Browsing Tag

Elliott Smith

Australian alt-indie singer-songwriter Greg Barnett advocated for nature in his existential serenade, ‘The C-Bomb’

Starting his single with clips of Donald Trump’s cognitive dissonance was a bold choice, but his obnoxious tones will always evoke a visceral reaction from the minds Greg Barnett aimed to compel with his standout single, The C-Bomb.

Taken from his massive 30-track debut LP, The Flat White Album, the single reminds us of the role we all need to play in salvaging the planet before it burns hotter than the temper of a right winger when expected to find a modicum of empathy or awareness.

The orchestrally laced alt-indie-folk soundscape that will make any Elliott Smith fans feel instantaneously at home delivers a shot of vindication through the affirmation that you’re not alone in your climate anxiety. Which is as warranted as it is a necessity if we want to take back our world from the disaster capitalists who would be happy to walk in the ashes as long as there are enough 0s in their bank balance before the curtains close on humanity.

The C-Bomb is available to stream on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Mike Power – I Like You: prepossessingly pure alt-rock

Fuelling the intimate feels of Elliott Smith with the swanky proto-punk zeal of the Kinks and the melodic colour of the Beatles, the latest single from Mike Power which carries eccentric echoes of Pavement, Courtney Barnett and Decemberists, is a soul-rendered alt-rock riot.

The tight instrumental framework of I Like You allows the affably sweet sentiments in the uninhibited declaration of passion to hit that little bit harder as you lose yourself in the blossoming soul that heightens the winding alt-90s influenced rhythms to the nth degree. It doesn’t quite drop the L word, but I think we can all agree that the ‘like’ phase in a foundling relationship when we’re enamoured by every idiosyncrasy is just as prepossessing.

I Like You is just one of the singles to feature on the increasingly popular sophomore album, Compulsions, from the NYC-formed Mike Power band. We wholly recommend making time to appreciate the dynamism of it in its entirety.

I Like You is now available to stream on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

 

Thom Morecroft – The Last Day You Left Home

Thom Morecroft is a singer songwriter who loves to bring intimacy with melody and energy into one concise, yet catchy formula. His most recent single, “The Last Day You Left Home”, is a very earnest and understanding song that has a warm sound, and an even warmer heart to it.

The production quality is quite astonishing. It offers a really clean and pristine sound, but definitely not a sterile tone by all means. The balance is awesome, and it enables the listeners to fully enjoy the nuances that they can experience in Thom Morecroft’s music and lyrics alike. “The Last Day You Left Home” is at times energetic and catchy, at times personal and understated, echoing the work of influential artists such as Damien Rice, Elliott Smith, and Iron & Wine, only to mention a few.

Find out more about Thom Morecroft, and check out “The Last Day You Left Home” on all the best digital streaming services out there. This release is going to be a must for fans of indie-folk.

Spotlight Feature: Australian singer-songwriter, Ted, sang an insurgent indie-psych-folk lullaby in his latest single, Revolution Then

The Australian Indie-Folk singer-songwriter Ted’s latest single, Revolution Then, is definitive proof you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.

The artfully quiescent call for sense to coalesce with postulation resonates like a semi-lucid lullaby, affirming enlightenment doesn’t always need to be synonymous with anger and despair. Sometimes, it is just enough to be on the right side of history.

While Elliott Smith’s records will always be there to soothe us in our darkest hours, he’s no longer here to transcribe humanity’s darkest hours. That crown has evidently fallen upon Ted, who is fearless in his quest to hold a mirror to the most tragic facets of our existence before reflecting them through his psych-tinged arrangements crafted in the mellifluous framework of his music, constructed by guitars, bass, drums, sax and keys – all recorded from his bedroom studio to feed us the intimacy we never knew we craved in these polarity-defined times.

“The song is loosely based on the French Revolution. I was inspired by some more recent political events which occurred in the US. I wanted to convey this in a way that was like telling an old story to a child, like in a nursery rhyme.”

Stream Revolution Then via Spotify.

Follow Ted on Instagram and TikTok.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Spotlight Feature: Allan Hill is profound in the indie-folk delicacy of his sophomore album, Oxford

With each single an embodiment of warmth and compassion, any indie-folk fan with a semblance of self-awareness will want to make Allan Hill’s sophomore album, Oxford, their aural home.

In the same vein as Elliott Smith, Adrianne Lenker (Big Thief), and Sufjan Stevens, the album which was officially released on June 10th, is profound in its delicacy. Consisting of little more than subtly warm synths, banjo, fingerpicked guitars and quiescently revealing vocals, the release aids just that; the release of every frustration our isolated age has imparted.

With finding resilience being an overarching theme, which ebbs through the nine-track release, by the time Goodbye Blue Monday rolls around you have a confidant in the Canadian artist.

Starting with the single, Angell Woods, which was recorded in one take in the woods, it is all too easy to ease yourself into the enveloping accordant resonance of the LP. Before track two, This Time of Year cuts to the bone with the precision of the artist’s ability to allude to weather-triggered emotion that words alone can never explain.

The sepia-tinged melodicism of the title-single allows the fact that Hill only picked up a guitar during lockdown almost unbelievable. As simple as the light production, which contrasts the heavy lyricism, may be, there’s a tenacity to the rhythm, allowing it to feel as natural as breathing.

Here is what Allan Hill had to say on his sophomore release:

“Oxford delicately documents the process of starting over and coming to terms with solitude, guilt, and inevitable change in real-time. Impermanence is a common theme. Empty stretches of highway, late night phone calls, decaying suburbs, violence, tender conversations and flora and fauna are all intertwined to create an intimate yet isolating universe.”

Hear the album on Spotify & Bandcamp. Follow Allan Hill on Instagram.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Allan Hill muses on impermanence in his sophomore album, Oxford

Unlike many lockdown-born projects, the Indie-folk solo artist, Allan Hill, didn’t give up the ghost when the bars opened again. After his 2021 debut, he’s revealed the delicate melancholia refined in his sophomore 2022 album, Oxford.

In his own words, the LP is a “coming of age turning inwards and an exploration of impermanence, nostalgia, isolation and queerness.” In the title single, the invitingly warm plaintive soul wraps around the simplistic admission, “everything keeps changing, and I’m fine”, which isn’t profound in itself until you start to consider the journey an artist had to go through to make that proclamation.

The fingerpicked Either/Or-era Elliott Smith reminiscences may be strong in the nature entwined single, but Hill’s autonomy as a stunningly talented artist in his own right is enough to quiescently beat them into submission.

Oxford is now available to stream on Spotify. Grab some tissues first though, yeah?

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Mustard Mountain Moving Company lament societal idiosyncracy in their Avant-Garde debut, Make it Stop?

For anyone that can relate to the sentiment ‘stop the world I want to get off’, the debut single, Make it Stop? from Mustard Mountain Moving Company should be considered unmissable.

Far from another lockdown lament, the track has been 18-years in the making from the Pittsburgh scene veterans, proving that ennui-blackened frustration has been viable for almost two decades. Yet, notably, it was a devilishly timely release from the lo-fi Avant-Garde artist, who will enamour fans of Elliott Smith and Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds alike.

While the lyrics put the idiosyncrasies of our modern existence in the spotlight, the playful synths ensure that the light of day isn’t all too harsh. You couldn’t ask for sweeter sugar for the pill of reality. Do yourselves a favour, affix them to your radar.

You can hear Mustard Mountain Moving Company’s debut single for yourselves by heading over to Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Spotlight Feature: Tim Jackson reached the pinnacle of tender tenacity in his alt-indie single, An Unusual Time

With his standout single, An Unusual Time, taken from his sophomore album, Litter in the Park, the London-based singer-songwriter Tim Jackson, proved that the most consoling tracks don’t evade the grittiest facets of our existence, they encompass them and deliver us from them with pure transcendent panache.

An Unusual Time is so soothing it’s practically medicinal for the way Jackson contends with the unrelenting uncertainty in all of our lives with infectious ease. Sure, there’s been no short supply on exports of lockdown-inspired singles, but Jackson’s Elliott Smith-Esque vocals and tender tenacity are something to behold time and time again. There is as much nuance in the endlessly unravelling lyricism as in the mellifluous complex time signatures that bring an organic dynamic to the indie alt-rock meets jazz sanctum of a soundscape.

Here’s what Tim Jackson had to say about An Unusual Time

“This song is something we can all relate to after several years of once in a lifetime events; it speaks to the sense of bewilderment I was feeling when I wrote it. The title is both lyrically straightforward and cheeky, given the odd 5/8-time signature.”

Litter in the Park is now available to stream in full via Spotify.

Keep up to date with the latest releases from Tim Jackson via Facebook.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

 

Shane Cooley finds freedom in isolation in his alt-indie-folk single, Coyote

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Inspired by tumultuous times and personal emotional upheavals, the acclaimed alt indie-folk singer-songwriter, Shane Cooley, stepped into the metaphysical wild to create his seminal upcoming album, Forest. The first single to be released, Coyote, is a hauntingly euphonic hit that blends tonal palettes of Jack White and Elliott Smith while experimenting with artful simplicity and the dust of desert rock. Vocally, Cooley parallels Grandaddy with his honeyed high timbres that still resonate as organic despite the raised velvety pitches.

With lyrics that run like wild poetry, “A coyote/In grown man’s clothing/Forever lonely/Forever free/Down in the valley/Out on the streets/If you push me/ I’ll show my teeth”, this modernised feat of indie-folk Americana won’t fail to reel you into the themes of isolation and freedom, which are proven to be two of the same.

We can’t wait to hear what the rest of his seminal LP delivers. The Richmond, VA artist may be flying under a lot of people’s radars. Yet, it is only a matter of time before he gets full recognition for his inexplicably honed-in talent and instantly magnetic charisma as a songwriter.

Coyote will officially drop on April 8th, 2022. You can check it out for yourselves by heading over to Bandcamp.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Winternom – True: Meet your new existential alt-indie playlist staple

The alt-indie-folk-rock newcomers, Winternom, are set to bring souls in from the cold with the standout single, True, from their sophomore album, The Cold or the Crowd. Sonically, the hazily sweet single sits between Elliott Smith and Pavement, with a few proto-punk-meets-psych-pop nuances.

Lyrically, the Ottawa, Canada-hailing artist comes into their own with their witticisms that walk the line between existentialism and affection in a way that pays ode to the Alt 90s while still delivering emotive modernism. Despite its overarching lo-fi vibe, the dreamy textures in True never resonate as brash. Instead, they keep the tones bright to contrast the less than sunny, deeply relatable vocal disposition.

True is now available to stream along with the rest of Winternom’s triumph of an album, The Cold or the Crowd via Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast