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Blog Showcasing Singer Songwriter Talent

stella. playfully broached the implausibility of equanimity in love with the twee maturity in ‘A Study in Balance’

If you prefer your indie pop sans filters, facades and pretension, the latest convivial offering from stella.’s upcoming EP, A Study in Balance, raises the bar for confessional candour and introspective expression.

The title single from the breakthrough NYC indie pop artist comes alive through innocently playful piano chord progressions and vocal harmonies which soften the blow of the lyricism which holds no prisoners when confronting the most conflicting aspects of relationship dynamics. By finding an affable way to allude to the implausibility of equanimity within a relationship when too much is never enough until it tips the balance in the other way, stella. released one of the most relatable singles of the year.

Somewhat ironically, the symmetry between twee tendencies and songwriting sophistication within A Study in Balance was right on point; we already can’t wait to hear the lyrical wisdom bestowed within the singles that are still to drop from stella.’s sophomore EP.

A Study in Balance was officially released on May 3rd; stream the single on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Dani Enli opened the doorway to the RnB Pop pantheon with ‘till the end of time’

After the phenomenal success of her debut single, used to it, singer-songwriter & producer Dani Enli ensured the momentum amassing around her stayed high by releasing her sophomore single, till the end of time. By synthesising future-forward RnB melodies with a pensive trap beat and the sentimentality of pop balladry, Enli opened the doorway to the RnB pop pantheon with the downtempo release which gives every aching word to breathe and resonate over the synths that echo emotion as much as the lyrical poetry.

The bittersweet RnB pop symphony delivers the heart-wrenching epiphany that in the mind and reality of the one that got away, all you will ever be is a memory that fades. Inspired, written, composed and produced following a breakup, the single tenderly explores the transitions between resentment and longing, regret and mourning, proving that nothing is ever black and white; everything lies on a spectrum which Enli profoundly explores with the blissful tonal hues that drift between the progressions in this mellifluously flawless production.

till the end of time reached the airwaves on May 10th; add the single to your Spotify playlists or stream the single on YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Witness the resurrection of old-school soul in Shaun Finn’s plea for salvation, Mrs. Doctor

There’s no aural cocktail for the soul as alchemically potent as the opening soul rock salvo, Mrs. Doctor, from Shaun Finn’s debut EP, Oak & King.

The conduit for the soul of old-school soul and blues used euphonic melodic cadences to filter raw and confronting lyricism through, ensuring the vintage timbres of the track hit with maximum dualistic impact. The urgency within the pleas for medicinal salvation matches the sincerity of the delivery, which is sure to strike a chord of empathy with anyone who isn’t a long way down the sociopathic spectrum.

Just when you thought that Shaun Finn couldn’t possibly impress anymore, the smoky laidback arcane air slips away to make room for one of the most paralysing blues-rock guitar solos carved on this side of the millennium.

The Vancouver-based artist’s ability to reach out directly to you while immersing yourself in his emotional expression is one thing. The talent exhibited in this vignette of a soul searching for a cure is another. Why his name isn’t in lights across international stadiums is honestly beyond me.

Stream Shaun Finn’s debut EP, Oak & King on Spotify or stream the official music video on YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Excavate yourself away from anxiety with Jennifer Jess’ alt-pop tour de force, Evergreen

After hitting the 1 million Spotify streams mark with her debut single, Blue, in 2019 and building a loyal 18,000+-strong fanbase, Jennifer Jess has always been dangerous to underestimate. Yet, there was no anticipating what the Atlanta singer, songwriter and producer would bring with her latest single, Evergreen, which digs deep into how fear is the ultimate inhibitor, especially when it plasters a façade on our authenticity and locks us into the stagnation of paralysis.

The lyrical centrepiece, “I’ve been afraid before but more afraid of fear itself”, is all the more resounding when projected through the visceral soul of Jennifer Jess’ striking delivery which cuts as sharp as the orchestral strings which quiver over the dark and moody electronica aesthetic which sonically visualises the metaphorical storm Jess is breaking free from.

Strident, striking and artfully intense, Evergreen is far more than an aurally powerful alt-pop release; it forces you to accept that no one can help you break away from fear or keep your dog in the fight for you. The hurricane force of the production is formidable enough to convince you to create a defining point in your reality by excavating yourself away from anxiety, and that is exactly why Jess has a legion of fans behind her.

Evergreen will be available to stream on all platforms, including SoundCloud, from May 17th.

Discover more ways to connect with Jennifer Jess through her official website.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Camila Knight Evoked (Day)Dream Pop Perfection in ‘Lavender Fields’

Camila Knight

Otherworldly enough to open a portal to a different dimension, the last self-produced single to be released from Camila Knight’s EP, Spacetime, evokes soulfully arcane alchemy that seduces the senses straight from the chorally lush progression. Even if Lavender Fields solely showcased her spellbindingly ornate and cuttingly crystalline vocal lines the dreamy bedroom pop ballad would be a standing ovation-worthy score.

By filtering the power of her flawlessly tender vocals through a reverb-rich and spacey with timeless soul production, the singer-songwriter, known for her affecting vocals and empowering lyrics, ensured that Lavender Fields is a sonic landscape far too much of a haven to want to leave.

Her words consume as they spill into the paradox of a filmic soundscape that arrests with ethereal textures while reaching the epitome of evocative intensity. The aching exposition of coming to terms with the kind of unattainable love that leaves us inclined to resign ourselves to daydreams because reality is too painful to bear, speaks to a phenomenon we can all relate to on some level. It speaks of the sanctuary of imagination while conjuring an aesthetic of delusional reverie, feeling far too personal to be a diary entry.

By pulling inspiration from an expansive selection of artists including Lorde, Ella Fitzgerald, AURORA and Joni Mitchell, Camila Knight hasn’t just forged a distinctive sonic signature, she’s written an entire chapter with her sound which resounds, most profoundly, in the ears of the outliers and disenfranchised.

Lavender Fields will be available to stream on all major platforms, including Spotify, with the rest of Knight’s EP, Spacetime, from May 17th.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Ride the waves of neo-soul transcendence in Livvy Clarke’s artfully arcane release, Love Letter

Livvy Clarke

What Radiohead is to art rock, Livvy Clarke is to neo-soul; the dreamy zeal within the artfully composed complex time signatures in her latest single, Love Letter, allows the release to defy gravity as it transcends through installations of endlessly ascending cultivation, guided by her arcane vocal range.

With this single, the singer-songwriter who has been likened to her heroines, Angie Stone, India Arie and Tracy Chapman, proved that the most powerful love letter you can ever write is a love letter to yourself after overcoming adversity with enough gratitude and tenacity that you can celebrate still being here.

Love Letter is by no means an affecting exception. Livvy Clarke’s evocative repertoire cages swathes of singles which evoke emotion and bare her soul. By always using personal events as thematic underpinnings in her releases, authenticity and sincerity are always guaranteed.

Her sophomore single, Enough, covered the tragedy of saying goodbye to her mother; watching her daughter become disabled to the point of nearly saying another heart-wrenching goodbye convinced Livvy Clarke of the necessity of writing for catharsis.

Her latest single, co-written with renowned songwriter, arranger and producer, Julian Hinton, (Stormzy, Seal, Rod Stewart) captures Clarke in her free spirit era, unshackled by the weight of monumental grief and strife; it is a testament to the fortitude of the human spirit which lies within us all.

Love Letter will be available to stream on all major platforms from May 16th.

Find your preferred way to listen on Livvy Clarke’s official website.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Awakening to Bella Gate: ‘Sleepwalking’ Melds Classic and Contemporary with Masterful Artistry

If you’re still sleeping on the breakthrough UK singer-songwriter, Bella Gate, her revolutionary approach to power balladry exhibited in her latest single, Sleepwalking, will prise your heart and soul open to her immensely affecting artistry.

The classic songwriting style is enough to slip you back into the 70s before the Florence and the Machine artful touches pull you right back to modernity as Bella Gate’s vocals channel the spirituality of Stevie Nicks and the deep resonant timbre of Adele, with all the emotive authenticity to boot.

While looking back on chapters of teenage love and self-discovery, most will shudder at the naivety; Bella Gate is viscerally living through the torment within Sleepwalking; vicariously join her as the pop-rock piano keys dance beneath her endlessly ascending vocal register as they spill the agony in a retrospective call for clarity.

With plenty more singles in the pipeline for 2024, the 23-year-old Edinburgh/London residing artist is more than worth a spot on your radar. If she’s esteemed enough to have her debut LP mastered at Abbey Road Studios by Geoff Pesche, she, and her talent in bringing a fresh and innovative vibe to the industry, is one to watch.

Sleepwalking was officially released on April 26th; stream the single on Spotify now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Entwine with Alba James’s folk-pop reverie, You Belong to Me

In their latest single, You Belong to Me, singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Alba James equally exhibited their profound connection to music and nature. Hitting play opens a doorway to a portal of fantasy, constructed by a mind attuned to folk-tale reverie; in the same vein as Cosmo Sheldrake, James rhythmically renders naturalism into her productions, which also tap into the enduring appeal of Dodie and Sufjan Stevens.

Though the title of the single implies possession, the free-spirited energy that breezes throughout the production with the retrospection of affection acts as an unexpected contradiction. James’ arcanely serene vocal lines drift through the organic layers of instrumentation attesting to how integral giving room to breathe is in a world full of confines.

Despite their relatively fresh innings in the music industry, the French Sweden-residing folk-pop troubadour allowed their aural talents to blossom from a young age before releasing their debut single, One in a Million, in 2020. Since then, they’ve shared 13 singles and their critically acclaimed EP, Bedroom Walls ahead of You Belong to Me. Even though nothing is off lyrical limits, themes of ancient mythology, queer love and nature are the cornerstone of the artist’s inspiration.

The next time you feel the need to touch grass, just tune into her discography instead.

Stream the official music video for You Belong to Me which premiered on May 7th via YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Experience the intimate opulence of Jonathan Thomas Maiocco’s cinematic pop ‘Heaven’

Jonathan Thomas Maiocco’s latest single, Heaven, is a cinematic pop production far too arcane to dissect; each element converges and creates a divine intervention of vulnerability, exhibited with aching sincerity, thematic intensity, and profound artistry.

The distinction within his harmonic inflections, his ability to come across as the virtuoso next door and the progressive ingenuity of Heaven ensures the single reaches the epitome of striking an emotional chord.

Using the afterlife as a parable for the degree of separation following the dissolution of a relationship that leaves you feeling beneath your former significant other is a striking ode to the artist’s ability to tune into meta phenomena to bring profound meaning to the most tormenting aspects of our mortal coil.

Heaven is the ultimate paradox for the way Jonathan Thomas Maiocco fuses chamber pop opulence and drama with the intimacy of introspection with neither aspect diminished by the gravity of the other. The Atlanta-born singer, songwriter and producer’s strong foundation in music composition evidently culminated in this expansive tour de force.

He’s come a long way from his Christian music beginnings to producing for the Grammy-Award-winning artist for KING & COUNTRY to releasing his debut in 2019. After moving to LA in 2020, Jonathan Thomas Maiocco has written for hit Netflix and ABC shows, including Russian Doll and Carol and the End of the World. Yet, if you tune into his new album, Religious Trauma Syndrome, you’ll find that’s his biggest achievement so far. It’s stunning enough to simultaneously tear your soul apart and lead you to nirvana.

Heaven was officially released on the 29th of April; stream the single on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

The sands of time slip away in Jeff Batson’s transmission of Americana-tinged college radio rock, End of the Grains

The feel-good fervour in Jeff Batson’s latest single, End of the Grains, allows you to imagine a parallel universe where Slash turns his iconic riffs to quintessentially uplifting college radio rock which effervesces with full-bodied and finessed to the nth-degree twangs of Americana.

The sentimentality within this sticky-sweet reminder of our mortality rings with immense sincerity, allowing the warmth-infused waves to crash over you as you catch the Nashville-based star’s indomitable lust for life. If you take each one of the mantras rhythmically laid out in the uplifting anthem, your life will start to feel like a utopia before the outro comes around and compels you to dive back into the melodically enriching tour de force.

Virtuoso may be a word that gets banded around a little too readily in the music industry, but Jeff Batson is a rare artist who warrants it with his mettle, which led to a Grammy nomination for writing the chart-topping single, The Rock, for fellow country star, Tracy Lawrence.

Batson’s career has been an endless series of triumphs, from sharing stages with Hank Williams Jr, Tracy Byrd, and Collin Raye to performing on TNN’s Prime Time Country show. With a presence that could light up any room, he deserves to be championed to the end of the earth.

Stream End of the Grains on Spotify now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast