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INsiders Guide: Mimi Webb, Crimson Calamity, Susan Darvishi, Vaness, Tessa Violet, Toni Romiti, WYNNE, Only Bricks, The Prototypes, Lucid Express, Blackson, Good Job Honey, Miranda Joan, Eden James, Newspoke, Elephants and Stars, Alex Beraldo, Twin Diver, Michaela Slinger….

Generating 22 million-plus streams and averaging nearly 1 million per day since its arrival last month, UK pop singer and songwriter Mimi Webb unveils the music video for her buzzing new single “Good Without” today. Leading up to the music video premiere, Mimi Webb answered fan questions for the via YouTube Livestream using Rodeo.

Watch it HERE via YouTube/Vevo

Listen HERE via EPIC Records.

Directed by Pip + Lib, the clip begins with Mimi in her bedroom surrounded by her girlfriends. Soon, the post-breakup sorrow turns into ebullient energy. She tries on various outfits and undergoes a rejuvenating glam routine only to emerge more confident than ever alongside of her girl gang. The visual brings the lyrics to life as the chorus rings out, “I’m so good without.”

Of the video, Mimi commented, “It’s very girl power. You’re trying to get over it and move on, but you need your friends. It isn’t all heartbreak. We gave it a twist. If you’re in the middle of a breakup, no matter the stage, I want you to be able to relate. When your girls are behind you, you’re going to be alright.

Crimson Calamity release their witty fan-favorite track, “My Best Friends,” as the new single off their upcoming untitled project. The duo, comprised of Lauren Harding and Mallory Trunnell, has been writing and performing together since 2014. Inspired by the music of Fleetwood Mac and the Civil Wars, they merge Americana and Folk Rock effortlessly, creating stories that speak to the masses and individual hearts all at once.

Crimson Calamity celebrates the simpler times of lighting it up and drifting away from the world on new single, “My Best Friends.” Crafted at a writing retreat before the band’s inception, it’s been a fan favorite at live performances and finally found its recorded home on their new project, produced by Gena Johnson, the first woman nominated for an ACM for Audio Engineer of the Year.

Between the effortless cello progression, performed by Brian Allen, and their campfire-style vocals, the duo reminiscence about summer nights under the stars through witty wordplay and feel-good storytelling. Simple and down to earth, the acoustic atmosphere lends itself to the story, bringing to life a feeling of nostalgia and weightlessness we could all use a little more of after the tumultuous year we’ve had.

Pop singer-songwriter Susan Darvishi has released her second single of 2021, “We Could  Never Be.” This song follows her previous singles, “Fingers Crossed,” “New Salvation,” and “Polaroid,” and will be featured on her upcoming album, 14th and 4th, set to release in May 2021

“Analyzing failed relationships can be extremely helpful when trying to move forward. “We Could Never Be” is the letter that you choose to write in your head instead of sending in hopes of letting go of an old love.” – Susan Darvishi

“We Could Never Be” was written by Susan, produced by Kory Burrell, and mastered by Justin Perkins. Susan has always found songs about unrequited love fascinating, and this played a role when creating this single. This track is about analyzing a previous relationship from the outside looking in, and Susan found this method the most comforting and effective when trying to move on from a one-sided love. Susan hopes listeners who have gone through similar experiences can find comfort in this song and know that they can still regain control of the situation and move forward despite having once been shackled by those strong feelings.

Susan Darvishi is an Iranian-American singer-songwriter currently based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Susan has been writing music since the tender age of 10, and over the years, she has always strived to create music with meaningful lyrics that can connect with people. She officially broke onto the music scene in August 2019 with her first single, Taste Like Summer.She has since released numerous singles and her debut EP, Colored Heart. Her up-tempo pop lassos together everything from carefree electric guitar to Maggie Rogers-esque fanfare to drums-up Nintendo instrumentals. Susan’s fan base continues to grow, with her recent single, “Fingers Crossed,” topping nearly 70k streams on Spotify.

Photographer: Emily Ferris Photography
We all have a side of us that we soften and make more palatable for others. 
 
This song is a rebellion against that habit. My new single  “You Get Me” is about being loud, larger than life, and truthful to oneself. And being stupidly loved because of it all, not in spite of it. 
 
Stream You Get Meon your platform of choice. 

“You Get Me” is in celebration of us multidimensional women, and a tip of the hat to those that embrace us. Typically I write from experience, but this song was conjured by my idea of the perfect partner. I haven’t met this person yet, but they can use “You Get Me” as a blueprint.  

 The smallest acts of affection can have the biggest impact. It’s not about the big gestures, it’s about the care and attention it takes to know how someone takes their coffee every morning. 

 

Hope you enjoy my new single! 

 Thank you,

Vaness

(Credit: Natasha Tilly)

artist and songwriter Tessa Violet has debuted the official video for new single, “Games,” featuring L.A. indie rock outfit lovelytheband. The video is a playful homage to the Twilight saga and its famed baseball scene, featuring a cameo from Twilight’s own Peter Facinelli (Carlisle Cullen).

> Watch the video now here<<

“As someone who has built my career on the internet, I have always been super open about things in my personal life. This pregnancy was something I wanted to keep for myself. I’m not a fan of unwanted opinions, and pregnancy can be pretty stressful to begin with. The more you share, the more people feel entitled to give their two cents. That’s not something I wanted to subject myself to while pregnant. Now that my baby is here and healthy, I’m proud to share with my Romiti Gang that I am someone’s mom now. The choice to be private couldn’t have gone any better. I knew that I wanted to do a cool video announcement, but I didn’t want it to be a stereotypical gender reveal. I feel like stereotypical gender reveals don’t offer a child the grace to just be themselves. I wanted to announce my pregnancy in a way that wasn’t imposing masculinity or femininity onto my child. That’s why I didn’t include the stereotypical pink or blue in this music video. It’s okay for girls to like blue, and it’s okay for boys to like pink. We decided to have the little girl in the video wear a tuxedo, to further make the point that a child does not need to be confined by typical gender norms. I wish I had seen more of that message when I was growing up, so I’m putting it out into the world now.” – Toni Romiti

Rory Andrew (WYNNE) is a Grammy Nominated, platinum-selling songwriter, artist, producer and multi-instrumentalist. As a songwriter and producer, Rory’s songs have been released by major artists such as Machine Gun Kelly, ODESZA, Jaden Smith, Lennon Stella, August 08, Goldlink, Jackson Wang, Hobo Johnson, Two Door Cinema Club and more… Rory’s original compositions have appeared in numerous TV shows and films (HBO, Showtime, Hulu, Netflix etc) – including an original piece of music for Guillermo Del Toro’s critically acclaimed film, The Shape of Water, which garnered 7 Golden Globe nominations and 4 Oscar wins. In addition to his prolific career as a songwriter and producer, Rory is the mastermind behind his Grammy nominated artist project, WYNNE. WYNNE also wrote, co-produced and is featured on ODESZA’s single, “Line Of Sight” which debuted at #1 on Billboard Electronic Charts, #1 on the iTunes Electronic Charts, and was nominated for Best Dance Recording for the 2018 Grammy Awards. Alongside ODESZA, WYNNE has performed live at famed venues and festivals such as Coachella, sold out nights at Red Rocks Amphitheater, Staples Center, Greek Theater and NYC’s famed Barclays Center.

Indie pop duo Only Bricks is comprised of . Married in 2017, we gave birth to our debut EP Foundation in Santa Monica, California in early 2018 -not the grandchild our parents wanted, but hailed by Vents Magazine as the “perfect California indie pop record.” Our music feels like the rock, pop, and dance songs we cut our teeth on, with unapologetically melodic hooks and uplifting energy for days. 

 

Only Bricks has received praise for their feminist music since their 2019 single, “Alright!” was recognized by CelebMix as “a catchy carefree pop track . . .  perfect for summer” and a “female empowerment anthem.”  Their single “Fresh Outta Love” was hailed by the blog Cheers to the Vikings as “one of the best pop songs we have heard in a while!” The duo has also received acclaims from the likes of Music Connection, Wolf in a Suit, Atwood Magazine, All Access, among many others.

The Prototypes single ‘Reason’ with dance-feature hot-property LOWES has been added to BBC Radio 1 Playlist effectively from Friday 16 April – Stream ‘Reason’ Here. This week also sees the release of The Prototypes anthemic remix of James Vincent McMorrow and Rudimental drum and bass-inflected pop track  ‘Be Somebody’ Stream it here – the duo is planning two UK summer boat parties in July and a Vegas show in May.

Taken from their anthemic Drum & Bass crossover second album, ‘Ten Thousand Feet & Rising’ released by Kartel Music Group, the self-released independent summer anthem ‘Reason feat. LOWES’ is fast becoming an organic crossover hit – Stream ‘Ten Thousand Feet & Rising’ here. The album has had 110 plays across BBC Radio 1, BBC Dance and Radio 1Xtra, with support from Annie Mac, Greg James (TOTW), Matt & Mollie, Arielle Free, Dance Anthems and Rene LaVice. The single made it into the Shazam UK Top 50 chart.

Normally found tearing up festivals and venues across the world, while clubs have been closed, over the past year the pair have kept busy with a series of special livestream broadcasts, ‘Legacy’ to raise funds for MIND on World Mental Health Day in association with British Airways i360. Recorded live from the British Airways i360 tower in their hometown of Brighton, ‘Legacy’ saw the drum & bass duo stream a 90 minute live DJ set featuring all of their own material, VIPs, and exclusives from their 10 year career via their Facebook page. While in April 2020, The Prototypes performed a 24 hour Drum & Bass & Jungle DJ set in partnership with D&BTV and raised £14K for the NHS through ‘NHS Charities Together’.

Hong Kong shoegaze 5-piece Lucid Express are excited to announce their signing to Brooklyn, New York’s, Kanine Records. Today, in anticipation of the July 16th release of their self-titled debut album, the band share their gently defiant single “Wellwave” and its hazy music video.

The track serves as a fitting introduction to the group and their home. Through a flood of warm synth pads, and bright guitar lines, the band deliver a confident refusal to heed the pressure to conform in their local music scene. Vocalist/synth player Kim meditates throughout on the lyrics “We’ll wave today, for you, we’ll disobey for sure.” The track is accompanied by a video shot on Tai Mo Shan, the tallest mountain in Hong Kong, and features a performance from the band intercut with candid scenes from the surroundings. The entire visual is given a nostalgic filter by being replayed and refilmed through the screen of an analog tv.

The world as we know it today is a smaller place than ever before. Culturally more fluid than known in history and a flamboyant mix of nations as we travel to new places, Blackson takes an introspective look at where he fits in the world with his 13-track album ‘Outsider’, which is out now.

STREAM/DOWNLOAD/PURCHASE: BLACKSON – OUTSIDER

Italian born and raised, Ghanaian by heritage, artistically maturing in London and now residing in the northern city of Leeds, UK, Blackson is a rapper of notable distinction. Rich in cultural experience, multilingual and rooted to his own journey, he goes against the grain of the stereotypes of a grime MC, trapstar or afrobeats artist and instead takes influence from all lanes then mixes them with his own authenticity.

The concept of the project is contained in the single ‘Outsider’ where Blackson vulnerably explores the sense of not belonging to his birth country of Italy, or equally his homeland Ghana, but reaffirms and supports his Africanity with great pride. Rapping in Italian, he delves into his experience as a black boy who tries to establish himself in a different world, which sometimes finds it hard to accept diversity. The album cover equally depicts the face of a strong black Italian man with a cultural Ghanian face painting, that houses the Adinkra symbol of Siamese crocodiles, which means “union in diversity”.

Earlier in the album ‘La Fame’ hears Blackson empathize with Italian people who have experienced his own struggle and his own effort in trying to establish himself as a man and an artist. As you travel through the album Blackson effortlessly glides between language, tempo and style – all of which outline who he is. From letting off scattergun grime flows on opening track ‘B to the N’ to more melodic, afrobeats influence of ‘Non Perdo’ and the driller influence of ‘Leeds to Verona’. 

‘Outsider’ is the culmination of Blackson’s experience as an artist. Passionate about rap and Hip Hop from his youth, he began to participate in Hip Hop Jams and freestyle cyphers in Italy, where he discovered a talent for ‘top of the head’ freestyling. Coming second in the Valpolicella Sound Park freestyle contest, clashing with Dank MC, one of the greatest contenders of rap battles in Italy, he continued to build a solid status as one of Italy’s top freestyle rappers and battle MC’s, performing at notable events including ‘King of the Ring’ and ‘Tecniche Perfette’ before winning and positioning himself in the most prestigious contests including Torino’s ‘Ground Zero’, ‘Tecniche Perfette’ and the ‘Honiro freestyle Battle’. His status then opened the door for appearances on ‘MTV Spit’, conducted by ‘Marracash’ before releasing his debut solo EP ‘Halfa’. 

Following his relocation to the UK, Blackson started to build his international profile and single ‘Never Back Down’ was supported by prestigious station BBC Radio 1Xtra Takeover. Continuing to build his diverse and international music collection, he followed up with ‘Black Russian’ featuring Rome’s urban legend Amir Issa and most recently the track ‘DNA’ in collaboration with Francesco Grassi’s LOVE UNIVERSITY RECORDS, label of the Italian queen of Reggae Mama Marjas. 

With one out of four Americans now fully vaccinated and normalcy on the horizon, we can all start to focus on the things we enjoy the most. West Coast-based folk band Good Job Honey invites you to let your hair down and groove to their cheeky debut single, “Lazy Lovin.” The blues-infused folk track highlights the band’s unconventional humor while showcasing their musical versatility. With suggestive lyrics that make you blush, the song paints a picture of a well-deserved but listless roll in the hay. Good Job Honey unveils “Lazy Lovin” on all digital platforms on Today, April 20, 2021. The song is the first release from the trio’s long awaited debut album,Why You So Sticky, out July 30, 2021, 

Originating in Mendocino, CA, while enjoying a few special brownies, cannabis farmers April and Sean Robert alongside Sean’s brother, Austin, formed Good Job Honey in 2012. A year later, the trio expanded to include violinist Tommy Letchworth, drummer Colin Braley, trumpeter Tucker Heintz and bassist Gio Betus. After multiple unforeseen hardships, Good Job Honey is set to release their whimsical, eclectic debut album, Why You So Sticky, on July 30, 2021. 

Be sure to check out Good Job Honey and their new single, “Lazy Lovin,” out now on all streaming platforms. 

Miranda Joan is a Canadian neo-soul singer and songwriter born in Montréal and raised in Vancouver. Joan uses her multicultural upbringing from both French and English backgrounds as well as her reverence of music legends such as Stevie Wonder and Carole King and contemporary artists such as Erykah Badu, Anderson Paak and Emily King to craft a diverse and fresh sound in her music.

Joan recently returned to Vancouver after living in NYC where she performed on national tours and played sold-out shows at venues such as the Guggenheim, Joe’s Pub and The Town Hall and has been a headliner at well-known NYC venues such as Rockwood Music Hall, Rough Trade, and National Sawdust. In 2019 she performed at the Montreal Jazz Festival with the Orchestre National de Jazz, led by Sly5thAve in a tribute to Dr. Dre. Joan is a co-host and co-founder of Brooklyn’s Femme Jam (NYC’s first all-female led jam session) as well as a music mentor with the non-profit SAY: The Stuttering Association for the Young where she works with kids 8-18 who stutter.

Miranda Joan has shared the stage and has worked with high-profile artists such as Andy Grammar, Brandon Victor Dixon (Hamilton), Christopher Jackson (Hamilton), Surf Mesa, Lorde and Shawn Mendes.

Joan released her latest single ‘Home’ produced by Julian “J3P0” Pollack along with a music video filmed in Vancouver. The song is a reflection on life; fueled by the experience of leaving home and family for the first time. In the song Joanasks “Where will I go and what will I see? Where will I find home and where will it find me?” Questions that have new meaning in light of this past year; one that in many ways was defined by isolation, unpredictability, and the heartache of distance from our loved ones.

Aussie-born rocker Eden James has some sage relationship advice for the heartbroken.  The international award-winning artist announces the upcoming release of his newly remixed blues rock single, “Stranger,” a song about curing the break-up blues with a good old fashioned bang. The new mix by Grammy Award-winning engineer Brian Paturalski (Aerosmith, Def Leppard, Silverchair) emerges on all major digital platforms on April 30th, 2021. “Stranger” is from James’ fourth studio album, All the Good Blank are Taken, set to release on Dandy Ram Records on July 9th.

Eden James co-produced his forthcoming album All the Good Blank are Taken with producer Tim Leitner, famous for his work with the legendary Billy Joel and Tina Turner. The two producers recorded the album at Sticky Audio Labs in New York City with an all-star cast of musicians, including Paul Simon’s guitarist Larry Saltzman, David Bowie’s drummer Sterling Campbell and Bruce Springsteen’s keyboard/accordion player Charles Giordano.

Classic Rock magazine, who nominated two of James’s past songs for Track of the Week, has called James’s music “gorgeously sunny indie-come-Americana…a hidden gem” and “sunkissed Iggy-esque upbeat soul.”  Down the Front Podcast calls his songs “real rock ’n’ roll.”

Look out for the new single, “Stranger,” by Eden James, out April 30th, and his new album, All the Good Blank are Taken, out July 9th.

Newspoke have released their double-single “Sleep Well” and “Friend”. The tracks precede the release of their second album, Knocking on the Door of Daylight out on 4/30/21.

 The video exclusively premiered on BTR Today who said, “Melodic and emotional, ‘Sleep Well’ portrays a hurt heart, trying to figure it all out. The vocals are soothing and sing about loss while the instrumentation is aggressive and robust.” They continue about the second single, “‘Friend’ transitions into a slower melody that feels softer and more hopeful. But it eventually builds up to feel upbeat and celebratory. The video shows this transition through a trip in the sky across the big city—from one heart to another.”

The music video is a cinematic masterpiece, shot via drone, and soaring through New York City creating a story, hundreds of feet up in the air. Newspoke lead singer M says, “We produced this video over a 3 year time period; setting up drone operations, locations, crew and editing took forever to get it right.  The story was always the same: a guy and girl splitting up and then the girl finding love across town. But when we sequenced the album, it made a lot of sense to make it a double song video of “Sleep Well” and “Friend” because they’re back-to-back on the album and sonically and thematically flow into each other.  “Sleep Well” is about two people going separate ways and finding new partners, then “Friend” is about finding love through a long journey.  The “Friend” part of the video could be seen as an entirely different perspective or part of the same story, it’s up to the viewer.”

 “Sleep Well” and “Friend” follow the release of “Clean”, which came out in March 2021, and they uphold familiar tones of acoustic guitars and catchy melodies while the lyrics tell candid stories of love, friendships, and the ups and downs that can come with them. Each of the songs is an intimate look into the mind of Newspoke’s lead singer and songwriter M and touches on personal experiences that he’s gone through over the past few years.

 “Sleep Well” immediately catches listeners with driving drums, that continue throughout. It’s an emotionally charged song that takes elements of folk while still maintaining a modern sound. Speaking about “Sleep Well” vocalist M says, “It’s a mixture of stories and emotions: former lovers on opposite ends of the city, having to deal with former lovers finding new love, and then finding new love on your own. It can be a mixture of sadness, excitement, and happiness, all at the same time or in waves. All in all, it’s a gesture of positive wishes sent out to the opposing party.”

Elephants and Stars, the Toronto and Hamilton-area trio-cum-quintet are back again with more songs, more melodies and more members!

Following the release of 2020’s Recovery EP, recorded and mixed by Lowest of the Low frontman Ron Hawkins, no one could have predicted what happened next. Recovery was released just as the world plunged into what would become the worst pandemic in over 100 years and essentially shut the music business down for the next year.

Luckily for Elephants and Stars, just prior to this they entered the studio with heavyweight Canadian musician and producer Ian Blurton (Lowest of the Low, The Weakerthans) and recorded 6 new tracks.

“Working with Ian was something We’d always wanted to do, dating back to earlier bands we were in,” says guitarist Manfred Sittmann. “I knew I was always a fan of his production so I knew sonically it was going to make us sound as good as we possibly could. What surprised even me was what a great ear for pop music he has. Most of my favourite moments on the record came out of Ian’s suggestions. Plus it was a thrill to work with someone we’d admired for so long”

Photo Credit: Alicia Carrick

It was exactly a year ago today that Toronto musician and guitar builder Alex Beraldo released his new album Freaktone Sessions to exactly zero fanfare, since it was right at the beginning of the COVID pandemic. This isn’t a story that is unique to Alex, in fact, it’s a story that many musicians releasing music last year have. But what is unique, is that Alex decided to shine some light on his overlooked album by re-releasing the single ‘Southern Heat’, along with a new live video filmed in his luthier workshop, on the anniversary of the album’s release.

‘Southern Heat’ is one of those songs that takes you by surprise. It seems like a sweet, romantic love song at first, but then it straight up hits you with an emotional punch that sits with you long after the song has ended. 

“This song just kind of wrote itself one night,” says Alex. “At first it sounds like a nice love song about a girl, but I actually think the lyrics are quite selfish and petty in nature. I came by it honestly though, and I think that’s what makes it good.”

Alex Beraldo been making music since 2006 and describes his sound as “a uniquely weird take on folk, blues, rock n roll and country music. The music is catchy yet different, throwback but contemporary. Think John Prine trying to be Bob Dylan, but he hung out with Bradley Nowell. And he grew up on blues, punk rock and underground rap. In the 90s.” 

Alex has fronted several bands and been a solo act, touring Canada multiple times from coast to coast. He’s independently recorded and released ten albums as the frontman of bands The Breaks and The People, including five solo efforts.  

‘Southern Heat’ is available now on Spotify, Apple Music/iTunes, and other digital retailers and streaming services worldwide. For more info, please visit alexberaldo.com

Irish post-punk duo Twin Diver were born out of necessity. The pair packed up for London last year to work on new material and play the circuit. Unfortunately, their plans were cut short when the world closed down within a matter of weeks. During this period, the pair found themselves temporarily stranded with nothing but a bass guitar and a midi controller. From this desolate environment came a new sound and a new beginning for Twin Diver.

New single ‘Sweet Sick’ is the epitome of cool, overflowing with Joy Division-esque production and conjuring up images of basement dancefloors in better times. In the artists’ own words, the track takes a “comically negative” approach to matters of employment, purpose, and social standing –

“Sweet Sick is about boredom and existential dread. A lot of my friends who are also in their early 20s have talked about not knowing what they’re “supposed” to be doing with their lives. Trying to plan your life is a losing game at the best of times, but given the pandemic I think that feeling was exacerbated for many people, including us.”

I am so happy to share my album, Panorama, with the world, which feels like a package of twenty-four years’ worth of my heart, soul, and ideas.

 My favourite song from the record, Masquerade,” was written in a unique way in collaboration with two-time Polaris Prize listed Louise Burns (Haley Blais) and JUNO-Award winning Kevvy (Carly Rae Jepsen, Fake Shark).

 Unlike other tracks on the album, I’d had the chorus idea sitting on my phone for months but couldn’t figure out what the song needed. As soon as we dove into writing, my collaborators elevated that initial vision and we built something special.

The official Masquerade visuals premiere this Friday April 23 @ 8pm EST on YouTube.

 Listen to Panorama in full on your preferred platform.

https://smarturl.it/MSPanorama

 🌾🌸🔑

I’m somewhat obsessed with little moments that end up shaking our belief systems, and I had a particular experience when I was about twelve that stands out for me—it was a conversation about the “real world” that instantly made me feel older and realize that adults actually didn’t have it all together.

 Masquerade captures so much of my experience of getting older: you reflect on your past low points and things you would’ve done differently, but you also recalibrate and let those experiences inform you as you grow and move forward.

It’s been an exhilarating and terrifying process readying myself to drift Panorama out to sea for whoever happens to float by. I hope that this song, and the whole album, make you feel something.   -Michaela Slinger

Faiyaz and the Wasted Chances are a POC fronted Toronto punk band that have been described as a raw garage pop band with virtuosic protopunk influences, cheekily modded for today’s listeners. Their sound falls somewhere between Warhol pre-punk and the Toronto DIY indie that they flowered in. The band’s raucous, rough-around-the-edges appeal is concisely painted.

Raised in the downtown core, the band cut their teeth as young underaged punks playing the original Silver Dollar Room, The Horseshoe Tavern, Lee’s Palace, and any other willing hole-in-the-wall in Canada. Through relentless mini tours and studio EPs in famed studios 6 Nassau, Candle Recording, and Lootbag Studios, the band gained the cult following that have allowed them to play alongside larger more reputable acts. They are currently on Lootbag Records alongside many great artists.

Claire Chase, described by The New York Times as “the most important flutist of our time,” has released her most ambitious recording project to date: four full-length albums of the complete Density 2036 cycles from 2013-2018. Density 2036 is a 24-year project begun by Claire Chase in 2013 to commission an entirely new body of repertory for solo flute each year until the 100th Anniversary of Edgard Varèse’s groundbreaking 1936 flute solo, Density 21.5. Each year until 2036, Claire will commission and premiere a new program of flute music. These albums are the first fruit of these commissions, realized in the first three years of the project, featuring 17 works by 15 composers written for all members of Claire’s flute family, from piccolo to “Big Bertha” (her contrabass flute), as well as electronics, voice, and a handful of other instruments.

 Tyshawn Sorey performed percussion on his contribution and Suzanne Farrin played Ondes Martenot on hers; Roomful of Teeth collaborate with Chase on one piece, and sound designer Levy Lorenzo handles the electronics throughout. Participants come from a wide range of creative contemporary music circles; they include Richard Beaudoin, Nathan Davis, Jason Eckardt, Dai Fujikura, Vijay Iyer, Felipe Lara, Mario Diaz de Leon, George Lewis, Pauline Oliveros, Pauchi Sasaki, Francesca Verunelli, and Du Yun. Full album credits can be found at density2036.org.

The exquisitely detailed recordings were made at the Meyer Sound Laboratories in Berkeley and produced by Matias Tarnopolsky over the course of four years, with no overdubbing or corrections, presenting Chase’s incredible musicality in all its glory. The physical recordings on CD are out now via Corbett vs Dempsey, an art gallery and record company based in Chicago and founded by music writer and producer John Corbett and Jim Dempsey. The recordings are also available digitally on Bandcamp

 Of the project, Claire Chase shares: “Density 2036 is a collective undertaking at its core, and this compilation of world premiere recordings from the first five years of the project is about so much more than a little tube of metal. It’s about an intergenerational, intersectional, multi-genre group of artists coming together to imagine a musical future in community. It’s also about creating a new ecosystem for the way that new music is created, nourished and shared, focusing well beyond a premiere. With DensitySeeds and DensityRoots, I hope that this living, breathing archive of work in all its forms will foster new forms of collaboration and conviviality within the next generations of musicians and listeners.

 Claire Chase is a flutist, collaborative artist, educator and advocate for new and experimental music. She was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship in 2012, and in 2017 was awarded the Avery Fisher Prize from Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. Chase is Professor of the Practice of Music at Harvard University. She has given the world hundreds of new works by a new generation of composers, and she has championed new music internationally by forming organizations, cultivating intersectional alliances, founding commissioning initiatives and supporting community and education programs that reach new audiences. She lives in Brooklyn.

(photo credit: Sam Dameshek)

LA-based indie-pop artist Grady releases the official video for “All In”—an anthem for new beginnings and newfound love ahead of the ultimate summer—out now via TMWRK Records

“All In” is an instant mood booster and the visual component directed by Sam Dameshek (Halsey, Miley Cyrus, Sydney Sweeney) amplifies its playful energy. Picking fun at dating app corporations and what ‘The Love Umbrella’ strategy meetings might look like, the video takes you inside the imagined Tinder offices for 5 minutes of silly shenanigans. On the making of the video, Grady say, “My favorite music videos are always one that are cinematic, that tell a story even beyond just the song. That’s what I wanted this music video to be—a platform to tell other stories within the video and for it to be its own little universe. Maybe we’ll spin off one of the skits in there into a tv show one day, who knows.”

100% written and produced by Grady, “All In” is fully loaded with exhilaration only a new romance can bring. The song (mixed and mastered by Diego Ferrera) is a refreshing reminder to listen to your heart over the ridiculous unwritten laws of dating. “You hear all the time, ‘Don’t double text, don’t simp, don’t be thirsty,” Grady explains. “‘All In’ is the opposite of all those new rules, it’s just – “fuck it, I like you, I’m all in. It’s about that moment you know in your heart that you want to take a relationship with someone to the next level.”

Grady is unmistakably himself. Influenced by Beck at an early age, he was drawn to writing music out of his cerebral consciousness. “Honestly all the best songs I’ve written, I kind of just vomited out. No one knows what’s going to hit, so make what feels good to you, right for you, and find people you trust to elevate it,” he admits, “I’m just excited to grow and learn more about myself and the world. I want to give good energy to people and I always feel so much gratitude that the universe gave me this.” 

Nearly a year in the making, Vancouver rapper Neon Empty’s (aka Bryce Lokken) new single ‘Red Lives Don’t’  is an expression of frustration and disgust with white Canada’s hypocrisy about racial inequality during the summer 2020 – the summer of Black Lives Matter.

On ‘Red Lives Don’t’ the Métis-raised-white rapper explores the disconnect between Canada’s very public responses to events in the US, while ignoring very similar events on its own soil. His subtle use of possessive and outsider language shines a light on his own difficulties and hypocrisy as he navigates racial inequality from a place of perceived privilege.

Neon Empty uses shocking language on ‘Red Lives Don’t’ to get people’s attention in order to highlight a very important problem that we have in Canada – anti-Indigenous racism. He’s uses it to be heard in the same way that Black Lives Matter activists use “Defund The Police”. The same way that Wetʼsuwetʼen land defenders set up rail blockades across Canada in 2020 to shine a national spotlight on the construction of the Coastal GasLink Pipeline on Wetʼsuwetʼen First Nation territory in British Columbia. Sometimes it takes more than pointing out the problem, in order to get people’s attention. 

Bryce explains: “In the summer of 2020, it seemed like nearly all Canadians became really excited about ending racism in Canada as a result of George Floyd’s murder and the BLM movement. I was one of them – someone who had been asleep at the wheel of white-looking privilege. 

Mandopop phenomenon JJ Lin has united with multiplatinum British songstress Anne-Marie for a brand new single entitled “Bedroom”—available here via Warner Records. The song stands out as a highlight and hidden track of JJ’s debut English vocal album, Like You Do, available now.

On the track, stark piano cuts through minimal production, allowing these two vocal dynamos to shine in an intimate call-and-response. Anne-Marie sets the scene as she confesses, “You’re crying in your bedroom, because I’ve gone and left you…don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone.  As the hook rings out, JJ Lin responds with emotionally charged verse, “You used to be the strongest of us two…now look at you sitting there. It reflects an honest dialogue during a relationship at an impasse.

JJ Lin has amassed north of 100 billion streams worldwide.  Anne-Marie has notched a series of multiplatinum singles as well as gathering over 12 billion streams worldwide. This sizzling collaboration bridges genres and cultures as JJ recorded in Taipei and Anne-Marie worked out of London.

 Of the song, JJ commented, “I’ve been very impressed by AnneMarie’s songwriting talent and stage presence, and I think she has the most angelic voice. I am truly honored to be working with her on such a beautiful song.”

Anne-Marie added, “I’m a huge fan of JJ Lin’s and I’m so excited this has come together! I love ‘Bedroom. it’s such a special song to me, and he has made it sound even more beautiful!”

Blazing as one of the year’s brightest breakthrough artists, ace Atlanta singer/songwriter Teddy Swims ignites a new single and music video entitled “Bed On Fire” out today via Warner Records. Get it HERE and watch the video HERE.

Teddy continues to shape and sharpen his signature sound, fusing intense soul, stoned R&B, and magnetic pop. In between robust piano chords and sparse production, his vocals take flight on the incendiary hook, “If you’re gonna leave, leave me. Don’t say goodbye. Just set the bed on fire…let it burn.” The music video brings these words to life. Starring Leila George [TNT’s Animal Kingdom], the clip intercuts warm nostalgic vignettes with a cinematic narrative. As memories crumble, Leila quite literally sets a bed on fire in a trailer home as Teddy’s voice burns as brightly as the embers.

Teddy appeared on “A Little Later With Lilly Singh” earlier this week to promote the release of “Bed On Fire,” watch HERE. Teddy will perform for the first time ever on Late Night TV next Friday, April 30th on “The Late Show With Stephen Colbert.”

Regarding the song, Teddy commented, “Have you ever been so deeply in love with someone that you know they have the total power over you? Yet still you make a decision every day to trust them with that power because that’s what we do in love. ‘Bed On Fire’ comes from a place of genuine fear of loving someone so much that if they ever got up and decided to leave you at any moment they could crush your whole world. Fear lives in love.”

17-year-old budding star Melvoni releases two new songs, “Get Money,” a star-studded posse cut featuring Tyla Yaweh and DDG and the other, “Forgot About The Streets,” with Badda TD & Brillo is to be featured on the soundtrack to the critically-acclaimed Epix TV series Godfather of Harlem, starring Forest Whitaker and Nigel Thatch.

[Listen to “Get Money” by Melvoni featuring Tyla Yaweh and DDG HERE]

[Get “Forgot About The Streets” by Melvoni featuring Badda TD & Brillo HERE]

“Get Money” is a triumphant anthem anchored by an almost Spartan-like “get money” chant throughout its chorus, typical of Melvoni’s hook work. Since his momentum began to build in 2020 with his #MelvoniApprovedFridays series, which included standout releases like “Stackhouse” and “Chrome,” the teen phenom’s reputation for irresistibly boisterous choruses has preceded him, and “Get Money” is no different.

Epic labelmates DDG (“Moonwalking in Calabasas”) and Tyla Yaweh (“Tommy Lee”), budding stars in their own right, join forces with Melvoni to create a hotbed of talent sure to be heard from for quite some time. The high-octane result will surely be an aux cord go-to as the world begins to reopen.

Despite his youth, Melvoni isn’t concerned with “boxing” himself in. In addition to his forthcoming EP, by way of “Forgot About The Streets,” he is part of the musical support for Season 2 of Godfather of Harlem, the marquee television show chronicling the transformation of New York City during the crime boss era. Appearing beside Melvoni on the soundtrack thus far are the likes of Adé, Swizz Beatz and the late DMX.

Melvoni’s multifaceted offerings are just a glimpse of the full spectrum of artistry he’d like to unleash on fans and critics alike in 2021 and beyond. As restrictions ease, he’ll be interacting with fans in ways he hasn’t yet been able to. The sky’s the limit, and he knows it.

Raised in Kansas around her parents’ love of bluegrass and folk, Skofee melds the candid lyrics and cultured harmonies of those time-honored genres to utterly here-and-now alt-pop. Her immediately recognizable, finely-grained timbre – a voice at once you-and-me intimate and headily escapist – magnetizes effervescent material and sometimes uncomfortably frank messages. “I’m attracted to songs that admit fault and work through emotions in real time rather than presenting the conclusion wrapped up with a bow,” mulled Skofee (pronounced “Skoh-fee”). “It’s more interesting to be in the point of tension as a listener; the in-between.” Skofee attended high school in Colorado, where she performed in choirs and musical theater. After graduating from the University of Southern California, she decided to remain in Los Angeles, immersed in an ultra-creative household of musical peers (including Polished co-producer Jamison Baken).

Total Brutal is the new indie pop solo project from Los Angeles based singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Emily Moore. Moore is known as a professional touring musician, having shared the stage with the likes of Grammy award-winning artists including Taylor Swift, FUN, Dua Lipa, X Ambassadors and many more. With the goal of spreading positivity and self-empowerment, Total Brutal has an ethos of standing up for yourself in order to be heard and seen, facing fears head on and being comfortable in your own skin. 

Inspired by strong female artists, Total Brutal is determined to help other young women make their worth known and their voices heard. She shares, “It took me a really long time to understand that I am allowed to speak up, have opinions and speak directly. I’m starting to realize that I can be myself and be liked and professional all the same. I want to help foster that adventurous spirit and confidence in young women!”

The Trusted are Southend-on-Sea natives Dave Batchelor, Dale Holt-Mead, Fin Cunningham and Tom Cunningham. Initially starting out in secondary school, the band bonded over their mutual appreciation of a strong melody and atmospheric, edgy pop. Sharing an enthusiasm for 21st century Brit-rock led by the likes of Catfish and the Bottlemen and The 1975, as well as classic late ‘70s new-wave icons such as The Clash and Elvis Costello, The Trusted thrive off their unique fusion of post-punk energy and storytelling.

Vibrant and energetic, their latest single “Rebel Song” is the people’s anthem of 2021. Written during lockdown with the band separated and full of frustration from the world, political strain, effects of lockdown and internal battles, The Trusted spawned their latest tune. After witnessing people coming together to fight for social justice and standing up for the good of the world, they found themselves truly inspired and uplifted. Lyrically they aimed to write a song that celebrates the act of defiance. Reminiscent of Sam Fender’s “Hypersonic Missiles,” this is politically infused indie-rock at it’s best. However despite its political notions, the band share, “I wouldn’t say ‘Rebel Song’ is an outright political track. It kind of leans more on the emotional/psychological side of rebelling”. Known for covering themes of human emotion and their perceptions of the world, “Rebel Song” follows suit. 

The track is electrifying with bolts of energy and uplifting sensations. Infused with electronic pockets and an atmospheric, building bass that subtly gives off a powerful energy, the song is joined in harmony with spritely riffs and nimble, mighty drums. The guitars create a constant fabrication of excitement and euphoria; exploding in motivation and passion. The lyrics, “all I got is my rebel song and that’s alright with me,” reinforces a little belief and faith will carry you through. “Rebel Song” has melodies brimming in fear, anger, excitement, hope and peace – embodying everything going on around them both in their minds and environments.

The band have garnered hundreds of thousands of plays on Spotify alone, along with support from numerous BBC stations. Known for their mind-blowing live sets, the band have performed at prestigious venues across the UK, as well as two successful tours of Northern Italy, where they now have a huge following.

Scott McKeon has given a lifetime of dedication to his craft as a guitarist. Initially inspired by his dad’s love of blues, soul and rock music, he took up the guitar at the age of four and has developed a reputation as one of the UK’s most in-demand guitarists, both in the studio and performing live. Raised on a diet of Buddy Holly, Eddie Cochran and Chuck Berry, Scott was exposed to his parent’s vast record collection, allowing his musical palette to mature beyond his years. By the time he was eight, Scott was playing a full-size Strat and was the face of a Fender ad campaign to inspire a new young generation of guitarists. At just 13 years old, Scott was fronting his own blues band, playing most weekends in pubs and clubs around the south coast of England.

Fast forward and Scott is now unveiling his third album, New Morning. An earthy, raw, guitar-lead record, showcasing Scott’s range and ability as a guitarist, the album was recorded live in the studio at RAK in London, capturing the energy and spontaneity of the sessions. New Morning was produced by Paul Stacey (Black Crowes/Oasis) and features Jeremy Stacey (Sheryl Crow/Tal Wilkenfield) on drums, Rocco Palladino (Tom Misch/ D’Angelo) on bass and Gavin Conder (Rufus Black/The Kondoors) as vocalist on several tracks. Emitting an expression of freedom, most of the songs were captured in the first take, all with the mindset to just jam, let the music flow and not think about it too much. Scott confides, “New Morning to me is a new start, a new journey about being real and true to yourself. Playing from the heart, not your head. One thing I’ve learnt about playing with some amazing performers over the years, is just being able to get to that place when you play where you’re not thinking and letting it come out.” New Morning is a collection of tracks which dance between crashing drums and face-melting guitar riffs, to more mellow, bluesy jazz-tinged melodies. Some more melancholy than others, the album is rich in authenticity, with an organic flow of sounds and styles. 

The first single “Third Eye Witness” has already garnered support from Spotify’s ‘Modern Blues Rock’ playlist. Scott shares, “The original idea was quite influenced by Sly Stone and had a funky thing about it, but when we came to record it with Gavin Conder’s (vocalist) vocals, it ended up having a sort of indie/alternative feel to it, almost something like Kurt Vile/War On Drugs.”

Currently performing in Sir Tom Jones’ band, Scott has also had the pleasure of playing with the likes of Eric Clapton, James Arthur, Emeli Sande, Lana Del Ray, Derek Trucks, Gary Clark Jr, Van Morrison, Andreya Triana, Joe Bonamassa, Ed Sheeran, Rebecca Ferguson and many, many more. Scott also has a signature fuzz pedal and signature pickups, modelled on his ’62 Strat. New Morning is currently available worldwide.

You already know Flo Gallop. You’ve already heard her voice, it’s a pitch-perfect, beautiful, arm-around-the-shoulders version of the one in your head. Flo is the voice we all need, She’s the beat behind our breakdowns and the word-perfect poetry of our bounce-back pick-ups. South-east London born and bred, Flo was raised around music, her dad made songwriting feel like breathing. Without it she would choke. So, she sat, scribbling words, diarising an everyday life through the musicality and soul of a natural artist that would eventually emerge, fully formed, as a friend in your ears.

Flo doesn’t want to change the world, just get your attention. She lives to perform, yet she feels, writes and lives like an antidote to this world of filtered fakery and ‘pick me!’ poses. Honesty is the only policy here, even when it hurts. 

“Chasing After You” is an emotionally charged single written after a breakup about a boy Flo was utterly entranced by. This single is raw and heartfelt with lyrics that are relatable and as honest as they come. The young artist believes in being as authentic as possible and vulnerably relayed that through this tune. Flo explains, “The words in it are just exactly how I felt and I’m so glad we wrote it when we did because there’s so much emotion in it.”

“Chasing After You” is laced in visual, compelling lyrics. The production on this track is a combination of elements from her previous singles “21” and “Can’t Be Friends,” giving us a luscious lead into this single. With pulsing bass lines, exotic trumpet pumps and rhythmic acoustic guitars, the song has pockets of interesting production moments. From subtle electric grit to glassy shakers which bathe the song in a complex and affecting soundscape, the track oozes with sass. “Times change but people never do, I don’t want to spend my life chasing after you,” Flo sings about the reality of love and life.

All of Flo’s music is food for the heart and words for the wise. This is a writer of depth, already a collaborator with established giants Tom Fuller and Will Thomson but, rather than stand on their shoulders, she has hands on the wheel. 

Being a young woman in your 20s isn’t always easy today, but Flo only sees ‘good and great’ in her life and her work, and you will too. So, if you’re looking for Bad then head for Neverland, but if you want songs to fly, cry and die for then don’t just run with the herd- go with the Flo.

 Buzzing Orlando rapper MOE joins forces with GRAMMY® Award-winning legendary producer Zaytoven for a collaborative project entitled MOETOVEN today.  

Get it HERE via Epic Records.

The single “Walkin On Water” combines airy piano, church organ, and hard-hitting flows before a hypnotic hook, “Drippin like I’m walkin on water. Earlier this week, they dropped “Can’t Help It” [feat.Hotboii], illuminating their instant and inimitable synergy. On the track, MOE cuts through Zaytoven’s piano-laden 808s with raw and razor-sharp bars before he announces, “I can’t help that I’m this way. Just blame where I’m from. Meanwhile, MOETOVEN opens with the hypnotic and hard-hitting “Cost.” The ominous production underscores intense vocal delivery as MOE reminds, “You know it cost to live like this. Then, there’s “Fuckin Up A Check” [feat. Young Scooter]. This tight and tough trap banger pops off with a magnetic chant. “Never Broke Again” [feat. Mula McGrady] flaunts and flexes as a motivational anthem, while the closer “Life Chose Me” serves as one final introspective confession from MOE buoyed by elite beat-craft from one of the best in the game.

Soaring off the back of the success of his soul tingling single “Glitter Ain’t Gold” ft Jaz Karis, London hailed singer songwriter Jay Lewn reveals his latest instalment “Boyfriend Part 2”. Following on from the track “Boyfriend” appearing on his debut project “FORM 01”, “Boyfriend Part 2” showcases Jay’s penchant for crafting deftly executed harmonies
amongst soul dripping soundscapes. Cushioned by tipsy guitar licks and nostalgic lofi frequencies, the track displays a profound level of emotional openness alongside a delicately tasteful R&B flare. Speaking on the track, Jay said: “Boyfriend Part 2 continues along the theme of unrequited love, and tackles more personal topics of depression and heartbreak. It’s a much more paired back record compared to the others on LOVERBOY and wears its heart on its sleeve.”

Hanne Mjøen is a Norwegian alt/pop artist who creates music that makes you want to dance, with lyrics that make you want to cry. Her intoxicating sound is coated in a dark, raw edge, providing a comforting reminder that it’s ok to be flawed, while her lyrics pull the trigger for an outlet of pent-up emotions.  

 Navigating love and life, her upcoming EP Emotional Fever is an emporium of talent. Written between Stockholm and London, Mjøen brings together the best of dance-worthy pop melodies, and moments of heartache, to tell her chapters of journeying into adult life. With lyrics like, “I don’t mind being broken, if it takes me to heaven,” the songwriter gives us a glimpse into how she turns her pain into power. The overall feel of the five-track EP is rich in electro, dream-pop melodies with flares of throbbing synths and a rich mix of dynamics that take you on a rollercoaster of sound and emotion. Emotional Fever is an outlet for Mjøen’s feelings and the realisation that adulthood isn’t how it seems through rose-tinted glasses. She shares, “The theme of my new music is stepping into the grown-up world, with high expectations and thinking it would change me, but realizing it’s not like a movie.” 

 Leading single “Hell With You” narrates what it feels like to fall out of love but not wanting to leave for the fear of never falling in love again. She spills, “You want to leave knowing this isn’t “it” for you, but you’re scared of being alone, and not ready to give it up.” The track entails dreamy, electro-pop, floating synths that circulate your head space, along with icy, silky vocals which elicits itself from an army of pulsing, heavy synths that dance with the beat. The sound truly has a power that contrasts the delicacy in her voice.  

Mjøen’s 2018 release “Sounds Good To Me” has garnered over 14 million streams to date, receiving airplay from Annie Mac and BBC Radio 1. Connecting with listeners across the globe through her honest songwriting and vibrant pop anthems, Hanne Mjøen is a force to be reckoned with.

Artist/Producer Professor Paws first hit our radar in 2019 when he teamed up with Big Chess on the GRM Daily premiered ‘Ride or Die’. Since that first drop his artist profile has continued to make major gains with releases including the emotive story of inner-city life and turmoil on ‘Rum Pa Pa Pum’featuring Yung Saber, his second GRM Daily drop, which has since gained almost half a million views. Notably earning stripes early in his career, Professor Paws has spent the last year tying up some major moves behind the scenes and is now set to release Southside Girl, his first offering of fresh new music for 2021.

STREAM/PURCHASE: PROFESSOR PAWS – SOUTHSIDE GIRL 

Staying in a melodic and stirring lane, Professor Paws draws on R&B influence for his soulful, party hook whilst his snappy, playful rap flows lace the verses of this all too familiar tale. Capturing the excitement and flirtations of a relationship in its early stages, Professor Paws details the songs’ inspiration, “This song is about ‘getting to know’ someone new and asking them to stay over your side of the city for the night so they can be introduced to the area. The song was inspired by a real-life love interest who was from a different upbringing and side of town to me.”.

Of Ghanian and European heritage, Professor Paws is influenced by his roots and is keen to ensure that diversity always shines through in his music. Being exposed to such a wide range of sounds and styles in a rapidly developing musical climate, has helped shape his sound to one that moves fluidly between varying genres, tones and styles. His endless hours in the studio behind the desk as a producer has seen him work alongside major name rappers, including Giggs, Fekky, Cash and Joe Grind, and has undoubtedly helped to navigate his own personal artistry as he has cherrypicked wisdom from the best and been able to apply it to his own sound as an artist. 

On course to release his debut project later this year, Southside Girl is a reminder of the experimental sweet spot that Professor Paws is becoming synonymous with hitting. 

Sensationally marking the release of his debut mixtape ‘No Smoke Without Fire’Poundz collaborates with Backroad Gee for lead single ‘Chocolate Darling’.


WATCH: POUNDZ – CHOCOLATE DARLING
 

As two of the British Black Music scene’s flag flyers, Poundz and Backroad Gee are at the forefront of visionary MC styles with each applying unmatched authenticity to their music. Coming together for ‘Chocolate Darling’ with spitfire bars and high-octane vibes, it is the combination of their skill alongside their unmistakable and unpredictable delivery styles that makes this record a mixtape highlight.
 

STREAM/PURCHASE: POUNDZ – NO SMOKE WITHOUT FIRE

 

Produced by Ill Blu (Headie One, MoStack, IAMDDB) with an energetic video shot by MOBO Award winning director Kevin Hudson (NSG, D-Block Europe, Ivorian Doll), the chemistry between the pair on their first collaboration is electric as they perform to camera amidst an array of strong dark-skinned female models in a series of indulgent chocolate themed scenes.

Leading the 7-track mixtape, Chocolate Darling is the 4th video to of been released from the tracklist, which also houses the remix of Poundz’ silver selling, official top 40 record ‘Opp Thot’, featuring Ambush, Snap Capone and Yxng Bane, monster 2020 single ‘Tik Tok’ and the recently released  ‘Get Rich N Get Paid’.

Ambushing the UK scene, Poundz made his major breakthrough in 2020, seeing him tipped on the ‘Ones To Watch’ polls via the likes of NME and CLASH Magazine. Whilst delivering a string of solo hits including ‘Smooth Criminal’ and ‘Tik Tok’,  he has also affirmed his position with features on S1mba’s ‘Rover Remix‘Freaky’ alongside Swarmz and Dappy , Miss LaFamilia’s ‘Dumb Flex’ Remix and Disturbing London’s monster single ‘Drip’, featuring Ivorian Doll and fellow label alumni Tinie and Yxng Bane. 

Presenting an impressive debut that features dexterous flows, determined energy and unpredictability, ‘No Smoke Without Fire’ marks a defining moment in the career of Poundz.

photo by Lux Lilianna Frisina

Sarah Kinsley shares the lightheaded euphoric new single “Over + Under” along with the announcement of her upcoming EP. Sarah performs all synths, beats, guitars and vocals on “Over + Under” (as she did on “Karma”). It’s another sublimely joyous, weightless tune that could soundtrack a post disco comedown as it could the crashing of waves on a scorched day.

“As I wrote ‘Over + Under’, I found myself grappling with notions of loneliness. Isolation. Of returning to a place or a state of being I felt disconnected from and attempting to understand what lay at the centre of it: why did certain things happen? How had time changed me? And how does one move once stuck? At the end of change and chaos there is that sweet, chilling kind of stillness. An exhale of months of isolation and solitude. Of allowing myself to travel with the over and under. There was a kind of stillness in knowing that change would be certain again, that the tide would rise again, that I would shed new skin. But it was the kind of stillness that I was okay with. One I knew I would meet again.”

Cody Lovaas is a Californian singer-songwriter and guitarist who grounds his simple and confessional lyrics in soulful vocals, melodic acoustic performances, and smooth pop production. Cody’s latest release, “Rocket”, is the second in a succession of songs that will be released on a monthly basis through the rest of 2021; he previously released “Flowers on the Freeway” last March. Written during quarantine, Cody’s new music hosts themes that are personal and incredibly relatable. A singer-songwriter at heart, Cody is able to blend his conversational lyricism with invigorating drum and bass-driven beats, seamlessly. These next songs from Cody Lovaas are a collection of emotions arranged in an exhibition meant to be, at their core, an experience.

“‘Rocket’ is about feeling in jeopardy within a relationship and surrendering your caution. Noticing your vulnerability, but disregarding it for the joy of now. I’d way rather be optimistic and wrong, than pessimistic and right.” – Cody Lovaas

SLUGS is a four-piece alt rock outfit out of Los Angeles comprised of singer/songwriter/guitarist Marissa Longstreet, Sarsten Noice (bass/vocals), Josh Beavers (lead guitar) and Dash Hutton (drums). Their influences range from Linda Perhacs with their melodic harmonies and tenderness to Thee Oh Sees with their high energy, spitfire performances. 

SLUGS latest tune “I Could Do Better” got it’s title after enduring a flight from a poor choice of airline, when the idea of I could do better humorously arose. Later working with a friend the song was written and developed at a time when exploring the journey of sobriety, where the lyrics took a deeper dive into the meaning. The song narrates wanting to find a way back to the blissful naivety of being a child, as well as the wonderful and complicated revelations and the highs and lows during the process of grounding. Longstreet shares, “I compared my carefree attitude as a child, finger painting an image of nothing, to the “I don’t care” attitude of my 20’s. I wrote this song as if it were an intervention on myself, and I was playing both sides. I wanted to find my way back to carefree innocence coming from a place of sinister repetition and complacency.”

“I Could Do Better” emits a reflective and experimental sonic appeal through it’s trippy, psychedelic feel. Somewhat woozy and chill, the song has subtle peaks and falls with wavering vocal melodies that metaphorically pronounce the verified range of emotions. Through jingling high-hats, rocking, rich electric riffs, twangy guitars and a range of percussion that has a softer, tropical sound, “I Could Do Better” is truly transcending. The vocals are soft and restrained, yet clear and powerful, adding to the juxtaposition of the feelings around the journey of going sober. Longstreet explains, “I think the theme is a voyage of floating in space, the big chaotic crash down and every small step after in getting grounded.”

SLUGS have been on tours with LP & The Districts and have opened for Jessica Lea Mayfield, Joywave, Lets Eat Grandma & The Mattson II. Having garnered acclaim from the likes of Refinery29, Live Nation’s Ones to Watch, American Songwriter and Earmilk, SLUGS are certainly an artist to watch in 2021.

Subversive electropop act Babyangel69 today unveils their latest bold foray on their quest to vanquish queerphobia wherever it might exist.

“Cruel Intentions” is a disco-infused pop bop with a groove that belies its tale of being sexually attracted to someone who you know doesn’t serve you. Through pulsing synths and snappy drums, Baby agonizes over the choice between giving into that temptation (and accepting the consequences), or ultimately deciding to move on.

The accompanying video dishes up a loving homage to queer icons, which Baby describes as “George Michael through the lens of Britney Spears”. Oozing technicolor paint scenes are interspersed with snatches of bodies in shadow, Baby in an iridescent wing set, and cuts of a spotlit Baby dancing. Their corset-clad hairy adult body simultaneously defying smooth-skinned queer pop stereotypes and highlighting the pervese absurdity of the sexualized imagery forced upon the teen pop princesses they grew up adoring. Discussing the use of vibrant rainbow hues on reflective materials, Baby explains, “ I just wanted it to be unapologetically rainbow but in a fresh way.“

&quot;Pieces together a scene that sounds like laidback dance floors — the type of cool
down energy of a dive bar where you&#39;ve kept the tab open all night to escape your
thoughts.&quot; – PAPER
Cult San Diego wunderkind TEMPOREX returns to the soundsphere with his
breathy, uptempo gem ‘U Open Up A Window – the second release from his highly
anticipated new album Bowling out June 18th.
The precocious, elusive star – who shot to cult fame with his hit “Nice Boys” – offers
up another breathless joyride of a track, dreamy keys and fanciful musings on
inspiration fusing together to form a homage to everyone who&#39;s inspired or exposed
Flores to new things that have impacted his life.  Inspired sonically by &quot;Heroes&quot; by
David Bowie, &quot;Love… Thy Will Be Done&quot; by Prince, and Cocteau Twins, it’s another
timely reminder of the young artist’s innate skill in crafting a sense of vintage
nostalgia, whilst planting himself distinctly in today’s effervescent culture.

Speaking on the video, TEMPOREX states: &quot;There are a lot of things that many
people have introduced me to that have stuck with me throughout my life and there’s
really no way to accurately express how much of an impact they’ve made on you by
showing you something one day that they just thought was cool.”

As the leading superstar of modern-day dancehall, Popcaan has etched out an international career that has seen him push the music genre to infiltrate and influence sounds on a worldwide level. From collaborations with Drake, Jamie xx, Pusha T, Giggs, Matoma, Wale, Gorillaz and Davido, the culturally rich soundscape of today can undoubtedly be traced back to find Popcaan’s name within it.
 
STREAM/PURCHASE: POPCAAN – SURVIVOR
 
Popcaan recently shifted into ‘Survivor’ mode for his latest single, which narrates the tale of the entertainer’s formative years, struggling to achieve success amidst paying homage to those who remained loyal to him throughout the ordeal. Spearheaded by the Terror Family Productions duo, Courtney ‘Stamma T’ Samuels and Mark Lawrence are the architects behind the single that has been trending on Youtube and streaming platforms for the past two weeks and playlisted by noteworthy media outlets including Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs’ REVOLT TV.  
 
Matched with an accompanying visual by Kryss Ras and Prof of Tower Music Media Group (TMMG), that was shot throughout the thoroughfares of St. Andrew and St. Catherine, the video for ‘Survivor’ extends the introspection of the track and delivers sun kissed scenes and eye-catching angles that capture Popcaans antics. The song serves as one of Popcaan’s increasingly more diverse sounding offerings, bordering on a reggae/R&B fusion. The video gained over a million views within 2 weeks and also grabbed attention of reggae star Chronixx, who recently hailed Popcaan on IG for having the “craziest melodies” in the game, according to Dancehallmag.com 
 
The lead single from the Solid Focus Riddim compilation, a 4-track collection of individual songs created from the same instrumental, Popcaan is the first to introduce the sound via ‘Survivor’. The full EP is now revealed in its entirety, which exclusively features members of Popcaan’s Unruly Entertainment camp including Zamunda with ‘Preserve My Life’, burgeoning upstarts Furnace with ‘Unafraid Life’ while Valiant serves up ‘Poverty Get A Way’ to cap the presentation.
 
STREAM/PURCHASE – SOLID FOCUS RIDDIM
 
Though long-term friends, ‘Survivor’ is the first time Popcaan and Terror Family Productions have collaborated with Stamma Texplaining: “The success of Survivor is very encouraging and I’m confident the ‘Solid Focus Riddim EP’  will undeniably become a favorite globally. There is something special about each track, all the artistes were on the same frequency during the studio session. Survivor has already captured the hearts of fans and we remain hopeful this will carry over to the rest of the project.” 
Distributed by international outlet EMPIRE, who recently inked a deal with Terror Family Production as part of a continued thrust to support the reggae and dancehall genres, label executive Mark Lawrence of TFP added that: “We are aware that the other members of the Unruly Entertainment camp are not as established as Popcaan, nonetheless the quality of their music is top-notch”.
 

Brendan Scott Friel has a songwriting finesse that is evident from the very first lines of his spell-binding songs. With expert musicianship and storytelling, Brendan crafts a completely immersive indie folk experience, earning his reputation as a high-calibre professional in his home city of Windsor, Ontario. Since hitting the ground running with his self-produced solo album Quiet Cars in 2017, Brendan has become a local media favourite, and an export-ready artist, with international tours and hundreds of shows already under his belt. His 2019 single “Border City Town” extolled the highs and lows of life along the Detroit river, sparking interviews and features with CTV, CBC, and the Windsor Star, and the song’s inclusion on the locally acclaimed “Wards of Windsor – Forwards and Backwards” compilation. Brendan’s recently released “Shadows” is the second single off his upcoming album Summer Moons. The album sees Friel partnering up with producer James Bunton (Donovan Woods, Joey Landereth) and is scheduled to release in April.

Breakout artist Grant returns to Monstercat with his third single this year, in collaboration with pop singer-songwriter Emily Vaughn. The duo unleash their dreamy new track, “Move On” today, packed with honest lyricism, shimmering synths, and nostalgic chords. It’s the clearest shift toward Grant’s new indie-pop sound, stepping into the next chapter of his artistry and instrumentation.

Grant says, “Move On” is a song that I wrote with Emily back in my college dorm room a few years ago. We wanted to write a song that would help people going through break ups or other hardships. It actually gathered dust for a little before I revisited it in 2020 during quarantine, but I always loved its simplicity and the melodies we wrote. I’ve done my fair share of bangers, and it was cool to purposefully strip back production a little bit on this one.”

Emily adds, “When we wrote “Move On” back in Grant’s college dorm a few years back, it felt like magic—and it has become more and more magical and relatable as time has passed. The concept is simple: how it feels to go from everything to nothing with someone and the steps taken to move on. There is no time limit or handbook to healing, and even when you do everything right during a breakup, you may still deeply miss them, and this song digs into that feeling.”

Grant started releasing music in 2014 when he was only 16. Since then, he’s earned over 65 million streams, remixes for Selena Gomez, Zedd and Kehlani, and appearances on stages like EDC Las Vegas, Tomorrowland, and more. His last single, “Won’t Give Up,” flexed his own vocal chops, further demonstrating his commitment to writing and producing. Emily Vaughn is an LA-based singer-songwriter with over 20 million streams and collabs with the likes of Smallpools, Gareth Emery, Taska Black, and others. Her confidence and searing one-liners shine on her debut project, ‘Bitch Bops’, which received widespread praise in 2019. 

Upcoming Sheffield rap star Rickyleupnext releases new single ‘Till I Die’ featuring one of the Guardian’s titled ‘biggest hitter outside the M25’, Deep Green. The single is the latest in a stream of increasingly hot releases from the ‘one to watch’ rapper that continues to define his sound.
 
STREAM/PURCHASE – RICKYLEUPNEXT FT DEEP GREEN – TILL I DIE

Having already collaborated on Deep Green’s January single ‘On Me’, the favour is returned as Deep Green jumps on board for ‘Till I Die’. Bringing two opposite tones to the record, Rickyleupnext delivers a casually dexterous and melodic hook as he weaves in and out of soulful singing before laying a heavier rap flow for his verses. Meanwhile the unmistakable, signature tones of Deep Greens voice reverberate through the record for his swaggering rap flow. Mixing moody trap production with brutal honesty, ‘Till I Die’ explores the rappers’ bold personality and penmanship with trap life bars.  

WATCH ‘TILL I DIE’ VIDEO
 
Starting out as a promising basketball player who played for England, as well as for Sheffield Saints, Sheffield Arrows and his home county Yorkshire, Rickyleupnext’s passion for music soon took his career in a different direction. Whilst studying at college and spending his spare time in the studio, he began to explore his musical talents and was soon plugged in to the thriving local music pool. Standing out as an example of the maturity of regional rap scenes, the single was inevitably going to happen. Hailing from Upperthorpe in Sheffield, the pair share their hometown and have a well-seasoned musical friendship that began with one of Rickyleupnext’s first track appearances on the 2017 release of Deep Green’s ‘Money’. The collaboration saw the pair perform the track live together for DJ Charlie Sloth’s ‘The Plug Tour’ at Sheffield’s O2 Academy leading to an explosive start for Rickyleupnext’s career. Continuing to release online videos and singles, he has built a sturdy collection of music that includes ‘Know That’, ‘Wife’, ‘Hood Celebrity’, ‘Fly Boy’ and Bueno, each of them helping to evolve and hone his own musical style. 
 
Representing the dynamic spectrum of today’s musical tastes and styles, Rickyleupnext delivers considered versatility and application of drill, rap and R&B as he flaunts equal strength on rap flows as he does with his ability to sing.

Jimkata are a three-piece anthemic, synth-washed, electro-rock band based out of Ithaca. With a triumph of swirling analog synths, infectious pop hooks and candid lyrics, Jimkata have built a distinct sound which has been resonating with listeners across the country. 

Friends since middle school, Evan Friedell, Aaron Gorsch and Packy Lunn infuse Jimkata, (named after the so-bad-it’s-good 1985 gym-fu caper Gymkata) with both an adventurous musical streak and relatable lyrical themes. Mixed in with the modern synth sensibilities and hard driven indie rock are influences drawn from the likes of Motown, singer-songwriters like James Taylor and even old country songs, where storytelling and a quick turn of phrase share priorities with melody and the beat. Jimkata have concocted an unusually rich and rewarding mix and one that’s evolved naturally. 

After taking a two and a half year hiatus following the release of six studio albums and the successful building of a vibrant, grassroots fanbase, Jimkata are preparing to release their next album, Bonfires. The 10 track album is set for release as a series of singles every month with an accompanying visuals and merch line. Thematically, Bonfires touches on poignant themes of uncertainty, being in limbo, and looking for an anchor of hope in these trying times.

Bonfires is set for release summer 2021 worldwide.

Edmonton indie pop artist Kaeley Jade is excited to announce the release of her new single ‘Painless’ out today on all digital platforms. 

Produced by the Juno-nominated team at Velveteen Music‘Painless’, dances through the nuclear fallout of a relationship gone awry. Inspired by artists like Vance Joy and Maggie Rogers, ‘Painless’ is filled to the brim with shimmering hooks, velvety vocals and groovy riffs. Both cynical and celebratory, the Métis artist disguises a deep emotional rawness in a crisp and vibrant package of indie pop.

“In a lot of ways, ‘Painless’ is a continuation of the story I had told in my debut single, ‘Years Ago’,” says Kaeley.  “All of my songs are sparked from my own personal experiences, and in this case, I had more to say on that particular chapter of my life. Where ‘Years Ago’ looks wistfully into the past at what could have been, ‘Painless’ is a seer’s look into a dystopian future. I wrote it as a reminder to myself to always trust my instincts, because some things just aren’t worth the pain that comes with pursuing them, as tempting as they might be.”

Also out today is the colourful and creatively shot video for ‘Painless’Kaeley explains: “The pandemic really forced us to get creative with how we shot the video. While I had always envisioned a project that combined my skills as a multidisciplinary artist, figuring out how to achieve that while being forced to work with a lot of limitations proved to be an exciting challenge. We shot the entire video in a mock studio we built in my dad’s shop, and we had a very small crew on set, with my cohort doing most of the helping out.”

From the heart of Hatton Garden, GIO has clad rap stars and celebrities with jewels, chains, diamonds and watches, building an impressive clientele and a respected name within the lavish industry. The jeweler has travelled throughout the world to luxurious hotspots including Dubai and the U.S.A, serving clients that include the likes of J Hus , Big Narstie, Charlie Sloth, Mular Juice, Manchester United stars’ Rashford and Wan-Bisaka and boxer Anthony Yarde, but there’s a difference when it comes to GIO and one not to be missed. He can rap.
 
Revealing his brand new single, aptly named ‘Dr Ice’GIO treads his Hatton Garden turf for the shining visuals that glisten with jewellery packed scenes as he unfolds a tale of the come up from a life in the hood. Delivering “raw rap straight from the soul”, GIO has an unconventional and creative flow that piques your curiosity as you listen in and hooks you in to his every word.
 
STREAM/DOWNLOAD: GIO – DR ICE
 
Making his release debut in late 2019 with ‘Winners Never Quit’, GIO then brought out ‘Believe’ in November 2020 building on his growing traction in the scene. His most recent release, in February 2021 was with ‘Focused’ on Mixtape Madness, which gained serious attention, earning him 125K views and a buzz around the iced out rappers name.
 
Growing up in Homerton (Hackney) alongside close friends such as Unknown T, GIO’s path into the music industry began at aged 13 when his father went to jail and he started penning lyrics. Whilst his position in society and his immediate circle stacked the odds against him for a clean and clear future, GIO switched his focus to one of productivity and positivity as he became a jeweler at just 15 years old, starting his career with the ‘ICEJEWLZ’ family business. Creating stability and security around himself through his determined focus on his career, GIO has since been able to ease off the pressure to afford him his time with his passion, music.
 
Marrying his two passions for his brand-new release, it is the perfect time to introduce Dr Ice himself, GIO, to your playlist.

Melbourne sister duo, Charm of Finches, sing haunted folk tunes about love, grief and whispering trees with their signature tight sibling harmonies and chamber folk sound. Mabel and Ivy Windred-Wornes emerge from an eclectic musical childhood of Celtic strings and busking old-time tunes. 

Their debut album “Staring at the Starry Ceiling”, produced by Nick Huggins of Little Lake Records and featuring the duo’s signature angelic vocal harmonies and captivating chamber folk sound, was praised for its candour and originality and named one of the best releases of 2016 by ABC Radio National. Their sophomore album “Your Company” in November 2019 on their independent label Conversations With Trees, they toured Australia widely.  This album was Melbourne’s PBS Radio Album of the Week and winner of the Best Folk/Singer-Songwriter Album in the Independent Music Awards (IMA). 

The duo has won many awards nationally and internationally and their music has featured on Australian TV. Their influences include Sufjan Stevens , Gillian Welch, Danish songstress Agnes Obel and First Aid Kit as well as the incredible homegrown talent in their local Victorian folk scene.

Wisconsin-born artist Carey Renee makes her fiery introduction with her upcoming debut single “House is Burning.” Produced by Dru Decaro (Snoop Dogg, Miguel, John Legend) and Adam Kobylarz, the electro-RnB track is available now on all streaming sites. 

Music was a big part of Carey’s life early on. Since age 3, she had been playing violin and piano and singing in choirs. Born with a congenital heart defect, Carey decided to take a different path and dedicate her life to helping sick children. After working for over 10 years as a nurse and nurse practitioner in neonatal and pediatric care, she decided to turn back to writing music and finding her voice again. After planning to record a few cover songs as a Christmas gift for her father, her recording sessions quickly turned into collaborations with several musicians and producers. A dozen new songs rapidly emerged from these sessions, including her debut single. 

“House is Burning,” the debut single by Carey Renee, is out now!

neillfrazer@hotmail.com

 

 

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Written by Neill Frazer

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