We have an 8-pack of great new music on The Matinee July 12th edition that includes one unbelievable cover; an unpretentious and clever teenager who is redefining alt hip hop; a handful of rockers; and a couple of sultry numbers that will spice things up.
Aloric – “When Doves Cry” (Prince cover) (London, England)
RIYL: Phoria, Mt. Wolf, The Antlers
In 2015, the mysterious Aloric startled many fans, including ourselves, with their cinematic and spatial indie. Their first single in eight months is a spectacular cover of Prince’s classic, “When Does Cry”. The band has stripped down the song, slowed down the tempo even further, and turned it into a haunting and enchanting tune. The guitar solo in the middle of the track is Prince-esque in its intensity and dramatic effect, but other than that Aloric have transformed the song into something all their own – a breathtaking experience that feels too surreal to be believed. This rendition is arguably the best cover of a Prince song I have heard.
BERRIES – “Siren” (London, England)
RIYL: The Beaches, Demander, Sleater-Kinney
Another band that continues to impress us is all-women trio BERRIES. They are like the second-coming of riot grrl legends Sleater-Kinney, although they shown the versatility to create more melodic numbers with a gritty underbelly. Take the band’s latest single, “Siren”, which exemplifies the London band’s ability to make a song that is quietly gritty and edgy yet sucks you in with an unexpected warm melody. The track itself is a thoughtful one that focuses on one’s boiling point, but “Siren” could also apply to the rising temperature and instability around the world.
“Siren” is the lead single from BERRIES’ forthcoming EP, Those Funny Things, which arrives August 19th. BERRIES are Holly Carter (guitar/vocals), Lauren Cooper (bass/vocals), and Lucie Hartmann (drums/vocals).
Cipierre – “Point sur la Mer” (Paris, France)
RIYL: The Tallest Man on Earth, José González, Nick Drake
While we do not often share Francophone songs, “Point sur la Mer”, the debut single by singer-songwriter Cipierre, is worth a listen. This stunning indie-folk tune is akin to the “sad songs” of Swedish stars The Tallest Man on Earth and José González. His vocals, however, echo Nick Drake, having the same soft, dark complexity of the late, great artist.
Unfortunately, we do not know a whole lot about Cipierre, other than he will be releasing his self-titled, debut EP in October. If your French is rusty, view the lyric video here.
James Leonard Hewitson – “Care Less, Love Less” (Hartlepool, England)
RIYL: Ron Gallo, Los Angeles Police Department, OSCAR
Meet James Leonard Hewitson, a young singer-songwriter from the London area. Last week, he shared his terrific debut single, “Care Less, Love Less”.
The song is summertime rock personified, as the shimmering and crystalline guitar lines provide slacker-rock track with a surf and ocean vibe. The sound perfectly complements Hewiston’s depiction of how many of us are feeling at this moment time, where the days are getting hotter and the dog days of summer are just around the corner. As Hewitson reminds us, all we want at this moment is for all our troubles to wash away so that we can enjoy these steamy days. He also offers a line for all the wives, husbands, girlfriends, and boyfriends to tell their mates, “Just because you care less, doesn’t mean that you are.” Thanks James for giving all of us an excuse.
Lucia Fontaine – “Lose My Mind” (Glasgow, Scotland)
RIYL: The Raveonettes, Jesus and The Mary Chain, Debbie Harry
Even though newcomer Lucia Fontaine officially released her debut single last week, she has made a name for herself in her hometown of Glasgow and abroad with her reverb-drenched rock sound and numerous covers. Her first song, “Lose My Mind”, channels some of her many influences, particularly channeling the anthemic sound of The Raveonettes. Like the Danish duo, Fontaine’s first song offers a killer, reverb guitar line. Her deep vocals, meanwhile, have an unexpected captivating quality. The combination makes us feel exactly what Fontaine repeats in the chorus, “You make me want to lose my mind”. Now this is an impressive introduction and debut.
“Lose My Mind” is the lead single from Fontaine’s forthcoming, debut EP, BEST BOY, which will be released this autumn via Dead Beet Records.
Mallrat – “For Real” (Brisbane, Australia)
RIYL: Charlie XCX, Alessia Cara, Lowell
There are some people who were just born to make music. Seventeen-year old Brisbane native Mallrat is one of those rare and gifted individuals. Her arrival on the Australian music scene a year ago was seismic. Her clever and unpretentious combination of hip hop and rap melded into ’80s and ’90s new wave, synth-pop, and alt-pop captured the attention of Triple-J and various Australian dailies and social media sites while an emerging fan base flocked to see her.
Self-described as the “Hannah Montana of the rap game”, Mallrat’s latest single, “For Real” showcases her immense skills and sharp mind. Shrouded in ’80s synth-pop, the song is not so much a celebration of youth and youthful ignorance, but a critique of the popularity obsessed and fake attitudes of people her age. With her wit and intelligent style, is Mallrat seriously only 17-years old? A star is born.
Saniyé – “Man Outta You” (New York City, USA)
RIYL: Cat Power, Ali Beletic, Pauline Andres
Sinem Saniyé‘s story is interesting. Born in Germany to Turkish parents, she and her family immigrated to the US when she was a young girl. The move introduced her to a wide range of music, and she gravitated to jazz and pop along with the music of her culture. All these various influences and sounds inspired to become a singer-songwriter, for which she adopted the one-word moniker Saniyé.
Saniyé has won numerous awards and acclaim in her nearly ten years as a musician, but she remains a bit of a hidden gem within and outside New York City. At the end of June, she released her acclaimed new album, Let’s Play, and the lead single is “Man Outta You”. The song is cinematic indie personified, mixing jazz-pop with a gritty, spaghetti western vibe. The song’s gunslinger is a heroine who holds all the cards and whose weapons are not her seductive qualities nor a six-shooter but her witty mind and take-charge attitude. I dare you to break free from the spell that Saniyé has weaved in this wonderful song.
STARS AT NIGHT – “My Way” (Los Angeles, USA)
RIYL: Le Butcherettes, Death Valley Girls, Joan Jett & the Blackhearts
Every week we need to have at least one “F*** yeah!” song, and the first of this week goes to STARS AT NIGHT, whose sole objective is to melt our collective faces. The Los Angeles, all-woman group’s new single, “My Way”, is awesome and meets every criteria we look for in a rocker. The guitar riffs provided by Seleste Diaz blaze with a frenetic energy. Joana Rubio’s drumming is crushing and pulsating. Elizabeth Banuelos offers one mean, hardcore bass line. Frontwoman Irene Quiles provides the starkness with her keys while her gritty vocals give the song’s its “f*** you” attitude.
STARS AT NIGHT originally formed in 2010, but for many people, including ourselves, we are only getting introduced to the band. We should be hearing more from them later this year, when their self-titled, sophomore album arrives.
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