Saturday, 28 March 2015

Samm Henshaw - New Waves

Samm Henshaw is one of those artists that you’re probably going to find the words ‘classic soul’ lobbed at quite a bit. Because Samm (full name Iniabasi Samuel Henshaw) oozes the stuff. Even when he’s covering One Direction (honestly) and making it sound unrecognisable (in a good way - listen using this link) there’s a heartiness and warmth to both his voice and music that makes us want to start trotting out references like Bill Withers and Marvin Gaye. OK, that’s probably a bit over excitable, but this guy is cast from the stuff that defines talent. If we were the betting sort, we’d be putting money on him appearing on Later... with Jools Holland within the year.

Take a listen to his song Only Wanna Be With You (a free download) and remember his name. Is it too early to be starting our Ones to Watch for 2016 list yet? Maybe, but here’s a name that could be on it.

Samm Henshaw - Only Wanna Be With You

Adria - Falling

There were quite a few Banks comparisons floating around after Australian singer Adria released her debut song Pull Me Under. However, now she shows a more diverse sonic palette with a beautiful piano driven ballad called Falling. Feelings are shaken that bit more with the addition of stirring strings that take the song from its air of intimacy to something more grandiose and cinematic. We can imagine Adria singing this one standing under a simple spotlight, arms outstretched, wrapped up in the emotion of it all. Prepare yourself to feel that little bit more vulnerable and little bit lost. It’s not easy to combine both power and tenderness in a song without making a mess of it, but Adria gets it right.

Falling is taken from Adria’s debut Shell EP, due next week.

Adria - Falling

Friday, 27 March 2015

Fickle Friends - Could Be Wrong

In 2014 Fickle Friends was the 6th most blogged act by UK based Hype Machine listed bloggers. Of the five acts that finished ahead of them, three of the others (Marika Hackman, Banks and Wolf Alice) had featured in the Blog Sound of 2014 longlist (the music bloggers version of the BBC Sound of list), one was the already well established (Caribou) and the other (Låpsley) topped the Blog Sound of 2015 longlist. You can see the full list on this link here.

Up until now the acts who came 2nd, 3rd etc in the Blog Sound of 2015 poll hadn't been announced, but we can now reveal that Fickle Friends was a clear second. There was a direct correlation between artists that UK bloggers had featured the most on their blogs and who they voted for as their favourites. It’s probably no surprise to learn of that relationship but at least it shows that bloggers aren’t as…. fickle (sorry) in their tastes as some would make out.

So now it’s time for some new Fickle Friends material, the first song to be taken from the band’s forthcoming Velvet EP, due 25th May via Killing Moon Records in the UK and B3SCI Records in the US. It would be hard not to instantly recognise Could Be Wrong as anything but Fickle Friends. The song has that delightfully danceable indie-pop  mix of synths and guitars and Natassja’s charming coo of a voice that creates the bands signature sound. It’s pop music for indie kids that don’t like pop, indie music for dance heads who don’t like indie and dance music for pop kids who don’t like dance. Basically it’s music for everyone. OK, maybe if you’re only into metalcore you’re probably not going to like it, but then we could be wrong (sorry again). 

Fickle Friends are out on tour in the UK in early summer. Dates can be found on this link here.

Fickle Friends - Could Be Wrong

Florence & The Machine - St Jude (Video)

Who would have thought it? 

Florence & The Machine’s St Jude is the antithesis of her previous bombast. A gentle heart beat, a vulnerable vocal delivery that shows that emotion doesn’t have to contain over-played drama and a beautifully shot video with a gorgeous colour palette. St Jude “the patron saint of the lost causes, we were lost before she started,” doesn’t sound like a single, but bodes very well for Florence’s third album being something much more than a collection of radio hits. This is the sort of song we’d take to bed with us. Gorgeous.

Florence & The Machine - St Jude (Video)