Browsing Tag

Indie Soul

Canadian originator, Ethan Mark opened his jazzy neo-soul in his album ‘The Concept of You’

After teasing us title single from his 2022 album, The Concept of You, we eagerly awaited the full length of Ethan Mark’s sophisticated psychedelic-soul experimentalism.

With the opening single, The Unravelling of Every Day, equally as sublime as the openers on your favourite 90s Shoegaze albums (surely, everyone has some of those!), it is instantly affirmed what kind of production the Canadian artist constructed. One that is defined by its quiescence and the ability to hold your attention through the jazzy indie-soul juxtapositions.

Track 3, Gunslinger, is a trippy ethereal masterpiece, colourful enough to rival the fantasy-like escapism in tracks from Cosmo Sheldrake. Reminiscences fall by the wayside in the boundlessly experimental world music title single which breaks the monocultural mould with the percussion and throws in some flamenco guitars around the RnB grooves.

Not that The Concept of You has any skippable tracks, but special attention should be paid to Weight of it All. The lofty intricate work is a sublime pool of lyrical vulnerability, Avant-Garde ambience, and quintessential folk escapism. It is gravitas sonically personified.

Here is what Ethan Mark had to say on his album

“The Concept of You, and the upcoming album, came about from a challenge from my partner. She, a listener of neo-soul and jazz, challenged me to pare my usually elaborate and busy musical style down to something more organic, soulful, and pretty.

The result was a series of love songs encompassing many facets of love. The title single refers to her, the sepia-toned memories of summers, the roots we have put down together, and the love for home.

These themes felt especially important after a long period punctuated by isolation, introversion, and cabin fever. It’s accentuated by nylon guitar strings, cascading violins, gentle pianos, and the frailties of harmonised vocals.”

Concept of You is now available to stream on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

The JB Project spills vibration-raising soul in his indie psych single, ‘Hole for the Sun’

The JB Project (Justin Beaver) has picked up his trusty sunburst Fender Strat once more to lay down another dynamically psychedelic soft serenade. His latest single, Hole for the Sun, is just one of his constraintlessly constructed recent releases that allow emotion to flow organically. With the warmth that spills from his over-driven chords meeting the emotions pouring through his almost dream-like indie vocals, there’s no denying that Hole for the Sun delivers a transcendent touch.

We couldn’t help but adore the sheer ease of it. Hole for the Sun teases visceral grungey build ups before bringing even more catharsis and soulful humility. With the experimentalism to rival Pavement paired with the colourful accordance of the Beatles and the lyrical panache of Elliott Smith, it’s only a matter of time before the multi-instrumentalist, singer-songwriter and producer breaks into the mainstream with his unapologetically authentic sound. You don’t need his bio to tell you that he has a deeply emotional connection to music. Or that his MO is diluting negativity with his positivity-radiating sound. It is affirmed in seconds after you hit play. We can’t wait to hear what is lurking in The JB Project pipeline.

Hole for the Sun is now available to stream on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Leo breaks through the heartbreak in his indie-soul single, Helicopter Leaves

If you like your RnB fed through plenty of wobbly tape echo delay, the up and coming artist Leo’s latest single, Helicopter Leaves, is exactly the kind of hazy indie RnB pop catharsis you want to delve into. In sentiment, Helicopter Leaves is a bitter-sweet release that explores the memories and emotions shared with an ex, but Leo never bows to the melancholy; he keeps the tone as bright as his infectious optimism.

It was a bold move to try and make it with Leo as a mononym, but based on Helicopter Leaves, he has the right amount of talent and soulful warmth to do exactly that. If anyone is this generation’s answer to Jack Johnson, it is the 24-year old Massachusetts-hailing singer-songwriter that entrenches his work in his deep spirituality and determination to connect the dots that nature leaves creatives to play with.

Helicopter Leaves is now available to stream on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Spotlight Feature: KAIS is stripped-back and spiritual in his latest acoustic indie-soul-folk single, Healing

KAIS

KAIS bared his spiritual soul in his latest release Healing. The Canadian Cyprus-based singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer allowed his acoustic single to explore the deep significance of the messiness of our existence and our ability to clean up through bleeding, breathing and healing.

It is thanks to artists like KAIS, that the conversations around trauma have moved past idiomatic ignorance. Remember when we were all under the impression that PTSD existed solely in the minds of those that had experienced war? Thankfully, we now see it as a common experience; every ego-blow and mental scar imprinted leaves us with the option of carrying trauma or moving past it, and that is exactly what Healing forces you to reflect on. It’s enough to make you step in front of the mirror and check for scars that have been pushed into the subconscious.

With KAIS’ effortlessly artful vocals atop the acoustic guitar strings and nothing else to get in the way of the evocative impact of his lyrics that find a meta way to resonate as confessional, it is easily one of KAIS’ most powerful singles to date. As the perfect example, “fall from grace at god’s own pace I’m travelling through the fire, victim of desire” leaves so much more between the lines than your average lyrical confession for the way it alludes to the conflict between our situational emotion and desire.

For KAIS’ fans enamoured by his new venture into psychy indie-soul-folk, stay tuned for his upcoming EP that is due for release in February 2022. Healing was officially released on December 19th, 2021. It is now available to stream on Spotify.

Connect with KAIS to keep up to date on his new releases on Facebook and Instagram.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Kiani Alexandra – want u worse: prime your RnB pop playlists

Up and coming RnB artist Kiani Alexandra has released her soulfully-rendered latest single, want u worse; it’s packed with infectious pop potential, but you’ll fall just as hard for the lyrics as you will for the addictive melodies.

The lyric “I know you want me bad, but I want you worse” deserves a Grammy in itself. That’s just one of the clever vocals melodic hooks that appear in this high-vibe danceable earworm that explores some of the darkest emotions we will ever face in a way that leaves you instilled with euphoric emotion. Calling Kiani Alexandra an ingenious artist could never be considered to be hyperbolic.

want u worse is now available to stream and download on all major platforms via this link.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Indie art-rock meets RnB in Cael Dadian’s latest single, ‘this sucks’.

23-year-old singer-songwriter and producer Cael Dadian has been gracing the airwaves with his alternative take on RnB since 2017. His most recent work, such as his standout single, this sucks, is a testament to how much he has honed in on his sonic and lyrical talent in recent years. Along with creating radio-ready singles, he has also produced scores for brands such as Facebook and MAC Cosmetics.

Dadian’s plaintively rich vocals, that will be a hit with fans of Hozier, Jack Johnson and Ray Lamontagne, draw you right into the heart of the alt-RnB single that pulls in nuances of indie and art-rock. Instead of using the same old melodies that we’ve been overfed since the 90s in this sucks, Dadian’s instrumentals are just as gripping and intricate as Thom Yorke’s. The tender neo-classic touch to the keys flawlessly demonstrate Dadian’s virtuosic command of melody, that is sure to see him go far in 2021 and beyond.

this sucks is now available to stream via Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

I Won’t Change For You: Josh Dooz swims smartly away from the undesirable rocks on ‘Pink Coral’ (feat. Danni G)

With a positive attitude that has you smiling gleefully as others get stuck in their smoggy blinkers, Josh Dooz looks at things the right way as she slows down the rapid pace on ‘Pink Coral (feat. Danni G).

Josh Dooz is a motivated swimming fan and indie soul/pop singer-songwriter, who makes that groovy vibe that has you feeling so fresh and alive with ideas.

This is the heartfelt message of going against the popular flow no matter what the fake lifeguards say, as you duck under the undesirable waves and find your own way to the shore using your own intuition. You may get stung sometimes underwater when you least expect it — but staying patient with your head up and looking for that best way out — is the only way to be truly happy and away from the pollution of the streets.

They vocals seems to match so harmoniously and the mellow beat has you feeling warm inside like a new blanket that just feels so right with you cuddling real close. The chilled beat rinses away the sticky salt from your tired body and has you in a mood to discover — and do things you know are the right steps to climb up that ladder of life — into a loft that is best for you.

Pink Coral(feat. Danni G) from the soulful Josh Dooz, shows us into a world that soaks our curious imagination, as we are caressed into a song that tells you to express yourself, and to never live life to please anyone else. The day you win is when you stop that rat race — and do things that make you happy — as you know yourself well by now, and don’t worry about the small things.

Stream this smoothly salted single on YouTube and check out the IG for more.

Reviewed by Llewelyn Screen

Julianna Sweeney tells us like it is with her jazzy soul-pop single ‘all talk’

https://open.spotify.com/track/5amxgKuPmVRg2n4uh8bnzZ

With a sound so celestial it sounds like it has been pulled from the 5th dimension, it’s safe to say the lead single ‘all talk’ taken from Julianna Sweeney’s debut album ‘Exit Fo[u]r is stunning.

The 21-year-old singer-songwriter’s approach to jazzy soul pop will undoubtedly enamour fans of Joni Mitchell, Norah Jones and Carole King while arresting you with the originality of her sound. Nothing is forced, everything is effortless, at least on the surface there’s no diminishing the amount of nuanced skill in all talk. With smooth jazzy instrumental interludes between Julianna Sweeney’s vocals, there’s plenty of room in the soundscape to drink in the romantic frustration which transpires before you learn that actions speak louder than words.

You can check out Julianna Sweeney’s debut album for yourselves by heading over to Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

 

Benny Elom lays down ethereal soul in their indie jazz fusion single ‘I Do’

Essex, UK-residing Afroitalian R&B singer-songwriter, Benny Elom, has released their ethereally soulful single ‘I Do’ which unravels as an all too indulgent blend of RnB, jazz and soul.

The mellifluous single explores romantic uncertainty without lacing any bitterness or melancholy in the soundscape, instead, through their humility, the artist reminds us how pure love can be. With his affably honeyed lyricism, his mesmerising vocal timbre and the sense of modernity which he brings through jazz fusion, Benny Elom’s sound is a recipe for success.

You can check out Benny Elom’s latest single which officially released on February 5th via SoundCloud.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

 

 

Takar Nabam – A Crime: Transcendentally Sweet Sun-Soaked Alt-Soul

Takar Nabam

Indian Singer-songwriter and composer, Takar Nabam, is set to unleash their genre-defying transcendentally sweet single ‘A Crime’ on the airwaves, for your own sake, hit play on this soul-filling winter warmer.

Elements of Funk, Reggae, Soul, Pop and Indie all meld in the entrancing soundscape which won’t fail to arrest your rhythmic pulses as you listen to the woozy sun-soaked tones effervescing under Takar Nabam’s vocals which will serenade any fans of John Mayer and Steven Wilson.

Not only is A Crime a discernibly radio-ready single. It also packs in enough nuance and virtuosity to appease any serious guitar-led-music aficionados. Guitar Magazine recognised Takar Nabam as one of the top 5 guitar players in 2020, we’re seriously inclined to agree.

You’ll have to wait a little longer before you can check out A Crime. In the meantime, head on over to the artist’s official website and explore their previous releases.

 

Review by Amelia Vandergast