#NewMusicFriday (February 16th 2024)

#NewMusicFriday Feb 16 2024

With the commercial cash-in that is Valentine’s Day done for another year, it’s time for this week’s #NewMusicFriday (February 16th 2024).

This week sees Idles attempt to return to form with ‘TANGK’, while Laura Jane Grace delivers one of her best albums with ‘Hole In My Head’. Hotly tipped Merseyside quartet Crawlers look to fulfil the hype on ‘The Mess We Seem To Make’. Whereas up-and-coming melodic metalcore group, BLOOM, drop their impressive debut album (‘Maybe In Another Life’).

Elsewhere, UK trio Profiler look to revive nü-metal with their debut album – ‘A Digital Nowhere’. Canadian indie rock group Mother Mother enter their ‘Grief Chapter’, and Blackberry Smoke return for their eighth collection of Southern rock. ‘Song of the Day’ alumni Carpark share their latest EP, ‘Born To Be Average’. While Ihsahn (Ex-Emperor frontman Vegard Sverre Tveitan) delivers an ambitious self-titled double album, producing prog metal, and fully symphonic versions of the album.

Finally, queer pop-punk trio Cherym ask us to ‘Take It Or Leave It’ on their full debut outing, celebrating queer Gen Z women and non-binary people in an anthemic fashion.

Laura Jane Grace
Photo Credit: Travis Shinn

Laura Jane Grace – Hole In My Head

Throughout her career, Laura Jane Grace, has never shied away from saying what’s on her mind. Whether that’s through her time leading Against Me!, her public acknowledgement of transitioning gender, or to her solo work. Her third solo full-length, ‘Hole In My Head’, is a candid display of self-exploration.

Front-loaded by its title track and spirited punk rumble, it’s clear Grace still has a fire in her belly. ‘I’m Not a Cop’ soon follows, embracing a rockabilly rhythm with punk-angst. Whereas ‘Birds Talk Too’ and hand-clapping-heavy ‘Punk Rock in Basements’ highlight the album’s ability to produce raw, short and sharp songs that have all the fat fine cut off.

Nevertheless, it is the acoustic folk punk moments that prove to be Grace’s true strength. The carefree country twang of ‘Tacos & Toast’ details a forgettable birthday and putting the final nail in a former love (“I think I’ll get a line tattoo’d through your name”). ‘Dysphoria Hoodie’ sees her find solace in a well-worn Adidas hoodie. ‘Keeping Your Wheel Straight’ serves as a thank you to St. Louis for providing a place of comfort in the city she now calls home. ‘Cuffing Season’ captures her need for fresh love; “Make me feeling something I’ve never felt before”. While ‘Give Up The Ghost’ wrestles with her purpose, questioning his position as a musician.

By taking a diaristic approach, Laura Jane Grace produces a set of intimate and honest songs that brilliantly highlight her vulnerability and resilience. When tied with blunt songs that never outstay their welcome, it results in being one of the best records Grace‘s name has been associated with for quite some time.

What is out on #NewMusicFriday?

Idles – TANGK
Laura Jane Grace – Hole In My Head
Crawlers – The Mess We Seem To Make
Blackberry Smoke – Be Right Here
Mother Mother – Grief Chapter
Bokassa – All Out Of Dreams
BLOOM – Maybe In Another Life
Profiler – A Digital Nowhere
Ihsahn – Ihsahn
Cherym – Take It Or Leave It
Carpark – Born To Be Average
Shooting Daggers – Love and Rage
Einar Solberg – The Congregation Acoustic
The Boxer Rebellion – Open Arms
La Famiglia – FTG WWD
Omni – Souvenir
The Requiem – A Cure To Poison The World
Esprit D’Air – Oceans (Special Edition)
Bite The Pain – The One
Blooming Discord – Memories From The Future
What Haunts You – Our Dark Shapes
The Year – Kill The Imposter

If you think I’ve missed something or have a new album/EP/song to tell us about, tell us about it here.

If you’re looking for the latest tracks focusing on rock, punk, hardcore, metal, emo, and everything in between, then check out our ‘Newish Music’ playlist on Spotify or Apple Music.


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