Tag Archives: Dream Pop

Summer Heart – “Thinkin of U”

9 Jan

Summer Heart Thinkin of U

If there is someone out there making music that sounds more like it was made to soundtrack a bright, hot and fun holiday adventure than Summer Heart, then we are yet to find them. As the rain pours outside and people huddle in their winter coats to guard against the wind and cold, David Alexander once again comes to the rescue with a track that makes you feel the warm beat of the sun on your face.

If, as many people do these days, you are planning on taking a go-pro camera with you on holiday and making a video of your time away with your friends (you know what we mean, stick it out the car as you drive along, shots of your group laughing and messing around in shops, on walks, by the pool etc) then “Thinkin of U” is your soundtrack.

It’s hazy, bright, light and fun sounding. It’s got that heat sheen synth sound we love so much and a gently insistent and uptempo beat. The vocals are have been fuzzed up to match the shimmering brightness of the melody and it is, as you’d expect, the musical equivalent of a beautiful blue sky. Sure it’s a bit sentimental, ”It’s been six years / Since I first saw you / It’s been six years / Still I adore you” but isn’t all great pop music at heart? Besides, we reckon you’ll be too busy basking in its warm glow to even notice.

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Ocean Calling – “White Light”

30 Jul

Ocean Calling

Back in March, Sophie Wilkie reeled us in with nothing more than a quirky and gorgeous pronunciation of the word ‘snow’. That and the superbly evocative song “Desert Sky Scarlet” that contained it.

Having taken us off on a grand adventure around the world, Sophie is back as Ocean Calling and the travel bug has clearly bitten her again, “The open road is calling /out our name / let’s leave tonight” she sings. With a gleam in her eye she smiles and reaches out to us and we can’t help but raise our hand to hers to be whisked off once more.

“White Light” has a gorgeously mid-nineties pop feel to it, dream pop before we knew what dream pop was, like a modern dubstar but with more grandeur and beauty laden within. Her lyrical imagery is exquisite, capturing the breathtaking magnificence of nature. The world around us is majestic and Ocean Calling wants us to experience it, share it and love it. If nothing else, she is making us want to travel and you can be sure that as we ride the train, boat, truck, elephant to wherever and everywhere that it will be her music providing the soundtrack.

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Ghosts In Daylight – “Paper Heart” (video)

28 Apr

Ghosts In Daylight

There are a number of things that we here at Alphabet Bands are suckers for, one is dreamy electro pop with floaty melodies and another is a slightly weird looking and well made video. Come to us with either of those and there’s a reasonable chance that we will like what you’ve got and want to feature you. Come to us with both of those and well, you’re pretty much a shoe in. As if to prove our own point, today we are bringing you a kind of freaky looking video for a soft and mellifluous slice of dreampop from newcomers, Ghosts In Daylight.

Taken from their debut EP of the same name, “Paper Heart” is four minutes of smooth synths and delicate, probing vocals from Meme Love that swirl around your mind like some kind of wispy magic. They entice and ensnare the listener just as the videos subject is lured and captivated by the mysterious heart faced woman. Seriously.

Shot by Anna Calvi collaborator Emma Nathan, the video is a wonderfully dark, surreal and bewitching smorgasbord of fantastical elements; stop-motion, live action, reverse shots and a wickedly enigmatic character. Its low luminosity perfectly complements the smooth electronics on a track that somehow manages to feel quite vintage yet very modern. It’s pop music with an elegantly cinematic vibe that nudges, probes, ebbs and flows. It drifts effortlessly into your consciousness where it will rest and remain for the days to come, the vocals caressing your weary angst ridden mind into a sense of ease and calm. Even if it then seeks to take over your body and make you hers.

Honestly, if you ever see a heart faced woman around, don’t let her play ‘he loves me, he loves me not’ with a rose anywhere near you. It’s for your own good.

”Paper Heart” is taken from the debut Ghosts in Daylight EP of the same name which is out today and available on a ‘pay what you like’ deal via Bandcamp.

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Paper Boats – “Holidays”

22 Apr

Paper Boats

It seems appropriate (despite the dreary grey day today) that with Easter behind us and the summer surely only a matter of weeks away, to turn our attentions to the holiday season. To white sandy beaches, azure blue ocean waters, sun kissed happiness and cocktails by the pool; the dream image of a tropical paradise unspoilt and perfect. What a perfect time then for the Paper Boats guys to release a new track, “Holiday” to the world, especially when it sounds like the aural equivalent of that dream summer break.

“I feel so lazy” they sing, “I feel so high”, and it’s not surprising. The sunshine will do that to you, all that vitamin D making you feel all positive, happy and relaxed, like you don’t have a care in the world. “Holiday” has the same effect. It’s light and dreamy as the synth sounds and digital rhythms wash gently against the shore.

It’s very 80’s as well, like Wham playing volleyball on the beach while Duran Duran play scrabble by the pool and Mel and Kim try their luck at ping pong sort of 80’s. It’s very white linen shorts and open cotton shirts. The guitars evoke that yacht rock sound that was so derided at the time yet was extremely popular and the vocals sound like they belong to someone whose hair is a thing of beauty and the cause of envy to many.

In short, it’s a chilled out summer holiday track, full of dreamy melodies, soft vocals and a little bit of big hair and very tanned George Michael. Time to break out a piña colada we reckon, see you on the beach.

“Holidays” is out now and available to buy from iTunes.

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Ocean Calling – “Desert Sky Scarlet”

31 Mar

Ocean Calling

Is it possible to fall in love with a song thanks to just one word? More specifically, thanks to how that one word is pronounced? We think so, and while we were already getting lost in the roaming dreamy soundscapes of Ocean Calling’s “Desert Sky Scarlet”, it was Sophie Wilkie’s inflection whilst singing ‘snow’ in the chorus that tipped is over the edge. It sounds silly, but sometimes it really can be the littlest thing in a track that flicks that switch and hooks you in, and we are suckers for slightly left of centre intonation in female vocals.

With a wonderfully warm, homemade video of a grand two week roadtrip, Ocean Calling has captured the perfect visual companion for the wandering exploration that is the “Desert Sky Scarlet” adventure. It’s a joy to listen to, spellbinding as it softly caresses your senses with a romantic view of the world and all its silly and awe-inspiring nooks, crannies and expanses.

A pseudo Dr Who synthline kicks of this great adventure, but not into time and space, but across the globe, to majestic views, icy tundra’s and homely arcades, with everything in between. It is gorgeously nostalgic for the here and now, for the world around us that so many of us long to see and yet fail to do so. It has a sense of freedom, of innocence and of wonder infused throughout. It is the aural equivalent of that place in the world that you’ve always wanted to see. For us, it glides and swirls, delicate and mesmerising like the Northern Lights. For others, it could convey the magnificent scenes of the world laid out below Everest, or the Grand Canyon, the Everglades…

You get what we mean. It is a dreamy trip across the world, just close your eyes and let it take you wherever you want, especially if it somewhere covered in ‘snow’.

Via Just Music I Like

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