Browsing Tag


The Freaky Friday Jailhouse Gang filled groove pockets with raucous rock licks in ‘Benign Lion’

As you can probably gather from their moniker, The Freaky Friday Jailhouse Gang is far from your average RnB ensemble. Their seminal single, Benign Lion, is a riot of funk and foot-stompin flavour, driven by the fiery vocal lines of Lorena Valta.

Valta knows just how to instil raucous rock elements into the groove pockets that are deep enough to leave the Grand Canyon green with cavernous envy. Adding to the eccentricity of the Austrian outfit are the layers of blues, which pay homage to the roots before embedding them in an amalgam that could only have been alchemised by The Freaky Friday Jailhouse Gang.

The serious superlative talent is one thing, but the evident fact that the powerhouse, which has kept the cogs turning since the early 2010s, doesn’t take themselves too seriously is quite another. There’s an undeniable sense that the Gang benefit from their feel-good euphonics as much as their fans.

Benign Lion is now available to stream on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Florian Hamela

What is it that makes a virtuoso? I think for most of us we tend to think of those musicians who can play inhumanly fast passages of the most difficult pieces ever composed. I heard Issak Stern say that a virtuoso was someone who could “do anything.” I really liked that definition – but it begs the question: just because you can do anything, does that mean you should?

And that leads me to Florian Hamela, a gifted guitarist who is, for my money, every bit a virtuoso even though his piece “Ebb and Flow” has a more relaxed and melodic vibe dispensing with flashy overly complex acrobatics that is the hallmark of so much electric guitar music. “Ebb and Flow” rather, has a deep cinematic feel – there is a vastness to the work that makes it sound “big” but elegantly simple at the same time. The piece itself uses a slightly distorted tone on the instrument (opening with a clean sounding arpeggio), once the theme lands we’re treated to a Major-One/Minor-Four pattern which is always satisfying.

Another thing I admire about Hamela is his sense of humour. His Instagram moniker is “youraverageguitarist” giving us the feeling that he doesn’t think he’s anything special. Here you can see images of him in the studio and on stage – it seems he is quite the active performer. All humbleness aside, I can say wholeheartedly that “Ebb and Flow” is anything but average and well worth the listen.

Dooplex proves that patience is a virtue with his exploratively eclectic electronica release, It Will Click

When he’s not composing film scores for shorts and feature films, the independent eclectic electronica artist and producer Dooplex is lacing the airwaves with Cubase 12-crafted soundscapes. His latest single, It Will Click, delivers the instrumental affirmation that happiness isn’t something to be chased; it comes to those who know that patience is a virtue.

What starts as an ambient tentative meander breaks into a breakbeat exploration, guided by tropic percussion that is sure to leave serotonin firing between your synapses. The short and sweet release follows his hit remix of Stay Alive, which amassed Dooplex 230,000 streams on SoundCloud alone. On the basis of It Will Click alone, future viral fame is undoubtedly in the artist’s future again.

It Will Click is now available to stream on SoundCloud.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Fleming is concerned that he hasn’t figured it out yet on ‘Mind Tricks’

Feeling like he is presently stuck in an incoherent vortex while others are flying free to follow their dreams, Fleming displays incredible vocals that might take you to a higher place on his latest single, ‘Mind Tricks‘.

Fleming is a Vienna, Austria-based indie alternative singer-songwriter and music producer who only seems to be improving continuously while his perspective evolves throughout time.

Flicking through his brother’s CD collection after he had left home, Alex Hofbauer discovered a love for US Hip hop which led to a mind-altering discovery on the other side of the Atlantic with Massive Attack’s fusion of Hip hop and electronic music.” ~ Fleming

Sung with a splendid velocity that sweeps you off your feet and takes you right inside this excellent story of sensing that everyone around you is winning as you keep on struggling, Fleming sends us to a world overindulged with severe frustration that so many can certainly relate to on this chaotic planet.

Aligning himself sonically with artists such as Blood Orange and Childish Gambino, Fleming has arrived with grooves-a-plenty and a slow-burning instrumental strut that sits beautifully between cold piano tones and warmer, more off-kilter electronic textures.” ~ Fleming

Mind Tricks‘ from Stadl-Paura, Austria-born indie alternative singer-songwriter, pianist and music producer Fleming is a soundtrack to so many of our lives right now as we look above for inspiration. With the world so confusing and packed with so many options that could take you down to a treacherous cave in an instant, this is that reminder that figuring it all out will come eventually. Taking time to get on the right path, is the key to all success after all.

Listen up to this new single on Spotify and see more travels on IG.

Reviewed by Llewelyn Screen

Those Peaceful Travels: Magnus Josefsson is authentically introspective on ‘Jimmy’s House’

After concluding that it was time to drop his debut album after many years of deep thoughtful planning, Magnus Josefsson used all the experience gained from previous mixtapes with his lead single that will have you jumping for joy on ‘Jimmy’s House‘.

Magnus Josefsson is a brilliant Vienna, Austria and Fröseke, Sweden-based dreamy instrumental solo artist and music producer.

There is so much to lather in splendidly here from a kind soul who is ready to get his music out to the world, as he projects wonderous soundscapes of a higher echelon than most of us mere mortals can even fathom. The musicianship is so tight you might need a cold glass of water to calm down, as there is so much to take in here. From the catchy riffs to the mind-bending soulful ambience, this is just excellent the whole way through.

Jimmy’s House‘ from the highly efficient Vienna and Fröseke-based top-notch instrumental solo artist and music producer Magnus Josefsson, is such a calming single which seems to crystalize in your psyche and take you to places you can only see in your dreams. Each second has been made with such love and ultimate affection, from an artist who takes you on a fascinating journey to a new world of love.

Hear this lovely new single on Soundcloud and check out the IG music page.

Reviewed by Llewelyn Screen

Don’t Spill: Synesthetic Ivo brings his unique tea-filled wonderland in full force on ‘Stop Sakka’

Taken off his highly anticipated new album ‘Live at KallmanBoom‘, Synesthetic Ivo spills the tea everywhere and there is lots of innocent cutlery flying all over the place on one of the most mind-blowing tracks of 2021 called ‘Stop Sakka‘.

Vincent Pongracz aka Synesthetic Ivo, is a Vienna, Austria-based indie composer/clarinet player/neodada rapper and video producer.

The eccentric fictional character Synesthetic Ivo is played by the Austrian jazz musician and composer Vincent Pongrácz. Dadaistic raps and invented words which celebrate a modern musical nihilism in an outlandish and humorous manner are Synesthetic Ivo’s trademark.” ~ Synesthetic Ivo

He raps fluidly with such a wonderfully unique style which has your head bobbing and your feet tapping in unadulterated delight. This is the type of track that leaves your mouth open in wonder due to its dizzying creativity – his rare style is magnificently unorthodox and maze-like in delivery – as he swarms the mic like a hungry bee ready to be frenetically fed.

Without compromises he creates an audio-visual work of art that moves between David Lynch, J-Dilla, Fear
and Loathing in Las Vegas und Dadaism.” ~ Synesthetic Ivo

Stop Sakka‘ from the multi-talented Vienna, Austria-based video producer/rapper Synesthetic Ivo, is that terrifically charged release you put on loud, and tell your mates about. He displays a supreme ability to grab your attention beyond normal imagination – and with such a clever visual backing – this is a real underground gem to open your mind. Just don’t spill the tea.

See this new music video on YouTube and check out his IG music page.

Reviewed by Llewelyn Screen

Austrian singer Maddy Rose stuns with exquisite video for ”In A Better Place”

Austrian singer-songwriter and pianist Maddy Rose is an optimist and a wonderful talent. You can feel that she is practically busting to perform live again. This is the voice of a real soul that loves singing. There is no ego here and the music is pure and untainted. I really like how ”In A Better Place” is so mellow and the video lives up to expectations and more.

The Vienna based songstress is in fine form on ”In A Better Place” and Maddy Rose feels like she is ready for the next step in her career. She is grateful for playing live before and I feel like she will want to be travelling and performing live all over the world. She is ready and with songs like this, the world is her oyster.

With the late great Amy Winehouse, Carol King and current legend Adele as influences, you can hear the vocals of Soul and that pure Jazzy R&B that enters your ears and you just smile. Maddy Rose has a Jazz style that fuses so many genres in one that will resonate with millions all over the globe.

Stream this stunning song here on YouTube.

Find out more here on Facebook.

Reviewed by Llewelyn Screen

Cafe Ena is determined to love again with ”Make Room”

Getting into that mental space to love again can be a very difficult and traumatic time. Feeling love is a rejuvenating experience and one that we all need to have. On the other hand, you have been let down before so are understandably nervous to take that plunge again.

Austrian born singer-songwriter Cafe Ena has just released a dark indie blue song called ”Make Room” and takes us through her journey to her current place, so that she can find her deserved peace and happiness.

Verena Bachinger aka Cafe Ena, is currently based in stunning Lisbon in Portugal. She has traveled around the world and has incredible stories to tell us all. Her new EP, the aptly named, “Locked Spaces“, is set for release so it’s been a productive time in quarantine for the tremendously talented singer-songwriter.

”Make Room” is a self reflective & haunting memory from the fantastically honest Cafe Ena. She draws us into her bleak picture with dark and moody melodies, never letting us go. She is striving to love again and breakout of her locked up room and heart, flirting with the idea and we wonder if she succeeds or not.

Stream this excellent song on SoundCloud.

Review by Llewelyn Screen

A&R Factory Present: Hunger

Hailing from the idyllic suburbs of Vienna, Austria, electronic pop/rock band HUNGER first formed in early 2014. Coming off of the success of their band FDTF, childhood friends Daniel Rumpel and Johannes Herbst approached long-term fellow and vocalist Lucas Fendrich with the intention of creating a truly dark and cinematic sound.

In the beginning, the trio was meant to be a songwriting collective focused on epic songs that provoke an immediate, specific feeling within a listener. Standard song structures and melodies were disregarded in favor of the tone and evocation of the music. Perspectives shifted as soon as the band went into studio with British producer Dan Weller in the fall of 2014. The trio couldn’t deny their band roots and ended up with a vast, dark, cinematic sound – and the formation of HUNGER.

HUNGER’s sound is the result of three very different, yet complimentary minds. Although it took time to define their musical direction, the three band mates were able to use their differences to come up with a unique vision in which they were all comfortable and confident. Each member of the trio brings something distinctive to the overall collective.

The band constantly discusses and adjusts the band’s direction – the song concepts, sound, branding, images, videos, and artwork. Each small aspect makes up a larger vision, and each member of the trio has their own place in the process. Process has no place without inspiration. Their sound is primarily art and story driven. Each song stems from a particular concept, which affects the mood, sound and lyrics of the finished piece.

In order to create the right atmosphere for their first record, the band used a small home-studio in an old house in the hills outside of Vienna. The house sits directly in the woods and made its own impression on their first album.

In 2015 the trio decided to relocate to LA, where the band was signed. December 2015 will see the release of HUNGER’s first single, Gravity. Gravity is the second story in a trilogy of three connected music videos. Though it was difficult for Daniel, Johannes and Lucas to choose their first single – “We just had the feeling that this story and this track is the right thing to release first. This song is very special to us, it is very poppy but at the same time super dark, epic and painful…this song represents the whole project.”

The song was, listed on Spotify´s NMF Playlist and was recently featured on Netflix’ new TV show ’13 Reasons Why’.

A&R Factory Present: Viviola

Often the beauty of the independent music scene is just how remarkably eclectic and bizarre it has a tendency to be. Last week, a rising duo who calls themselves Viviola released a new single, ‘Flesh,’ that perfectly embodies that side of the indie music community. Self-described as “epic, ecclesiastical, erotic, electro,” Viviola’s music is certainly quite unique unto itself. Is ‘Flesh’ a single worth picking up? Let’s find out.

Viviola definitely hasn’t boxed themselves into a specific corner with their music style. It has pop influence, yes, but it’s heavily layered in electronic influence. Consisting of Viktoria Schöffl and Mario Wienerroither, the duo lives and breathes through Schöffl’s lead vocals. Her soft musings are the undeniable centerpiece of ‘Flesh,’ and her delicate, vulnerable delivery makes the song particularly special.

The lyricism of ‘Flesh’ does border into the erotic, as Schöffl croons about bodies becoming “matching blocks” when they connect. It’s tasteful, though, and there’s an artistry to the intimate lyricism at play here. Similarly, the duo’s stunningly shot music video complements the poignancy of the single even further. The video for ‘Flesh’ is one of the best music videos in the indie scene thus far this year; it’s very well shot and edited.

As Viviola reaches the peak of intensity on ‘Flesh,’ the listener is met with a masterful soundscape of sweeping synthesizers and heart-pounding electronic beats. ‘Flesh’ is a wonderfully produced track, certainly worth taking notice of amidst a sea of indie electro-pop artists with far more sketchy and poorly executed compositions.

Every element of ‘Flesh’ also feels meticulously organized, from Schöffl’s vocals that slowly grow in intensity to the occasional, anthemic choral harmonies the accent her in the middle of the track at the two minute mark. The music video clearly has some depth, too, seemingly showcasing Schöffl being cleansed both literally and metaphorically, naked in the shower.

There’s a lot of pop music with electronic stylings in the indie scene. It’s one of the most popular subgenres. Viviola have done something very difficult with their new single, though. They’ve created an entry in that part of the scene that actually feels fresh and different. That’s an accomplishment worth lauding.

Words By Brett David Stewart