Velodrome – ‘His Physique’

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Velodrome is the experimental project of London-based DIY singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Kate Evans.

Evans embraces a charming exploration of baroque vocals, layers of melody & quirky lyrics with a lo-fi, retro aesthetic, as demonstrated with formidable dexterity on debut single ‘His Physique’. It’s a transfixing off-kilter concoction of sweet and catchy harmonies and melodies, with offbeat lo-fi psych-pop that playfully bubbles along with a bouncy charm. Evans’ delivery can be gentle, making her seem like the shyest of characters at times while on other occasions, her compelling baroque vocals sweep in to blow everything else out of the water. There is a slightly bonkers strangeness at play too but this musical whimsy probably wouldn’t resonate so much were it not for the moments of melodic sweetness – but thankfully, both are in plentiful supply. A fantastic opening intro to Velodrome and hopefully there’s plenty more brilliant bouts of offbeat lo-fi psych-pop on the horizon.

Listen to ‘His Physique’ below now.

Blackaby – ‘Georgie Wants A Garden’

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‘Georgie Wants A Garden’ is the sunny new single from Blackaby, a London trio fronted by William Blackaby and released through the Record in Peace label’s, RIP Introduces series.

The series, now on its second volume, shines a light on emerging artists and collecting them for an end of year vinyl compilation; the latest, as we said, is ‘Georgie Wants A Garden’. It is a three-minute outpouring of good vibes as heavenly harmonies ebb and flow over the gentle guitars and soft, almost brushed percussion. The trio’s take on ’60s inspired folk-pop is divine, with a loungey, lazy-day feel and shimmering, sunkissed glow making for an irresistibly lush tune as it skips on by. An absolute delight!

Listen to ‘Georgie Wants A Garden’ below. Volume 1 of the RIP Introduces series is here too.

 

Horizons Acts for 2018 Announced & Playlist

Horizons-2018

As regular patrons of the site will be acutely aware I have a great fondness for Wales, and more specifically Welsh music (not to mention the footballing powerhouse that is Wrexham AFC).

For a relatively small place, Wales does rather well for itself musically and for somewhere of its size, it is surely unmatched in both quality and quantity. From the towns and cities, mountains and valleys, Wales proves itself time and time again, to be an ever reliable source of creative, superbly inventive and experimental sounds across a myriad of genres.

While I am entirely grateful for the seemingly never ending stream of wondrous sounds, something apparent from a casual listen to Adam Walton’s excellent BBC Radio Wales Programme (see also Bethan Elfyn also of BBC Radio Wales & Lisa Gwilym’s C2 on BBC Radio Cymru) or cursory glance at the Focus Wales lineup or the Horizons showcase.

It is the latter that draws our attention today – a collaboration between BBC Wales and Arts Council of Wales – Horizons aims to showcase exciting new, independent contemporary music in Wales, providing promotional and performance opportunities, incl. festival slots throughout the year.

Just this week, the twelve acts selected from across Wales for Horizons 2018 were announced. There are some familiar names in there; Adwaith, Campfire Social, CHROMA and Nia Wyn, and some new; Himalayas, I See Rivers, Aleighcia Scott, Alffa, Eadyth, Marged, No Good Boyo and The Pitchforks. Either way, new acquaintances or old, it is an incredibly diverse array of artists.

You can, like me, delve in below:

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Bad Flamingo – ‘Running from the Lawman’

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Mysterious masked musical duo Bad Flamingo introduced us to their slick blend of Americana-tinged, exquisite pop finesse with stellar single, ‘Lucky Ones’.

Close to 12 months on and the pair are back with a new single ‘Running from the Lawman’ – and its one that not only continues the high quality but also the western theme. It drips of infectious, sun-drenched tones as it shuffles along strutting basslines, smokey acoustic guitars and a drum beat that trots as the smouldering vocals slink their way between the instrumentation, meandering through the hazy, desert like atmosphere. There is a real air of mystery and intrigue to ‘Running from the Lawman’ with its desert-drenched guitar riffs and swaggering sun-beaten groove. At just over three minutes, ‘Running from the Lawman’ slinks its way into your head, and will be be pleasantly floating there all day.

Listen to ‘Running from the Lawman’ below and rumour has it that a debut LP may be forthcoming in the not so distant future, so keep an eye out for that too.

Accü – ‘Did You Count Your Eyes?’

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Accü is the multifaceted, genre blending solo project of Cardiff-based musician and producer Angharad Van Rijswijk.

Formerly one half of Welsh folk-electronica duo Trwbador, Van Rijswijk previously introduced Accü with a series of super and distinctive slices of otherworldly electronica, and collaborations with Cornershop and Kayla Painter. Accü’s is prepping the release of debut album Echo The Red, due out late this summer, and it is preceded by lead single ‘Did You Count Your Eyes?'; and oh my, it is quite something.

An offbeat exploration of imaginative experimentation and colourful, kaleidoscopic sounds, ‘Did You Count Your Eyes?’ is a spellbinding cosmic sojourn to psychedelic space. Fusing elements of frayed electronics, squelchy synths, soft-edged psych-pop it tips along a tidy drum beat with reverb-laced vocals swaying through a cascading sequence of crackling, frazzled electronics. Moving with a dreamlike, otherworldly aura; ‘Did You Count Your Eyes?’ is colourful, imaginative and fearlessly exploratory off-kilter pop.

Feast your ears on the hazy magic that is ‘Did You Count Your Eyes?’ below, it’s out on May 25 through the impressive Libertino Recordings.

Accü’s debut album Echo The Red is due latter this summer – eyes peeled.