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Soul

DNA unveiled the UK RnB debut you don’t want to miss with the dualistically stylistic hit, Love or Let Go

Whether you keep hanging on to a relationship that is showing no lifelines or are too hesitant to let down your barriers, DNA’s alt-indie RnB hit, Love or Let Go, will give you all the permission you need to move forward with no inhibition.

Between the grooves of the Latin guitars and the jarringly immersive electronic aesthetic that rocks turbulence behind the solid backbeat, DNA constructed the perfect platform to sonically visualise the emotional themes of Love or Let Go and carry the weight of his hot and heavy vocal lines.

With his vocal dynamism that shifts effortlessly from Hozier-esque timbres to light pop harmonies to electronically distorted dominance, the UK-based up-and-coming talent ensured that he was more than a new entry in the UK RnB scene; he exhibited himself as an RnB heavyweight right out of the gate. We can’t wait to hear what follows.

Love or Let Go will hit all major streaming platforms on March 22; hear it on SoundCloud first.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Messy Mike – Things Are Crazy: An Alt-Indie Remedy to the Malady of Modernity.

Messy Mike used the cinematic sheen of neo-doo-wop to add transcendent melodic ascendence to his vintage-toned alt-indie rock allegory of how darkness permeates the psyches of us all – regardless of how hard we endeavour to push away the shadows of ennui.

Things Are Crazy goes beyond unravelling as a sonic sign of the times, the kaleidoscopically colourful release that will be a hit with any fans of The Strokes goes one strident step further to deliver vindication and salvation in the same rhythmic breath.

Regardless of how much we know that this dystopia dogs us all, that doesn’t get in the way of bringing our sanity into question; if you can relate, Things Are Crazy will give you all the answers you’re looking for; sift through the layered instrumentals, gentle acoustics and sweeping organs and hone in on the soulfully caressing vocal lines for a remedy to the malady of modernity.

Stream Things Are Crazy on Spotify now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Go down the rabbit hole with TaQuan MonChez’s ode to 80s soul, Wonderland

Start your 80s RnB love story by slipping into TaQuan MonChez’s latest single, ‘Wonderland’, which pours the essence of gospel into the heart of RnB. After honing his skills in a 20-year tenure as a church musician and a self-taught pianist, Wonderland showcases TaQuan’s journey and his ability to construct auditory embraces, capable of enveloping listeners in lush, hazy tones.

The ode to an ethereal kind of love, one that allows the material world to dissolve into insignificance, ensures this emotional theme resounds through each element – especially through his velvety magnetic vocals as they effortlessly ascend into a higher vocal register.

The guitar lines in ‘Wonderland’ are also a standout feature, dancing through the track with a pop and groove that’s infectious, intricate, and definitively 80s. These melodies underpin TaQuan’s vocal prowess, creating a layered and immersive soundscape.

Moreover, ‘Wonderland’ is a showcase of TaQuan MonChez’s exceptional songwriting ability. Each musical element is meticulously woven to create a tapestry that visually and sonically represents the sanctity of transcendent love. The song is a testament to TaQuan’s belief in music that resonates with integrity and decency.

Wonderland was officially released on February 16; stream the single on YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Top supermodel Alana Monteiro brought style to the airwaves with her RnB meets dream-pop hit, Miss No More

Fuse wavy indie dream pop with swathes of contemporary appeal and Lynchian sonic cinematography, bed the synthesis into RnB roots, and you will be left with a hypnotic elixir which pours as deliciously as Alana Monteiro’s single, Miss No More.

The single unravels through the juxtaposition of lyrical vulnerability and the strident reclamation of power following a disempowering relationship that turned sour. The timbres in the track may run smooth, but there’s no putting out the fire Alana Monteiro started with her velvety luxe vocal lines that harness all the rage that is left in the ashes of a relationship that will never allow you to live up to your worth.

It’s a stunning release from the multi-faceted powerhouse of talent; when Alana Monteiro isn’t in the studio, she’s making waves in the fashion industry as a top supermodel who has made her way into the ranks of the top 100 black female models and acting in Emmy-award-winning films. Miss No More is definitive proof that her beauty is more than skin deep; it oozes from her soul into the lush production.

Stream the official lyric video for Miss No More which is slick with Burn Book-esque aesthetics and premiered on March 13 on YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Backwoods Creek delivered the ultimate Southern soul-rock anthem ‘Alright’

Sensing cynicism in the universal waters, Backwoods Creek prescribed a potent dose of optimism with their latest single, ‘Alright’. The refreshing take on bluesy soul-swathed Southern rock played fast and loose with the genre constraints while keeping the instrumental arrangement tight enough to unravel as every rock-inclined muso’s wet dream.

Part lyrical mantra, part musical Tour De Force, the UK-based quintet exhibited ‘Alright’ as a masterclass in balancing raw, overdriven guitars and whiskey-soaked vocals with an undercurrent of hope and redemption. It’s a track that carries the dynamic energy of power pop while remaining true to its bluesy rock and roll roots.

The virtuosic cohesion of the instrumentals showcases their skill and chemistry, honed through years of friendship and collaboration, and you don’t have to buy tickets to their live shows (even though you really should) to witness their infectious energy performance energy; the band’s electrifying aura is perfectly captured in this track.

No one can deny that while life is on a downward trajectory hearing everything will be alright prises ennui out of your perception. This life-affirming hit goes beyond reassurance –  it’s transformative.

Alright will hit the airwaves on March 15; check out the release via the official Backwoods Creek website.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Martin Packwood wrapped his latest jazz fusion, Moonlight in Paris, in the warmth of the Parisian night

Martin Packwood’s latest single, Moonlight in Paris, is a scintillatingly smooth journey through the streets of jazz fusion, where every note feels like a step along the Seine under a starlit sky. This amorous installation unravels as a sensory expedition, wrapped in the warmth of a Parisian night.

Packwood’s guitar work, reminiscent of the bluesy soulfulness of Eric Clapton, intertwines effortlessly with the jazz keys. The bluesy guitar notes, like whispers of a distant love affair, meld with percussive fills that don’t just give the score structure, they fill Moonlight in Paris with anticipation.  Each progression in the track teases the listener not unlike the narrative arc of a classic romance.

The genius of Packwood lies in his ability to draw from a diverse palette of influences. His style, a confluence of Santana’s rhythmic mastery and the improvisational spirit of jazz, makes Moonlight in Paris a track that transcends mere auditory experience. It’s a piece that paints pictures, evoking the filmic aura of a David Lynch creation.

This release, following Packwood’s consistent contributions to the jazz-rock fusion domain, confirms his place as a sculptor of soundscapes rather than just a musician. Moonlight in Paris is a nocturnal stroll through the heart of jazz fusion, leaving listeners with a longing for just one more night in the city of lights.

Moonlight in Paris will officially release on March 15; stream the single on SoundCloud.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Toy Taha – Thrill is Gone: A Fiery Requiem for Lost Love

Following up on her debut LP, EIGHT, the Philadelphia native, Toy Taha confidently veered off RnB’s beaten track with her latest single, Thrill is Gone.

Instrumentally, the moody jazzy foray is reminiscent of what might happen if the Arctic Monkeys took a detour through the heart of RnB territory; the instrumentals melodiously flow, blending genres tied together by a luxe 90s twist, setting a stage for Taha’s voice to explore the emotional aftermath of a fleeting romance.

Taha’s vocal lines weave through the complexities of quick-to-burn passion and being left with the aftermath of deception. Her voice, cultivated from a rich tapestry of influences ranging from Shirley Murdoch to Whitney Houston, scathes with a raw intensity, smouldering with unresolved passion.

Thrill is Gone is a testament to her candid lyrical approach, she navigates the intricate dynamics of love and loss with a narrative depth that’s as compelling as it is relatable, resulting in a fully stylised emotional outpour that anyone in the same position can source catharsis from.

Thrill is Gone was officially released on February 23rd, check it out on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Victorrio came in hot & heavy with his alt-RnB debut, I Would Never

Victorrio’s debut single, I Would Never, marks a compelling entrance into the alt-RnB scene. He came in hot and heavy with the narrative journey which bares his battle scars and weaves through the complexities of romantic turmoil with a finesse that belies his newcomer status.

It’s a genre-defying piece, effortlessly melding elements of stylised soul with a trappy backbeat and pop-inflected production. The brooding effects that add layers of depth and intrigue will undoubtedly resonate with fans of The Weeknd, yet Victorrio carved out his own niche within this familiar territory while exploring the darker side of love. If you’ve ever been burned in ways that leave you perplexed by a romantic partner’s capacity for ruthless malevolence, I Would Never is the ultimate aural salve for heartless iniquity.

To make I Would Never even more affecting, his voice, smooth yet commanding, delivers each line with an alchemic mix of vulnerability and strength and each verse unravels as an intimate vignette. By using his experimentalism as a narrative device which mirrors the track’s tormented thematic elements, I Would Never became haunting and alluring, innovative and introspective in equal measure. Naturally, we can’t wait to hear what follows.

I Would Never was officially released on February 9th; stream the single on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Rokeby’s Cover of What is Love is an Arcane Sermon of Mourning, Desperation and Torment

For his debut single, the London-based up-and-coming artist, Rokeby, proved what difference a minor key can make when he melancholically reinvented the 1993 single, What is Love, which was a flood of euphoric momentum under Haddaway’s dance pop duress.

The acoustic rendering of the single completely recontextualised the lyricism; the minor key piano notes and the gospel-esque soulfully profound vocal harmonies allowed the cover to unravel as an arcane sermon of mourning, desperation and torment. The ethereal production which sees his vocal range defy gravity swims in sincerity, inviting you to get lost in the undercurrents of agony inflicted by the absence of affection or the presence of imperfect love.

By taking inspiration from Hozier, Tom Odell, Bon Iver, Freya Ridings and David Kushner for this track and the rest of his forthcoming EP, which was co-written and produced with Tom Fuller, Rokeby is set to become the UK’s biggest evocateur of 2024.

Rokeby’s debut single was officially released on February 21st; stream the single on Spotify, and keep the artist on your radar for the launch of his debut EP, which will follow in 2024.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Spotlight Feature: London’s Thai chi Rosè embodied empowerment in the elegant serenity of her RnB single, Cumfort

Thai chi Rosè, London’s rising RnB sensation, has outdone herself with her latest single, ‘Cumfort’. The cultural tapestry weaves together the soulful echoes of the ’90s RnB era with the vibrant threads of her British Jamaican heritage, resulting in a masterpiece that resonates with a timeless yet contemporary beat.

‘Cumfort’ is a delicate balance of contrasts. Thai chi Rosè’s voice, soft yet powerful, wraps around the listener, while her British Jamaican accent adds an exotic flair to the track, making it stand out in today’s RnB landscape. It’s this unique blend of cultures and eras that gives ‘Cumfort’ its soul-stirring depth and appeal.

The track’s integration of Patois, while staying firmly rooted in RnB, is nothing short of revolutionary. It’s a bold statement in a genre that often leans towards the conventional. This daring move not only showcases Thai chi Rosè’s versatility as an artist but also her commitment to breaking new ground in the music industry.

For aficionados of RnB legends like Aaliyah, Mini Rippleton, and Adina Howard, ‘Cumfort’ is a refreshing nod to the past, yet it pulses with a modern, innovative spirit. It’s a track that demands to be heard and felt.

Thai chi Rosè’s journey, from hosting stage takeovers at prestigious festivals to her international campaign and TV features, is a testament to her growing influence in the music world. With ‘Cumfort’ and more sultry tracks on the horizon, she is an artist to watch.

Stream Cumfort on Spotify now.

Follow Thai chi Rosè on Instagram.

Review by Amelia Vandergast