Introducing Laarsen, an innovative electronic artist, producer, and multi-instrumentalist.
Slotting nicely into the musical realms of JamesBlake and FrankOcean, Laarsen samples with the electronic (modern synthesisers, beats and production techniques) and natural (vocal recordings, vinyl samples, and organic instrumentation), merging sounds from the past, present, and future.
Listen to the ‘Would U’ below, and expect a debut EP in the Spring.
Sounds like: Ben Pearce, Lane 8, James Blake, Burial, Mura Masa, Jim E-Stack, Jacques Greene, Kelela, Frank Ocean
Josh Jacobson is effortlessly combining modern R&B with dance-pop in his new single ‘Sideline’ featuring co-production from Gigamesh.
On the subject of the song, he explains,
“Sideline is a song about growth and building in new directions, learning to let go when it’s necessary to move forward. It’s about those inner voices at times of transition that are at once exciting but so challenging emotionally. I think these lyrics will resonate with a lot of people in different ways, so I’m excited to hear how people relate to the song.”
Sounds like: Le Youth, Drake, Justin Timberlake, The Weeknd
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
Haux is the project of rising photographer-turned-musician Woodson Black.
His most recent release, ‘Heartbeat’, is a stunning piano-led track that once again showcases his ability to effortlessly combine film and storytelling with music.
The short film set in the Cape Cod seaside town of Truro, Massachusetts features Sam Laiz and model Chloe Nørgaard, and explores the depths of love. Woodson explains,
“I get the chills anytime I remember this day at the beach. The landscape was so desolate it somehow made us shiver even more. I tried my best to capture that haunting feeling of being completely alone with your thoughts; those relentless kind of thoughts that never leave you. I wanted to show that while there is always pain in remembering, there is tenderness too.”
His forthcoming sophomore EP & companion short film ‘Something To Remember’ is set for release on 30 March via Ultra Records.
European Tour Dates
12 May – Berne, Switzerland – ISC
13 May – Zurich, Switzerland – Exil
16 May – Vienna, Austria – Chelsea
17 May – Berlin, Germany – Musik & Frieden
19 May – Copenhagen, Denmark – Ideal Bar
21 May – Stockholm, Sweden – Bar Brooklyn
22 May – Hamburg, Germany – Nochtspeicher
23 May – Cologne, Germany – Yuca
24 May – Roubaix, France – la Cave aux Poètes
26 May – Utrecht, Netherlands – EKKO
28 May – Groningen, Netherlands – USVA
29 May – Paris, France – Le Point Ephémère
1 June – London, UK – Omeara
2 June – Glasgow, UK – Stereo
Meet Mar, a Dutch-Caribbean-Indonesian who grew up on a houseboat with his musical family in Amsterdam.
We have been blown away by his emotive and often heartbreaking music, specifically his current EP ‘Things Will Be’, which touches on key issues such as depression and suicide.
As a little introduction to the music of Mar, we asked him to put together a playlist for you.
Massive Attack – Teardrop I was born in ’87 I really think the 90s era in music had a huge impact on me. I love the video for this one, the whole package. The simple chords the simple melodies yet so powerful.
D’Angelo – Africa Big fan of D’Angelo’s album Voodoo. This song stands out to me because it’s the only lullaby, he made I think. It’s more pure and honest than the other songs. I love the choice for the snare sound.
Jeff Buckley – So Real I heard Jeff kinda recently like 3/4 years ago or something and fell in love immediately, his guitar work is brilliant and his voice and falsetto are too. This song is truth to me.
Björk – All is Full of Love Björk is not like any other artist in her presentation. I remember seeing this video and was like wtf, this speaks to my soul. Robot clones of her kissing eachother in slowmo. fkyh! The production and lyrics are gold too. Everything fits.
Chris Whitley – Big Sky Country My father, a major infuence on my musical career, used to wake me and my sis up with this song and warm milk w honey. So everytime I hear this song I feel his love. Love the song and the bass specially.
James Blake – Retrograde James to me has one of the best live shows I’ve seen thus far. So pure and everything so well played/sung. His music is so powerful, simple but well put together.
The Isley Brothers – Sensuality Part 1&2 My pianist played me this song, again the simplicity seems there, also in the solo, but the chord progression is kinda tricky to come up with. One of the most sexy tunes of all time to me
Prince – The Most Beautiful Girl Prince. The one I connected to while discovering I could sing falsetto haha. So unique. So feminine and powerful but a brought to earth as a man. What an amazing artist. Even though I’m deffo not fan of all of his work, when he touched me with a song he really did it deeply. Like this one. (Sexy M.F in playlist as Most Beautiful . . . is not available on Spotify)
Bill Evans – My Foolish Heart His trio formation live show is what I always put on when I need some background music. Love his style of chords choice. This song to me is peaceful autumn, warm ginger tea and a book.
Mats & Morgan Band – Hollmervalsen My father came back from a Scandinavian tour and brought back this weird album from fusion duo Mats and Morgan. I used to listen to this song so often, trying to learn the tempo changes. When music becomes so boring for you, you decide make a robotic fusion song. That’s this to me.
Melbourne-based folktronica artist BATTS returns with her beautiful new single ‘Somedays’.
Using space as a reference (specifically the NASA recording of Saturn’s rings), ‘Somedays’ showcases BATTS’ knack of creating psych-tinged pop that is extremely grounding, but also feels otherworldly at the same time.
Expect her mesmerising and melancholic debut EP ’62 Moons’, to be released through the newly announced THAA Records.
Sounds like: London Grammar, Ficci, GEMS, MS MR, Daughter, James Blake, Jon Hopkins, MØ, SOHN, Broods, M83
Wow, ‘You’ is some serious spine tingling stuff from Dream Estate, an exciting ambient pop outfit on the scene.
The band was originally founded by William Tse in 2015, but later was joined by Dan Hvorostovsky (bass, backing vocals), Dan Noble (lead guitar, backings vocals), and Joe Dawson (drums) in 2017. Since then, the band have been working alongside producer Sam Winfield (Fickle Friends, Pixel Fix, Amber Run, Motherhood).
Time to start cruising with The Kite String Tangle‘s unusually upbeat new single, ‘This Thing We Got’.
It’s a song about the butterflies you feel when you first get with someone, cleverly represented by the rosy horn section (think MarkRonson, Rudimental). Originally planned to be 30 b.p.m slower than it now is, the slower melody is sampled in the chorus as a “song within a song”.
Watch the live video below.
‘This Thing We Got’ can be found on The Kite String Tangle‘s self-titled debut album which is available everywhere now via Exist Recordings.
Sounds like: RÜFÜS, Dead Ceremony, M83, TDeL2, Vancouver Sleep Clinic, The Weeknd, Active Child, Mount Kimbie, Fever Ray, James Blake, Cloud Boat
Austrian producer filous has also been an inquisitive soul, and a fast learner, perfecting a number of instruments at the tender age of 10. Fast forward 10 years, and filous finds himself nestled amongst the likes of Flume and ODESZA with his electronic music.
‘Already Gone’ features the delicate vocals of top songwriter Emily Warren (The Chainsmokers, FRENSHIP) and is out now via Ultra Music.
Another Los Angeles-pop songstress, TRACE has just shared her new single, ‘You Don’t Know Me’ – a song about first impressions.
TRACE is the daughter of Vietnamese pop icon Carol Kim, and has always been surrounded by music. Despite trying not to follow in her mum’s footsteps, TRACE couldn’t resist penning tracks and recording them in the bathroom.
Listen to one of the results below.
Sounds like: Lana Del Rey, Laurel, Tove Lo, Broods, GEMS, Lykke Li, Phantogram, So Below, Jessie Ware, LUEM, Cat Power, Lorde, James Blake, Banks
Rock musicians-turned electronic producers Polarbearz share ‘Recognize’. Despite being located in the distant Lapland and writing a song about being different, the duo have managed to create music that sounds so on point.