Browsing Tag

dreampop

Claudia’s Graces drop haunting, brittle ‘Crystals’

Claudia's Graces

Claudia’s Graces is the solo experimental pop music project of Claudia Hinsdale, a 22 year-old singer, songwriter, and producer from Ohio. With a degree in Technology in Music and Related Arts from Ohio’s prestigious Oberlin Conservatory (ranked fifth in the world in Holloywood Reporter’s Top 25 Music Schools). That should give you an idea of the sort of quality we’re looking at here; our collective expectations were high, then, and we’re very pleased to report that ‘Crystals’ certainly doesn’t disappoint.

Light, shimmery, ephemeral, lying somewhere between folk and outright avant-garde, ‘Crystals’ is that rare beast; a track that’s hard to pigeon-hole or to draw easy comparisons for. Hinsdale’s free-form, stream of consciousness lyrics sit over layered, effected strings, keys, and unusual percussion, her vocal delivery sing-song and high register, almost choral at times, early music-like at others, folky and gentle yet with a definite commercial quality too. There’s vague allusions to Amanda Palmer, Tori Amos, or Emilie Autumn, but it’s much more than that – almost spoken word performance art set to a haunting, brittle backdrop, sparkling, glasslike, and…well, yes. Like crystals.

You can check out Claudia’s Graces here and on Instagram.

Review by Alex Holmes

Pleasure Centre – deep, ethereal dreampop with ‘Blue (Bertha)’

Carving a unique niche in the overly-effected and saturated tones of the current Shoegaze scene is a tricky call, but that’s pretty much what Scarborough’s Pleasure Centre have managed to do with ‘Blue (Bertha)’, mixing up old-school Slowdive, Ride, My Bloody Valentine, Cocteau Twins, and BDRMM with Beach House, bits of Bloc Party, and a touch of Morrissey’s vocal vibrato and lazy delivery. Add in some Psychocandy-era Jesus and Mary Chain, a touch of Swervedriver, and a liberal sprinkling of Fleeting Joys, and you get ‘Blue (Bertha) – a gentle, ephemeral thing of beauty, all chiming chorused guitars, pushing, background-soaking bass, and layered, reverb-drenched vocals. Melancholic, ephemeral, and echoing, this is a floaty, ethereal take on post-rock dreampop that – for all its delicacy – really deserves to be played loud.

You can check out Pleasure Centre on BandCamp now, and follow on Facebook and Instagram.

Review by Alex Holmes

Pray4Diego just can’t ‘Forget You’

Based out of Brooklyn, NYC, Pray4Diego is an independent recording artist and producer; new single ‘Forget You’ is a great mix of higher-tempo, hi-hat-focussed beats, tenderly picked electric guitar, and gentle, laid-back rap groove from Pray4Diego’s chilled, controlled delivery. Lyrically, it’s a plea to an ex-lover, where regret mingles with hope and a plea for another chance to make things right. It’s a well put-together track, nicely balanced between upbeat and longing, entreaty and repentance, all set to a simple backing of bass, hats, and that cute little repeating guitar line. The simplicity of the music and melody makes the track work, focussing the listener on the vocal line and lyrical flow, encouraging us to listen and take in Pray4Diego’s appeal. It’s tidy, it’s tasty, and it’d genuinely got soul.

You can hear ‘Forget You’ on Spotify; find Pray4Diego on Instagram and SoundCloud.

Review by Alex Holmes

Slip into the choral indietronica tones in Seven Layer Piano Cakes’ latest release ‘Patriarch’

With the evocative sensibilities of Thrice, the harmoniously enrapturing pull of The Beach Boys and the neo-psych dreampop inclinations of Beach House, ‘Patriarch’, the title single from Seven Layer Piano Cakes’ EP was never going to fall flat.

We’ve all had plenty more time to get in touch with our emotions recently, Patriarch will ensure that it is time well spent as it acts as an efficacious dreampop guide to meditative affable reflection. With the lyrical sparsity, there are plenty of opportunities to sit back and drink in the choral indietronica tones with a sense of optimism instilled by the harmoniously layered instantly enamouring feat of pop.

Seven Layer Piano Cakes is the project of LA law professor and attorney, Justin Hoyt. With his eclectic array of influences and his aptitude with atypical chord progressions and consoling vocal charisma, there’s very little getting in his way as a breaking artist. Get him on your radar.

Patriarch is available to stream via YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Brave New Broken Hearts Club follow in the luminary footsteps of the Legendary Pink Dots with ‘Love Is On Its Way’

Brave New Broken Hearts Club

The musical vehicle for London-native singer-songwriter Neil Phillimore, Brave New Broken Hearts Club new single – released on the 29th January, and the first track from the forthcoming new album – is a delicate, melancholy semi-acoustic number; a tremolo-laden picked guitar part sits atop closed hi hats and Phillimore’s unapologetically character-filled vocals. Think of a ‘Country House’ era Damon Albarn, a North London wash delivering a evocative narrative of tainted love and shattered expectations.

It’s a great track, pretty and self-aware at the same time, downbeat without being downtrodden. Phillimore’s Suggs-like delivery perfectly suits the lyrical content, there’s some beautiful harmonies courtesy of Peckham folk singer Pearl Fish, and the repeating guitar motif adds weight throughout the track. Overall, ‘Love Is On Its Way’ is heartfelt, hopeful, and emotive, a perfect introduction to Brace New Broken Hearts Club – with two more singles scheduled before the release of the debut album later this year, it looks as though success, for sure, is on its way.

Love is On Its Way is available to stream from January 29th, you can pre-save the single on Spotify via this link.

Review by Alex Holmes

BrooksOfYork – To Giants: Indie Dreampop You Won’t Want to Wake Up From

Within up and coming Indie artist BrooksOfYork’s latest single To Giants, you’ll find compassion, modernism, and plenty of reasons to repeatedly press play.

The clean guitar tones under delay and reverb bring a sense of fragility to the soundscape while the resoundingly magnetic vocals draw you into the profoundly contemplative lyrical narrative.

With To Giants, BrooksOfYork found the perfect balance of intricate Indie Rock experimentalism and sticky sweet Pop sincerity. Their dreamy signature blend of electronica and acoustic elements offers a rare level of nuance which rarely hits the airwaves.

Naturally, as with every artist who efficaciously hits the evocative spot with their sound, we can’t wait to hear what follows.

You can check out To Giants for yourselves by heading over to Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Wally Hoak has made their viscerally experimental Alt Urban Pop debut with “Complicated”

https://soundcloud.com/wjoaquin9/complicated

Usually, you’d have to turn to Dreampop or Shoegaze to hear guitar tones as tantalising as the ones you will find in Wally Hoak’s Alt Urban Pop single “Complicated”.

The experimentally indulgent soundscape is a collision of culture, seasoned by the frustrative grief which can sour the sweetest of relationships.

While there’s a fairly wistful and melancholic air to the former verses, with the following verses, Wally Hoak starts to project the visceral contempt which usually manifests when romantic partners unnecessarily push and blur boundaries leaving us unaware of where we stand but all too aware that we look like an idiot.

With the amount of resonance in Complicated, we can’t wait to hear how the artist serves up his soul in his sophomore release.

You can check out Wally Hoak’s debut single Complicated by heading over to SoundCloud.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Paola Rogue – This Picture: Soul-Soothingly-Sludgy Indie Shoegaze

https://paolarogue.bandcamp.com/track/this-picture

Costa Rican singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Paola Rogue may be better known for her work in her band, The Great Wilderness, but her recently released second solo album may be the best testament to her talent when it comes to crafting soul-soothing Lo-Fi Indie.

While each of the sludgy yet light and dextrous tracks has the capacity to leave you pleasantly catatonic, any fans of Slowdive and My Bloody Valentine will definitely want to delve into the deftly weaved tones in This Picture as they mellifluously sweep through the reverb-drenched production.

Atop of the absorbing Shoegaze-style instrumentals which also ring with a touch of Post-Punk, you’ll hear Paola Rogue’s compelling vocals which are all too efficacious when it comes to drawing emotion out of you.

You can check out This Picture for yourselves by heading over to Bandcamp.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Hannah Crowley has made her Shoegaze-infused Indie Pop debut with “Scrolling”

Dublin-born, LA-based singer-songwriter Hannah Crowley has made her debut with the mellifluously immersive single “Scrolling”.

The nuances of Shoegaze in the Indie Pop soundscape give the instrumentals a smoothly melodious feel while the lyrics offer a bruising amount of resonance. If you’re sick of spending your days attached to your phone trying to stay connected with the world, lyrics such as “scrolling through my life to past the time” will hit hard.

It’s not every day we hear debut singles as promising as Scrolling. Get her on your radar.

Scrolling is due for release on August 21st, you’ll be able to check it out on all major platforms including SoundCloud.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

UK Alt artist 8udDha bl0od has released their enticingly chilling ambient soundscape “The Lost Pleiad”

https://soundcloud.com/william-orpen/23tauri/s-R5rzoOZ8wR6

Aural enigma 8udDha bl0od has unleashed yet another enticingly chilling soundscape on the airwaves with their latest release “The Lost Pleiad”.

It takes an unholy amount of talent to create an experimental track which offers instant magnetic appeal, but that’s exactly what 8udDha bl0od achieved with his ambiently beguiling single. The tones may have bordered on celestial but didn’t mean that 8udDha bl0od had to hold back on his almost Machiavellianly mischievous ingenuity.

From start to finish, The Lost Pleiad was mesmeric and all-consuming. Around the inventive electronic effects, you’ll find sporadic offerings of angularly picked guitar strings and tranquil pools of reverb which will convince you to hit play time and time again.

There’s no adjective more fitting for The Lost Pleiad than stunning. As always, we can’t wait to hear what 8udDha bl0od has in the pipeline.

You can check out 8udDha bl0od’s latest single for yourselves by heading over to SoundCloud.

Review by Amelia Vandergast