young teen in the late 2000s, she tapped into the quirky vibes of New York’s SideWalk Cafe anti-folk scene, which had given birth to the Moldy Peaches early in the decade, as well as the D.I.Y. ethos of K Records. Her songs appeared mostly online in various albums, sometimes on a monthly basis. Growing in popularity and influence, Frankie Cosmos made her studio and label debut with Zentropy in 2014. Two years later, Next Thing was her first Top 40 independent album. Though Kline had been recording with a backing band since Zentropy, the project’s first official outing as a quartet was 2018’s Vessel. This brings me to Inner World Peace, the third Frankie Cosmos release as a band. Here’s the lovely opener Abigail penned by Kline.

Archers of Loaf/Breaking Even

Archers of Loaf are an indie rock band formed in Chapel Hill, N.C. in 1991. According to their AppleMusic profile, they “were darlings of the indie world in the early to mid-’90s, thanks to an off-kilter sound that was edgy and challenging, yet melodically accessible at the same time.” During their initial seven-year run, Archers of Loaf released four albums. They broke up in late 1998 after drummer Mark Price had been diagnosed with and subsequently underwent surgery for carpal tunnel syndrome. In 2011, the band reunited in its original formation, which in addition to Price also includes Eric Bachmann (vocals, guitar), Eric Johnson (guitar) and Matt Gentling (bass). After a summer tour that year, it doesn’t look like they were active thereafter until February 2020. That’s when the band released a single, Raleigh Days, their first new music since 1998. And now Archers of Loaf are back with Reason in Decline, their first new album in 24 years. Here’s Breaking Even. This nicely rocks!

Simple Minds/Who Killed Truth?

Until February 2018 when I came across their then-new album Walk Between Worlds, which I reviewed here, I essentially had forgotten about Scottish rock band Simple Minds. After a series of successful albums in the UK and other markets between the early ’80s and the mid-’90s, such as Sparkle in the Rain (1984), Once Upon a Time (1985) and Street Fighting Years (1989), the band’s popularity faded somewhat. Now they are out with their latest and 19th studio album Direction of the Heart. While the group has seen many line-up changes since they were founded in Glasgow in 1977, co-founders Jim Kerr (lead vocals) and Charlie Burchill (guitar, keyboards) are still around. Other current members include Ged Grimes (bass), Cherisse Osei (drums) and Sarah Brown (backing vocals). Let’s check out Who Killed Truth, co-written by Kerr and Burchill. While it may not be exactly WaterfrontAlive And KickingBelfast Child or Stand By Love, it doesn’t sound bad.

Last but not least, following is a Spotify playlist with the above and a few additional tunes by the featured artists.

Sources: Wikipedia; AllMusic; Apple Music; YouTube; Spotify

20 thoughts on “Best of What’s New”

  1. It’s funny how many bands I think of as “new.” Archers of Loaf is a case in point. It’s always like, “Oh, yeah, they’re that new band… When did they come out? What? When? Huh… Wow, I’m old.” But in a good way!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I pretty much feel the same all the time, especially when it comes to researching tunes for this new music feature. Most of the artists and bands I highlight in these posts are new to me, though frequently I find they have been around for years!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I wondered if you’d get to Arctic Monkeys. the kiddo here (22) and I have quite different tastes but once in awhile they converge and she was telling me about that album , ‘The car’ yesterday and played a couple of tracks which sounded good. I know a tune or two by them but haven’t paid much attention to them before. Now, to go and listen to new Simple Minds – that should be good.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. All nice picks Christian. I’m a long-time fan of Arctic Monkeys, and it’s interesting how their sound has evolved over the years. I’m always fascinated at the names artists give their music projects, and there must be a back story as to why or how Greta Kline came up with Frankie Cosmos. And wow, I had no idea Simple Minds have released 19 albums! I’ve always like Jim Kerr’s voice, and their new song you shared is pretty good.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Arctic Monkeys is a band I’m aware of but have never listened to. The song is not what I was expecting but I liked it. If I had heard the beginning of that on the radio I would have thought it was Bowie singing. I found the Cosmos a little lightweight for my tastes. Simple Minds? They’re still around? You still hear them on the radio fairly frequently, especially “Don’t You Forget About Me.” Sounds like them. I wasn’t a big fan but their music was always interesting. I imagine they still have their fans. I liked the Archers of (Meat) Loaf tune.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I can’t believe they’re still around. Singer sounds a lot different than he used to but the guitars sound just the same, which is what I liked in the first place. It is kind of a nuggets name, ain’t it? I always wondered what it meant and on one of their album covers there’s a picture of a store or a business with a sign that says Archers of Loaf, which really doesn’t explain it either I guess.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. It’s so weird because I just looked at the album cover with the store that has the sign that says Archers of Loaf, and it used to be a real photograph but now it’s just a cartoon of that photograph. I thought maybe I just wasn’t remembering it correctly, so I checked the original release and sure enough it was a photograph. A picture of a girl leaning on a car in front of that store. Maybe they couldn’t use the photograph for some kind of legal reason and so they just drew a picture of it instead. Maybe they thought that was a better idea than getting a whole new cover


      2. Do you mean their name is a lot like Fountains of Wayne, or their sound? Their sound isn’t. Or at least it didn’t used to.

        Liked by 1 person

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