The Mic Recommends...

As if the re-opening of beer gardens across the country wasn't enough good news, The Mic have rounded up the biggest and best singles of the week, providing a perfect accompaniment to the pints. Featuring dreamy acoustic folk from Big Thief, churning beats from London’s zaniest duo Sorry, and summery indie from The Lathums, read below to see what the world of music has to offer this week.

Don’t Be Scared – Sorry

This week Sorry released an equally grungy and electronic EP, filled with angsty vocals, experimental sounds, and processed beats. Don't Be Scared, the EP’s opener is the track you want to feast your ears on for the week. It begins with an eerie synth beat, accompanied by smooth vocals from Louis O'Bryen, with an almost Damon Albarn sound to them, cutting across the confusing and increasingly aggressive synthesizer. The two duos’ voices layered together, at often different times and speeds, creates a concerning yet incredibly musically satisfying mix, culminating in a sudden stripped-back finish to the song. The track is only short, around two-and-a-half minutes, but it fits in some of the best musical production skills the duo have shown in their releases so far. Overall, Twixtustwain EP is an enjoyable musical experiment. It’s a sharp left turn from some of the rock sounds heard in their last album, but shows huge growth for them, and exciting things for the band’s future. Rebecca Hyde

Off You – Big Thief

Big Thief’s beautiful rendition of the Breeders Off You leaves the listeners feeling even more in love with lead singer, Adrianne Lenker’s ethereal voice. The layered harmonics add another depth and dimension to the lyrics that compliment the band’s style almost impeccably. Whilst the song bears resemblance to the original, the signature folksy acoustic finger-picking of the band enables the song to feel as though it’s their own. A truly fitting song that melts into the band’s discography perfectly. Amber Frost

Cloud Sick Free Throw

Since 2019's What's Past is Prologue, midwest emo extraordinaires Free Throw had released a few tracks here and there, just enough to keep fans occupied, but have finally announced forthcoming album Piecing It All Together, with lead single Cloud Sick. With what, surprisingly, does not seem to be a pop culture reference in the title, the band continues to take on delicate issues with devastatingly heartfelt emotion. With the video doubling as a visual love letter to their hometown of Nashville, the lyrical context grapples with accepting the reality of how loved ones are left behind in leaving to tour, and how, even though there was never any intention to cause harm, the strain it puts on the relationship. The band admits that it took the pandemic for them to even feel like they had the freedom to take time off, stuck in a continuous loop of recording and touring like the other bands around them and that this newfound freedom has allowed them to write songs for their own enjoyment. Louise Dugan

Oh My Love The Lathums

The Lathums’ new single Oh My Love is an uplifting acoustic guitar track, inspired by lead vocalist Alex Moore’s experiences at the age of sixteen when song-writing helped him get through a period of “deep personal loss.” It is the band’s first release since their four-track Ghosts EP in 2020. Moore started writing the song as a young teenager but didn’t finish writing it until a few years later. “I was only able to fully finish the lyrics after I met all you lovely people who are genuinely interested in me and the lads,” he tweeted. The band have experimented with mellow acoustic tracks in the past, most recently All My Life, the third track on the Ghosts EP. However, Oh My Love takes a different tone – a jaunty, upbeat, and happy-sounding one despite being written about a period of personal darkness and turmoil. The Lathums have teased their upcoming debut album, and it seems likely that Oh My Love will grace the tracklist in style. Gemma Cockrell

Leave Me Alone – Pouya

The Florida rapper first rose out of the underground alongside names such as Shakewell, Fat Nick, $uicideboy$ and Ghostemane, firmly placing him in the cloud rap box. But Where Drop Out of School and FIVE FIVE showcased a rawer, almost acridly emboldened attitude set to pounding trap beats, most recent release The South Got Something To Say saw a move towards a more mature, introspective outlook for the rapper. Leave Me Alone, the first single to be released in anticipation of his upcoming album, and continues this trend. Set to a blissfully chill backing that leans more towards R&B, his lyrics venture into darker territory, questioning whether he can trust those around him, and how the world will ultimately continue on after everyone he knows is gone. Louise Dugan

Calm on the Valley – Iron & Wine

Sam Beam has been curating an ‘Archive Series’ delving into music that was written back in 1998 and 1999 when he was just beginning as a singer-songwriter. Calm on the Valley comes from the unearthed album, recorded before the release of their 2002 album The Creek Drank The Cradle. Beam recorded the song originally back when he was studying at Florida State University’s College of Motion Picture Arts and whilst he had mostly forgotten about the recordings, they were preserved by his former roommate who encouraged him to unearth his student year musings. As expected from Iron & Wine, the track features heavy acoustic guitar and double bass pizzicato that juxtaposes the delicate vocals of Beam but the instrumental and vocal forces work perfectly together. The slow, almost lullaby feel of the bass lulls the listener into a dream-like state, perfect for any sunset. Amber Frost

Edited by: Louise Dugan

Featured image courtesy of Free Throw via Facebook. In-article images courtesy of Big Moon via Facebook and Iron & Wine via Facebook.