Tag: Vice Noisey

Last year, I wrote about the Vancouver, BC experimental pop/electro pop act I M U R, and as you may recall, that with the release of 2015’s debut EP Slow Dive, the Canadian trio,  which is comprised of Jenny Lea (vocals, keys), Mikey J. Blige (live production, guitar) and Amine Bouzaher (electric violin, bass) have received attention in Vancouver’s underground scene and elsewhere for a sound that draws from 90s R&B, 90s soul, contemporary electro pop in a rather unique fashion. Interestingly, that EP at one point landed at #5 on Spotify Global Viral Charts.

Building upon a growing profile, the Vancouver-based pop trio has received attention and praise from a number of national and internally known media outlets, including Vice NoiseyExclaim!, Hiphop Canada, Beatroute Magazine and Winniecooper.net, who listed the trio as one of Vancouver’s Top Acts to watching out for in 2016. They’ve also played at a number of festivals across their native Canada such as  Shambhala Music Festival, World Ski and Snowboard Festival,Astral Harvest, Center of Gravity and Rifflandia.

Last year, the members of I M U R released their full-length debut Little Death, and the album further cemented their reputation for crafting material that thematically explores and focuses on extremely dark subjects — namely drugs, booze and sex, as well as the prototypical pop themes of heartache, resiliency and intimacy with a fearless lack of inhibition. Interestingly, the slow-burning “Miss You, Hate You” the first single off the trio’s forthcoming THIRTY33 EP is a deeply intimate account of Jenny Lea’s personal struggles with addition rooted around the duality of her life — both as an addict and as a former addict. As Lea explains, “This was a very important but difficult song for me to write. I’m opening up about a very private part of my life in hopes to connect with others that might be struggling, and to let them know that they’re not alone.”

As the trio mentions via email, the track was self-recorded in the bedroom of their temporary Montreal apartment last spring, and sonically the track is centered around a sparse production consisting of shuffling beats, swirling and undulating electronics paired with Lea’s sultry jazzy and confessional delivery; in some way, the song is late night secret, whispered among friends or lovers — with the understanding that while it won’t get out of that room, that it’ll make you much closer.

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New Video: Bülow Releases a Mischievous Video for Attention Grabbing Single “Not A Love Song”

Megan Bülow is a 17 year-old pop artist, who writes and records as Bülow, and who has spent time living in the States, Canada, the UK and Germany and is currently finishing high school in The Netherlands, making the up-and-coming pop artist a true citizen of the world. And with the release of her debut Damaged, Vol. 1 late last year, an effort that featured attention grabbing singles “Not A Love Song” and “Like This Guy” and “Lines,” Bülow became a viral sensation as those tracks have amassed several million streams, cracking the Spotify Global Viral charts, and receiving praise from the likes of NME, Vice Noisey, Pigeons and Planes and this site. 

Now, as you may recall “Not A Love Song” is an incredibly self-assured and sultry track that features Bülow’s smoky crooning over a slick and hyper contemporary production consisting of arpeggiated synths, tweeter and woofer rocking beats and finger snaps, and unsurprisingly, from this track Bülow remind some of pop contemporaries like Phoebe Ryan, Chelsea Lankes, Sofi de la Torre,  and others, as “Not A Love Song” is centered around a fearless, unvarnished honesty, capturing the messiness, uncertainties and insecurities of a young woman trying to maneuver the complexities of love, her impending adulthood and growing sense of independence. In fact, as Bülow explained to me via email, “‘Not A Love Song’ is about the excitement of meeting someone for the first time. Initially, it feels so new and overwhelming good, but I eventually decided I wasn’t ready for that commitment. Or at least, that’s what I told myself. You can’t let lust fool you. Be honest with yourself. If it’s not meant to be, it’s not mean tot be; but that doesn’t mean you can’t have fun!”

The recently released video for the song was shot in Berlin and captures, the up-and-coming pop artist in a rather natural setting, capturing a young woman who can be equally confident, awkward, vulnerable and mischievous. As Bülow says of the video treatment, “I wanted this video to be natural, just being myself in a fearless city. Berlin is a special place to me.”

New Video: WINDHAND Releases Ominous Visuals for Doom-Laden New Track “Old Evil”

Currently comprised of Dorthia Cottrell (vocals), Garrett Morris (guitar), Parker Chandler (bass) and Ryan Wolfe (drums), the Richmond, Virginia-based doom metal band WINDHAND was founded back in 2009, and with their 2010 practice space, two track CD, the band quickly garnered comparisons to Electric Wizard, The Devil’s Blood and Black Sabbath.  2012 saw the release of the doom metal band’s self-titled debut, which became an underground hit and sold out of multiple vinyl pressings within a few months. 

By the following year, the Virginia-based doom metal band signed to Relapse Records and after a busy touring schedule, they collaborated with fellow Richmond-based band Cough on a split single “Reflection of the Negative,” which was released to critical praise from the likes of Pitchfork and others. Building upon the growing buzz around them, the members of WINDHAND released their sophomore effort Soma to critical applause and attention from Stereogum, Spin, LA Weekly, Revolver, Invisible Oranges, MetalSucks, Metal Injection, Rolling Stone and NPR — with Pitchfork naming the album as one of the third best metal releases of the year. Adding to a growing profile, the band also spent the course of 2013 and 2014 touring throughout North America, Europe and Australia with Sleep, High on Fire, Dead Meadow and Kvelertak, as well as playing a number of major festivals including Roadburn, SXSW, Scion Rock Fest, Day of the Shred and Maryland Deathfest, before ending that period with a split album with Swedish doom metal act Salem’s Pot, an effort praised by Noisey. 

2015 saw the release of the band’s Jack Endino-produced, third full-length album, Grief’s Internal Flower and unsurprisingly, the album, which featured album singles Crypt Key.” and “Two Urns” further cemented the Richmond, VA-based  reputation for crafting punishing, sludgy, and murky dirges with enormous power chords. 

Now, it’s been some time since I’ve personally written about WINDHAND but interestingly enough, they’ll be releasing a split album with fellow Virginians Satan’s Satyrs, which Relapse Records will release in February 2018, and the split album’s first single is the blistering, forceful and mosh pith worthy “Old Evil” which prominently features thundering drumming, some impressive, psych rock meets metal god-guitar work and soaring, anthemic hooks that belie the lurking evil within the song. 

Edited by by Jordan Vance, the recently released video for “Old Evil” features footage of the band shot as though it were filmed don film negatives, superimposed over equally ominous footage of nuns by Stonehenge, mountains that seem to undulate before the viewers eye, collapsing icecaps and the like. 

New Video: Up-and-Coming Austrian Pop Duo Leyya Releases Quirky and Surreal Visuals for Their Genre-Bending Single “Drumsolo”

With the release of their debut single Spanish Disco, the Vienna, Austria-based indie electro pop duo Leyya, comprised of Sophie Lindinger and Marco Kleebauer quickly received both national and international attention, thanks to the success of viral hit single “Superego,” which received nearly 3 million streams on Spotify. Adding to a growing profile, the duo played some of the European Union’s biggest music festivals including The Great Escape, Liverpool Sound City, Tallinn Music Week, Primavera Sound, Reeperbahn Festival, Iceland Airwaves and a headlining set at Popfest. Along with that the duo have received airplay on Huw Stephens‘ and Phil Taggart‘s BBC Radio 1 shows and Lauren Laverne‘s BBC Radio 6 show, been playlisted on Germany’s Radio 1, as well as praise from Pigeons and Planes, Wonderland Magazine, Clash Magazine, Konbini, The 405 and Consequence of Sound among others.

The duo’s highly anticipated sophomore effort Sauna is slated for a January 26, 2018 release, and the album’s latest single “Drumsolo” will further cement their reputation for crafting ambient and moody electro pop but while revealing that the duo have expanded their sound quite a bit, as the song finds the duo with a subtly layered sound nodding at hip-hop, R&B and jazz in a way that reminds me of BRAIDS andSoftspot but with a coquettish and swaggering self-assuredness.

“‘Drumsolo’ is one of our favourite tracks of the new album, ” the duo told NOISEY. “On the one hand, it’s very complex (at one point, it doesn’t even make sense ‘music theoretically’). But, on the other hand, the melody is very catchy, so you don’t notice its quirkiness; that’s what we always wanted our tracks to be like: different layers to discover depending on the listener’s mood.”

Directed by All Most Famous, the recently and released and brightly colored video possesses a surreal, Dadaesque dream-like nature as it features an Oscar the Grouch meets car wash brush machine-like character rocking out on the drums in a variety of settings, bubbles, balloons that are inflated and popped, fast-forwarded and rewound scenes, colored water and more. And while initially, it may strike some viewers as some insane and mischievous fashion commercial that they can’t quite comprehend, it also manages to further emphasizes the song’s overall quirkiness. 

New Video: The Psychedelic Visuals and Jangling Sounds of Up-and-Coming London-based Act Tempesst

Comprised of siblings Toma Banjanin (vocals, guitar) and Andy Banjanin (drums), along with Eric Weber (guitar) and Kane Reynolds (keys), the Australian-born, London-based members of Tempesst have had what may be a breakthrough year: they’ve made appearances at some of the UK’s most renowned showcases, including The Great Escape, NME Awards, Live at Leeds; several festivals, including Bushstock, Southsea Fest and Hackney Wonderland; as well as opening sets for Mystery Jets, The Veils, Albert Hammond, Jr., GUM and The Temper Trap. And with a growing profile, the band released their debut EP Adult Wonderland to critical applause from Noisey, DIY, NME, Drowned in Sound, The Line of Best Fit, Clash Magazine and airplay from Lauren Laverne’s BBC Radio 6 show and Maz Tappuni’s Radio X show, Communion Presents. 

And from Adult Wonderland’s latest single “Feel Better,” the up-and-coming London-based band specialize in a jangling, 70s AM radio-inspired psych folk with enormous, and anthemic hooks and some impressive guitar work that’s reminiscent of Tame Impala and Drakkar Nowhere, complete with a deceptively easy-going breeziness that belies the material’s craft. Interestingly enough, the song bristles with an underlying bitter frustration.  As the band’s Toma Benjamin explains in press notes, “I wrote ‘Feel Better’ about the mindless rhythm of working all week and then partying all weekend. A lot of my friends and I have done it for years. Each month just blurs into a series of highs and lows. I guess I wrote this song about realising the monotony of it all. It’s actually a bit sad when you think about it.” 

Directed by the band’s Andy Banjanin, the recently released video for “Feel Better” follows the band members through a kaleidoscopic and almost Biblical journey of self-discovery in which they eat some forbidden fruit, descend and ascend from a metaphorical hell and metaphorical heaven. And fitting with the overall aesthetic, the video is hot in a fashion that nods at movies from the early 70s. 

With the release of their debut single Spanish Disco, the Vienna, Austria-based indie electro pop duo Leyya, comprised of Sophie Lindinger and Marco Kleebauer quickly received both national and international attention, thanks to the success of viral hit single “Superego,” which received nearly 3 million streams on Spotify. Adding to a growing profile, the duo played some of the European Union’s biggest music festivals including The Great Escape, Liverpool Sound City, Tallinn Music Week, Primavera Sound, Reeperbahn Festival, Iceland Airwaves and a headlining set at Popfest. Along with that the duo have received airplay on Huw Stephens‘ and Phil Taggart‘s BBC Radio 1 shows and Lauren Laverne‘s BBC Radio 6 show, been playlisted on Germany’s Radio 1, as well as praise from Pigeons and PlanesWonderland MagazineClash Magazine, Konbini, The 405 and Consequence of Sound among others.

The duo’s highly anticipated sophomore effort Sauna is slated for a January 26, 2018 release, and the album’s latest single “Drumsolo” will further cement their reputation for crafting ambient and moody electro pop but while revealing that the duo have expanded their sound quite a bit, as the song finds the duo with a subtly layered sound nodding at hip-hop, R&B and jazz in a way that reminds me of BRAIDS and Softspot but with a coquettish and swaggering self-assuredness.

“‘Drumsolo’ is one of our favourite tracks of the new album, ” the duo told NOISEY. “On the one hand, it’s very complex (at one point, it doesn’t even make sense ‘music theoretically’). But, on the other hand, the melody is very catchy, so you don’t notice its quirkiness; that’s what we always wanted our tracks to be like: different layers to discover depending on the listener’s mood.”

 

 

New Video: The Lysergic Sounds and Visuals of Beaches’ “Arrow”

Comprised of Antonia Sellbach (guitar, vocals), Alison Bolger (guitar, vocals), Ali McCann (guitar vocals), Gil Tucker (bass, vocals) and Karla Way (drums, vocals), the Melbourne, Australia-based psych rock quintet Beaches formed in 2007, and since their formation the quintet have developed an international profile for their critically applauded 2008 self-titled debut and 2013’s sophomore effort She Beats both of which drew from psych rock, shoegaze, prog rock and krautrock — with both albums being shortlisted for their respective years’ Australian Music Prize. 

Second of Spring, the Aussie psych quintet’s third full-length album is slated for a September 8, 2017 release through Chapter Music — and interestingly enough, the album is the first double LP released by an individual artist/band in the label’s history. Recorded in their hometown of Melbourne with producer/engineer John Lee, who has worked with Totally Mild and Lost Animal, and mastered by David Walker, the Melbourne-based psych rockers third album reportedly finds the band expanding upon the sound that won them international praise and attention but with material that emphasizes a jam-like feel.  Now, if you had been frequenting this site earlier this summer, you may recall that I wrote about Second of Spring’s first single “Void,” which featured buzzing power chords with a motorik groove and anthemic hook. And interestingly enough, the track reminded me quite a bit of The Breeders “Last Splash,” Liz Phair‘s “Supernova” and others but with a swirling, lysergic feel; but as the band’s Ali McCann explained to Vice Noisey “‘Void’ is a conversation between two people, who discuss a prolonged absence, a temporary disappearance into a space of emptiness. We wrote ‘Void’ in our rehearsal space in Reservoir (Melbourne) during a prolific period of songwriting. It was produced by John Lee (Phaedra Studios), who also plays synthesiser on this track. Karla and I are on vocals. There is a restrained interaction between them, tempered by the motorik drive of the instrumentation.”

The album’s second and latest single “Arrow” continues in a similar vein as its predecessor as it features buzzing power chords and a chugging, motorik groove and an anthemic hook under-pinned by a breezy, ethereal melody — and while clearly nodding at 90s alt rock, the song subtly nods at 60s psych rock. And fittingly, the recently released music video for the song features some incredibly trippy, psychedelic imagery — including an extended section in which shapes explode and change color and rearrange themselves in front of the viewer, in exact beat to the song, before briefly panning out to show one of the band members standing in front of projection screen or a hand manipulating things. 

New Video: The Moody Visuals for The Away Days “Places To Go”

With the release of their How Did It Start? EP to critical praise both nationally and internationally from the likes of The Guardian, SPIN Magazine,and Noisey, as well receiving airplay from renowned Seattle, WA-based radio station KEXP, the Istanbul, Turkey-based quartet The Away Days quickly established a reputation for being a the forefront of an extremely Western-influenced indie music scene, thanks in part for a sound that’s largely inspired by The Cure, Tame Impala and others. And adding to a growing international profile, the members of the Turkish indie rock quartet have toured across the UK, played at two consecutive SXSW Festivals and have played festival dates opening for Portishead, Massive Attack, Belle and Sebastian and others.

Now, if you’ve been frequenting this site over the past couple of years, you may recall that the Istanbul-based quartet have released a handful of singles that have received international attention — including this site — since the release of their debut EP. However, the band’s long-awaited full-length debut Dreamed at Dawn was released earlier this year, and landed at number 5 on the Turkish album charts, marking it both a commercial success and the highest ever chart position for a Turkish indie rock album. The Turkish indie rock band’s commercial and critical success in their homeland and elsewhere shouldn’t be surprising as Dawn’s first two singles “Less Is More” and “World Horizon” paired atmospheric and moody yet lush instrumentation and ethereally shimming synths with material that thematically and lyrically drew from the band members’ own lives in a society in which their creative desires and efforts are viewed as being suspicious and seditious.

“Places to Go,” Dreamed at Dawn’s third and latest single continues along a similar vein as its two preceding singles as it’s a lush and plaintive song featuring shimming guitar chords played through a bit of reverb and delay pedal, an angular and propulsive bass line, twinkling synths and a rousingly antthemic hook,. and in some way, sonically the song manages to mesh dance floor friendly post-punk, electro pop and shoegazer rock; however, despite the seemingly upbeat tone, the song is a look into their lives and their cohorts as it touches upon the weight their homeland’s young people feel from an oppressive and seemingly capricious regime that demands oppression and a restlessness from the lack of meaningful opportunities.

Interestingly, the recently released music video for the song is based upon a deceptively simple concept of the band performing the song in a dramatically lit studio but throughout there are vivid bursts of animation that explode across the screen.

 

Zak Waters is a Los Angeles, CA-based singer/songwriter, DJ and producer, who has started to grab the attention of the blogosphere with his solo recording project Pretty Sister, a project that specializes in what Waters had dubbed Z Funk, a sound that is equally indebted to Parliament Funkadelic and 90s G-funk hip-hop; but with modern production techniques and a shamelessly frank lyrical sensibility that focuses on things like booty-call texting, long distance love and sexual frustration and so on. And with Waters’ latest single, the sensual come on “Come to L.A.,” you’ll quickly see why the Los Angeles-based singer/songwriter, producer and DJ has received praise from the likes of Vice Noisey, HillyDilly and others as the song consists of a sinuous bass line, silky and cascading organ and keyboard chords paired with Waters’ sultry and effortlessly soulful vocals. Sonically speaking, the song strikes me as being the oversexed lovechild of Rick James and Parliament Funkadelic while fitting in comfortably with the contemporary neo-soul and funk movements that have won over the blogosphere lately.

Lyrically, the song and its narrator is focusing on sexual frustration of his long-distance love not being near — and it’s full of naughty sexual innuendo, double entendres and outright sexual come-ons that will make the listener both blush and get incredibly horny, while being a two-step worthy, slickly produced jam.

 

 

Influenced by The Strokes, The Clash, Haim, Velvet Underground, Courtney Love, Charli XCX and Mazzy Star and comprised of siblings Marika Justad and Miro Justad, and Toby Kuhn, Seattle, WA-based trio Tangerine was formed back in 2012. And in a short period of time, the Seattle-based trio quickly rose to national and intentional prominence from the likes of NME, The Guardian, Vice Noisey, Rookie Mag and others for a sound that draws from 90s alt rock, 80s New Wave, indie rock, R&B and pop; in fact the band’s sound has been compared favorably to the likes of Best Coast, Camera Obscura and Speedy Ortiz — as shimmering guitar chords are paired with tight pop-leaning hooks.

The trio’s latest EP Sugar Teeth was released earlier this year through Swoon Records and the material is reportedly inspired by life on the road as a touring band and the artists they toured with, who coincidentally were major influences on the band — while exploring youthful rebellion, a chaotic and dysfunctional relationship and a wistful nostalgia over faded friendships. And the EP’s second and latest single “Tender” will continue to cement the band’s reputation for shimmering guitar-based surfer rock-leaning pop that sounds as though it draws from The Go-Gos  — complete with a similar bittersweet playfulness wrapped around infectiously pop-leaning hooks.

The band is currently on a rather extensive tour that includes several SXSW sets and a late April NYC area stop at Cake Shop. Check out tour dates below.

Tour Dates
3/16/2016 – Austin, TX @ SCRATCH HOUSE
3/18/2016 – Austin, TX @ Westin Hotel in Downtown Austin
3/20/2016 – Austin, TX @ Spider House (day party)
3/22/2016 – San Diego, CA @ The Hideout
3/24/2016 – Reno, NV @ Holland Project
3/25/2016 – Boise, ID @ Treefort Festival
4/2/2016 – Pullman, WA @ Washington State University
4/16/2016 – Spokane, WA @ Observatory
4/17/2016 – Boise, ID @ Neurolux
4/18/2016 – SLC, UT @ Kilby Court
4/20/2016 – Sioux Falls, SD @ Total Drag Records
4/21/2016 – Des Moines, IA @ Vaudeville Mews
4/22/2016 – Chicago, Ill @ Emporium
4/23/2016 – Detroit, MI @ UFO Factoy
4/24/2016 – Toronto, ON @ Smiling Buddha
4/26/2016 – Providence, RI @ Aurora
4/27/2016 – Boston, MA @ Middle East
4/28/2016 – New York, NY @ Cake Shop
4/30/2016 – Richmond, VA @ Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
5/1/2016 – Raleigh, NC @ Neptune’s
5/2/2016 – Ashevile, GA @ Tiger Moungain
5/4/2016 – Athens, GA @ Georgia Theater , Rooftop
5/5/2016 – New Orleans, LA @ Siberia
5/6/2016 – Houston, TX @ Walter’s
5/10/2016 – Los Angeles, CA @ TBA
5/11/2016 – San Francisco, CA @ Rickshaw Stop
5/12/2016 – Eureka, CA @ Shanty Tavern
5/13/2016 – Portland, OR @ The Know
05/27-30/2016 – George, WA @ Sasquatch Festival