Welcome to the Real Gone Singles Bar, a new feature where we explore some of the digital tracks that have been sent our way. We’ve always shied away from single coverage in the past, as the art of appreciating a full album is special, but listeners’ habits – and the way a lot of bands are releasing music – has changed. We’re now constantly finding ourselves with an inbox full of individual MP3s that fall by the wayside. Rounding up some of the best seemed like a good idea, and its something we’re hoping to take forward in tandem with our usual coverage. We hope you enjoy it and find something special enough to follow up!


First up, comes an instant classic for indie fans. Dreampop band Bed bring back lots of late 80s/early 90s vibes on the brilliant ‘Waves’, a short number where Cure-esque basslines collide with the layers of My Bloody Valentine. It’s a track that’s simultaneously dense and otherworldly, and the way the vocal glides easily over the swathes of retro guitar creates a track that genre fans will love from first listen.

Following a similar path, but taking more of a dreamy route – presumably inspired by a hazy summer – Sicilian producer Gae Vinci also harks back to the early 90s on ‘Camelie’, a track that employs a guest vocal that might remind some listeners of bands like Mazzy Star and The Sundays. The sound is a familiar one, but that doesn’t stop the number being thoroughly enjoyable, especially in the way the natural vocals are used to float above sparingly used, classic sounding guitar lines.

Scottish indie rockers Petty Cassettes have been likened to Kings of Leon, and hearing the ringing guitars and affected vocals that power ‘Picking Petals’ its not hard to hear why. The vocal has a defiant Glaswegian twang that should actually make them more akin to Twin Atlantic, but there’s a strange power in the voice itself that isn’t a million miles away from a Kings of Leon hit – for better or worse. Apply that to a riff that draws a little from ‘Generation Terrorists’ era Manics, and it makes it obvious why these guys have already been a hit with the “BBC Introducing” crowd. This track’s shout-along chorus has indie-rock hit written all over it; it’s very much the kind of thing that sounds even better when played back at volume.

Equally retro but a little noisier, ‘Landlubber’ by multi-instrumentalist Lucky Thief takes the force of classic sounding grunge and applies that heavy sound to something closer to shoegaze, with a wall of ringing guitars lending extra weight. There are strange melodies within the track too, since a very relaxed vocal adds something unexpectedly indie-ish as it waves in and out of a brilliant wall of sound. If this is an indicator of the proposed album due for release later in 2023, alternative rock fans are in for a treat.

Deer Tick, a fantastic rock band with Americana undertones, are back with a new album in June. In the meantime, they’ve recently released a single, ‘Once In A Lifetime’ which has echoes of old BoDeans tunes via its twangy vocal, whilst retro guitar sounds and a touch of accordion bring out the rootsiness of a superb pop tune. Produced by Flaming Lips man Dave Fridmann, this is one of the catchiest singles you’ll hear this year…

Looking for something more intense? Lenax has you covered. On their April ’23 digital single ‘Inner Dimension’, the one-man black metal project from Nashville whips up hard, mechanised beats, buzzsaw guitars and a rough vocal that creates a track that occasionally sounds like a Tom Araya impersonator fronting some semi-industrial black metal chaos. It won’t be for everyone, but with just the right balance of aggression and accessibility, it’ll be the kind of showcase that extreme metal buffs will find interesting.

Musical fashions come and go, but there are still punk bands in the US clinging on to the folk punk sub-genre, and Brave The Sea are a little more aggressive than most. As their name suggests, rather than taking folk punk down the Dropkick Murphys street punk route, ‘Frozen’ draws more from the angry sea shanty. Naturally, that means there are parts of the quieter melody that take influence from Tom Waits (its main reason for inclusion here), but the noisier elements still entertain. The way the band blends punk, metal, and kind of old seadog folk won’t be for everyone, but those who like it will love it.

UK rockers Dirty Mitts bill themselves as “the best band you’ve never heard of”, but the massive riffs during ‘You Better Run (Villains Theme)’ ensure that’s about to change. The bulk of the track takes the dirty, retro hard rock sounds of bands like Bad Touch and Big River, and adds a slightly more metallic crunch. The groove is a simple and familiar one, delivered with a massively crunchy production that brings out the best in the guitar sound. There are times when the vocal gets a little too big, but in some ways, that suits the overblown nature of the song itself, and by the time the band breaks into a faster riff for a big finish, there’s little doubt that this is a track that’ll make an impression.

May 2023