Tag Archives: Depeche Mode

Weekly Gems 37

Ben Khan – 2000 Angels

Ben Khan

Big news. Ben Khan returns with the announcement of his debut album (hurrah!) and a self-directed dystopian video for spine-tingling new single ‘2000 Angels’.

The album – set for release in the summer – was produced alongside Flood (PJ Harvey, Depeche Mode, Nine Inch Nails) and mixed by Spike Stent (Björk, Frank Ocean), with Ben playing every instrument on the record.

Always with a creative hands-on approach, Ben also plans to launch his new interactive website, The Foundation, which offers an insight into the richness and depth of the album’s story.

Sounds like: Leo Kalyan, Twin Shadow, Jai Paul, JUNGLE, Disclosure, Prince, Blood Orange, Harts, Oyinda, Shy Girls

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OTR – Close Feat Kai Straw

OTR - Close Feat Kai Straw

OTR manages to get the chilled but tense vibe just right with his latest single, ‘Close’, which includes the soulful vocals by Kai Straw.

The 25-year old aerospace engineer-turned-producer uses his mathematical mind as a key component when it comes to his music, producing off-kilter melodies and electronic sounds.

Sounds like: Hotel Garuda, Gryffin, ODESZA, Petit Biscuit, Porter Robinson

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NAVA – Ritual

NAVA

NAVA is the highly energetic project of Persian songwriter Nava Golchini and three other Italian musicians. Visually, NAVA is a mix of horror and fashion inspired by the works of visionary designer Gareth Pugh.

The debut single ‘Ritual’ gives us a glimpse into the NAVA world – full of electro arrangements, tribal instruments and dark metropolitan landscapes.

‘Ritual’ is out now on Factory Flaws.

Sounds like: Nimmo

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Betablock3r – Make You Happy

Betablock3r

It could be 2014 again, and boy it feels good! During your visit, expect luscious vocals, addictive synth drops and and nu-disco undertone. All this, courtesy of Betablock3r and the new single ‘Make You Happy’.

It is the first single off their debut EP Monolith, out now.

Sounds like: Goldroom, Chromeo, RAC, Nightdrive

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Tanners – Holy Water

Tanners

It wouldn’t be a decent weekly gems feature without some pop in there. This week Tanners is the chosen one.

Tanners is the moniker of New York City-based songwriter and producer Tanner Peterson. Leading the way for women in creative music tech, Tanners has also spoken at TEDxTeen.

Inspired by her childhood love for the beach, ‘Holy Water’ celebrates the beauty and electricity born from allowing yourself to be completely vulnerable and enveloped by the ocean. “It’s a thank you song to the ocean for teaching me to embrace vulnerability,” Tanners says of the track.

Sounds like: Shura, Monogem, Ronika, Jessie Ware

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Young Sierra – Next To You

Young Sierra - Next To You

Meet emerging alt-pop trio Young Sierra, who were born from a school friendship, and bonded “over a shared love of low bit-rate Drake mp3s, eighties pop and hot-sauce”.

They have the kind of frantic energy of Arcade Fire and the cheeky nature of The 1975. Naughty.

Sounds like: Arcade Fire, Electric Youth, The 1975, Night Panther, Bad Sounds

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Interview: Solomon Grey

Solomon Grey

Electronic duo Solomon Grey are gearing up to release their sophomore album ‘Human Music’, out on 16 February via Mercury KX Records. The record was mixed by Dave Fridmann (MGMT, Flaming Lips, Tame Impala) and features a full orchestra recorded in Budapest.

We caught up with Tom and Joe…

1. Describe your sound in three words.

Emotive, cinematic, classic (we held to hold back from writing average or something similar).

2. Where did the name Solomon Grey come from?

There was a day of flinging names around, Tom said Solomon Grey (the inspiration for that is another story) and we thought it sounded right. At the time we wanted people to think it was one person. We always enjoyed reviews wrongly thinking Floyd or Gnarls Barkley were one artist.

3. Your music is hugely emotive, and your visuals and live shows, hugely atmospheric. Which comes first when creating music?

We normally talk about the visual aspect of a track once the first few ideas are down. It’s always present in the idea from an early point. Also, atmosphere is vital to how we work with a tune. Always trying to find where a track sits and how to achieve that. We are always discussing and sharing ideas, it’s part of the joys of working as a duo.

4. You toured with Above & Beyond in 2016. What was that like?

Amazing. Performing live on the tour ended up inspiring a lot of how we wrote this latest album. Those venues, the acoustics, the seated audiences. The whole Above and Beyond family were so great to us, we owe them everything. Still can’t quite believe that we played the Hollywood bowl. What a privilege.

5. Your upcoming sophomore album, ‘Human Music’, is out next month, and follows Joe’s extremely difficult journey with his mother. Was this album particularly hard to make?

Joe, “in places. This is hard to explain but it was a very lovely time spending that last summer with Sandy. We were together for the end and it was special. I think the whole point of the album is that from the offset I thought something like this would be as you described it ‘an extremely difficult journey’ but it turned out to be a beautiful celebration of our lives together and an honour and pleasure to be there at the end. There were difficult moments of course but mostly it was a time I will cherish. We were best friends and it was good being there together at the end”. Tom, “Making the album was challenging because of the amount of musical ideas Joe brought but we got through it.”

6. We love new music at Indietronica. What new music are you listening to?

Arctic Lake recorded all their latest tracks next door and we think they are amazing. Msafiri Zawose has an album out called Uhamiaji which we keep playing on the way into work. Also, @iamofficer is recording his second album next door at the moment and we keep humming the melodies on our way home. It sounds beautiful, but he is still working on it so keep a look out for its release.

Sounds like: Aquilo, Heaven 17, Depeche Mode, Ásgeir, Chet Faker, James Vincent McMorrow, Hozier, Lane 8, The National, Son Lux, M83, James Blake, Bon Iver

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Weekly SubmitHub Gems 13

Rae Isla – Mexico

Rae Isla

Our hearts go out to those in Mexico at the moment. This one is for them.

‘Mexico’ is a debut song by Seattle-born Rae Isla, who has a family interest in South America. It features guitarist Lito de la Isla and was produced by Gianluca Buccellati (Tei Shi, Yellerkin).

Rae is donating all of her profits from the sale of the song to Cruz Roja Mexicana (Mexican Red Cross).

Sounds like: Lana Del Rey, Laurel

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Motion Trap – The Movement

Motion Trap

Denver duo, Motion Trap (aka Kyle Williams and Nathan Rogers) release spirited new single, ‘The Movement’, and the synth-rock-pop number does just that. Make you move.

Expect their sophomore album ‘Heavenly Bodies’ out soon.

Sounds like: Depeche Mode, OMD, Future Islands, Roosevelt, Cut Copy

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REFS – Fool

Refs

REFS is the project of Brooklyn-based producer, Zach Lipkins.

Pure emotion and intimacy oozes from his R&B hit ‘Fool’, all perfectly enveloped with fervorous production.

Sounds like: John Legend, Jack Garratt, Klyne

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Nocturnal Tapes – All I Need

Nocturnal Tapes - All I Need

Wow, Nocturnal Tapes have arrived and aren’t we happy they have!

Their new single ‘All I Need’ takes you on a spacial journey of floaty dreamscapes and psychedelia attitudes. It is about that moment when you realise you have everything you need and suddenly the pressure you’ve been putting on yourself can lift.

Sounds like: Kasabian, Tame Impala, Du Tonc, Cut Copy

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Kendall Morgan – Undertow

Kendall Morgan- Undertow

If Lorde decided to dabble in hip hop, this might be the result – ‘Undertow’ by Kendall Morgan.

Kendall grew up in Nashville, and started writing songs as early as she can remember. Her experience in songwriting has led her to working on tracks with Kendrick Lamar and Yo Gotti.

Listen to ‘Undertow’ below.

Sounds like: Lorde, Kacy Hill

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Weekly SubmitHub Features 10

JOHN.K – OT

John.K - OT

We all have to do it. Work overtime. But what if it wasn’t a bummer, but something you wanted to do?

JOHN.K takes a different approach. ‘OT’ is an Autumnal track that is about spending that one extra day with your far away friend.

Sounds like: Sam Smith, Justin Bieber

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REGN – WATR

REGN - WATR

Who is REGN? We’re glad you ask.

REGN (pronounced Reagan) is a Los Angeles-based songstress who has just dropped her latest single, ‘WATR’.

Co-written with Robokid, the song has delicate Nordic-inspired vocals chopped into a romantic format.

It’s out now via Moving Castle.

Sounds like: Dagny, Sigrid

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Martin Luke Brown – Opalite

Martin Luke Brown by Bjorn Franklin

Londoner Martin Luke Brown has seemingly come out of nowhere with a banger of a indie pop track called ‘Opalite’ and he means business!

Speaking of the song, MLB says,

“Opalite as a song began with this hypnotic little drum loop and the words just came out. I write placeholder lyrics all the time and then chip away at them until they’re complete but I pretty much stuck with what rolled on Opalite. It just felt right. It’s about finding hope in something and not wanting to let itgo. Whether you find that hope in superstition or religion or love. Whatever really.”

MLB plays London’s Servant Jazz Quarters tonight and ‘Opalite’ is out now via LAB Records.

Sounds like: Bon Iver, Will Joseph Cook, Dua Lipa, Kyko, Sody, Dan Croll

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courtship. – Tell Me Tell Me

courtship. - Tell Me Tell Me

Well, it’s very sad that summer is over for us here in the UK, but keeping the feeling very much alive is electro pop duo courtship..

They’ve just released their new single, ‘Tell Me Tell Me’, a declaration to not hold emotions back, especially when it comes to those love feelings!

Sounds like: Cut Copy, Van She, Summer Heart, Jagwar Ma, Two Door Cinema Club, MGMT, Passion Pit

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Donkeyboy – Kaleidoscope

Donkeyboy

Goosebumps galore with the new track by Norwegian trio, Donkeyboy.

Driving analogue synths predominate the song, followed by sky-high vocals and a massive chorus. Listen below.

Sounds like: Pnau, Mew, LANY, The 1975

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Sasha – Skin Deep

Sasha

London-based Sasha shares ‘Skin Deep’.

Equally as soft on the electronic side of things as the beautiful ‘Picking Flowers‘, ‘Skin Deep’ is a contemplative track about ways to get over a lover through emotionless actions.

‘Skin Deep’ is out now via Lemon Zen Records.

Sounds like: Lucy Rose, Daughter, Maggie Rogers, The Japanese House, Bon Iver, Fenne Lily

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Loud Forest – Wake Up
Loud Forest - Wake Up

California couple Loud Forest are a force to be reckoned with.

Their new single ‘Wake Up’ is about loving an independent person, who is always slightly out of reach, making it all seem like a dream.

Sounds like: Arcade Fire

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Tailor – Blame

Tailor - Blame

Birmingham-born singer/songwriter Tailor has already written for the likes of , TĀLĀ, Huntar, FTSE and Peking Duk, and his own solo material is pretty decent too.

Bordering on alt-pop and electronic music, Tailor has a knack of discussing both sides of the story. His most recent release is a double-A side single called ‘Disillusion / Blame’.

Whilst ‘Disillusion’ is more upbeat in production, ‘Blame’ is about taking the hit in a relationship to benefit the unit as a whole.

Sounds like: Chet Faker, Francis and The Lights, Toro Y Moi, Lauv, Huntar, Sam Smith

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April Towers – Takes One To Know One

April Towers

This is one of our favourite bands. Nottingham-based April Towers return with a rebellious new number called ‘Takes One To Know One’.

Once again, the duo have cleverly blended new wave sounds with bold, modern electronica.

Expect their debut album ‘Certified Freaky’ (co-produced by Ben Pearce) to be released early next year.

Sounds like: New Order, LCD Soundsystem, Depeche Mode, Cut Copy, Hot Chip, OMD, Pet Shop Boys

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Everything Everything – Can’t Do

Everything Everything

The Everything Everything boys are encouraging you to dance with the brilliant ‘Can’t Do’.

A sound and look we’ve come to expect from the Manchester quartet – synth-driven pop of a cinematic nature with addictive hooks. The video depicts the need to try to fit into what society deems as “normal”.

“Can’t Do” is about trying to bend to the world and fit into it. Nobody is normal, nobody knows what normal is. ‘I can’t do the thing you want’ – we don’t care we just want you to dance.” Jonathan Higgs

It’s the first track to be taken from their forthcoming new album ‘A Fever Dream’ which has been produced by James Ford (Arctic Monkeys, Foals, Depeche Mode), out 18 August on RCA Records.

Sounds like: Editors, Dutch Uncles, Foals, White Lies, Dutch, Wild Beasts

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Playlist: Σtella

Σtella

Σtella

Greek artist, Σtella has just released her highly anticipated sophomore album, ‘Works For You’.

To celebrate, Σtella has put together a playlist for us. Enjoy!

Moscoman, Manfredas – Dévoué (Manfredas Remix)
First time I heard this song I kinda felt like I was tripping, in a good way. I’m happy to have shared the stage with Moscoman once.

Arthur Russell – Springfield
Arthur Russell will always remain a mystery to me. It ‘s music from outer space in a way.

Yello – Oh Yeah
Really don’t know how to comment on this. Just a good listen and a place for phantasies.

Unknown Mortal Orchestra – Multi-Love
“She don’t want to be a man or a woman”. Good for her.

Grace Jones – Pull Up To The Bumper
I love this song so much. It explodes in my head every time.

Julian Casablancas – 11th Dimension
This track takes me back in time, it’s got that heart ache feeling you just can’t miss.

KAYTRANADA – BREAKDANCE LESSON N.1
A DJ and a good friend of mine introduced me to this song by Kaytranada, and now I play it whenever I wanna shake my head a little.

Red Axes, Abrão – Balma (feat. Abrão)
Loving Red Axes this year, they did a show In Athens last month. Good boys.

Jean-Jacques Perrey – Cat In The Night
I sadly found out about Jean Jacques Perrey the day he died, late 2016. This man was a genius and is really worthy to listen to pretty much everything he’s done.

Toro y Moi – Lilly
“This place is up for grabs, I give it to you for free”, that line was stuck in my head for a long time. Really good sound.

Fleetwood Mac – Never Going Back Again – Remastered
The album “Rumours” has been one of my favorite albums ever, but just recently I gave a lot of attention to this track in the album. How sweet.

LA Priest – Lorry Park
LA Priest hit me in the stomach at around 0:50 with that beat, oh man, thanks.

Alan Hawkshaw – Beach Journey
Super fine tune by Mr Alan Hawkshaw. This track takes me places I didn’t know existed.

Vulfpeck – Back Pocket
Bravo, Bravo, Bravo to Volfpeck for this massive funky smart track.

‘Works For You’ is out now via Inner Ear Records and is seriously good. Listen to ‘Way To Go’ below.

Sounds like: Kaleida, Annie Lennox, New Order, Depeche Mode, The Human League, Cash+David, Christine & The Queens

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Born Stranger – Cheating Love (Feat Caitlyn Scarlett)

Born Strangers

Nothing beats a beautiful electro-pop duet.

UK-based Born Stranger (aka Maddox-Jones and Raife Hacking) invited emerging vocalist, Caitlyn Scarlett, to join them in the studio. Just 15 minutes later, the verse and lyrics to ‘Cheating Love’ were created.

Caitlyn explains, “The phrase ‘cheating love’ can be perceived as infidelity, but the undertone I wanted to convey was that of cheating love the same way someone might cheat death, a close shave but ultimately avoided.”

The track is co-produced by Yoad Nevo (Sia, Pet Shop Boys, Goldfrapp).

Sounds like: Prinze George, Sia, The Wombats, Bastille, Major Lazer, Years & Years, M83, Foals, KAPTAN, The Brocks, Tears for Fears, Depeche Mode, Myzica

Born Stranger
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Caitlyn Scarlett
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Tei Shi – Keep Running

Tei Shi by JJ Medina

Tei Shi by JJ Medina

Tei Shi is back!

The Agostina Gálvez-directed video for ‘Keep Running’ by the Brooklyn based songstress oozes sex appeal and instantly takes us back to that Flake advert from the 80’s, but this time it’s a mic and not a chocolate bar.

Tei Shi’s debut album, ‘Crawl Space’, is out 31 March on Downtown/Interscope Records.

Sounds like: ASTR, Tinashe, Shura, Claire, Ballet School, VÉRITÉ, La Roux, Ronika, Kitten, Depeche Mode, Lykke Li, FKA Twigs, Rilo Kiley, Dominique

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Playlist: Du Tonc

Du Tonc

Du Tonc

The Du Tonc disco boys have finally put together a playlist for us!

Du Tonc are still one of our favourites, which is handy as their new single, ‘Wonderland’ (which also features on the playlist), is one of their favourites too.

V – La Nouvelle Epoque
It’s pretty apparent we love the 80’s, can’t get enough of this gem. Modern 80’s vibes (if that makes sense).

Severed Heads – Dead Eyes Opened
If there is one track we’ve love to get the parts for and re work, it’s this.

Beyond The Wizards Sleeve – White Cow (Erol Allan Rework)
We’re big Wizard and Erol fans. This is stunning.

Charlie – Spacer Woman (Vocal)
More 80’s spaced out funkiness.

The Cure – A Forest
Think this tracks still get’s better overtime you listen to it.

Du Tonc – I’m On Fire (Bruce Springsteen Cover)
The only cover we’ve done and possibly our our favourite track.

Tears For Fears – Head Over Heals
Tears for Fears are a big inspiration to us, this track is genius (also featured in a rather awesome film).

Johnny Cash – Personal Jesus
Love the Depeche Mode version, but this is just filthy.

Du Tonc – Wonderland
Our favourite song we’ve written.

Midland – Final Credits
Effortless perfect dance floor record.

Sisterhood – Tunnels (Bicep Remix)
Still cane this, get’s better with each listen.

Sounds like: Kavinsky, ROOSEVELT, Summer Heart, MGMT, Day Wave, Washed Out, Yeasayer, Miike Snow, RAC, Goldroom, Set Mo, Luke Million, Neon Indian, Classixx, Holy Ghost!, Blood Orange

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