Sound affects: new music from Saint Sapphire, Beauty Sleep, Runabay and Slomatics

A round-up of new local releases

Beauty Sleep celebrate the release of debut LP Be Kind at Strange Victory Records tomorrow

SONY-affiliated Belfast alt-rockers Saint Sapphire have a new single out at the moment: Rule The World Tonight finds the Belfast trio (drummer Adam, guitarists Sam and Danny) setting the dial to 'chuggy swaggering anthem' before snapping off the knob and duly rocking out in a catchy, crunchy and infectiously thunderous manner.

It's probably the band's best tune to date – though the previously released Pretty Little Animals isn't too far behind – and a savvy selection as the debut release on their new Sony-backed label Ghost Music. Hopefully, both songs feature on the trio's upcoming debut LP, which they'll be previewing live for your consideration at Voodoo in Belfast on June 29.

Tickets and indeed information on all things Saint Sapphire can be had via

Now, is life getting you down? Are you plagued by negative thoughts and/or people? If so, a daily dose of Be Kind, the dreamy and incredibly promising debut album from Belfast trio Beauty Sleep, could do you the world of good.

It's a super summery record that's positively dripping with catchy, groovy retro-synth 'n' processed guitar pop goodness and boy/girl vocals sung life-orientated lyrics about loving yourself and others while calling out fakers when required.

The best tune on the record is possibly/definitely Lies (which really should be styled in all-caps as 'LIES.' for proper effect), a playfully funky number about grappling with the dark, yawning chasm between pretence and reality which plagues our modern presentations of self (or something), though breathy synthpop earworms All We See and Rainbow Ballroom, dancefloor filler On Repeat and the uplifting swirl of the title/climactic track offer strong competition.

Out now on Quiet Arch, Cheylene, Ryan and Aimee have Belfast album launch shows coming up at Strange Victory Records (tomorrow, 2.30pm) and The MAC (June 29) – find out how to get your tickets for the latter at

On the subject of quality debut albums, Belfast indie-folkers Runabay have just put out their first LP: Between the Lines is a hushed and haunting affair packed with moments of string-laced, vocal-harmony-enhanced, trad-tinged melancholic beauty – notably superb singles Blink of An Eye and Symmetry and late album highlights There's Only You and How Long – on which they call to mind the likes of Elbow, The Frames, Badly Drawn Boy, Beta Band, Elliot Smith, Coldplay and fellow countrymen like Arborist and The Lost Brothers.

Runabay's debut album Between The Lines is out now

Basically, it's a must-listen release for fans of quality acoustic guitar-based songwriting: get on it now at

Finally, on a much (MUCH) louder note, be advised that the new Slomatics album, Canyons, is out next week: pre-order now at and expect a review here in the very near future.

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