With the final throes of Auld Lang Syne still ringing freshly in our ears, it's time to refocus our radars on some fresh new music for your ears. Here are a five songs which have caught our attention so far in 2014. Yes, we do know that some of these tunes originally saw the light of day towards the tail end of 2013 and, well...shut up!
St. Vincent - 'Birth In Reverse'
Taken from St. Vincent, due out February
A supremely enigmatic effort from Annie Clark. If 'Birth In Reverse' is anything to go by her upcoming self-titled fourth studio album (of fifth, if you include her collaboration with David Byrne) is going to be staggeringly bonkers and brilliant, which is the least we'd expect from the pen of Ms. Clark.
Warpaint - 'Biggy'
Taken from Warpaint, due out 20th January
Warpaint caused quite a stir upon the release 2010's The Fool, particularly with the low- fi groover 'Undertow'. Their debut, in my opinion at least, promised more than it delivered but the first listen to 'Biggy' from their selt-titled sophomore record has squarely reignited our lumbering expectations for this band. Stunning stuff.
James Vincent McMorrow - 'Red Dust'
Taken from Post Tropical, due out 10th January
A mesmerising double act of luscious, textured music and McMorrow's heartaching falsetto, 'Red Dust' is one of the highlights from his upcoming second album Post Tropical. Written many moons ago, 'Red Dust' collected, er, dust until the singer was able to adequately locate the right music to accompany it - and locate it he has, as you'll experience when you click the play button above.
Pixies - 'Blue Eyed Hexe'
Taken from EP2, due out NOW
The 21st century resurgence of the Pixies continues with this stormer of a tune taken from their second post-comeback EP, imaginatively titled EP2. This is classic Pixies, sounding not terribly unlike a sister song to 1991's 'U-Mass' at times, but it has everything from which the Pixies made their lofty reputations: Black Francis' screaming vocals, Joey Santiago's off- kilter solos and buzzing amps. And, before you ask, I have absolutely no idea who played bass on this recording.
Angel Olsen - 'Forgiven/Forgotten'
Taken from Burn Your Fire For No Witness, due out February 18th
Having already received Pitchfork's stamp of recognition, Angel Olsen's 'Forgiven/ Forgotten' sees the formerly mostly-acoustic Olsen plug in her guitar and the result is something quite special indeed. This might be my favourite of the five tracks listed here and I implore anyone with a fondness for low-fi, droning rock n' roll to listen in. Oh, and that's her pictured above if you're curious.