Thursday 28 July 2022

EP NEWS: Bess Atwell - 'Already, Rearranged'

A quick post today as I'm off to London soon for a very exciting book-related event. I'm usually not one for remixes, as a rule. Aside from some artists, they're normally just not for me. I gave this one the benefit of the doubt though - it's Bess Atwell, of course I had to. She's enlisted a string of musical friends to remix tracks from her record Already, Always and the tracks are emerging as the Already, Rearranged EP (Sept 16th). The first track sees Igor Haefeli (Daughter) rework Time Comes In Roses and I have to say, I'm vibing with it. Elsewhere on the EP we find Billie Marten, Liz Lawrence and Chartreuse. Dreamy. 

Bess writes: "When we decided to do a remix EP I never imagined we'd create something I'm so proud of and excited to share. I'm a fan of every artist involved in this project and I wanted them to have total creative freedom and to showcase their own perspectives on the songs. Considering I gave them no brief at all, I'm all the more proud of what we created and the tracks as a cohesive body of work."

"I love remixes that keep roughly the same song structure but still manage to reinvent it. Igor did an amazing job of re-contextualising this song, gifting me the ability to hear it as if for the first time, from the outside. I absolutely adore this remix and was so excited when I first heard it." 

On the process of remixing the track, Igor shares: "When I first heard 'Time Comes In Roses', it instantly felt like an honest and vulnerable song. The lyrics seemed as if they'd been written without too much judgement, beautifully composed yet raw. My original idea was to splinter different parts of Bess's vocal to push the stream of consciousness feel even further, but I just kept coming back to the song's original structure, back to how it flowed naturally. The colour really tilted for me once I started emphasising and manipulating some of the darker parts of the track. I think that's what I really connected with: the idea that we all have different faces, a few of which we might not be proud of but are, nevertheless inherent to ourselves." 

Follow Bess Atwell - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Wednesday 27 July 2022

WATCH: Wyldest - 'Tin Foil Girl'

Wyldest is back with Tin Foil Girl, the latest single from her upcoming album Feed The Flowers Nightmares, arriving via Hand in Hive on 9th September. One of my favourites from her so far, I reckon... catchy and empowering - the perfect combination. Not gonna lie, the video for this one has me kind of transfixed too, and makes me want to dig out all of my skateboarding games. Directed by Zak Watson, it showcases Wyldest (ZoĆ« Mead) celebrating the joy of skateboarding alongside a community of skaters. 

On the track, Wyldest says that it is "about finding your own superpower to achieve a real state of flow and what I'm coining 'organic happiness.' The kind of happiness that can only be achieved by doing something active rather than passive, activities that truly encourage growth. 

Having dealt with more anxiety than ever in the past few years, I've really had to battle this temptation for 'quick fix' happiness, as it doesn't last and it can sometimes lead to worsened problems. I'm not particularly good at skateboarding, but it is therapy for me. I use it as a way of getting out of dark places and it works because I have no ego attached to it."

Wyldest will be performing for Rough Trade in London, Nottingham and Bristol in September to launch their exclusive silver edition vinyl, ahead of a UK headline tour through the rest of September. Dates and tickets here.

Follow Wyldest - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Thursday 21 July 2022

WATCH: The Big Moon - 'Wide Eyes'

Oh my goodness. I'm completely in love with this - one of my favourite tracks and videos of the year so far. So good! We all love The Big Moon, right? They're back!!!!! New album Here Is Everything is due October 14th and the first single from it is as dreamy as the band themselves. The Louis Bhose directed video will give you all of the friendship feels. I could ramble about how brill it all is (the Pooneh Ghana album cover too...!) but I wanted to share this from Jules, sharing to Instagram recently.

Hello its jules here. I wanted to try and explain a bit where ‘Wide Eyes’ came from. Its a short song and there aren’t loads of lyrics but in that magical way that songs can mean so much and be made of so little, its tied up in a giant tangle of emotions and experiences for me and my family and our band.

It was 2021. And I was desperate to write a really big, happy song. I was 5 months into motherhood and my soul was overflowing with something but I was too physically and mentally exhausted to actually string words together and define it and make music with it. Later that year I met @jessicawinter666 who came into my life like an angel and helped me turn those jumbled feelings into a song and I think its just a mad snapshot of a time when life just felt huge and holy and raw and incredible. I was still breastfeeding, I was barely sleeping, I was losing my hair, I was pumping and sweating and crying and lonely and only just about coping but amongst all that, I felt a burning love and a new kind of happiness. I guess the world felt innocent again. For a while anyway.
For me this song feels so personal but when Soph, Celia and Fern stepped in it turned into something bigger, and it feels like friendship and promise - we have loved every minute of being back together and doing what we do. The way they have supported me not just musically but personally through the last year has been just huge and when I listen to the songs on this album I hear all of it and feel all of it again. I love them they are the best godmothers and queens of my life

So yes its hard to explain how much this song means to me, I’ve probably touched on about 0.00002% of it, but basically, after doing the whole rollercoaster of pregnancy and birth and becoming a mum and that whoooolllle mess, this song marked the time when i started to feel like myself again. And that’s SUCH an important time for a new parent. Its a place of pure relief and its so full of love and joy and Im so glad it exists.

Me too Jules, me too. 

Pre-order/pre-save the new record here.

Follow The Big Moon - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Monday 18 July 2022

LISTEN: Wunderhorse - 'Leader of the Pack'

Let's escape the heatwave for a moment and go back to July last year. Wunderhorse (AKA Dead Pretties frontman Jacob Slater) was bursting onto the scene with Teal and I was nothing short of obsessed. A few singles later, he's just shared Leader of the Pack and the obsession is back. The press release describes it as "an instant earworm" and I couldn't agree more... it has glued itself to my brain, and you won't find me complaining. The track is taken from the upcoming debut album Cub, releasing via Communion Records on 16th September, with a show at London's Lafayette on 20th October. 

On the track, Jacob shares "Leader of the Pack is a song about betrayal. About not being able to escape the thing that eats away at you, it's a song written as a means of getting even."  

Follow Wunderhorse - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Sunday 17 July 2022

LISTEN: Hazey Jane - 'Be Better Today'

Happy Sunday, folks. I am beyond excited to share the news that Hazey Jane are back! The indie-folk trio from London have long been friends of the blog - I premiered a video for their track Mother's Lie way back in late 2017 - but they've been away for a couple of years on a health hiatus. The time away from performing has proven productive when it comes to writing, and they're back with an EP ready to release later this year. The first taste of it arrived a couple of days ago in the shape of Be Better Today, and it is (of course) all sorts of lovely. I've missed these guys. 

The band explain that the new track "addresses the difficulty we all experience when trying to empathise with people we do not understand. The song imagines "a room full of love", a space representing kindness and tolerance, from which it is all too easy to walk away. 'Be Better Today' is not merely a criticism of narrow-mindedness, but rather an invitation to pause, listen and be conscious of experiences other than our own."

Follow Hazey Jane - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Thursday 14 July 2022

WATCH: Bells Larsen - 'People Who Mean So Much To Me'

"I wondered what would happen, if they made music out of me." 

New artist (for the blog) time!! Following their first single Double Aquarius last month, Bells Larsen (he/they) is back with People Who Mean So Much To Me, and this one really stopped me in my tracks in the inbox last week. Featuring Leith Ross on background vocals, the track features "vignettes about three distinct relationships that I had fostered throughout the span of a single year." 

Larsen adds "I wrote People Who Mean So Much To Me during the pandemic, while I was really missing community. The song is a reminder to myself that, even when I'm feeling lonely and isolated, I will continue to cross paths with incredible people and build meaningful relationships." 

The track arrives with a video directed by Daniel Crawford and animated by Bachar Bachoura, Daniel Crawford and Katie Finn, and which features wasps - a theme through the record. Bells adds "the record itself it about loss, and the act of losing can be like a wasp's sting. Also, there's a voice memo that features a song about wasps that bookends the record. This is all to say that it feels like I've had a wasp following me around for the past few years. That's where the idea for the video came from."

Both tracks are taken from Good Grief, releasing via Next Door Records on 9th September. Pre-save the record here.

Follow Bells Larsen - Facebook | Instagram.

Wednesday 13 July 2022

LISTEN: Elanor Moss & Bess Atwell - 'Sober (Again)'

Dreamy collaboration time. About a month ago, I caught Elanor Moss supporting Memorial in London. A couple of weeks prior to that, Bess Atwell opening for Bear's Den. Both are incredible songwriters and artists in their own right... imagine my delight to find that they were releasing a collaboration! The track is Sober (Again) - a re-worked version of a track from Elanor's Citrus EP. As expected, it is bloody lovely. Brb, off to beg a promoter to stick these two on a line-up together so that I can hear this live. 

On the collaboration, Elanor said: "I've been a fan of Bess' since she released her brilliant debut album last year. When Oli Deakin sent me the strings he'd arranged for our alternate version I knew her smoky, nostalgic voice would be the perfect fit. Then when we reached out and she said yes I was thrilled! Getting her flavour on it was really special. She nailed the delivery and really got into the character and sentiment of the song." 

Bess adds: "I hadn't heard Elanor's music until Lucy (Rose) put me in touch with her about a possible collaboration, but having Lucy's endorsement meant I knew I'd soon be a fan. Elanor is a stunning lyricist and singer so it was a privilege to get to contribute vocals to this beautiful track. I chose Sober because I was struck by its simplicity, and the moving, intuitive melody."

Follow Elanor Moss - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Follow Bess Atwell - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Friday 8 July 2022

ALBUM NEWS: Low Island - 'Life In Miniature'

Tumultuous political carnage aside, I've been feeling pretty under the weather this week and keeping on top of the blog has felt a bit of a chore (boo). Then - into my inbox - a quick reminder of just why I spend so much time doing this... some *very* exciting news about an artist I love, and an early listen of something new. The artist in question is Low Island (Oxford superstars/general heroes) and they've just released new track Can't Forget. I'm not sure exactly what we did to deserve this, but the track is taken from their SECOND ALBUM (!!) Life In Miniature which is releasing on 4th November, via their own label Emotional Interference. Now breathe. 

Can't Forget arrives with artwork born out of a collaboration between the band, creative director and sculptor Freya Douglas Ferguson, photographer Brian Rankin and floral artist MOS. The track has a brilliant live video, directed by the band themselves... my desperation to see them live again as soon as possible is growing by the second as I watch it. 

On the track, Carlos shares: "it's a reflection on the headyness of youth and a fear of growing up. Verse 2 is a nod to the day I left home; as I drove down the street, I caught my Dad crying and waving me away in the wing-mirror of my car. It's one of those memories that gets printed right onto the front of your mind and that you never forget."  

Follow Low Island - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Wednesday 6 July 2022

WATCH: Baby Queen - 'Nobody Really Cares'

I've been feeling a bit under the weather the past few days so it's a little quiet here at the moment, but I'm all sorts of excited to find new Baby Queen in my inbox. I've been fully embracing my Baby Queen era since the release of Heartstopper (on which her music features heavily, and for which she wrote the track Colours Of You). Nobody Really Cares is her latest release and it is another solid gold ~anthem~ for a generation. The message? Stop trying to please everybody else, express yourself however you want to - because who really cares?

Speaking on the track, she shares: "Nobody Really Cares is about realising it's okay to be yourself and do exactly what makes you happy because people are selfish in nature and only have so much space inside their brains reserved for you. I think it's really liberating to know that nobody cares about your self expression as much as you sometimes think they do so filtering yourself to please them is pointless." 

Follow Baby Queen - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.