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Indie Rock

Music

Formed during COVID-19: The Band Esther drop debut single ‘Run’ off ‘The Pandemic EP’

A flourishing start is portrayed with the tapping of the drum sticks that gets us in the right mood. We are then lifted into an Alt-Rock world that has carefully clear vocals which are so sweet on the ear. New 5-Piece Mississippi outfit The Band Esther show us their vulnerable side with ‘Run‘.

This is all about wishing that the special one that you care about would stop hiding away from you, when you really want things to work out and for you to be together. Sometimes the heart wants what the heart wants and you can’t forget it about it so quickly. The desire and love is there and that should be enough. In this unnecessarily complicated world however, sometimes that is just not enough.

With a spectacular sound that defies their young age as a band, this is a well-thought out single that is full of regret and wonder about what has quite happened. The melodies have you hooked instantly and you can’t help but sing along- always an action that knows you are listening to something really good.

The proudly Mississippi act The Band Esther are excellent on ‘Run‘ and for a debut release, this is an exciting step into becoming well-known around the world. They are a classy outfit, full of energy and precision.

Hear this debut track on Spotify and see more about the band on their Facebook music page.

Reviewed by Llewelyn Screen

Music

Taking control of her own destiny: Ireland’s Alice Lynskey sings with soul on ‘The Reason’

With a sweeping start that has you hooked like a fish on a line, her voice takes you to place that few artist have the ability to transport your heart to. Wexford based singer-songwriter Alice Lynskey is a class above and does it in a style that is so comforting on her new single named ‘The Reason‘.

In a world full of fakes, its so refreshing to hear an artist who puts her heart and soul into every word, her energy is one of strength and resolve- you get the feeling that she likes to take charge of her own life. Sitting back and expecting things to happen is an attitude that is foreign to this outrageously talent singer, who has also worked hard to refine her style.

This is about taking charge and putting yourself in control of your destiny- a message that every human in the world needs to hear. With a boatload of gigs and festivals planned for 2020, reality hit hard with cancellations and the tough got going. Finishing up those long-awaited recordings was now the way and this will be beneficial in the long-term for the young Irish singer.

“The Reason is a song about looking life in the eye. We hope and dream that, depending on where we are in life, things will change or stay the same. That we will be lucky and happy. We convince ourselves that things will change. However sometimes we need to take a breath, stand up and look life straight in the eye. It’s the only way to see the reason why we are where we are and then have the ability to change it” – Alice Lynskey

The Reason‘ from Alice Lynskey is a guiding light to those who need inspiration and the quality is so clear to see as she effortlessly reaches for her greater self in exhilarating fashion.

Find this excellent new single set for release on November 18th via Soundcloud and show support on her Facebook.

Reviewed by Llewelyn Screen

Music

Trying to stay sane in 2020: California’s Natasha Pocket puts feelings into words on ‘Therapy Session (West Mix)’

A groovy and honest guitar-filled sound emanates from the speakers, as we are introduced to a sharp start with so much promise. California’s Natasha Pocket shows the growing frustration with this horrible year on the guitar-filled new single called ‘Therapy Session (West Mix)‘.

Encinitas, California based and full of real feelings that is all about this wild year. This is all about needing to express your feelings and getting to the bottom of that worrying slump that you want to get out of as soon as possible. A year that has made overthinking so much more prominent- due to all the time stuck inside.

With a flourishing Indie-Rock feel with a Lo-Fi base, there are so many lusty layers of solo’s here to keep us all happy. The vocal are quite sad and worrying as the year has taken its toll and some therapy is needed to work out what to do next.

Natasha Pocket’s Therapy Session (West Mix)‘ is a song that is so relevant in modern day times and the carefully curated message puts a thoughtful spin on everything before us. The world is really smokey right now so we all need someone to talk to, as bottling those feelings up only causes more heartbreak.

Hear ‘Therapy Session (West Mix)’ here on YouTube and support this artist here on their Bandcamp.

Reviewed by Llewelyn Screen

Music

Versonic – Seen It All: An Indie Rock Anthem for the Ennui-Burdened

https://versonic1.bandcamp.com/track/seen-it-all

There was no forgetting Epsom, UK Alt-Indie artist Versonic after we heard their magnetic Indie Shoegaze track, A Second in Time in 2018. This time, they’re back with even more harmonic motion and sonorous lyrical depth with their single “Seen it All”.

Perceptibly, 2020 has had a profound effect on the already highly acclaimed award-winning songwriter Stephen Connor. If you’ve been fraught with ennui recently, it may just feel like the lyricism has been taken from your own unshockable mind which scarcely knows how to react to atrocity anymore.

Despite the resilient upbeat vitality of Seen It All, there’s no retracting the striking melancholy from the lyrics. But that’s not to say that you won’t find plenty of soul-soothing accordance in the driving, cavernous, radiant track which will definitely appeal to any fans of the Alt 90s sound.

Seen It All is available to stream and purchase via Bandcamp.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

The Ivins – Bloom: Affably Sonic Indie Alt Rock from Nashville with Love

The Ivins stirred up the Nashville sound with their Funk-riding take on Indie Alt Rock through their latest single ‘Bloom’. Expect sonic nuance and melodic angular hooks which will leave you lacerated as you fall into the sticky-sweet nectar which drips from their affably accessible sound.

With soaring choruses, tenderly imploring vocals which share the same soul-stroking propensity as the likes of Silversun Pickups, you can’t help getting engrossed by the familiar yet discernibly fresh mix of modern Indie and the timeless tones of the Alt 90s.

It’s hard to feel pessimisic about the future of the music industry when artists such as The Ivins offer such adrenalizing vitality in their sound. Get them on your radar.

Bloom is available to stream via Spotify.

Find out more about how The Ivins are disrupting the Nashville Rock scene with their sonic sound by heading over to their website.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

Simon Husbands pulls punches with their single ‘Fighting The Man’

Simon Husbands

‘Fighting The Man’ is the first track from Simon Husbands’ new debut album ‘POP’ – after “45 years of working with other artists”. As a taster for what’s to come it’s really rather good.

A classic ‘three-and-a-half minute’ pop song, all classic indie-rock in a supercharged 90’s Britpop/punk kind of way – Ash, maybe, Cast, or the Bluetones – with some classic rock flourishes to Husband’s Les Paul-swathed guitar playing, but there’s a definite Nick Cope of the much-missed Candyskins (and now the excellent CBeebies Nick Cope Popcast) to the vocals here, too.

‘POP’ the album is released on December 4th, but you can hear ‘Fighting The Man’ on Simon Husband’s website – and it’s a perfect taster for what’s to come.

Review by Alex Holmes

Music

Allan Dawson gives us a roadmap back to our sanity with the humbling Rock release ‘Bubble’

While many are despairing about the state that 2020 has left the industry in, artists such as Allan Dawson have been orchestrating maps back to our sanity by offering unifying releases such as the lead single “Bubble” from their latest album “Reflections of Your Face”.

The Colwyn Bay, North Wales-based artist, producer and engineer independently wrote, recorded and mastered Reflections of Your Face during lockdown. It poignantly encompasses our shared yearning for better times, all the while, Allan Dawson utilises the ability to spin a kaleidoscopic colour wheel which paints the human psyche and the multifaceted struggles which will all need to endure while we’re still breathing. While some songwriters are able to exhibit a candid and raw feel with their lyrics, Allan Dawson uses intricate emotional detail to create soundscapes which are simultaneously inspiring and humbling.

Everything from the tone of Allan Dawson’s reflective vocals to the steady pace of the masterfully orchestrated Rock n Roll licks allows you to sink into the production with ease and allow the sonorous feel of the single to convince you that you’re not alone with your lockdown frustration. Even if you want to stick a butter knife in your lockdown companion’s ear, you’ll get the consolation that your embittered mood is one shared globally.

If you could imagine what Nick Cave would sound like if they adopted a more Classic Rock approach and found a resounding amount of compassion, you’ll get an idea of what is in store when you press play on this cathartically comforting release.

You can check out Allan Dawson’s single Bubble along with the rest of their lockdown-born album Reflections of Your Face via Spotify, SoundCloud and Bandcamp.

 

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

8udDha bl0od serves up psychedelic dirt with their Alt Rock single ‘Nevermind’

https://music.apple.com/album/id/1539119804

Whereas 8udDah Bl0od’s previous couple of submissions have been instrumental compositions, ‘Nevermind’ is something different; a three-minute grooving, charming alt-rock number in the style of the Dandy Warhols, The Brian Jonestown Massacre, or Louis XIV.

It’s chilled and laid back, loose and psychedelic in feel with a sleazy, dirty guitar riff that’s almost reminiscent of Duke Erikson’s work with Garbage.

With a bohemian, filthy bassline and a properly salacious rock n’ roll backbeat, all topped by 8udDah bl0od’s trashy, disreputable sneered vocal, ‘Nevermind’ is a proper rock song, all attitude, snarl, and swagger. “I think it’s time I severed my ties” he sings on the chorus; on the basis of this track, he’d absolutely better stick around instead.

Hear ‘Nevermind’ on Apple Music.

Review by Alex Holmes

Music

‘American Villain’ is the fiery new Indie-Rock political track from Seattle-based singer-songwriter Rusty Reid

American Villain‘ is the fiery new Indie-Rock political track from Seattle-based singer-songwriter Rusty Reid as he shows his frustration and ultimately anger, with how the previous four years has gone in the USA.

Rusty Reid is a true singer-songwriter who has seen the ups and downs of the music industry. After early success in his career in various bands, he moved around a lot with stints in Houston and LA. After his music career unfortunately faltered out just after 9/11 due to a few factors, he retired from the game for over 10 years. Then, the creativity came back and the hunger to make music was burning inside.

This is a true American comeback story. This is a man who knows who he is deep inside and being totally honest is one of them.

“Shortly into Donald Trump’s term as president I realized that he is truly a villain. in every sense. He’s a liar. He’s a conman. He’s a chauvinist. He’s a racist. He’s homophobic. He’s anti-science. He’s anti-democratic. He’s a thug. He’s a thief.”- Rusty Reid

Rusty Reid sings about his true feeling on Donald Trump with his new single ‘American Villain‘. He connected the dots and soon realized that something was wrong. He went with his gut and releases a brave single that is all about how things have gone backwards in the country he loves. With a gritty voice, skillful guitar playing and lots of lyrics that cut deep into the truth, this is a singer to be admired.

Here is the Soundcloud link to hear more.

Reviewed by Llewelyn Screen

Music

KAIS has illuminated the airwaves with their sonically ensnaring Alt Rock track ‘Dark Side of the Light’

‘Dark Side of the Light’ is the latest single to be released from award-winning Middle Eastern Alt-Rock artist KAIS, who hasn’t just put his own name on the map, he was in the vanguard of pioneering artists who kickstarted the Indie Rock scene in Jordan.

Their latest single which dropped on November 11th, 2020 is a soul-laden intricate tonal tapestry, gently weaved together with elements of Indie Rock, Alt Rock and Psychedelic Soul.

With a conceptually meta approach to the lyricism, Dark Side of the Light hits just as hard lyrically as it does sonically. Without any overbearing literalism, Dark Side of the Light speaks of lost love and the longing which can cast us into the dark, making us all too aware of how love serves as the light while we’re left scorned in hindsight.

Lines such as “You know it’s a battle with sin” is a reminder that all relationships involve a battle against temptation. While “One side’s here to stay, one side’s gotta win” emphasizes the inescapable reality of romantic parallels.

The vulnerability in the lyrical admissions is lost to the volatility of the reverb-wrapped instrumentals which allow the sentiments to relay with resounding conviction.

You can listen to Dark Side of the Light which was recorded at KAIS’ recording studio, Hot Soap Studios, in Cyprus via Spotify

Review by Amelia Vandergast