Single Reviews: 6 December 2023: Buddy Junior, David Duffy, The Fourth Wall, Starita, Urhosson

Photo by Nathan Kelly

Buddy Junior - don't wait up


Pain makes the best art. If you agree with that sentiment, then you're likely to appreciate the genesis of "don't wait up", a dark and catchy new single from San Fransican project Buddy Junior. "I wrote and recorded this one on a day that I really wanted to die" reads the solemn press release from Jaybe Lenar, the only member of Buddy Junior to have a hand in the upcoming album Rust from whence this track comes. So it's no surprise "don't wait up" is an exhilarating listen, and there's an immediacy to the writing and production that sums up the anxiety of having to be alive. Industrial drum machines and percussion merge with cascading synths, snarky vocals, and walls of guitar, culminating in a rather cinematic experience; b-movie indie rock with a touch of something special. Rust is out January 2024 on Cherry Dream Records.  

David Duffy - Spire

modern classical 

David Duffy is a composer and multi-instrumentalist who splits his time between his native Cork, Ireland and Barcelona, Spain. His music features a wide array of instrumentation, and the jazz-tinged chilltronica of "Spire", from the recently released album Where The Branches Begin, imbues a deliciously warm and upbeat atmosphere through jovial piano, moody winds, and spluttered beats. Though commercial in its appeal, there's a personalized aspect to the composition, and haughty intentions play well beside more rudimentary and straightforward motifs. Could this track soundtrack an advertisement for an insurance firm? Sure. But it could also play to the more profound moments of life. 

The Fourth Wall - Never A Part

indie rock 

"We'll never be a part of whatever they are" sings Stephen Agustin of Portland-based The Fourth Wall on the new single "Never A Part". It's an emotional moment in a song driven by the desire to express oneself effectively and build deeper connections with those around us. The music has an upbeat and breezy style but is marked by its dramatic intensity, cornucopian instrumentation and melodic clarity. It packs quite a punch for something tender by constitution. "Never A Part" is taken from the upcoming album Return Forever.

Starita - Home 


Mississippi-born songwriter and producer Starita engulfs the listener in a warm riverbed of roaming acoustic guitars, windy electronics, water sounds and layered, highly emotive vocals on their new single "Home". The lyrics are affected beyond full recognition, but they blend with the rising tension nicely and dramatic yelps are harmonised tastefully in the mix. Though the track takes some darker turns musically, and the insistence on going for even higher levels of intensity makes this an ultimately pretty number for people who like emotional adrenaline, and an enticing preview of the upcoming sophomore album Remember

Urhosson - Act

modern classical

Helsinki-based composer and producer Urhosson melds classical sweeps of orchestration and vocalises with restrained flourishes of electronic production on "Act", a beguiling cut from the recently released EP of the same name. Is that a pan-pipe or a dulcimer? There's certainly an acoustic piano there somewhere, as are the silver-screen-ready narrative suggestions and the effective harmonisation of incongruous but copacetic elements; the homogenization of the grandios and the whimsical.