5 Songs to Hear This Week: Amyl and the Sniffers, Amaarae, Mount Kimbie

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Amyl and the Sniffers stay ready for adventure. Photo by Zac Bayly

Hey! Did you know that there’s an entire aspect of KCRW music discovery that you might be missing out on? Fear not, because our 5 Songs to Hear This Week newsletter is now a weekly feature on our website. Watch this space for rundowns of the five songs that you need in your life immediately, curated by KCRW Music staff. Don’t want to wait for your latest taste of fresh tunes? Sign up for the Tuesday newsletter here, and have ‘em delivered directly to your inbox.

Amyl and The Sniffers – “U Should Not Be Doing That” 

Absolute rippers out of Australia, Amyl & The Sniffers, are back and bolder than ever with this personal protest track, an “eff-you” to anyone trying to control you with shame. The foursome comes in hot with their signature punk rock sound, vocalist and figurehead Amy Taylor leading the way with her punchy vocals. And the video is a must, as Angelenos and non-Angelenos alike will immediately clock the San Fernando Valley landmark Circus liquor, aka the site of Cher Horowitz’s ruined Alaïa. The iconography only deepens as it becomes the first stop in Amy’s sprawling “I’ll do what I want” joy crawl across LA.

Mandy, Indiana – “Idea is Best”

Among music’s many genres and sub-genres, electronic music is driven by innovation and pushing the boundaries ... of the form, yes, but also of your ability to handle it. So… Can you? Electro-noise outfit Mandy, Indiana dare you to try this multi-stage sonic assault on the senses, a veritable cacophony (in a good way). Not for the faint of heart — or the epileptic — this track is full-on-menacing, thrilling, and about as underground as it gets.

Amaarae – “Angels in Tibet”

Amaarae has a voice like a vocoder. Upon first listen you may be looking for a source that’s animatronic. But the Bronx-born Ghanaian-American artist’s extraordinary and ear-catching voice is all natural, sugar-cane sweet, fluid, and flecked with poignant lyrics. Layered over a West-African inspired drumbeat (plus more percussive details), and punctuated by sensual strings — this sumptuous track and its opulent video will have you soaring. 

Mount Kimbie – “Shipwreck”

Get you a band that can do it all… A big favorite in the UK electronic scene, Mount Kimbie’s gone shoegaze. After earning permanent playlist status with early hits like “Marilyn” and “Blue Train Lines,” featuring enigmatic UK rapper King Krule,  they’re back with a more analog style. Evidenced by the surveillance-video style video — this track’s about keys, skins, riffs, and vocals. Straightforward and delightfully downcast, this moody piece just might be the soul-searcher you’ve been looking for. 

El Mató a un Policía Motorizado – “Slippery People”

Tap into Buenos Aires group El Mató a un Policía Motorizado, known in short as Él Mató, for some super-satisfying indie rock with a juuuust a touch of New Wave. Traffic troubadours will especially appreciate this cool-like-fire Talking Heads cover: The vocals by Santiago, known as “Motorizado" by fans, exist on the edges of the speak-sing realm. You’ll find them ideal for living out your rockstar fantasies en español from inside the secret sound booth that is your Prius. Instruments are on display: hit play for super-clean, expert handling of drums, guitars, and a featured xylophone.