Wednesday 27 April 2022

NEW #52 Supersaurus


Today’s new band claim to have a songwriting style that takes inspiration from Carly-Rae Jepsen and Chvrches. Yet on debut single Alice they sound a lot like early The 1975 circa 2013. Of course, it’s dangerous to start making comparisons when a band only has one single out; take Pale Waves for example who I threw exactly the same comparison at on their first official release, but now I’d compare with Avril Lavigne. We’ll all need a few more songs to make a better judgement, but this is a new music blog so sometimes super-early commitment is required.

The band in question is called Supersaurus, and a quick Google will tell you that they are a top UK wedding and party band available for hire, who are renowned for filling dance floors. Which just shows that you need to be careful with the internet. For that Supersaurus is a totally different band of the same name. Although maybe this lot could also soon be renowned for filling dance floors at your local indie disco perhaps?

So this Supersaurus, the one you need to focus on, is made up of Benji, Tay, Lauren and Becca. Their aforementioned debut single was released earlier this month. It’s a jubilant sounding piece of guitar pop, although if like THAT famous song you're asking who the f*ck is Alice, the answer is not exactly clear. One of the first lines is: “Hey Alice, I think I could have loved you, but you’re not real, no you were never real.” Elsewhere there are lines about: “It was all in my mind, all the beautiful things, that are lost in another timeline.” Is Alice just someone that Benji saw on line? Perhaps. Maybe she was just a dream? However, what is clear is that Alice (the song) swooshes with a guitar laden melody that would sound great on the radio. It also contains some great 'Hey' shouts, which anyone who has studied the Rules of Pop* will know is always encouraged. 

Warning: Earworm alert.

*Any version of the Rules of Pop - it's in Chapter 4 just after the section on singing La La La

Supersaurus - Alice (Video)

Friday 22 April 2022

NEW #51 Orchid


Orchid’s Insta bio describes her as a Goth Pussycat Doll. Her Twitter says she’s a Worldwide Quirky Girly. I’m going to add a far less witty three-word slogan and just describe her as Really Quite Good. 

You’ll probably agree with me on the Really Quite Good part when you hear her track Like Thunder which is taken from Orchid’s (aka Orchideh Vishkaiy) EP of the same name and it’s been pricking up ears over the last few weeks. It’s a minimalist piece of left of centre pop that crackles with the same sort of perfectly controlled yet still deviant experimentation that the first FKA Twigs album possessed. The accompanying visual also shows that it’s possible to shoot a video in a swimming pool without resorting to tackiness (anyone remember Sabrina’s Boys Boys Boys? Let’s not go there, OK?)

One listen to the whole of the EP, released a couple of weeks ago, will confirm two simple facts. First, Orchid isn’t a one trick pony. Second, she’s clearly in love with modern contemporary pop. Doe Eyes is the part of the Venn diagram where UK garage intersects with Britney Spears. Then there’s Later, which is a tempo shifting jam that hints at Ariana Grande and punches pretty hard with a radio friendly chorus. 

Of course, one of the things that sets the big names in pop apart is that they can do it live with venom and charisma. It’s early days for Orchid on that front and as yet there don’t seem to be any gigs announced. However, a little bit of internet searching reveals an artist of the same name supporting Glassio at The Old Blue Last in August. Could that be her? Quite possibly.

For now, let’s live with the recordings. Really quite good probably wasn’t up to scratch as a description, was it? Maybe instead let’s amend that to Quality New Pop-Star.

Orchid - Like Thunder (Video)

Orchid - Doe Eyes

Thursday 14 April 2022

NEW #50 Scene Queen


Scene Queen, born Hannah Collins in Ohio USA, is the latest addition to a crop of artists who are taking the sounds of RAWK, primarily the sound of nu-metal and industrial before mashing it up with hip-hop beats, nursery rhyme hooks and venomous spoken-word lyrics that go straight for the jugular of crap men.

“Pink rover, pink rover, please send the coward over. And if that bastard whistles, put a knife up to his boner,” Hannah narrates on Pink Rover as she brutally lets men know what she’s going to do about inappropriate harassment if they dare try it. In its 2 minutes of existence it rages hard. This isn’t punk rock, but pink rock as exemplified on three of the four songs she has released so far; Pink Bubblegum, Pretty in Pink (not a cover of the Psychedelic Furs song) and the aforementioned Pink Rover

Scene Queen brands her style of music as Bimbocore and if you like Ashnikko, Poppy and Poutyface then Hannah is going to be right down your kick-ass street.

Scene Queen releases her debut EP on April 29th. If you are in the UK watch out for her debut UK show at Great Escape festival this May.

Scene Queen - Pink Rover

Scene Queen - Pretty In Pink (Video)


Monday 4 April 2022

NEW #49 Caity Baser


Next month Europe’s largest new music festival, Great Escape, once again hits Brighton’s shores. Often touted as the festival to discover ‘the next big thing’ (acts I’ve seen at the festival in the past include early outings for Adele, Haim, Foals, London Grammar, Mumford & Sons, Celeste, Years & Years, Rag N Bone Man and Bastille before Dan Smith was playing under that name) it has struck me that this year, probably more than any other, becoming that ‘next big thing’ is a bigger and harder task that at any point before. 

Amongst this year’s bunch of musicians, it’s also noticeable that, reflecting the times, solo artists make up a bigger % of names treading the boards. A quick bit of detective work will also show you that a fair number of these have already found some degree of prominence on TikTok. Of course, it’s too early to really see if starting a career on Tik-Tok leads to long term success. Will today’s stars of Tik-Tok be the big festival headliners of tomorrow or will they be flashes in the pan as technology coaxes music consumers into developing ever shorter attention spans?

I mention both the Brighton festival and TikTok because today’s new artist is currently residing in Brighton, having moved there from another south coast city Southampton. She first got noticed on TikTok when her fan base exploded after she sang some lyrics and melody over a jazz guitar loop. Ironically though, Caity Baser (this is Caity B not that Katy B) hasn’t been added to the line up for Great Escape this year. Maybe it’s a bit too early for her to replicate her studio sound yet?

And a great sound it is as well. If Lily Allen was part of the My Space generation, then perhaps Caity is the Tik-Tok equivalent. The bold, chattin-shite late-teens relatable songs such as Slut Shaming, Haters and STD with its hook-in-your-head chorus of  “I heard you got an STD from sleeping with Molly, Libby and Sophie, you had the nerve to cheat on me, karma’s a bitch and now it’s out of your league,” roll along with reggae and dubby grooves, brassy punches and dance beats that sound a little like something you might have heard in the early 90’s on Boomania or World Clique

But this isn’t just a nostalgia trip. Caity’s sometimes gobby lyrics are timestamped with a very ‘now’ flavour. You’ll get a flow full of Google, Whats App, phone issues and student debt in her songs, the most recent of which, Friendly Sex, is the best tune you’ll hear about shagging your friend with benefits this year, mixing her chatty rap style with clicky garage beats and acoustic guitars. Expect it to be soundtracking a lot of TikTok videos soon. Elsewhere, another track from her Lil CB mix tape called Say It Like That delivers a chirpier pop sound not that far from someone like Baby Queen. She can do piano balladeering as well as she does on Virtually, demonstrating that she’s no one trick pony.

Could Caity Baser be the next big thing then? Well, that's a little pre-mature, but she’s certainly got the songs and the social media engagement to grow an audience. She might have a song called Average Student, but she’s clearly better than that.

Caity Baser - Friendly Sex

Caity Baser - STD (Video)