Tag: singer/songwriter

New Audio: Rapidly Rising Marcus King Releases a 70s Motown-like Bit of Soul

Over the past couple of months, I’ve managed to write a bit about the rapidly rising Greenville, SC-born, Nashville-based singer/songwriter and guitarist, Marcus King. The Greenville-born, Nashville-based King is a fourth generation musician, who has followed in his family’s footsteps by becoming a musician and singer/songwriter of note himself. 

Playing professionally since he was 11, King was discovered after a video of him performing at Norman’s Rare Guitars went viral. Now 23, King  has been performing for the past 15 years, establishing himself as a  world class guitarist, vocalist and highly sought-after session player.

Since 2015, King has been relentlessly touring with his backing band The Marcus King Band — Jack Ryan (drums), Stephen Campbell (bass), Justin Johnson (trumpet, trombone) and Dean Mitchell (sax, still guitar) — playing 140 dates live shows over the course of the past year. Adding to a breakthrough year, King and his backing band have played on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, made his debut at The Grand Ole Opry — and he recently opened for Chris Stapleton during his last US arena tour, playing in front of 17,000 people every night.

Building upon a rapidly rising profile, King’s highly-anticipated, Dan Auerbach-produced full-length debut El Dorado is slated for a January 17, 2020 release through Fantasy Recordings. King’s full-length debut continues on the success of his first collaboration with Auerbach, “How Long,” with the album being co-written with the acclaimed singer/songwriter, guitarist and producer over three days at his Easy Eye Sound studio — and reportedly, the album is a contemporary sonic exploration of classic rock, blues, southern R&B and country soul.

“Marcus is known by so many as a phenom guitar player, and rightfully so,” Dan Auerbach says of his time working with Marcus King. “He’s regularly the best player in the room, hands down. I was equally blown away by the way he can sing — so effortless, so soulful, straight to the heart. He’s a naturally gifted writer too, which was clear right away. Everything for him is so innate — that’s why he can always go right to the heart of a song and connect in a deeper way. He’s really one of a king and I’m proud I got to work alongside him on this record.”

“Wildflowers and Wine,” El Dorado‘s second single was a slow-burning track that was one-part Muscle Shoals soul, one part Southern rock, one-part R&B and one-part classic blues centered around a lush arrangement of twinkling keys, a soulful backing vocal section and a sinuous bass pair line paired with King’s vocals. And while being clearly indebted to 70s AM radio, the song manages to be a carefully crafted and self-assured bit of soulful pop, which manages to belie King’s relative youth while being a perfect vehicle for a his blues-tinged guitar work and his exceptional and effortlessly soulful vocals. “Say You Will,” the album’s third single is a slickly produced, arena rock friendly blues number with an enormous hook, which immediately brought Slowhand-era Eric Clapton and Texas Flood-era Stevie Ray Vaughan to mind. 

“One Day She’s Here” the fourth and latest single off the Greenville-born, Nashville-based singer/songwriter and guitarist’s highly anticipated full-length debut, is a gorgeous and sultry song that sounds deeply indebted to Curtis Mayfield and 70s Motown, complete with a soaring string arrangement, layers of propulsive percussion, shimmering Rhodes piano and guitar,  an enormous hook and King’s effortlessly soulful vocals. Much like its predecessors, El Dorado’s latest single continues a run of remarkably self-assured and crafted material that belie its creators relative youth. But perhaps more important, the album’s material reveals a budding superstar in the making. 

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New Video: JOVM Mainstay Crywolf Releases a Haunting and Eerie Visual for “Adah [Fawn]”

If you’ve been frequenting this site for the past couple of years of its nine-plus year history, you’ve probably come across a post featuring  the Los Angeles, CA-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumetnalist and producer Justin Taylor Phillips — and his acclaimed solo recording project Crywolf. 

Phillips’ latest Crywolf album widow [OBLIVIØN Pt. II] was released earlier this year to critical praise from the likes of The FADER, Alternative Press and idobi Radio. widow [OBLIVIØN Pt. II] finds the Los Angeles-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer further cementing his growing reputation for pushing boundaries in every aspect of his art. The album’s latest single “Adah [Fawn]” is a haunting and gorgeous track, centered around a sparse arrangement featuring strummed acoustic guitar, Philips’ achingly plaintive and tender vocals. 

The recently released video for “Adah [Fawn]” continues the “WIDOW” short film series. The three part video series is built around a central narrative, the series’ videos have been released out of order, perhaps a way to reflect the chaotic, turbulent nature of the short film’s world — and they do so while also being surreal and gorgeously shot visual compliments to their accompanying song. “The series tells the story of a man’s descent into madness,” Phillips writes in a statement. “He loses his mind and, thinking he is being directed by an angelic force, ends up killing the very thing he loves most. When he realizes what he has done, he’s devastated and jumps off a pier to escape. It turns out [in the third video that has yet to be released] that he can’t die, and he is still haunted by the memory of his lover.”

“It’s a metaphor for my own struggle with mental illness, and the tumultuous realities of life as an artist,” Phillips continues. “Pursuing these ethereal and magnificent concepts is so captivating, but can sometimes drive you to the edge of your sanity, and can cause you to hurt the things you love most… whether that is people around you, or parts of yourself. But, as the third act shows, those things are never really gone. They live on and won’t leave until they are accepted and integrated.”

Ollie Trevers is an emerging London-based singer/songwriter and guitarist, who started writing and performing music when he was 14. Like countless other young people, Trevers harbored artistic aspirations from the very beginning.

While studying at Leeds College of Music, Trevers joined a band then known as The Doldrums — they’re now known as Velvit — as the band’s lead singer and rhythm guitarist. The band wound up playing gigs in and around the Leeds area but while earning a masters at ICMP, Trevers decided it was time to spent out into the limelight as a solo artist, writing and recording his solo debut, last year’s Saucy Naughty Rubbish EP, an effort that found the London-based singer/songwriter crafting a sound that drew equally from classic rock and post-punk.

Around the same time, Trevers started to receive film industry work, eventually writing period specific songs for the feature film Funny Cow and publishing music to be used in the feature film Burning MenSince then he was commissioned to write the score and the soundtrack album for the upcoming feature film Cordelia. And after completing his masters, Trevers has begun to refocus his efforts into his solo career, including recruiting a backing band, which has started to play gigs in and around London.

Trevers’ recently released, five song EP Cordelia finds the emerging British singer/songwriter and guitarist expanding upon the sound of his debut, with the new EP’s material inspired by Led Zeppelin, Ella Fitzgerald, Edith Piaf, Tim Buckley, Jeff Buckley, Pink Floyd, Queen, Jimi Hendrix, Joni Mitchell and David Bowie among others. And as a result, the material’s overall sound touches upon punk, alt rock, prog, blues, folk and psych rock. Thematically, the material touches upon heartache, melancholia, catharsis and emotional claustrophobia — and the feelings which often transcend our ability to accurately describe them. Additionally, the material finds the emerging British singer/songwriter and guitarist exploring unrequited love and its causes and effects — depression, addiction, disillusionment and longing.

The EP’s latest single is the oceanic “Can’t Make It Up.” Centered around fuzzy power chords, Trevers plaintive and expressive vocals and an enormous, arena rock friendly hook, the expansive song sonically nods at alt rock, the blues, psych rock, folk and Brit Pop in a way that reminds me of Love Is Here-era Starsailor and The Verve.  “‘Can’t Make It Up’ was written as a result of a  rather turbulent period in my life,” Trevers says in press notes. “I think a lot of people have expressed a similar despondency, and I’m really happy that I managed to find a way to share that in my music . . . especially as I sometimes find it too hard to write about things that are personal.”

 

Singer/songwriter and guitarist Laura Weinbach is the Hollywood Hills, Los Angeles-born daughter of a horror filmmaker and the sister of a cult comedian. As a child Weinbach grew up in a household and community that proudly embraced eccentricity: her next door neighbors were circus contortionists with emus and fang-toothed monkeys as pets — and some of her favorite childhood activities included snail hunting and spying on celebrity neighbors like Slash, Ice-T and Mark Linn-Baker, the guy who played Larry on Perfect Strangers. Unsurprisingly, Weinbach’s upbringing manages to be present throughout her work in Foxtails Brigade — from the lyrical imagery, to the hand-drawn artwork and the sophomoric Insstagram cartoons she posts.

Since their formation, the project has released three full-length albums — 2011’s full-length debut The Bread and the Bait, released through Antenna Farm Records; 2012’s sophomore effort Time Is Passed, released through DIY Records; and 2016’s self-titled album released through OIM Records. Their previously released material was centered by hazy chamber folk melodies and spectral strings with songs reaching inward – but interestingly, Foxtails Brigade’s Jeff Saltzman-produced third album found the Bay Area-based act completely reinventing their sound. The material on that album featured peculiar percussion and synths paired with Weinbach’s guitar work with the band’s sound exploding outward in all directions. Additionally, the band focuses on crafting material with a directness and clarity without sacrificing the intricacy of their previously released work.

Foxtails Brigade support the release of their third album with touring across the Pacific Northwest, Southern California, the Midwest and South, as well as a tours opening for Emily Jane White across the East Coast, France and the rest of the European Union. Live, the Bay Area-based act’s live show is a meshing of junkyard beats, warped orchestral sonics, Weinbach’s gorgeous vocals and classically trained guitar work paired with a rotating cast of collaborators, who have played with Bright Eyes, Van Dyke Parks and John Cale.

According the band’s website, they’re currently working on their fourth album but in the meantime, Foxtails Brigade released a split 7 inch single with the Colorado-based act Kramies. The Bay Area-based act’s contribution to that split 7 inch is the contemplative “On The Other Side.” Centered around a shimmering and atmospheric arrangement of looping, classically-inspired guitar, twinkling keys and Weinbach’s gorgeous vocals, the song may be the most straightforward folk song they’ve released in some time — but while evoking the wintry chill of a Northeastern winter night.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The band’s live show is a clockwork of junkyard beats, warped orchestral sonics, and Laura’s trademark voice and classical guitar intricacies with an A-List ensemble featuring performing members of Bright Eyes, Van Dyke Parks, and John Kale.  The songs tackle subjects of substitute teaching in the Oakland and LA public school scenes, steak appreciation, and general unfairness awareness with a warped pop sensibility akin to influences like St. Vincent, Joanna Newsom, The Smiths, and Spoon.

 

LeRiche is an emerging Port aux Basques, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada-based indie pop singer/songwriter. The Newfoundland and Labrador-based singer/songwriter has long had a passion for music — one that can be traced to when he stretched his fingers out on a six-string guitar when he was baby. Since then he has pushed himself to explore musically and creatively, picking up piano, bass and drums. eventually discovering an interest and passion for songwriting.

The emerging Port aux Basques, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada-based earned  diplomas in Music Industry and Performance and Recording Arts from the College of the North Atlantic. With close to a decade of playing gigs across the province, LeRiche began to be recognized provincially, winning the province’s Battle of the Bands with a previous band — and later even internationally, when he was chosen to represent Canada at the 2012 Global Village in Qatar.

Interestingly, the Newfoundland and Labrador-based singer/songwriter’s latest single is the slickly produced and breezy, Tame Impala-like confection “Connected.” Centered around a bouncy and propulsive rhythm, shimmering guitars, the rising Canadian artist’s plaintive vocals and an enormous hook. And while revealing an ambitious songwriter who can craft a slick, hook driven bop, the song as LeRiche told me via email, “is a song about communication, or lack thereof.”

“In many ways as a society we have never been more together: closer than ever. Access to the internet creates many opportunities and advantages, but can also have a negative side,” the Newfoundland and Labrador-based artist continues. “Today, in many normal situations we find ourselves feeling disconnected from those around us, because we’ve hired a middle man to help us communicate.Sometimes it just gets in the way of genuine connection.

“Put down your phone. Stay connected to what really matters.”

 

LeRiche begins 2020 with a two week tour across Germany. Check out the tour dates below.

 

2020 Germany Tour

09.01.20 – Husum – Bahnhofsbistro

10.01.20 – Sylt – Friends Bistro

11.01.20 – Stralsund – Buehne Blechwerk

13.01.20 – Luebeck – Tonfink

14.01.20 – Hamburg – Freundlich & Kompetent

15.01.20 – Mittweida – Studentenclub

16.01.20 – Oberhausen – Druckluft

17.01.20 – Dormagen – Pink

18.01.20 – Bielefeld – Cafe Künstlerei

21.01.20 – Nürnberg  – Ludwigs

22.01.20 – Stuttgart – Cafe Galao

23.01.20 – Muenchen – Glockenbachwerkstatt

24.01.20 – Bayreuth – Schokofabrik

25.01.20 – Weilburg – Cozy

26.01.20 – Chemnitz – Kaffeesatz

28.01.20 – Hannover – Cafe Glocksee

New Video/New Audio: Two from Emerging San Francisco-based Indie Pop Artist ZOLA

With the release of her debut EP Everything I Know, an effort that has amassed over 500,000 streams, the San Francisco-based pop artist ZOLA quickly emerged into both the local and national scene for a sound and approach that effortlessly and seamlessly meshes genres, styles and languages.

Building upon a growing profile, the emerging San Francisco-based artist’s latest single, the Tim Vickers-produced “Crystal Floors” is a genre–blurring David Lynch-like fever dream as the track is centered around a breezy, Bossa nova rhythms, shimmering synths, a sinuous hook, and Zola’s alluring jazz-inspired vocals singing lyrics in English and French.

The recently released Andy Omvik-produced video for “Crystal Floors” possesses a surreal and dream-like logic as it features the rapidly rising singer/songwriter, a beautiful chestnut colored horse, an old fashioned telephone and a disco ball. 

Along with the release of the video for “Crystal Floors,” the San Francisco-based pop artist released “Telephone,” the second single off her soon-to-be released sophomore EP, an effort slated for a January 2020 release. While continuing a run of bilingual songs, which feature lyrics sung in English and French, “Telephone” is a straightforward bit of soulful pop, centered around a swaggering arrangement of twinkling keys, a sinuous bass line, boom bap-like beats and Zola’s jazz-inspired delivery. Both tracks reveal a young artist, who’s not only self-assured beyond her years, but has one of the most unique voices in contemporary indie pop. 

Matthew Messore is an Orlando, FL-born and-based singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. best known as the creative mastermind behind the rapidly rising bedroom recording project Cathedral Bells. Now, as you may recall since the release of last year’s breakthrough self-titled EP, an effort which received support from David Dean Burkhart and praise from The Line of Best Fit, Messore has released a handful of singles from his highly-anticipated Cathedral Bells full-length debut, Velvet Spirit, which will be released through Good Eye Records on March 6, 2020.

The album’s third and latest single “Ephemeral” continues a run of material centered around ethereal vocals., shimmering and reverb-drenched guitars, propulsive drum machine, a motorik-like groove and an infectious radio-friendly hook. And while clearly indebted to 4AD Records glorious heyday, The Cure, The Sisters of Mercy, Chain of Flowers and others, the song is a swooning and urgent fever dream.

 

 

 

Over the past 18 months or so I’ve written quite a bit about the Newcastle, UK-born and-based singer/songwriter, guitarist and JOVM mainstay Sam Fender. During that same period of time, Fender has received attention nationally, internationally and across the blogosphere for crafting rousingly anthemic material with a broad focus on hard-hitting social issues that generally draw from his own experiences growing up in Northeastern England.
Now, as you may recall, this year has been a breakthrough year for the Newcastle-born and-based JOVM mainstay: his full-length debut Hypersonic Missiles, which was recorded and produced at Fender’s self-built North Shields-based warehouse studio, with longtime friend, producer and collaborator Bramwell Bronte was released to critical applause earlier this year. Adding to a momentous year that included several American late night nationally televised appearances, and a wildly successful international tour that saw him play across North America twice, Fender’s debut album recently topped the British Album charts.
Interestingly, the Newcastle-born and-based singer/songwriter and guitarist closes out a huge 2019 with his latest single “All Is On My Side.” Although the song doesn’t appear on his critically applauded and commercially successful debut, “All Is On My Side” has been a regular fixture of his live set for the past few years — and a fan favorite. Interestingly enough, Fender officially released the stand-alone single after a committed online campaign by his fans to put it out. While centered around the sleek and slick production and arena rock friendly hooks that has won him international acclaim, the propulsive song finds Fender crafting a synthesis of 70s AM rock along the lines of Gerry Rafferty and 80s New Wave and rock reminiscent of Billy Idol, complete with a Eric Clapton Slowhand-era like guitar solo.
“’All Is On My Side’ is a real live favorite for me,” Fender says in press notes. “It’s been a mainstay in the set for a couple of years now and it’s nice to release this as a bit of a thank you to all the fans at the end of the year.”
Fender closes out the year with a sold out series of shows across the UK and Ireland. He goes back on the road in March with a series of sold out shows. Hopefully, he’ll return to the States next year. But if he’s in your town, catch him before he blows up — and say you saw him way back when. Check out the tour dates below.

Tour Dates 2019:
10th December – O2 Academy Brixton, London SOLD OUT
11th December – O2 Academy Brixton, London SOLD OUT
13th December – Great Hall, Cardiff SOLD OUT
14th December – O2 Academy, Bournemouth SOLD OUT
16th December – Dublin, Olympia SOLD OUT
17th December – Ulster Hall, Belfast SOLD OUT
19th December – O2 Academy, Sheffield SOLD OUT
21st December – O2 Academy, Newcastle SOLD OUT
22nd December – O2 Academy, Newcastle SOLD OUT
Tour Dates 2020:
20th March – O2 Victoria Warehouse, Manchester SOLD OUT
21st March – O2 Victoria Warehouse, Manchester SOLD OUT
23rd March – Barrowland Ballroom, Glasgow SOLD OUT
24th March – Barrowland Ballroom, Glasgow SOLD OUT
26th March – Alexandra Palace, London SOLD OUT
27th March – Alexandra Palace, London SOLD OUT
30th March – De Montfort Hall, Leicester SOLD OUT
31st March – Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff SOLD OUT
2nd April –First Direct Arena, Leeds SOLD OUT
3rd April – Utilita Arena, Newcastle SOLD OUT