Friday 25 November 2022

VIDEO PREMIERE: Emma Gatrill - 'Be Brave'

Somehow, criminally, I've never posted about Emma Gatrill's solo music here before - and yet it feels that rarely a week goes by where I'm not falling in love with a track that she's had some involvement in, often lusting over those gorgeous clarinet solos. I first came to Emma's work through Matthew and the Atlas, and have recently been loving tracks that she's played on by Maja Lena, Siv Jakobsen and Rachael Dadd. She's got fingers in many a lovely musical pie! This year, alongside creating a baby (a particularly sweet collaboration with Marcus Hamblett) Emma has been busy making lots of new music. There's an EP on the way, and first track Be Brave is out now. It's a delight to be asked to premiere the beautiful video for the track - enjoy!

On the track, Emma shares: "Be Brave is about how even when someone is going through something very difficult, time continues to pass. About how we all have the strength to keep going if we keep our eyes on the horizon during hard times. It is a reminder that we need to keep looking forwards and up, even when we feel down.

This whole batch of new songs was born from an attempt to invert my writing process - starting with rhythmic elements rather than with the harmonic and melodic harp and vocals. So in this case it started with some drums that Rob Pemberton sent over. We found two really nice bars that worked well played at the same time and looped them. One plays in the left speaker and one in the night. I wrote the song around this loop, exploring a tempo and rhythmic feel I might not have otherwise found. All the upcoming songs were written in this way, with lots of contributions from a wide range of drummers and producers."

Follow Emma Gatrill - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Thursday 17 November 2022

LISTEN: Rae Morris - 'birdsong on the breeze'

Goodness me. I love Rae Morris. So much. Her record Rachel@Fairyland is a shoe-in for my album of the year round-up (which will, in true CMAT style, arrive *very* late in the year) and it looks as if she's after a second spot in the list as she is releasing Rachel@Pianoland on 25th November. Ohhhhh yes! My personalised vinyl-only piano version of her previous record of Someone Out There is a prized possession - you could say that I'm a little bit excited for this. First track birdsong on the breeze (a reworking of Morning Isn't Morning) is out now and is completely and utterly sublime. If you love this as much as I do, Rae is heading out on tour from tomorrow (!) taking in Birmingham, Manchester, Bristol and London's Lafayette on Tuesday. Now, to persuade myself that Rae is absolutely worth tackling trains for and grab a London ticket... 

Follow Rae Morris online - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Tuesday 15 November 2022

WATCH: Dizzy - 'Barking Dog'

This is honestly one of the most exciting things to appear in my inbox for a long time - Dizzy are back!!!!! Ahhhhhhhh. I'm genuinely thrilled by this news. If you're new here, I've been sort of obsessed with them for a few years, and have a lot of love for their debut album Baby Teeth and its follow-up The Sun And Her Scorch. With more new music on the horizon for 2023, they're back with new single Barking Dog (via Communion Records) but things are looking a little different...

A new era for Dizzy sees singer Katie Munshaw donning a particularly striking mask in press photos and the music video for this track. On the (brilliant) reasoning behind this, Katie explains "I'm a very anxious and sensitive person. Thinking about taking a bunch of photos and videos of myself, especially after two years in isolation, felt a bit shocking and scary, and like something I didn't really want to do." 

"I find it strange how musicians are often introverted people, yet one of the largest parts of our job is visually selling ourselves to an audience. It feels unnatural to pine for strangers' attention to afford rent or whatever, and as someone who's particularly sensitive, it isn't sustainable. To me, the mask not only represents a calloused version of myself but it lends itself to an anonymity that I love. A Jane Doe of sorts. I like the idea of a female artist making the conscious decision to take her appearance out of the question for the audience."

On the video, Katie continues: "Our director was like, 'what if you just punched yourself in your face for three minutes straight?' and I was like 'Fuck it, why not?' We did three takes and by the end of it all I was pretty teary. I don't know that I will ever forget being in that bathroom with my pal feeling very safe and understood while simultaneously scared of my own feelings. 10/10 would punch myself in the face again." 

Follow Dizzy - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Friday 4 November 2022

WATCH: Elanor Moss - 'Cosmic Memory'

Slightly bewildering to think that the last gig I went to was in June (the lovely Memorial) - a show at which Elanor Moss was opening and was in beaaaaautiful form. Like, really good. Ridiculously talented, of course, but also a brilliant stage presence. With me just about getting over her debut EP Citrus, she's just announced the sequel, Cosmic, which is releasing via Blue Raincoat Music on 23rd February. The news arrives with the first taste of the EP, Cosmic Memory, Elanor's first full-band production. The marriage of Elanor's vocals and those strings... agh. Too good.

"'Cosmic' came after a year of exploration for me. I'd just moved to London, and was experimenting with different styles lyrically and musically, writing with friends for the first time, and visiting New York to work with my friend Oli Deakin on the new record. For the first time in my creative life I felt the freedom to be playful and experimental in the writing process, foraging for different ways to express complex feelings. Before, I was in the thick of a feeling without much perspective, this time I've embraced an approach of 'sometimes all you can do is laugh at yourself.' It's been a liberating rabbit hole to go down."

Follow Elanor Moss - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.

Wednesday 2 November 2022

WATCH: Brooke Bentham - 'Over and Over'

A slice of much deserved joy - Brooke Bentham is back, yesssss!!! We deserve this news. Brooke's record Everyday Nothing (and its stripped back counter-part Sunday Self) was one of my favourite releases of 2020, so I'm thrilled that she's back with a corker of a single, taken from an upcoming EP. The track was recorded with Patrick J Pearson at Middle Farm Studios.

On the track she shares: "'Over and Over' was written fast. It was my way of asking myself if I could just write a song that I didn't have to think too much about, but reflected where I was at. The last few years have been full of road trips, camping, staying indoors. It's my ode to road trips, getting away from life, feeling like yourself and enjoying being alive. I wanted it to physically sound like that." 

Follow Brooke Bentham - Facebook | Twitter | Instagram.