Beware of Trains stepped out of an anachronistic music box and onto the airwaves to share the histrionically ornate single, Forever Home, which carries all the glamour of the West End and all the alternative allure of the Legendary Pink Dots and Jason Webley.
The chamber pop orchestration unravels as a snow-capped fairy tale of a festive single; the all-bells and no whistles production takes the ordinary Christmas single and enchants it to the nth degree.
The origin of the single stems back to 2019 when Beware of Trains performed ‘A Kitmas Concert’ at Bradford Cathedral with members of Opera North to raise funds for Allerton Cat Rescue. Inspired by the charity’s slogan, ‘Helping cats and kittens find their furever home’, songwriter, Leighton Jones wanted to explore the sense of longing and belonging conjured by the phrase. If there’s any time of the year when the need to belong reaches its wistful peak, it is the festive holidays. If you can relate, prepare for the scintillating resonance and grab a few tissues. It hits harder than the end of Raymond Brigg’s symphonic poem, the Snowman.
In their own words:
“Forever Home is a symphonic festive tale that transports us into a snow globe and whisks us away through snowy Yorkshire fields and skies, revelling in the nostalgic sense of homecoming the festive season brings. But the song is also tinged with bittersweet melancholy, reflecting on the passing years and sadness of saying goodbye to the people and places we love and hold dear.”
Forever Home was officially released on November 24th; stream it on SoundCloud.
For her latest single, Dancing on Roses, the indie pop enchantress, Linn Willner, melodically pulled on the parallels between blossoming naturalism and the early days of relationships, where we can’t see the thorns for the petals.
The orchestral strings in the indie chamber pop score carved a cinematically immersive atmosphere that evokes notions of romanticism while spurring the listener to remove their rose-tinted glasses and view the full kaleidoscope of betrayal-laden complexity when exploring love and human connection. Life will always find a way to strip away your naivety; it is better to pull back the layers with piano pop expositions on the highs and lows of relationships, which portray vulnerability as a strength.
The 22-year-old Swedish singer-songwriter became an icon of our enlightened times with Dancing on Roses. Beyond her beguilingly evocative vocal lines and command over minor piano keys, she’s at the vanguard of emotionally intelligent pop.
Dancing on Roses will debut on the 26th of September; stream it on Spotify.
Silence the maleficence of your inner critic with the latest interstellar indie space pop escapade, Think Gently of Yourself, from Dream Optimist. If Do You Realize by The Flaming Lips never fails to pull at your heartstrings and stir your soul with unabashed positivity, the same viscerally sweet reaction awaits when you hit play on the seminal single from Dream Optimist’s 15-track LP, Seven Day Love Challenge.
Atop the twinkling Grandaddy-esque keys and around the chamber strings, the questioning and pervasive with doubt lyricism leads you on an affirming odyssey of a journey through the cosmos, with the consolingly compassionate vocals acting as a star-roving guide.
The Oakland, CA-residing songwriter and composer, frequently voyages between synthpop, bedroom pop, chamber pop and a myriad of other genres when penning his hits for his ‘low head count collective’. Before breaking into song crafting for the airwaves, the collective’s head honcho, David Marc Siegel, honed his talents in art-punk outfits and as a composer for ad music, theatre music, musical theatre, and short films, which goes a fair way in explaining how he settled on his cinematically spirited sound that will take you as high as the transcendent register on the vocal harmonies.
Stream Think Gently of Yourself by heading over to Spotify.
World-class singer-songwriter and composer Emily Manuel is beautifully baroque in her latest orchestral single, Live Forever. The chamber strings lend themselves effortlessly to the artfully timeless timbre of her silkily demure vocal lines as they explore the theme of perpetual legacy.
After Paul Simon revealed the power of lyricism to Manuel, the Denver-based artist orchestrated her distinctive indie chamber sonic signature, which carries the influence of classical scores, the deconstructed expression of jazz and a touch of Eastern flavour.
So far in her career, Manuel has spilt her sound into theatres, olive groves, and taverns. Her live performance highlight was sharing the stage with the icon Jamie Cullen. Although, evidently, he wouldn’t have been the only icon on stage that night.
Live Forever was officially released on February 3rd. Hear it on Spotify.
Bridging the gaps between Glen Hansard, James Yorkston and Richard Hawley, The London-based singer-songwriter, Layman.TV released his latest ethereal indie folk single, Harmony Eternal.
The flourishing chamber strings against his harmonised spoken word reflections on nature and all the parallels they create within our lives pull together to create a poetically celestial sensory experience in Harmony Eternal. It is almost enough to guilt trip you for not sharing the same romantic lust for life. I say almost; the sublime appreciation for natural phenomena becomes infectious. Especially when the nuanced rock guitars start to bolster the passion in the otherwise graciously otherworldly soundscape.
Harmony Eternal is now available to stream on Spotify.
While many artists desperately wrestled with their creativity during the first lockdown only to reveal trite lyricism the performer, composer, multi-instrumentalist and baroquely phenomenal recording artist, Elisa Winter foresaw the new normal before the modern plague was on our door.
Finally, her debut album, Summer and Smoke, which was officially released on Summer Solstice 2022, is here to spill orchestrally apocalyptic post-grunge resonance. The LP tracks across the tensions between truth, reality and gaslighting, with the engrossingly stunning highlight, Summer Spent Dreaming.
Lush yet tumultuous. Visceral yet encompassing the detachment we all felt in some capacity, Summer Spent Dreaming is the most authentic aural depiction of the frustration and entropy I’ve heard yet.
Everything changed, in a way it is almost impossible to put in words. I say almost because Elisa Winter discernibly succeeded with “speak to me please, what has happened to you? Searching for you in your eyes, you won’t let me in.” There’s been a disconnect that we’ve kept our heads in the sand about. Thankfully, Elisa Winter is here to vindicate the confusion in our alien relationship with reality and each other.
Elisa Winter’s latest album, Summer and Smoke, is now available to stream via Spotify.
Ahead of the release of his fifth 100% DIY album, Hurts, the alt-indie British singer-songwriter, OneNamedPeter, has given us a teaser by letting us taste the cosmic pop textures in the bitter-sweet title single.
If you took Prince’s solos, Elliott Smith’s raw songwriting style, the dreamy chamber pop style of Daughter, the spacey gravity of Bowie and threw them into an aural cocktail with orchestral motifs to boot, it would pour just like the intoxicating soundscape, Hurts.
Nothing about the high-fidelity production feels less than professional. OneNamedPeter knows just how to conjure enough alchemy to wrap around his lyricism that explores the pleasure and pain connection.
Hurts is one of those tragically rare releases that you immediately know you’ll want to dive into time and time again. We’re stoked to hear how the LP ensues after the title-single set such a blissful and accordant tone.
Hurts will officially release on March 4th, 2022. You can check it out for yourselves by heading over to SoundCloud.
The South London songwriter and writer, Joseph Lothian, has recently released his sophomore album, which is a continuation of the wild and verdant chamber pop soundscapes in his 2020 debut album, Wilderness Music.
Wilderness Music Continued (Rain, Fire), is a meditatively artful infusion of electronic folk, indie and alt-pop which focuses on the act of songwriting, with a view to how it creates comfort and value in otherwise inhospitable environments. It’s hard to argue with that sentiment. Without the icons that have defined the culture in the UK, how disparate would our streets feel? How many outliers would know nothing of experimental expression or know how it feels to find their mindset tribe?
The standout single, Glacial and Spa, is just as evocative as an Angel Olsen release with the vibrato on the vocal. Yet, within the lush textures of the chamber pop single, there’s a nuanced reminder of our roots and the fact that we were never really supposed to endure post-industrialised isolation.
Joseph Lothian’s sophomore album is now available to stream on Spotify.
Following on from the success of their debut album, ‘Bread & Circuses’, Glasgow-hailing, London-residing alternative artist, Crawford Mack has lavished the airwaves with their chamber pop single, ‘The Art of Losing You’.
With hauntingly poetic lyrics falling into the smoothly sparse production which teases nuances of jazz and folk, Crawford Mack exhibits an inimitable style, but more importantly, he doesn’t fail to appeal to the softer and more sentimental side of the human condition. Any fans of Father John Misty, Benjamin Clementine and Gabriel Kahane will want to delve in.
The single marks a new chapter for Crawford Mack who has shared stages with the likes of The Paper Kites, Damien Dempsey and Tom Walker. It’s a page-turner. Get him on your radar.
The Art of Losing You is now available to stream via Spotify.
Chamber Pop that illuminates: Heren Wolf’s ‘Far‘ is a spectacular song filled with warmth and deep energies that filters into our hearts.
Heren Wolf is an Italian pop singer-songwriter based in London who has a voice that pieces through you, you can feel the raw beautif and how incredibly well this song has been constructed.
‘The imagery of the‘womb’, representing the safe and primordial place, in which pain hasn’t yet left its mark.’- Heren Wolf
With a soothing start that has stunning piano riffs that are so touching and encapsulates how safe the world should be. After making a fresh move to London, this is all about a new times. Taking the time to heal from all that happened in the past is key, moving on is even better as it enables you to start again. New friends and new memories.
Heren Wolf’s ‘Far‘ is such a masterpiece, the layers here are so magnificently meshed together and you can’t help but appreciate this new song. Music like this doesn’t appear all the time and this is a track that needs to be hear and played to get that extra bit of beauty back in our lives.