As every year, the Indietracks Festival compilation features plenty of pop thrills, and at £4 for 45 tracks and all proceeds to the Midland Railway Trust you'd be a fool not to take on its delights. For one, there's The Office Worker from the new Mammoth Penguins album John Doe, a concept record featuring Sophie from Haiku Salut, presumably on the electronics. We know little about the record thus far but more should be revealed when they play our night at Leicester Firebug on Wednesday 26th July supporting Chorusgirl, with awkward noisepoppers Jesuscarfish opening. Also sneaking back with their swooning jangle present and correct, if slightly beefier and feedback-y, come fellow STN Presents alumni The Understudies with the lovelorn Is There Gonna Be Dancing? Oh, while we're on Emma Kupa, her immediate release concern is The Heyman Kupa Band's long promised album out on the 21st, Over's Now Overdue bittersweet summer pop finding its meter in this weather.
It's six years since we've heard from Emil Svanängen's awkward pop noir as Loney Dear, his self-titled seventh album released via Peter Gabriel's Real World Records on 22nd September and previewed by Sum, built on bruised confessionals and apreggiating synths like a low budget Bon Iver. Similarly melancholic in an expansive field of modernity is Lost Horizons, newly signed to Bella Union for album Ojalá out November 3rd, which is reasonable given it's Simon Raymonde's own project with Cocteaus-associated 4AD band Dif Juz's Richie Thomas and a selection of guest singers, here the Innocence Mission's Karen Peris swooning in widescreen and making the album a fascinating prospect. The unexpected about-face of Wolf Alice continues - breathy, hazy, built on layers of synths and shoegaze dynamics that devolve into open road dreaminess and sounding nothing like Yuk Foo, it bodes fascinatingly for Visions Of A Life, out 29th September. Ghostpoet's Dark Days & Canapés... well, it has a terrible title, but the album out August 18th promises to be uneasily brooding in an adjacent way to his previous work, very reminiscent of Massive Attack's incoporation of darkly menacing post-punk into their dynamic on Mezzanine.
Hey, time for white indie boy to write about grime, and Dizzee Rascal's back amongst us! No superstar producer, no big name guest slots and definitely no shouting James Corden, Wot U Gonna Do? is self-critical dark drama, Boy In Da Corner grown up and paranoid for what he did with all those years. Skepta, two years Dizzee's senior but who took the long way round to a comparable level of fame, goes in - and not just on the traditional HATERZ - on surprise new track Hypocrisy.