Folk/pop singer Tally Spear shares her new single, ‘City Girl’.
You’d be forgiven for thinking Spear comes from further afield than London, with her fitting take on US-born country with a pop tinge.
Although Spear’s debut EP, ‘Fade To White’, received critical acclaim in the spring of 2018, she knew that something didn’t feel quite right to her. Despite having attracted nearly 200,000 streams for her single Days Like These, Spear decided to take time out.
During the 5 months she spent crafting her new material alongside acclaimed writer/producer MartinHollis (Adele, MarkRonson, TomWalker, TheStaves) at British Grove Studios.
Tally explains, “Something just happened with my taste. I just went through a change of what I was listening to when I was writing. It just became this new sound. I had a very clear vision of what I wanted to do in terms of production.”
The result is ‘City Girl’. Listen below.
Sounds like: Dolly Parton, Harry, Wolf Alice, KT Tunstall
We recently discovered rising pop-star, Harlee and we haven’t been able to get enough of her stunning debut four-track EP, ‘It’s Personal’.
The lead single from the EP, ‘Now I Know’, was written when Harlee was just 14 and explores the feelings that she experienced coming out of her first relationship and the first time she had ever felt pain.
Emphatic electro-pop band WYVE from France share their upbeat debut single, ‘Sunset on the Bay’.
Groovy by nature, WYVE effortlessly bounce between 80’s retro vibes and contemporary drumbeats and sugary synths. Having already made a start on their debut album, we are excited about what’s to come from the musical pioneers.
Anna Pancaldi releases her guitar-driven song, ‘Peace’.
Since working with producer Matt Ingram (Florence & The Machine, Lianne La Havas, Laura Marling), Pancaldi has really got down to business honing her sound and adding more grit to her already heart-felt songwriting skills.
On ‘Peace’, Pancaldi states,
“A challenge at first but now an exhilarating awakening having discovered and then explored the electric guitar. ‘Peace’ is my first ‘foot stomper’ track which I think will surprise listeners who’ve been on the journey with me so far. It feels a bold evolution for me so here we go.”
Sounds like: London Grammar, Adele, Rhye, Birdy, Maiday, Courtney Barnett
Experimenting with vocal chops and melodic riffs, ‘Horizons’ is upbeat and memorable.
Exciting Nashville producer and creator Super Duper has managed to do something unheard of – create a repetitive song that is quite simply addictive, and in no way annoying. Even Super Duper puts it on repeat, and you should too.
The Los Angeles-based pop angel takes control with her defiant anthem ‘This Body’. A song inspired by personal experiences with cat calling and a struggle with an eating disorder, it sends a hugely empowering message.
“One morning, while I was walking to the USC practice rooms on South Figueroa, I got aggressively cat called about my “fat ass.” I’m a fiery person. I talk back. I’m “sassy” and I’m not shy around strangers. I’m typically not someone who is great at “taking the higher road” or letting things go, but in that situation, I felt like a delicate flower. When a man confronts you without batting an eyelash, verbally scrutinizing your body, you feel like nothing. This man was asserting his dominance over me, letting me know that he was entitled to my body — looking, commenting, maybe even touching. So, I went inside the practice rooms with my face red and hot. I grew up in New York City. This was not the first time I had been cat called on a street corner, but for some reason it particularly bothered me that day. It was kind of a perfect storm because I felt like I wanted to yell or cry or something, and I had literally just stepped into a practice room with a piano. I started saying things that I wanted to hear — “I got my power,” “this body is my home” etc. Looking back on that experience, I guess writing the song was my way of getting my power back in the moment.
I recovered from an eating disorder in the summer of 2016, which is when I wrote this song. My whole life I grew up completely buying into the media’s definition of beauty. I thought that I needed to be rail thin (not my body type) and utterly despised any fat on my stomach. I started my first diet around the age of ten, and my battle with food, guilt, and self loathing continued on throughout the next ten+ years. For me, performing “This Body” is a reminder to myself that I’m sexy and I’m beautiful and I have all of my confidence. That’s why I start every show with it. It’s not just like I’m telling these lyrics to other people, but I’m sort of talking to myself as well.
My sophomore year of college, I was extremely lucky in that so many positive elements aligned themselves in my life. I had a boyfriend who loved my body and reassured me while I put on much needed weight and got increasingly healthier. I moved into an apartment with friends who were like family and were more supportive than I could have ever hoped for. That year, I also found the body positivity movement on social media. I read articles and watched videos of women talking about the stuff I had never been able to articulate and would never have felt comfortable articulating. All of these factors in my life came together and really allowed me to grow and to love myself. That kind of opened a door for me and inspired me to write about being a woman in very literal terms.
Honestly, my hope for this song is just that someone, somewhere can listen to it and feel what I feel hearing powerful women talk about loving themselves. When I see a quote that makes smile or a picture of someone owning their body, I feel companionship, knowing that we’re all in it together, and I feel empowered myself. If I can do that for someone else, then I will know I have accomplished something huge.”
Los Angeles native BAUM hits the right notes with her new single ‘Effortless’.
Taking inspiration in the romantic pitfalls of a close friend of the singer-songwriter, who was cheated on by an ex-beau, an “awful dude,” says BAUM, “I saw him do it and it broke my heart.”
BAUM immediately wrote the song after the event – originally a sad song, that soon turned into an angry one,
“I got to the chorus and just got so wildly angry and that tempo change and scream thing came out. I guess I turned the song into how I wanted her reaction to be: empowered, focused more on her anger than her sadness. I wanted her to realize her own strength and self-worth, so I wrote that into the song.”
It’s rare these days that music can hit you hard in your core, but Anna Pancaldi has managed to do that with her piano-led ‘Brother’.
As you would expect, ‘Brother’ covers a highly emotional subject, exploring the reality of loss.
March 3rd – House Concert, Glasgow
March 4th – Hemelvaart Bier Cafe, Ayton
March 7th – Whiskey Bar, Manchester
March 8th – Making Waves, Manchester
March 10th – The Steel Rooms, Brigg
March 17th – House Concert, Essex
March 16th – The Stables, Cricklade
March 18th – The Drawing Room, Chesham
March 19th – Apple Store, Regent Street
March 22nd – The Victoria, London
March 24th – Big Comfy Book Shop, Coventry
March 25th – St Peters on the Waterfront, Ipwich
March 27th -Bespoke Records, Brighton
Sounds like: London Grammar, Adele, Rhye, Birdy, Maiday
Disclosure: I am Leena Ojala’s publicist at the time of writing.
London-based alternative electro pop singer, Leena Ojala, has put together a playlist for us of ten tracks she has come across when listening to new music.
Of the playlist, Leena says, “I have gone for tracks that use varying influences and mix different styles in production.”
Oh Wonder: All We Do
I like the repetitive piano riff and the vocal melody. They create a sad yet beautiful feel for the song. The minimalistic approach makes the song memorable – it’s a case of less is more.
Dominique: Good Girl
I like the guitar hook she uses throughout the track. The hip hop beat underneath and the interesting distortion she uses are interesting giving the track a nice character. Big up for Dominique for creating her own lovely production!
Anevo: Electric Heart feat. Ameria
The unique sound of the different instruments used in the track come across nicely. Every section has different influences: the verse is more electronic and dance-like whereas the chorus is chilled. The different styles used give the track a nice vibe.
KINGDM: Say It Again
I like the use of drums with African influences. There is a soulful vibe going on with the vocals, melody and the piano which give the song a romantic feel.
MRGD: Skin Deep
I like the use of call and response mixed with the nice vocal hooks. The chorus incorporates different feels i.e. reggae rhythm and drum sound, synth piano and vocal hooks. This gives the track an unusual but unique crossover of styles.
XY&O: Low Tide
The minimal strumming and picking of the guitar in the verses gives the track a nice relaxed feel. I like the four to the floor drums in the chorus giving it kind of dancing in the summertime vibe. The vocals with an echo and a delay effect finish the track off nicely.
I like the use of unusual blending of styles and rhythmic influences – the type you find with FKA Twigs. The track has a nice atmosphere, delivered by whispery vocals, hooks, dark piano tones and reverb effects.
Tess: Love Gun
I like the use of middle eastern feel in the track created by the vocal movement and the acoustic guitar. I can see influences of “Inna” here, but there are also elements of R&B, Pop and Hip Hop.
Sounds like: Låpsley, Adele, Rae Morris, YUAR, Micky Blue, London Grammar, Dominique, Amanda Merdzan
Dramatic songstress, Leena Ojala, returns with ‘Little Place’.
Written by Leena Ojala and produced by Benbrick, Aella Jordan-Edge was the obvious choice to direct the video (she also directed the video for Leena’s ‘Why‘).
The video was shot in NYC in freezing temperatures, and explores a young couple’s journey as they grapple with life in a new home, far away from their ‘little place’.
Of the video, Aella explains; “I moved to New York at the age of fifteen, so I knew the feeling well: of being awestruck and overwhelmed in a city that sweeps you up, propelling you forward whether you like it or not.”
Aella’s favourite scene is “the moment on the beach – it represents that frustrating time near the end of a relationship where you’re desperately trying to make it work, fighting the last fight.”
Disclosure: I am Leena Ojala’s publicist at the time of writing.
‘Little Place’ is out today via 51Den and available for purchase on iTunes.
Whilst you’re at it, check out the awesome Saturday, Monday remix.
Sounds like: Låpsley, Adele, Rae Morris, YUAR, Micky Blue, London Grammar, Evvy, Dominique
Acoustic cover guru, Alice Olivia, changes directly and releases new icy, R&B track, ‘Wings Like Yours’.
The song is about love, possession and jealousy.
Olivia has worked with emerging UK producer Lipso, to produce overall quite a minimalist track which is further enhanced by her weightless vocals, all of which have been added to some snappy and gothic percussion.
It is the second release from EP, ‘Wanderlands’.
Sounds like: Jessie Ware, B. Miles, Lyves, Sasha Keable, Monogem, July Child, NÜME