Tomás Novoa – ‘Vuelta al Sol’

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Originally from Chile but currently resident in Berlin, Tomás Novoa has a penchant for heavy basslines, organic rhythms and emotive sounscapes.

Latest single ‘Vuelta al Sol’ is an unhurried aural pleasure, with a touch of a magical, dreamy quality to it. Propelled (dreamily) forward on a smoothed driving techno beat, an intricately woven blend of soothing, alluring and irresistible beats wash over you as a soft sweep of pitter-patter electronics and harmonies are almost hazily pushed to the periphery, as has the smoothed driving techno beat. It is patient, slow-building and reveals itself gradually, fluttering between subtly euphoric and vaguely ambient it promises something spectacular before retracting and inner calm returns. Subtle, soothing and seductive; ‘Vuelta al Sol’ is a delight!

‘Vuelta al Sol’ is lifted from the Berlin-based producer’s 2017 EP Raíces, which is also available for free download here – result, no?

Prepare to be seduced by ‘Vuelta al Sol’ below.

Torin Bell – ‘Rain’

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Rain is the brand new EP from producer Torin Bell; a collection of three dreamy, fluid and tranquil instrumental jams.

Title-track ‘Rain’ captures the essence of what makes this EP such a joy. Shifting along at its own unhurried pace, this fluid piece of off-beat, ambient downtempo electronica floats along, leaving behind it a woozy sense of dreaminess. Joyful, refreshing and oozing of tranquillity with playful melodies, glistening strings providing a faux shower effect, it is the warped synths which are the pièce de résistance on offer here. ‘Rain’, and the rest of the EP, provide a soothing atmosphere of peace and dreamy respite from the trails and tribulations of modernity. And what’s the harm in that? Absolutely none.

No excuses either for not checking Bell’s work. Listen to ‘Rain’ below and the entire Ambient/Downtempo EP is out via Netlabel Electrolyt now. Listen to it here.

Duncan Lloyd – ‘FReak FAcade’

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Duncan Lloyd is probably best known as the guitarist in Maximo Park, but away from the day job, he’s kept himself busy with various side-projects including Decade In Exile, Nano Kino and solo work under his own name.

It is the latter which requires our attention today with Lloyd planning to release a new EP, FReak FAcade very soon. Ahead of which, he’s afforded us a glimpse of the title track and ‘FReak FAcade’ is a doozy. It is four-and-a-half-minutes of beautiful, wistful meanderings treated with lo-fi fuzz. Bristling with an unobtrusive moodiness, it is permeated with a sense of melancholy and understated optimism. Lloyd’s hushed vocal echoes through the shimmering guitar, which twinkle like stars in the night sky. A tantalising reminder of what Lloyd is capable of on his own; marvellous.

There is no date as yet for the forthcoming EP (watch this space I guess) but you can listen to ‘FReak FAcade’ below. Is is also available to download as a ‘pay what you like’ from Bandcamp.

Introducing: The Immediate

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There’s a bit or a role reversal with this one, all will become abundantly clear below….

The Immediate are a three-piece power pop band from Mold in north Wales. Originally active in the ’90s, they split in 1997 due to frustration, an argument over a mouth organ and the success of Stereophonics – all valid reasons, no?

Earlier this year however, the trio of of Duncan Farmer, Richard Harrison & Adam Walton reunited – the latter’s BBC Radio Wales show is one of my favourites and a fine source of superb new Welsh tunes (role reversal explained) – not for one last crack at fame but for the love of making music. This love and that of music from The Jam, Small Faces, Ride, Badfinger & Teenage Fanclub among others, shines through brightly. Crafting songs about hope and love in the face of the moribund, daily grind, playing to please only themselves, with no thoughts of success or acclaim and having fun along the way. Taken from their debut EP Shadows and Ghosts, ‘Yoko’ is a case in point. Succinctly summing up The Immediate’s raison d’etre in a scintillating three-minutes, ‘Yoko’ is a guitar heavy, riff-filled indie rocker bursting with melody and vitality; and in Walton’s own words, it’s ace! Sometimes that is quite enough.

There is an album in the offing for the new year but for now, why not give ‘Yoko’ a spin below. You can get their debut EP, Shadows and Ghosts as a free download via Bandcamp.

Trails And Ways Share New Single ‘Happiness'; The Second From Their Forthcoming LP

Trails and Ways are gearing up to release their new album, Own It on October 7th.

There is no one better when it comes to sun-drenched, tropical-tinged indie-pop – something laid out emphatically by their wonderfully infectious debut LP, Pathology. The California foursome’s latest single ‘Happiness’ – the second to be lifted from the forthcoming record, following ‘My Things’ earlier this summer – is a blissful, buoyant synth-filled track. ‘Happiness’ with its crisp and bright guitar melody, bubbly chorus, joy-inducing hand claps, powerful rhythmic bass lines and charming male/female vocal interchanges, on the surface at least, everything seems blissfully all right. Lyrically however ‘Happiness’ delves into the challenging issue of whether human pursuit of happiness is impossible and it it is the juxtaposition between this and the carefree sound that makes this tune what it is; magnificent!

Trails and Ways also have a massive tour coming up too, so check here to see if they are playing a town near you soon!

You can listen to ‘Happiness’ below and the new LP, Own It is out on October 7th.