Lockdown gave us lots of time for inner reflection and like many others, we reached out to listen to more gentle genres of music to calm our overstressed minds.
One such artist we took delight in, is multi-instrumentalist, producer and composer TomAshbrook. His filmic EP titled ‘koːda’ explores new variations of ‘Klass’, (a track taken from his 2020 album ‘Sensibus’), to create a collaborative new body of work, all stemming from the original melody ideas.
The second track from the EP, ‘tu ː orbit’ features guest vocalist Faroese singer-songwriter Greta Svabo Bech. Known for her vocal collaboration with Ludovico Einaudi with ‘Circles’, performance on Deadmau5’s ‘Raise Your Weapon, the pair combine to create an emotionally rich, delicate blend of Ashbrook’s signature classical influence with Greta’s ethereal tones.
Introducing the new project by Pietro Filippone – aka uomo.
His latest release, ‘All I Hear’, is the first song that Filippone has written by himself for the project. A decent bit of autotune in there, the softer house elements give the song a gorgeously gentle uplift.
Sounds like: Henry Green, Roosevelt, Goldroom, Hayden James, Elderbrook
DJ and producer Amtrac has teamed up with Grammy Award-winning British musician, DJ and producer Alex Metric on vocals in new single, ‘So Afraid’.
Looping vocals contemplate a simple question, “why you so afraid of love?” as Alex Metric’s breathy, enunciated voice lends an edge to the droning synths beneath, forming a steady crescendo of sound and passion that blooms.
UK duo Dirty Nice releases ‘100,000 Heartbeats’. A synth-wave pop at the core, it’s the perfect counterpart to the more lo-fi B-side, ‘Love Team’.
Originally presented as a special Valentines Day release, Dirty Nice sent a number of personalised cards to fans. Continuing this theme on their Instagram, an intergalactic cartoon epic has unfolded with a new card revealed every day.
Sounds like: Elder Island, Camel Power Club, Gorillaz, Everyone You Know, 10 O’Clock Chemical
Rising Danish pop songstress ELBA is making waves.
Starting her musical journey in the local choir at the age of six, it was clear her destiny was singing. Her new single ‘Remember Me’ showcases her powerful vocal range, and perfectly fits with the electro-pop production.
The Norweigan artists are smashing it this week, and it’s truly great to see Emilie Nicolas return.
Showing a new side to her music – less “cool pop” and more reflective – ‘Who’s Gonna Love You’ is centred around the difficulties of letting go of a relationship, succinctly capturing despair, unbridled joy, and the desire to dance.
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
Singer-songwriters Zoe Konez and Antonio Lulic combine on the rousing alternative-pop anthem “Echo”. Drawing on influences from Zoe’s indie background and Antonio’s stadium-filling pop tones, it’s an epic piece of pop-fusion that details a longing for adventure at the expense of personal relationships.
Sounds like: Oh Wonder, Of Monsters and Men, Ben Howard
The multi-faceted talents create infectious, experimental pop in their basements studio in a London warehouse. They also run their own underground audiovisual club nights, as well as producing and remixing for other artists.
Napoleon Gold – Love Don’t Cut Me Down (feat. Haiva Ru)
French-born Antoine Honorez aka Napoleon Gold returns with his latest single ‘Love Don’t Cut Me Down’ featuring the vocals of Haiva Ru’s Allie Merril.
The track can be compared to an 80’s Fleetwood Mac song that’s been given an electronic boogie re-skin.
Speaking of the unique late-night feel of his music, Napoleon credits his life-long struggle with insomnia, “During my first year in Brussels for university, my insomnia became more and more frequent. I remember staying awake night after night, making music, watching the sunrise from my music desk – it had this beautiful orange and golden colour, I knew seeing this colour meant I had once again failed to sleep, but it also symbolised a new day, a new beginning. I decided to name that colour ‘Napoleon Gold'”.
Sounds like: Goldroom, Chela, RAC, Le Youth, JackLNDN
Grammy-Award nominated producer and vocalist, and Mura Masa collaborator, Tom Tripp returns with his latest single ‘TAM’, the first release off his forthcoming project ‘FLAG’.
The electro-laced funk track started life back in 2016, undergoing various iterations on Tom’s Laptop until a session with Grades earlier this year led to a final version that the self-proclaimed perfectionist was finally happy to share with the world.
Nashville-based alternative pop act, Daniella Mason, is back with a dreamy new visual that continues her ‘Mental State’ EP and ‘State of Mine’ sound series in which she aims to explore different parts of our humanity.
With her latest music video release – shot and edited by Dylan Reyes – Mason aimed to create a dream sequence that visualises the feeling of wandering throughout her mind and expands on its aimlessness.
Sounds like: Imogen Heap, The Japanese House, Robyn, Maggie Rogers, Billie Eilish, George Gretton, Luna Pines
We are huge fans of quirky Icelandic electro-pop provacateur Máni Orrason‘s new single ‘Numb’. In fact, we are slightly obsessed with all of the visuals for his last few releases, portraying a broken yet endearing persona of desperation and a need for love.
The visuals for ‘Numb’ flashback to straying and emotional neglect, “I had this desperate need to be seen and to be comforted. I guess i was really lonely at the time”, Máni recalls.
The EP ‘BABY ANGEL’ is out now via Humming Records.
It’s time to end this week’s gems on a funky number from cross Atlantic trio, TriOrca.
Comprised of multi-instrumentalists and writers, who between them have an ecclectic array of work connections – including Jessie J, Sam Henshaw, Empire of the Sun – their modern, yet nostalgic music fuses neo-soul, hip hop and 70’s psychedelica.
At just under three minutes long, you’ll be easily forgiven for pressing repeat on SHY Nodi‘s new track, ‘Snakes’.
SHY Nodi, aka Nirob Islam, was born in Stockholm in 1993 after his family emigrated to Sweden from Bangladesh. Since then, he has penned some incredible tracks with his songwriting partner, SHY Martin, and won a number of native music awards.
His new single – out now via BLNK Music – is a frank call out to relationship snakes. You know the ones…
Rising electro-pop duo The Bliss share new single ‘Happier’.
Comprised of pop songstress TYSM (Chelsea Davenport) and hip-hop/electronic producer and guitarist Felix Snow (SZA, Kiiara, Gallant, IconaPop, RitaOra, TerrorJr.), their third single is a funky bop number, that effotlessly trailblazes new age synth-pop.
Curated within a minimal electronic soundscape that includes adventurous songwriting, densely layered harmonies and neo-soul guitar riffs, Myo is on a quest to add a human touch in the world of programmed dance music.
Canadian producer Felix Cartal has teamed up with alt-pop singer/songwriter Lights for his debut single of 2019, the emotive and yet entirely groove-worthy ‘Love Me.’
A collaboration through and through, the song was born by just the two of them from start to finish and has everything you want from a decent dance-pop track – organic instrumental chords, indulgent melodies and a stunning vocal performance.