Saturday Sampler October 22nd offers another ten-course meal of new music. There are songs that sizzle, some that offer a nice sweet finish, and others that will explode your senses.
Audio Visual – “Running To Stand Still” (remake) (Hattiesburg, MS, USA)
RIYL: U2, Rhye
To kick things off on the Saturday Sampler, we share a remarkable remake of a classic and underrated U2 song by two visionaries.
Chandler Dunaway and John Arender are students at the University of Southern Mississippi, who originally were creating music independently. But as is often the case, leaving home and attending post-secondary education brought them together, and now they are undertaking a project known as Audio Visual. They’re not necessarily creating new music nor completely remixing them like other producers. Instead, they are re-imagining what songs could sound like when they are stripped back to their bare essentials and given an interstellar feel. Their first single is a remake of a live version of “Running To Stand Still”, which originally debuted on U2’s iconic Joshua Tree. This new take is beautiful and dreamy. It is breathtaking in its simplicity yet mind-blowing in its execution.
For hardcore U2 fans (like some of us are), you will hear the melody to “Where The Streets Have No Name” playing in the background and notice the nod to “Rudy Tuesday” at the end. Now if U2 would only make something as beautiful again.
CLAVVS – “Bloom” (Atlanta, USA)
RIYL: Austra, Phantogram
Combine powerful yet ethereal vocals with electronic trip-hop loops and what you’ll get is hypnotic, sultry electropop. The emerging Atlanta duo CLAVVS (pronounced “claws”) features acclaimed producer Graham Marsh (he’s won four Grammys) alongside singer Amber Renee. The lush electronic layers on their newest single, “Bloom”, will leave you spellbound. If your pulse quickens at the thought of diving into a sea of darkly brooding, synth-heavy music, then CLAVVS might just be your new favorite group.
What stands out about CLAVVS is their intense chemistry that rivals Phantogram. Amber Renee’s smoky vocals produce a euphoric rush when looped throughout this track. “Bloom” is the third single they’ve released since their debut album (halfblood) came out earlier this year. Their follow-up effort, World Underwater, is due out next year. Until then, head over to their Bandcamp page for their other gems or to iTunes to grab this single.
Color You – “Lady In Blue” (San Diego & Los Angeles, USA)
RIYL: Grouplove, Young the Giant, Catfish and the Bottlemen
Whether you grew up in the ’60s, ’70, ’80, ’90s, or ’00s, there was always a rock band who represented the younger generation. Could Color You be that band? Could they follow in the footsteps of The Who, Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Aerosmith, The Offspring, Sum 41, and others?
Their single, “Lady In Blue”, has the markings of a hit. Raging guitars, infectious melodies, and a storyline that will appeal to everyone. And like the hits made by the aforementioned bands, you might find yourself unleashing your favorite air guitar, especially during the raucous solos. Meanwhile, you and everyone around you will be shouting the chorus, “Ooh, ooh, ooh…” Just the like the classic songs that have defined every generation, Color You have delivered one hellacious number.
“Lady In Blue” is taken from the band’s debut album, The Grand Trine. Hear it on SoundCloud. Color You are Benjamin Ross (vocals/guitar), Brian Han (bass/vocals), Drew Stutz (drums) and Theo Eckhardt (guitar/vocals).
Coquin Migale – “Soft” (Newcastle, England)
RIYL:Jaws, Lost Animal, SYKOYA
Newcastle quartet Coquin Migale continue to re-invent themselves with luscious new vibes that we can’t get enough of.
They seem to be establishing their sound that includes shoegaze goodness layered with anthemic rock to reach a myriad of fans.
With “Soft” we are taken on a 3 minute ride of amazing vocals, perfectly reverberating guitars and a full bodied sound that leaves you completely satisfied (kind of like the perfect pint).
Coguin Migale are Alex Soper – Guitar & Vocals, Stevie Kane – Bass, Mark Crab Robinson – Lead Guitar
and Josh Holmes – Drums. “Soft” will be released November 18th on Fierce Panda Records.
Dooms Virginia – “Forgetful Sam” (San Francisco, USA)
RIYL: Wolf Alice, Black Honey, Warpaint
Everyone has had that moment when they have asked why they had not discovered something sooner. After you hear “Forgetful Sam”, you’ll be asking this very question. Specifically, “Dooms Virginia, where have you have been all my life?” We certainly asked this, not once but repeatedly.
Formerly known as Annie Girl and the Flight, Dooms Virginia have created an awesome rocker. The song starts off patiently, as frontwoman Annie Lipetz’s vocals, which have a Chrissy Amphlett sultriness, sooth our nerves. The crystalline guitars interspersed with sudden, spectacular bursts wake up the senses. And then the song takes off, reaching a level of blistering ferocity that will blow your mind and salivating for more. Now that you have discovered this great little band with us, start spreading the word.
Dooms Virginia are Annie Lipetz, Josh Pollock, Mark Nelsen and Sonny Pearce.
Living – “A Light” (Bergen, Norway via Brazil)
RIYL: Vacationer, DIIV, Tame Impala
Another band that continues to impress us is Norwegian / Brazilian trio Living. They are doing things that not any other band is doing – creating tropical psychedelia. Their first single, “Cerulean”, made us notice them. Their latest number, “A Light”, has made us their biggest cheerleaders.
Waves of DIIV- and Tame Impala-like trippiness litter this nearly seven-minute epic. However, an undercurrent of Rio de Janeiro’s beach vibes cuts through the haziness to bring a sunny disposition to the song. All you can do is close your eyes, breath in the hallucinogenic effects, and smile. “Living” is the perfect track for autumn, one that will warm you up on the inside and take you on a short holiday.
Mainland – “Permission Slip” (New York, USA)
RIYL: Arkells, Dreamers, The Rebel Light
Mainland are back with a new track titled “Permission Slip”. The track is filled with addicting pop hooks all the while emitting a total punk rock attitude.
With lyrics that proclaim “I don’t need no permission slip/I don’t need no kiss on the lips” — but also makes a passing reference to “drinking all alone at night.” The contradictory lyrics describe the often opposing feelings and emotions we experience in the closest of relationships.
Mainland shares a bit about the track: “We wrote and recorded ‘Permission Slip’ in the foggy hills above of San Francisco,” the band explains. “This is the first of a collection of songs that we’ve recorded completely on our own and we found it inspiring to have zero creative boundaries. The seclusion was great for having minimal distraction, but after a while the cabin fever can make you feel restless. The song is a reflection of that pent up energy needing to be released.”
Mainland are Jordan Topf, Corey Mullee, Alex Pitta and Tucker Fleming.
Öhrn – “Bang Bang” (Stockholm, Sweden)
RIYL: FEW BITS, Lorde
Whether it’s Cupid’s arrow of Bon Jovi singing to us about being “shot through the heart”, love has often been associated as the most powerful (and sometimes most destructive) force on the planet. Whether it is heartbreak or yearning to be with someone so badly, love can mess with our minds, and Swedish singer-songwriter, Frida Öhrn, offers a fascinating analogy on her new single.
With “Bang Bang”, Öhrn equates her love for someone as a gun that might shoot blanks. It’s an interesting take to the common topic, suggesting that she may love someone but it may not be reciprocated. It’s not the pains of a broken heart, but the possibility of eventually being rejected. It is the hesitation and the uncertainty of wading into the unknown, where commitment and expressing the words “I love you” can be the most frightening thing for a person. Using a stuttering pop melody and the injection of the saxophone at the end of the tune are ingenious to describe the ebbs and flows of a love affair. And when one does finally give him, it can lead to something as sultry as the beautiful notes of the saxophone.
“Bang Bang’ is out now via Öhrn’s own record label Eagle Brain. Her debut EP, Bang Bang, will arrive November 30th.
Smoove & Turrell – “Fight On” (Newcastle, England)
RIYL: Bobby Womack, Chic, The James Hunter Six, Kraak & Smaak
Three minutes of pure Geordie funk: that’s what you’ll find on the newest single from Newcastle soul group Smoove and Turrell. We’re pretty sure it’s impossible to remain still whilst listening to “Fight On“ thanks to its irresistible grooves. The first few seconds will make your ears perk up; when John Turrell starts to sing, you’re already out of your chair gettin’ down.
We’ll forgive you for thinking this song is a previously unreleased Chic track. The smokin’ hot riffs sound like something Nile Rodgers would play. (To be fair, Chic is one of Smoove & Turrell’s influences.) If you’re not already familiar with these guys, let’s bring you up to speed. They’ve opened for Chic. They’ve played Glastonbury Festival twice. Their fourth full-length album, Crown Posada, released last week and is getting lots of global radio play. One spin and you’ll understand why.
Smoove & Turrell are: Jonathan Watson/aka Smoove (production/percussion), John Turrell (vocals), Andy Champion (bass), Mike Porter (keys), David Wilde (saxophone) and Lloyd Croft (drums).
Sundara Karma – “Olympia” (Reading, England)
RIYL: Gengahr, Jinja Safari, Divine Fits
Several blogs and websites, including ourselves, have been predicting major stardom for Sundara Karma. They make highly infectious pop-rock, but it’s not of the formulaic, top-40 variety. Nope, this is a band making music that sounds fresh and exciting while telling stories that belong on the big screen.
Their new single, “Olympia”, evidences all these traits and then some. The song beckons the anthemic and cinematic pop-rock of the ’80s. It is a song that would rival Kenny Loggins’ “Footloose” and “Danger Zone” and Modern English’s “I Melt With You” – energetic, danceable, and one that will stick in your head for days if not weeks. And like these great songs, “Olympia” could become an instant classic and catapult the Reading quartet to a level we have long expected.
Sundara Karma’s highly anticipated, debut album, Youth is Only Ever Fun in Retrospect, will be released on January 6th via RCA Records and Chess Club. Sundara Karma are Oscar Pollock, Haydn Evans, Ally Baty, and Dom Cordell
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