As always, six more new singles for you to enjoy on The Matinee August 20 edition. And of course, the songs are from artists from around the globe.
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Safe Barracks (London, UK) – “Headhunter”
For the last 18 months (give or take two), The Guardian has been espousing the exploits of London-based house duo Safe Barracks for their minimalist, dark, and industrial-infused electronic sound. Their sound has made them a favorite within London’s underground electronic and house scene, but they have yet to achieve mass appeal outside the Thames. That might change with the release of their latest single “Headhunter”. Retaining the dark, pulsating beats and haunting outlook of their cinematic pop, the song is more hypnotic and mesmerizing than their previous efforts as they incorporate more trance and garage sounds. Think Matthew Dear meets Massive Attack.
Safe Barracks is the project of Kaveh and Patrick and they are joined by Leo and Mike. The story of how the two came together is fascinating and can be read in an interview Patrick did with Vice back in 2014. Here’s the excerpt, but you can read the entire interview here.
Kaveh and I met at a house party in Tehran in 2008. I was travelling through the region and somehow ended up at what is deemed an illegal house party; alcohol was consumed and girls were free to wear whatever they wanted. We didn’t meet again until I answered an ad looking for a drummer. I walked into the session and Kaveh was there, playing bass. We both couldn’t believe it.
Léo and I both work at the Natural History Museum in London. We met vying for time in its piano room, located in one of the towers that overlook the grounds. We decided to make music together instead of one hogging the space.
We met Mike through a mutual friend. We had everybody we knew on the lookout for a drummer to complete the line-up. We saw Mike’s video on his website, asked him to join and were stunned but happy when he agreed to try out with us.
The video for “Headhunter” is also cinematic in a film noir sort of way. Check it out below. The duo’s music is available via Save Paris Records.
atOlla. (Sydney, Australia) – “Bloom”
We have a bit of an electronic theme going this week, which is more coincidental than intentional. It says a lot about the state of electronic today, where it’s not all about gyrating lights and overzealous beats and synths. Sydney duo atOlla. are a prime example of how the genre when infused with pop and other ambient can be haunting, lush, and gorgeous. Take one of their latest singles “Bloom”, which echoes of the coolness and vibrancy of Grimes and the engaging undertones of CHVRCHES softer songs. You don’t have to be a fan of electronic and electro-pop to realize the genius behind “Bloom”, where subtlety bleeds brilliance.
“Bloom” is was released in June as part of the Lucille EP, which is the third of a trilogy of EPs that Matilda Stephanie and James Santos have put out in the past few months. The EPs can be purchased on Bandcamp and iTunes.
The Woolly Bushmen (Orlando, USA) – “If It’s Alright With You”
Lazy, breezy, melodic, psychedelic rock. That’s a bit of a mouthful, but it’s the best way to describe the new single by Orlando’s The Woolly Bushmen. “If It’s Alright With You” recalls the greatness of the 70s but rolled up into a tight three minutes. Just one listen to this band and you’ll be won over for their brilliant rendition of the classic genre. And you might be even more impressed to know none of the three band members were born in the ’70s. From their press release, their gear might be as old or older than them. This is all just further evidence that music has no limits.
The Woolly Bushmen are Simon Palombi, Jacob Miller, and Julian Palombi. “If It’s Alright With You” is from their latest LP, Sky Bosses, which was released via Chesterwick Recording Laboratories. Get the album at Bandcamp, iTunes, Amazon, and eMusic.
The Creeping Ivies (Glasgow, UK) – “Bye Bye Baby”
Like melodic psych-rock, there’s always a place for some old-fashion rock ‘n roll, which is what The Creeping Ivies provide. The Glasgow, Scotland-based trio’s music harks back to the days when vinyl was king and jukeboxes were the sound system of choice, and this is evidenced by “Bye Bye Baby”, one of three singles on their latest EP, The Witch House. The song echos of the sublime and dreamy rock of The Ronettes. So grab a partner and start swaying around while you spin this awesome track.
The Creeping Ivies are Becca Murray (vocals, guitar); Ian Duncan (drums); and Christy Taylor (bass).
Cash+David (London, UK) – “Pains 4 U (ft. Rome Fortune)”
While songs about suffering in pain and losing someone can be heart-wrenching and tough to swallow at times, UK-duo Cash+David have taken a smooth, sultry, electro-pop approach on “Pains 4 U”. There’s no denying the hurt and resignation in “David’s” voice (more on that in a moment), but the touches of synths and keys in the background provide a serene mood of one finding peace. The brief cameo of Atlanta MC Rome Fortune adds another layer to the track, almost as if it is the protagonist’s conscience is speaking. The track isn’t so much an anthem but an exclamation of perseverance.
“Cash” is songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Tim Ross while “David” is singer and songwriter Liz Lawrence, who has dabbled in pop and folk music and is a touring member of Bombay Bicycle Club.
Reece (Virginia, USA) – “Don’t Go”
There’s always a single that just surprises and grabs one’s attention. Virginia artist Reece‘s latest single, “Don’t Go”, does just that. Founded in R&B and layered with synths and house beats, the song is absolutely startling. It isn’t the multiple layers and complexity of the song that draws one it; instead, it’s the crawling pace of the song that is also breathtaking mesmerizing.
His earlier works further showcases Reece’s innovation. For instance, on “Ghost”, which was released late in 2014, he blends a number of genres to create what could be best described as alternative R&B. Think Shabazz Palaces, The Weeknd, and early Twin Shadow, who all have deconstructed modern R&B and pop music and turned them on their heads to create something seismic and mind-blowing. Reece is following in their footsteps and added his one touches with both “Don’t Go” and “Ghosts”. Get to know this extremely gifted artist, whose star should explore really soon.
Hear “Ghost” and other of Reece’s songs on SoundCloud.
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