Tag: Single Review

Rising Los Angeles-based coldwave/darkwave/dark synth-riot act Violent Vickie — Vickie (vocals, production) and E (guitar, production) — have released material through a handful of labels including  Crunch PodEmerald & Doreen RecordingsRiot Grrl Berlin and LoveCraft Bar, which the act has supported with tours with Atari Teenage Riot‘s Hanin EliasThe Vanishing‘s Jessie Evans, Trans XThem Are Us Too, Aimon & The Missing Persons and others. The duo have also played sets across the US and European festival circuits with stops at Insted FestSolidarity FestShoutback Fest and Gay Prides and Ladyfests. 

Their single “The Wolf” was featured in a National Organization for Women film. Violent Vickie’s Vickie was also interviewed for the documentary GRRL as part of the museum exhibit Alien She. Adding to the band’s growing profile, their album Monster Alley was voted best album by KALX. And if you’ve been frequenting this site, you may recall that their latest album Division, which featured the dark yet dance floor friendly “Circle Square” was released last September.

Since the release of Division, the band has been busy writing and recording material, including their latest single, a Mazzy Star-like take on Johnny Cash‘s “Ring of Fire” centered around a sparse arrangement of strummed guitar and Vickie’s plaintive vocals fed through gentle amounts of reverb. Sonically, the track is a marked departure from the chilly, dark and aggressive coldwave and New Wave-inspired tracks they’re known for, while retaining the longing of the original.

MMYYKK (pronounced “Mike”) is a rising Inland Empire, CA-born, Minneapolis-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer. 2019’s highly praised Electro Soul EP found the Inland Empire-born, Minneapolis-based multi-hyphenate artist further establishing a difficult to pigeonhole sound and approach that draws from soul, future funk, R&B, hip-hop, jazz and fusion — and seems equally indebted to Thundercat, Flying Lotus, Herbie Hancock, and Stevie Wonder.

MMYYKK is also an accomplished ambient artist: Last year’s Mellow Moods and Meditations was released to praise. Earlier this year, he produced PASSAGE, a Black mental health and wellness initiative done in collaboration with the folks at Okayplayer. Building upon a busy year, the Inland Empire-born, Minneapolis-based artist will be releasing the Science EP through London-based label Rhythm Section INTL in September.

Science EP‘s first single is the slinky “Divine.” Centered around MMYYKK’s sultry falsetto, glistening synth arpeggios and a strutting bass line, the flirtatious “Divine” sonically will draw comparisons to D’Angelo and Thundercat, as the crafted manages to be effortless yet carefully crafted. Interestingly, underneath the funky grooves, the song is a much-needed and loving ode to Black women. “Black women taught me how to love. Women literally save the world every day. This track was a way for me to express appreciation and sing praises to the women in my life,” MMYYKK explains in press notes.



New Audio: French DJ and Producer Delon Releases an Ibiza-like Banger

Greg Delon is an acclaimed NÎmes, France-based, self-taught DJ and producer, who is best known in French and international electronic music circles as Delon. Over the past 25 years, the French DJ and producer has been extremely busy.

He founded Apéro Techno, a night at Nimes-based club paloma that features an eclectic array of French producers and DJs — and part of the A-Nimé Festival Association (of which he’s the president)
He’s the founder and head of Way of House Records, a French house music/electronic music label.

elon’s latest single “Sorry” is a sleek and sensual banger centered around shimmering synth melodies, a soulful vocal sample, skittering pads, thumping beats and a euphoric hook. The end result is a summery, Ibiza meets 90s take on deep house.

The New Mastersounds — currently, Eddie Roberts (guitar, production), Simon Allen (drums), Pete Stand (bass) and Joe Tatton (keys) — can trace their origins back to the late 1990s: At the time Roberts was promoting a club night in his native Leeds called The Cooker. When The Cooker moved into a new venue with a second floor in 1999, there was both the space and opportunity to put a live band together to compliment the night’s DJ sets.

As it turned out Roberts and Simon Allen had previously played together in The Mastersounds, an act that featured a different bassist and no keyboards. Through friends and the intimate nature of the Leeds scene, Pete Shand and Bob Birch (Hammond) were recruited to join the band, which became The New Mastersounds. Their earliest material was raw and leaned heavily towards boogaloo — but their first rehearsal was so memorable and so hot that Blow It Hard Records released it on two limited-edition 7″ singles in 2000.Since then, the band has released 24 more seven inch singles, 13 full-length albums, three live albums, a remix album and three compilations released in the uK, Japan and the States. During that same period, the band went through a major lineup change with grizzled Leeds scene veteran Joe Tatton replacing Bob Birch on keys and organ.

As a band and individually, The New Mastersounds have collaborated with an eclectic and diverse array of musicians, DJs and producers including Lou Donaldson, Corinne Bailey Rae, Quantic, Carleen Anderson, Keb Darge, Kenny Dope, Mr. Scruff, LSK, Lack of Afro, Page McConnell, Grace Potter, Karl Denson, Melvin Sparks, Idris Muhammad, Fred Wesley, Pee-Wee Ellis, Maceo Parker, Bernard Purdie, George Porter, Jr., Zigaboo Modeliste, Art Neville and Ernest Ranglin.

The New Mastersounds’ latest single “A Brighter Day” can trace its origins back to just after the 2020 election: the band’s Eddie Roberts had written a buoyant and uplifting composition that sonically seems indebted to Curtis Mayfield and classic Motown soul. Roberts then invited some of Color Red Music‘s top vocalists to contribute lyrics to the song. As the story goes, Josh Hoyer and Soul Colossal‘s Josh Hoyer had written down some uplifting lyrics and put them in the can — for whenever an opportunity would call for them. Little did he know, that the occasion would be Roberts calling him to invite him to contribute lyrics. Lyrically, the song is centered around the hope of a brighter, fairer and inclusive new day for all, after a brutally difficult and uneasy few years.

We got work to do y’all. Let’s get to it!



Denver-based indie rock trio Hello, Mountain — Stephen Pamas, Jack Falk and Patrick Smith — formed in back in 2014. And since their formation, the Denver-based trio have specials in what the act describes as glossy indie rock with sincerity.

Hello, Mountain recently released their sophomore album Swim. The album’s latest single “Talk To You” is centered around shimmering guitars, plaintive vocals and a rousingly anthemic hook within an alternating loud verse, even louder chorus/hook song structure. While sonically bearing a resemblance to Radiohead and Massive Context EP-era Hands, “Talk To You” is a swooning and earnest love song written with a pop leaning accessibility.

Emerging Dallas-based synth pop quartet Luna Luna initially began in 2007 as the solo recording project of its Colombian-born, Dallas-based frontperson and founding member Kavvi. The then-14 year old Kavvi began experimenting and tinkering with GarageBand on his iPhone, which lead to the project’s earliest material. After meeting Danny Bonilla at an open-mic night, where they shared the bill, Luna Luna quickly expanded into a duo. Kaylin Martinez (drums) and Ryan “Gordo” Gordon (drums) were recruited to join the band, after meeting and playing Texas’ house show scene.

The Dallas-based quartet recently announced the forthcoming release of their full-length debut Flower Moon, an effort that will feature, the attention grabbing and critically applauded single “One Thing,” which features a guest spot from The Undercover Dream Lovers‘ Matt Koenig. Building upon a growing profile, Luna Luna released Flower Moon‘s third and latest single “Early Morning.” Centered around glistening synth arpeggios, a propulsive yet sultry groove and Kavvi’s plaintive vocals the summery banger reminds me — to my ears, at least — of Currents-era Tame Impala. And while expressing a desperate, and lustful longing for that special someone, the song reveals an act that has quickly developed an unerring knack for crafting an infectious, dance floor friendly hook.

“‘Early Morning’ is about wanting to physically be with someone,” Luna Luna’s frontman Kavvi explains. “You know sometimes you can Facetime and text all day with someone but at some point that’s not enough and you need to be physically there with them. It’s definitely the most lustful song on the project. I’ve fallen in love with bass recently and that’s what started this song. I think this song is perfect for a night time drive on the highway. That’s when I listen to it the most.”

Along with the new single, the Dallas-based act announced a 19 date tour. Check out the tour dates below.

TOUR:

(W/ BOYO and Alex Sigel and Estereomance on selected dates)

Wednesday 11.10: Santa Ana, CA @ Locker Room +

Thursday 11.11: Los Angeles, CA @ Teregram +

Friday 11.12: San Diego, CA @ House of Blues (Voodoo) +

Saturday 11.13: Santa Cruz, CA @ The Catalyst (Atrium)

Sunday 11.14: San Francisco, CA Rickshaw Stop + localized 

Monday 11.15: Sacramento, CA @ The Starlet Room

Tuesday 11.16: Reno, NV @ Holland Project

Thursday 11.18: Portland, OR @ Honey Latte Cafe

Friday 11.19: Seattle, WA @ Crocodile 

Saturday 11.20: Boise, ID @ Shredder

Sunday 11.21: Salt Lake City, UT @ Kilby Court

Tuesday 11.23: Denver, CO @ Hi-Dive

Tuesday 12.7: Tucson, AZ @ Club Congress #

Wednesday 12.8: Phoenix, AZ @ The Rebel Lounge #

Friday 12.10: El Paso, TX @ Lowbrow Palace #

Saturday 12.11: San Antonio, TX @ Paper Tiger #

Sunday 12.12: Austin, TX @ The Parish #

Monday 12.13: Houston, TX @ Warehouse Live (Studio) #

Tuesday 12.14: Dallas, TX @ Trees #

+ Alex Siegel #Estereomance

Oxydane is a new series of free, monthly tracks written and recorded by artists on French electronic music label Lake of Confidence. The latest single in the monthly series is “Venus” by the young, mysterious Bastia, Corsica, France-based producer Yiós. Centered around layers of shimmering synth arpeggios, a relentless motorik groove, the incredibly cinematic “Venues” sonically brings John Carpenter soundtracks to mind, as it seems to come from a dystopian future much like our own.

Sneaker Pimps — currently founding members Liam Howe (production) and Chris Corner (guitar, vocals) with newly recruited Simonne Jones (vocals) — can trace their origins back to their formation in Hartlepool, UK back in 1994: The act’s initial lineup of Howe, Corner, Kelli Ali (née Dayton), Joe Wilson and Dave Westlake quickly established themselves as one of the pioneers of trip hop with their critically applauded and commercially successful, full-length debut, 1996’s Becoming X, which featured their signature track “6 Underground.”

Ali left the band after the release of Becoming X. Corner took over on vocal duties and the band went on to release two more albums, 1999’s Splinter and 2002’s Bloodsport. Wilson and Westlake left the band in 2002. Shortly after, Sneaker Pimps’ founding members made a mutual decision to explore other creative avenues: Corner and Howe went on to their own highly successful individual ventures in music and film, collaborating with the likes of Gary Numan, Lana del Rey and others with IAMX (Corner) and AMP (Howe). During their initial seven-year run, Sneaker Pimps had five UK Top 40 singles — the aforementioned “Six Underground,” “Spin Spin Sugar,” “Low Five,” and “Bloodsport.”

Sneaker Pimps’ founding members, who are currently split between London and Los Angeles ended a lengthy 14 year hiatus back in 2016 with hints of new music. Since then, the act’s fans have been desperately waiting for new material. Five years have passed but earlier this year Howe and Corner announced that they’d be releasing a new album, their highly anticipated fourth album, Squaring the Circle in the fall. Recently, Corner and Howe, along with their newest member Simonne Jones released a double single of album material, “Squaring the Circle” and “Fighter.”

Album title track “Squaring the Circle” is a yearning duet between Corner and Jones centered around a hauntingly sparse arrangement of twinkling piano, atmospheric electronics and layered backing vocals. Sonically, the track is a decided departure from their commercially successful initial run with the cinematic track reminding me quite a bit of Tales of Us-era Goldfrapp. “Fighter” finds the legendary trip hop pioneers crafting a remarkably contemporary sound centered around wobbling synth arpeggios, skittering beats paired with Jones’ sultry vocals and a rousingly anthemic hook. While clearly being wildly different, the tracks are thematically related with both tracks being tales of survival — in desperate and uncertain times.

“After 18 years of dormancy and deliberation we (Sneaker Pimps) are releasing not one, but two new tracks,” Sneaker Pimps’ Liam Howe explains. “‘Fighter’ is a plea for courage and strength against prevailing mental health crises. ‘Squaring the Circle’ (via Nietzsche) is a heartfelt ode to eternal returns of love, in the face of desperate adversity. Contrasting in nature, hopefully these songs describe the diversity and essence of the new album.

“It’s taken many years and many false starts to get Sneaker Pimps back in the game,” Sneaker Pimps’ Chris Corner said on Twitter. “Sometimes [you] need to back the fuck off and let the universe take control. I’m proud and relieved to say that it is finally happening. We officially have new music.”

Look for Squaring the Circle on September 10.

Perry, GA-born, Athens, GA-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer Ernest Greene is creative mastermind behind the acclaimed synth pop/chillwave, JOVM mainstay act Washed Out. Started in earnest in 2009, Greene posted material on MySpace, which caught the attention of a nubmer of influential blogs who championed him, while comparing his work to JOVM mainstay Neon Indian and Memory Tapes.

Building upon a rapidly growing profile, Greene released his first two Washed Out EP in August and September 2009. The Perry-born, Athens-based JOVM mainstay supported his early efforts with his first New York area show at the now, long shuttered Santos Party House. He continued upon that momentum with a set at 2010’s Pitchfork Music Festival. And  “Feel It All Around” was chosen for the acclaimed, smash-hit TV series Portlanadia.

In early 2011, Greene signed with Sub Pop Records, who released his critically applauded and commercially successful full-length Within and Without: the album peaked at #26 on Billboard 200 and #89 on the UK Albums Chart. 2013’s sophomore album Paracosm was a radical change in sonic direction that featured a warmer, tropical-inspired sound — but while retaining the ethereal quality of his previously released material. 2017’s third album, the  Cole M.G.N. co-produced Mister Mellow was released through Stone’s Throw Records, and featured a beatmaker-inspired aesthetic.

Greene’s fourth Washed Out album, last year’s Purple Noon was written and recorded by the JOVM mainstay with production following a brief stint of writing with other artists — mostly notable with Sudan Archives on her debut Athena. Those collaborations found their way into Purple Noon‘s material with the album sonically drawing from R&B and modern pop. While arguably being among the brightest and more robust sounding material he’s released to date, the album is also a big leap forward: Greene’s vocals are placed front and center of the entire mix with the production featuring harder hitting beats.

Deriving its name from Rene Clement’s 1960 film Purple Noon, which was based on Patricia Highsmith’s novel The Talented Mister Ripley, Greene’s fourth Washed Out album is inspired by the Mediterranean coastline — with Greene paying tribute to the region’s island-based cultures, elegance and old-world charm. The surroundings serve as a gorgeous backdrop to stories of passion, love, loss and longing. Purple Noon‘s first single “Too Late” can be descried as a bit of a return to form: it’s swooning synth pop featuring skittering beats, glistening bass synth arpeggios, Greene’s lush vocals, a rousingly anthemic hook and a decidedly Caribbean/Mediterranean Island meets Quiet Storm air. Just under the hook-driven, breezy surface, the song is full of desperately aching longing.

Earlier this month, Green released a remix of “Too Late” by Puerto Rican pop duo Buscabulla. Buscabulla ‘s remix retains Greene’s achingly plaintive and lush vocals and pairs them with a funky and blissed out, New Jack Swing-inspired production featuring a strutting bass line, skittering beats and squiggling synths.

Along with the remix, Greene announced that he’ll finally be hitting the road to support Purple Noon during Winter 2022. The tour includes a February 7, 2022 stop at Brooklyn Bowl. The rest of the tour dates are below. And you can check out the following — https://washedout.net/tour for ticket information and more.
 
Mon. Jan. 10 – Asheville, NC  – Orange Peel
Tue. Jan. 11 – Nashville, TN – Brooklyn Bowl           
Thu. Jan. 13 – Houston, TX – Stereo Live
Fri. Jan. 14 – Austin, TX – Empire
Sat. Jan. 15 – Dallas,  TX – The Granada Theatre
Mon. Jan. 17 – Phoenix, AZ – The Van Buren
Tue. Jan. 18 – San Diego, CA – The Observatory               
Thu. Jan. 20 – Los Angeles,  CA – The Wiltern Theatre
Fri. Jan. 21 – Santa Ana, CA – The Observatory
Sat. Jan. 22 – San Francisco, CA – The Regency                 
Mon. Jan. 24 – Portland, OR – Wonder Ballroom
Tue. Jan. 25 – Seattle, WA – Showbox at the Market 
Fri. Jan. 28 – Salt Lake City, UT – Metro Gallery
Sat. Jan. 29 – Denver, CO – The Gothic Theatre      
Mon. Jan. 31 – Minneapolis, MN – USA – Fine Line
Tue. Feb. 01 – Chicago, IL – Metro    
Thu. Feb. 03 – Toronto, ON – The Danforth Theatre
Fri. Feb. 04 – Montreal, QC – L’Astral
Sat. Feb. 05 – Boston, MA – Paradise                        
Mon. Feb. 07 – Brooklyn, NY  – Brooklyn Steel                                 
Wed. Feb. 09 – Washington, DC – 9:30 Club
Thu. Feb. 10 – Philadelphia, PA – Underground Arts
Fri. Feb. 11 –  Chapel Hill, NC  – Cat’s Cradle
Sat. Feb. 12 – Atlanta GA – The Eastern
 

New Audio: JOVM Mainstay LutchamaK Returns with a Larry Levan-like Banger

There are few artists I’ve written about as much over the past 18-20 months than the frenetically prolific French electronic music producer and JOVM mainstay LutchamaK. During that same 18-20 month period, LutchamaK has released an increasingly eclectic array of material — through EPs, albums and standalone singles — that have found him bouncing around effortlessly between different electronic music styles, genres and sub-genres. 

career: he started the year with Pi, a full-length album written and recorded in a three-month inspired burst that resulted in some of the darkest and heaviest material he has released to date. He followed that up with Quest EP, which featured experimental yet melodic material. A few months later, he dropped the four-song EP Rapscallion. which featured the Radioactivity-era Kraftwerk meets 90s techno-like “James Blitz 007.” 

French producer and JOVM adds another release to a wildly prolific year, the 11 song album Seven Hybrids. A few hours ago, I wrote about the hypnotic club banger “Moonbright.” The album’s second and latest single “Davaï” is a straightforward yet crowd pleasing and hypnotic banger that’s deeply indebted to Larry Levan-era house music: skittering tweeter and woofer rocking beats and a sultry mantra-like vocal sample are paired with dense layers of wobbling synth arpeggios.