My gigging quota suffered this week, but I did make it to one in the end – even if it was one I was helping promote! As ever, there was talk was about the making and selling of music. One thing I did pick up on was the complete lack of concern about what is being described as the death of the mp3 as a medium to distribute and buy music. Of course it’s not really dead. You can still buy them, it’s the medium of choice/necessity for most people who have iPods and similar. Spotify used them in its early days but has moved on to richer formats, and musicians have never been happy with the way the file strips the track of depth and there’s even evidence that it has a negative effect on how we perceive music. Whilst musicians and the music industry will not mourn the passing of the format, there’s still some life in it and there will continue to be a role for it as long as it is the easiest way for music fans to store music on mobile devices. However, as Spotify and its downloadable functions becomes more affordable and accessible, the day the mp3 gets consigned to a technology museum cannot be too far away. Anyway, here’s some music!
First up this week we have the Miami-native producer, 6oldfinch. He’s been producing electronic music under various monikers for years now but recently released his first full-length album, Not From Here which features the track I’m Still Here. It’s a hard track to pin down, with echoes of downtempo, ambient and house all intertwined with some soulful vocals loops. Check it out for yourselves and see what you think.
UK band Rich List have come up with another moody stormer in Life Seances, which has a pounding heartbeat that puts me in mind of acts like New Order and Hurts. You can listen to the song and its openhearted lyrics or just dance along to the infectious melodies – the song works either way and shows that Rich List are building on the promise they showed with Esha Ness. The band are currently planning the release of the debut album Hold Your Forked Tongue and you can find out more about that here. Like the band says ‘Heartbreak never sounded so good’!
Canadian artist Firewood Poetry sculpts some beautiful soundscapes on Anterior. It’s a driving, brooding number which takes elements of a tribalized form of techno and uses both spoken word and vocal samples taken from samples recorded on a trip to India. It’s interesting, intriguing and very enthralling.
The second single from Bath-based Little Rêd, What Love Is features the most amazing vocals, similar in richness and tone to Robyn or Susanne Sundfør. The track itself is a powerful electro pop number, with Little Rêd describing it as being ‘exploring the early days of a relationship, lingering on confusion and excitement as you are falling in love but not quite settled’. The track has a giddy and immediate euphoria about it, that’s for sure! The track is out now via Seahorse Music.
Staying in the UK we have UK artist DYVR (previously releasing material under the name of Adam Cleaver) and Viridian. With its sometimes dissonant synths, mournful but entrancing vocals and minimal beats, he says the track ‘explores the emotive subject of self-harm and the effects this can have on friends, family and loved ones’. In the process of moving away from his previous post rock/folk sounds, DYVR has discovered a rich seam of emotional electronica.
Caroline Duke is a dark pop singer/songwriter from Stockholm, Sweden. Her debut EP Lovers and Madmen was released in November 2016 and features Everytime You Walk Away. The track has a gothic charm to it and if you can imagine Lana Del Rey crooning epically lush electro torch songs but with a heart full of the broken dreams of Marianne Faithfull, that is only a hint of how good this song is!
Who You Run Too is the debut single from retro-wave band The Bad Dreamers. The track takes its inspiration from the likes of Timecop1983, but runs in a different direction with the same musical ingredients – creating a track that Hall and Oates would die to have written! It’s a fun number, though lyrically it’s all about lost love.
Rosi Golan is an indie singer-songwriter originally from Israel, now residing in LA and Nashville. Over the past few years she has travelled but physically and artistically with her sound departing from its more indie/folk roots to take on a more electronic turn. She showcases that to great effect on Underneath which channels the sweetest of vocals over a classy and textured booming synthpop arrangement.
Toronto duo Winchester are back on our playlist with Throw It Down, which will be featured on their upcoming EP If Time is Not Linear Why Can’t I Forget the Past? It’s a rollicking song, happily pitting elements of electropop with some rock sparring that reminds me a little of The White Stripes, showing that Lauren Austin and Montgomery de Luna can successfully forge a unique and vibrant sound from a varied musical palette.
Rounding up our trip around the world this weekend is the funkified electropop of The Now by Intergalactix. Hailing from Sydney, Australia, longtime friends and collaborators Kristian Attard and Serg Dimitrijevic formed their musical partnership in Los Angeles and have worked on projects with the likes of Jason Mraz, Heart, Earth Wind & Fire, Kelis and Ariana Grande. They let their light shine with The Now, with Prince-like guitar licks, a rhythm that would make Daft Punk envious and a sense of fun that makes the track just right for summer!
See you next weekend!