Vérité – “Gesture”

29 Apr

Verite

We’re fast running out of superlatives for Vérité. The New York based popstar has been rocking our world for the last couple of years with her intelligent, emotional and infectious pop. The Echo and Sentiment EPs were outstanding and her forthcoming Living EP is another brilliant collection of cracking songs.

We’ve already had the fabulous ”Underdressed” and “Constant Crush” and today Vérité is sharing “Gesture”. Like an once famous ambassador, she is really spoiling us.

Lyrically evocative we see her sitting amongst the debris of a night before, bedsheets strewn and scattered as she sings. “Gesture” is a bit more stripped back than its predecessors, reflecting the exposed emotion within, focusing more on the rhythm than the melody. The vocal, as ever, is gorgeous as she sings amidst this scene of relationship disrepair. It is, like Vérité herself, fantastic.

”Gesture” is taken from the forthcoming “Living” EP which is due out on 6 May and will be available fromiTunes.


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Alice Jemima – “Liquorice”

27 Apr

Alice Jemima

If it seems like an absolute age since we last featured Alice Jemima (when we tipped her for big things in 2013) that’s because it is. Back then she was coming off a fairly prolific 2012 when she released an EP, recorded a Radio1 session and was about to blow up on Soundcloud with her Blackstreet cover.

Since then it has been near silence from the lady with the sugar sweet vocals, and with good reason, she’s been working crazy hard. Now signed to the esteemed Sunday Best label, Alice has just been announced as appearing at the forthcoming Radio1 Big Weekend in Exeter. More importantly, she has been working on music. There’s an EP due in June and an album to follow and at last, we have a new tune to indulge in.

And indulge is the right word. It may be that cookies are a sometimes food but Alice’s “Liquorice” (the title track of the aforementioned EP) is an always listen. That simple but compelling bassline blended with the piano is head noddingly lovely and Alice’s intricate wordplay sets the tongue tingling.

She’s explained that “Liquorice” is “a song about trying to please other people, and then drifting off into this imaginary world to try and please yourself. With a tooth as sweet as ours and a sound as delicious as Alice’s, we’re escaping to this imaginary world with her.

The ‘Liquorice’ EP is due out on 17 June via Sunday Best Recordings and is available to pre-order here.


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HEZEN – “The Girl You Want” (video)

26 Apr

HEZEN

Rising up from the ground like a majestic, supernatural force come to envelop us all, HEZEN has us transfixed and entirely under her spell. Heady from the soft, intoxicating vocals that permeate into our soul like some dark magic, we sway with the melody, a slave to its sinister beauty. “The Girl You Want” is a remarkable debut from this relative newcomer and one that has left us entirely enchanted and beholden to it.

We say relative newcomer, this isn’t really London-based French producer and songwriter Sarah Hezen’s first rodeo. There was a Tame Impala cover a few weeks back (to introduce this new project) and she provided vocals for an Icicle track a couple of years ago. There’s also a hint of former solo work but looking for that online is like looking for needles in a haystack. That’s not important now though, what is important is the incredible sensual and intense sounds she is making now.

“The Girl You Want” smoulders and bewitches. It’s smoky and seductive with more than just a hint of danger. The rhythms and strings build the drama menacingly. They swell into an overriding sense of foreboding. Like the impending doom about to befall a much loved Game of Thrones character, they’re powerful and stark.

Her voice, by contrast, is soft and crystalline. It floats, beautifully, stunningly even, juxtaposed with this sinister danger. The lightness and purity of the vocal acting as a counter to the darkness, the weight and torment of the melody.

The visuals, which came to Sarah in a dream, are haunting and hypnotic. Coupled with this breathtaking song, it’s a potent combination and one that has knocked us off our feet. Seemingly coming from nowhere, Sarah Hezen has arisen and enslaved us.

HEZEN’s debut EP, ‘STIGMA’, will be released in June.



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Jimi Charles Moody – “Turns To Gold”

21 Apr

Jimi Charles Moody

One thing on the Alphabet Bands Bucket List is to hire a Winnebago and drive across the USA. East to West, North to South. We’ll explore everywhere and everything, stopping off at landmarks aplenty, places of historical importance and taking in the local culture and music. As we drive down I65, through Kentucky, Tennessee, Indiana and the like, “Turns To Gold” is the kind of tune we’d expect to hear.

It brings to mind that kind of road trip where you’d pull off to a dusty old shed-like bar for a beer and a rest. As you drink and recuperate, in the corner is a man, could even be Jimi Charles Moody, playing his guitar and singing his bluesy love songs.

On “Turns To Gold” the piano dances like an eye twinkling with the memory of the one that got away while the riffs grind and growl with regret. It’s cinematic, world-weary but almost upbeat. More languid in style than the dirt-under-the-fingernails stompy-ness of ”The House Of Moody”, it’s more knowing, more lived in.

It’s the kind of sound that steals time from you. We’d sit in that bar listening and all of a sudden hours would have passed by without us realising. All the while Jimi sings, his vocal smooth and welcoming like the cold beer we’ve already had one too many of. This random bar better have a room, looks like we’re here for the night.


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Aquilo – “Silhouette”

20 Apr

Aquilo

In recent posts we’ve noted that the artists featured, Vérité and Black Honey, pretty much haven’t put a foot wrong since their debuts. Another act of whom that is true is Aquilo. Originally from the Lake District, the pair have followed up their fourth place finish in this year’s Blog Sound poll with news of a debut album due later in 2016 and a gorgeous new track, “Silhouette”.

Typically it is rather wonderful, with its deft, gradual build from whisper soft loveliness into a soft yet powerful crescendo. They are so brilliantly adept at weaving delicate threads of intimacy and fragility into their music and “Silhouette” is no different. It is heart stoppingly magical, a real ‘lighters in the air’ track that just continues their run of stunning songs.

It’s the kind of song you would kill to hear performed live with a full orchestral backing.

Someone needs to make that happen. Please.

Stalk Aquilo: Website / Facebook / Twitter

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