Tag Archives: US

Weekly Gems 100

TESSA – Bad Bad Love

TESSA

Australian artist Tessa Neale (fka Hoodlem) wants to leave her ego at the door whilst making music. Unfiltered and full of sass, this is TESSA at her core.

Produced with Jeff Hazin and featuring Toronto rapper Terrell Morris, her new single ‘Bad Bad Love’ is an upbeat anti-love song sending a message to the game-playing lovers everywhere…we see you.

Sounds like: Mahalia, Empress Of, Nao, Jessie Ware

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Francis Novotny – Someone I Wanted To Be

Francis Novotny

Young Swedish songwriter Francis Novotny shares the beautiful ‘Someone I Wanted To Be’.

With modern rings of The Cinematic Orchestra‘s ‘To Build A Home’, the cinematic approach to this stripped-back song – about love, regret, and new perspectives – is delicately composed with an emotional piano progression, whilst his vocals take centre stage.

Sounds like: The Cinematic Orchestra

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STRØM – Blurred Out

STRØM

After months of anticipation, Swedish artist STRØM finally unveils his earnest chops, whilst, ironically sharing his new single called ‘Blurred Out’, taken from his debut album, ‘Immortal’ out now via This is Scandinavia / Sony Music.

With a cascading beat of drums and vocal loops, the track gives us an intriguing glimpse into the album.

Sounds like: Ben Khan, TENDER, Solomon Grey, James Blake

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Benji Lewis – No Alibi

Benji Lewis

Sounds like: The 1975, The Kite String Tangle, Antony Hegarty, Active Child, Gallant, Sam Smith, Solomon Grey, James Blake, Yazz, Jack Garratt, Disclosure

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Christian Cohle – Breathe

Christian Cohle by Adrian Wojtas

Christian Cohle by Adrian Wojtas

Dublin-born Christian Cohle shares his haunting and melancholic debut single, ‘Breathe’.

Mixing majestic synthesizers and driving rhythms, ‘Breathe’ explores the emotional struggle of feeling interlinked with something that turns out to be artificial. Discussing the inspiration behind his new record, Cohle says: “Breathe was predominantly informed by experiences I was going through at the time, but also very much influenced by the neo-noir science fiction film, Blade Runner 2049.

Sounds like: James Blake, Sampha, Jai Paul, Solomon Grey

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Matthew Scott Ragland – Here and Now

Matthew Scott Ragland by Holly Peyton

Matthew Scott Ragland by Holly Peyton

Dallas-based songwriter, producer, recording artist and former band member of Austin based Nelo, Matthew Scott Ragland finds solace in a new project.

His double single, ‘Here and Now / Now is Here’ was written by Ragland from a purist point of view, where synthesizers, drum machines and string samples take the place of his trusted guitar.

Sounds like: The Stone Roses, Ulrich Schnauss, Jon Hopkins, Joe Goddard

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Pastel – Let You (Feat. Haoting)

Pastel - Let You (Feat. Haoting)

French-Polynesian singer and multi-instrumentalist Pastel unveils his impossibly smooth new single, ‘Let You’.

It’s a blissed out neo-jazz Bossa Nova fusion compiled alongside long-time friend and Taiwanese artist, Haoting.

Sounds like: FKJ, Miller Blue, Yakul, Easy Life, Hers, Tom Misch

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WATTS – Lie Here With You

WATTS

Nashville-based artist WATTS writes exciting pop music with a joyful sparkle.

Inspired by the great male pop acts of our time – LANY, Troye Sivan to name a couple – WATTS channels his piano playing experience into more digital forms of synths and keyboards.

His latest single ‘Lie Here With You’ can be listened to below, alongside another one of our favs, ‘Talk About It’.

Sounds like: LANY, Troye Sivan, COIN, Honne

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Weekly Gems 99

Alfie Neale – Vices

Alfie Neale

Brighton-based singer/songwriter Alfie Neale shares his latest laid back and soul sweeping single, ‘Vices’.

It’s a song that describes the importance of the little things in life and a support network to help you through the fun times, and the more serious.

Sounds like: Yakul, Tom Misch, Jordan Rakei

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JupiterMoon – The Reason

JupiterMoon

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.

Sounds like: Foals, Blossoms

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A Is For Arrows – Roses

A Is For Arrows

Toronto electro-pop duo A Is For Arrows shares the lush new single, ‘Roses’.

Echoes of heartbreak glistened with a retro glow, this is easy listening electronica at its best. Listen below.

Sounds like: Lights, Jocelyn Alice, Goldroom, RAC, Le Youth, Broods

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Mokita – colorblind

Mokita

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.

Sounds like: Nirob Islam, EXES, Handsome Ghost, joan, FRND

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Tsar B – Unpaintable

Tsar B

Effortless and majestic with a highly cinematic yet vulnerable approach, Tsar B‘s single, ‘Unpaintable’, sees her functioning as a one-woman orchestra, songwriter, producer and singer.

An ode to the muddled emotions people that are too intelligent to just live a normal life feel; ‘They are uncatchable. They are unpaintable.”

Sounds like: GRAACE, Billie Eilish, FKA Twigs, ÄTNA

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Seafret – Magnetic

Seafret - Magnetic

The coastal town of Bridlington isn’t the first place in the UK that you think has a buzzing music scene, but we’ve stumbled upon the brilliant Seafret, who have proved us wrong.

Made up of Jack Sedman and Harry Draper, their new single ‘Magnetic’ is an indie-pop anthem at it’s finest – addictive vocal harmonies and commercial riffs, complete with a killer pop chorus

Sounds like: Kodaline, Amber Run, Imagine Dragons, Lewis Capaldi

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Luna Li – Trying

Luna Li - Trying

Luna Li (fka VEINS) shares the brooding new single, ‘Trying’.

A undeniable strong presence in the alt-pop world, Luna Li uses and blends her 14 years of classical piano and violin training with dreamy rock, to create a vulnerable and distorted sound.

Sounds like: Lykki Li, Niki & The Dove, Oh Land, Perfume Genius

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Matt Simons – Cold

Matt Simons

L.A Songwriter Matt Simons shares ‘Cold’ – a powerful piece of electronic pop that blends nostalgia and melancholic sentiment.

Speaking about the track, which has been released in time for any Valentine’s Day pessimist, he explains,

“People change, and change in any relationship is inevitable. The only question is, can the two people change together and adapt? Cold is about a relationship where they did not.”

Sounds like: Ruel, JP Cooper, Zak Abel

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Dräger – New Life

Dräger

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

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PHIL GOOD – Do You Ever? (RAC Remix)

PHIL GOOD - Do You Ever? (RAC Remix)

Los Angeles-based singer/songwriter PHIL GOOD initially released his single ‘Do You Ever?’ in late 2019 after announcing his signing to Elektra Records.

It started as mumbles during a time when he was in a lost and stuck place. The track helped process that running away from your problems isn’t the answer.

Now to kick off 2020, he enlists Portland-based, Portuguese-American musician and record producer, André Allen Anjos (aka RAC) to up the electronic game.

Sounds like: Honne, Joseph Salvat, Miike Snow, Glass Animals, Joywave, Just Kiddin’, San Holo

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Weekly Gems 98

Franky – Follow My Lead

Franky - Follow My Lead

Yorkshire isn’t particularly known for his pop heritage. That is until now. Meet singer/songwriter Franky.

Her influences range from funk, disco and R&B, and her new single ‘Follow My Lead’ will urge you to do just that, with its fizzy attitude and feisty pop sensibilities.

Sounds like: Icona Pop, Harlee, Charli XCX

Soundcloud

Estereomance – Crimson Queen

Estereomance

Estereomance is a trio from El Paso/Juarez comprised of Manu, Paulina and Adria.

The three artists may come from different experiences and backgrounds but they share one common goal – artistic fearlessness that invokes sensitivities of emotional fibres reachable through consciousness.

In a gentle nod to 70’s French dream pop, the single ‘Crimson Queen’ explores the themes of vanity, obsession, insecurity, gender and beauty through surreal and metaphoric music.

Sounds like: Men I Trust

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CHERITON – Parallel

CHERITON

Kent-born, London-based indie-pop newcomer CHERITON (aka Nick Harrison) shares his catchy new single ‘Parallel’, out now So Good So Good.

The infectious single, full of guitar-pop and vibrant melodies, is produced by Andy Hall (Bastille, Fickle Friends, James Gillespie) and reflects on social media and the damaging effects it can have on mental health.

Sounds like: Vampire Weekend, HAIM, Blossoms

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Overcoats – Fire & Fury

Overcoats

Overcoats is made up of critically acclaimed Brooklyn duo, Hana Elion and JJ Mitchell.

Channeling punk emergy with vulnerable vitality, their champion new single ‘Fire & Fury’ is equal parts dark and brooding as well as hopeful and anthemic – a dichotomy which is mirrored in the its soaring chorus “there’s a fire, there’s a fury, the sky is falling, but we’ll get through it.”

Watch the her Productions-directed video below.

Sounds like: The Magnettes, HAIM, First Aid Kit, Cold War Kids, The Violent Femmes

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Jesse Merineau – Honey

Jesse Merineau

Jesse Merineau shares his energetic new single ‘Honey’.

A sweet rendition of a simple track that hits you in all the right places. New, but not unfamiliar. Like a warm hug on a cold evening.

Sounds like: Viola Beach, King No-One, High Tyde

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Marina Kaye – The Whole 9

Marina Kaye

21 year old multi-platinum selling singer-songwriter Marina Kaye continues to heal wounds with her music.

Her twisted piece of alt-pop single ‘The Whole 9’ is a sultry rebirth with a superb vocal range and lush key changes throughout.

Sounds like: Dua Lipa, Lady Gaga

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Reva Devito – Bet You Stay

Reva Devito - Bet You Stay

We are super excited about Reva Devito‘s fresh hustle on soul and R&B.

The Portland native has already featured on some of the most recognizable tracks of KAYTRANADA, Young Franco, Chuck Inglish, and B.Bravo, as well and as the live vocalist for Australian indie-pop rising musicians Miami Horror.

Produced by longtime collaborator B.Bravo, ‘Bet You Stay’ is a nostalgic, slower jam. Smother this over your ears right now.

Sounds like: Janet Jackson, Aaliyah

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LeyeT – Here For You (Labit + LeyeT)

LeyeT

LeyeT (pronounced “light”) channels emotional vulnerability into alternative-pop songs with a solid heartbeat.

She’s teamed up her friend Labit on new single, ‘Here For You’ – a song about friendship, being there for each other through the highs and lows of life, and sticking together through it all. The song was written with the Make Sure Your Friends Are Okay initiative in mind, a community that encourages you to have meaningful discussions with people you care about – answering truthfully the question of ‘how are you?’.

Sounds like: Halsey, Imogen Heap

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dekleyn – See Right Through Me

dekleyn

The Sydney duo dekleyn shares new single ‘See Right Through Me’.

Writing infectious heartbreakers, their songs have meaningful influences throughout. Speaking about the new one – a lesson about love and forgiveness – they explain,

“The song is about giving so much to a person and becoming so close with them that they know everything about you, even more than you know about yourself. As the relationship begins to break down, it begins to become obvious that the two could never be without each other, “I don’t plan on leaving this feeling at all, this is all I have.”

Sounds like: LANY, joan, LAUV

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Ruben Dawnson – FYALMA

Ruben Dawnson

Phew! This is what we’ve been waiting for. A big “Fuck You!” to anxiety anthem!

Cue Norweigan artist/producer Ruben Dawnson and his emotionally expressive tuneage, namely ‘FYALMA’. Speaking about the track some more, he explains,

“It’s a big fuck you anthem to anxiety! Like many others I’ve been struggling with it for a long time… hopefully this can lift people’s spirit and I hope people will connect with it and scream out the lyrics!! I really want it to reach as many as possible and help create a big “fuck you” wave towards anxiety!!”

Sounds like: Day Wave, Hazel English, Summer Heart

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Small Talk – Alarm

Small Talk

Connecting at a music school in the Netherlands, the now duo Small Talk is making music to the standard of industry veterans, as it’s clear the understand what it takes to put together a hit, and have achieved that with ‘Alarm’.

Running the length between upbeat indie-pop and melancholic EDM, the pair masterfully play with different shades and moods. Expect much more from the youthful duo in 2020.

Sounds like: The Him, Bastille, The Chainsmokers, Imagine Dragons

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VEAUX – You Won’t Say That

VEAUX - You Won't Say That

Despite nearing their thirties, Nashville-based VEAUX is bustling with electro-pop energy that’s big on head and heart.

Although life so far might not have gone completely the way the trio planned, they’re taking the opportunity to connect with fans about it.

Expect the release of their 2020 Mixtape and see them on the upcoming national headlining tour.

Sounds like: LOYALS, Hardcastle, MILKK, 90’s Kids, Miike Snow

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BAILE – Leave Me feat. Kauf

BAILE - Leave Me feat. Kauf

In a perfect musical match, depressive house electronic producer, BAILE (aka Reed Kackley) teams up with Los Angeles-based vocalist, Kauf, who is best known for his ability to create music that can be so introvert and emotive, yet at the same time be sonic and mind-altering.

The new single ‘Leave Me’ starts out with simple chords (recorded by BAILE on an abandoned upright piano near the entrance of his rehearsal place) before the addition of empty beer bottles, analogue synths and acoustics bring the track to life. Kauf adds a narrative on impending heartache, beautifully articulating the agonising grief of lost love.

Listen below.

Sounds like: James Blake, Rhye, Fjord, SBTRKT, Asgeir, Solomon Grey

BAILE
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Kauf
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SYB – All I See (feat. Rypsa)

SYB

Full-time DJ and producer SYB shares his bright new future-bass single ‘All I See’, featuring the vocal talents of Rypsa.

The single is the lead single to his ‘Yacht’ EP, which is inspired by his frequent travels across the globe. The overall message is about positivity, which will hopefully creating more human connection between music lovers.

Sounds like: Ferreck Dawn, Illyus & Barrientos, The Him

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Weekly Gems 97

Jinka – U Bit My <3

Jinka by Yannic Pöpperling

Jinka by Yannic Pöpperling

German artist Jinka shares her explosive new single ‘U Bit My <3'. Channelling emo and urban vibes with a playful way with wonky arpeggios of synthesized steel drums and piano samples that intertwine with a trap-leaning beat.

Sounds like: Kate Boy, I BREAK HORSES, Sigrid

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DAD – Fresher

DAD - Fresher

DAD (aka bedroom pop singer/songwriter Kei Wells) shares her new single ‘Fresher’.

DAD has teamed up with Grammy-nominated Austrian producer, artist and pianist Yakob. Our favourite of hers to date, this declaration of independence is the ultimate single girl’s anthem, with electrified pop sequences infused with synth-pop juice.

Wrabel and Gallant will feature on her forthcoming EP.

Sounds Like: Lolo Zouaï, Doja Cat, Snow Tha Product, Lil Miquela, Clairo, Beabadoobie

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Emerson Leif – Next2

Emerson Leif

Brisbane-based Emerson Leif gives us a taste of his upcoming debut EP, ‘Bad Company’ with ‘Next2’.

It’s a soothing number and effortlessly cool (we wouldn’t expect anything less from Leif). Speaking about the track, he explains,

“It’s about realising you are valuable and loved. It’s about overcoming the fear of not being enough and embracing vulnerability through the process.”

Sounds like: Brolin, Bon Iver, Alex Vargas, TENDER, REFS

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Jon Olav – I Am The Thing

Jon Olav - I Am The Thing

We’re super excited about the sounds of Norwegian artist Jon Olav.

His new single ‘I Am The Thing’ opens with sparse piano chords (we instantly think James Blake), and bubbles into itself with deliciously sinister pop hooks and crystalline vocals as Olav looks inward to contemplate the pluses and minuses of attention.

Sounds like: James Blake, Sampha

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Approachable Members Of Your Local Community – Small Change

Approachable Members Of Your Local Community

With the best name we’ve seen for a long while, Approachable Members Of Your Local Community (let’s call them AMOYLC for short) releases the catchy ‘Small Change’.

The quartet – who met at school – fuse elements of indie, electro, funk and disco into their unapologetically spirited sound. But their new single ‘Small Change’ has a serious message. Dedicated to the firefighters and communities affected by the Australian fires, “it’s clear that small change can have a big impact.”

Sounds like: APRE, Vampire Weekend

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Molina – Vanilla Shell

Molina

Self-made art creator and songwriter Molina shares her bold single, ‘Vanilla Shell’, the title track taken from her new EP.

The sparse and inventive song weaves textured vocals with a fluttering flute and fretless bass into a psychedlic trip about love and youth, with captivating nods to the eras of 1960, 70 and 80.

Sounds like: IDER, Talking Heads, Cocteau Twins, Pink Floyd

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Gold Member – Stay On

Gold Member

Gold Member is a three-piece of producers and singer/songwriters.

Crossing genres between funk, soul and pop, their new single ‘Stay On’ is an easy, breezy piece of charge-soaked, soulful pop with a topical headline about Indigenous identity in white Australia, and the struggles of living in a system of cultural oppression.

Sounds like: Jungle, Michael Kiwanuka, TENDER

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Chaz Cardigan – Not Ok!

Chaz Cardigan - Not Ok!

What an anthem – ‘Not Ok!’ by Nashville based pop lothario Chaz Cardigan, released on Capitol Records/Loud Robot.

The track is an infectious tune about human imperfection, which sees Cardigan laid bare, both lyrically and visually. The Al Kalyk-directed video also features an astonishing number of gummy bears…

Sounds like: Harry Styles, Declan McKenna

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argonaut&wasp – TVS

argonaut&wasp

Wonderful duo argonaut&wasp is back with ‘TVS’.

A daydream about endless summer days, it’s the perfect antidote for a wet and cold January. The song was crafted early one morning using a drum loop and an oberheim synthesizer and is a call to a honeycoated time of romance and yearning.

Sounds like: MGMT, CHAPPO, Modest Mouse, Talking Heads, Phoenix, Pistol Shrimp, VHS Collection

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Max Leone – First Grade

Max Leone - First Grade

20-year-old songwriter/producer/instrumentalist Max Leone is The Darkroom‘s newest addition.

He shares his new single ‘First Grade’, which deals with disappointment. It’s a stunning debut, defined by his acoustic-driven songwriting combined with electronic-tinged, urban-pop production.

After attending Berklee College Of Music for one year, Leone headed to the bright lights of Los Angeles to pursue his dream of music full time, and it’s clearly paying off.

Sounds like: The Neighbourhood, LANY, Bring Me The Horizon, Billie Eilish, SHY Martin, Khalid

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