I’ve been reading a lot recently about how various musical formats attract a different demographic. CDs are more popular with an older audience, vinyl primarily by males, streaming with a younger audience. There’s also a plethora of internet radio stations catering for just about every musical taste. At one time radio stations and record labels were the gatekeepers of what we got to hear, but with modern technology, the internet, and the rise of the music blog; niche musical acts can now raise an international profile quite quickly, something that otherwise may have taken years of touring.
But it can be difficult for an artist to gain attention when there is so much good music out there. We all know of a singer or band that deserved greater success and recognition yet for one reason or another it didn’t happen. Lack of financial or widespread success should never be taken as a judgement on the musical worth of an artist however. It’s an important metric for judging how well an artist connects with a wider public, allows them to carry on making music, but ultimately it’s all about the art of music.
Let’s celebrate some talent, shall we?
Wash Us Away is a classy track from Brooklyn based brother-sister duo Paperwhite – it’s from their upcoming third EP and on the evidence of this track it promises to be something special. The track can comfortably sit the band alongside the likes of Avec Sans, CHVRCHES and Empathy Test as purveyors of quality electro-pop.
From Brooklyn to Boston, next up we have Basseah and Goethite Glitch-up. It rolls along in its own musical universe – a place where a more experimental version of Daft Punk filters their sound through layers of 8-bit, psychedelic samples and lots of bass.
UK electro-punk legends tunnelmental return with Barely Holding On – the 2nd single from their new LP. It’s a heady mix of trip hop, dub, rap, punk and political consciousness done in their own unique and magical style. The track has a real hypnotic quality to it that draws you in and takes over your mind.
Dancing In The Smoke is another barnstormer from Actress who describes the track as being about “that moment in the club, in the side room which is less habituated where the music is more diffused from the main club, smoked out and disorientating”. It’s dance music to listen to – you’re not going to hear this at your local mainstream party but if this is playing somewhere, you’ll know you are somewhere good!
Prayers by Jen Gloeckner is from her upcoming release VINE and is as much piece of art as a song. Gloeckner’s voice is just amazing – reminiscent of Marianne Faithfull and Nico. On Prayers it features like another instrument, weaving its way in and out of a haunting electro rock melange of emotions.
Los Angeles artist/producer Elohim’s most recent release is Skinny Legs and on it she takes synthpop and gives it a good shake, producing a sound that is cutting edge yet accessible; her vocal style and production tricks all creating a track that is mesmerising and captivating.
The wonderful YELLE have delighted us with Interpassion: a track that skips between English and French language vocals over a lovely mix of minimal beats and samples to create a hook laden synthpop number which is firmly within that great French tradition of slightly tongue in cheek, yet upbeat and accessible sounding pop.
I mentioned Empathy Test earlier in this piece and here they are with Bare My Soul – the track continues their run of top quality, anthemic electropop with a deeply emotional twist. The title gives you a hint as to the lyrical content. The band say the people mentioned in the song are real, from Issac Howlett’s past. The track is a taster for their album due to be released in June, for which the band are raising funds via PledgeMusic.
With New Preset, transatlantic duo Djustin continue their run of classy synthpop tracks. Johan Angergård and Rose Suau have known each other for a long time and this song seems to play to their strengths and it’s hard to believe their creative process is completed almost totally online. The track is from their upcoming album Voyagers which will be released via Sweden’s Labrador Records this coming May.
Last up is Carface and Whitelines – can’t tell you much about them other that the track is from their upcoming album Plastic God. The song has a great feel to it, with hints of Purity Ring and Tegan & Sarah. It’s all booming basslines, a driving drumbeat and soft vocals. It’s five plus minutes of electronic heaven.
And that’s it for another week. Hope you all have a great week and we’ll be back with more goodies in seven days!