New Music: ZZ Ward

Since I started watching True Blood (and consequently getting absolutely hooked on it), I’ve started to develop a deeper appreciation for that American southern blues sound that features so heavily on the show. ZZ Ward’s sound has a very raw, deep south sound but is still very easy to listen to and actually pretty enjoyable. Check out here.

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New Music: Alice Gold

Fun and edgy pop. Her PR reads, ‘Alice Gold’s journey has been dedicated to music from day one. Her desire for adventure and for living life to the full led her to buy a one-way ticket to America, winning a 1978 Winnebago in a poker game and spending the next six months weaving across the US, just Alice and her guitar!’ Check out here.

The return of French House… Welcome back SebastiAn!

Let it be known that I think French House is one of the best genres of music that I’ve ever let myself listen to. It’s defined so many big moments in my life, and for that I’ll hold it to my heart like the rockers do to the Rolling Stones or the hippies do to Jimmy Hendrix. For me, Daft Punk, Cassius, Justice, Air, DJ Mehdi, etc remind me of what it felt like to be a reckless hot mess stumbling through school and uni. Anyway, one of the newer kids on the block, SebastiAn, has carved a reputation for himself by making dirty funky remixes like this:

His debut album is due to hit shops at the end of the month, and I for one am very excited about it all. This is one of the tracks set to be on the record, and it features ‘it-boy’ of the moment, Mayer Hawthorne. It’s just so sexy (sounds a bit like Prince’s ‘Kiss’ on foreplay), and I feel like in a year’s time this is what pop songs will sound like:

There’s also a track with M.I.A. although I sadly don’t care much for her. But I know her contribution will be amazing. If you love this style of music like I do, check out Ed Banger’s roster of artists (of which SebastiAn belongs to).

First Listen: Blackroom ‘Control’

I mentioned this Norwegian group some time ago and this is their new single. I don’t think you can find any flaws in this perfect piece or electropop with a big throwback to trip hop.

Free Download: Young Rebel Set ‘Fall Hard’

Up and coming band Young Rebel Set spent the last three years working on their album ‘Curse our Love’. Check out one of their tracks and see if you like!

MP3: Young Rebel Set – Fall Hard

Live: Alex Clare & Oh Land at XOYO London

After the first time seeing Alex Clare live I knew I wanted to see him again. As it happened he was supporting Oh Land tonight at XOYO in ubercool Shoreditch. He didn’t disappoint, got me jumping around a little bit. I can’t wait for his album to drop!

Oh Land came on with a huge headdress made from feathers. She too was amazing, and clearly had a big crowd of devoted followers. One of the best shows I’ve seen this year (despite bumping into an ex of mine inside). All I can say about her music is it’s kinda like The Knife, but with a bit of heart. The Danish invasion continues. Oh, and Boy George was hiding in the crowd! Few more pics on my Flickr.

Now then, have you brought Friendly Fires yet?

That’s OK, you can buy the best album of the year so far here. They’ve kept the bar high with their second album, it’s most definitely worth buying and listening to. Eargasm. Actually, their track Hawaiian Air was on loop in my head when the dentist raped my gums last week, and it totally made me feel better. Have you brought it? Let me know what you think if you want!

Free Download: Stag & Dagger Mixtape

This year, the London Stag & Dagger features performances by Wire, Toro y Moi, New Young Pony Club and James Yuill performing exclusive sets at venues across east London. Also, boasting an impressive roster immerging talent including Christian Aids, Creep, Patterns, Fiction as well as much-hyped American artists No Joy and Our Mountain.

First Watch: Two Wounded Birds ‘The Midnight Wave’

Previously featured on here a while back, this is the new video from Two Wounded Birds. Short and sweet.

Beverley Knight announces release of new album ‘Soul UK’

Beverley Knight will be releasing her seventh studio album in July. Entitled ‘Soul UK,’ the album features British songs and artists that inspired Beverley leading up to her own arrival on the UK scene in the mid 90’s.
 
Produced by Grammy winning Martin Terefe (James Morrison, Jason Mraz) and London production duo Future Cut (Lilly Allen, Beyonce). Taking in songs from a range of iconic artists – from Soul II Soul and Loose Ends to Jamiroquai and George Michael, it also includes some of the more ‘hidden’ gems that make up British soul’s highlights of the 80’s and 90’s, including Princess’s “Say I’m Your Number One” and Lewis Taylor’s “Damn”.

New Music: Dynasty Electric

Six years after forming in 2003, Dynasty Electric caught the attention of hip-hop mogul Damon Dash who paired them with producer Ski Beatz (Jay-Z, Camp Lo, Curren$y) who then infused his signature beats into their electro-pop tracks. Check out here.

Eurovision 2011

I arrived from Dusseldorf last night after going to Germany to watch the Eurovision Song Contest. It was absolutely amazing- I don’t care who thinks it’s rubbish, when you’re in that arena surrounded by tens of thousands of screaming fans, all from different parts of the world, staring at a massive, mind blowingly huge and complex stage with a screen the size of an office block, you know you’re in the middle of a good thing.

Azerbaijan (where?!) won the night, which was shocking and a bit sad as there’s no way they will outdo what the Germans did for this year’s show.

The UK were great, and even though the sound was a bit off, Sweden or Denmark should have won. More pics on my Flickr.


New Music: Nause

Swedish housey pop- makes me want to be in the middle of a big dancefloor in Stockholm rubbing with hot Swedes. Check out here.

New Music: Lovelle

20-year-old Londoner Lovelle is set to become one of the hottest new names in British music this summer with the release of her debut single ‘Uh-Oh’. Combining elements of pop, soul, grime, and bashment to create a sound that’s edgy, yet laden with hooks, Uh-Oh (released June 20 on De Wallen Records) is already building a huge buzz at specialist radio, with Lovelle supporters including the likes of Trevor Nelson on1Xtra. The track also features a quick-fire rap from the UK’s bashment queen, Lady Chann. ‘Uh-Oh’ has been selected to soundtrack MAX Factor’s newest high profile TV ad campaign. Directed by legendary director Jake Nava (whose other directing credits include Beyonce’s ‘Crazy In Love’, ‘Single Ladies’ and Kanye West’s ‘Monster’), Lovelle’s single was personally selected by Jake as the soundtrack to the ad, which he directs, after a friend played him the track. Nava was so impressed with Lovelle’s debut offering that he even agreed to produce the video for Uh-Oh (which his brother, Orson Nava, has directed). Not bad for a girl from a South-East London council estate who is currently balancing her fledgling musical career with holding down a day job at New Look! Check out here.

Free Download: Ten tracks by Ungdomskulen

Norwegian trio Ungdomskulen are back with ten free tracks – part of a new campaign they’re calling GIMME TEN, the band are releasing 10 one-minute tracks for free, every Monday and Friday, until June 3rd. From June 6th the tracks will be available as a vinyl mini LP. Each track has a video to accompany it, courtesy of Berlin based arts collective Blank Blank. Watch it all unfold here

New Music: Lilla Sällskapet

A little lesson in Swedish… ‘Snart’ which is the title to this lovely track you hear above, means ‘Soon’. ‘Lilla Sällskapet’, the act that are responsible for it, means ‘small society’- although I could be wrong- I’m still very new to the language. You don’t need to speak Swedish to enjoy it though. It’s the kind of music that lifts you up and takes you somewhere lush. Check out here.

New Music: When Saints Go Machine

Danish electropop who have been around since 2007- so they’re not really new I guess but better late than never. Their track ‘Fail Forever’ is full of movement, it’s beautiful. Sort of Miike Snow on a comedown. Check out here.

New Music: Capra

Right, when I first heard this I thought it was rubbish. Then I watched the video and I don’t know, I started liking it. Maybe its seeing the words pop up in a swishy way or something. I’m not sure. They’re getting a lot of buzz in any case, and they look good. Check out here.

Free Download: AlunaGeorge ‘Analyser’ (Last Japan’s Buy Me A Spaceship and Fly Remix)

I’ve blogged about AlunaGeorge on here before, I really think they’re ones to watch. Fusing the current desire for wild electronic productions and a pop sensibility that everyone enjoys.

MP3: AlunaGeorge – Analyser (Last Japan’s Buy Me A Spaceship and Fly Remix)

Free Download: NewVillager ‘Lighthouse’ (Punches Remix)

I love this remix – if it doesn’t pick you up when you listen to it then you’d need to be having a pretty bad day! Over the past year, NewVillager has made rumblings around the internet with catchy pop hooks, intimate live shows, and visually mind-bending videos. It’s with much excitement that they announce the release of their official self-titled debut coming June 21 on IAMSOUND.

MP3: NewVillager – Lighthouse (Punches Remix)