Browsing Tag

Dream-Pop

Etherdene – Summer Dreams: An Indietronica Ode to Seasonal Longing

Etherdene’s latest single, ‘Summer Dreams‘, is a masterstroke in indietronica, blending the magnetic allure of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs with the Smiths’ jangle-pop melodies, all while infusing a shoegaze and retro-futuristic electronica reminiscent of Tiny Ghosts.

Since her solo debut in June 2023, Etherdene has been an indomitable force in the music industry. Each release has solidified her place in the hearts of listeners and playlist curators. Her music, an affectingly arresting cocktail of empowering messages and evocative soundscapes, resonates deeply on every conceivable level.

‘Summer Dreams’, released in the heart of February, initially strikes as a paradoxical choice. However, the track’s lyrical yearning for the warmth and sticky-sweet hues of summer, set against the backdrop of the Pacific Northwest’s rainy winters, unifies through the affirmation that we’re all in it together, and now we have the ultimate soundtrack to our unified longing.

We didn’t think there was much scope for improvement from Etherdene’s previous single, You Are My World, but the complexities within Summer Dreams that reveal a new reason to fall head over heels for the single with every listen prove that Etherdene is poised to become an indietronica firebrand in 2024.

Summer Dreams was officially released on February 9th; stream the single on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

NÍNIVE – Aleluya: Celestial Permission to Shed the Weight of Emptiness

After making one of the strongest debuts of 2023, the Ecuadorian Alt-Pop conduit of cinematic experimentalism, NÍNIVE, has returned to the airwaves with her sophomore single, Aleluya, created in collaboration with the world-renowned producer, Enrique Gonzalez Müller.

There’s not just something in the ethereal atmosphere of Aleluya; the intricate complexities within the explorative instrumentals as they oscillate, glitch and melodiously flow are dynamite to the rhythmic senses as they create a beguiling platform for NÍNIVE’s celestial vocal timbre.

As the deeply confessional single professes the weight of internal emptiness, the transcendence within the production is permission to free yourself from that feeling and let light and colour into your soul through resilience, love and awareness of inner beauty. The sonic meditation is the ultimate antidote to the agony of our current era, which makes it so hard to find meaning and fulfilment. We can’t wait to hear what the superlative songstress constructs next.

Aleluya was officially released on February 2nd; stream the single on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Ethan Martin created an open line of communication with passion in his latest dreamy RnB single, Okay, Love

Ethan Martin’s latest single, ‘Okay, Love’, is a soulfully realistic exploration of love’s complexities. This Las Vegas-based R&B artist, reminiscent of Daniel Caesar and Frank Ocean, delved into the intricate emotions of love, fear, and vulnerability in a way that deeply resonates.

The track is a masterful blend of soothing vocals and stirringly ethereal instrumentals, showcasing Martin’s skill in self-producing, mixing, and mastering his work. His unique style draws you into a world where love’s idyllic image is gently unravelled to reveal its more profound, often challenging reality.

‘Okay, Love’ navigates the nuanced terrains of the heart with a rare authenticity. The bassline pulsates through the song, setting a rhythm that complements the dual vocals. These elements together create a dynamic soundscape that reflects the song’s thematic exploration of love’s dual nature – its joys and fears, its light and shadows.

Martin’s lyrical ability is a highlight of the track as he speaks to those who feel the scars of previous relationships, are haunted by their anxious attachments, or simply feel the dread of loss when falling into the arms of another.

As Ethan Martin continues to attract a dedicated fanbase, ‘Okay, Love’ stands as a powerful example of his artistry. For those yet to discover his music, ‘Okay, Love’ is the perfect introduction to Ethan Martin’s world – a world where the soul’s deepest echoes are beautifully brought to life.

Okay, Love will drop on January 26. Stream the single on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

frekld cloud sang a lyrical lullaby in ‘Peter Pan’ ft Jxsie Beats

frekld cloud’s latest single, Peter Pan, featuring Jxsie Beats, is a mesmerising journey through a dreamscape where the boundaries of consciousness blur. This single, a harmonious blend of ambient, videogame-inspired instrumentals and delicate pop vocals, invites listeners into a world where music and the inner trappings of a melancholy mind meld seamlessly.

At 19, frekld cloud has already shown a profound depth in his music by intertwining sound with heartfelt emotion. The lyrical lullaby is a vivid illustration of his journey, evolving from a young artist sharing his creations on YouTube and SoundCloud to an emerging voice on the global stage. His commitment to exploring mental health through music, born from a childhood where expression was a challenge, shines through in Peter Pan’s ambient, videogame-like instrumentals, which cradle the narrative of a reflective mind.

Frekld Cloud’s vocals, both soft and resonant, glide over the dreamscape, painting a picture of emotion and introspection. The lyrics, forthright and poignant, draw listeners into the artist’s psyche, exploring themes of freedom, self-awareness, and the complexities of mental health. We can’t wait to join flekld cloud on his next ethereal journey.

Peter Pan is available to stream on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Etherdene filtered her latest indie dream pop release ‘You Are My World’ through rose-tinted lenses.

In her ethereal alt-indie pop single, You Are My Word, Etherdene captured the transcendence of someone walking into your life and completely redefining reality around the light and colour they use to infuse your perceptions with renewed vibrance. To ground the track in realism, Etherdene used the all-too-relatable fear of rose-tinted glasses being shattered under the realisation of lack of reciprocation.

The ever-ascending melodies within the ardent yet sublimely tender track amplify the sticky-sweet romanticism drifting through the lyricism. Far from your average head-over-heels hit, You Are My World will leave you on a plateau, constructed by tentatively pure poetry which cohesively coalesces with the dreamy melodies that will easily be placed on any playlists featuring Cigarettes After Sex, Sigur Ros, and Beach House.

With over 10k monthly listeners behind her, Etherdene’s trajectory will only be upwards from here on out. Her rapid ascent after her 2023 debut reflects the affecting resonance within her self-expressive self-produced releases.

You Are My World was officially released on January 5th. Slip into the etherealism via Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Slip into a chorally Lynchian delirium with Milk Bar Gang’s latest orchestration, The Accident

Hitting play on the latest single, The Accident, from Milk Bar Gang, you’d be forgiven for thinking you’ve slipped into a chorally Lynchian delirium as you allow the cultivated hazy dream pop tones to wash over you, submerging you in ethereal Avant-Garde surrealism.

The song’s sonic landscape is a complex tapestry, weaving together elements of Shoegaze’s choral dreaminess and the experimental edge reminiscent of Glenn Branca while the incorporation of jazzy rhythms and darkwave elements contribute to its rich and diverse texture.

Lyrically and thematically, The Accident delves into profound concepts. It reflects on the uncontrollable circumstances of birth and the ensuing struggle against oppression, as well as the emergence of resistance. This philosophical depth is matched by the music’s atmospheric synths and sharp guitar riffs, underlined by a rhythm section that couldn’t be further from archetypal. The unsettling melodies and chord progressions further enhance its impact, creating a sound that is simultaneously bleak and beautiful.

Recorded at home and refined by professionals in Melbourne, the single is a testament to Milk Bar Gang’s commitment to their craft. The band, formed in 2021 by Felix Chapple and Bianca Cao, brings a diverse range of influences and experiences. Chapple’s history with various Melbourne bands and musicians, combined with Cao’s background in dance and visual art from Beijing, contribute to the unique identity of Milk Bar Gang. If this is how they chose to end 2023, we’re aching to hear the artfully cohesive orchestrations that are lurking in the pipelines.

The Accident will debut on New Year’s Eve; hear it on SoundCloud.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Succumb to the sonorous resonance in Sophie Lilah’s latest indie dream pop single, Hazy

Sophie Lilah’s latest single, Hazy, took a few leaves from the songwriting books of Big Thief and Angel Olsen but left plenty of room for her own dreamy indie pop innovation by crafting a soundscape that entwines the ethereal with profoundly grounding magnetism as the lyrics traverse stratospheres of emotion and experience.

The song is a breath-taking ode to its title, sweeping listeners up in melodiously airy tides that reveal new depths with each listen. It’s a dreamscape that keeps giving, a testament to Lilah’s ingenuity and ability to create music that resonates on multiple levels.

There’s something so seductive about surrendering to the soul in the melodies that have been polished to indie pop perfection and strike a delicate balance between accessibility and depth in the ambience which alchemically becomes intimately expansive. The themes of longing, boredom, guilt over laziness, and everyday maladies are handled with a deft touch, offering resonance and relatable catharsis in no short measure. Her lyrics transcend language to open windows to her vulnerable yet juxtaposing empowered soul. We can’t rate Sophie Lilah highly enough. Get her on your radar and anticipate her next ahead of the curve move.

Hazy was officially released with the B-side single, Take Back the Power, on December 19. Stream it on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Take an indietronica trip between dreams and reality with Jespfur’s latest single, strapped

Jespfur’s latest single, strapped, is a mesmerising journey through a soundscape that defies the ordinary by sonically blurring the lines between consciousness and the ethereal realms of dreams. Jespfur, known for his unpredictable musical trajectory, has once again surpassed expectations, delivering a piece that resonates with the innovative spirit of Jaws, Peace, and M83, yet stands in a league of its own.

Strapped is an intricate amalgam of indietronica, grunge, new wave, and dream pop. Each layer is meticulously woven, creating a rich texture that envelops the listener. The track begins with a subtle grungy guitar rhythm that gradually builds into a crescendo of lush, dreamy tonal beguile. Jespfur’s genius lies in his ability to marry these diverse genres into a harmonious blend, making Strapped a testament to his artistic versatility.

The song’s brilliance is further amplified by its ability to evoke synesthesia. As the melodies unfold, they paint vibrant colours across the mind’s canvas. This tonal sublimity is Jespfur’s signature, a unique quality that makes his music resonate on a deeper, more visceral level.

With Strapped, Jespfur continues to redefine the boundaries of modern music. His fearless exploration of sound and texture makes each release a revelation. As we eagerly await Jespfur’s next creation, strapped emits a signal of his limitless potential. Prepare to be transported to a world where dreams and reality converge in a symphony of sound.

Stream the official music video for strapped on YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Nikki Hayes proves the power of vulnerability in her sensually captivating RnB evolution, SAFE

Nikki Hayes‘ latest RnB single, SAFE, showcases her unique ability to blend soulful vocals with a rich, resonant soundscape. It’s an aural revelation that resonates deeply with the listener, cutting to the core of the emotions it explores.

From the outset, SAFE captivates with its dreamy yet potent composition. The basslines, infused with a rich funk, provide a robust foundation that complements the ethereal quality of the track. This fusion of dreaminess with funk creates a soundscape that is both soothing and invigorating. The addition of blues-infused guitars adds another layer to the song, enhancing its emotional depth and complexity.

Hayes’ vocal performance is nothing short of enchanting. Her voice, both powerful and delicate, conveys a paradoxically beguiling sense of vulnerability and strength. The lyrics, which speak of finding safety in the arms of another in a chaotic world, are delivered with a sensuality and sincerity that is truly captivating.

Drawing inspiration from legends like Beyonce, Stevie Wonder, and Toni Braxton, Hayes has carved out a distinct sound that is both nostalgic and forward-thinking. Her journey from the basements of Chicago to collaborating with Grammy-winning artists is evident in the polished quality of SAFE. The track stands as a testament to her fearless work ethic, vocal finesse, and unwavering passion for music.

As she continues to evolve and captivate audiences with her unique sound, Nikki Hayes is undoubtedly an artist to watch.

SAFE was officially released on November 29. Stream it on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Chemistry becomes biology in Anna Salman’s seminal indie dream pop single, Blood Rush

Anna Salman’s single, Blood Rush, is a masterful blend of tender etherealism and emotionally charged lyricism. This track stands out as a poignant exploration of the transformative power of romantic chemistry on our very biology. Salman’s indie pop sensibilities are on full display, as she weaves a narrative that is both intimate and universally relatable.

The delicate balance of dream pop and nuanced orchestral elements creates a reverb-soaked atmosphere that perfectly complements Salman’s introspective songwriting. Her passionate vocals, glide effortlessly over the lush, evocative arrangements.

Introducing Turaab’s vocals adds a compelling dynamic to the track. This duet opens a dialogue, exploring the complexities of a relationship that leaves Salman’s protagonist in an affectionate haze, a sentiment mirrored in the song’s rich tonal textures. However, Blood Rush is not just an ode to love’s euphoric highs. Salman skillfully acknowledges the duality of passion, acknowledging that the sweetest of synergies often come with their share of misery. This acknowledgement adds a layer of depth to the track, resonating with anyone who has experienced the bittersweet nature of love.

Anna Salman, originally from Pakistan and now making waves in the U.S., has already proven her mettle with her performance on Nescafe Basement and her nomination for “The Best Emerging Talent” at the LUX Style Awards. Blood Rush further cements her status as a formidable talent in the indie pop scene. 

Blood Rush was officially released on December 1st; stream it on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast