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 (PJHarvey, DepecheMode, 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
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.
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.
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.
Rising pop artist ADAL shares his new single ‘Synthesize’, featuring the vocals of Alexanderson of XY&O.
It oozes nostalgia combine with forward-thinking pop sensibilities, and there are even more exciting times ahead for ADAL – he is currently writing a debut album, with an array of featuring vocalists which include FREJA, Indiana, Farida and NINA.
UK trio STITCH are giving London Grammar a run for their money with ‘Goodbye Highline’.
The mid-tempo track is about that tricky middle moment where you look back nostalgically on a love lost, but also welcome the bright future ahead. It contains 150 layers of strings, all of which were recorded by band member Kye in their shared living room.
Expect their ‘Welcome To The Dream’ EP in March.
Sounds like: London Grammar, Jessie Ware, Nimmo, Kudu Blue
Los Angeles-based producer Le Youth releases a slightly surprising more chilled out track than usual, featuring talented American producer, singer, songwriter MNDR who has worked with the likes of Mark Ronson, RAC and Flume.
Speaking of the track, Le Youth explains,
“…Creatively speaking, ‘I Could Always’ is a bit different from the other songs I’ve put out. It’s not dance and it’s not pop. The music, vocal, and video come together to create a vibe that’s hard to describe, but you just get it… That’s how I knew this needed to come out. I’m so excited to share this one.”
In case you haven’t met French producer Kazy Lambist before, let us introduce him to you again.
At just 20, Kazy Lambist is already doing what Joe Goddard has spent years perfecting. Now we are in no way dissing Joe (we are huge fans), but youth is definitely on Kazy’s side, helping him create some insane floor fillers in his (short) time on this planet (see below for his current release ‘Be Yourself’).
We asked Kazy Lambist to put together a playlist for us. Watch out, this one has serious positive vibes.
Charlotte Adigéry – 1,618 Rich sound textures produced by the Dewaele brothers on Soulwax’s label DEEWEE. I love Charlotte Adigéry’s maternal yet malicious voice! The whole EP is amazing.
Bergheim 34 – Random Access Memory
This song’s name sounds familiar today! Although this came out in 2003, it has a lot in common with Daft Punk as they both pay beautiful tributes to analog instruments and devices. I love the wistful vibe on this one.
Mount Kimbie – Delta
I’ve been a Mount Kimbie fan since their “Crooks & Lovers” EP. To me, that was one of the most beautiful electronica EPs ever made. They always stay true to their need to mix acoustic sounds with unexpected synthetic sounds and drum machines – therefore they create a creepy and peaceful mood that goes directly through your heart. When I start listening to Mount Kimbie, it just goes on repeat all day because I never want to get out of that deep atmosphere.
Jean Leloup – I Lost My Baby
I remember my parents listening to this track when we were living in Montreal, Canada. I was 9 at the time, but this song still moves me.
Anna Kova – Believe
Beautiful beat with simple and clean voice melodies. The verses don’t have much meaning, they are just there to lead us to the wonderful chorus – “Believe in yourself.” This chorus is just so touching. Those three words keep me captivated and it seems like her voice is about to crack at the end of every sentence. It is so simple and still it evokes so much. I love this track.
Bonobo – Silver
I’ve loved Bonobo’s music for at least 10 years and think I’ll never get bored of it. He is just the best at what is tastelessly called “lounge music” or “chill music.” So many artists have tried to copy his work, yet none of them have succeeded. His music is full of truth and kindness; he’s the most peaceful musician without having to sing a word.
Ian Pooley – Chord Memory (Daft Punk Remix)
My music engineer Julien Delfaud showed me this remix one day because we were looking for a big, electro-bass sound. I fell in love with this bass line. Daft Punk efficiency!
James Tillman – Missed Encounters
His voice is just so soft it’s unbelievable. Perfect to wake up and start a lazy sunday with a hangover
Sounds like: RÜFÜS, Joe Goddard, RAC, Ghost Beach, Goldroom, Zimmer, Jape, Penguin Prison, Hot Chip, Friendly Fires
It turns out Secret Weapons have been keeping a few things from us, the unfortunate news of lead singer Gerry Lange being ill. Whilst touring with bands like Weezer and Panic! at the Disco, the band kept Gerry’s health struggles quiet and as Danny Rocco says “strangely, the album became about making the album.”
Their latest single ‘My Blue Heaven’ embodies that very struggle.
Sounds like: Future Islands, The 1975, Lionel Richie, The Levity, The Island Club, Ghost Beach, Backstreet Boys, LANY, Great Good Fine Ok, The Knocks, Dagny
A collaborative album sounds exciting to us, especially when it’s written and produced by rising singer/songwriter/producer NOVAA and UK bedroom producer LO.
‘Go There’ is the third single from their ‘LIGHTS’ album, and “is about empty promises and letting go of someone that doesn’t really want you. It’s the moment you realize that you’re put on hold and that it’s not a romance but a game. The bubble you lived in pops and you find yourself playing a role and being someone that you don’t want to be.”
The album is out now on 29 September via Majestic Casual.