Category: New Single

 

Up-and-coming, Watford, UK-born, London-based future soul artist Connie Constance quickly received national attention with the release of her debut EP In The Grass produced by Blue Daisy. The EP which was praised for its dreamy yet beat-driven soundscapes paired with Constance’s earnest songwriting and vocals was championed by Pharrell Williams, who played tracks on his Beats 1 Radio show and several BBC Radio hosts including Annie Mac, Huw Stephens, Mister Jam, Julie Adenuga and Giles Peterson.

Constance’s latest single “Answer,” continues her ongoing collaboration with Blue Daisy — and sonically, the single pairs propulsive and percussive African-inspired beats, shimmering guitar chords and swirling electronics with Constance’s aching and intimately soulful vocals in a confessional and earnest song with a burning, sarcastic edge. As Constance explains in press notes, the song relates to two different people in the world — “one person that knows all the answers for taking all your troubles away,” as well as “a kind of know it all person, like, they already know the answer.”

2016 looks to be a huge year for the British soul artist, as she’s currently working on material for a new effort.

 

British indie rock sensation Escapists can trace their origins to when Simon Glancy (vocals) relocated to London to concentrate on his songwriting, and as soon as he moved he asked the only musician friend he knew to help him record his musical ideas, Oil Court (guitar). Court then quickly recruited his friend, composer Max Perryment to play bass. And as the story goes, the trio spent a week of intensive songwriting sessions before deciding that they had enough musical and creative simpatico to continue collaborating together. Court’s former schoolmate Any Walsh (drums) was recruited to finalize the band’s lineup, and the newly formed quartet began writing and recording material inspired by Arcade Fire, The National and Broken Social Scene.

The quartet’s debut single received airplay from XFM‘s John Kennedy and within that year, they were touring with Imagine Dragons and played sets at Reading and Leeds Festivals. Continuing to build upon the buzz they received nationally, the quartet spent 2013 writing and recording the material that would comprise their 2014 debut, Only Bodies, which was released to critical praise from the blogosphere.

Over the past year or so, the band has reportedly gone through a change in sonic direction with their sound inching towards dance-floor-leaning post-punk. “Pyramid Scheme,” the first single off the band’s Eat You Alive possesses enormous, anthemic hooks, shimmering and angular guitar chords, thundering drumming, sinuous bass lines, and swooningly plaintive vocals. Structurally speaking there are some playful changes in tempo in a song that sounds as though its indebted to the likes of U2, Editors, The Killers, New Order and others.

Certainly, with such an enormous hooks and a dance-friendly sound, I think we’ll be hearing quite a bit from them over the next few months.

 

 

Although members of the Stockholm, Sweden-based psych rock band Caviare Days have split time between Berlin, Germany, Brooklyn and their hometown, the band can trace their origins to when it started as the musical project of siblings and founding members  Lina and Maja Westin. The project expanded to a full-fledged band when the Westins recruited  Timmy Grim (drums), Boris Grubesic (guitar) and Marcus Arborelius (keys, synthesizer bass) to assist in fleshing out the project’s sound. Thanks in part to a collaboration with The Soundtrack of Our Lives’ Ebbot Lundberg, which was released to critical praise across Europe and a Scandinavian tour opening for Lundberg’s band, the Stockholm-based quintet started to receive international attention across both the European Union and here in the States — they’ve appeared on BBC Introducing, toured and recorded in Germany and have received some attention Stateside; in fact, the band has become part of a lengthy list of mainstay artists on JOVM over the past year or so.

The band’s recently released single “More Than One” continues with the songwriting and recording approach of their Like Me EP with material that captures the live sound that they’ve perfected as they’ve toured across Europe — while revealing a band that’s playfully and subtly expanded their sound. Sonically, the new single meshes bluesy and shuffling glam rock guitar chords, anthemic power chord-led hooks and the Westin sisters’ sultry harmonies in a song that sounds as though it’s indebted more to Ziggy Stardust-era David Bowie and to T. Rex than it does to psych rock as the song shuffles and swaggers to its conclusion.

Just from this song, there’s a sense that the Stockholm-based quintet are ready to take over the world — and I fully expect that we’ll be hearing more about them Stateside in the next few months.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With the release of their debut single “Can’t Afford to Lose You,” the Norwegian electro pop duo BLØSH, comprised of Madrid-born, Oslo, Norway-based cellist and vocalist Teresa Bernabé and guitarist Jørgen Berg Svela, an Oslo native, the duo quickly found themselves with an expanding international profile, thanks in part to a breezy and infectious pop-leaning sound. Already, the duo have seen praise and attention from JaJaJa Music, Indie Shuffle and airplay on Amazing Radio.

Building on the buzz that they’ve already received, the duo’s newest single “Give It Away” is “about not taking life — or the situations that life puts you in — too seriously,” as the duo explained in press notes. The song will likely cement the duo’s burgeoning reputation for crafting infectious pop as the song pairs an upbeat melody, punchy bass lines and a looping guitar line with Bernabé’s breezy vocals and soaringly anthemic hooks.  Sonically speaking, the song draws from African music and African music-inspired pop — in particular Paul Simon‘s Graceland, the legendary Ali Farka Touré, and to my ears Afrobeat as the song and its funky and playful melody is built around the looping and angular guitar line. Simply put, the song is crafted and pure pop confection.

 

 

 

 

Comprised of Michael Lemmo (guitar and vocals), Benjamin Borland (bass) and Kenny Cash (drums), the Los Angeles, CA-based alternative rock/indie rock trio LEMMO specialize in radio-friendly and anthemic power chord rock as you’ll hear on their latests single “Alright,” which interestingly enough bears an uncanny resemblance to Lifehouse‘s “Hanging By A Moment” — but with a shimmering bridge that sounds indebted to The Smiths, giving the song enough of an indie rock edge to have been played on 120 Minutes.

 

If you’ve been frequenting JOVM over course of its history, you may recall coming across several posts on Brooklyn-based quintet Super Hi-Fi, who were something of a mainstay act on this site back in 2012. The core members of the band led by Ezra Gale (bass) features Rick Parker (trombone). Jon Lipscomb (guitar) and Madhu Siddappa (drums) can actually trace their origins to a rather unlikely start. Gale, who was a founding member of the acclaimed San Francisco-based Afrobeat act, Aphrodesia had relocated to Brooklyn and was collaborating with Quoc Pham in Sound Liberation Front when Gale was asked to get a band together for Pham and Gale’s then-monthly Afro-Dub Sessions parties in Williamsburg. The parties would pair the live band with several top-name dub producers and DJs including Victor RicePrince Polo, Subatomic Sound System, the Beverley Road All-Stars and others.

With the release of their critically applauded debut effort, Dub to the Bone released through Electric Cowbell Records in 2012, the Brooklyn-based quintet won quite a bit of attention locally and nationally as they’ve played renowned local venues such as the Mercury Lounge, the now-closed Zebulon and Brooklyn Bowl and have opened for nationally known acts including Rubblebucket, Beats Antique and John Brown’s Body. Over the past couple of years, Super Hi-Fi have recorded and released two 45s on Electric Cowbell, a split 7 inch with Ithaca, NY-based act Big Mean Sound Machine through Peace and Rhythm Records and  Yule Analog, Vol 1.,  a dub-inspired take on Christmas standards.

Super Hi-Fi’s soon-to-be released new album Yule Analog, Vol. 2 picks up on where Yule Analog, Vol 1. left off  — with dub-inspired takes on another batch of holiday classics and a holiday-inspired original dub composition. Featuring contributions from renowned trombonist Curtis Fowlkes, best known for his work with The Lounge Lizards, Bill Frisell and Charlie Hunter; Mitch Marus, best known for his work with Donovan, The Dean Ween Group, and Aphrodesia; as well as Adrian Harley and Alex Castle, who collaborate with Gale in the old school groove project, The Get It. And much like their previously recorded effort, Prince Polo took up production duties, recording the material on analog tape and mixed the album using vintage reverb and tape delay units — in the fashion of legendary dub masters King Tubby and Lee “Scratch” Perry.

Yule Analog Vol. 2′s latest single, which I have the unique privilege of premiering here is a trippy, dub rendition of an old time Christmas classic “O Come All Ye Faithful” which features the trombone-led compositions that won the attention of the blogosphere — the trombone gives the song a regal, old-timey feel while the reverb and bass heavy dub pushes the song towards a funky shoegazer territory. It’s a sunny and playful rendition of an extremely familiar song that puts a completely different spin on it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

21 year-old Paris-based, French-Brazilian singer/songwriter, producer and multi-instrumentalist Yndi Ferreira is the creative mastermind behind indie electro pop project Dream Koala, a project that Ferriera started back in 2012. Interestingly, Ferreira developed a reputation of his production style as he quickly became a go-to remixer, remixing the work of Angel Haze, The 1975, BANKS and others — and as an artist, his debut single “We Can’t Be Friends” caught the attention of renowned acts including Fabolous, Doja Cat and the aforementioned BANKS.

Building on an increasing buzz around him, Ferreira released the critically applauded Odyssey EP and Earth. Home. Destroyed. EP which were informed by a variety of Ferreira’s influences including Flying Lotus, My Bloody Valentine, Radiohead, contemporary R&B which gave the material a spectral, shoegazer-like, introspective feel, along the lines of Beacon‘s For Now and The Ways We Separate while thematically exploring Afrofuturism and sci-fi.

Slated for a December 4 release, Ferreira’s soon-to-be released EP Exodus will reportedly continue thematically where the critically acclaimed Earth. Home. Destroyed. left off while cementing his reputation for crafting moody, spectral electro pop that seamlessly meshes elements of contemporary R&B, bass-heavy electronica and soft rock. “Dimension Sleeper,” Exodus‘ first single (and EP opener, by the way) pairs layers of slowly cascading synths, dub-inspired tweeter and woofer rocker bass fed through gentle washes of reverb and skittering drum programming with Ferreira’s plaintive and ethereal vocals in a song that evokes both the sensation of weightlessness and of wisps of smoke curling and rising heavenward before dissipating. And although possessing a retro-futuristic sound that would clearly sound at home in the early 80s, at the core of the song is a delicate and ancient ache that’s haunting and unsettling.

While playing this song I thought of the song’s narrator in a dying spaceship traveling through the cosmos, and the entire time the narrator is haunted by the lingering and inescapable ghost of a departed lover.

 

 

 

 

Up and coming, New Jersey-born pop artist Donna Missal first captured the attention of listeners and the blogosphere with her sultry and bluesy debut single “Keep Lying,” which paired Missal’s soulful, pop belter vocals with buzzing power chords, a propulsive rhythm section and anthemic hooks. Lyrically, the song’s narrator pleads with an unfaithful and deceitful lover to keep the facade of faithfulness so not to ruin her long-held fantasy. Is it cynical? Absolutely. But it evokes a deeply dysfunctional relationship — the sort where lies are just as useful and good as honesty. Somehow, I’ve been there once or twice before . . .

Building upon the buzz that “Keep Lying” has received Massal recorded a sultry and bluesy cover of Drake‘s massive hit “Hotline Bling” that turns up the vulnerable and sensual need of the original, essentially taking Drake’s hit song and confidently making it her own.

 

Check out how Donna Missal’s cover compares to the original.