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INsiders Guide

INsiders Guide: Elina, Devan, DYLYN, X. ARI, GHOSTE, MC Mario + Hoss, The Accents, Miesha & The Spanks, Shirazee, Yana Toma, The Blackmordia, Petit Biscuit, Serena Sun, Layla Kardan, Bakermat, Summer Salt, Gillian Heidi, Front Country….

(Photo Credit: Hampus Hjellström)

Swedish artist and renowned songwriter Elina (real name Elina Stridh) has released her anticipated sophomore EP, Remember. The EP can be streamed in full now here.

A project that has blossomed alongside a string of gorgeous singles released starting fall 2019, the EP marks a distinct period of growth and self-realization for the budding artist and songwriter. Elina notes:

  • “This EP is all about embracing change. About accepting that everything is transient. I’ve had a complicated relationship to change all my life and I’ve learned this about myself more than ever while writing these songs. They reflect a lot of what’s been going on in my own head and in my personal life this past year. It’s been therapeutic as always, writing alongside life. I’ve started letting go of the control I try to have over the uncontrollable. I’ve started taking care of my mental health in several ways. I think I’ve become a little more aware of the root of the anxiety I’ve had over the past few years and I’ve found new ways to cope with it. Even though there is a sentimental undertone to the music I want this chapter to be a bright one. I want it to spark new ways of thinking, just like it did for me. The end of something is always the beginning of something else. We love, let go and love again. We make new memories, find new paths. We’re all on a constant journey trying to navigate through life, and with every experience, we become a little wiser. I want to reach a point where I can stand before change without being scared of it. It is so important to be true to yourself and not stay in places, with people or in situations where you don’t feel happy. Most of the time it’s just the monsters in our own head stopping us from exploring the love and happiness out there for us.”

The Remember EP is the pinnacle of a breakout year for Elina, whose songs have garnered 150MM+ Spotify streams and counting. Approaching her songwriting from a more stripped-back, organic angle, the EP is a stunning collection of lyrically-rich, delicately understated pop gems. The first taste of the EP came fall 2019 with the gorgeous, folk-inspired single “Free,” which was featured on multiple Spotify ‘New Music Friday’ playlists and saw love from outlets like 1883 Magazine and EUPHORIA. Single “Another Round” followed, which Ladygunn praised, noting, “The piano driven song is soaked with Elina’s raw voice.”

Elina kicked off 2020 with single “Paper Planes,” which saw love from Flaunt, who proclaimed that Elina “[combines] her hauntingly beautiful voice with her lyrical finesse in her new tour de force.” Watch the “Paper Planes” official video here. Spring 2020 single “Blue” is another intimate, lyrical masterpiece, drawing love from Complex, who called the song a “stripped-back piece that sets her delicate vocals against an acoustic guitar as she tells her tale of finding closure in the wake of a break-up.”

In May 2019, Elina released her debut EP, In Hindsight, a bold first statement sparking standout singles “Wild Enough,” “Champion,” and “Here With Me,” which have garnered 100MM+ Spotify streams alone.

Before debuting her artist project in April 2018, Elina had already made an impression as a highly sought-after songwriter, penning hits for artists such as Zara LarssonAstrid SNEIKED (“Sexual”), among many more.

Credit 〰️ Sean Blomfield

Almost” is about not being able to give 100% of yourself to a relationship. That positive feeling of loving someone, coupled with the confusion of not yet being ready to dive in and commit.

Listen to “Almost” featuring Corey Harper now on your preferred platform, produced by Adam Boukis (Timbaland, Icona Pop, Saweetie, and Bruno Martini).

I’ve been a fan of Corey Harper’s music for a long time – he’s got one of my favourite voices. The song was originally written on piano, but Corey suggested a guitar part which we loved and ended up keeping as the backbone for the song.

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My co-writer, Kyle Reynolds, and I were discussing how the idea of settling down has always scared us, and we wrote “Almost” about not wanting to hold someone else back while you’re still figuring out your own shit.
Your early twenties are a strange adjustment period because things change rapidly in such a short period of time – relationships, living situations, career paths, aspirations. Growing up and evolving is great, but the flip side of that for me was losing sight of who I thought I was and what I wanted.
I hope this song brings comfort to anyone in a similar situation; someone young and full of uncertainty, with a lot of big decisions to make.

 Thank you for listening,

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When you first feel that glimmer of falling for someone, it can feel strong, wild, emotional, dark, lovely – all in one millisecond.
You can see yourself with that person, you look to the future, and you cherish the moments spent with them.
My new song, “Let You,” captures the ride of those first few months.
The discovery of a new love is the best part of it all.
I’m very excited to show you the video I shot for this song. It encapsulates the wild ride of love and bending the journey with danger, darkness and falling off the deep end.
Watch the “Let You” video on YOUTUBE now.
You can also listen to the track on SPOTIFY ⚡️ SOUNDCLOUD.
Let You” was written with Ryan Guldemond. It was the second tune we penned together and once again it was effortless. My trip to Vancouver had been postponed because my grandmother, who was an opera singer, had passed away. I showed Ryan some of my videos of her singing to my little cousin. We decided to turn her haunting operatic vocal into the synth hook at the beginning of the record. We called it the “gram hook,” through which she lives within the song forever.
I want you to go back to your first few moments of love as you listen to “Let You.”
That discovery of a new person, or one you haven’t met yet.
The early days of love are intoxicating. I hope you hit replay and relive your own story again and again.

X.ARI, the Toronto born songstress deftly dances in and out of genre lines, moving from enchanting alternative pop to gritty hip-hop production under a cover of electronic elegance. All the while, her visceral lyrics transmit messages of hope as often as they ponder tragedy. It is the mixture of those two elements when X.ARI’s sound and voice come to life.

The identity and name X.ARI is a persona that was adopted amidst working on her debut “Tunnel Vision” EP in 2015, which she has stated “became the birth of a totally new process”. She goes on to say “In Nordic, ARI means eagle and in Hebrew, it means lion. It is more me than I’ve ever been”.

X.ARI finds healing and her unapologetic voice in her music. As someone who struggles with mental illnesses she dedicates much of her time and energy into her Pain into Power campaign by sharing her story and focusing on self care and well being in regards to one’s mental health. X. ARI’s music is aimed to serve as a vehicle for expression. “We don’t need to be defined by labels and we can turn our weakness into strength with a lot of self love, radical acceptance, support, therapy, and consistency. If I can get through my traumas and turn pain into power, so can you” is one of her anchoring beliefs and much of the purpose behind her latest web series ‘Self Care Sunday’.

GHOSTE is the ethereal electropop musical chimera of award-winning singer-songwriter, Jenny Bruce, and Producer/Composer, Matt Anthony. Immersed in the complex layers of midlife adulting, Bruce had been haunted by a painful memory of her mother telling her repeatedly that, “At 50, you become invisible. Nobody sees you or listens to you anymore.”  Determined to prove the opposite, Bruce decided that being invisible is a choice. Being silent is a choice. She called Anthony and together, they planned the concept for what would become her debut album as GHOSTE.

Bruce says about GHOSTE, “The E is silent. I am not.”

In 2019, Canadian premier DJ & Producer, MC Mario, teamed up with Producer, DJ and Label Director, Hoss, to form their world-class duo act to release their first single “The Game”. Shortly thereafter, they created their next smash hit “No Xplanation”, remixed by Swedish House legend, StoneBridge. “No Xplanation” is gaining traction on the radio waves and is quickly becoming a house music fan favorite.

The Accents debut EP ‘Still On Film’, is a 4-song collection of personal experiences from over the course of the last year. We wrote these songs as we were both learning the careful act of balancing and maintaining a relationships. A sense of nostalgic longing and youthful optimism, set to a backdrop of colourful synths, punchy drums and catchy melodies.

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The EP features the earlier released singles ‘Life In a Video’ and ‘Talk It Over’, and is completed with our new songs ‘Sundown’ and the powerful pop ballad ‘Maybe Hereafter’.

Listen to ‘Still On Film here: * Spotify * Apple MusicSoundcloud *

Miesha & The Spanks are a high octane garage rock duo from Calgary AB, made up of rock n roll matriarch Miesha Louie and her partner in crime, the hardest hitting Sean Hamilton on drums. Together they draw inspiration from classics like The Runaways, L7, and The Buzzcocks to create some modern noise that’s catchy enough to raise a fist and sing along.

Noise Journal describes them as “a filthy rocket of pure jet-fuel up the nostril, with surf rock sensibilities, a grunge groove and hair metal swagger,” while Canadian Beats called their last album “reminiscent of Queens of the Stone Age meets The Animals – a certain coolness about it, making it impossible to forget.”

NYC-based Afropop fusion singer-songwriter Shirazee recruits South African singer-songwriter and poet Busiswa (Beyonce’s Gift / Black Is King) for an epic cross-continental Amapiano collaboration on “Right Thang.” The new single – which premiered with MistaJam on BBC Radio 1 – is lifted from Shirazee’s 6-track Lost EP due out October 23rd via Human Re Sources.

“Right Thang” will have you grooving from the couch with it’s irresistible dance beat. The seductive tune, layered with mesmerizing drums, came naturally for both Shirazee and Busiswa as fans of each other’s work prior to the feature. One connect through their publisher (Sony/ATV) and the magic ensued. On the Modern Day Auteur-directed music video out globally now, 1883 Magazine raves, “Duetting on a split-screen, with a few cheeky interactions and eventual meetups, the video follows parallel storylines as both artists go throughout their daily routines; the song is the perfect anthemic accompaniment to their joyous on-screen energy. The video makes the most of COVID-19 travel restrictions, as both Shirazee and Busiswa amplify their individual surroundings. From singing in taxi cabs to dancing in city streets, sprinkler-laden backyards, and living room couches, the ‘Right Thang’ music video shows off a wonderful sense of shared connectivity that inherently brightens an already fun song.”

Shirazee explains, “I was in South Africa in January and connected with the wonderful Busiswa to create this Amapiano song. The genre was just taking off in full effect. We made ‘Right Thang’ in one session. The energy, the authenticity in the studio and everything all around us was so great – you can hear it in the song. Everything about it makes me happy, From Benin and South Africa linking up on a smooth banger to representing our continent once again proudly and taking our sounds to the world… it’s a beautiful thing, it’s the ‘right thang.’” Busiswa also notes, “I actually found out about Shirazee from DJ Tunez shows in New York so when we were connected, I knew I had to make space in my schedule for him. I appreciate his songwriting so much and I really wanted to make something happen with the time that he was here. The rest is history… I took him to the hood, I took him to the producers I always work with, and we had a lot of fun collaborating naturally. At this point in our journeys where the world’s eyes are on Africa, it’s really special to me to work with the kind of artist that understands the message, the language, and the legacy we want to leave. We are proud and we got it goin’ on!” Shirazee adds, “I thought it was key to see it through visually as well. The idea was to make something fun and still dope while bypassing the main issue of not being able to travel to South Africa to shoot it. I shot my parts in NYC with director Modern Day Auteur and had a team with Busiswa shoot hers in Johannesburg. We planned it together across continents and added some fun spontaneous shots on the New York side that aligned with the South African side. I’m glad everyone who has seen it so far really enjoys it, makes me feel like the challenges were all worth it.”

Following the success of her debut single “Next 2 You”, London r&b/soul singer Yana Toma keeps her releases consistent and her increasing fanbase happy with her next single “Drunk Text” 2 months later.

 Whilst “Next 2 You” showed a vulnerable side to the fast-rising singer, “Drunk Text” shows another side to Yana, singing candidly about female empowerment. The fierce and inspiring song lyrics will move inspire those that have been in similar positions. It champions putting your self worth first and not letting anyone take you for granted. Set to a backdrop of staccato guitars and slinking bass, it’s an Afrobeat-tinted summer breeze of a song whose lyrics leave you in no mistake of who’s in charge.

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Yana Toma says “Drunk text is about someone not realising your worth and playing too many games and you realising that they ain’t shit and no one is worth compromising your self worth for, so now they all over you trying to win you back over because you’re not giving them no time of day”

Parisian alt-synth-rock band The Blackmordia unveil dark 80s synth-pop-influenced single ‘XX’ –STREAM ‘XX’ HERE via Throne Music, the first cut taken from their upcoming debut album.

Heavily influenced by lead singer Peter Moisan’s own life experiences, the song tackles mental health issues and their effect on love and relationships. “It’s an open letter to Love. Love can make you the happiest person on earth but also the saddest. The song explores the different stages of love and the behaviours lovers display. Sensuality, temptation, culpability, remorse”, he explainsReflecting on the musical inspirations behind the song founder and drummer $ofiane Seddiki says, “’XX” is one of the songs we wrote first, it’s a perfect reflection of The Blackmordia’s sound and our influences, from 70s black music, 80’s rock-pop, New Wave and Glam”.

Directed by Bastien Sableì, known for his video work with some of the biggest French hip hop artists and featuring French modelMaya Otsokowho has also appeared in editorials for C-Heads Magazine, The Forumist, Normal Magazine and Vulkan, the video is a beautifully shot visual representation of the themes behind the song. Aesthetically dark, its undeniable homage to the 80s music videos aesthetic is filtered through a rock sensibility. Formed by $ofiane Seddiki when he was only 15 years old, The Blackmordia have already built a significant fan base in France. “Being DIY meant I had to quickly learn how the music business worked. I decided to sign the band to my own record label and publishing company, Throne Music, which also gave me the amazing experience and opportunity to become a music executive, signing and developing artists to major record labels”, $ofiane explains. The band’s first single ‘God’, released in 2018, launched them onto the live circuit and opened the doors to support slots for KISSBring Me The Horizon and Tokio Hotel. After last year’s European tour with Nothing But Thieves and Deaf Havana, The Blackmordia been working on their upcoming debut album between Throne Music studio in Paris and Peter’s own studio in London with the help of various producers and mixing engineers including, Grammy-nominated Chris Galland (Dua Lipa, The 1975, Christine & The Queens, Lizzo) and British Geoff Swan (Ed Sheeran, The Weeknd, Coldplay).

PETIT BISCUIT PARACHUTE French producer, composer, and songwriter Petit Biscuit has announced his forthcoming Parachute LP -out October 30th via Écurie. The project finds Petit Biscuit coming into his own as an introspective lyricist with explorations of love, war, and death alongside his self-assured step into the  local spotlight. Parachute features nine tracks including the recently released “Drivin ThruThe Night” that chart his progression from teen wunderkind to undeniable auteur. Petit Biscuit explains, “Parachute is a much more personal record than Presence. In the years since Presence came out, I’ve seen a lot of new places and met a lot of new people, which has opened up my mind to new ideas. Before I started writing this album, I wasn’t confident writing lyrics that were super personal and now I’m muchmore confident bringing my own perspective to themes like love and war and death. I’ve always been able to express my emotions through composition, but Parachute is me learning how to express myself through words. Presence was a wild ride and while it was cool to see the world, I really toured for two straight years. I realized afterward that that was too much–I didn’t realize how much pressure I was putting on myself. My medicine in 2019 was taking time away to write this album. I needed to isolate myself to just focus on music and figure out what this album would sound like. That’s why the album is called Parachute–I needed to try new things and take some risks with how I was writing, but I knew that once I figured everything out I’d land safely.

I feel that in today’s world, there are so many people who push away their personal pains by seeking daily distractions; whether that be through unhealthy relationships, obsessions with social media, or substance abuse. I confess to doing just that in my own life.

The song I am sharing with you, Everyone I Run From,” was written in the wake of realizing I had been dealing with lingering trauma from a past relationship. I craved a cleanse from my past hurt, which I was only able to achieve through self-reflection and a desire for change.

The music video for this track is very special to me because it is directed, edited, and shot by some of my closest friends who I’ve worked with in the past. 

Director, Paul Fajilan, used horses in the video to symbolize freedom, capturing how this is only found by moving together with one’s past instead of disconnecting from it. Sometimes it feels like the bad memories haunt us, but in reality, they are just there, existing as a part of our individual stories

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My hope is that “Everyone I Run From” helps you reflect on your own past in a healthy way.

Serena Sun

Layla Kardan unveils ‘You’, the first single taken from her upcoming EP ‘Abscission’, set for release on 26th February 2021.

‘You’ is a powerful ode to freedom, a personal and empowering journey through loss-love and self-discovery. It’s the product of Layla’s search for independence, achieved by untangling herself from unhealthy relationships. In Layla own words, “it’s about the constant struggle of remaining independent and yet always falling into the arms of possessive men incapable of handling my strength. The constant pull to retain a position of power ultimately sees the relationship fail and overturn for the last time”.

Part of a new generation of fearless creative talent redefining music, fashion and culture in Dubai, Layla works closely with A’Y,the music producer pushing new sounds in the region. With credits includingcuts with TLC and Pusha T, for ‘You’, the sought after artist created a sound palette in which dark and percussive elements contrast with the subtle soundscape putting Layla’s lead vocals at the front of the mix.

Shot in the desert, with limited resources during Dubai lock down, the visual for ‘You’ was directed by Mad Juice – the creative agency responsible for putting Arab girls in historical pictures for Puma’s ME campaign – with creative director Rabih Rowell and ex-Vice DoP Kais Dahoul helping bringing the song’s dark sonics to life through strong images and a colour palette that explore the pain, desire and personal growth of Layla’s lyrics. While the video is controversial for the Middle East standards, the forward-thinking Dubai creative team’s aim is to create something that connects with an international audience and bring cultural change within the region.

Layla is a Third Culture Kid, born in Belgium with Persian roots and Australian nationality, she currently lives in Dubai, her cross cultural background has influenced her music and, which is deeply rooted in human nature and aims to transcend cultural boundaries. Part of the new scene of artists redefining the Sound of the Middle East, Layla is more of a music artist, from working with charities including Unicef on the education of refugee children, to collaborating with some of the biggest fashion brands and including Louis Vuitton and Chanel , as well as publications including Harper’s BazaarGQ, GraziaVogue and Esquire, with the latter awarding her their Musician of The Year in 2018.

With ‘You’, Layla is set to make an impact on the international music scene as a bold artist, capable of creating an intriguing musical world made of brooding, electro, r&b-tinged pop.

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Lodewijk Fluttert, better known by his stage name Bakermat, announces the inclusion of his platinum summer hit “Baianá” (which surpassed 100 million global streams) now on the official soundtrack for EA SPORTS FIFA21.

FIFA 21 was developed by EA Vancouver and EA Romania and will be available worldwide on October 9, 2020 for PlayStation®4, Xbox One, and PC via Origin™ and Steam. Follow all the news in the EA SPORTS FIFA community on FacebookInstagram and twitter @easportsfifa.

In recent years, Bakermat has experienced many high-profile moments in his career, including his own stage at Tomorrowland, his own festivals (including the infamous Bakermat’s Circus experience), as well as many international tours and shows, but there was still an eager boy’s dream that he wanted to fulfill, namely one of his songs in his favorite game.

The soundtrack including “Baianá” can be heard officially in the game on October 9, but here you can already see a unique preview that was created between Bakermat, EA SPORTS and FC Twente

Avenue G is now a landmark for us, the heart of Austin tx, where we started. We wanted to make an ep dedicated to that and start a chronicle for songs that we wrote when we were younger, revisit them, and bring them back to life. I think it’s a nice way of revisiting the past and displaying our history musically through lyrics and the songs. It’s interesting in writing a lot of time you find yourself outgrowing something whether that be the musicality of the song or the message of the song itself, but those moments lived in our history and there will always be others who can connect, relate, and find inspiration for the message even if that’s not where we are today. I think that’s why this felt nice and exciting for us. 

Based in Austin, TX, Summer Salt blends vibrant yet breezy vocal harmony and colorful elements of 1960s pop, Bossa Nova and jazz. The group was originally formed around the talents of Matthew Terry (vocalist/guitarist) and Eugene Chung (drummer) during their senior year of high school. In 2012 the band fledged away from their hometown to pursue music in Austin TX, where they began writing their first EP Driving to Hawaii

Driving to Hawaii (2014), contains the essence of a never-ending vacation and is rich in guitar pop and silky harmonies that is reminiscent of the Beach Boys. The EP features fan favorites such as “Sweet to Me”, “Rockaway”, and of course their title track, “Driving to Hawaii”, which has iconically represented the basis of all Summer Salt lyrics: trying to slow down and enjoy the ride of chasing what appears to be an unattainable pipe dream. 

Their next release, Going Native (2015), was inspired by a trip abroad where Terry began diving into artists such as Joao Gilberto, Antonio Carlos Jobim, and Gilberto Gil which lead to a new writing direction using Latin elements. Succeeding the energetic and live sounds of Going Native, So Polite (2017), was the perfect appetizer for the band’s debut full-length album, the wildly colorful, Happy Camper (2018) which features a more polished production quality from Sub-Pop stalwart Phil Ek (Fleet Foxes, The Shins). The duo then released Honeyweed (2019) which fused indie pop with components of Brazilian tropicalia and 60’s folk drawing inspiration from seasoned topics of loss and renewal.

Summer Salt’s latest offering is the four track EP entitled Avenue G.  With songs dedicated to the heart of Austin Texas to where the duo started, Avenue G is a revival EP featuring tracks written when the band was younger.  The duo revisited these songs and brought them back to life with a fresh twist.  The infectious single “Little Legs” is Summer Salt’s first pure pop tune. Detailing how strength is more than a physical trait and more importantly emotional and mental, Summer Salt urges fans to embrace themselves and find some sort of peace in true acceptance. 

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The melodic ensemble has cultivated a loyal following with their endless summer, ocean dream music that can be heard in influences such as the Lovin’ Spoonful, Donovan, Frankie Valli, the lovely Lady Day or other musical genres of 1960s Rocksteady or African Highlife.

Photo Credit: Jenn Curtis

It’s been a monumental year for singer-songwriter Gillian Heidi and she’s showing no signs of slowing down. Today, the pop newcomer is sharing the official music video for “desperate,” one of the singles from her upcoming debut album, 3AM. 

The full-bodied R&B-pop track is brought to life in the new visual directed by Austin Barbera of SixTwentySix. Created in the midst of quarantine, they opted to film remotely using a green screen to transport Gillian into a kaleidoscopic, Y2K-inspired world.

Though just sixteen years old, Boston-native Gillian demonstrates a musicality wise beyond her years. With powerful, reflective lyrics, rich vocal chops, and clever pop melodies, her songs are relatable but never predictable. She chronicles life’s ups and downs, ebbs and flows, and trials and tribulations with thoughtful clarity, poetic eloquence, and a stirring soulful voice.

As it does, music essentially chose Gillian. Rather than waking up crying in her crib, she typically arose from slumber by singing. Inspired by her older brother, she picked up piano at just four-years-old, penning her first composition only a year later. With dad keeping a guitar around the house, she grabbed it at the age of twelve and taught herself how to play. Under the influence of everyone from Taylor Swift to Ella Mai, the teen singer-songwriter dove into assembling what would become her independent debut EP, Unfiltered.

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Gillian made her debut with the release of her 2019 EP, Unfiltered and the lead single, “What It Felt Like,” impressively tallied 200K Spotify streams — no small feat for an unsigned artist’s debut. She kicked off 2020 with a slew of new singles, “high,” “static,” “desperate,” and her most recent pop ballad, “fray.” With her debut album, 3AM, on the horizon, Gillian Heidi is quickly emerging as a pop newcomer to watch out for.

Front Country is a band on the precipice of a metamorphosis. As multi-instrumentalists, songwriters and composers, the instrumentation and setting have always been secondary to the musical vision that comes through no matter what stage they take. For a band with a genre in their name, genre has always been elusive for Front Country, as they refuse to pick sides or be constrained by any expectations outside their own singular aesthetic. From their beginnings in the SF Bay Area to their new hometown of Nashville, TN, Melody Walker, Adam Roszkiewicz and Jacob Groopman have been on a journey to discover a sound. 

While making their third album – their first in Music City – they feel closer than ever to what fans have heard in them all along. SLC Weekly called it “Rugged Americana and Purposeful Pop”, and that seems as close as anything to describe the Front Country sound. To them, their namesake is about pushing the envelope, but never losing sight of their roots.

JANE HANDCOCK “FA REAL” Fresh from the release of the soulful, nostalgic release ‘90’s Love’, emerging singer-songwriter Jane Handcock unveils her highly anticipated project, “Fa Real”. With a want for listeners to find solace in her music, the Oakland singer-songwriter born Myariah Summers continues to use her multi-faceted talent as a way of self-expression and the result is aunique, strong body of work reflecting the artist’s skills in both song and rap. Creating the project whilst moving between the Bay and LA, Jane’s ability to create relatable music for her fan base and supporters a like hasn’t gone unnoticed, as she shows immense growth and maturity’s in the release of 2018’s “Where’s Jane? Series 1”. Her journey in today’s scene is both admirable and in spiring. Speaking on the project she said: “I feel like, with everything going on this year, I want to give people honesty & transparency.

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After an unprecedented start to 2020, KSR Records Recording Artist/Songwriter Sammy Wilk returns today with his second single of the year, reuniting with longtime friend and collaborator, JVCKJ for the emotionally-charged “In Between.” [Click here to listen]

Backed by a mid-tempo track driven by an ominous mandolin and trap-inspired drums, Sammy once again taps into the authenticity and honesty that has always driven his music. On “In Between” he bares his soul as he examines the darker side of the lavish lifestyle afforded to him by his success. Throughout the song, both Sammy and JVCKJ pack lyrics like the hook “I feel like I’m swimming in between, in between real life and fantasy,” with a palatable raw emotion. And while the subject at hand is heavy, the song feels like a moment of clarity where with an added boost of hopeful energy.

The track features long-time collaborator JVCKJ—best known for being one half of the multi-platinum pop duo Jack & Jack. Having grown up together in Nebraska, Sammy has partnered with both members of the group on music and social media content. “In Between” serves as the second offering from JVCKJ as a solo artist. Last month, he debuted with single “You Lie,” that paints a true picture of how two people in a relationship can find themselves caught up in a vicious cycle of pain. Despite his previous sonic identity as part of Jack & Jack, this new venture will show a true yet different side of Jack’s musical ability.

Since the release of his 2016 debut EP Ready For WarSammy Wilk has connected with millions of fans over multiple platforms simply by allowing his authenticity and purity of spirit to shine through in all that he does. His music has always been a balanced blend, borrowing from the many genres that have shaped him as an artist – from Reggae and Ska to Rock to Hip-Hop & R&B. In 2019, he widened the scope of his sound, constructing a collection of songs that detailed the highs and lows of relationships for his EP Keep It In The Middle. “I find myself shifting through different genres, so nothing from me will sound the exact same, but with that I have found the type of music that I enjoy creating the most,” explains Wilk. And what he enjoys creating most is music that simply makes him happy.

Billboard-charting, acclaimed rapper Dougie F releases his highly anticipated new project Without A Smile via STRAGG Records. Providing six string-of-smashes with production from Marzi, WondaGurl, & Mike Zombie, the project chronicles the heartfelt, transformative experiences Dougie endured and has overcome amid harsh realities growing up as a child. Moreover, the project magnifies his mentality behind the rise out of the 108 projects. Without Out Smile arrives today as part one of an installment.

Today’s release is herald by the premiere of his track “Beast,” featuring fellow NJ native TSU Surf, which was praised by HipHopDxThe Source and more. Earlier this week Travis Scott’s .WAV Radio premiered a short preview of another track from Dougie’s studio effort “Luka.” After the tease, the track later sent social media into a frenzy— increasing global anticipation for today’s heavy-hitting release.

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Techno-Pop superstars Giolì & Assia return with their brand-new single “Hands On Me,” available today via Ultra

“Hands On Me” is an emotionally empowering anthem that exudes the duo’s much loved unique sound and signature instrumentation, placing them in a league of their own. On the track, Giolì & Assia effortlessly unleash their slick and catchy verses over their worldly production.

Listen/Share “Hands On Me” HERE
Giolì & Assia have been steadily building momentum for the arrival of MOON FACES, their first EP with Ultra Records, and follow-up to their 2018 album Istantanee. This follows the release of “For You,” a high octane explosion of techno and indie-pop released earlier this year as a preview of what’s to come in this new era of music.

Japanese music group millennium parade are a collective of creative individuals – including musicians, film directors, visual effects artists, designers, and illustrators – organized by producer, songwriter, and frontman of J-Pop band King Gnu, Daiki Tsuneta. In perfect synergy with their multimedia concept, the innovative group was selected for the new ‘Ghost in the Shell: SAC_2045’ series on Netflix, with their track “Fly with me” serving as theme song to the reimagined iconic anime. The single also received an epic remix from celebrated DJ/producer Steve Aoki and brought the group international acclaim. Their intrigue and undeniable artistry also landed the group a partnership with DIOR and most recently Tsnueta was selected as the face for a Coach x Jean-Michel Basquiat collaboration campaign.

Continuing the trend of incredible brand alignments, millennium parade’s new single “Philip” was chosen for a Japanese commercial sync with iconic sportswear brand Adidas, which launched on September 17th. In addition to the placement, Daiki Tsuneta was also selected as a new Adidas Global Ambassador and appeared in the commercial for their Alpe/DEPO limited edition “Adidas CASUAL Collection F/W 2020″ – watch here.

Released today via Sony Japan, “Philip” is a genre-blending track with gritty electronic-punk meets hip-hop production that lays the foundation for the hypnotic vocals and profound rhymes. The incredible visual creatives within millennium parade evolved the songs concept into a powerful anime story of the fight for forbidden love, equality and acceptance. The video treatment started with the idea of a letter from the protagonist Stan (a dog), who knows he is facing certain assassination, to his unborn son Philip expressing how love overcomes different ideologies, and is passed down to posterity. Further explaining the evolved narrative, millennium parade shared, “It’s the story of a Doberman who severed the roots of discrimination. The anguish of facing different principles in a discriminatory society. A story of hope from the perspective of millennium parade.”

Amassing over 100 million streams and receiving critical acclaim from Billboard, NPR, Complex, Essence, V Man, Teen VOGUE and many more, rising Long Beach singer/songwriter Givēon unveils a new EP entitled When It’s All Said And Done today.

Get it HERE via Epic Records.

The surprise four-track project reflects the scope of his expansive and enigmatic style. Earlier this week, He previewed the EP with the single “Stuck On You.” Givēon’s deep baritone resounds alongside lush piano for one last late-night confession. Warm vocals thread around dreamy guitar on “Still Your Best” where he pleads, “Are you serious? Are you kidding me? What’s the deal. During “Last Time” [feat. Snoh Aalegra], he locks into a call-and-response with Snoh as airy production echoes beneath their intimate invitation to “come over. The track sustains a collaborative partnership as Snoh invited him to open her 2019 headline tour. Bringing everything together, the project serves as a continuation of his debut EP TAKE TIME“I want everyone to know this project has a story being told from start to finish and I was very particular with the Sonics; as if I was scoring a film” says Givēon.

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Five days after the death of George Floyd, during the emotional protests and social unrest that followed, I began writing my new single, “Standing With You.”

During this period, I read a pamphlet that was circulated immediately after the lynching of Emmett Till. It felt eerily like it was written yesterday and got me thinking. I began asking a lot of questions about what really needs to happen so that we can stop repeating this same cycle of hate and injustice over and over. The seeds of what would become “Standing With You” were sown as I considered these issues. The message of this song is one of empathy and solidarity. It is a promise to do better and the hope that if we can move forward together as one, we can see real changes.

Standing With You” is released Oct. 2nd on Bandcamp Friday, with all sales on release day going to organizations which support Black and Indigenous communities. Watch the official music video on YouTube, as well.

We wanted to create a feeling that was sombre and honest in recognition of the lives which have been senselessly taken by police brutality. “Standing With You” is meant to be uplifting in the hope that we can give you a sense of urgency to shake any sense of complacency and to listen to each other with greater empathy.

We must get up and actively oppose corruption within the institutions who are supposed to serve and protect their citizens.

Thank you for listening,

Eunice Keitan 

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Jesse Palter returns with her new single, “BETTER DAYS,” which explores the magic of artistic collaboration that can occur and bind the creative despite the limitations of time and distance. Reflective and slightly optimistic, this tune is co-produced by Jesse with Jake Bass (Eminem) and features notable musicians Jeff Babko (music director for Jimmy Kimmel, James Taylor) and Ben Williams on the keys and bass, respectively.

The song was written over Zoom and each segment of the song was recorded in everyone’s individual living spaces due to quarantine restrictions; a fitting tribute considering “Better Days” was written in and is about the quarantine lockdown. As Palter puts it herself “Now, more than ever, I trust you understand, just as I trust that there are better days to come.”

(Photo Courtesy: Orin Fleurmont)

MUNI LONG, singer, songwriter and sonic anomaly – ambiguous of any specific genre or aesthetic, makes her official debut today with the release a brand new single and video titled “Midnight Snack” featuring R&B sensation and actor, Jacob Latimore. With a highly stylized creative concept, helmed by stylist and designer Jason Rembert and directed by Phillip R. Lopez, “Midnight Snack” takes audiences into an alternative world fueled by desire, passion, soul and erotica.

Photo Credit: Jen Barker

Vancouver musician Kele Fleming’s new album The Song I’ll Write For My Whole Life is out today on all digital platforms.

The launch of Kele’s new album follows the release of her new single and video, Sea In Me’, last week. Kele wrote ‘Sea In Me’ after visiting the Giant Pacific Octopus at the Vancouver Aquarium and feeling sad for the octopus, isolated on its own in a small aquarium. The song is full of longing and love and mystery and the importance of connection, which all comes shining through in the music video.

Filmed by videographer R.d. Cane at Spanish Banks in Vancouver, the video was shot during the pandemic and the absence of Kele in the video (except for a brief cameo at the beginning and end) is intentional.  R.d. thought it was important to focus the video on the beauty of the place and the sea and how the meaning of the song is connected to the sea.

“A lot of people are hurting right now and they don’t need to see an artist dancing around to her own music,” says Kele. “Give them the beauty of this place and something to take their minds off of everything. Give them something beautiful to look at while they’re taking in the lush complexity of the song.”

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