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Heavy Salad – Reverse Snake: The Most Cosmically Cathartic Protest Song You’ll Hear All Year

After Heavy Salad appeared on my radar with their effervescently hallucinogenic Alt Rock single “Battery Acid”, my soul felt a little lighter.

The Manchester-based trio’s latest single “Reverse Snake” may be eerier and more serpentine. But considering that Reverse Snake was written in the light (should that be crushing darkened despair?) of Brexit and the insidious nature of our capitalistically gluttonous government, they set the perfect tone in their cosmic feat of catharsis.

With Reverse Snake, crawling fuzzy basslines lead the way into a kaleidoscope of shimmering rhythm into choruses where danceable euphoria still splinters through the overdriven guitars. With Ross Orton (Arctic Monkeys, Drenge, The Vaccines) responsible for the recording, producing and mixing, Heavy Salad’s sound gives you no indication that they’re fresh from inception.

It’s one thing for a band to pull together a nuanced stylistic sound and a tight instrumental arrangement. But the key to Heavy Salad’s infectious edge is the sense that each artist throws their whole sticky-sweet souls into the music. It’s not all too often you get to hear vocalists who don’t strip away their personality and put forward a preening polished pretence. Head to one of their live shows and it will be palpable that they’re feeling the music just as much as you are.

You can check out Reverse Snake which was released on October 31st along with Heavy Salad’s earlier releases via Spotify.

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Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

Gelax – Mr Square: The Most Fiercely Convictive Alt Rock Single You’ll Hear All Year

“Mr Square” is the latest single to be released by the experimentally pioneering, unfuckwithably fabulous up and coming artist Gelax.

Without any hint of hyperbole, I may have just stumbled across my favourite new artist in 2019. From the very first time of hearing Mr Square, the taunting, sardonic nature of the lyrics hits you along with the unique sense of satisfaction through listening to such convictive lyricism laying down an aural attack on misogyny.

The same instantaneously gripping effect is something that I have only ever experienced through hitting play on any of Amanda Palmer’s (Dresden Dolls) tracks. And that’s certainly not a comparison I make lightly.

Despite the angst behind the inspiration of the soundscape, the lyrics are versed through reflectively hazy vocals which sit in perfect synergy with the instrumentals which share the same lucid textures until the basslines come in to dominate the soundscape through blistering grooves.

You can check out Mr Square along with Gelax’s earlier released singles for yourselves by heading over to Spotify now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

Alex Travers – Wonderful Wonderland: Captivatingly Decadent Indie Folk

Alex Travers latest single “Wonderful Wonderland” is pretty much an aural offering of just what it says on the tin. From the first verse, there was the affirmation that Alex Travers’ conceptually bold style of neo-classically infused, darkly jazzy, captivatingly decadent sound is one that I’d never forget.

The up and coming Indie Folk artist has a daringly eccentric, psychedelically enamouring approach to their soundscapes which come together to offer indulgently smooth alchemic experiences. If you could imagine a cross between Nick Cave and Elliot Smith, you’d get a fairly good idea of what you can expect from Alex Travers. Their ability as a multi-instrumentalist and songwriter is beyond words.  I can’t recommend that you check out Wonderful Wonderland enough.

You can check out Alex Travers’ single Wonderful Wonderland for yourselves by heading over to Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

Aidan Maizels releases their sonically ethereal Art Rock single “Nuages Cœur”

https://aidanmaizels.bandcamp.com/track/nuages-c-ur?fbclid=IwAR0ytwHhDFnS8XDlxh5WaWGruzXn_M8AqZk567PoSie-8JSnj56ZLwLkE18

Aidan Maizels released their latest artfully indulgent single “Nuages Cœur” on September 20th, sharing with the airwaves a unique smorgasbord of sounds which pull together in sonically lucid concordance.

The single may kick off with some slightly ominous synth keys, yet, the progressions of the single reveal plenty of elements of psychedelic ambience – that’s when the melody behind Nuages Cœur truly grips you. There’s an incredible amount of catharsis to be found in Nuages Cœur, and it’s safe to say that it should be plenty of appeal to any fans of bands such as Slowdive, My Bloody Valentine, and Ride.

Considering that I’m fairly aurally jaded and Nuages Cœur still managed to give me chills, that’s a fairly undeniable testament to Aidan Maizels ability as a songwriter, vocalist, and multi-instrumentalist.

If the alchemic contortions of sound don’t leave you enamoured, the fact that the Melbourne-based artist wrote it about falling in love with a cloud definitely should do it.

You can stream and download Nuages Cœur by heading over to Bandcamp now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

Wlav – Shatter ft. Hardy Harajuku: Darkly Dystopian Indie Electronica

https://open.spotify.com/track/6Jxl3l5qUIlUV1JWGKBwki?si=hMPFeBMqQS-sc4i-UMHDUw

Taking inspiration from acclaimed Electronica artists such as Madison, Flume & Neon Hitch, up and coming Indie Electronica artist and producer Wlav has constructed their own darkly futuristic feat of downtempo House with “Shatter” ft. Hardy Harajuku.

The Carolina-based artist uses their home studio to create soundscapes with a postmodern feel. Instead of hooking you into a melody, with Shatter, you’re left to follow the dark, gritty progressions which throw plenty of cold and ominous tones your way.

Even though ominously orchestrated experimental Indie electronica is never going to be everyone’s cup of tea, Wlav still hasn’t failed to attract plenty of hype around their darkened highly conceptual tones.

You can check out Shatter along with Wlav’s earlier releases for yourselves by heading over to Spotify now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

Taūv has released their darkest soundscape yet with latest single “They Can Tell Us We’re Crazy”

Up and coming Experimental Electronica artist Taūv’s latest single “They Can Tell Us We’re Crazy” invites you into a dark and alchemically dynamic feat of symphonic aural dystopia.

The US-based artist’s track offers eerie reverb-laden dread, tantalising soft electronic percussion, and inventive vocal samples which draw you right into the ominous energy of the single. Through the archaic samples the mix perfectly alludes to our uncomfortable relationships with sanity and the varying definitions of sanity. It’s a raw poignant work which may be subtle in its intention, but Taūv has made sure that They Can Tell Us We’re Crazy” resonates with visceral effect.

You can check out Taūv’s latest single for yourselves by heading over to Spotify now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

yung pope has released their most artfully lucid, disconcertment-laden track yet with “Blind Roam”

It’s been a while since I encountered a soundscape which was so ethereal it gave me chills. But up and coming Spanish Alt artist yung pope succeeded with “Blind Roam”.

“Blind Roam” is just one of the phantasmically lucid singles which you will find on their three-track EP “Solitude” which unravels as a soundtrack of Lynchian-style dysphoria.

There may be plenty of ambience within the reverb in Blind Roam, but it was never orchestrated to offer accordance. The hazy vocals synergistically bleed into the fluid echoes of the barely tangible melody to give you an unadulterated hit of melancholy.

yung pope’s soundscapes may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but there’s a lot to be said for music which almost resonates as a dreamscape but throws enough plaintively ominous emotion in there to let you know that you’re not quite in Kansas.

You can check out yung pope’s single Blind Roam for yourselves by heading over to Spotify now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

Brenoski Libertae – Oriente Incidental (Prólogo): Intricately Frenzied Blues

Without a hint of exaggeration, I can safely say that no other contemporary Blues Folk track has left me quite as enraptured as Brenoski Libertae’s single Oriente Incidental (Prólogo).

Oriente Incidental (Prólogo) was released on August 14th and contains a smorgasbord of technical high-octane progressions of frenzied archaic Blues. What the instrumental single lacks in vocals, it more than makes up for with the eclectic acoustic arrangement.

The string arrangement carves out seamlessly melodic meandering rhythms which switch between swampy hillbilly raucous licks and intricate high tempo upbeat Folk throughout Oriente Incidental (Prólogo). It may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but there’s no disputing Brenoski Libertae’s talent after listening to this prodigal single unfold.

You can check out Brenoski Libertae’s single Oriente Incidental (Prólogo) for yourselves by heading over to YouTube now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

Normal Tea Drops Their Latest Experimental Electro Mix “Funky Suicide”

Thinking you’ve heard it all before when it comes to music is a pretty dangerous assumption. Which Normal Tea aptly alluded to in their latest experimental live recorded mix “Funky Suicide”.

Any fans of electronica artists who like to play with darker textures such as Otto Von Schirach and DJ Scotch Egg are sure to appreciate what Normal Tea has cooked up with this marathon mix of sonic aural mayhem. But Normal Tea still found plenty of space for indulgent additions of Funk to bring the rhythm to Funky Suicide.

The name of the mix may be SLIGHTLY in bad taste, but there’s a lot to appreciate within the inventive textures of the constantly evolving track.

You can check out Normal Tea’s latest mix for yourselves by heading over to SoundCloud now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

East Meets West in Taichmania’s Alchemically Rendered Single “Arabesk”

Hitting play on a masterfully rendered non-western track always makes me question why we don’t do it more. Which is exactly what happened when I surrendered to the exotic invigorating rhythms contained in the first track “Arabesk” on Taichmani’s 2019 album “Seventh Heaven”.

Instead of ingesting the same four-bar chords, Arabesk is a vibrant mix of Bass-driven EDM, Jungle, Turkish rhythm, British Psychedelia and Middle Eastern mysticism which comes together in a commandingly arrestive fashion. It is a perfect reminder that true rhythm shouldn’t just leave us with the compulsion to move to it, it should give us very little choice in doing so. I never expected synths, the violin, and sax to be able to come together in such a truly alchemic fashion, I don’t expect that anyone else will be better prepared than me

You can check out Taichmania’s single Arabesk along with the rest of their album Seventh Heaven for yourselves by heading over to Spotify now.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

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