After making her art-pop debut in 2020 with her beguilingly dark EP, Life is Strange, Starleen came into her cinematically ethereal own through the unveiling of her ceremonially humanistic LP, To Give In.
To Give In explores our desires to succumb to the forces keeping us on our knees while celebrating our unwavering determination to endeavour the myriad of storms that our chaotic world unleashes upon us. With soundscapes that spill a jarring sense of unease around the assuredly celestial vocals that moodily paint the imperfection of the human experience around the pulsating indietronica rhythms, anyone who accepts the idiosyncratic beauty of the human experience will find a wealth of resonance across the seven soundscapes.
All too often, lyricism paints humanity, as a collective, as what we wish we were, what we aim for; an endless series of pretences held up by scarcely anyone for any enduring length of time before perfectionism becomes a crushing weight. Starleen breaks the mould by upholding the truth behind the facades. Paired with the cathartically artful structuring of the soundscapes, her bold daringness to encapsulate the most harrowing facets of the human psyche in To Give In unleashes a wealth of emotion.
For me, the highlight of the LP came in the form of the penultimate single, Out of Touch, which efficaciously reflects the multi-sensory nature of disassociation. Before the album concludes on the tranquility of the reverb-drenched melodies in From Myself. Any fans of London Grammar and Chelsea Wolfe won’t want to skip it. Actually, that goes for the entire LP. It’s officially in my collection of sad girl playlist staples.
“With this project, I knew I wanted to create a dark world. The message I try to convey is that in life, we have choices. Although going back may tempting, we have to move forward. People and their strength to overcome life’s battles always has been an inspiration to me.
Lyrically I have always gravitated towards artists like Nina Simone, Tom Waits, and Leonard Cohen because they talk about what it truly means to be human. And that is something I try to bring in my music.”
To Give In is available to stream on Spotify.
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Review by Amelia Vandergast
Berlin-based Breaking Pop artist Stelahr’s latest single Hundred Thousand Miles quite literally left me lost for words. In my extended mentally-incapacitated state of awe, the adjectives for Stelahr’s unique artful style alluded me.
The soundscape was as instrumentally, atmospherically and lyrically complex as you’d expect from the likes of Elliott Smith. Believe me, that’s not a comparison I make lightly. Yet, Stelahr allowed the dreamy and blissful track to sting with piercing melancholic longing which emanated from the stabbing notes in the piano and her haunting semi-operatic vocal style.
The ethereally moody soundscape paired with the official video which was created with a little help from the Sims 4 made the evocative potency of Hundred Thousand Miles even stronger. Watching the Sims character idle in domesticity before springing to life around music, crowds and nature hit especially hard thanks to lockdown. But Hundred Thousand Miles is definitely worth getting aurally bruised by.
You can check out the transfixing official music video to Hundred Thousand Miles which premiered on June 26th for yourselves by heading over to YouTube.
Review by Amelia Vandergast
Trailed by a captivating overall musical performance which was further adorned with a catchy electro-pop sound that leaves one twirling and swirling to its gracious vibe, Night Ride really proved that they are still belligerent, camera-ready and more focused to reach the zenith of their music career in their sojourn thus far. This duo is the next best thing to happen to the Electro-pop music industry.
No, this is not like the usual drudge we do take in with a hard pinch of salt, It only takes 3 seconds out 4 minutes total play time of this amazing song for you to be entrapped and unfurled into a forever porch light of beautiful reverie.
So out goes the pop-electro-rock hybrid; which in its place sits a broad EDM party mix that initially manifested itself as One Republic pastiche on a subtle tale of unrequited love and emotional trauma. It’s exactly when the beam of awesomely pitched melody and amazing sexy vocals entwines with the synth-pop vibe of this song that its power of transfixion sets in.
The accentuate music group; Night Ride, is an electronic pop duo embracing synth-pop and rock, and fusing it with theatre, fashion, technology and art which creates a comfort zone that feels genuine.
Night Ride band draws their inspiration on this song from the tale of their sexual experience and couple of situation-ships which isn’t really what you would likely notice at the first listen since the vibe would rather make you pay less attention to the lyrics of the song. This also further backed up the reason why their music influencers happen to be the likes The Weeknd, CHVRCHES, Grimes, GusGus, and Paramore.
As the first track to be released from their forthcoming E.P. ‘Neon Dreams’, Lay You Down gives a good insight of what to expect from the up and coming duo and I simply hope they’d surpass my imagination just like they did in this song when I eventually get my hands on their EP album when it’s released.
A north star in a psychedelic milky way is the overriding theme of Night Ride’s “Lay You Down”. Everything was more than I expected. Simply put, It was nothing short of class and quality.
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Erica Cooper announces the release of her debut album Safety Escape, April 29th 2017 on her record label Safety Escape Records. Erica is a Alternative Pop singer/songwriter from the Seattle area.
Her debut album was produced by Alek Edmonds, mixed by Paul David Hager (live engineer for Miley Cyrus, Devo) and mastered by Howie Weinberg (Nirvana, Jeff Buckley).
Erica performs as a solo artist and with her five piece band. She studied Jazz Vocal Performance and Composition at Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle. She took an interest in audio and met engineer and producer Alek Edmonds. There she found her passion for writing and sound. For the last 3 years, she has been writing and recording her debut album.
Erica is influenced by Disco and artists such as Radiohead, The Eurythmics, Grimes, Joni Mitchell, Enya, Florence and the Machine, Imogen Heap, Arcade Fire and Feist. Themes in Erica’s music include the roles we play in love relationships, vulnerability, being present and staying in the moment, loss, addiction, her struggle with Lyme Disease, the highest highs and the lowest lows, self empowerment, setting boundaries, and hope.
Erica was fortunate to record in some amazing studios including London Bridge, Synergy and Avast in Seattle and Encore Studio A in LA.
Nola Wren and Kill Dave are Brooklyn-based songwriter / producers whose blend of gritty experimental indie and infectious pop hooks is sure to turn heads. Knife is their first collaboration and a promising sign of what’s to come.
“Knife” is a great track and showcases Nola’s powerful vocals with Kill Dave’s full, grit-pop production. The lyrics were also inspired by the case involving convicted Stanford rapist Brock Turner which gives the track an emotional edge.
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