Browsing Tag


Behold Andy Smythe’s Orchestrally Lush Vignette of a Homeward Bound Beatnik, Prodigal Son

‘Prodigal Son’ is the latest baroque folk-rock single from the psychedelically captivating singer-songwriter, producer and arranger, Andy Smythe, who transcended the Bowie and Beatles assimilators with his orchestrally lush vignette of a homeward-bound beatnik after a soul-seeking journey.

Anyone who has ever searched for tangible evidence of an entity or philosophy which contextualises reality while grasping and affirming inner essence will feel the force of a fist full of resonance while Prodigal Son is narratively unfolding under the duress of the London-based singer-songwriter’s magnetic with soul vocal lines.

There’s no overstating the sharpness of the songwriting chops or the compelling Buckley-esque 4-octave warmth in Andy Smythe’s vocal lines. After cutting his teeth for the past 20 years as a songsmith, Smythe could give Nosferatu a run for his money with his quintessentially quirky sonic signature which has garnered rave reviews on both sides of the pond.

Prodigal Son will hit the airwaves on June 23. Hear it first on SoundCloud.

Review by Amelia Vandergast


The formidable queen of orchestral indie, Tabitha Booth, set a baroque score in her single, Silent Lucidity

Coming to you live from Cocoon Studios, Tabitha Booth set a baroque score in her evocatively artful cover of Queensrÿche’s hit 90s song, Silent Lucidity. The chamber strings carve through the indie artist’s neo-classic class, which effortlessly resonates through her Tori Amos-ESQUE vocal lines and the tension-fraught arrangements that stands as a testament to her ability to weave an intricate and picturesque narrative.

Amanda Palmer may be the ‘Girl Anachronism’, but Tabitha Booth established herself as the formidable queen of orchestral indie after unveiling the disquiet alchemy in Silent Lucidity. We are stoked to see her back on the airwaves after the reprieve that followed her 2020 single, Curiosity. Here’s to hoping that there’s plenty more poignantly pensive alchemy lingering in the pipeline.

The live recording of Silent Lucidity is now available to stream on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Trip-hop goes baroque in Lakitah’s latest bullet to the monocultural mould, The Fall ft. EvenstAr

Lose yourself in the fantastical atmosphere of Lakitah’s latest single, The Fall, featuring EvenstAr; the baroquely histrionic brand of trip-hop melodically works to create a mise en scene of isolation and introspection.

The international collaboration project, led by vocalist and guitarist Dominika Zdrodowski, started as a lockdown-born endeavour, but as the struggle for hope is still as endemic as it was when we were commanded to keep distance between each other, and just as insular in our alienation, the project still thrives. You only need to slip into the artful opulence of the Fall to affirm that for yourselves.

The featuring artist EvenstAr takes influence from trip-hop acts, such as Portishead and Massive Attack; put against the monocultural-mould smashing beguile laid out by Lakitah, The Fall is an Avant-Garde emblem you will want to treasure for as long as you want to keep hold of your sanity.

Stream EvenstAr on YouTube now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Paper White and the Lake goes for baroque in their single, My Love, ft. Teresa Ann & Nicole Limle

For their standout single, My Love, the up-and-coming Avant-Garde originator Paper White and the Lake collaborated with Teresa Ann & Nicole Limle to create a striking piano-led score that will easily arrest any Evelyn-Evelyn and the Legendary Pink Dots fans.

The theatrically baroque piano keys and Brian Viglione-style percussion fuse in absolute synergy with the beguile of the art-house chanteuse vocals, which implant aching amorous soul into the soundscape that resonates with a touch of coldness and isolation.

My Love efficaciously proves that nothing can rival the presence of love, and nothing can be as inhospitable as a world without it. To say that you will feel all of the emotion as My Love unfurls around the reprise of “you don’t want my love” is far from a mascara-ruining understatement.

Stream My Love on YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Unwanted Guest morbidly went for baroque in their debut album, Grave Metallum

With an intro consisting of news broadcasters announcing the deaths Cobain and Winehouse, Unwanted Guest certainly knew how to make an instant impression with the title single to their debut album, Grave Metallum.

The morbidly carnivalesque hard rock hit puts a baroque spin on grunge while carrying reminiscences to Fable Cry and Abney Park around percussion that would make Mudhoney dizzy, the frenetic bounce of the basslines and doom-harbingering guitars.

Yet, the true beauty in the title lies in the nuanced way Unwanted Guest present our ‘icons’ as the line-up in a freakshow that we voyeuristically watch in the hope we see their rise AND fall. With the media frenzy that whipped around Taylor Hawkins this month, Unwanted Guest was definitely onto something.

Grave Metallum was officially released on March 21st. It is now available to stream on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

BexX feat. Lady Nade remind us that optimism isn’t cancelled with ‘All That You Dream’

For their latest single, ‘All That You Dream’, Bristol, UK-hailing artist BexX teamed up with Lady Nade and went bolder than ever with their ‘Genrefluid’ sound. Non-conformity has never sounded more soulful.

Jazzy, sultry, eclectic, and infinitely sublime are all apt adjectives to allude to the dynamic mesmerism on offer in All That You Dream, but discernibly, the single offers much more than words alone ever could. The theatrically baroque soundscape conjures plenty of imagery as it invites the listener to cast away nihilism and pessimism when taking the next step. As plenty of people are now in the position of not having much of a choice in taking change in their stride, there’s no danger of over-exaggerating how essential All That You Dream is.

The humbly artful exhibition of mould-breaking talent provides 4:32-absolving minutes of escapism which simultaneously reassures you that optimism isn’t cancelled.

You can check out All That You Dream via Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Escape the 21st-century with Dawn of the Squid’s ardently archaic single ‘Barking up the Wrong Tree’

Dawn of the Squid’s debut album ‘Hubris’ is an explosion of archaic and theatrical ingenuity. If Frank Turner and Shakespeare had an aural lovechild, it would undoubtedly be reminiscent of the standout single ‘Barking Up the Wrong Tree’

With a baroque feel to the Alt Folk single, the soundscape catapults you from this crushingly weird 21st century into a decadent past by projecting you through the resounding strength in the eccentric London-based artist’s unfalteringly fierce Punk crooning.

Any fans of Amanda Palmer, Tim Minchin, Emilie Autumn and Fable Cry will definitely want to indulge.

You can check out Dawn of the Squid’s album Hubris for yourselves by heading over to Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Medieval Baebes bring the baroque with their tenth album ‘Prayers Of The Rosary’

After a career spanning 25 years Medieval Baebes return with this, their tenth album, and the first to feature solely original compositions. Recorded during the ‘wilderness months’ of a pandemic-lockdowned 2020, in the spiritual, legend-shrouded lodestone of Glastonbury, the twelve tracks on ‘Prayers Of The Rosary’ stylishly mix Christian liturgical plainsong with the Latin prayers of the rosary of the album’s title.

It’s a stunning piece of work. Beautiful, haunting vocal performances mix with traditional instruments such as lyres, ouds, and Chinese pipa, sitting alongside church bells, field-recorded nature sounds, and unusual additions such as bagpipes and even a hurdy gurdy. Composed and produced by founding member Katharine Blake and featuring the additional performances of multi-instrumentalists Michael J York (The Utopia Strong, Coil, Teleplasmiste) and Charlie Cawood (Anathema, Lost Crowns, Knifeworld), ‘Prayers Of The Rosary’ is at once meditative and uplifting, spiritual yet psychedelic, introspective yet buoyant. In a world of twenty-second soundbites, social media engagement analytics, and disposable everything, ‘Prayers Of The Rosary’ might just be the antidote we didn’t realise we needed all along.

‘Prayers Of The Rosary’ is available from Bandcamp from the 4th December; Find Medievel Baebes on Facebook and Instagram.

Review by Alex Holmes

Yana – Trapped in a Cage: Arcanely Baroque Celtic Folk

Folk singer-songwriter Yana’s latest single “Trapped in a Cage” is an enchantingly baroque orchestration which pairs cinematically theatrical instrumentals with poetically resonant lyrics.

The archaic soundscape may not be everyone’s cup of tea. But for anyone who finds favour in archaically beguiling singles, you’ll definitely want to make Trapped in a Cage a firm fixture on your playlists.

Since Yana made her debut in 2019 with her single Distant Shore, she’s garnered plenty of acclaim in Ireland and across Europe. With her debut EP due to be released in June 2020, we have no doubt that Yana is one to watch. Even though her Folk roots style is steeped in influence from the past, her lyrics are contemporary enough to ensnare you and lead you into anachronistic escapism.

You can check out Yana’s single Trapped in a Cage for yourselves by heading over to Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Lex Ventura – Baroque And Roll At Its Finest

Imagine if Nick Cave cheered up and embraced latin beats or if Bing Crosby had embraced 60’s surf-pop, quite hard scenarios to picture that’s for sure but Lex Ventura is a hard artist to pin down. I Could Be is a song from another time, a smooth chanteuse delivery put to retro vibes, sailing close to pastiche but full of enough originality and lo-fi excellence that you would be hard pushed to tell if this is someone carrying the torch for those pre-pop times or just some long lost demos from an act which should have been a footnote in the annals history but who somehow missed their moment.

This is baroque and roll at its finest, Jacques Brel reanimated and relocated to the sunnier climes of the Californian coast, as strange as it is beguiling and seemingly so far removed from any modern sound that you are not sure if this is rose-tinted and nostalgia driven or, given the cyclical nature of music, a taste of things to come. But believe me somewhere there is a parallel universe where Lex Ventura is bigger than the Beatles.