Tag: The Line of Best Fit

New Video: JOVM Mainstays La Femme Releases a Motorik Groove Driven Freak Out

Parisian psych pop act La Femme — currently, founding members Sacha Got and Marlon Magnée, along with Sam Lefévre, Noé Delmas, Cleémence Quélennec, Clara Luiciani, Jane Peynot, Marilou Chollet and Lucas Nunez Ritter — was founded back in 2010, and the then-unknown band had managed to hoodwink the French music industry by lining up a DIY Stateside tour with only $3,000 euros and their debut, that year’s Le Podium #1.

After playing 20 gigs across the States, the members of La Femme returned to their native France with immense interest from the Parisian music scene. “The industry was like, ‘What the fuck? They have an EP out and they are touring in the US and we don’t know them?” Marlon Magnée told The Guardian. “So the buzz began to start. When we came back to France, it was red carpet. Fucking DIY.”

2013’s full-length debut Psycho Tropical Berlin was a critical and and commercial success that found the act completely reinventing the sound that initially won them internationally attention while winning a Victoires de la Musique Award. Building upon a rapidly growing internationally recognized profile, the Parisian psych pop act released 2016’s Mystére to praise by Sound Opinions, The Line of Best Fit, The Guardian, AllMusic, BrooklynVegan and a lengthy list of others.

Last year, the acclaimed French act released their first bit of new material in four years with the critically applauded single “Paradigme.” They promptly followed up with two more singles, which I covered on this site:

“Cool Colorado,” a cool yet bombastic single that seemed indebted to Scott Walker and Ennio Morricone soundtracks while being an “ode to the San Francisco of the 70s — and to Colorado, the first American state to legalize cannabis.
Disconnexion,” a surreal what-the-fuck fever dream centered around pulsating Giorgio Moroder-like motorik groove, a fiery banjo solo, atmospheric elecvtroincns, twinkling synth arpeggios, a philosophic soliloquy delivered in a dry, academic French and operatic caterwauling.

Interestingly, the Parisian JOVM mainstays announced that their highly-anticipated third album Paradigmes is slated for an April 2, 2021 release through the band’s Disque Pointu/IDOL. And along with the album’s announcement, the members of La Femme released Paradigmes’ latest single Foutre le Bordel,” a breakneck, nihilistic, motorik-groove driven, freak out that sonically seems like a slick synthesis of Freedom of Choice-era DEVO and Giorgio Moroder with a ’77 punk rock nihilism. The approximate English translation of the words chanted in the song’s chorus is: “It’s the return of terror, all the kids sing in unison, I wanna fuck it up!” And as a result, the song is a decided dance floor meets mosh pit ripper specifically designed to turn a crowd upside down.

The recently released video for the song was animated and directed by the members of the band — and the visual is a neon colored, lysergic freakout that includes a surfing guitar player, musicians, who’s innards are revealed and other weird imagery. It’s La Femme at their best — being a wild head fuck that you can bop to.

New Video: JOVM Mainstays La Femme Release a Feverish and Surreal Visual for Genre-defying Freak Out “Disconnexion”

La Femme — currently, founding members Sacha Got and Marlon Magnée, along with Sam Lefévre, Noé Delmas, Cleémence Quélennec, Clara Luiciani, Jane Peynot, Marilou Chollet and Lucas Nunez Ritter — was founded back in 2010, and the-then unknown band managed to hoodwink the French music industry by lining up a DY Stateside tour with only $3,000 euros and their debut EP, Le Podium #1.

After playing 20 gigs across the States, the members of the La Femme returned back to their native France with immense interest from the Parisian music scene. “The industry was like, ‘What the fuck? They have an EP out and they are touring in the US and we don’t know them?” Marlon Magnée told The Guardian. “So the buzz began to start. When we came back to France, it was red carpet. Fucking DIY.”

2013’s full-length debut Psycho Tropical Berlin was a critical and and commercial success, which won a Victoires de la Musique Award while completely reinventing the sound that began to win them attention. Building upon a rapidly growing internationally recognized profile. La Femme’s sophomore album, 2016’s Mystére was released to praise by Sound Opinions, The Line of Best Fit, The Guardian, AllMusic, BrooklynVegan and a lengthy list of others.

Earlier this year, the acclaimed French act released their first bit of new material in four years with the critically applauded single “Paradigme,” They promptly followed up with “Cool Colorado,” the second single off their forthcoming third album, which will be released through the band’s Disque Pointu and distributed through IDOL.“This album does not correspond to one specific period of our lives,” the band explains. “We have always composed songs all along the journey of the band. Therefore, this album is composed with temporality, it has to be seen as a big piece of a puzzle we create. It is an ongoing process, but all this stays in the range of a concept and remains uncertain.”

Featuring a bombastic horn sample, shimmering guitars, blown out beats, insouciantly sung lyrics in French and English and an infectious hook, “Cool Colorado” sounds indebted to Scott Walker and Ennio Morricone soundtracks while being an “ode to the San Francisco of the 70s, which is so rare and precious to us even if we never lived in this period,” and to Colorado, the first state to legalize cannabis.

The members of La Femme closed out 2020 with “Disconnexion,” the third single off their forthcoming third album — and arguably, the oddest and most difficult to pigeonhole track I’ve come across all year,. Centered around a pulsating, motorik groove reminiscent of Giorgio Moroder’s heyday, a fiery banjo solo, atmospheric electronics, twinkling synth arpeggios, a philosophic soliloquy delivered in a dry, academic French and trippy operatic caterwauling “Disconnexion” is a vivid and surreal fever dream of a song that’s full of “what the fuck” and yet completely danceable.

Speaking of what the fuck, the recently released video for “Disconnexion” continues the surreal and mysterious universe of the preceding videos: initially taking place on a Laugh-In meets Top of the Pops and American Bandstand sort of show, the video quickly morphs into a wild parody of an intellectual TV debate that features a bald and pretentious philosopher type who delivers the song’s wild soliloquy before walking into a phantasmagorical orgy, compete with a hellish clown playing the banjo like he was in a Charlie Daniels tune and a lysergic opera singer wailing away. It’s wild and follows a universe that’s wilder and perhaps more interesting than our own.

New Video: Montreal’s Sophia Bel Releases a Sultry, Genre-Defying Banger

Born to a Quebecois father and a Dutch-American mother, the rising Quebec City-born, Montreal-based pop artist Sophia Bel grew up fascinated by trip-hop and drum ‘n’ bass — during the era of The Spice Girls, Britney Spears, and Christina Aguilera. Bel’s work often finds her unafraid to cover vastly different sonic territory with the focus on capturing the right feeling in that particular moment. Interestingly, for her, pop is one of many aesthetics that she commonly pulls from and not a goal to achieve.

Along with pop, Bel plucks from underground electronic music, skater punk, guitar folk and even Quebecois hippie music to craft a rich, difficult to pigeonhole soundscape that has received praise from Wonderland, The Line of Best Fit, Complex and Clout among a growing list of others.

The rising Quebec City-born, Montreal-based artist has always been slightly out of step with her immediate surroundings. Her black fingernail polish made her the target of bullies at her suburban Quebec City school, earning her the nickname “Princess of the Dead.” Her recently released sophomore EP Princess of the Dead, Vol. II finds Bel reclaiming her identity, while marking her first release through Bonsound Records.

So far two singles have been released off the EP, “You’re Not Real You’re Just A Ghost” and “Voyage Astral.” The EP’s third and latest single “No More” is a slickly produced, breakneck,. meshing of alt pop, trap, house music and contemporary electro pop centered around shimmering synth arpeggios, explosive industrial clang and clatter, skittering beats and Bel’s plaintive and ethereal vocals. The song is written and produced to capture an intense and particular sensation: “I wanted to explore the dark emotions that come when learning to assert oneself, Bel explains. The anger, the bittersweet nostalgia of a lost fantasy. The mysterious tones of this song are paired with a drum ‘n’ bass inspired hook that creates an exhilarating rush of intensity.”

Directed by Jean-François Sauvé, the recently released video for “No More” places Bel into an empty and abandoned warehouse, where she’s imprisoned and watched over by an AI that attempts to capture every vacillating of its subject. The visuals manage to crackle, jolt and lurch with a seemingly brash,. supernatural energy while throwing the viewer into a dark and uncertain universe that kind of feels like our own.

New Video: Acclaimed French Act La Femme Release a Lysergic Romp

La Femme — currently, founding members Sacha Got and Marlon Magnée, along with Sam Lefévre, Noé Delmas, Cleémence Quélennec, Clara Luiciani, Jane Peynot, Marilou Chollet and Lucas Nunez Ritter — was founded back in 2010, and the-then unknown band managed to hoodwink the French music industry by lining up a DY Stateside tour with only $3,000 euros and an EP.

After playing 20 gigs across the States, the members of the La Femme returned back to their native France with immense interest from the Parisian music scene. “The industry was like, ‘What the fuck? They have an EP out and they are touring in the US and we don’t know them?” Marlon Magnée told The Guardian. “So the buzz began to start. When we came back to France, it was red carpet. Fucking DIY.”

2013’s full-length debut Psycho Tropical Berlin was a critical and and commercial success, which won a Victoires de la Musique Award. Building upon a rapidly growing internationally recognized profile. La Femme’s sophomore album, 2016’s Mystére was released to praise by Sound Opinions, The Line of Best Fit, The Guardian, AllMusic, BrooklynVegan and a lengthy list of others.

Earlier this year, the band released their first bit of new material in four years, the critically acclaimed “Paradigme.” Continuing upon that momentum, the applauded Parisian act recently released the cinematic “Cool Colorado,” the follow-up to “Paradigme” and the second single from the band’s forthcoming third album which will be released through the band’s Disque Pointu and distributed through IDOL. “This album does not correspond to one specific period of our lives,” the band explains. “We have always composed songs all along the journey of the band. Therefore, this album is composed with temporality, it has to be seen as a big piece of a puzzle we create. It is an ongoing process, but all this stays in the range of a concept and remains uncertain.”

Featuring a bombastic horn sample, shimmering guitars, blown out beats, insouciantly sung lyrics in French and English and an infectious hook, “Cool Colorado” sounds indebted to Scott Walker and Ennio Morricone soundtracks.“‘Cool Colorado’ alludes to freedom, the insouciance of a journey,” the band explains. “We were somewhere between the states of Utah and Wyoming, during our last American tour, when this ode to the San Francisco of the 70s, which is so rare and precious to us even if we never lived in this period, came to us.” The band adds, “Colorado is the first American state which legalized cannabis, this is where the line ‘And I smoke in the streets without stress’ comes from/ This song is also related to the Beatnik spirit, to the literature of Kerouac. Do you remember the Magic Bus? It was going from Europe to Kathmandu on a now-mythical hippie trail.”

Co-directed by the members of La Femme and Aymeric Bergada du Cadet, the recently released video for “Cool Colorado” is a psychedelic romp that brings American Bandstand, T.A.M.I. Show, Top of the Pops and the Playboy mansion to mind. “This is a sort of psychedelic mass parodying the cliché of the ‘teen idol’ in the way of Brian Jones or Swan from Phantoms of the Paradise. Like a pastiche of a past period of time,” the members of La Femme explain.

New Video: Norway’s Pom Poko Releases A Mischievous, Gender-Bending Visual for Grungy “Like A Lady”

Deriving their name from one of the more unusual films ever released by Japanese animation studio Studio Ghibli, Pom Poko is a rising Norwegian act — Ragnhild Fangel (vocals), Martin Miguel Tonne (guitar), Jonas Krøvel (bass) and Ola Djupvik (drums) — that can trace their origins back to 2016 when the members of the band met while they were studying jazz at Trondheim Music Conservatory, And as the story goes, the members of the rising Norwegian quartet bonded over their mutual desire to play punk rock at a literature festival, rather than jazz.

Individually, the members of Pom Poko have publicly cited a wide and eclectic array of influences including Oumou Sangare, Ali Farka Touré, Vulfpeck, Palm, KNOWER, Hella, Death Grips, Jenny Hval and Nick Drake among others. Interestingly, the rising Norwegian act has firmly established a sound and approach that defies easy description or categorization. “We’ve all done lots of improvised music in the past, and I think that shapes the way we play, even though the tunes are not improvised,” the band explained in press notes. “We like when new and strange things happen in an old song, and that music can change over time by being played live, because that removes predictability and the ‘recipe’ that some genres of music have.”

Last year’s full-length debut Birthday was released to praise from Interview Magazine, The Line of Best Fit, The Independent, Clash Magazine, DIY Magazine and NME, who picked Pom Poko as one of the acts to watch out for in 2019. Adding to a growing national and international profile, the album received airplay on BBC Radio 6, as well as Norwegian Grammy (Spellemannprisen) Award and Nordic Music Prize nominations.

Building upon the growing momentum of the past year or so, the rising Norwegian quartet’s Marcus Forsgren-produced sophomore album Cheater is slated for a January 15, 2021 release through Bella Union Records. Written during a rather prolific and busy period that saw them release a one-off singles “Leg Day” and “Praise,” Cheater reportedly finds the band further developing the sound that has won them national and international acclaim. But the major difference between Birthday and Cheater is that the latter’s material wasn’t road-tested before they went into the studio to record it. ”That meant we had to practice the songs in a more serious way, but it also meant the songs had more potential to change when we recorded them since we didn’t have such a clear image of what each song should/could be as the last time,” Pom Poko’s Ragnhild Fangel explains.

“I think it’s very accurate to say that we wanted to embrace our extremes a bit more. In the production process, I think we aimed more for some sort of contrast between the meticulously written and arranged songs and a more chaotic execution and recording but also let ourselves explore the less frantic part of the Pom Poko universe,” Fangel says of the differences between Birthday and Cheater. “I think both in the more extreme and painful way, and in the sweet and lovely way, this album is kind of amplified.”

Earlier this year, I wrote about breakneck album single “My Candidacy.” Centered around the classic grunge rock song structure of alternating saccharine quiet verses and arena rock choruses, “My Candidacy,” evokes the urgently swooning rush of new love. According to the band “the song itself is about the wish to be able to believe in unconditional love, even though you know that there probably is no such thing. We, at least, believe in unconditional love for riffy tunes with sing-song choruses.”

Cheater’s latest single “Like A Lady” continues a run of infectious, grunge-like material featuring saccharine verses delivered with a brash coquettishness paired with blistering, power chord-driven, mosh pit friendly choruses. Interestingly, the song finds the band balancing mischievous levity with a brooding and probing seriousness.

“’Like A Lady’ was one of the first songs we wrote for the album – we started writing it in a cabin near Oslo and finished it in Piemonte in Italy, where we also started recording it,” the members of Pom Poko explain in press notes. “The whole song actually started with a long, jam-like sort of noise-rock intro, but when it was time to record it our friend/engineer/co-producer Marcus Forsgren suggested more of a Breeders/grungy intro that we just went with on the fly. The lyrics for the song slowly grew out from just jamming together, and are about what makes, or what one thinks makes, a woman, what even being a woman means, and it’s also a kind of tribute to all the different ways of being a woman that are out there.”

Directed by Marin Håskjold, the recently released video for “Like A Lady” stars Desiree Bøgh Vaksdal, Lærke Grøntved, Josephine Kylén Collins, Ann-Christin Kongsness and the members of Pom Poko subverting gender roles and rules in a way that points out their utter ridiculousness — and how gender roles deny one’s individuality.

New Video: Nicolas Michaux Releases a Slinky and Brooding Meditation on Economic Anxiousness and Uncertainty

I’ve written a bit about, Brussels-born singer/songwriter, guitarist and producer Nicolas Michaux over the past couple of months. Currently splitting his time between Brussels and Samsø, Denmark, Michaux, who writes and sings in both English and French, has received attention across Europe for crafting as sound that features elements of French chanson, 60s British rock and early New Wave, guided by a distinctly personal spirit and centered around lush and textured production.

Michaux’s sophomore album Amour Colére (which translates into English as Love Anger) is slated for a Friday release through Capitane Records. The album continues the Belgian artist’s ongoing collaboration with Morgan Vigilante — and as you may recall, Michaux and Capitane Record have released three singles off the album to rapturous critical applause: “Harvesters,” which was praised by The Line of Best Fit, “Nos Retrouvallies.” a lush and plaintive song that touches upon classic French chanson themes of love, grief, separation and reunion (either in this world or in the afterlife) and “Parrot,” arguably the album’s funkiest song, which sounds as though it drew influence from Fear of Music-era Talking Heads and Afro pop, while discussing the alienation and paralysis many of us feel in the midst of a morally bankrupt, stupid, cruel world that robs people of their humanity and decency.

“Enemies,” Amour Colére’s fourth single is a slinky and brooding New Wave number featuring shimmering reverb-drenched guitars, a sinuous bass line and a taut four-on-the four that subtly nods at Tom Petty’s “Refugee” but centered around a familiar (and age-old) economic and career-based anxiety and frustration. Much of our existence is deterministic and influenced by larger (and highly indifferent) forces — and the song points that out with a steely-eyed clarity. Interestingly, “Enemies” is influenced by the work of French sociologist Bernard Friot, a historian of social security and advocate for lifetime salary with the song finding Michaux reflecting upon Friot’s work and his own financial situation.

“When you turn 30 and have a child, being broke becomes less and less fun,” Michaux says in press notes. “At the time of writing, we were looking for a place to live and the violence of the housing market took me by the throat. In writing about slavery, Marguerite Yourcenar said that a regime is often most excessive in its cruelty and injustice in its last days. I sometimes get the impression that it’s the same kind of historical scenario we are currently experiencing with the slow agony of capitalism.”

Directed by Thomas de Hemptinne and Nicolas Michaux, the recently released video for “Enemies” is brooding, surreal and impressionistic visual that captures the anxious uncertainty, the loneliness and fear of both the musicians, who worked together during pandemic-related lockdowns and simultaneously that of the viewer.

New Audio: Acclaimed Norwegian Act Pom Poko Release an Exuberant and Breakneck New Single

Deriving their name from one of the more outre films ever released by Japanese animation studio Studio Ghibli, Pom Poko is a rising Norwegian quartet — Ragnhild Fangel (vocals), Martin Miguel Tonne (guitar), Jonas Krøvel (bass) and Ola Djupvik (drums) — that can trace their origins back to 2016 when the members of the band met while they were studying jazz at Trondheim Music Conservatory, and bonded over their desire to play punk rock at a jazz gig at a literature festival.

Interestingly, the individual members of the rising Norwegian act have publicly cited a wide and eclectic array of influences on their sound and approach, including Oumou Sangare, Ali Farka Toure, Vulfpeck, Palm, KNOWER, Hella, Death Grips, Jenny Hval and Nick Drake among others. And as a result, the act has managed to establish a sound and approach that defies easy description or categorization. “We’ve all done lots of improvised music in the past, and I think that shapes the way we play, even though the tunes are not improvised,” the band explained in press notes. “We like when new and strange things happen in an old song, and that music can change over time by being played live, because that removes predictability and the ‘recipe’ that some genres of music have.”

Last year’s full-length debut Birthday received praise from the likes of Interview Magazine, The Line of Best Fit, The Independent, Clash Magazine, DIY Magazine and NME, who picked the band as one of the acts to watch out for in 2019 — and with the breakneck “My Blood,” a track that possessed elements of math rock, punk rock and indie rock was a great example of their wildly inventive, exuberant sound. Adding to a breakthrough year, the band also received airplay on BBC Radio 6 while landing Norwegian Grammy (Spellemannprisen) Award and Nordic Music Prize nods.

Building upon the momentum of last year, the Norwegian quartet’s highly-anticipated Marcus Forsgren-produced sophomore album Cheater is slated for a November 6, 2020 release through Bella Union Records. Written during the same period that produced one-off singles like “Leg Day” and “Praise,” Cheater finds the band further establishing the sound that has won them national and international acclaim — but the major difference between the two is that Cheater’s material wasn’t road-tested before the band went into the studio.”That meant we had to practice the songs in a more serious way, but it also meant the songs had more potential to change when we recorded them since we didn’t have such a clear image of what each song should/could be as the last time,” Pom Poko’s Ragnhild Fangel explains.

“I think it’s very accurate to say that we wanted to embrace our extremes a bit more. In the production process, I think we aimed more for some sort of contrast between the meticulously written and arranged songs and a more chaotic education and recording but also let ourselves explore the less frantic part of the Pom Poko universe,” Fangel says of the differences between Birthday and Cheater. “I think both in the more extreme and painful way, and in the sweet and lovely way, this album is kind of amplified.”

Cheater’s latest single “My Candidacy” finds the act managed to walk a tightrope between breakneck mosh pit friendly punk, centered around enormous power chords and saccharine sweet verses. Featuring the classic grunge rock alternating loud, quiet, loud song structure, the song explodes with an unpredictable, brash and girlish coquettishness while evoking the swooning rush of love. According to the band “the song itself is about the wish to be able to believe in unconditional love, even though you know that there probably is no such thing. We, at least, believe in unconditional love for riffy tunes with sing-song choruses.”

New Video: Brussels’ Nicolas Michaux Returns with the Incisive and Funky “Parrot”

Nicolas Michaux is a Brussels-born singer/songwriter, guitarist and producer, who currently splits his time between Brussels and Samsø, Denmark. Writing and singing material in both English and French, Michaux has received attention for crafting a sound that meshes elements of French chanson, 60s British rock and early New Wave, guided by a distinctly personal spirit and centered around lush and textured production. 

Earlier this year, Michaux released “Harvesters, the first bit of original material from the Belgian artist since 2016’s À la vie à la mort to critical praise from from  The Line of Best Fit. Building upon the momentum of “Harvesters,” Michaux released “Nos Retrouvallies.”  Continuing his ongoing collaboration with Morgan Vigilante, the lush and plaintive track touches upon classic French chanson themes of love, grief, separation and reunion — either in this world or in the afterlife — in a way that’s simultaneously charming and heartbreaking. 

Both “Harvesters” and “Nos Retrouvailles” will appear on Michaux’s forthcoming album Amour Colére, which is slated for a September 25, 2020 release through Capitane Records. Amour Colére’s third and latest single “Parrot” is a long-time staple of the Belgian artist’s live set — and it may arguably be the funkiest song off the forthcoming album. Centered around a strutting bass line, stuttering four-on-the-floor and  shimmering and looping guitar lines, “Parrot” recalls Fear of Music-era Talking Heads and Afro pop. But at its core the song talks about the alienation and paralysis that many of us feel in the midst of a morally bankrupt, stupid, cruel world, of a globalized economy that exploits and destroys everything in its path, of a global mass media and so on. “It’s a frontal attack against the conformist and cowardly part that lies in us all,” Michaux says of the song. 

Directed by visual artist Yoann Stehr, the recently released video for “Parrot,” is an  montage of newsreel images taken from the Internet, looped and edited in time to the song’s infectious groove. In many ways, the video can conceivably be titled “2020 In Your Face” or “The End of Our World as We Know It” but the key thing is that it’s an unsettling juxtapositions of familiar images in which the dominant figures of our world — the heads of state, the capitalists, the police officers — have their penchant for greed, destruction and exploration revealed to all. Of course, a new guard that includes Yellow Vests, BLM, feminists, ecologists an da host of others have risen up to combat the old ways and bring about a new way, saving what can still be saved. It’s desperate times y’all but on occasion there’s still hope that right and goodness could win. 

Throughout a significant portion of this site’s 10+ year history, I’ve managed to spill a lot of virtual ink covering the Umea, Sweden-born and based, singer/songwriter and cellist  Cajsa Siik. Since the release of her full-length debut, 2012’s Contra, the JOVM mainstay has released two more albums, including 2017’s DOMINO, an EP and a handful of attention-grabbing singles — and she’s released much of that work to critical praise from a number of internationally known media outlets including Q Magazine, The Line of Best Fit and NYLON, as well as airplay on BBC Radio 6. Building on a growing profile, Siik went on a European tour with Mitski to support DOMINO, which she followed up with headlining shows in Berlin and London.

Siik’s fourth full-length album will be released in two parts during Fall 2020 and Winter 2021. “Gate Keeper,” the album’s second single is a slow-burning and atmospheric track featuring whirring and wobbling synths and Siik’s plaintive vocals. And while seemingly easygoing, the song is centered around uneasy tension that feels familiar — particularly if you’ve been in love and have had to started anew.

“‘Gate Keeper’ is one of the key songs on the album. Like a little backbone,” the JOVM mainstay explains. “The melody wrote itself and has an ease about it, yet the lyrics is all about tension and resistance. I guess it’s about the art of trying to be there for someone else. Still be there for yourself. To be someone to count on in life and to trust, despite all your destructiveness and flaws. Maybe it’s when you dare to accept the shit that you carry around that you can fully be there and be loved? When you stop ignoring what scares you the most.”

Rydell · Three Wise Monkeys

With the release of her debut single, Vienna-based singer/songwriter Kimberly Rydell, best known as Rydell, exploded into the international scene, as her debut received praise from Complex and The Line of Best Fit, as well as landing on Spotify’s Fresh Finds: The Wave playlist.

Building upon a rapidly growing profile, the Vienna-based singer/songwriter recently released GoodBrain-produced debut EP Stained Notes. The EP’s material came from a fluid writing process in which they committed each element straight to the final recording as soon as it was written. “Every idea led to another and another and another. It felt like the more dense it became, the better. What started with guitar and vocals, was then constructing and seating a new orchestra member every 15 minutes,” Rydell recalls in press notes. Additionally, the rising Vienna-based singer/songwriter paid particular attention to the way the material’s instrumentation influenced her thoughts and emotions, making sure that her lyrics were carefully intertwined with the arrangements.

The EP”s first single “Three Wise Monkeys” was coincidentally, the first song of the sessions that GoodBrain and Rydell wrote together. Starting off with Rydell’s soulful vocals and strummed acoustic guitar, the song slowly builds up intensity with soaring organ flourishes, a gospel-like backing choir, thumping and propulsive snare drum, the song is thematically centered around the old proverb of the three wise monkeys — hear no evil, see no evil, speak no evil. But at its core, the song is an earnest and urgent call to listeners to open their eyes, ears, months and hearts at a time of monstrous evil and inequality that sonically manages to nod at Daptone Records and JOVM mainstay Hannah Williams and The Affirmations.