It’s easy to see why some bands are really successful despite releasing consistently average music. Take Coldplay, the worse they get the bigger they get.
And then there are bands who despite consistently releasing excellent music always seem to fly under the radar, no matter how good their material is.
In Hidden Pleasures one of our writers introduces you to 5 of their favourite acts who deserve more credit than they get.
First up is GoldenPlec Editor-in-Chief Stephen Byrne with his selection of Hidden Pleasures.
Manchester one-woman-band LoneLady aka Julie Campbell should be a household name thanks to her ultra-funky brand of DIY dance music which takes its cues from the likes of Talking Heads, David Bowie, Talk Talk and Joy Division.
LoneLady’s 2015 album ‘Hinterland‘ is a marathon bop through a Brutalist architecture disco daydream - as if it‘s the imaginary soundtrack for big screen adaptation of a JG Ballard book which is yet to be commissioned.
Bleakly infectious and thoroughly engaging, LoneLady is the heir apparent to post-punk and essential listening in the eternal bleak mid-winter of Donald Trump.
When the recent social media craze to name a badder bitch than Taylor Swift was doing the rounds recently, the real question everyone should’ve been asking themselves was name a badder bitch than K.Flay.
Flawlessly bridging the gap between rock n roll, electronica and hip hop with ferocious riffs and beats, Chicago’s Kristine Meredith Flaherty aka K. Flay has been slaying genres since 2004 with a series of mixtapes and EPs before releasing her debut album 'Life as a Dog' (2014).
The aforementioned bitch Taylor Swift included K. Flay’s collaboration with Louis The Child, It's Strange, in her 'Songs That Will Make Life Awesome' playlist. You know what they say about game recognising game.
K.Flay’s second album ‘Every Where Is Some Where’ (2017) saw her earn two Grammy nominations' including best rock song for the majestic acerbic single Blood In The Cut. She was robbed, of course.
Baltimore duo Wye Oak have been mixing serene dream pop with jolting guitars and bass since 2009. Across five albums Jenn Wasner (Vox, Bass, Guitar) and Andy Stack (Drums, Keys) have proven to be one of the most endearing acts in indie rock.
Their 2014 album’ Shriek!’ is a modern classic dripping with Wasner’s evocative and ephemeral vocal refrains - which at times resemble Annie Lennox - and grooving bass and jittering guitars. Meanwhile, Stack controls the beat with his feet and left hand whilst adding flourishes of synth with his left.
It’s a truly captivating combination.
Wye Oak play Whelan's on May 6
The finest Ivy League post-punk melodies America has to offer come courtesy of Brooklyn’s Hospitality.
Swept along by the sheer bliss of Brian Betancourt’s basslines, the sweet nothing voice of Amber Papini and the effect-laden wizardry of Nathan Michel’s guitar solos, Hospitality invites you into a brash, quizzical, fun-filled world of lamenting lovers pondering the endless seas of the imagination.
Hospitality’s second album ‘Trouble’ succeeds where so many sophomore albums fail, by retaining enough of the band’s original sound and aesthetic whilst simultaneously dismantling it just enough to keep it fresh and exciting.
‘Trouble’ embraces the gamut of post-war British pop music; from the chirpy happy sad Going Out to the post-punk inspired Your Bones, revving with angular guitar lines.
Alexandra Lilah Denton aka Shura released her stunning synth pop-infused debut album ‘Nothing’s Real’ in 2016. Without a doubt one of the finest pop records of the decade, never mind the year, ‘Nothings Real’ is dripping with dancefloor ready bangers and indie disco slow jams.
'Nothing’s Real' is very much a coming out and coming of age record, but straight or gay it’s impossible not to identify with and get swept along by Shura’s sweeping pop sensibilities, which reference everything from ‘80s pop divas to Stevie Nicks and Stock Aitken & Waterman infectious level melodies.