I Blame Coco ditched the moniker and goes by her birth name Eliot Sumner nowadays; not only did she get rid of the name, she also matured *quite* a bit in her sound. No more radio friendly electronic pop, but pop-tingled bloody damn rock, with proper guitars and drums and everything. Her strong growl comes to its proper right on new EP Information and and has you blaming whoever pushed her in that former sound. The title track sounds like the kind of anthem that could heat up an entire stadium.
Say Lou Lou have their big nu disco moment with new single Games For Girls, the first official single leading up to their long-awaited full-length Lucid Dreaming (set for a February 2, 2015 release). The twins collaborated with one of the finest producers in the genre / their personal favorite Lindstrøm; the disco rhythm sits strong against their usually straight-forward, ethereal grand pop songs: consider it the girls’ own little guilty pleasure (aptly titled Games For Girls).
Easily as colorful as their artwork, Fantastic Fantasic live up to the name in all aspects of the word. At the first glimpse they might remind you of Jungle (keywords: two guys, black jackets, London, electronic pop), but Fantastic Fantastic are far more playful than the former: there’s layers and layers of quirky effects packed into pop brilliance, and it comes with this easy breezy Summer wind that just puts a giant smile on your face.
If you throw three entirely different London hipsters in an empty steel drum and blend it all together, you’re pretty sure to pull Years & Years out of the potpourri. The boys create a lush, soulful and very contemporary sound that will have you do a body roll within seconds and for minutes. The beats and vocals are crisp clean, yet the trio make you wanna get dirty. Take Shelter is the kind of song that just wants you to invite your friends over and throw a party, and their cover of Blu Cantrell’s Breathe almost makes you forget about Sean Paul’s existence.
Musical sisters Ibeyi showcase the sense for rhythm they inherited from their late father, percussion legend Anga Diaz, on River, the flip on their debut AA-sided single Oya / River. While Oya was all kinds of spiritual mastership and saw the twins enchant with looped vocals over a very ghostly Richard Russell-production, River is the proper pop song (on their own terms). In a way it reminds us of the late Bobby Womack, teasing with those broken drums and perfectly placed cracks, yet Ibeyi breathe a fresh, young wind through it all. They’ve got big shoes to fill, but the pair of this beautiful debut offering certainly ain’t everything but a misstep. The video, directed by Ed Morris, is dedicated to Oshun, the river Goddess and has them performing the song on and below the surface of a river.
Apart from making people wonder whether he’s a boy or girl, Shamir dazzles literally everyone with his debut EP Northtown. Impossible to file within just one genre, the 19 year old touches everything from DFA disco to something that can be filed next to Nina Simone. Have his sad disco soundtrack your one-man slumber party please - you will most definitely end up dancing teary eyed. To say Northtown is exquisite is quite the understatement.
She may have already had to deal with typical internet theories that come with today’s possibly quick rise to fame, but Ryn Weaver confirms she just is the real deal with OctaHate follow-up Promises (even though she’s never meant to break her own promises). It’s the title track of her forthcoming debut EP of the same name (to be released on Friends Keep Secrets, a new label set up by Benny Blanco) and recalls a bit of Sia at moments, with the production being stretched out synth-wise and reminding us of Passion Pit’s early days with those rhythmic bleeps.
FAMY are gearing up for the release of their longtime-coming debut full-length We Fam Econo (out on September 8) with the release of the tasty 4-track EP Ava. It sees the skewed folk-pop foursome re-do one of our favorite tracks of theirs (Ava) with a slightly different, somewhat more epic mix. The Epilogue is far more bed time story material, just like next one Peter Pan which should squeeze the final energy of the day out of the listeners. The straight forward and jabbering Have You Ever Seen The Rain finishes off the EP and yet more has us anticipating the full-length.
Those steel drums you missed so much are back, and once more Kate Boy are the driving force behind it - Self Control perfectly aligns with their earlier stomping electronic pop, and it seems like they’ve just sped up the tempo again. Kate Akhurst really takes things in her own hands, shouting “so free ourselves / don’t let nobody take control” - here’s to hoping they keep up that spirit, with more details of their long-awaited full-length coming in the next few months.
Sophie bubbles up once more after the storm he created with Bipp and Elle, and yet again he fills a void of contemporary pop music we had no idea even existed with Lemonade. The chorus sounds like a kawaii 12” played on 78 RPM, with the stomping bass strolling around the high-pitched Lemonade vocal around which the track was build - it basically sounds like nothing else and everything else at the exact same time.
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