Tag: Spotify

New Video: Rising French Artist MathIeu Saïkaly Releases a Trippy New Visual and Single

Mathieu Saïkaly is an emerging French electronic music producer and artist, who started his career in earnest when he turned 17: Saïkaly started a YouTube channel that initially featured recordings of the French producer and artist doing covers — but over time, little by little, he began releasing original material. Much like countless other young artists across the world, Saikaly started developing and honing his own style, discovering what resonated with him. Writing and singing lyrics in English and French, Saïkaly searched for ways to make his knowledge of both languages work together on a project, which he improved upon each year.

When Saïkaly turned 20, he left the confines of his bedroom. He didn’t quite know where or how to start a music career but his friends told him he should sign up for Nouvelle Star. He wound up winning the 2014 season — signing an Elliott Smith song in the final. He was signed to a major label and released his full-length debut, 2015’s A Million Particles, which featured the viral hit “From Glass To Ice,” a song that amassed over four million streams on Spotify.

When he turned 24, the French producer and artist decided to go the independent route: He created his own label, which released his sophomore album, 2019’s Quatre Murs Blanc, an intimate and impressionistic album that focuses on emotions first and the story second. The album featured album track”Mama Oh I Swear,” which amassed 400,000 Spotify streams.

Last year, Saïkaly released two singles “My Pride” and “If it’s all a choice,” which further cemented his reputation for being a restless experimentalist. Continuing upon that reputation, his latest single “Plus jamais te revoir” is a trippy and mind-bending track centered around tweeter and woofer rocking beats, shimmering and wobbling synth arpeggios and Saïkaly’s achingly tender vocals layered upon each other to create a song that feels like a vivid fever dream. Interestingly, as Saïkaly explains “the goal was to make you want to let go, when you’re alone at one, and dance with your eyers closed, in your own bubble.”

Saïkaly goes on to explain that the video for the song was meant to “mirror as much as possible the feelings inside the song.” And as a result, the video employs a blue color scheme and several different Saïkalys moving as though being possessed. It’s an equally trippy fever dream.

Nashville-based singer/songwriter, topliner and pop artist Notelle has worked with an eclectic array of producers and DJs across the globe since 2014. And in that time, her work and contributions as a songwriter and vocalist has amassed well over 12 million Spotify streams with songs appearing on a number of popular playlists, including Spotify‘s FreshEDM, Hot New DanceFriday CratediggersHeart BeatsSad BeatsPop ChilloutStudy BreakFresh FindsFresh Finds: Poptronix, Italians Do It BetterShisha LoungeStepping OutNew Music Fridays and Deep Delight, as well as Apple Music‘s Pop Rising and Breaking Dance playlists. This wildly eclectic work has seen the Nashville-based artist released material on over labels like ArmadaMonstercatProximityLowlyHinkyAtLastSeeking BlueThrive MusicUltra MusicOphelia and Knight Vision (Warner Music) — while remaining fiercely independent.

After a lengthy and varied career as a go-to collaborator, Notelle decided to step out into the spotlight as a solo artist. Over the past three years, the rising Nashville-based artist has established and honed her own attention grabbing take on dark industrial pop. As a solo artist, Notelle has been named a Nashville Artist to Watch in 2020 by Nashville Scene. Her solo debut “Power” premiered on Lightning 100‘s The 615 and her third “Out of Love” received regular rotation by the station.

Last year, I wrote about two of the rising Nashville-based artist’s singles:

Notelle’s first single of 2021, “Doctor Sign” is heavily influenced by Trent Reznor, Au5 and Flume while further cementing her reputation for boundary-pushing production: in this case, dry and distorted yet seductive lead vocals and almost choral-like harmonic layers are paired with wobbling bass synths, industrial clang and clatter, razor sharp hooks and the sort of enormous bass drop that would make Skrillex proud. Interestingly, much like the rest of her steadily growing catalog. Notelle manages to craft bangers with an intensely unvarnished honesty that’s both intimate and uncomfortable. Our feelings and thoughts about ourselves, the situations we put ourselves in and the people we choose to deal with can be ugly — especially when we’ve been hurt or betrayed, if we’re truly honest about it. Of course, easier said than done!

“When writing ‘Doctor Sign’, I really gave myself permission to lean into some unattractive emotions,” Notelle explains. “I had a lot of anger towards someone who really took advantage of my kindness and natural vulnerability. I felt vindictive after that, and that’s not a particularly good color on me. I didn’t want to act on those feelings, so instead, I threw them in a song. I figured I could save myself the headache and skip out on all the repercussions of getting revenge. To me, this song is about watching someone cruel get their comeuppance. It’s out of character for me to feel satisfaction in watching someone reap what they sow, but in this particular situation…I didn’t mind it. I just pictured them letting their cruelty, and their actions, rot them from the inside out. Pictured them losing their mind because they can’t stand to be alone with themselves, and that was fine with me. Some people are their own punishment, so I can keep my hands clean and just throw my ill-wishes into a song. It’s therapeutic and it’s not my problem anymore.” 

With the release of Oceans EP, Blonde Maze, the acclaimed recording project of New York-based singer/songwriter. electronic music artist and producer Amanda Steckler received attention from this site and elsewhere across the blogosphere for slickly produced synth pop centered around earnest lyricism, documenting her experiences, feelings and thoughts. Since Oceans EP, Steckler has released a handful of singles including “Antartica,” “Thunder” and others to praise from Billboard Pride, DJMag, XLR8R, Impose Magazine and many others, as well as love and support from BBC1, MrSuicideSheep, and MTV Radar.

Adding to a growing profile, Steckler’s material has landed on several Spotify and Apple Music playlists, including Spotify’s US Viral 50, as well as landing at #1 on Hype Machine‘s No Remixes chart. LADYGUNN named her an “artist you should’ve seen at SXSW 2018″ — and she’s opened for the likes of The Shadowboxers, Elderbrook and Vallis Alps. During that same period of time, the JOVM mainstay also released collaborations with a number of established and up-and-coming electronic music producers including including the Iowa City, IA-born, Duluth, MN-based electronic music artist and producer Kyle Stern, best known as Attom. 

The New York-based electronic music artist, electronic music producer and JOVM mainstay begins her 2021 with a cover of Mazzy Star‘s beloved, 1993 smash hit “Fade Into You.” While replacing the jangling guitars, twinkling keys and tambourine of the beloved original with shimmering and atmospheric synths, synth click and skittering beats, the Blonde Maze cover retains both vocal melody and the swooning and urgent yearning of the original — but the end result is more of a contented sigh.

“IMO it’s kind of a blissful/happy take on the beautifully yearning original,” Steckler wrote to me in an email. “I’ve been listening to the original for years — probably a decade now — and still love it. Hope Sandoval and David Roback really created a gem.”

New Video: Rising British Indie Electro Pop Duo NOPRISM Release a Cinematically Shot Surreal Visual for Anthemic New Single

With the release of singles like “Pieces” and “House of Smith” which have amassed over 150,000 Spotify streams combined, the rising, Newcastle-based indie electro pop duo NOPRISM — Andrew Young and Mark Nelson — have quickly and firmly established a sound that’s indebted to mid-to-late 80s New Wave and house music. “Pieces” and “House of Smith” have received airplay on BBC Music Introducing and have been playlisted by XS Manchester’s Evening Show — and adding to a growing profile, “Happiness” was championed by Duran Duran’s Simon LeBon and featured on E4’s Made in Chelsea.

Continuing on the momentum of last year, the duo begin 2021 with “Pantherbeat,’ an arena friendly club banger, centered around aggressive synth arpeggios, punchy and thumping beats and a rousingly anthemic hook. Certainly, if you’re a child of the 80s, “Pantherbeat” will bring nostalgic longing for Dead or Alive, New Order, Frankie Goes to Hollywood, Pet Shop Boys, and others — but while possessing a slick, modern production.

“’Pantherbeat,’ is actually the first song written by the band when we first began writing last year, and now feels like the right time to release it,” NOPRISM’s Andrew Young explains in press notes. “It’s main lyric ‘You’ve gotta have faith’ sounds pretty apt right now, even though it wasn’t an intentional statement. It’s about the onset of a headrush… when the next high is about to kick in, or when the needle is about to drop on a big record. That brief moment of expectation and euphoria.”

Centered around gorgeous and cinematically shot black and white footage shot by Russian videographer Cottonbro, the recently released video for “Pantherbeat” follows a lean and tattooed boxer training for a big fight with a monastic-like dedication.In a surreal and feverish twist, the big fight turns into a pulsating night club — with the spectators, including bored family and friends dancing to the thumping banger while the two boxers fight. “We’ve used his [Cottonbro’s] footage for each release so far as it has a strange otherworldly feel to it, and we take multiple clips to piece together some kind of loose story which is told alongside the song. The videos have very much become part of the aesthetic of each release.”

Claudia Ferme is a Chicago-based singer/songwriter and the creative mastermind behind the existential dream pop, solo recording project Claude. Ferme began crafting songs inspired by Joni Mitchell, Amy Winehouse, Angel Olsen and Weyes Blood during her senior year of college in Bloomington, IN as a way to deal with the dread and fear she felt with being finished with school and not knowing what she wanted to do with her life.

The project became fully realized when she returned to Chicago during the spring of 2018. After meeting other musicians, Ferme decided to form a backing band for the project and started playing shows locally. And since 2018, Ferme’s music has landed on a number of Spotify and YouTube playlists, including Spotify’s Fresh Finds, The LazyLazyMe, BIRP, My Old Kentucky Blog, and Hype Machine.

Ferme’s Claude debut, Enactor EP is slated for a February 12, 2021 release through Side Hustle Records/The Orchard. The EP’s second and latest single “Everything’s Great” coincides with the most recent impeachment hearings dominating the media landscape again — and it manages to tie back to the song’s origin: “I wrote this song after Trump got elected,” Ferme says in press notes. “It felt like the world was ending and I wanted to somehow poke fun at his ‘Make America Great Again’ slogan.” Centered around shimmering and atmospheric synths, gorgeous yet brooding strings and Ferme’s plaintive and ethereal vocals, “Everything’s Great” manages to tap into the deep in the soul exhaustion of the Trump Administration. The song is a gentle call for escapism as a form of self-preservation when everything is on fire — with the song’s narrator essentially saying “turn off your phone, so you can stop doom scrolling — and take a moment to daydream.” Maybe we should all take that advice every now and then.




New Video: Baltimore’s DDm Serves Up Advant Garde Looks in Visual For Swaggering “Stop My Bag”

DDm is a Baltimore-based emcee, who over the past handful of years rose from the battle-rap circuit to star solo performer in his own right with the release of last year’s full-length debut Beautiful Gowns, which served as an introducing to the Charm City-based artist’s bravado, wit, humor, heart and unique style with album singles like “He Say She Say” and “Pull Up” have amassed over 100,000 total streams on Spotify and YouTube.

Brooklyn-based psych pop/dance pop act Psymon Spine — Noah Prebish, Sabine Holler, Brother Michael Rudinski, and Peter Spears — can trace its origins back to when its founding duo of Noah Prebish and Peter Spears met while attending college. Bonding over mutual influences and common artistic aims, Psymon Spine’s founding duo toured the European Union with Prebish’s electronic project Karate. And as the story goes, while in Paris,  Spears and Prebish wrote their first song together. By the time, they arrived in London, they were offered a record deal. 

When the band’s founding duo returned to the States, Spears recruited Micheal “Brother Micheal” Rudinski and their Karate bandmates Devon Kilbern, Nathaniel Coffey to join their newest project. And with that lineup, they fished out the demos, which wold eventually comprise their full-length debut, 2017’s You Are Coming to My Birthday. The band went out to support the effort with immersive art and dance parties like their Secret Friend party series across Brooklyn and through relentless touring.

Prebish was also splitting his creative time with rising Brooklyn-based dram pop act Barrie and around the same time, his work with the rising dream pop act began to receive attention across the blogosphere and elsewhere through the release of a handful of buzz worthy singles, followed by their full-length debut, last year’s Happy to Be Here. Interestingly while with Barrie, Prebish met his further Psymon Spine bandmate, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Sabine Holler.

Without live shows and touring, the members of Psymon Spine have been busy releasing new material this year, which included two singles:

  • Milk,” a coquettish, club friendly banger with Barrie that brings In Ghost Colours-era Cut Copy and Soft Metals‘ Lenses and received quite a bit of attention internationally — with the single receiving praise from   VanyalandHigh Clouds, Echowave Magazine, The RevueHype Machine and a list of others.The track also landed on  Spotify playlists like UndercurrentsAll New Indie and Fresh Finds, as well as the YouTube channels of  David Dean BurkhartNice Guys‘ and Birp.fm. And lastly, the track received airplay on BBC Radio 6.
  • Modmed,” an  Andrew VanWyngarden-produced and cowritten, strutting disco-tinged track that’s actually deceptively upbeat, as it captures the ambivalent and confusing mixture of frustration, doubt and relief of a relationship that had long petered out and finally wound down to its inevitable conclusion. Interestingly, the song is inspired and informed by personal experience: Prebish and Holler’s difficult decision to leave Barrie to focus on Pysmon Spine full-time.

Psymon Spine’s third single of this year, is the hazy and lysergic banger “Confusion.” Centered around shimmering synth arpeggios, a wobbling bass line, blown out beats and Prebish’s plaintive vocals, a trippy spoken word-delivered break and a looping guitar solo, Psymon Spine’s latest single brings Tame Impala‘s Currents to mind. Much like its immediate predecessors, “Confusion” continues a run of carefully crafted and breezy, hook driven pop.

Interestingly, the release of the single manages to simultaneously coincide with the announcement of the Brooklyn-based act’s third album Charismatic Megafauna while encapsulating the album’s overall theme and vibe — the complicated feelings involved in the dissolution of human relationships. In particular “Confusion” finds the band channeling the confusing and contradictory feelings following the sort of breakup that has lead to a major rift in the larger social circle — but while also possibly hinting to the end of a friendship or working relationship. And as a result, the song seems to evoke the desire to dance away the hurt, for a little while at least.

Charismatic Megafauna is slated for a February 21, 2021 release through Northern Spy.



New Video: Psymon Spine Teams Up with MGMT’s Andrew VanWyngarden on a Glittery Club Banger

Rapidly rising Brooklyn-based psych pop/dance pop act Psymon Spine can trace its origins to when founding duo Noah Prebish and Peter Spears met while attending college. Bonding over mutual influences and common artistic aims, the duo went off to tour Europe with Prebish’s electronic act Karate. While in Paris, Spears and Prebish wrote their first song together and when they got to London, they were offered a record deal.

Upon returning to the states, Spears recruited Micheal “Brother Micheal” Rudinski and their Karate bandmates Devon Kilbern, Nathaniel Coffey to the band — and with that lineup they fleshed out the demos, which would eventually become their full-length debut, 2017’s You Are Coming to My Birthday. The members of the rising Brooklyn-based act then supported the album with immersive art and dance parties through their Secret Friend series across Brooklyn, as well as relentless touring.

Simultaneously, Prebish’s work with rising Brooklyn-based dream pop act Barrie began to receive quite a bit of attention across the blogosphere and elsewhere with a handful of buzz-worthy singles and their critically applauded full-length debut, last year’s Happy to Be Here. Interestingly, this led Prebish to meet his Barrie bandmate, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Sabine Holler, who then joined Psymon Spine.

“Milk,” a collaboration with their former bandmate Barrie was the first bit of new material by the Brooklyn-based act inn three years — and it’s the first recorded output with their newest member Sabine Holler. Since the single’s release, it has received airplay on BBC Radio 6 and earned praise from a number of media outlets including Vanyaland, High Clouds, Echowave Magazine, The Revue, Hype Machine and a list of others. The track also landed on a number of YouTube channels including David Dean Burkhart‘s. Nice Guys‘ and Birp.fm, as well as Spotify playlists like Undercurrents, All New Indie and Fresh Finds. Additionally, Apple Music’s Matt Wilkinson featured the track. None of this should be surprising: the track sonically recalls In Ghost Colours-era Cut Copy and Soft Metals‘ Lenses –but with a mischievously coquettish air that makes it a club friendly banger.

The Andrew VanWyngarden-produced and cowritten “Modmed” is a glittering and strutting disco-tinged track, centered around wobbling low end, glistening synth arpeggios and a sinuous bass line and a soaring hook. While drawing from 80s New Wave and classic house music, the track interestingly enough, is deceptively and ironically upbeat: the track actually captures the ambivalent and confusing mix of frustration, doubt and relief of a relationship that’s finally come to a conclusion. In particular, the song actually describes Prebish’s and Holler’s decision to leave Barrie and focus on Psymon Spine full-time.

“Psymon Spine invited me into the studio one winter’s day and we had a fun and funky time ripping Juno basslines and dialing in lush tones,” Andrew VanWyngarden recalls in press notes. “I like that their dj and record digging knowledge comes through distinctly on this track.”

Directed by the band and edited by Noah Prebish, the recently released video for “Modmed” is a delirious and playful lo-fi visual in which we see the members of the band goofing off and rocking out to the song in a variety of situations. This is split with footage of the members of the band actually performing the song. It’s all run through trippy filters and VHS-styled graininess, which also helps enhance the track’s retro-futuristic vibe.

New Video: Psymon Spine Teams Up with Barrie on a Shimmering Pop Confection and Playful Visual

Rising Brooklyn-based psych pop/dance pop act Psymon Spine can trace its origins back to when founding and core members Noah Prebish and Peter Spears met while attending college. Bonding over mutual influences and common artistic aims, the duo went off to tour Europe with Prebish’s electronic act Karate. While in Paris, Spears and Prebish wrote their first song together and when they got to London, they were offered a record deal.

Upon returning to the states, Spears recruited Micheal “Brother Micheal” Rudinski and their Karate bandmates Devon Kilbern, Nathaniel Coffey to the band — and with that lineup they fleshed out the demos, which would eventually become their full-length debut, 2017’s You Are Coming to My Birthday, which they supported with immersive art and dance parties through their Secret Friend series across Brooklyn and some relentless touring.

Simultaneously, Prebish’s work with rising Brooklyn-based dream pop act Barrie began to receive quite a bit of attention across the blogosphere and elsewhere with a handful of buzz-worthy singles and their critically applauded full-length debut, last year’s Happy to Be Here. Interestingly, this led Prebish to meet his Barrie bandmate, vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Sabine Holler, who then joined Psymon Spine.

“Milk” feat. Barrie is the first bit of new material from the Brooklyn-based psych pop/dance pop act in three years — and it’s the first recorded output with their newest member Sabine Holler. Since the single’s release, it has received airplay on BBC Radio 6 and it has earned praise from a number of media outlets including Vanyaland, High Clouds, Echowave Magazine, The Revue, Hype Machine and a list of others. The track also landed on a number of YouTube channels including David Dean Burkhart’s. Nice Guys’ and Birp.fm, as well as Spotify playlists like Undercurrents, All New Indie and Fresh Finds. Additionally, Apple Music’s Matt Wilkinson featured the track. And when you hear the new track, the attention its earned shouldn’t be surprising: the track is centered around an angular bass line, shimmering guitars, glistening synth arpeggios, thumping beats, a punchy and anthemic hook, and Barrie’s sultry vocals. Sonically, the track may remind some listeners of In Ghost Colours-era Cut Copy and Soft Metals’ Lenses –but with a mischievously coquettish air that makes it a club friendly banger.

Directed by Maya Prebish, Noah’s sister, the recently released video for “Milk” uses the wildly popular video game Animal Crossing: New Horizons and features each member of the band as a game avatar. And of course, each member of the band does something within the game — including play (sort of) an outdoor set, fish, sit in cafes and daydream.

“We were trying to come up with a way to shoot a music video together during a pandemic, with Sabine stuck in Germany and Barrie being god-knows-where,” Noah Prebish says of the new video made during pandemic-related social distancing and quarantine guidelines. “I remembered that my sister is a genius wizard and Nintendo dork and thought: ‘what’s more quarantine than a hap-hazard Animal Crossing video organized via a bunch of confusing Zoom calls?'” The video’s director, Maya Prebish, adds: “When Noah came to me with the idea, I jumped onboard right away. It was a lot of fun turning Psymon Spine and Barrie into villagers, and I think it was a super fun way to bring everyone together even though they’re dispersed all over the world at the moment. I don’t think any of them know how to fish in real life, but that’s creative license.”

With the release of 2018’s full-length debut album Thick Skin, Mackay, Australia-born, Brisbane, Australia-based singer/songwriter Tia Gostelow exploded into the national and international scenes. Album single “Strangers” received over 10 million Spotify streams — and adding to a breakthrough year, Gostelow opened for the likes of Ball Park Music, Frightened Rabbit, The Rubens and Gomez and played sets across the international festival circuit, including Falls Festival and SXSW. Thick Skin also landed a Triple J album feature, which may have led to her appearing on the station’s covers series Like A Version.

Last year, Gostelow went on her first national headlining tour, which she followed up with tours across the States, the UK and the European Union. During that same period of time, the rising Aussie artist started work on her Oscar Dawson-produced sophomore album, an effort that will reportedly see Gostelow moving away from the guitar-based indie and folk sound of her debut and towards a lush synth pop soundscape. The album’s third single, The Money War-written “Always” sees Gostelow and Dawson collaborating with Dawson’s Holy Holy bandmate Tim Carroll, who contributes vocals to the song.

Centered around atmospheric electronics, shimmering synth arpeggios, a disco inspired bass line, a soaring hook and alternating boy-girl verses sung by Carroll and Gostelow, the song is a swooning and earnest declaration of love and devotion through a difficult and confusing time for both parties. Of all the things we claim to understand about the workings of world, the one we can’t quite grasp is love. Love simply doesn’t make sense. The song manages to capture something that should feel familiar to most — if not, all — of us: that tiny fluttering aches and sighs of a new love/new crush/new situationship and the creeping fear that because of your past relationships and your baggage that you might screw it all up. “I really wanted to have a big 80’s synth-pop, big drums kind of sound that everybody wants to dance to,” Gostelow says. “It kind of reminds me of an 80’s prom in a rom-com movie.”

Adds Gostelow, “I really connected with it lyrically straight away, when I first heard it I had the feeling it was about being in love with someone but not physically being able to be with them and also pushing through all of the hard parts in a relationship because you know the good outweighs the bad. It just fit perfectly within the record as I’ve really highlighted my feelings about being away from my loved ones, feeling lonely and I guess just trying to figure out who I am as a 20-year old woman.”

 

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