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INsiders Guide: G.L.A.M., The Gulps, Katherine Aly, Humble the Great, Brother., Yatez, Taylor Rogers, Maxo Kream, Awir Leon, Monsta X, LEADR…

West Coast producer, rapper and songwriter G.L.A.M drops her arresting new jam “START SH!T”.

Following a string of releases since her debut album in 2017, this newest self-produced track layers brash, lo-fi sonics over blazing percussive elements, a striking offering with clashing lyrical frankness – as G.L.A.M. marks her territory with commanding vocal delivery. Expertly combining fleeting hypnotic accents with tribal-esque influences, “START SH!T” will be sure to continue the attention around an exciting artist able to craft inventive and tasteful soundscapes that live long after the track ends.

Speaking on the track, G.L.A.M. said “The lyrics are pretty blatant, I’m a very chill and non-confrontational person and people tend to misread that as a weakness or an opportunity to be a bully. So, I’m basically saying in this song that I don’t have a problem but if you bring me to that energy I will gladly reciprocate”.

Here come… THE GULPS.

The freshest signing to Alan McGee’s It’s Creation Baby, are releasing their debut single with the tastemaker imprint: “Stuck In The City” (out 29 October 2021).
 
Charged with an electrostatic frisson and fired with an incisive sense of urgency, The Gulps deliver an opening gambit that commands your attention.
 
A visceral punk/rock track for our times, “Stuck In The City” is a song about the slow death of a society which crumbles before our very eyes. Railing against the powers-that-be while swinging at the docile public sleepwalking into its demise; through five-minutes of sound and fury The Gulps action a wake-up call like an atomic bomb, designed to shake society from its slumber.
As frontman and songwriter, Harry All says of the single:
 
“These days we’re living I feel society is falling on a deep clean sweep without getting us in torture labs. Our today’s torture labs are advertisement, consuming, social media… Becoming a sleepy society, advocated to consume drugs, to get likes, to buy online, everyday we see how mental health becomes a bigger issue in our daily lives.
Society is controlled and directed through consuming messages. The idea of your life and the continuous bombarding with advertisement, that sells you empty stimulus of happiness. That’s how we create our own shock or tramp these days. When that disappears the loneliness comes and we become a vulnerable clean sweep society. That’s Stuck in the City, it shows how a person feels in such an aggressive economic and inequality system.”
With the country going down the sh*tter at an accelerating pace, it’s just as well The Gulps are going places fast. Identified by the legendary Steve Strange as his latest and last discovery before his untimely passing, the band were then signed by Creation Records legend Alan McGee and signed to his It’s Creation Baby label for this 2021 release. Cutting their teeth in some major UK venues on tour with ASH since the return of live shows, the band also managed to catch the ear of Steve Lamacq who has already been championing them on BBC 6 Music recently.

Owning a shared philosophy that “music is everything”, The Gulps are a band who are unafraid of a grand statement or to speak their minds. With a defiant sense of belief in their creations and cause, from their limited shows and releases so far the band have earned a reputation for making insurgent alt/rock masterclasses that rage against the injustices of our corrupt and ailing society, while flying the flag for a new era of rock’n’roll.

Edinburgh (UK) based Alt-pop artist Katherine Aly announces the release of her new video and single ‘Pariah’. The track celebrates people uniting together with an intolerance for ‘intolerance’.  An empowering message that challenges those who thoughtlessly manipulate and discriminate against others.

The poignant music video was a collaborative effort between KatherineStuart Breadner (Director), Baz Schmaz (Producer) to feature a diverse group of people in terms of gender, ethnicity and body type, who shared personal stories of being discriminated against. Painted on their bodies are hurtful and insulting remarks that have been addressed to them simply because of their identity. As the video progresses, they individually erase the words off of their bodies, as a symbolic gesture of eradicating stigma, bigotry and hatred.
Pariah is the follow up single to the recent synth-pop fused ‘Glow & Ignite’. Both feature on Katherine’s forthcoming EP and further details about the new offering will arrive in the coming weeks. Digitally released on 17th September – ‘Pariah‘ is available now on various download/streaming platforms.

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/album/1wqGf61aY3mMRjdjxgDRtA

Following on from his recent snappy jam ‘DON’T MAKE ME GO HOME NOW’, emerging 21-year-old artist / producer Humble the Great unveils his nostalgic R&B gem ‘IRIDESCENT’.

Paired with its atmospheric visual, this latest track layers mellifluous guitar licks over pulsating, neo-soul dripped textures, an elegant offering decorated by left-field vocoder flourishes – as Humble pledges to put his pride aside to prioritise a loved one’s happiness. Combining heartfelt lyricism with understated, yet simultaneously climactic, production, ‘IRIDESCENT’ is set to continue the attention around Humble as an exciting newcomer in the UK R&B sphere.

Brother. is an indie alternative band based out of Salt Lake City, Utah. Bringing together an eclectic sound of energetic bass lines, catchy soundscapes and heavy-laden harmonies, band members Chuck Emery, Nathan Standage, Erika Goodwin, Scott Knutson and Elias Pratt deliver an infectiously charismatic, laid-back sound. 

Unveiling their third album, Volume III, the band have crafted a comforting yet melancholy release, where the lyrics and sound don’t seem to quite match. Emery shares, “There are a couple of themes that recur throughout some of the tunes that are fun little easter eggs. A lot of the songs are lyrically sad but set to more upbeat music. We try to hint again at the sadness by throwing in a lot of descending instruments. Another theme is a lyric of mine that really resonates with me, “I never let you down so don’t you forget me now”. It was a lyric I used to throw into my older material but it is something that has never left me.”

“EZ” is the result of wanting to put more honesty into their music and lyrics, creating something that felt fresh and modern while still staying true to their sound. Slow woozy drums and characterful chiming synths that run along the song, the dreamy vocals are soft and rich, floating effortlessly atop the fuzzy guitar and subtle, steady bass. The song’s aura has a hazy, chilled-out atmosphere with an underlying tone of both acceptance and pain. Finding influence in the likes of The Neighbourhood and Porches, “EZ” takes a minimal approach, soaked in vintage synth sounds and an overall warm, easy indie vibe. The song is a reminder to slow down and recenter yourself, as everything will be alright in the end. 

 

“Goodnight Girl” is described as their first official love song. Written about a spouse, the track touches on their deep love and ability to be a light for one another, no matter what dark times, surprises and travels lie ahead. The title “Goodnight Girl” was inspired by the married couple’s goodnight routine, brimming with an appreciation for each other and reinforcing their love. Emery shares, “I wanted this song to not only be for my wife, but for everyone in love or in the process of searching for it. Love comes in many shapes and forms but when you feel it you know it’s love. I hope everyone finds that person who they never have to say goodbye to.”

Yatez is an artist that continues to bring his own unique style to the music industry, the self-produced, smooth elements of this track balanced with his alternative vocal approach summaries the rarity of the artists aura. The visuals for ‘Drowning’ follow in a similar theme, Yatez manages to use stripped back, minimalistic shots that have a profound core message to deliver maximum effect. It shows him sitting in an empty theatre, watching an intimate dance routine. We are also given a scene where Yatez is literally drowning in water. With the use of visually enticing shots such as a mirrored and kaleidoscope effects, as well as an intense red and blue colour grade over elements of the video, we get a true reflection into what is going on inside the mind of the intriguing Birmingham based artist.

Philosophical modern folk artist Taylor Rogers today revisits her 2019 album NOA for a new collaboration with videographer Carl Solether (Beach House, Carly Rae Jepsen, Albert Hammond Jr). “oldhills” takes Rogers’ original composition through a stunning visual journey where Solether’s warm artistic touch conveys the bittersweet sentiment of a love story’s end.

“oldhills” was shot during a road trip across the northeastern United States as Solether relocated from Illinois to New York state. The narrative of the video follows it’s protagonist over a single day on the road. Solether’s treatment cuts to the heart of the genesis of “oldhills”, which was written while Rogers drove between shows during a tour in 2017. Rogers explains, “While driving down south from the northeast, curving around oldhills, a new crush who was also part of an old story consumed my spirit. From these moments on the road, I began humming the melody of a guitar riff my brother had written years ago, and ‘oldhills’ was born.” She continues “The song captures a feeling of wanting someone you cannot be with, someone you should not be with. Both new crushes and old lovers can bring about these feelings–oldhills moves over and around nostalgia and letting go, between desires for past and possible flames, and the pain of refusing those desperate yearnings.”

Maxo Kream shares his highly anticipated album WEIGHT OF THE WORLD via Big Persona/88 Classic/RCA Records. The album features some of the biggest names in the culture including Tyler, the Creator, Monaleo, A$AP Rocky, Freddie Gibbs, and Don Toliver. On Weight of the World, Maxo starkly pours his experiences and grievances throughout the album, detailing the ups and downs of a new life without his late brother and overcoming many obstacles.

STREAM/DOWNLOAD: MAXO KREAM – WEIGHT OF THE WORLD

WEIGHT OF THE WORLD has a distinctly more serious and purposeful tone than its predecessor as it details the events that have happened after the tragic passing of his brother, Mmadu Biosah. In a comeback to rap this summer, Rolling Stone recognized Maxo as Houston’s best young voice stating he’s “the start of a new wave in Houston rap.”  He followed up with “Local Joker,” the massive “Big Persona” record featuring Tyler, the Creator, and most recently “Greener Knots” which warmed fans up awaiting the new album.

Amsterdam-based multidisciplinary artist Awir Leon returns today with his new video for “Anthem Grey.” As with his previous releases, Awir Leon seamlessly explores his writing from various angles — electronic experimentation to minimalistic ballads and beyond. Also a professional dancer, he has collaborated with many choreographers, for whom he has subsequently composed original musical creations, notably Emanuel Gat and Amala Dianor. Awir means “sky” in Gaelic, and his music bears many influences which ignore borders. His artistic and musical journey caught Woodkid’s eye, who invited him last year to be part of his band and gave him the opportunity to open all headlining shows on his current tour.

“Anthem Grey” features additional production by Maxime Le Guil (Radiohead, Justice, Soko) and mixing by Chris Tabron (Beyoncé, Kelela). The video was directed by acclaimed artist Neels Castillon (represented by the Ridley Scott Creative Group). Neels Castillon has built a reputation directing visually rich and emotionally engaging films in challenging environments.

Of the song, Awir Leon shares: “‘Anthem Grey’ is the most direct track I’ve ever written. I didn’t work on it, there was no writing, it just came out as more of an event, a burst. I decided to leave it exactly as it came, I did not want to tame it in any way. Its message is what has always given me drive, it’s an anthem to finding the strength to push walls, find colors, and continuously amplify our life force. With life throwing shit at us we end up just trying to stay afloat, but there’s more than that. There’s colors, and we don’t want grey.”

Director, Neels Castillon: “When I listen to Awir’s music, I feel this urge for an explosion of energy after this difficult year with the pandemic. This is why I imagined this liberating fall that will free us from our grey world. We get the feeling of being stuck in our lives, in our habits. This video is going to be a hymn to break free from this alienating routine. Of course, taking the plunge is scary. This fear is symbolized by the hole in which you have to let yourself be sucked in to be able to live a colorful life again.”

Awir delves into the creative process around the clip: “I wanted to work with Neels on this video because we have that drive in common, I know he understands the feeling that I get from the song. What I had in mind for the video was something that is both fantastic, to mirror the epic that the song evokes, and at the same time very human, intimate like what helps you wake up. Small thoughts that you help grow, until they’re big enough to share.”

worldwide phenomenon Monsta X announce their upcoming English-language album, The Dreaming, will be released December 10 through Intertwine (BMG) in collaboration with Starship Entertainment. Pre-order will be available beginning Friday, October 22.Monsta X shared the first taste of the album with the Top 40 smash single “One Day,” which is currently at #32 and continuing to climb the charts. This marks the group’s third Top 40 single — and as Forbes reports, makes Monsta X only the second K-pop group in history to appear on the chart more than once. Access Hollywoodwrote, “Monsta X is back at it with another stunning single,” while PAPER Magazine praised the “heartfelt, soaring ballad, the kind that they do so well,” calling the track “an auspicious introduction to the next chapter in the storied K-pop band’s history.” Teen Voguesaid, “With a mid-tempo beat and good vibes all around, ‘One Day’ makes us excited for what Monsta X has coming up next.”

Following the release of their latest song “I’m Alright”, rising digital pop artist LEADR has collaborated with Penguin Prison on a remix of the track. The New York- based electro-pop artist/producer/songwriter/DJ put a rapturous, disco twist on LEADR’s latest powerful anthem.

Listen to “I’m Alright (Penguin Prison Remix)” HERE.

LEADR said the song helped him understand and forgive a relationship that did not work. “When I wrote this song, it was therapeutic for me because it was a reminder that I had to sever these old cords to improve my overall well-being. Plus, it’s such a release knowing how to set healthy is vital.”

neillfrazer@hotmail.com

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Written by Neill Frazer

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