Tag: Eurosonic Nooderslag

New Video: JOVM Mainstays Belau Teams Up with Akacia on The Dreamy and Atmospheric “Dreamstate”

With the release of their debut single “Island of Promise,” the Budapest-based electronic music duo and JOVM mainstays  Belau — Peter Kedves and Buzas Krisztian — quickly exploded into their homeland’s scenes while establishing bouyant, summery, dance floor friendly sound designed to evoke “cheerful places, filled with sunshine, where one can relax, unwind and find peace and harmony,” the duo explain.

“Island of Promise” landed at #1 on Deezer Hungary, one of the country’s largest string services and reventually amassed over 500,000 streams. The song was featured in the HBO Hungary series Aranyélet. And adding to a growing profile, “Island of Promise” was part of an international Pepsi ad campaign shown in 33 countries.

The Budapest-based duo’s full-length debut, 2016’s The Odyssey was nominated for and won a a Hungarian Grammy for Best Electronic Music Album. They supported the album with an intense, international touring schedule: 120 shows in 19 countries with a run across global festival circuit, which included stops at Eurosonic, SzigetReeperbahnUntold, and SXSW.

After the release of The Odyssey, Belau released a series of remixes of tracks off their debut. Their sophomore album, 2019’s Colourwave featured:

  • Breath,” a sultry, dance floor friendly collaboration with Sophie Lindinger centered around glitchy beats and a sinuous yet anthemic hook
  • The Massive Attack-like “Natural Pool
  • Rapture,” a collaboration with Blue Foundation‘s Kirstine Stubbe Teglbjærg centered around a trip hop-inspired production featuring shimming synth arpeggios, wobbling low end and Stubbe Teglbjærg’s sultry vocals
  • Essence,” a collaboration with Sophie Barker that features Barker’s sultry vocals gliding over a shimmering production centered around looping, reverb-drenched guitar shimmering synths, skittering beats and an enormous hook that brought Third-era Portishead and Octo Octa to mind – but a with a brooding air.

During the height of the pandemic, the duo teamed up with Sexto Sentido for  “Luz,” a decided change in sonic direction that was a blend of traditional Afro-Cuban folk music and modern electronica paired with lyrics sung in Yoruba and Spanish. To my ears, “Luz” reminded me of JOVM mainstays Ibeyi. And according to the band, the song, which was included as part of Colourwave DLX album was a spiritual journey for the duo.

The Colourwave DLX album also featured an Ohxalá remix of “Breath” feat. Sophie Lindinger that retained Lindinger’s sultry vocal and paired with a dub-leaning house production that gave the song a completely different feel: a bracing chilliness that brought Octo Octa’s Between Both Selves to mind.

Belau’s first single of the year, “Dreamstate” features Aussie pop vocalist Akacia, who has amassed over 50 million streams across the different streaming platforms. “Dreamstate” pairs the Aussie vocalist’s sultry and expressive vocals with an atmospheric R&B production featuring skittering reverb-drenched beats, a reverb-drenched guitar solo, glistening synth arpeggios to a create a song that evokes a half-remembered and feverish dream.

“The history of transfiguration is deeply rooted in our culture, but for most of us, the grace we are possibly able to live towards ourselves is distant, mystical and looks impossible to have access to in this profane world,” the Hungarian JOVM mainstays say in press notes. “Although this road, on the other hand, is available for everyone, if you walk through it, it feels like an actual ‘dreamstate.’ The song tells the story of a life beyond our own limits, a shift from stagnation to progress, a way out of our own dread. A man who is much wiser than us once claimed that only if such an internal process takes place in the individual hearts – and then, of course, outwards – is the way to bring eternal peace to the societies of the world. And there is certainly nothing else that Belau could support even more in these increasing dynamics of the world. We are all made out of gold.”

The accompanying video was filmed in Malta and follows a woman as she explores and wanders around the Mediterranean island nation. Through the use of prism and kaleidoscopic filters, the gorgeous surroundings are given a dream-like quality.

“We made a video for ‘Dreamstate’ in Malta with our good friend. Spent four days on these beautiful islands, at daytime we discovered the breathtaking landscapes at the evening we played some live shows, such good memories” the members of Belau recall.

The duo are currently working on their third album — and are touring across Europe, including some festival dates.

Lyric Video: Athenian Artist Theodore Shares Expansive, Shoegazer-like “Frame of Reference”

Initially schooled in piano and traditional Greek folk music, before heading to London to study Music Composition, the critically applauded Athens, Greece-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and composer, Theodore frequently meshes classically inspired compositions, electronic production and rock arrangements to create a cinematic sound and approach that nods at psych rock, prog rock and experimental rock. And in some way, it shouldn’t be surprising that the critically applauded Athenian artist has publicly cited Sigur RosRadioheadPink FloydManos HadjidakisVangelis PapathanasiouNils FrahmThe NationalOlafur Arnalds and Max Richter as being major influences on his work and sound. 

The Athens-based artist performed his sophomore album It Is But It’s Not at London’s Abbey Road Studio 2 and the live footage of that session amassed over two million YouTube views. Building upon a rapidly growing profile, Theodore and his backing band played sets across the global festival circuit, including Reeperhbahn FestivalEurosonic NooderslagRelease Festival, New Colossus and  SXSW.

Adding to a growing profile, he also opened for Sigur Ros and DIIV, and has received praise from a number of major outlets including Clash MagazineMusic WeekTsugiFGUK, Gaffa and Szene, as well as airplay from BBC Radio 6 Music’s Lauren Laverne.

As a composer, Theodore has written the scores for Matina Megla’s Windo and Vladan Nikolic’s Bourek. He was also commissioned to write a new, live score for Buster Keaton’s classic silent comedy The Cameraman, which was performed by the acclaimed Greek artist and his band during a screening at the Temple of Zeus. (Seriously, how cool is that?)

Theodore’s third album, 2018’s Inner Dynamics thematically found the Greek artist looking inward to examine the dichotomies — and dualities — of his identity to seek new, creative potential. “On It Is But It’s Not, I tried to explore how the opposite elements in the universe interact, how they fight and how without the one you can’t have the other.” Theodore says, adding, “For Inner Dynamics, I was trying to express my urge to connect the conscious and subconscious part of myself so I can be creative. It’s an understanding that humans are not just one thing, and they shouldn’t try to hide certain elements of their personality because society likes to put labels of who we are. It’s the different sides of my self that makes who I am.” 

The Athens-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and composer’s fourth album, The Voyage is slated for a March 13, 2022 release through United We Fly. The Voyage is a concept album that takes the listener on a journey through space while examining and reflection on human evolution.

The album’s latest single “Frame of Reference” is a slow-burning and expansive song that begins with a lengthy introduction featuring atmospheric synths and slowly builds up into a massive, orchestral swelling with swirling, shoegazer-like guitars and increasingly forceful drumming. The two distinct sections are held together by Theodore’s yearning vocals.

“Frame of Reference” is inspired by a dream Theodore had in which he was looking back on how charmingly blue Earth was, as he was floating away in outer space. The song as he explains is about how the things we don’t really appreciate in our daily lives can often appear beautiful from a distant point of view.

Fittingly, “Frame Of Reference” is accompanied by a space imagery themed, official lyric video, which helps set the overall mood for the Athenian artist’s forthcoming album.

“This lyric video is a space journey. From Earth to the planets of our solar system, to distant galaxies and interstellar transitions,” Danai Nielsen, the video’s director explains in press notes. “It follows the emotion and intensity of the song, trying to communicate and engage the emotion that Theodore conveys musically into moving images. It has a strong element of nostalgia and exploration. We are moving away from the Earth, our safe base and home, without a clear destination. We are just floating in this infinitely beautiful space.”

Formed back in 2020, Rotterdam-based indie rock outfit Elephant spent the better part of that year throwing themselves fully into songwriting, spending much of their free time at their greenhouse studio, just outside of town.

Early last year, the Rotterdam-based outfit released their debut EP. The material, which was centered around beautiful melodies, subtle grooves and sobering lyrics caught the attention of journalists nationally including pop journalist Leo Blokhuis. Several EP songs were playlisted on Amazing Radio with “Midnight in Manhattan” landing at #12 on the Verrukkelijke 15 Dutch National Radio Chart. They capped off a big 2021 by signing to Dutch label Excelsior Recordings, who will release their Pablo van de Poel-produced full-length debut Big Thing later this year.

The rising Dutch band started off 2022 with the release of the critically applauded single “Calling” and an an attention grabbing appearance at Eurosonic Nooderslag. Continuing upon that momentum, the members of Elephant recently released Big Thing‘s second and latest single, the slow-burning, “Medicine.” Centered around a trippy, 70s rock meets jam band like groove, glistening and twangy guitars, and easy-going vocals, “Medicine” manages to be simultaneously sunny and melancholy, evoking clouds passing in front of the sun.

“‘Medicine’ is about finding a remedy for negativity and cynicism, whether it is through love, music, or of course another shot of the vaccine,” the band explains.

With the release of their debut single “Island of Promise,” the Budapest-based electronic music production and artist duo  Belau — Peter Kedves and Buzas Krisztian — quickly exploded into their homeland’s scene for establishing a buoyant, summery and dance floor friendly sound that according to the band meant to evoke “cheerful places, filled with sunshine, where one can relax, unwind and find peace and harmony.” Since its release, “Island of Promise” landed at #1 on Deezer Hungary, one of the country’s largest string services, amassed over 500,000 streams, was featured in the HBO Hungary series Aranyélet, and in an international  Pepsi ad campaign shown in 33 countries.

Belau’s full-length debut, 2016’s The Odyssey won a Hungarian Grammy for Best Electronic Music Album. The duo supported the album with an intense touring schedule — 120 shows in 19 countries with stops across the international festival circuit with sets at Eurosonic, SzigetReeperbahnUntold, and SXSW. After The Odyssey, the JOVM mainstays released a series of remixes of The Odyssey tracks, which they followed up with their sophomore album, 2019’s Colourwave featured a number of singles I’ve written about, including:

  • Breath,” a sultry, dance floor friendly collaboration with Sophie Lindinger centered around glitchy beats and a sinuous yet anthemic hook
  • The Massive Attack-like “Natural Pool.”
  • Rapture,” a collaboration with Blue Foundation‘s Kirstine Stubbe Teglbjærg centered around a trip hop-inspired production featuring shimming synth arpeggios, wobbling low end and Stubbe Teglbjærg’s sultry vocals. 
  • Essence,” a collaboration with Sophie Barker that features Barker’s sultry vocals gliding over a shimmering production centered around looping, reverb-drenched guitar shimmering synths, skittering beats and an enormous hook that brought Third-era Portishead and Octo Octa to mind  – but a with a brooding air.

Although the duo haven’t been able to tour as a result of the pandemic, they’ve been busy: earlier this year, they released “Luz,” a one-off single with Sexto Sentido that was decided sonic departure for the duo: the single reminded me quite a bit of fellow JOVM mainstays Ibeyi. Interestingly, as the duo explained in press notes, “’Luz’ is kind of a bridge to our future album; it’s a bit different from our earlier releases.,” the Budapest-based JOVM mainstays explain. “This single is a harmonic blend of traditional Afro-Cuban folk music and modern electronica, the lyrics in yoruba and spanish. This song is a spiritual journey for us, it will be the part of Colourwave DLX album with some remixes, reimagined versions and live sessions in April.

For Colourwave DLX‘s latest single, the Budapest-based JOVM mainstays recruited Ohxalá to remix album single “Breath” with Sophie Lindinger. Interestingly, the Ohxalá remix meshes dub and house music by retaining Lindinger’s sultry vocals paired with a chopped up hook, skittering beats and shimmering synths,. Interestingly enough, the remix gives the song a subtle yet completely different feel: in this case, the Oxhalá remix possesses a bracing chilliness that reminds me quite a bit of Octo Octa’s Between Both Selves.

“‘Breath’ was one of the first single from the album and also one of our favourites. We had some nostalgic feelings about that era, for example the day when we got the final master, that was the first time when we ever met with Sophie,” the Budapest-based JOVM mainstays recall. “Fun fact it was in Texas, where we played at SXSW. After the success of the song, we thought it would be great to have an alternative version, and asked Ohxalá to make a remix. We love their style because they blend traditional folk music with modern electronica, and they made a unique song which also has a new mood.”

Athens-born, Barcelona-based singer/songwriter, classically trained pianist and visual artist Evripdis Sabatis is the creative mastermind behind the solo recording project Evripidis and His Tragedies. The project, which finds the Athens-born, Barcelona-based multimedia artist crafting devastatingly confessional, self-deprecating and often darkly humorous pop songs centered around a queer sensibility can trace its origins back to 2004. When Sabatis relocated to Barcelona, the Greek-born multimedia artist started playing solo sets, accompanying himself on piano in small local bars before becoming a fixture in the local underground scene as a performer, DJ and independent promoter.

Since 2004, Sabatis has been rather busy. He has released four albums 2007’s self-titled debut, 2011’s A Healthy Dose of Pain, 2016’s Futile Games in Space and Time, 2019’s Mia Triti stin Cantina and an EP . . . And It Was Good While It Lasted Baby while also writing scores for short films. Those releases were primarily melancholy, piano-driven indie pop with a joyous beat, unconventional song structures, lush chord progressions and vocal harmonies that found Sabatis collaborating with an eclectic and diverse array of local and international artists, including Sarah P., The Magnetic Fields‘ LD Beghtol, and fellow Greek artist Nalyssa Green.

Sabatis has opened for internationally acclaimed artists like John Grant, Jens Lekman, Peter Bjorn and John and Arab Strap. Adding to a growing profile, he has toured internationally, playing shows in Spain, the UK, Germany, France, the US, Portugal, The Netherlands and his native Greece. The Greek multimedia artist has also made the rounds of the international festival circuit making stops at Primavera Sound Festival, FIB Festival, Indietracks, Eurosonic Nooderslag and Synch Festival.

The Athens-born, Barcelona-based multimedia artist’s fifth album Neos Kosmos reportedly finds Sabatis crating material that goes in a much more decidedly straightforward and sparse synth-driven direction with lyrics written and sung in English, Spanish and Greek while still displaying his immense love of Doo Pop, 60s girls groups, New Wave, indie pop and bedroom pop. The album’s latest single “Bitter,” which features guest vocals from The Ballet‘s Greg is a decidedly 80s inspired synth pop confection featuring shimmering synth arpeggios, a propulsive motorik groove, and a razor sharp yet infectious hook. Interestingly, “Bitter” reveals a songwriter, who has an uncanny ability to write a song that’s centered around complex and contradictory emotions: through heartfelt and earnest songwriting dripping with a bit of campy sarcasm, the song points out the fact that that love — and the search for love — can be fleeting, capricious, embittering and exhausting. And yet, love is so necessary that you can’t quite give up on it either.

“I wanted to convey a little bit of the feeling that The Smiths‘ songs gave me when I was younger — this mixture of romanticism, cynicism, and humor that is kind of camp, but also deeply heartfelt.,” Sabatis explains in press notes. “I am, after all, bitter and hopeful, grumpy and funny, all together at the same time, and I wanted to connect with those who feel these strong contradictions. I invited Greg to sing with me because I imagined an encounter of two like-minded souls who never give up on love. “

Starting her lengthy career as a member of acclaimed breakbeat outfit The Bombazines, Porto, Portugal-born and based-vocalist and JOVM mainstay Marta Ren has kept herself very busy: after a two-record stint with The Bombazines, Ren contributed her vocals to a number of nationally known acts. Over the past couple of years, Ren, who has long been inspired by 60s funk and soul, has received national and international attention with The Groovelets, releasing 2016’s full-length debut Stop Look Listen to airplay from BBC Radio 6′Craig Charles and Radio France‘s Francis Viel, as well as praise from this site and others.

As a result of a rapidly growing profile, Marta Ren and The Groovelets played sets across the European festival circuit, including stops at Trans Musicales FestivalSziget FestivalEurosonic Nooderslag and Mostly Jazz Funk and Soul Festival. But since then, Ren decided to go solo, further establishing what she has dubbed “Funk & Roll,” while uncompromisingly asserting her own destiny.

Last year, Ren collaborated with Matosinhos Jazz Orchestra on re-interpreted and re-worekd versions songs off her critically applauded debut with The Groovelets, the psych soul barnburner “Worth It” and beloved classics from the American Songbook. The collaboration was so fruitful that it continued with Ren performing with Matosinhos Jazz Orchestra at this year’s Avant Festival, which was aired nationally on Antena3/RTP in her native Portugal. That live set included Ren’s latest single “22:22.”

Centered around a propulsive groove, wah wah pedaled guitar, an enormous horn line and Ren’s self-assured, take-no-prisoners and take-no-bullshit delivery, “22;22” sounds as though it owes a sonic debt to James Brown — in particular The Payback-era James Brown. Thematically, the song finds Ren’s narrator referencing the continuous need to be honest struggling with the need to listen to herself while maneuvering the challenges and pitfalls of pleasing others, who may not be easily pleased.

With the release of their debut EP, 2016’s More Escher and Random Notes, the rising Helsinki, Finland-based indie act The Holy — Eetu Henrik Iivari (vocals, guitar), Pyry Peltonen (guitar), Laura Kangasniemi (bass), Mikko Maijala (drums) and Eero Jääskeläinen (drums) quickly emerged into the Nordic music scene, quickly developing a reputation for an enormous and rousingly anthemic sound that has drawn comparisons to Bruce Springsteen and Peter Gabriel with Krautrock influences.

Initially cutting their teeth in Helsinki’s small venue circuit, the members of The Holy have taken an explosive and passionate live show to their homeland’s national festival circuit, playing sets at Flow FestivalRuisrockProvinssirock, Iloasarirock and Lost In Music among others. Building upon a rapidly growing profile, the members of the Helsinki-based quintet released their full-length debut Daughter last year. The album, which thematically touched upon how the 1990s Finnish economic recession impacted this current generation of its young people was a game-charger for the band, as it the album received praise across both Finland and Europe, eventually garnering a Finnish Grammy (EMMA) Critics’ Choice nomination.

The Holy supported the album with a busy touring schedule across Sweden and the Europe that included the continent’s festival circuit with stops at Eurosonic NooderslagIceland AirwavesReeperbahn Festival, Where Is The Music, JaJaJa Music LondonBerlin, and Vienna. Additionally, while they were touring, German/French TV Arte filmed the band’s set at last year’s Flow Festival in cooperation with Finland’s YLE — and KEXP filmed their Iceland Airwaves set.

Originally scheduled for release this spring and now slated for a November 6, 2020 release through Playground Music, the rising Finnish act’s highly-anticipated sophomore album Mono Freedom is a semi-utopian sci-fi tale, inspired by Alan Weisman’s The World Without Us, which explores a number of scenarios of what would happen to Earth if humans were to suddenly disappear. Set in the somewhat distant future on a dying Earth, the planet’s last humans decide to gather their things, build a rocket and travel to the nearest black hole. They know that there is probably nothing out there but it’s one of humanity’s last desperate ideas and last hopes. In the realm of this world, this is generally seen as a positive, not as an absurdly hopeless, dystopian vision.

“During our Daughter tour, I read the science book, The World Without Usby Alan Weisman, and I got inspired and sad at the same time. It seems that humans just took a leap in the evolution progress a million years ago and have been fucking things up since,” The Holy’s Eetu Henrik Iivari explains in press notes. “I started to play with an idea of a space odyssey of the last people on earth, eventually building a rocket and flying into the nearest black hole. And they just don’t make it. They are too dumb to make it. And that’s it. And after a few hundred years, Mother Earth doesn’t even remember it was once occupied by humans.

“And this eventually got me thinking about the Western way of life and the idea of freedom. How one-way, single-minded and boxed-in it is. When you wake up in a modern western city — there is almost nothing you can do that doesn’t rip somebody. It’s late modern capitalism, a jail built on the grounds of believing that you have a choice. And that you make a choice. But most of it is already aimed towards consumerism. We just like to think that we find things by ourselves, but most of it is given. And it’s just so frustrating. To do the right thing from one day to another and navigate in the middle of all this evil around us. 

[But even though the theme is not the lightest in the world, I wanted the album to mirror hope and to be empowering. A friend for people having similar thoughts.”

Earlier this year, the rising Finnish act released a double single, “No Trial In The Dark” and “Twilight Of The Idiots.” “Twilight of the Idiots” is a rousingly anthemic song that immediately brings s A Rush of Blood to the Head-era Coldplay, Peter Gabriel and The Unforgettable Fire  U2 to mind through a combination of earnest emotionality and ambitious songwriting. “No Trial In The Dark” continues in a similar vein but while being much more percussive and cinematic. “I wrote ‘Twilight Of The Idiots,’ ‘Swim,’ ‘The Rocket Song’ and ‘No Trial In The Dark’ very close to each other and we recorded those songs in the same sessions,” Iivari recalls in press notes. “After that I knew what other songs should be on this album and the narrative started to be clear. We followed that path and never turned back.” 

“I Don’t Know,'” Mono Freedom‘s third and latest single continues a run of rousingly anthemic and arena friendly material, centered around deeply earnest songwriting and breakneck yet passionate playing. While sonically, the track brings early U2 to mind — particularly Boy and October — thanks to angular, reverb-drenched guitar chords, forceful and dramatic drumming and Ivari’s plaintive vocals, the song comes from a deeply personal and lived-in place:

“This song is basically about being bipolar. At least on some level. I have no diagnosis and I might not be the right person to talk about it, ” Ivari says “but I’ve been struggling the most part of my life with heavy mania vs. depression and it has taken a huge toll on a lot of things. I have found a way to live with it and function in society nowadays, but it still takes a lot of work every day. It also gives a lot though, being in the deep end of mania is like a drug from the future and I do get a lot of things done. But it’s also super hard to keep that level and it brings you down really really low when you just can’t. 

“I learned from a silly love themed tv show that it’s good to talk about it. To give the people around you some knowledge about it and tools to work with you. So I ended up writing this song and tried to open it slowly. The tune is pretty uplifting and I wanted it to be light and kind of funny, because the last thing I want is to add a shadow of darkness and depression over the matter and keep repeating the pattern of adding shame on this kind of stuff. That it is some mystic dark depressive thing etc. It is just a thing. We all have our things.”

New Audio: Hungarian JOVM Mainstays Belau Team Up with Sophie Barker on a Sultry and Brooding New Single

Over the past two years or so, I’ve written quite a bit about the the Budapest, Hungary-based electronic music production and artist duo Belau — Peter Kedves and Buzas Krisztian — and as you may recall, with the release of their debut single “Island of Promise,” the Hungarian duo quickly exploded into the national scene for a buoyant, summery and dance floor friendly sound meant to evoke “cheerful places, filled with sunshine, where one can relax, unwind and find peace and harmony,” as the duo explain in press notes. “Island of Promise” eventually landed #1 on Deezer Hungary, one of the country’s biggest streaming services, and since its release, the track has amassed over 500,000 streams, and was featured in HBO Hungary series Aranyélet, as well as in an international Pepsi ad campaign shown in 33 countries.

The Budapest-based duo’s 2016 full-length debut The Odyssey won a Hungarian Grammy for Best Electronic Music Album — and they supported the album with an intense period of touring that saw them playing 120 shows in 19 countries with stops across the international festival circuit. including Eurosonic, Sziget, Reeperbahn, Untold, and SXSW. Since the release of The Odyssey, the JOVM mainstays released a series of remixes of The Odyssey tracks, and a handful of singles that included “Breath,” a sultry, dance floor friendly collaboration with Sophie Lindinger centered around glitchy beats and a sinuous yet anthemic hook and the Massive Attack-like “Natural Pool.” 

The duo’s highly-anticipated sophomore album Colourwave was released late last month and the album finds the duo furthering and expanding upon the sound that has won them attention internationally: downtempo electronica with moody atmospheric, shimmering synths and thumping 808s.  Last month, I wrote about “Rapture,” a collaboration with Blue Foundation‘s Kirstine Stubbe Teglbjærg centered around a trip hop-inspired production featuring shimming synth arpeggios, wobbling low end and Stubbe Teglbjærg’s sultry vocals. The album’s second single “Essence” continues the duo’s collaboration with female vocalists — this time, Sophie Barker. Much like its immediate predecessor, Barker’s sultry vocals glide over a shimmering production centered around a looped and reverb-drenched guitar, shimmering synths, skittering beats and an enormous hook. Sonically, the song brings Third-era Portishead and Octo Octa to mind  –but a with a brooding and seductive air. 

New Video: Rising Hungarian Electro Pop Duo Belau Releases a Gorgeous and Mind-Bending Visual for Atmospheric “Rapture”

With the release of their first single, “Island of Promise,” the Budapest, Hungary-based electronic music production and artist duo Belau — Peter Kedves and Buzas Krisztian — quickly received attention across their native Hungary for a buoyant, summery and dance floor friendly sound meant to evoke “cheerful places, filled with sunshine, where one can relax, unwind and find peace and harmony,” as the duo explain in press notes. “Island of Promise” eventually landed #1 on Deezer Hungary, one of the country’s biggest streaming services — and since its release, has not only amassed over 500,000 streams, the song was featured in HBO Hungary series Aranyélet and in an international Pepsi ad campaign shown in 33 countries.

Building upon a growing profile, the duo’s 2016 full-length debut The Odyssey won the Hungarian Grammy for Best Electronic Music Album. The duo supported the album with an intense, two year period of touring int hick they played over 120 shows in 19 countries, as well as appearances at Eurosonic,Sziget, Reeperbahn, Untold, and SXSW. Since the release of The Odyssey, the Hungarian electro pop duo have released a series of remixes of material off The Odyssey, as well as handful of singles that included 2018’s “Breath,” a sultry, dance floor friendly collaboration with Sophie Lindinger centered around a slick, dance floor friendly production featuring glitchy beats, and a sinuous yet incredibly anthemic hook — and the Massive Attack-like “Natural Pool.’ 

The Hungarian duo’s sophomore album Colourwave is slated for a May 29, 2020 release, and the album reportedly finds the duo furthering the sound that won them attention both nationally and internationally, so listeners should expect more chilled out material centered around shimmering synths, 808s and chilled beats. The album’s first single “Rapture” continues a run of  downtempo electronica and trip hop -like material by the duo, centered around an atmospheric and dreamy production of shimmering synths, twinkling percussion, wobbling low end and Blue Foundation’s Kirstine Stubbe Teglbjærg contributing sultry yet ethereal vocals 

Inspired by nature’s immense power, “Rapture” as the duo notes was written as a wish to put put an end to forcing things without taking larger signals and patterns into consideration. The song actually expresses a longing to have life unfold in a completely different way — one that’s more free, open, self-loving and enjoyable. 

The recently released video for “Rapture” takes the viewer on a gorgeous and mind-bending journey through the ocean then time and space: the video begins by taking us deep under the sea — but it turns out to be an aquarium in a pet shop. A boy buys a turtle in the aquarium, and decides to set the turtle free. We then follow the turtle on its adventures through the open sea before pulling out to a global and then universal scale. 

Snowapple is an Amsterdam-based, multi-national, multi-ethnic and multidisciplinary ensemble that specializes in a unique sound that frequently combines diverse and eclectic musical influences, including pop, folk, opera and experimental cumbia among others. Visually, the ensemble uses theatrical elements, extravagant costumes paired with provocative thematic concerns to create epic live sets and videos.

The members of the Dutch ensemble have brought their unique and epic live show to the international festival circuit with sets at Eurosonic Nooderlsag, Cervantino, Ollin Kan, Oerol and Larmer Tree — and they’ve made appearances on a number of TV stations around the world, including Canal11, TV Azteca, and Canal22. Adding to a growing international profile, the act has also received airplay on BBC Radio multiple times.

Snowapple is currently working on their new festival set 4 Lunes, the follow-up to the act’s 2019 theater shows Mr. Moon and Project Lucy and to their political program La Llorona — Ser Mujer (The Weeping One — Being a Woman), which raises awareness of femicides in Mexico. But in the meantime, the act’s latest single, the David Ott-produced “Simple Things” is an adaptation of Armando Tejada Gomez‘s and Cesar Isella’s “Las Simples Coasas,” which has been performed by Chavela Vargas, Mercedes Sosa and countless others. Centered around a cinematic, genre-mashing arrangement that’s one part tango, one part chanson and one part Tropicalia, the Dutch act’s rendition evokes smoky cafes, narrow and foggy European streets and the work of David Lynch but imbued with an aching nostalgia. And as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the song takes on a heightened and deeper meaning: there’s a longing for the things, places and experiences we may never get back — with the acknowledgment that there are things we often say goodbye to way too quickly, not noticing how much they meant to us until they’re gone.