WOB! – ‘Syncopate’

WOB! is a Serbian/Irish drummer, electronic music producer and DJ with a preference and precocious talent for crafting elegant & fluid compositions encompassing parts electronica, electro-pop, drum & bass and house.

Latest single from WOB!, ‘Syncopate’, is a perfect exponent of this spirit. Shifting along a sea of squiggling, squelching basslines and flurry of fluid beats ‘Syncopate’ moves with a fluid, liquid-like dexterity. Brimming with chill out vibes, stabs of Balearic-esque keys and flourishes of synths and harmonic vocals, this is an utterly transfixing three-minutes of infectious, neon-bright and beautiful electronica.

Also, WOB! teamed up with artists from Poland to create the stunning laser powered visuals on the video for ‘Syncopate’, lead by Okime Emiko – check it and the single itself below now.

WOB! will be performing live with four-piece band on April 12 in Brewery Corner, Kilkenny and June 2 at Vantastival. Tune in below:

Adam Melchor – ‘Plan on You’

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Adam Melchor is a Jersey-born, Los Angeles-based singer/songwriter with a penchant for rich, melodic and heartfelt old-fashioned pop.

Melchor introduced himself to us last month with swooning slice of orchestral-esque pop ‘3 Hours Ahead’ and as he prepares to release his Plan on You EP this month, he has returned with the equally alluring ‘Plan on You’. It is an intoxicating single, sweet, heartfelt and imbued with a pang of nostalgia. Drifting, delicately, this wistful indie-pop ballad purrs with a rich, dripping melody. It is a beautiful song plain and simple – musically and lyrically – it is warm, hazy and heart-strung. It will take a cold heart to be enamoured by this beauty.

Listen to ‘Plan on You’ below – and keep your eyes peeled for the Plan on You EP later this month.

O Future – ‘Voyeur’

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Formerly known as OOFJ, O Future is the pairing of Katherine Mills Rymer from South Africa and Jens Bjornkjaer originally from Denmark, who both now reside in Los Angeles.

Together, the pair have cultivated something of a niche, fusing electronic, orchestral and art pop music to create a colourful, imaginative and dance-y tunes that will get firmly lodged in your head, as evidenced by previous single ‘Smell You’ and latest effort ‘Voyeur’. It is a tantalizing meeting of eerie, somewhat menacing, yet sweeping symphonic sound. ‘Voyeur’ is jittery and claustrophobic as quickfire drumbeat hits first, accompanied by somewhat manic synths and buzzing bass it swells, growing more intense in tandem with Mills Rymer’s breathy but increasingly feverish vocals. A stunning and seductive single that is beautiful yet eerie, with the sweeping orchestra strings adding a final alluring touch of cinematic class and sweeping grandeur.

Listen to ‘Voyeur’ below – and there is more here.

Adam Melchor – ‘3 Hours Ahead’

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Adam Melchor is a Jersey-born, Los Angeles-based singer/songwriter with a penchant for rich, melodic and heartfelt old-fashioned pop.

Originally trained as an opera singer, with his new single ‘3 Hours Ahead’, Melchor wistfully weaves a wide-eyed ode to friendship across time zones. Led by beautiful keys and dramatic dripping melodies, ‘3 Hours Ahead’ moves along a soft, steady and hushed drumbeat. There is a softness to his tone, conveying an intimate vibe and vulnerability that coalesce with some swooning orchestral-esque vibes, a gentle acoustic strum and lush layered vocals, vivid lyrics and beautiful keys. While he’s got quite a few releases already under his belt, his latest effort finds him in fine form, with his best and most affecting work to date. ‘3 Hours Ahead’ is beautiful song plain and simple – musically and lyrically – it is powerful and emotive, with a melancholic and lamentable feel. Beautiful and compelling, this is brilliantly moving.

Listen to ‘3 Hours Ahead’ below now:

Death Hags – ‘Electrochemical Communication’

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Death Hags is the multifaceted project of Los Angeles-based, French electronica artist, Lola Jean. Working mostly from the secluded hideaway hills of East LA, Jean crafts hypnotic, futuristic and minimal electronica inspired by the likes of like Brian Eno or Björk.

The latest release from the enigmatic creative force that is Death Hags, is new single ‘Electrochemical Communication’. A hypnotic, futuristic and post-industrial-themed track, it revels in its charmingly monotony and krautrock-esque gripping repetitiousness. A steady drum machine tips along at a metronomic pace and joined by hooks and melody, as synths swarm and cascade to create a rich atmospheric soundscape; a perfect backdrop for Jean’s soothing vocals and poetic lyrics (in both English and French) to thrive. ‘Electrochemical Communication’ is born of a shadowy futuristic world of that is hypnotic, dreamy and filled with spellbinding electronic beats; simply astounding.

Listen to ‘Electrochemical Communication’ below:

Lauran Hibberd – ‘Sugardaddy’

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Isle of Wight native Lauran Hibberd has spent the past 12 months building a name for herself with her colourful brand of fuzz-filled indie pop, and she has kicked off 2019 with pulsating anthem ‘Sugardaddy’.

With explosively exciting fashion, ‘Sugardaddy’ gloriously parades the irresistible facets of Hibberd’s brand of melodic, indie-pop goodness. It is insanely catchy and addictive, littered with gloriously sweet harmonies, crunchy guitars, absorbing riffs and a light coat of fuzz, while the wonderfully playful, tongue in cheek lyrics adding a final sprinkle of magic dust on top. As Hibberd says herself, “it’s like wrapping bubblegum around depression…”, ‘Sugardaddy’ is three-minutes of guitar-pop perfection and an irresistibly infectious little earmworm that will be fizzing around your head for days and days.

‘Sugardaddy’ is out now & you can listen to it below.

Lauran Hibberd will join Hippo Campus in The Green Room, The Academy, Dublin on February 19th.

Ben’s Imaginary Band – ‘Celebrity’

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Ben’s Imaginary Band is the work of Ben Romvari, a Canadian musician with a serious penchant for DIY and indie. Essentially a one-man band with Romvari looking after every role possible; he writes, records, and mixes his tracks in DIY studios based in Victoria, BC.

To date, Romvari has three albums to his name (or Ben’s Imaginary Band rather) Nocturnal Fables and Illusions (2007), Trust (2011) and The Apartment (2018); all characterised by intimate, deeply personal, melodic, somewhat melancholic and beautiful songs. Ben’s Imaginary Band’s latest single ‘Celebrity’, lifted from the latter record, is adorned with all the aforementioned attributes. ‘Celebrity’ is a charming, heartfelt and soft-centred piece of indie-pop balladry. Drifting along some gently tripping percussion and stripped back instrumentation, ‘Celebrity’ is dripping with melody and pitted with an idiosyncratic, kind of quirky sensibility as Romvari’s hushed, whispering vocals tug at the heartstrings.

Listen to ‘Celebrity’ below and The Apartment comes highly recommended also – listen to it here.

Martha Ffion – ‘Kennedy Hair’

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Last year, Martha Ffion released my favourite record of 2018 with her long-awaited debut LP Sunday Best; a beautiful record filled with gleaming guitar-pop, wistful-ballads, swooning sixties inspired indie-pop and touches of folk & country.

The Irish-born, Glasgow-based singer-songwriter is back with a wonderful new single ‘Kennedy Hair’; a super catchy slice of bittersweet indie-pop. Working with the excellent Lost Map Records again, ‘Kennedy Hair’ the first release in the label’s brand new PostMap Club – a series of postcard releases and other exclusives – references It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia while critiquing post-Brexit politics. As evidenced throughout her debut, Ffion’s prowess for observation is second to none. Lyrically she is clever, witty, and often times a sharp tongued, while her ear for a melody is only rivalled by her powers for observation, making for an incredibly infectious, lush and beautiful song. A phenomenally catchy slice of swooning, bittersweet indie-pop, it will be bobbing around your head all day, and you will be all the better for it.

Listen to ‘Kennedy Hair’ below and find you more about PostMap Club here.

Martha Ffion also appeared on the latest episode of NPR’s ‘World Cafe’ for music and a chat, you listen to that here too.

Laughed The Boy – ‘Leave Me Here’

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Laughed The Boy are Toronto-based indie trio – comprised of brothers Chris and Sean Panacci and Brennan Hrehoruk – whose speciality is exploring a genuine love of unpretentious 90’s nostalgia.

The trio’s output thus far has been impressive – the high point of their early endeavours is undoubtedly their resplendent debut LP Here is Fine, released last year, it is littered with easy going tunes filled with catchy melodies and fuzzy guitars. What draws our attention today is new single ‘Leave Me Here’ – which originally appeared as a b-side to ‘Late Afternoon’ in 2017 – and it is a doozy. It is laid-back, blissful and slumbering song with warm, mildly fuzzy guitar, sweet melodies, soft vocals and dreamy synth that twinkles beautifully, like stars in the might sky. ‘Leave Me Here’ takes the band’s signature blend of catchy melodies and fuzzy guitar, swirls it together with jangly guitar hooks, breezy vocal harmonies and dreamy synth for an infectious blend of loose, laidback, dreamy pop delight.

Listen to ‘Leave Me Here’ below – their debut album is here too. Laughed the Boy are currently busying themselves with a new record.

Heavy Heart – ‘Bed Bug’

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What started as a lo-fi, bedroom project in a tiny flat above the main road in New Cross, south London, Heavy Heart comprised of Anna Vincent (lead vocals, guitar), Patrick Fitzroy (guitar, backing vocals), James Vincent (guitar, backing vocals) and Craig Brown (drums), has grown and flourished to yield some marvellous results.

Heavy Heart spent 2016 writing, recording and releasing a new song each month that year, and then collaborated with vinyl-only label I Can & I Will to re-release all twelve tracks as a limited-edition LP entitled Keepsake. With a new EP out this Spring, the London four-piece have shared sublime new single, ‘Bed Bug’, the first of three mixed and co-produced by Gabe Wax (The War On Drugs, Fleet Foxes and Soccer Mommy).

A bright, shimmering tune from the get go, Heavy Heart proceed to explore the worlds of ‘90s indie rock, shoegaze and dream pop over the course of four-and-a-half minutes sprinkled with yearning, melancholy, hope and glistening guitar lines and a massive sound. Opening with an burst of drums and guitars, it grabs your attention through jangling guitar riffs and crisp but haunted vocals that plunges into a soaring bittersweet chorus full of lamenting heartache with a lush backdrop of shimmering strings as ‘Bed Bug’ goes huge on the hooks and choruses. It also showcases a prowess for crafting brilliant melodies and tight harmonies, interspersed with crashing drums that are matched by taut, twisting chords and we’ve got a MASSIVE sound. Delicate but powerful, layers of guitars, fuzz, distortion and whirring are moulded into something beautiful, transfixing you as it ekes out a perfect space between light and shade.

Tune in below.