The best (and worst) new singles this week: Nick Cave, Greentea Peng and more

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The best (and worst) new singles this week: Nick Cave, Greentea Peng and more

Nick Cave
Photo: Amelia Troubridge
Words by Augustus Welby

Plus, new tracks from some Aussie music scene regulars.

Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds – ‘Hollywood’

Grief is stamped all over the new Bad Seeds’ album, Ghosteen – the first written since Cave’s son died in 2015. Its final song, the 14-minute ‘Hollywood’, interpolates the story of Kisa Gotami going to see the Buddha after losing her child. The Buddha asks Kisa to bring him a mustard seed from any house where no one has died. Failing to do so, Kisa learns that everyone is affected by mortality. You join a community of the bereaved when you lose someone close to you, suggests Cave.

Label: Ghosteen Ltd.

Hydra Fashion Week – ‘Delete’

Who’s in the mood for a bit of jazz-punk silliness? “Please, don’t delete… me,” sings Charlie Teitelbaum, who you’ll recognise from Melbourne trio Huntly. Teitelbaum could be giving voice to the track’s bass sound – not only is the bass tone dreadful, but it’s mixed disconcertingly loud. The fact they decided to crank it instead of attempt a revisal speaks to the sort of freedom this song campaigns for. It ends with a quick thrash detour, recalling the Minutemen in its unfazed flexibility.

Label: Independent

Greentea Peng – ‘Mr. Sun (miss da sun)’

The reflex to search for cryptic meaning in lyrics can distract from the beauty of straightforward sentiment. You could project symbolism onto Greentea Peng’s new soul/R&B number, ‘Mr. Sun (miss da sun)’, or just take it as a paean to the enriching powers of the sun. Given the artist is based in South London, you know those sun cravings are real. Producer Earbuds lays down an electronic beat with a sprinkling of sax to match Peng’s hip hop influenced vocal style.

Label: Different Recordings

Emma Russack & Lachlan Denton – ‘Catch’

Emma Russack recently retired her underappreciated solo project to put more effort into this collaboration with The Ocean Party’s Lachlan Denton. Denton – who, at 30-years-old, has already amassed a Panama Papers-sized resume of understated guitar pop songs – sounds like he’s just getting started. ‘Catch’ is precise and dedicated to the notion of being caught and set free by another’s love. The picking acoustics give it a ‘90s soft rock feel, but songwriting this sharp would cut through in any era.

Label: Spunk

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