Natalie 2V – Black Heart

A deliciously sinister yet playful slice of dark pop from one of the UK’s most exciting pop talents, Natalie 2V. This track is infectiously catchy – so beware!

“This song explores text talk and uses the black heart emoji as the main reference to imply ‘sexting’ in the modern age.”

Natalie 2V

M.A.G.S. – Choked Out

It’s pretty much impossible not to be a M.A.G.S. fan. His new single ‘Choked Out’ is a retro dream-pop bop that weaves through moments of choice; just like a fork in the road but with no prior knowledge of where those two roads will lead.

“I feel like it’s my job to make people feel as if they’re a part of something bigger and helping them to look inside themselves, and hopefully be able to then have an easier time relating to others. We all go through such similar experiences, and I hope to one day build a community full of people who care about each other and anyone can feel welcome, seen and understood.”

M.A.G.S.

Dutch Melrose – Lucky Strike

With over 2.5 million streams worldwide from previous releases, LA-based singer, songwriter and producer Dutch Melrose is taking the independent artist lane by storm.

And with the release of ‘Lucky Strike’ he is now also serving us some premium bedroom pop. This is a dark and captivating sound that still manages to be playful and catchy.

Dutch Melrose

Reece – Down Goes Frazier

Reece has been featured on Alfitude for a good few years now. And there’s a reason as to why this American talent is so highly favoured; he’s consistently delivering some of the finest cuts of pop you could expect.

Today sees the release of new single ‘Down Goes Frazier’. Life and love can beat you down like George Foreman in his prime, and often the best you can do is live to fight again. Reece has a quarter-life crisis as another relationship crashes to the mat, with the hook being reference to the boxing announcer’s famous call as Foreman knocked out Joe Frazier.

“It’s hard to open up to people in real life. I use music as an outlet to show who I truly am to the entire world.”

REECE

X. ARI – She Knows It

An almighty banger from Canadian mega-talent X. ARI. Epic pop-rock tones serve as a perfect base for powerful vocals with captivating lyricism.

‘She Knows It’ was written as a dedication to X. ARI’s girlfriend, who helped transform her into a newly complete person and made her realise that she was truly meant to be with women after a lifetime of dating men.

X. ARI

Bryar – Neon Signs

I’ve been a fan of Bryar for quite some time. Her thoughtful and carefully considered approach towards writing pop songs has always impressed me, and new single ‘Neon Signs’ is no different.

“This song is a nostalgic look at youth and the freedom that comes with it. It is upbeat with undertones of melancholia.”

Bryar

Hand Made House – Like the Weather

American outfit Hand Made House are back with a fresh take on what it means to be a pop band.

Riding high from the success of their 2020 EP ‘Honestly, Honesty’, the group return with a single that evolved from a culmination of pent-up feelings and soul searching.

“We’ve felt as though we’ve always been good at sad or bitter songs, and this last year was unfortunately a time where I felt a lot of those emotions. I remember moving to California and trying to write joyful songs still, and then telling Amin and Josh ‘I’m not happy, and I feel like I’m lying trying to write songs that feel happy.’ This song was a culmination of a lot of pent up feelings and a lot of soul searching. I wanted the song to feel like the waves of emotion that I was dealing with on a day to day basis”.

Hand Made House

Feels – Still On My Mind

The hugely exciting Danish R&B-pop duo consisting of Siná Mousavian (singer/ songwriter) and David Evers (songwriter/producer) return today with a sleek song that looks at the desire of being with an ex who is being treated badly by her current boyfriend.

‘Still On My Mind’ was created after David came up with a guitar riff that brought up some feelings and memories from Siná:

“When I heard the guitar it took me back to that feeling of wanting this someone back who felt the same but couldn’t escape from her toxic relationship. I used to be exactly that for her, but this time around I was ready to man up.”

Feels

SYML – DIM

A hauntingly ethereal and deeply moving ballad from singer, songwriter and producer Brian Fennell, who is more commonly known as SYML.

Today marks the release of his highly anticipated new EP ‘DIM’, with the theme of ‘loss exploration’ running throughout the record.

“This EP is largely about losing those close to us. Calling it DIM really applies to the light we carry during our time here. When those lights go out, it’s this sort of dimming process, but rather than living in that sadness – even though I think that’s a really healthy thing to do, to stay in that cozy, warm blanket sadness sometimes – it’s about honouring what that light was, and realising that there’s still that same light in all of us that are still here.”

‘DIM’ out now via Nettwerk Records

SYML

Molly Hammar – FRIENDS

I’ve made no secret of the fact that Molly Hammar is one of my favourite Swedish talents from recent years. The winner of last year’s ‘Breakthrough of the Year’ at the coveted Swedish awards Rockbjörnen, she returns with the sensational ‘Friends’ today.

A finessed slice of RnB-pop infused with hints of soul, Hammar delivers a song that looks at a common situation most of us have fallen into:

“‘Friends’ is about not wanting to feel lonely and romanticising a friendship that shouldn’t be any more than that, just because you don’t want to feel alone. Sometimes it is just better to accept people and relationships for what they are and move on.”

Taken from the sophomore EP, ‘God Is lonely Too’ which is out now via Cosmos Music.

Molly Hammar

Vaarin – Lighthouse

A stunningly haunting release from Norwegian chanteuse Vaarin. This is not a song to be taken lightly; it’s a textured and emotional song that takes you on a journey with it’s intense lyricism, sung over a melancholic melody that flows through a luxuriously cinematic soundscape.

Taken from the upcoming project ‘Imaginary Movies’ which will be out in May.

Vaarin

Breazy Daze – Playboy

Icelandic singer-songwriter Breazy Daze (aka Andri Jónsson) is back today with a beautifully melancholic blend of indie and lo-fi pop in the form of ‘Playboy’.

While on the surface the sound feels fun and light-hearted, the song has a deeper undertone that looks at the positives and negatives of letting go.

“In its lyrics, an erratic but romantic-at-heart character tries to focus on the journey rather than the destination; but inevitably faces complications and can never fully forget the consequences of his lifestyle.”

Breazy Daze

Benedikt – In the Mirror

Norway continues to be a hotbed for European talent this year. Emerging from the west coast of the beautiful Nordic nation, Benedikt are a nine-piece outfit who label themselves as an ‘atmospheric indie orchestra’.

The sound is beautifully captivating, and encapsulates a multitude of emotions in a subtle and considered way. On their new single ‘In the Mirror’, they say:

“The lyrics are about a close friend of the band who got severely injured after a drowning accident. Wrapped in fast-paced drums and dark, atmospheric orchestration, it explores hazy, adolescent memories and the joys and struggles of growing up together.”

Taken from the sophomore album ‘Balcony Dream’ which is out now on Koke Plate.

Benedikt

JAWNY – Best Thing

Formerly known as Johnny Utah, today marks the return of JAWNY with the release of ‘Best Thing’. This is a refreshingly inventive take on the pop – it’s a sparkling, soulful and original sound that is perfect for the summer months ahead.

The track marks JAWNY’s first new music this year, and follows the culmination of his debut project ‘For Abby’ which included the huge viral track ‘Honeypie’, a track that has now been streamed over 200 million times globally.

JAWNY

Laica – love u lately / out of touch

Two sensational bops from LA-based singer-songwriter Laica. These tracks have a perfect balance of being sweet pop ditties, while also carrying beautifully relatable emotive tones.

Laica

Lou Hayter – Telephone

A sleek yet understated blend of disco, funk and soul from former New Young Pony Club member Lou Hayter.

This is exactly the kind of song that is impossible not to vibe along with, and a perfect taster for the upcoming album ‘Private Sunshine’ which is due out on 28th May 2021.

Lou Hayter

Sinead Harnett – Hard 4 Me 2 Love You

by Rosie Matheson

One of my favourite vocalists from recent years, Sinead Harnett is back today with a stripped-back soulful slice of pop that’s simply beautiful.

“This was one of those songs I wasn’t ready to finish for quite some time. I’d had an argument with someone in my family and the chorus just came out. But it was too painful to finish until years later when I played the chorus to M-Phazes. I think what I learned from the process was that love evolves and changes, but when it’s unconditional you just keep going until it feels good again.”

Taken from the upcoming album ‘Ready Is Always Too Late’ which is due 21st May 2021 via Sony Music

Sinead Harnett

Rakky Ripper – Whatever

Getting hyperpop done the right way is a very careful art. I don’t think any recent genre can sound so spectacularly sh*t if it’s been approach the wrong way.

Fortunately, talents like Spanish artist Rakky Ripper are a masterclass in perfect hyperpop. ‘Whatever’ is experimental, eccentric and playful while still being very, very pop.

Rakky Ripper

Olivia Lunny – Sad to See You Happy

Canadian breakout pop sensation Olivia Lunny returns with a new track that is sure to stay in your heads for quite some time. This is a nostalgic, melodious bop we could all do with listening to today.

‘Sad to See You Happy’ is a very fun, vibrant song at first glance, the lyrics however, are subtly darker and reminiscent. The contradiction of these two make for a unique combo and will hopefully leave the listeners intrigued and dancing along!”

Olivia Lunny

Khazali – Comfort

London-based singer-songwriter Khazali has released a gorgeously alluring piece of alt-pop perfection on ‘Comfort’.

Featuring delicate piano-led grooves over a subtle electronic beat, Khazali’s emotive vocals pull us through a sonic stream of consciousness. Speaking on the track, he says:

“Brian sent me these beautiful broken piano chords, and I broke into tears. I had my notepad, and I just left myself a note, a half-poem saying; ‘I can’t comfort you right now / Let the water wash you down’.”

Taken from debut EP ‘Going Home Vol.1’ due on 7th April via Kitsuné Musique.

Khazali