Single reviews

Theme Park – ‘Tonight’ 

The third single from alternative band Theme Park is a fantastic follow up to a great year of music for them. ‘Tonight’ is a sweet electro number, which seems to have a much stronger impact than their previous hits. With a repeating chorus and minimalistic lyrics there is a heavier focus on sound, particularly their experimentation with percussion and drumming to compliment the techno influences. However, what makes this track special, and epitomises their signature style, is the quasi-reggae rhythm. This is a suitably festival-esque tune which promises to be big hit, and is a great teaser for their debut album which comes out later this year. For fans of Bombay Bicycle Club and Darwin Deez, but with a more mellow, 80s vibe, definitely check these guys out. A band to watch out for. ZOE BILES

Suede – ‘Barristers’

Ticking percussion opens the first new Suede song for a decade. Soaring guitars and suitably optimistic lyrics follow on in ‘Barriers’. Speaking of the band’s new album, main man Brett Anderson said: “Barriers isn’t the first single but we are proud of it enough just to chuck it out there… Its pulsing, romantic swell somehow summed up the feel of the album quite nicely.”

This makes it a gleeful return for Britpop this year, with fellow patrons Pulp likewise releasing a single. With entrances from fresh-faced bands like Peace, the scene is worth a watch. Yet Suede’s new release lacks the immediacy and surprise of early work: comedic lyrics coupled with guitar riffs that won’t shake loose. A welcome return for now but their future remains unsure. MARTIN WAUGH

Pulp – ‘After You’

The first new song to be released by Pulp in over a decade, ‘After You’ is a highly promising – and highly idiosyncratic – return to the music scene for the legendary Britpoppers. Aside from the catchy disco-esque guitar and bass work, this song contains some excellent lyrics with ‘From disco to disco / From Safeway to Tesco’ being my personal favourites. Despite being produced by former LCD Sound system frontman James Murphy, ‘After You’ does admittedly sound very ‘nineties’. This is not necessarily a bad thing as the song sees Pulp returning to their roots which propelled them to success in that decade, after their sound grew darker and more experimental with 1998’s ‘This is Hardcore’. With its slightly camp yet beguiling sound and its tongue-in-cheek lyrics about working-class angst, ‘After You’ is an exciting hark back to the golden years of one of Britpop’s most dynamic ensembles. PHILIP WATSON