After the success of ‘Afterburns‘ – which came with a quirky personality quiz – the Scottish multi-instrumentalist, Cyrano returns with the final single, ‘Plaster’, taken from his debut four track EP, ‘Consolations’.
Inspired by The National’s Matt Berninger lyrical milieu, Cyrano explains,
“Plaster is probably me at my most vulnerable, but I think that’s why it’s one of my favourite songs I’ve written. The first line “Locke halts; he’s got my head in a river drawn out starting to shiver” describes a moment in counselling where I felt completely broken. Locke is someone I owe a lot to for pulling me through, and Plaster is for anyone struggling and an admission of strength through weakness. As difficult as life can feel, there’ll be a moment where you come through, towel dry and seeing the past in hindsight.”
The EP – co-produced alongside Foals’ Kit Monteith and LukeSmith (FKATwigs, KeatonHenson) – is left-field pop, full of vulnerability, covering topics including anxiety and depression, love and growing older. Listen below.
Continuing to provide a constant stream of excellent releases this year, Glassio returns once again with new, upbeat track ‘One of These Days’.
The new single, lifted off his forthcoming debut LP ‘For The Very Last Time’, is a chilled-out, summertime tune, tinged with electro-pop nuances. Synth arpeggios carry you from verse to verse gracefully, keeping the song upbeat despite its more dark subject matter. In his own words, Glassio says this of his new single;
“I wanted to write a song that could help people who have felt bullied or silenced. Something that could serve as a hopeful, dance-y and optimistic song about feeling accepted whilst getting their message across. Like most of us, I’ve had the misfortune of knowing some pretty awful people in my life. This song is about all of them and me wanting to break away and fully accept myself for who I am.”
Keeping true to his modern style – whilst channelling 70’s soft rock influences – Glassio creates a new space for his sound, taking forward strides by looking back on his love of Paul McCartney is a testament to his musical intelligence, and we can’t wait to see what comes next.
James Blake releases the atmospheric ‘Are You Even Real?’, in partnership with Apple’s Behind The Mac campaign. Another contender to the evergrowing back catalogue of comforting masterpieces from the British producer and multi-instrumentalist.
We all know a Daniel, or perhaps we even are one – the one that gets “lost in the sauce, stoned, lost in some existential fear or lost his way in some VR game”, yet has so much to prove. Declan McKenna gives us a delicious taste of his forthcoming album, ‘Zeros’.
Sounds like: HUNNY, Sea Girls, Peach Pit, The Night Café, Chaz Cardigan, The Beatles, Circa Waves, The Magic Gang, Vistas, Love Fame Tragedy
Refreshing alt-pop artist Connie Constance bares all and dives into “an ocean of narcotics” in new single ‘James’, summing up how we all want to feel and act right now – to get a bit squiffy and then crawl back to bed.
Sounding particularly Glass Animals, and more instrumentally upbeat than previous releases, duo Tom Higham and Ben Fletcher – aka Aquilo – return after a two-year hiatus with the ‘Sober’ EP, featuring ‘Moving On’.
Singer and producer MAX RAD takes a positive stance with new single ‘It’ll All Be Fine’. Comparing the track to an out-of-body experience, he advises to look at the bigger picture, and stop internalising. Wise words.
Sounds like: Tash Sultana, Foals, Chet Faker, Honne, Ben Khan
Their bright new single ‘Who’ is an indie-pop bop, with dreamy guitars and stadium-ready vocals. Taken from their new album, ‘Flow’, which both questions and answers ten suggestions that represent a fascinating escape from reality.
We covered Glassio a while back, and his melancholic and bittersweet take on electronica, disco and pop, what he describes as “melancholy-disco.”
The new single by the NY-based Irish-Iranian songwriter-producer is called ‘Nobody Stayed For The DJ.’ Inspired by early-80s UK-electro, the track is buoyed by trembling rhythms and emotional rumbles through its burbling synths. The expansive track still finds its place in a peaceful echo chamber as Glassio’s crooning guides us through a journey where tragedy and self-depreciation meet unexpectedly.
In his own words, Glassio says,
“I wanted to write a song about a DJ that has a micro-existential crisis during a set where they’re performing to absolutely nobody. I’ve definitely been there many times where I’ve DJ’ed or played live to an empty room and thought ‘what am I doing with my life?’ and know a lot of friends that can relate to that thought.”
Sounds like: Hot Chip, Metronomy, Foals, Jagwar Ma, Rüfüs, Flume, Odesza, Bob Moses, Glass Animals, Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs
Rising Manchester four-piece Larkins recently dropped their highly-anticipated EP, ‘Hit and Run’ on Good Soldier Records.
It’s a finely-crafted mix of melodic futurism and vulnerability. We decided to have a chat with the guys ahead of their US tour to find out what’s going to be on their travelling playlist.
This is the outcome…
Khalid – Intro
Production-wise this is a pretty perfect track. Always feeling like it could kick in at any moment and it never does but still manages to bang. Incredible opening track to have on an album.
Gengahr – Icarus
Gengahr have completely taken up a level on this album. Produced by Jack Steadman from Bombay Bicycle Club, this track just makes your head move.
King Princess – Talia
Proper digging King Princess at the minute, love how this track goes from the laid back folky verse then hits you with the massive chorus. She’s proper pushing boundaries with her visuals as well, need to catch her live.
Whitney – Valleys (My Love)
Literally first heard Whitney for the first time a couple of weeks ago and fucking love them. Love how this track is kinda like a mellow Beach Boys without the harmonies on top of 70s acoustic folk with Bon Iver horns.
Friendly Fires – Pull Me Back To Earth
Whenever we’re trying to get a clean electric guitar sound in the studio we seem to reference this track. I remember when PALA came out and it blew my mind.
Jai Paul – Do You Love Her Now
Just absolute vibes. Again, that clean guitar sound is mad.
Foals – Spanish Sahara
Such an anthem. Seeing this track live and how the crowd reacts to it made me want to be in a band. The drop never fails to hype me up.
Bon Iver – Naeem
The vocal on this song is madness. The piano and the whole feel is just badass. Bon Iver can do no wrong. This album has been a massive reference point when we’re in the studio, especially when it comes to synth and drum sounds.
Bon Iver – 33 “GOD”
Another Bon Iver, 22 a million is top 5 best albums ever. The production on this track just blows the roof off. Cant even quite comprehend how good this track is. No idea what the lyrics mean but this track is just insanity.
Biffy Clyro – Different People
This song really marks two defining moments in Larkins career.
1. They opened with it when they headlined T in the park in Scotland and it seemed to be such an emotional moment for everyone there, it really made us realise that we wanted to do this.
2. Dom decided he wanted to be Simon and grew his hair really long.
Radiohead – Weird Fishes
In rainbows is such a monumental album and it was hard to choose one track but Weird Fishes really sums up Radiohead’s visionary blend of pop, rock and dance music.
Haim – Summer Girl
Such a great nod to the 60s with the Lou Reed sample but with such a modern LA vibe. We’d just got back from our first trip to LA when this came out and it proper seemed to sum up the city for us. The scene out there is so vibrant at the minute.
Khalid, Disclosure – Talk
Love this track. Another one we try to reference a little bit with the style of the synths and the drum sounds. The riff is so good.
US/UK Tour Dates
12 Mar – Toronto, The Monarch
13 Mar – New York, Pianos
14 Mar – Brooklyn, Elsewhere (Zone One)
18 Mar – Austin, Maggie Mae’s
19 Mar – Austin, Rainey Street
21 Mar – Austin, Broad Studios
21 Mar – Austin, Cedar Street Courtyard
24 Mar – Los Angeles, Moroccan Lounge
Scottish band, Dancing on Tables, explores a more melancholic side in ‘Not To Need You’.
Written in Nashville alongside legendary songwriter Liz Rose (TaylorSwift, LittleBigTown, CarrieUnderwood), the hopeful song encapsulates the uphill battles everyone goes through in life but reminds us that there is always a light at the end of the tunnel.
Sounds like: Sea Girls, Biffy Clyro, Circa Waves, The 1975, Rat Boy, Circa Waves, The Amazons, Blossoms, Wild Nothing, Cassia, Catfish and the Bottlemen
Another Newcastle band for us this week – Llovers.
Releasing the infectious new cut, ‘Feeling Sound’, it’s clear that anyone listening to the track will be enamoured by their immense potential, thanks to their irresistible anthemic tendencies with sparkling riffs, sing-along choruses and playful songwriting.
London baroque pop band Weird Milk shares ‘Is That Love?’.
Having already supported indie risers Alfie Templeman and Pip Blom, and about to support APRE on their UK tour, their latest offering doesn’t disappoint.
Songwriter and drummer Charlie Glover-Wright explains, “The song itself is about a relationship turning sour as a lemon and the main character realising that they don’t need it anymore and they’ll be better off on their own.”
Sounds like: FEET, Sports Team, The Magic Gang, Genghar, The Last Shadow Puppets
You may recognise Kelli-Leigh’s vocals from such hits as ‘More Than Friends’ by Jame Hype, ‘I Got U’ by Duke Dumont and Second City‘s ‘I Wanna Feel’, but it’s time for the British singer/songwriter to step out into the light and reveal her first solo music of the decade.
The uptempo pop song, ‘Cotton Clouds’ describes a blissed out relationship. Lovely.
Dutch DIY duo The Day are Laura Loeters from from Antwerp/Belgium and Hamburg based Gregor Sonnenberg.
Sharing the fancy-free video for their cover of ‘Tenderfoot’ by The Lemonheads / Smudge, the latest release is inspired by their youth, as the dream-pop band continue their tasteful take on original classics.
Bristol-bred quartet Make Friends sure knows how to appease, with their dispensing progressive indie-pop.
Their fourth-ever single ‘When Nothing’s Said’, is ever so slightly more direct than their former releases, about experiencing and not being able to shake intense paranoia from the idea that your partner is being unfaithful to you.
It’s out now via Funnel Music.
Sounds like: Foals, Maribou State, Cassia, Bombay Bicycle Club
Young Midlands-based quartet JupiterMoon is causing a bit of a ruckus.
Their energetic choruses and Asian influenced guitar hooks are written for sweaty, intimate venues. Conjuring up homegrown rock anthems at Blank Studios in Nercastle, their strongest track to date ‘The Reason’ is all the justification you need.
Nashville’s John-Luke Carter, aka Mokita, is a singer/songwriter/producer known for his lyrical and buoyant electronic-based pop.
Classically trained in piano in his youth, he later taught himself to play guitar and eventually transitioned into electronic music production. Taking a rewind to his classical routes, Mokita shares an orchestral version of ‘colorblind’ and it’s spellbounding.
An introvert at heart, Dräger creates unabashed synth pop bangers born from a modern heartbreak.
Co-produced by House producer LEFTI, the single ‘New Life’ marks a fresh start for the singer, multi-instrumentalist, and producer Spencer Draeger, as he uses sounds of the past to channel themes of the modern age, taking a satirical approach to the narcissisms and anxiety illuminated through technology.
Sounds like: New Order, Soft Cell, Holy Ghost!, Dansu, The Cure, White Lies, Cocteau Twins
Introducing singer/producer/multi-instrumentalist MAX RAD.
Born in the peaceful countryside of Stroud in Gloucestershire, the now-London based artist reflects on the tranquillity and silence of his birth place to create an emotionally deeper type of music. Since moving to London, an increase in anxiety has led to his music taking a slightly different turn.
His new single ‘Old Toy’ takes on a deeply personal message about holding on to something you love during a painful time.
Speaking on the track, Max says, “Old Toy is about missing someone, the passing of time making it worse. It is about nostalgia. Being stuck in a sadness from missing the person and the issues it causes.”