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singer-songwriter

Music Pop

Narley Tree puts a warming funk twist on their indie pop-rock debut ‘In Your Head’

Soul pop fans are going to want to pay attention to Narley Tree’s debut indie single, ‘In Your Head’,  which comes with a warming funk twist while never compromising on the international commercial potential. After spending years as a session guitarist, founding member and singer-songwriter, Alex decided to release their debut; based on In Your Head, he was well overdue.

With a Maroon 5-style level of smooth, In Your Head is an intimate declaration of affection sweetened by high-octane power-pop melodies. By switching from dreamy grooves to massive pop-rock choruses, In Your Head offers everything you could possibly ask for. But if that wasn’t enough, Narley Tree will be releasing their forthcoming debut EP – you’ll want them on your radar before that drops.

To fully appreciate In Your Head, head over to YouTube and check out the official music video that premiered on February 12th.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music Pop

Swipe right on Coupdekat’s latest synth-pop single, ‘Love Online’.

https://soundcloud.com/kat-reilly-1/love-online

UK-based singer-songwriter Coupdeka brought narrative pop to the next level with her latest single, Love Online, which optimistically captures the potential for love during Covid times, even if it has to be digital.

Under the influence of 80s indie icons such as Mazzy Star, The Slits and Blondie, Coupdekat brought a comforting feeling of familiarity to the track as she runs through the dystopic pitfalls of dating in 2021; if you know, you know. And if you know, you’ll undoubtedly find plenty of resonance in lyrics such as “we only make love online”.

Any fans of The Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Shiny Toy Guns will appreciate Coupdekat’s indie approach to contemporary pop with Love Online.

You can hear Coupdekat via SoundCloud.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

Dylan Walker drops his debut single, the chilled love-song ‘All I Need Is You’

It’s not often that bible quotes spring readily to mind when reviewing new music, but “when I was a child, I spoke and thought and reasoned as a child. But when I grew up, I put away childish things” could easily be the tag-line for ‘All I Need Is You’, Dylan Walker’s debut self-penned single.

An ex-childhood tennis prodigy and professional player turned musician and songwriter, 20-something Dylan Walker’s opener is a beautiful, gentle mellow little acoustic-guitar-and-vocal-led ballad to love, loss, and the understanding that the important things in life aren’t – as he puts it – ‘…fancy things/ like fast cars and grand clothes and diamond rings’, but the love and support of those close to us. Dylan Walker’s voice is soft, lilting, almost falsetto at times, carrying the message of the lyrics beautifully over the chilled melodic backing. It’s a strong, confident debut, and bodes well for Dylan Walker in the future, with two more singles – ‘Life Began With You’ and ‘We Are Meant To Be’ slated for release later this year on Happy Sloth Records.

‘All I Need Is You’ is out now across all major streaming platforms; you can check it out on Spotify now.

Review by Alex Holmes

Music Pop

Mike Cortes – the New York-based musician/writer drops first solo single with ‘Unstable’

Mike Cortes

‘Unstable’ is the first single from newcomer Mike Cortes, but he’s far from new to ‘the scene’; with a publishing deal and writing credits for numerous other artists over the last six years, this is Cortes putting everything he’s learned in the last six years into practice for himself, with a gentle little dance-pop track. Part Hispanic-beat, part soft, catchy pop chorus, held together by Cortes’ high, sing-song vocal. It’s a great little opener, a perfect radio-friendly pop track, dance beats mixing with a bouncy skank groove bassline and choppy guitar-and-keys chords – there’s a touch of Deanz, Tommy Ljungberg, Aiyo, or Blaeker. It’s a track that promises much, much more from Mike Cortes.

Check out Mike Cortes on Facebook and Instagram.

Review by Alex Holmes

Music

Kevin Neary invites the lost to find themselves in ‘Hopelessly True’

It feels like there’s been a seismic infusion of soul-baring sincerity on the airwaves since the pandemic began, yet, not many candid tracks can hold a candle to Kevin Neary’s, ‘Hopelessly True’.

If a global pandemic isn’t enough to make you feel lost and uncertain, I don’t know what is, so for those feeling disjointed and deflated; you’ll find plenty of comfort in Hopelessly True. The indie folk-pop offers an impossible-to-resist feeling of solidarity which is enough to remind the listener that feeling lost is part of the journey – metaphorically and literally.

The 25-year-old Irish singer-songwriter has picked up plenty of accolades and acclaim for his unique yet distinctly familiar style. With the same tender magnetism as Tom Odell, Hozier and Paulo Nutini, his sound that stemmed from busking roots soon feels like home.

You can check out the animated music video via YouTube, or you can add the track to your Spotify playlists.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

Keeping Things Real: Genevieve Zamora drops the excellent new single ‘No BS’ (feat. Gifted)

With her soul alive and feeling extra creative, Genevieve Zamora is back with the top shelf new hip-hop/RnB laced single called ‘No BS(feat. Gifted).

Renowned audio engineer, singer-songwriter, online class educator and proud owner of Southern Royalty Studio in Albuquerque, New Mexico; Genevieve Zamora makes music that helps you relate to real life, as we all go through ups and downs whilst desperately needing that heart-warming uplifting feeling that helps things be better again, after a cold winter of chaos.

After being married for twenty years and having two beloved children, she has decided to get more of her music out there to the world and this feels like a renaissance to see what else there is to achieve. Her creative juices are flowing over the top of the waves and you can just sense that she doesn’t ever back down from any challenge.

This is the story of showing that you don’t play any games and this what you do is for real, you don’t have time for seeing those fake sharks bite themselves on social media while doing nothing of substance, as you are making things happen and keeping life legit.

She sings with such class and the raps bounce perfectly on a crisply produced beat that has you nodding your head, whilst your body just wants to dance and get into the mood.

No BS’ (feat. Gifted) from the inspiring and multi-talented Genevieve Zamora, is a sign of things to come from a woman who knows what she wants. Everything screams quality here and the subject matter is real, which is a welcome curve away from the usual overly embellished stories on the airwaves, that has you questioning their morals. Keeping things in reality is what this whole project is all about after all.

Stream this new track on Spotify and check out the IG for more.

Reviewed by Llewelyn Screen

Music Pop

Mikaela Seegers & KOLA take us on a cinematic journey with ‘Inside Out’.

You’d be hard-pressed to find a more captivatingly heartfelt pop track that hit the airwaves in 2021 than Mikaela Seegers & KOLA’s single, ‘Inside Out’, which was co-written and produced by Karan Wadhwa for his short film, ‘THE DUO’. You’ll also be able to see Wadhwa’s work in the official Inside Out music video. With every progression in Inside Out, you’ll be as emotionally connected as you are rhythmically arrested in the cinematic release. Paired with the music video, Inside Out is enough to swallow your consciousness entirely.

Mikaela Seegers’ pop vocals spill poetic imagery to paint a picture of a tainted, torrid romance with affection as KOLA’s rap bars lay down harsh unfiltered truths to provide powerful duality. It’s a single which gets better with every listen; one that compels you to squeeze every ounce of powerful meta wisdom from it.

You can check out the official video to Inside Out that has already garnered 23,000+ streams since its premiere on February 26th via YouTube.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music Pop

Singer-songwriter Abby Lokelani has made an ethereal debut with ‘Morning Glory’.

Boston-based Berklee scholar, multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter Abby Lokelani made her 2021 debut with the single ‘Morning Glory’; it speaks so personally you may just feel interrogated by the questioning lyrics.

With a semi-orchestral arrangement searing beneath Abby Lokelani’s vocals and finding synergy with the quiescent finger-picked guitar strings, there’s a sonically ethereal air to Morning Glory which amps up the evocative charge of the image-conjuring lyrics.

Any fans of Daughter, London Grammar and Deerhunter will want to take the time to delve into this promising exhibition of multifaceted talent which we hope to hear much more of in 2021 and beyond.

Morning Glory is available to stream on all major platforms via this link.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music Pop

Classically trained London singer-songwriter Libby Phippard has released her latest single, ‘Please Don’t Ask Me to Stay’.

Libby Phippard

London singer-songwriter Libby Phippard’s latest single, ‘Please Don’t Ask Me to Stay’ is the kind of revival needed to keep classical music relevant in 2021.

With her operatic training, background in classical music and tendency to draw influence from everyone from Hozier to Ariana Grande, her latest ballad is a theatrical release that doesn’t allow any of the pain of a relationship expiring to hide behind smoke and mirror. Instead, it bridges the gap between those grandiose lovesongs that have always been around and the common experience of romantic duality.

It is criminal for singles such as Please Don’t Ask Me to Stay to be relegated to soundtracks. If society can see the beauty in acts such as Daughter and Tom Odell, there’s no reason why the same affection can’t be found in Libby Phippard’s timeless sound.

Please Don’t Ask Me to Say is due for official release on March 12th. You can check it out for yourselves by heading over to SoundCloud. Head over to the artist’s official website for more info.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Music

Damian – gentle melancholy with ‘Can’t Have You’

Continuing this week’s theme of hot Australian artists come singer-songwriter, actor, and model Damian. Performing since the age of 8 in one form or another, Damian is perhaps best known for the TV series ‘Deep Water’ and indie film festival shorts ‘The Paper Rose’, ‘Pepper’, and ‘Absolutes’, and for his debut single ‘Perfect To Me’.

Damian now returns with follow-up ‘Can’t Have You’, a delicately picked acoustic guitar-and-vocal paean to unrequited love in the balladic style of early Ed Sheeran, James Bay, Lukas Graham, or Hozier. It’s gentle, soulful, and melancholic in that ‘wistful hopefulness’ sort of way that adds a dash of sad world-weariness without ever slipping into melodrama or schmalz. Damian’s voice lifts and falls but carries that sense of longing and desire atop the graceful picked guitar chords and backing; it’s a beautiful pairing.

Hear ‘Can’t Have You’ on Spotify, and follow Damian on Facebook and Instagram.

Review by Alex Holmes