New music, new artists and Hard Of Hearing FIRSTS.

This week’s discovery issue comes packed to the rafters with new talent.


Firsts is a weekly round up of enthralling new tracks and first features that have occupied the Hard Of Hearing stereo this week. Tracks featured here find their way onto our new music playlist on Spotify, which you can follow below.

Swine Tax

Newcastle’s Swine Tax have unleashed a video for their new single ‘Screensaver’, and it’s an absolute belter of a track. While the track is based around rolling guitar riffs and a bass drive, wonky synths are at play in the chorus alongside deadpan vocals that just make you smile. They fit in beautifully with the current crop of post-punk bands making serious waves in the U.K at the moment.


‘Puppeteering’ comes from a mixed bag of influences, that much is both obvious and hugely interesting. Moments of ELLiS·D’s intimate new single may echo the instrumental hallmarks of Radiohead, QOTSA or even Jeff Buckley, but what is striking over multiple listens of ‘Puppeteering’ is the sheer depth of thought and vocal expression within. There are moments where I feel as though I’m intruding on the personal, inner thoughts of a new age thinker, before being lifted off to something more anxious, riff heavy and primal. Where the heart lies for ELLiS·D I’m sure we’ll find out over multiple releases, but for now lets enjoy the rush of ‘Puppeteering’ in all it’s varied magic.

Youth Sector
‘Real Estate’.

Youth Sector are probably the most exciting indie band from Brighton I’ve heard since The Maccabees. Man, ‘Real Estate’ conjures the key moments of 2000’s indie and doubles down. Lightning-paced electronic pulses, guitar frenzies and a vocal delivery that makes oddball pop experts such as Everything Everything and Dutch Uncles look like school boys again. The band offer more raw energy, experimental textures, modern living and lyrical ingenuity than most.

‘Tall Trees’.

Multiples are a rarity. Their intricate instrumental textures and vocal harmonies I’m sure could touch the darkest soul. Guitars bounce off the edges of a crisp drum structure and playful vocal arrangement bringing ‘Tall Trees’ into ghostly new territory at every turn. The London band’s debut release shows a smart use of contrasting musical and instrumental vision, who knows where the next release could go sonically.

‘Cut to the Chase’.

What do you need to know about New Zealand’s frightening brilliant trio REPAIRS? Following on from their recent single ‘Last Chances’, the Auckland post-punk outfit are back and continue their furious form with ‘Cut to the Chase’. The track sees the band grind out a new atmosphere of knife-edged anxiety, a new industrial soundscape and a love of sludgy bass lines and a guitar sound that could cut glass.

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