On The Stereo: July 2021
We hear the latest sonic delights from Elan Tamara, George Harrison, RXTH, Robert Grace, KYTES, Buffalo Nichols, GRAMN and more
THEN YOU SAY BY ELAN TAMARA
Then You Say is the latest single from Elan Tamara and it might just be the Hackney artist’s finest offering yet. The soulful bare-bones vocal adds a rawness which contrasts and compliments the song’s electronic flesh.
BRAVEHEART BY RXTH
Braveheart by RXTH proves that the Sussex songwriter is just as happy swimming in the mainstream as she is diving into dark waters. There’s still plenty of invention and intrigue accompanying this poppy search for a deeper connection.
NEGATIVE INSTINCT BY BINDING SPELL
Coming across like a slightly more melodic Protomartyr, Negative Instinct is powerful post-punk. The work of Washington, DC, artist Binding Spell (Roger Poulin), the impellent rhythm section provides some serious horsepower.
SAY NO MORE BY DUKE HUGH AND BRYONY JARMAN-PINTO
Rhythmic soul-jazz that gets you swaying, Say No More is the latest cut from London-based singer-songwriter Bryony Jarman-Pinto and Dutch producer Duke Hugh. Never staying in the same place for too long, the track takes you on a sensual journey of discovery.
THE THOUGHT OF LOSING YOU BY MT. MISERY
With its beautiful piano opening breaking out into instrumental tributaries, Mt. Misery’s The Thought Of Losing You is the type of wistful tune you can imagine Elton and Bernie writing the morning after an evening spent in Laurel Canyon. Dazzling stuff from the Hartlepool trio.
SELF BY ROBERT GRACE
A laidback pop groove helps Self by Robert Grace drift along gently. The darker lyrics provide something of a dangerous undercurrent though and the guest vocals of Emma Steinbakken highlight that we all have our own troubled rivers to cross.
STANDING IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ROAD BY LINDA VARG
When it comes to pop, we know that Swedish musicians know best. The latest case in point comes from Linda Varg whose new single Standing In The Middle Of The Road is as catchy as it is empowering. Bold production, impassioned vocals and unforgettable melodies… this one ticks all the right boxes.
COSMIC EMPIRE BY GEORGE HARRISON
A slight change of tack this morning, but we couldn’t ignore this one. A demo that didn’t make the cut from the All Things Must Pass days, listening to Cosmic Empire is like getting a peek at George Harrison’s voice notes and we love it.
WHAT LUCK, GOODBYE BY JOE TAYLOR SUTKOWSKI
Overflowing with the essence of Elephant 6, What Luck, Goodbye is an emo-pop pachyderm from New Jersey-born/Brooklyn-based musician Joe Taylor Sutkowski. There’s beautiful imagery weaved through this strikingly simple guitar song.
EVERYTHING IS SLOW MOTION BY MIA PIXLEY
Twinkling piano competes with an eerie cello on Mia Pixley’s musical tale of racial injustice. Slowly though, as Everything Is Slow Motion builds and more instruments join, there’s a growing sense of harmony, union and even hope that, by addressing the past, we can move on together.
WE’RE JUST FRIENDS BY CHERYM
There’s something very pure about the positivity that bursts out of We’re Just Friends by rising Derry power-pop trio CHERYM. A celebration of relationships past, present and future, it’s a song that makes you want to throw your arms around the one you love before rocking out together.
ALL BY NOHA SARÉ
We’re bringing you some alt-pop from Amsterdam this morning in the shape of All by Noha Saré. Weaving her musings on a toxic through a catchy beat and some intricate guitar work, the contrast between the uplifting melody and darker themes make for a compelling listen.
THE BEAT IS ON HOLD BY KYTES
The Beat Is On Hold, the new single from Kytes, is the type of lively indie-pop we’ve come to expect (and love) from the Munich-based quartet. With banana bread, home workouts and daily walks all making an appearance, it’s also a tongue-in-cheek documentary of life in lockdown.
I WOULD SING ALONG BY KAREN PERIS
The new solo single from Karen Peris, I Would Sing Along finds the singer-songwriter embracing feelings of childhood wonder. After the gentle first minute, the beat kicks in, the sound grows fuller and this song gracefully carries you back to a more innocent time.
CLASS WAR (HOW MUCH) BY SHE DREW THE GUN
Railing against the political corruption which seems to be accepted as a part of everyday life, Class War (How Much) is the latest clarion call from psych-punk artist She Drew The Gun. This empowering poke in the eye balances Louisa Roach’s sprechgesang delivery with a peppy bassline.
ANOTHER GIRL’S MAN BY ALICE SK
Bristling with noir country. Another Girl’s Man is the latest stirring effort from Londoner, Alice SK. The tale of a relationship turned sour, there’s plenty of unsettling intrigue in this track as it shuffles along in the shadows.
GLOW UP BY GRAMN
Hackney-based collective Gramn are back with their new song Glow Up. With its alluring Spanish-language opening, dancehall pulse and glistening splashes of synth, it’s a big step forward for the DIY soul outfit.
KNIGHT IN SHINING ARMOUR BY ROSENBLUME
Knight In Shining Armour by Liverpudlian troubadour Rosenblume, has something of a classic heart beating beneath its skin. Drawing from influences like Van Morrison and James Taylor, there’s still enough of his own identity to make this song shine.
GREAT DESOLATION BY GENTLE STRANGER
Featuring the best use of kazoo since Jimi Hendrix’s Cross Town Traffic, the lyrics to Great Desolation came to Gentle Stranger frontman Tom Harwick-Allan during a walk through central London. This is ramshackle indie of the very highest order.
LOST & LONESOME BY BUFFALO NICHOLS
The lead single from his upcoming album, Lost & Lonesome is a showcase for blues musician Buffalo Nichols’ intricate guitar playing and aching vocals. A neat blend of gravel and honey, this one goes down easy.
MAGNOLIA BLUES BY VICTORIA
Victoria’s unsettlingly powerful Magnolia Blues has hugely heightened our expectations ahead of the release of new album A Southern Gothic next month.
Words: Duncan Haskell