Tag Archives: The xx

Playlist: Tessa Dixson

Tessa Dixson

Tessa Dixson has just released the emotive ‘Falling’, which one again feature those trademark yearning and goosebumps inducing vocals. To celebrate the release, we asked Tessa to put together a playlist of inspiration for us.

Listen below.

Tessa Dixson – Prayer

This was my first ever release, and it still embodies everything i am today. It’s still so true to what i believe and i feel it’s the kind of anthem for any young adult discovering the beauty and sadness of life.

Frank Ocean – White Ferrari

His album Blonde is the only album i am able to listen to on repeat without getting tired of it, but on the contrary falling in love with it even more every time. He captures your emotions so perfectly and something quite extraordinary happens, he’s a musical genius to me.

Maggie Rogers – Give A Little

I’ve never really been into pop rock, but Maggie is an amazing singer songwriter, and when you hear one of her songs you will directly know it’s hers, and this song is a perfect feel-good-get out of bed-on a sunny morning-dancing in front of the mirror song, start off your morning right with Maggie!

Spooky Black – DJ Khaled Is My Father

I think Spooky Black may be the artist i’ve listened to the most since i was 16 years old. He has this haunting truth telling that is just so sad and he is able to make poetry out of it, that’s beautiful to me. When i listen to this song i feel i am laying on a bed of white roses in the sky slowly falling into a pool of red.

Ama Lou – Tried Up

To me, Ama Lou is the next big thing in the underground world, she has a really strong concept and her latest project DDD is super interesting. Her songs resonate a cool coolness.

Aphex Twin – #3

I have a playlist on my phone called “starfish” and a lot of Aphex Twin’s songs are in it simply because that’s what the songs make me feel like, a starfish underwater, a certain serenity and peace of mind and just gliding with the slow current, i usually listen to this playlist when i’ve smoked a spliff.
The song is 7 minutes long and is very monotonous in the sense that it is the same chords over and over but that is the beauty of the song, it’s not about the chords itself but more about what happens in between.

Bicep – Opal (Four Tet Remix) 

I NEVER GET TIRED OF THIS SONG!!! It has so many ups and downs in it that you never get bored from it. It’s the kind of song you want to listen to when you come back from a party and the sun starts to come up and you still feel a bit buzzed but tired at the same time, thats the feeling i get from this song. Just writing about it gives me sweaty palms and butterflies in my stomach.

James Black / Bon Iver – I Need A Forest Fire

Everything about this song makes me emotional and i don’t know why but that’s why i love it so much. James Blake and Bon Iver is a match made in heaven, everything about this song is perfect, the harmonies, the ad-libs, the beat, the chords, the strength of their voices together, i mean everything.

The Blaze – Virile

If you haven’t yet noticed, i tend to like songs that make me feel some kind of way, that’s usually why i like a song or not. Well this song represents a form of nostalgia and that’s why i like it so much, it tells a story by the atmosphere.

Romeo Elvis/Primero/Tessa Dixson/Halibab Matador – Poliss Massa

Romeo Elvis has really been able to create a sort of empire so i’m very proud to have been a part of it in the very beginning. It’s such a chill song and really makes me think of Brussels somehow.

Sounds like: The xx, Kllo, Grace Carter

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Weekly Gems 52

Ayelle – Obvious

Ayelle

Mellow music-maker Ayelle shares her self-reflecting new single ‘Obvious’.

The Swedish-Iranian R&B singer-songwriter teamed up with producer Jonah Stevens, to delve furhter into her lyrical clarity and sultry vocals.

Listen below.

Sounds like: Banks, 4AM, Wet, IYES, The XX, SOHN

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Jinka – Ghost 2 U

JINKA

Jinka’s track ‘Ghost 2 U’ is glitchy trip-pop at its finest.

Ghost 2 U” is the Transylvanian artist‘s most emotionally dynamic track to date.
It juxtaposes a heavy, industrial half-time drop reminiscent of acts like Cashmere Cat, Amnesia Scanner or Tommy Cash with touchingly fragile and intimate tale-telling verses.
Jinka’s vocals evolve over a loop of pluck-sounds that unavoidably take your imagination to an underground stalactite cave hidden in the souterrains of Berlin.

Sounds like: Kate Boy, I BREAK HORSES

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daste. – SOBER

daste

Australian trio daste. is comprised of Callum MacDonald, Braxton Tahi & Tyler Harden.

Focusing on the smaller details (with the ‘d’ in daste. standing for detail), their new track, ‘SOBER’ is a summery lo-fi number showcasing simple, yet effective songwriting, and shares the idea that a clear head is always better than a mediocre, intoxicated one.

It’s out now via Mammal Sounds Records.

Sounds like: RÜFÜS DU SOL

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Malihini – Delusional Boy

Malihini

There is always an air of romanticism with Italian culture and Italian duo Malihini are no exception to this rule.

Their new single ‘Delusional Boy’ has upbeat drums, neatly undercut by its recurring vocal refrain, “Delusional Boy/Delusional Girl” – the downbeat rejoinder conveyed with a typically euphonious duo vocal melody that juxtaposes between a falsetto male part with baratone-esq female vocals, which all in all, creates an extremely easy-to-listen-to pop track.

Expect their debut album ‘Hopefully, Again’, out on 8 March via Memphis Industries.

Sounds like: SAMA, Beach House, Tennis, Chairlift, Au Revoir Simone

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HighSchool Jacob – Cant Get Enough

HighSchool Jacob

Highschool Jacob is an indie pop artist who has a serious way with words, so don’t mess.

Based out of Los Angeles, this nu-funk extraordinaire weaves catchy and retro melodies and engrossing stories to make head-nod worthy and heartwarming music.

Listen to ‘Can’t Get Enough’ below.

Sounds like: Daft Punk, Du Tonc

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Jesse Hite – When It All Comes Down

Jesse Hite

There is a definite lo-fi, funk theme in this week’s gems. Introducing Jesse Hite – an exciting solo artist who has just shared his debut ‘When It All Comes Down’.

An American artist living in France, Hite effortless blends sounds thanks to this move across the Atlantic, as well as travels through Asia.

‘When It All Comes Down’ is the first single of a three-song EP to be released. The song is full of character, soulful lyrics, in which Mite manages to create as much blooming sound as music troop, Jungle between a large number of them!

Sounds like: Shy Girls, YAKUL, Jungle, LCD Soundsystem

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youthxx – New Frontier

youthxx

Taking on the challenge of a new anthem for millennials is youthxx (also one half of Golden Coast).

‘New Frontier’ achieves anthemic territory with an inspiring, unforgettable vocal and sharp contemporary production that mixes synthetic and organic sounds with finesse.

Sounds like: Imagine Dragons, Golden Coast

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Tessa Dixson – Crystal Waters

Tessa Dixson by Alice Pallot

Tessa Dixson by Alice Pallot

Led by effortless strings, Belgian-based songwriter/model Tessa Dixson‘s new single ‘Crystal Waters’ is emotive yet soothing in the same breathtaking moment.

Baring her soul once again, Dixson explains about the song,

“Crystal Waters is a song that I wrote a while ago, and it still stands so true today, it’s all about being crystal clear and people trying to change you none the less. The synths and strings work perfectly together, caught feeling a whirlwind of emotions, you are transposed through sad lyrics but an uplifting arrangement, the strings really brings the whole song together.”

It’s out now on [PIAS].

Sounds like: The xx, Kllo, Grace Carter

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Little People – Skies Turn Blue Feat. Tif Lamson

Little People - Skies Turn Blue Feat. Tif Lamson

Little People is the beautiful project of Laurent Clerc, who has just returned to the UK following a stint of residing in Portland, US.

Little People combines elements of tech with lush instrumental landscapes, which will rightfully draw comparisons to ODESZA (who he supported on their US tour), Little Dragon and Maribou State.

‘Skies Turn Blue’ is the second single taken from his upcoming ‘Landloper’ album and features Tif Lamson of the band GIVERS.

It’s out now on his own label, Future Archive Recordings, which was co-founded with Sun Glitters, Arms and Sleepers and CNJR. It is a collaboratively minded label, that looks to empower artists to release music as they see fit with the help, clout and structure of a label.

Sounds like: Little Dragon, The xx, Bonobo, Maribou State, ODESZA, RJD2

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Kllo – Candid

Kllo

We’ve been longtime supporters of Kllo and honestly didn’t think they could impress anymore. That was until ‘Candid’ came along.

Evolving as artists, Kllo is a frank song about maturing emotions within a relationship, laden with slow beats and soulful vocals, courtesy of Chloe Kaul.

Listen below.

Sounds like: The xx, Jamie xx, Jessie Ware, Kudu Blue, Disclosure, Jorja Smith

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Tessa Dixson – Beautiful Pain

Tessa Dixson - Beautiful Pain

Tessa Dixson is channeling artistic cultures with alternative pop genres in her new single ‘Beautiful Pain’.

The visuals follow Dixson covered in drippings of gold paint, evoking the pleasure and pain of young love and relationships, amidst a vintage backdrop.

The track is out now via [PIAS] and will be followed by three more songs and an EP over the coming months.

Sounds like: The xx, Kllo, Grace Carter

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Weekly Gems 41

Sugarcane – Bethnal Green Blues

Sugarcane

Comprised of Robin French (Cuckoo) and Antonia Thomas (Misfits, Lovesick), these two creatives write seductive bossa nova music paired with calypso pop sensibilities that would fit well on the soundtrack of ‘The End of the F***ing World’.

On the motivation behind Bethnal Green Blues, Robin states,

“Sometimes you write a sad song from a happy moment. This came to me while I was flying to South America to see a girl I’d fallen for. It’s about the emotional ice age after a romance fails, but it was written as that ice melted under the Argentine sun..”

Sounds like: Nouvelle Vague, Men I Trust

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Dancing On Tables – Colour Me Good

Dancing On Tables by Lucy Foster-0009

We love an indie anthem, so thank you to five-piece pop-rock, Dancing On Tables.

The band, school friends from school in Dunfermline, a small town just outside Edinburgh, have released ‘Colour Me Good’ – a groove-laced, vintage indie-pop track that encapsulates sun-drenched, dance-able songwriting with a distinct Scottish charm.

Sounds like: Sea Girls, Biffy Clyro, Circa Waves, The 1975

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Slenderbodies – The One

Slenderbodies

Slenderbodies is a California-bred duo who write forward-thinking, dreamy synth-pop.

Their new single ‘The One’ is intricately subtle musical medication, shared in preparation of their upcoming EP, ‘SORAYA’, to be released through Los Angeles indie label Avant Garden, which is also home to Emotional Oranges.

Sounds like: Glass Animals, Alt-J, Milky Chance, Mura Masa, Passion Pit, PVRIS

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Dirty Nice – Always Summer

Dirty Nice

Forget those summer blues.

Mysterious UK-based duo, Dirty Nice, make a positive point in new single – it’s always summer, somewhere.

Released on Kitsuné, the single is an antidote to holiday blues, and the “optimistic twin” to their track ‘Zero Summer’.

Sounds like: Shy Luv, Phoenix, Daft Punk, Jai Paul, Sylvan Esso

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Gavin Haley – Sad Season

Gavin Haley

From summer season to ‘Sad Season’ with former professional cyclist Gavin Haley‘s latest single.

While competing with the national cycling team, Haley suffered an injury that resulted in a collapsed lung, setting back his travel by several months. During his recovery, he explored and found inspiration in Europe’s underground music scene, becoming enamored with energetic live performances filled with a grit and energy.

Starting with a simple West Coast-inspired guitar riff, ‘Sad Season’ soon picks up and exposes determined pop and R&B.

Sounds like: Zayn Malik, Frank Ocean, Ed Sheeran

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ROYAL – Vessel

ROYAL

Canadian songstress ROYAL debuts with ‘Vessel’, the first of six new tracks that appear on her upcoming album, ‘Heart of Shadows’.

Covering the topic of heartbreak, loss of identity and raw self-reflection, this is electro-pop at its finest in 2018.

Speaking about ‘Vessel,’ ROYAL says,

“This song is about heartbreak – having to let go of someone you love, and then realizing the emptiness and loss of identity that ensues. I wrote this song it while trying to find myself after getting lost within a relationship for many years and then feeling shattered by the loss of a love I thought would last a lifetime.”

Sounds like: VÉRITÉ, Lana Del Rey, Evvy, Noosa, Dominique, The xx

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Von Sell – Scene Of A Crime

Von Sell

Last but not least, our favourite breakthrough act – self-taught producer, singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, Von Sell.

After a bout of vocal pain and subsequent treatment, we are pleased to say that Von Sell is on the mend and returning to our stereos with ‘Scene OF A Crime’.

Taken from his forthcoming sophomore EP, ‘Digital Sleep’, the song reflects on unrequited love, but, due to its uptempo nature, it will ultimately leave a taste of confusion in your mouth because you can’t help but dance despite the disconcerting subject matter.

Sounds like: Summer Heart, Hazel English, Teen Daze, Peter Gabriel, Alt-J, Thomas Azier

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Feiertag – Tension Feat. Ayelle

Feiertag - Tension Feat. Ayelle

We last spoke with Ayelle over two years ago, so we are especially excited to share her new single with the Dutch live-act and producer, Feiertag.

The dark pop track loops sensuality as it takes over our minds with a predictable yet exciting energy.

The single is out now via Majestic Casual Records.

Sounds like: Maribou State, Banks, 4AM, Wet, IYES, The XX, SOHN

Feiertag
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Ayelle
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Weekly Gems 31

Gundelach – Control

Gundelach by Fredrik Harper

Having just signed to Terrible Records (Blood Orange, Porches, Le1f), Norwegian producer and artist Gundelach shares the imaginative ‘Control’.

It is taken from the forth-coming ‘Baltus’ LP, and showcases Gundelach’s Nordic-noir sensibilities, using delicate synths, pulsating beats and his effortless falsetto voice to tell a story of deep personal depression.

Sound like: Ásgeir, Bon Iver, Honne, Boxed In, RY X, Vancouver Sleep Clinic, The Presets

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Great News – You’re Mine

Great News

Time for something to lighten the mood from our favourite band of 2018, Great News.

‘You’re Mine’ is a shoe-gazer fan’s dream, a super colourful sonic nod to the 80’s and 90’s, a theme that runs throughout their debut LP ‘Wonderfault’.

Sounds like: Ten Fé, Bruce Springsteen, Sea Girls, SWIMM, Lean, Tame Impala, DIIV

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Benjamin’s Brother – If I Could

Benjamin's Brother

We are excited about Benjamin’s Brother – an interesting indie-pop band from Tel Aviv.

Discussing topics such as violence, death, desire and love, and citing influences across several genres including Arabic, American folk and techno, it’s no surprise that their sound is expansive, yet tender.

Watch their video below, which was shot by Indy Hait, at the Tel Aviv Museum Of Art, on a 16mm film.

Sounds like: Tame Impala, SAMA, Mumford & Sons, Solomon Grey, Vancouver Sleep Clinic, Aquilo

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CUT_ – It’s On

CUT_

Dutch electronic duo CUT_ share ‘It’s On’, a song about the denial towards the demise of a relationship.

But they don’t just write about internal issues found in human nature, but also discuss topics on mass psychology and by analysing these aspects of our society, CUT_ attempts to find a way of coping with the messed up world we’re living in.

Sounds like: IYES, Massive Attack, Kllo

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JOHN.K – Best Of Me

JOHN.K

JOHN.K‘s electronic driven pop always catches our attention and ‘Best Of Me’ is no exception.

‘Best Of Me’ is JOHN.K’s fourth single and demonstrates another layer of maturity and artistry. Speaking of the track, he explains,

“‘Best of Me’ is about evolving through young love, admitting to past mistakes and committing to giving someone the best possible version of yourself.”

Sounds like: Sam Smith, Justin Bieber

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Lalibelle – Balance

Lalibelle

Stockholm-based producer trio Lalibelle share their breezy pop track ‘Balance’.

Breaking the silence on mental health, the song tells the story of the childhood experience of having a suicidal parent.

Sounds like: Paperwhite

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Timothy – Fly

Timothy

We don’t know a great deal about Swedish singer/songwriter Timothy, but have really enjoyed listening to his second single, ‘Fly’.

Timothy explains, “The song is a long battle with a ghost of his, he interpreters his own song with a self-written poem. Wanting the listener to create their own story, rather than giving it all away.”

Sounds like: Bon Iver, Alex Vargas, Ry X, The xx, Keaton Henson, Matt Corby

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Klune – Hold On Feat. IVYE

Klune

Klune shares ‘Hold On’ featuring IVYE. It follows on from the release of ‘Nocturnal’, another magnetic pop number from the Italian band who formed in 2014.

Speaking about the track, the band say,

“Unlike our previously released single ‘Nocturnal’, ‘Hold on’ is one of the latest track we recorded for the LP and certainly represents a watershed, compared with the original sonorities of our project. Even with those changes, there is still a search for depth and space, two elements that strongly characterize most of our productions. The track sees the presence of Italian singer Ivye (Francesca Pianini). Her voice perfectly matches with the mood of the song adding to it a powerful combination of visceral moments and elegant vibes.”

‘Hold On’ will be released in January 19th via Factory Flaws.

Sounds like: Joe Goddard, The xx, Kudu Blue, SAMA

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