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Best Music Blog for New Artists

Mikey Wayne – Coming Home: A Cuttingly Flawless Folk Confession

Mikey Wayne’s latest single, Coming Home, stands out as a remarkable addition to the folk genre, exuding a sincerity that captivates from the first chord. This single, a confluence of Nashville country and Wayne’s Southern Californian and Alabaman influences, offers an intimate glimpse into the soul of its creator.

The song’s strength lies in its raw honesty and the profound way Wayne owns his imperfections. He eloquently expresses the nuances of a relationship’s push and pull, encapsulating the struggle and beauty of growth within a partnership. Lyrics such as “If you’ll have me baby, I’m coming home” cuts like a knife of resonance while the gentle tenacity in the acoustic guitar strings amplifies the precision of the incision by echoing the universal yearning for acceptance and love. He may not have spoken for us all word for word, but we can all find a piece of ourselves within the single.

The official music video for Coming Home, which was recorded in Echo Mountain Studios, premiered on YouTube on January 26th.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Evolution 9 went interstellar with their nebulous synth-pop harmonies in Tell Me Something

If Grandaddy’s polyphonic melodies never fail to stir your soul, consider the latest single, Tell Me Something, from Evolution 9 as an unmissable sonic event. The unbridled synthesis of sound and emotion resonates with exhilaratingly rare depth. The rock-amplified synth-pop hit, which shares the same rhythmically cosmic air as Inspiral Carpets will envelop you in a kaleidoscope of colour as it vibrantly through its meticulously carved progressions.

The Beach Boys-esque vocal harmonies are a standout feature, adding layers of warmth and nostalgia to the track. These harmonies intertwine seamlessly with the synth melodies, creating a sound that is both familiar and fresh. The effect is akin to rediscovering a beloved classic while experiencing something entirely new.

Evolution 9’s ability to balance complexity with accessibility will undoubtedly see them go far in the current climate that necessitates singles that exude as much zeal as this dynamic, almost serendipitous gem.

Stream Tell Me Something on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Meet the mess of mortality in Chris Cummings and the Way’s tenaciously tongue-in-cheek Americana rock instant classic,  I’m Still Alive

In an era when coming to grips with the meaning of life complicates your relationship with your mortality, Chris Cummings and the Way’s latest Americana-entwined 70s rock-tinged single, I’m Still Alive, has all the lyrical makings of a sanity-saving playlist staple.

Chris Cummings, an Easton native renowned for his collaborations with jazz legends and New York artists, embarked on a tenaciously tongue-in-cheek journey with his latest feat of roots-wrapped ingenuity. The prelude to his eponymous album resonates with the nostalgic glamour reminiscent of Father John Misty and Butch Walker while pontificating on the profound. The brash electric guitar chords, coupled with the shimmer of the organ and the subtle honkytonk nuances in the keys and guitar leads, create a soundscape that is both timeless and deeply evocative.

Even though the single touches on the notion that reasons for living and believing often lie beyond ourselves, Chris Cummings and the Way ensure the track never veers too far into the melancholic. It’s a gripping exposition of what it means to be human when we have no fucking idea what the meaning of life is. This existential contemplation is woven seamlessly into the fabric of the song, making it both a personal reflection and a universal query.

The upcoming album, accompanied by a documentary film, promises to be a convergence of Cummings’ Americana and rock n roll roots, offering relatable tunes for our twisted times. Featuring talents like Roger Girke and Shane Nicholas, it’s poised to be a significant addition to the Americana folk rock landscape.

I’m Still Alive is now available to stream on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Casino Moon boiled the human experience down to birth, sex, and death in their indie folk-rock revelation, Fearless

Casino Moon, the South London-based Americana folk-rock ensemble, has distilled the essence of the human experience into their latest single, ‘Fearless’, which unravels as a journey through life’s most primal elements – birth, sex, and death – wrapped in a melody that’s as infectious as it is profound.

‘Fearless’ grips you with its upbeat folk instrumental arrangement, setting the stage for a musical expedition that’s both exhilarating and introspective. The chorus bursts forth with a fearless tenacity, its lively rhythm a stark contrast to the more contemplative alt-indie verses that invite you to delve deeper into the song’s candid narrative.

Casino Moon’s cultivated sound, recognised by icons like Tom Robinson and Robert Smith, shines through in ‘Fearless’. The band’s talent for transforming untold stories into addictive sounds is evident in every chord, lyric and harmony. The vocals seamlessly switch up in energy, mirroring the dynamism of the instrumentals. From the resonant vibrato in the lower registers to the fervour and zeal in the soul-augmented choruses, the vocal performance is a masterclass in raw, unadulterated emotion.

Consider ‘Fearless’ a blueprint for living life with unbridled passion; the crescendos and echoes of evocative wisdom fuel the listener with invincibility. As Casino Moon continues to garner acclaim, with standout performances at festivals and alongside notable artists, ‘Fearless’ stands as a testament to their burgeoning legacy.

Stream Fearless as part of Casino Moon’s Woody Bay EP on Spotify now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Nick Pike has debuted a neo-classic composition of profound contemplation with the release of ‘Norastoria’

Nick Pike

Nick Pike’s instrumental neo-classical piece, Norastoria, is a composition of contemplation, capturing the tenderness of tentative new beginnings as vividly as the tumultuousness of reality which demands resilience to weather life’s relentless storms.

Each note is as accessible as the last in the endlessly inviting piece which keeps its finger on the evocative pulse. Words are surplus to requirement through Pike’s talent in depicting human narratives in humble neo-classic melodies. Pike’s ability to infuse each note with a sense of purpose and feeling is remarkable. The single is a journey through the highs and lows of the human experience, rendered with a sensitivity and depth that only a musician of Pike’s calibre can achieve.

As a London-based producer, multi-instrumentalist, and educator, Pike brings a unique blend of influences to Norastoria, the title single prised from his debut solo album, from the classical echoes of Beethoven and Debussy to the rhythmic intricacies of jazz and funk. The title single is a testament to Pike’s versatility and his ability to weave diverse musical threads into a cohesive and engaging narrative.

Norastoria will be available to stream and purchase on all major platforms from January 12th. Discover Nick Pike’s sound via his official website.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Naws extolled the virtue of patience in their melodic chill house single, Relevance

Intimacy and innovation became the cornerstones of the latest melodic chill house single, Relevance, from the West Bridgford-residing electronica outfit, Naws. Relevance is an odyssey through the intricate layers of human emotion, crafted with a blend of analog warmth and digital precision while unravelling as a testament to Naws’ Welsh heritage and their passion for creating music that resonates on a profound level.

The track is an immersive sugared pill. Swallow, and you’ll delve into its expansively oceanic depth, where the vastness of the soul is explored, guided by the haunting refrain, “Take your time with me”. This simple yet powerful lyric encapsulates the essence of the track – a call for patience and understanding in a world that often forgets the value of these virtues. It is a reminder of our inherent flaws in a world of fleeting moments and throwaway culture.

Each listen reveals new layers and nuances, making it a track that never grows tired. The use of the Moog Sub37, Roland Juno, and other analog synths infuses the track with a warmth and richness that is increasingly rare in contemporary electronic music.

Naws, with their appearances on BBC Introducing and signings to labels like Freegrant and Hathor, have already established themselves as artists to watch. ‘Relevance’ further cements their position in the melodic, progressive, and chill house genres.

Relevance was officially released on January 1st. Stream the single on YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Modern Ape blended precision with passion in their rallying rock anthem, Justified

In modern rock, few bands capture the essence of soulful anthems quite like Modern Ape. Their latest single, Justified, is a testament to their unique blend of precision and passion. Hailing from North West England, this three-piece ensemble has crafted a sound that resonates with the spirit of rock blues, yet speaks to all generations.

The instrumentals are meticulously tight, showcasing a mastery of craft that is rare and commendable. But it’s the soul that pours from the vocals that truly sets this track apart. It grips you with a fervour reminiscent of Against Me, while the guitar hooks echo the soul-stirring appeal of the Manic Street Preachers. It’s a heartfelt cry wrapped in melody that you’ll want to turn to every time you want to feel alive, and it is that universally shared craving for visceralism which lyrically propels the track forward.

Modern Ape, with their self-deprecating moniker, might not seem like your typical rock heroes, but their music tells a different story. They excel in rallying cries, and Justified is a clarion call to the masses.

Stream the official music video for Justified which premiered on January 1st on YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Awake latent desire with Sometimes Julie’s arcanely empowering soul rock hit, Missed the Boat

The San Diego singer-songwriter duo, Sometimes Julie, rivalled the NYE fireworks by ending 2023 with a bang by unleashing their LP, Seven Wishes on December 31st.  Navigating the tempestuous seas of rock, Sometimes Julie’s standout single, Missed the Boat, is a clarion call to the unfulfilled dreams within us. At the helm of the journey is Monica Sorenson, whose soulful vocal prowess is akin to a lighthouse guiding through foggy doubts. Her voice, imbued with raw, emotive power, intertwines seamlessly with the universal trepidation of time slipping through our fingers.

Rick Walker, the architect of Sometimes Julie’s distinctive sound, chartered a sonic odyssey that transcends sound. His multi-instrumental mastery, reminiscent of a more rock-infused Fleetwood Mac, creates a tapestry where each note resonates with purpose and passion.

If you were looking for permission to embrace your latent desires, it lies within the cultivated blend of storytelling and melodic magnetism, where Sorenson’s voice serves as both the narrator and the protagonist. It’s a journey through self-doubt, culminating in an empowering resolution to seize the moment.

As the final notes fade, you’ll revere Sometimes Julie as storytellers of the soul; their future is as promising as the dreams they inspire.

Missed the Boat hit the airwaves on New Year’s Eve. Stream it on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Nuka-Naka – Stone D: A Soul-Stirring Fusion of Avant-Garde Reggae and Reflection

Nuka-Naka’s latest single, Stone D, is a profound musical journey that transcends the conventional boundaries of reggae. As Nuka-Naka steps away from the shadows of war-torn Russia, Stone D emerges as a hauntingly beautiful confession, a blend of personal history and musical innovation.

The song reimagines reggae, intertwining staccato rhythms with melancholically avant-garde melodies. It’s a bold departure from reggae roots, inviting listeners to cast aside their preconceptions and embrace a new realm of musical expression. After leaving Russia for Georgia, Nuka-Naka composed a guilt-ridden soliloquy that speaks to the inescapable ties of one’s homeland, regardless of the physical distance.

The song captures the essence of being perpetually connected to a war that continues to echo in a mournful psyche as the fusion of soulful blues and dreamy art-rock elements meld into this candid piece creating a sonic signature that is as evocative as it is ground-breaking.

Nuka-Naka’s Stone D is a reminder of the power of music to transcend barriers and speak to the soul. It’s a track that not only showcases Nuka-Naka’s immense talent but also promises a future rich with innovative and emotionally resonant music. For those seeking a fresh, soul-stirring sound, Stone D is a beacon of hope and artistic brilliance.

Stone D was officially released on December 22. Stream the single on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Tyler Street’s latest indie-folk confession, ‘Faith, Wisdom, You’, is spiritual poetry in melodic motion

Candid, confessional, and captivating in equal measure, the latest single, Faith, Wisdom, You, from the Dallas-born, Napa-based singer-songwriter Tyler Street is poetry in melodic motion.

After the raw yet euphonic timbre of the acoustic guitar strings, the up-and-coming luminary cuts straight to the crux of the lyrical essence of the single, which resonantly explores a melancholic exposition of an inability to control the tides of emotion. The gentle vocal performance provides a scintillating juxtaposition to the lyricism, which carries the admission of uncontrollable anger.

With hints of Frightened Rabbit and The National within the indie folk production fused with the soulful warmth of Jack Johnson and the emotional intimacy of Elliott Smith, Tyler Street cultivated his sonic style to complement his soulful aura, which echoes the self-awareness and mindfulness inspired by his spiritual awakening. Take notes of the Eckhart Tolle-esque introspection while losing yourself in the transcendence of the guitar notes as they’re artistically amplified by the presence of chamber strings.

Faith, Wisdom, You was officially released on December 21. Stream the single on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast