Pylo – Young / The Woman (Song / EP) I really enjoyed this track, and it struck me as Kodaline but much better. Young is an excellent pop song that unfolds a little more with each verse, complemented by gorgeous male vocals and building instrumentals which reach a euphoric and sparkling climax. The track is a little straightforward, and you’ve likely heard songs like it on numerous occasions, but it’s well worth a listen, and you can do so below. Their EP The Woman was released very recently, and it offers much of the same, with Young featuring. Climbing Through The Sun is a bit more subtle, but packs a truly dynamic chorus that soars like its namesake, whilst closer Simple Souls is much more poignant as vocalist Matthew Aldus croons over sombre pianos before the track blossoms brilliantly. Pylo offer much more than your traditional pop band, if ‘pop’ is the right classification. There’s an honesty and maturity to the music that gives it something extra, and their ballads are just as effective as their sunny weather gems. 
History Majors – Traffic (EP) I featured History Majors briefly a month ago, and I wasn’t expecting their debut EP to follow so quickly, although I’m glad it has. Traffic is made up of six tracks (including the previously released Shadows) that take a clear influence from old-school emo artists like American Football and Mineral, with songs drifting on clever melodies whilst occasionally picking up, as is the case on excellent opener Backroads. Mellow, looser vocals often accompany hazy instrumentals, and the balance between the slow and sparking is perfect, especially on the lengthier On Looking which is excellently constructed, as climbing guitars sit beside drowsy vocals to great effect. For a debut EP Traffic is particularly good, impressing on all fronts with mathy, technical instrumentals and vocals that complement perfectly. Lights Out was my personal favourite from the EP, but each track tries something new and generally pulls it off. It’s available through History Majors’ Bandcamp page, where it can also be streamed in full. Brilliant. 
Lost Swimmer – Songs About Breathing (EP) This is another really promising EP that plays more on regret than nostalgia, with vocalists Dylan Combs and Ben Myers each giving excellent performances, catching emotions and conveying them brilliantly. The crushing and intense instrumentals of opener of Plan B definitely strike a chord, and the band reminded me slightly of Grandview in the way that they can change the pace and tone instantly without losing any of the appeal. There’s a heavier feel to the record that suits it well, particularly on the opener, but there’s a good amount of variety as the band frequently relent for gentler instrumentals and softer vocals. Second track Lost Swimmer had a slightly Brand New feel to it in the vocals, lyrics (‘I’m a shipwreck that’s been washed away by the tide’ is very Daisy) and catchy bass that sits behind it, making for one of the more personal track that slowly unfolds, upping the emotion and energy in the process. Expansive closer Chloe, Underwater sounds huge in all the right ways, packing a punch, whilst third track Forget, Regret is much more straight forward, without really suffering because of it. Lost Swimmer play music about feeling lost, amongst other themes, and by pouring so much into their music you get the sense that there’s a necessity in being able to express themselves in such a way, almost like breathing. Artists that lay themselves bare this freely often make the most compelling music, and that’s certainly the case here, and Songs About Breathing makes for almost compulsory listening. Highly recommended. 
Dead Birds – S/T (Album) Dead Birds are a UK post-hardcore band, and their debut self-titled record was released on Valentines Day, which isn’t particularly relevant considering the nature of the record itself, with tracks like Whores sounding suitably aggressive. I wasn’t a particularly big fan of the vocals on the record, but there’s a grungy garage feel to the instrumentals that works well, meaning that Self-Titled isn’t really your typical post-hardcore release, sounding slightly washed out because of the production. I Bet You’re Wrong and the more adventurous What The Shepherd Said were my favourites tracks personally, and the release is worth looking into. Not to be confused with Nordic prog-rock band The Dead Birds. 
The Vals – Quiet Part Of Town (Track) This track is particularly good, reminding me a lot of Tonight, Tonight by The Smashing Pumpkins through its dreamy, poppy instrumentals and nasal vocals. There’s a distinctly indie feel to it, and the crashing cymbals and delicate, layered orchestrals make for a dazzling backdrop to a delightful and charming piece of music that’s blissfully upbeat, and definitely worth soaking in. Stream it below with the rest of the band’s music. 
Godhead – The Shadow Realigned (Album) Remix albums normally go one of two ways, either adding something to the originals or detracting from them. Considering I’m unfamiliar with Godhead despite them having toured with the likes of Marilyn Manson and Slipknot, The Shadow Realigned is a solid record regardless of how it differs from the source material. It’s dark and eerie, coupling Nine Inch Nails with Tool, making for a haunting record with depth. The chorus of Your End Of Days (Jamin Boaz Remix) reminded me of Muse, whilst the verses throb with a brooding intensity and pulsating energy. Some of the tracks featured are noticeably better than others, and I particular liked the cover of Kiss’ God Of Thunder, which closes the release. The record is set for release on the 29th April, and it’s an interesting listen. 
no:carrier – Wisdom & Failure (Album) This was a strange one. Wisdom & Failure is a ‘noir-pop’ album, and it mixes a darker pop-mentality with brooding electronic influences, as it does on single Last Scene. no:carrier have enjoyed a good amount of success as a result of their polarising sound, receiving critical acclaim in regards to past works, but I struggled to really get into their music. That’s more to do with my own taste though, and I expect that Wisdom & Failure is a good album. I hadn’t heard anything like it, which is to the bands credit, but their latest record isn’t for me. If you’d like to see if you feel differently you can stream it below. [?]
Gustavo De Beauville – Volume 1 (Album)I normally struggle with instrumental albums as well, unless they’re really well done (Memorial) or down right bizarre (Polymorphic Code), and I’d say Volume 1 by Canadian producer Gustavo De Beauville is the former, which isn’t a huge surprise considering his reputation. There’s definitely elements of Russian Circles in Gustavo’s music, most notably in heavier tracks like opener Release The Kraken, which is as mammoth as its name suggests, but there’s also an electronic influence that isn’t quite The Algorithm, but is much more controlled. Overall Volume 1 is a striking collection of instrumental songs from someone who knows exactly what they’re doing. Very good.