It’s Friday, which means that we’re preparing for Flavorpill’s inaugural intra-office pool competition, and also that it’s time for our regular roundup of new music to download for free. This week we’re pleasantly surprised by a new Tricky song, as well as free stuff from Low and Glass Candy, new work by Xander Harris, atmospheric weirdness from Barn Owl and William Tyler, Titus Andronicus’ Patrick Stickles covering his best friends, and more. None of this will cost you a dime, so click through and get a piece of the action!
Tricky — “Nothing’s Changed” Despite the title, Tricky’s PR crew are promoting this as “a return to form,” which is usually a tacit admission that his last couple of records have sucked. It certainly sounds like classic Tricky, all fractured breakbeats over which new vocalist Francesca Belmonte does her best Martina Topley-Bird impression, while Tricky himself mumbles ominously in the background. Despite the faint whiff of self-plagiarism, this isn’t bad — get it at Soundcloud.
Low — “So Blue” We posted this track earlier today in our roundup of albums to hear in March, a propos of Low’s new album (from which it’s taken) — and it turns out it’s available for free download from Stereogum. Rejoice!
Glass Candy — “Geto Boys” The ever-munificent Johnny Jewel posted this old(ish) Glass Candy track as a free download earlier this week — if you don’t already have it, then knock yourself out!
Xander Harris — “Night Fortress” We’re big fans of Buffy-referencing Not Not Fun producer Xander Harris — his faux horror soundtrack Urban Gothic was one of our favorite records of 2011, and was a contender for our big ol’ list of great albums you’ve never heard. This new track is taken from his upcoming album The New Dark Age of Love, and is somewhat more dance floor-oriented. We can’t wait to hear the rest of the album, and in the meantime, we suggest you grab “Night Fortress” via XLR8R.
El Perro del Mar — “Hold Off the Dawn” (Vessel remix) We featured another remix of this track last week, and the two couldn’t really be more different — sure, Swedish duo Gidge’s remix wasn’t exactly upbeat, but it’s a veritable ray of sunshine compared to the witchy sounds contained on this reworking by Tri Angle-signed producer Vessel. El Perro goes witch house? Believe it.
Barn Owl — “The Long Shadow” And here’s some more darkness, again hosted at the excellent Self-Titled Magazine — we don’t know a great deal about Barn Owl, but this slow-building, portentous atmospheric piece makes us want to learn more. Get it right here.
Patrick Stickles — “Hey Tonight” In which the Titus Andronicus frontman covers like-minded souls Free Energy, and does a rather fine job of it. Get the song via Stereogum (and also check out Free Energy’s Paul Sprangers getting amongst it on the comments section.)
William Tyler — “Cadillac Desert” An instrumental cut of a new solo record by William Tyler, who’s best known as guitarist in Lambchop and the Silver Jews. The song moves in similar downbeat, country-influenced territory to those two bands, although the whole thing is lent weight and dramatic effect by portentous reverb and some unexpected distortion. The result falls somewhere between Jackie-O Motherfucker and Paris, Texas, and we highly recommend it. Get it at Aquarium Drunkard.
Ballaké Sissokou — “Kabou” A beautifully melancholy piece that finds Malian kora player Ballaké Sissokou collaborating with French cellist Vincent Segal — the result is really rather lovely, and can be downloaded (for today only) via KCRW’s Top Tune program.
Moon King — “Appel” They have the sort of name we can’t help ridiculing, but Toronto duo Moon King really aren’t bad at all — this track mines very ’80s infuenced shoegaze-y territory, and does so to rather good effect. You can get it via their Soundcloud.