Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Victor Furbacken: Somebody Help




35-year-old Gothenburg based musician Victor Furbacken spent his formative years in a Parisian suburb, but went to high school in the southern region of Skåne, majoring in music and fully absorbing himself into the world of jazz. An acclaimed bass player in Sweden, Furbacken played in a number of constellations before delving into songwriting and finding his own voice with the release of the excellent four-track debut EP 'In the Rain' in the fall of 2015.

On the beautiful new single "Somebody Help"  the listener is taken along on a 5:14 long yet all too brief otherworldly musical road trip that is perfectly complemented by the stellar video, co-directed by Furbacken and Nils Dahl.

I close with a statement by the artist himself:


I was always intrigued by language, storytelling and poetry since an early age, and I attribute it mainly to French schooling which presented me with a lot of the classics in their tradition. I was lucky in that I had many enthusiastic and good teachers who saw my curiosity and really did 'beat' this interest into me, which I am deeply thankful for today. English isn´t my mother tongue but it's actually been a constant in my life since I met the language through music early on and it did not leave me when I relocated. This is why I've turned to English in my writing so far. Early memories of school were encounters with imagery and stories that really caught my attention. I loved many styles but my writing is probably quite influenced by French Symbolists like Rimbaud, Baudelaire, Verlaine but also by English poets like Blake, Elliott, Poe or even Joyce, who I believe all share a common fascination for darkness, life and death, love, absurdity and humor.




https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/somebody-help/id1253392903?i=1253392906

https://www.facebook.com/victorfurbackenofficial/






Friday, July 7, 2017

LANY: Good Girls




L.A. based trio LANY is one of the hardest working bands in the business, having done 229 shows in the past 30 months. The rest of 2017 is shaping up to be just as busy: Currently doing the festival circuit, they have a tight fall tour schedule with a string of North American dates September 25 - November 12, a single festival appearance in Mexico City the weekend after, followed by seventeen gigs in continental Europe and the UK between November 27 and December 20.

Their latest video accompanies the outstanding track "Good Girls" off their self-titled sixteen-track debut full-length, released June 30 on Polydor. The simple yet highly effective clip was directed by L.A. film maker Joel Knoernschild and seamlessly continues the obsessive love narrative from the January 2017 video created for the superb 2016 hit single "ILYSB" (Note: That video was not directed by Knoernschild; unfortunately I haven't yet been able to find info out who did.)

LANY members Paul Jason Klein (a former model from Tulsa, Oklahoma) Jake Goss and Leslie Priest (both from Nashville) may not have grown up in Los Angeles like the Beach Boys, but they may as well have. And like the BB, they have expertly crafted a gorgeous signature sound, sunny but with hints of dark skies. I will even go as far as saying that LANY's debut album is Pet Sounds for the 21st century. Like that seminal 1966 collection of brilliant pop songs, its 2017 counterpart perfectly captures the essence of the both eternally seductive and maddening Southern California.



https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/lany/id1209353900

http://thisislany.com/tour

https://www.facebook.com/thisislany

http://www.joelknoernschild.com/






Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Elkkle: Diderot




22-year-old Australian artist Callum Baker aka elkkle grew up on Phillip Island of Hemsworth brothers and penguin fame. Picking up the guitar at 13, his true moment of inspiration arrived in 2011 when hearing beat maker friend Jack Vanzet aka producer Thrupence, now signed to Future Classic. Relocating to Melbourne in 2012, he became a music composition major at the Victorian College of the Arts after impressing with tracks made at home using Ableton Live production software.

In August 2015 an excellent four-track EP was released with fellow Melbourne producer/singer-songwriter Elle Graham aka Woodes. His solo debut came last fall with the stellar singles "Soft Erasure" and "Don't Look Down".

This month he dropped the superb single "Diderot". Inspired by the concept 'the Diderot Effect', elkkle himself describes it as being essentially a heart break song, but one which seeks to "step away from stories that overromantise or use hyperbole to make them engaging, in favor of a more documented form."

The video by director Rex Kane-Hart, a longtime friend and frequent collaborator, is exceptional, perfectly matching the refreshingly playful, constantly surprising, and utterly hypnotic soundscape created by elkkle.

Three shows supporting Max Byrne aka acclaimed Brisbane producer Golden Vessel are coming up this week and next week.

NOTE: Golden Vessel's single "Shoulders" featuring elkkle and 18-year-old Brisbane female singer-rapper Mallrat was released June 9.

Melbourne: June 29, Workers Club
Brisbane: June 30, The Foundry
Sydney: July 6, Brighton Up Bar



https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/diderot-single/id1248231886?app=itunes&ign-mpt=uo%3D4

http://www.songkick.com/artists/8296218-elkkle/calendar

https://www.facebook.com/elkklemusic

https://soundcloud.com/elkkle

https://elkkle.bandcamp.com/music

https://rexkane-hart.com/






Monday, June 19, 2017

Melissa McMillan: Frail Ground + Shade




Brooklyn based singer-songwriter Melissa McMillan graduated from the University of North Texas with a music degree before moving to NYC and picking up composing. An in-demand session
singer, she eventually formed her own band and released a stellar six-track self-titled debut EP in 2015. 

On March 16 she performed a new and stunning song of hers entitled "Frail Ground" at the Chord Club on the Upper East Side as part of the ongoing Sofar concert series; the clip was uploaded to the Sofar YouTube channel June 14.  Note: The stellar guitarist is Brad Allen Williams.

McMillan's flawless live vocals are as mesmerizing as the ones she delivers in the recording studio: the most recent example is the dreamlike video accompanying the beautiful track "Shade" uploaded to Vimeo in October of last year by the director Aaron Vazquez. 

No gigs are scheduled at this point, but check her website and FB now and then for announcements.



https://www.facebook.com/melissamcmillanmusic

http://www.melissamcmillanmusic.com/live/

https://itunes.apple.com/dk/album/melissa-mcmillan-ep/id981388620?ign-mpt=uo%3D4%26amp%3Buo%3D4

https://melissamcmillan.bandcamp.com/releases

https://vimeo.com/bluecamelot  (director Aaron Vazquez)












Monday, June 12, 2017

Dua Lipa: Lost In Your Light (Featuring Miguel)




Dua Lipa has a very busy concert schedule that stretches into next year. Currently performing at summer festivals, she kicks off her fall tour October 5 in Brighton and wraps up a month later in London; in between is a string of gigs in continental Europe, including Scandinavia. In late February/early March she has four shows at the Spark Arena in Auckland.

The 21-year-old London native with Kosovar-Albaian parents dropped her self-titled debut full-length earlier this month. The sixth single off the album is the irresistible "Lost in Your Light" which features Miguel and was co-written by him as well.  The video perfectly matches the floating-on-a-cloud vibe; the clip was shot in L.A, but no word on who directed it.


https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/dua-lipa/id1227678117

https://www.facebook.com/dualipaofficial/app/308540029359/?ref=page_internal






Sunday, May 28, 2017

The Charlatans: Plastic Machinery




The Charlatans dropped their 13th full-length 'Different Days' this week: the low-budget teaser video for the outstanding track "Plastic Machinery" was published a month ago.

Among the contributors on the album are The Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr, New Order drummer Stephen Morris and Paul Weller.

Shows:

- Tonight, lead singer Tim Burgess and guitarist Mark Collins will be doing an acoustic set at the annual Sound City festival in Liverpool.

- Tomorrow, the band has a gig at Rough Trade East in London.

- So far, four summer festival appearances are on the schedule for June, July and August.

- On November 29 the band kick off their UK fall tour in Nottingham; it wraps up in Belfast December 11. (There is also a show in Dublin on December 10).  


https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/different-days/id1220549285

http://www.thecharlatans.net/#gigs

https://www.facebook.com/thecharlatans







Saturday, May 20, 2017

Nick Hakim: Roller Skates + Bet She Looks Like You




Three years after dropping the excellent two-part EP 'Where Will We Go', singer-songwriter Nick Hakim has released his twelve-track debut full-length 'Green Twins'. The 26-year-old Washington D.C native graduated Berklee College of Music in Boston before relocating to Brooklyn in 2013 and it's here that he seems to have truly found his own voice.

On the new album, the soul influences are still there, but more layers, reverb and distortion have been added into the musical cauldron by Hakim and collaborator/Berklee classmate Andrew Sarlo. In "Roller Skates", Hakim has created a trippy soundscape with echoes of a late Beatles period/early solo career John Lennon. On "Bet She Looks Like You" he whips up a frothy, mad bartender cocktail of Motown and Hendrix with a pinch of country. The result is beautiful and gutsy.

The superb, tragic-comic animated video accompanying "Roller Skates" so perfectly compliments the song one would think Hakim and Kansas-based director/musician Micah Buzan were in the same room when it was made.

Fellow Brooklyn artist creative Terence Nance directed the video for "Bet She Looks Like You". I personally don't feel this clip serves the song very well. But to each their own.

Tour:
Tonight he's performing at Rock & Roll Hotel in D.C.
October 14:  ALC Festival in Austin.
June 9: the Natural History Museum in Los Angeles.
June 12: Amoeba Records, L.A.
In early November he returns to the UK for five shows.

Other interesting facts: His mother is from Peru, his father is from Chile. Both of his brothers are musicians. He teaches and mentors kids and teens in NYC.  He has spoken openly about struggling in school where he was placed in special ed classes from second to tenth grade, in great part due to his dyslexia.



https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/green-twins/id1199752694

https://www.facebook.com/nickhakimmusic/app/123966167614127/?ref=page_internal

http://www.micahbuzan.com/roller-skates-animation/

http://terencenance.com/work/