Singer-songwriter Raquel Kiaraa just dropped her new EP called Defying Odds and its lead single “Love Got Me Sick”. A beautiful collection of Raquel’s most exciting songs brimming with originality and spirit, this EP is a must-hear for all pop music fans.
The title of the EP is meant to speak to women’s innate power of giving birth, of living their dreams, and overcoming any and every obstacle. An empowering and thoughtful title for sure, it embodies Raquel’s strength as a person, singer, business lady, mother and so much more.
Lot of Raquel’s previous work has been very well-received by the audience, including “Scorpio”, “Release Me”, and “We Know” with hundreds of thousands of views altogether.
It’s hard not to show a bit of favoritism when it comes to music from my hometown. And it’s not hard to justify – Brisbane has a rich musical heritage dating back to The Saints. There might just be something in the air, but there is something about the place that makes it fertile ground for music from a range of genres.
“Blue” is the first full-length album from Brisbane’s own Foreign Technology and it is another solid offering from the river city. A departure from his earlier Gary Numan inspired work, Blue sees Foreign Technology (aka Stephen Donohue) step into the world of big beat, plunging the listener into a sonic landscape that bears similarities to early Chemical Brothers. The opening track, “Beat-Ten” is a statement of intent – a mix of break beats and distorted bass lines that is designed to get the listener moving. The following seven tracks change up the pace, but the focus is always on big dance grooves. For me the standouts include the opening track, the acid-line catchiness of “Deeper” and the electro stylings of “Uprockt”.
Released on May 14 through Pink Dolphin Music, this is a superb album, full of big beat gems. Like I said, as a fellow Brisbanite, I might just be a little biased, but what can I do? I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this and I would highly recommend you take the time to do the same. I am not going to give my usual score out of five for this – rather…
EnilSounds Release Peaceful Ambient Soft Electronic New Music
ENILSounds – The Eagle – Instrumental and Vocal Versions
This is a bit of a different review for me – I am actually reviewing two songs that are one. Hailing from Denmark, ENILSounds released her most recent track – The Eagle (Instrumental) on April 30. The instrumental, however, is a stripped back version of the original track, which was released in March. My words here speak to both – two tracks that are equally beautiful and indicative of a talent that has only improved over the years.
ENILSounds’ music is best described as a “soft electronica” – a mix of ambience, new age sounds, moving piano work and touches of synthesized sounds. Her gentle approach to production is best heard in the more recent instrumental version, where sounds appear and disappear, and where melancholy piano chords hint at a longing that may just be beyond reach. The earlier version takes this and adds a vocal performance that is simultaneously fragile and assured. It takes the track to new heights – demonstrating first class song-writing skills from an artist who has created a sound that is truly unique.
I would strongly recommend listening to these two tracks – perhaps starting with the instrumental before moving on to the vocal version. In this way, you will truly come to appreciate the craft on display. The Eagle (Instrumental) and The Eagle demonstrate why ENILSounds is an artist to watch out for.
Simon says 4.5 stars out of 5 for the instrumental and 5 out of 5 stars for the vocal version.
Madison Mueller Releases New Music that Hits The Sweet Spot
Madison Mueller Releases New Music that Hits The Sweet Spot
With a rustic intro which remotely resembles a folk-indie-rock shuffle before it unfolds into a very satisfying groove, taking Madison Mueller’s brand new single, ‘Sweet Bitterness’ right into that sweet spot.
‘Sweet Bitterness’, due for release this Wednesday 28th April is one she should be extremely proud of! A clean production, great song and Maddie’s undeniable unique and instantly recognisable vocals hit’s the mark yet again for this talented young lady.
If you’re familiar with Madison Mueller, then you would have followed her journey thus far, observing and enjoying her previous works watching her grow.
This one in particular, pleasantly holds onto the indie feel while incorporating a commercial sound which should be well accepted and snapped up for FM radio.
Produced by 25-time gold and platinum talent, Michael Jack along with Madison Mueller, it is so nice to hear that the sound of Maddie has not been lost, but pleasantly enhanced.
So, to all Maddie’s existing fans, there’s no need to worry, you will be into this one within a minute of playing the song!
Michael Jack brought some well-known musicians on the single which include: Davide Direnzo on Drums, Ed Roman on Bass, ‘High String’ acoustic guitar by Chris Tomchak, while the mastering by Peter Letros all added to this marvellous track.
Along with the obvious vocals, Maddie also plays Acoustic guitar and keyboards.
Make sure you listen to it now! You will love it 🙂
Franz Kirmann and Roberto Grosso Beautifully Crafted Music
Franz Kirmann and Roberto Grosso – Songe (from the In Waves EP)
Some music just needs to be heard. Some music is just so beautifully crafted that it would seem wrong for it not to reach the listeners that it so richly deserves. “Songe”, from the “In Waves” EP by French producer Franz Kirmann and Italian artist Roberto Grosso, is one such piece of music.
The track begins with a lush, ambient synth pad before adding a drum pulse and a simple melodic loop. Over the top of this is added a guitar figure that helps propel and develop the track. The addition of a bass and percussion towards the end of the track only serves to add additional layers of beauty to what is a carefully crafted song. The overall sound is grainy yet clear – cinematic yet personal. The overall impression is haunting yet peaceful.
I think I was wise to listen to this through headphones, as this is music that is made for repeated close listens. I highly recommend this track to anyone interested in music that gives more to its listeners than does the standard fare on radios around the world. “Songe” is the closing track of the “In Waves” EP and is out now through Days of Being Wild. Take some time to immerse yourself in its sounds – this is music that needs to be heard.
Lalalow Sensory Deprivation Will TransportYou Back
Lalalow – Sensory Deprivation
In the nineties, I spent a lot of time listening to female-fronted electronic acts such as Lamb, Single Gun Theory and Everything But The Girl – acts whose music was characterized by lush synths, fractured beats and ethereal vocals. I took comfort in the way these acts could produce sounds and songs that seemed to wash over me, allowing me to float away.
I was transported back to those times and those sounds when I listened to “Sensory Deprivation” by Lalalow. The Finnish electronic pop duo, consisting of Nina Jackson on vocals and keys and Tommy Laivamaa on guitar and bass have produced a hypnotic piece of chilled, downtempo pop here. The production is sparse and centers on lush synth pads, minimal drums and a bass phrase that serves to add momentum. Over the top of this sits Jackson’s vocals – whispered in places and haunting – reinforcing the themes of isolation and disconnection from reality that tie the lyrics together.
Like so many tracks recently, I am a little bit late to the party on this one. Released in February, chances are that you may have come across it already. However, if you haven’t, take some time to check it out. Lalalow has delivered something quiet special with “Sensory Deprivation” and you will be richly rewarded if you give it a listen.
Quote The Raven’s Home Is Worth The Blues is Soothing, Sad and Brilliant
Quote The Raven – Home is Worth the Blues
Place Your Bets On Talented Singer Laine Gardner
Sometimes things happen in your life for a reason, sometimes we don’t know why or what the universe is trying to tell us, but there must have been a reason for my wanting to click on the email out of hundreds, to listen to this track……and then that reason was clear.
When a song begins by pulling you in within the first 30 secs you know it’s worth listening to.
As soon as Kirsten Rodden-Clarke opens with her warm and captivating voice with ‘Baby I’ve been gone….’ I was in.
Que Jordan Coaker and the track blossomed like watching a sunflower opening in fast motion loaded with emotion and near perfect harmony.
Home is Worth the Blues is a simple yet a powerful song both lyrically and musically that shows the combination of what this duo has to offer; it’s simply beautiful.
Perhaps it’s my current state of mind as I hung off every word, and when I couldn’t quite hear what that lyric was, I went to the extent of emailing and asking for the lyrics. (something I never do)
If you know me and how meticulous and hard to please I am, this is saying a lot, and to add to this, I was never a great fan of the generalised folk genre of music.
The song was written by Jorden, Kirsten and Blake Reid and is an ode to their working lives for the joys that home provides.
Prior to this track, Quote the Raven had success from their Christmas single, “Lonely Christmas” and “Hope” which was a summer release resulting on the TRAX Canada Country Top 100 for over 24 weeks!
Quote the Raven states, “Written in a slaughterhouse in Calgary, the single was inspired by the environment, the stories told and the history within the building,…We want this song to resonate with those who are always working tirelessly to make ends meet and to know their voices are heard.”
The lyrics could be related to any situation that applies to what any individual is encountering in their lives and I found this extremely soothing, sad and brilliant!
Can’t wait for their upcoming album ‘Can’t Hold the Light’.
Club Bombardier Release Blistering Diverse Standout EP Run Mofo
Club Bombardier – Run Mofo (EP)
Hailing from Paris, Club Bombardier creates a brand of rock and roll that is complex yet simple, derivative yet original, and immediately appealing. Their latest EP, Run Mofo, released in February this year, shows off the range of diverse, yet complementary rock stylings.
“2nd Advice” kicks off proceedings, and here the three-piece deliver a blistering slice of punk-rock inspired, hard driven rock. This is four to the floor rock coupled with catchy hooks. “Perpetual Movement” sees the band slow down the pace and introduce more angular grooves and defined choruses. The third track, “Praha” is a standout for me. Demonstrating the band’s debt to Britpop, the track occasionally gives hints of the whimsy that was ever-present in that genre. “Virtual Vortex” is another change of pace, and here we detect elements of the stoner rock jams evident on classic Kyuss albums. Following on from this comes “In Time”, the most “contemporary” sounding of the tracks and what might count as the EP’s ballad. The closing track, “Nothing Personal” kicks off with a wonderful, distorted bass groove, before settling into a sound reminiscent of the opener – lending a pleasing symmetry to the EP.
It’s rare to listen to an album or EP and immediately be taken in. Club Bombardier manages this here and they are to be congratulated for it. I should also mention that they have coupled a fine collection of tracks with a wonderfully evocative piece of cover art – a detail that I notice a number of otherwise fine artists sometimes forget.
Neonian Vaxxor EP Demonstrates A Solid Slice Of Electronic Music
Neonian – Vaxxor
It’s been a long while since I last wrote a review for Music Talks and it is a pleasure to be back. I want to kick off 2021 with a review of the Vaxxor EP from UK-based producer Neonian (aka Ian Sawyer). Hailing from Bath, England, Neonian cites his influences as New Order, Chemical Brothers and Orbital, amongst others, and it most certainly shows. I would add to the list 808 State, as the influence of that seminal act looms large here.
The title track kicks things off and I was immediately taken to a happy place. Early 90s raves were a formative musical experience for me and the sounds on offer here – break beats, loops and bright synths – transported me back in time. The following track begins with a colder, trance feel, but the housebreaks, samples and synths make another showing. Track three – Hypnic Jerk – dials back the pace, but the early 90s vibe keeps on. The closing track, Proof To Tower keeps the pace slow, but adds mysterious swirling synths to balance the fat bass tones and rapid-fire percussion that links Neonian’s sounds to more recent musical developments.
Released through WEATNU Records, this is a solid slice of electronic music, demonstrating a nice variety of grooves and ideas. As a fan of 90s electronic music, this EP is right up my alley. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
The promising rap talent JGOTITT has been releasing music the whole year, and many were considering him an artist with a high potential who one day was going to make a difference in the rap scene, and become an inseparable part of it. That “one day” has come sooner than expected. The artist’s new release “Bounce That Ass” is a clear message he shares with the fans that he owns the rap scene and claims his superiority in it.
The message is beautifully implied in the music video for the release where he is presented not just as some starting artist but one with a special status. Beautiful ladies show their beautiful behinds and twerk around him while he sings his catchy verses one after another in a perfect flow of motion, sound, and voice. Everything about the release is professional to the very essence.
Classical Crossover Icon Summer Watson Releases Latest Single “Unveiled”
Classical crossover soprano singer Summer Watson has recently made the headlines as she entered the world of songwriting with two new releases, “Break The Silence” and “Unveiled.” Off her upcoming album, both tracks show Summer Watson at her highest inspiration, and well determined to share her wisdom with the masses. Having overcome stage 4 breast cancer as well as being a survivor of a horrific train accident, she knows the value of being alive better than most. In a way, her music is aimed at reviving our appreciation and gratitude for life as well as an encouragement to speak up and share our true selves with the world rather than keeping things buried inside for years.
Her soft soprano vocal performance is deeply moving both on “Break The Silence” and “Unveiled,” paving the way for a resounding success when the full album gets finally released.
Have a listen for yourself to “Unveiled” below and dive deep into Summer Watson’s magical voice:
Seekay Shares Infinite Pain On New Electronica-Pop Single “Wiser”
London-based producer Seekay returns with a deeply moving piece, a single titled “Wiser.” The song is about abuse and how naive we can be when we are young, accepting the unacceptable. Seekay has joined forces with the beautiful vocalist Chloe who has done a fantastic job at understanding Seekay’s main artistic intention. The electronica-pop track is one of the most accomplished releases by Seekay so far, and following-up on the astonishing “Hold” and “Fall.”
He has made it his specialty to blend the deepest lyrics with atmospheric soundscapes that will take listeners on a unique journey where meaning, beauty, and pain dance all together in a perfectly synchronized ballet of sounds.
Andy Keels Released The First Single “Dead To Me” Off His Upcoming EP Fifteen Years
Andy Keels got started with singing and writing music when he was in secondary school and ever since he never missed the opportunity to improve and perform whenever he could. Inspired by representatives of many different genres like Boys to Men, Johnny Cash, Kurt Cobain, The Rolling Stones, Oasis, and songwriter and producer Max Martin (NSYNC), Andy made a decision on how exactly he wants to sound like and we love it.
Releasing “Dead To Me” off his upcoming EP as the first one to make the right first impression we hope that the rest of the tracklist won’t differ much and will burst a range of indie/pop/rock influences with raw and rocky undertones as “Dead To Me” does. Nonetheless, this song is forming a flawless, ingenious artistic statement by someone who has clearly been working hard in bringing his craft closer to impeccability.It may safely be said that it is not an easy job to make any kind of music sound this fresh and perfect nowadays.
During recent years, disco vibe lovers definitely have felt the deficit of the ’70s 80’s mainstream. There are very few releases in the then-popular genre. However, young Baie-Saint-Paul, Canada-based singer-songwriter Yann Brassard brings back the quality disco sound with his new release “Overnight.” Unlike his previous releases, “Mission Commando” and “Dangereuse,” both in French, the release is English.
The artist shows his talent and full potential with “Overnight.” Many knew about his abilities way before when he was a finalist of Québec’s La Voix 6. However, the wide audience got the chance to see his full palette with “Overnight.” The fact that Yann uses his mouth only to make all the instrumental sounds, besides the drum parts, shows his uniqueness and multi-talented creative mind.
Vallyre, Boston-based singer-songwriter, released her new song, “Bloodsweat,” an explosive and enchanting pop ballad with mystic soundscapes and warm vocals. The song was co-written with producer Howie Moscovitch. Later, Vallyre alone released a short music video for the song produced by herself. The visuals transcend her powerful, driven energy and passion, all of which are inseparable components of the song. The singer also enjoys acting in her spare time, explaining the artistic approach to the music video. The song is filled with beautiful and melodic hooks. Her vocals, appearance, and the mood of the music video are all playful yet inspiring in-depth. There is a certain kind of darkness existing in every element in all positivity and light of the release. Altogether, the release is a perfect example of detailed work and talent.
Growing up in Malaysia Amirah began to master her craftsmanship as a singer and songwriter at the tender age of 11. Today the award-winning singer-songwriter with the diversity of her background shares with us a brand new music video for her powerful song “Tell Me.” “Tell Me” carries an important message for today while the US presidential election’s results are still obscure: it is calling everyone to unite for a world where we are all accepted for our differences, regardless of race, religion, culture, nationality, status, gender, or sexual orientation because we are all one. However, these days the internet is abuzz with celebrations of the election results, as well as Kamala Harris being the first (half) Indian in the White House.Amirah, being half-Indian herself is using two Indian instruments tanpura and tabla on “Tell Me” while blending them with modern harmonies of Western music creating a perfect melting pot of cultures: It embodies the perfect scene where East meets West.
Have a listen to her astonishing vocals and the words of wisdom by hitting the play button below.
As our planet faces uncertainty through recent challenges, Blakk Mantra’s message of hope, peace, and love are more necessary than ever. That is why we are thrilled to announce their brand new release, an EP of two songs titled Welcome To El Rey Blvd. After releasing their previous EP Where There’s Smoke There’s Dope, Blakk Mantra haven’t gotten lazy and worked hard while creating their new songs “Perhaps We’ll Live” and “Queen Of Infinite Space” the main component of Welcome To El Rey Blvd. With these two songs, a little over six minutes, Blakk Mantra managed to show us more mastery and superiority than other groups could do over a whole album’s length. It is their independent mindset and undeniable temper that makes Blakk Mantra a great rock band and Welcome To El Rey Blvd is a crucial chapter in their musical career with all its gripping and instantly captivating choruses and melodies, mostly thanks to Johnny Noble’s and Amber Alexander’s emotive delivery.
Going back to the past is never easy. The journey opens your soul as a vulnerable wound and caresses it unapologetically. That is the exact feeling you will get from Swedish singer and songwriter Elin Wolf‘s new radio-ready sounding release “Nighttrain To Yosemite.” From the very first 60s, 70s inspired guitar tunes playing with the most fragile strings of your heart and from the very first lyrics “sitting on a night train, thinking of the past,” your soul will turn upside-down, your emotions will burst from the depths you forgot about.
Elin goes back to her past and exposes herself fully during her trip in “Nighttrain To Yosemite,” and you will involuntarily find yourself exposed in a metaphorical, symbolic train of your own. The artist wrote the song on a night train to Yosemite, where she was going to hike, and the past started hunting her. The feeling is so common anyone could relate, but the utmost talent and creativity are required to make such beautiful art out of it. Elin’s strong yet vulnerable vocals, her singing manner, the way she pours her heart out, and her professionalism to not lose control, all mixed together, make “Nighttrain To Yosemite” an unforgettable experience.
BVSMV, A Lush Form of Electronic Music That’s Dreamy, Retro and Well Polished
BVSMV – Escapism
Triplicate Records is on a roll recently – compilation albums Green Shift and Red Shift, along with releases from Beefus B, Suncastle and more have been consistently excellent. Released on September 4, “Escapism” by Milwaukee-based producer BVSMV, is yet another fine addition to the label’s catalogue.
Broadly best described as synthwave, BVSMV makes a lush form of electronic music that is dreamy, retro and well polished. From the wistful first bars of opening track “Daybreak”, through the neon-drenched nostalgia of “Quantum Variations”, to the shimmering synths of the closer, “System Testing”, this is an EP that is immediately listenable.
I must admit, that despite being a fan of most electronic music, the synthwave sound is one that I don’t generally pay much attention to. The pink, blue and black aesthetic and the repetition of sounds I first heard as the credits rolled in eighties action movies mostly leaves me cold. BVSMV moves beyond the formulas here though, adding more to the sound than I have heard before, and in so doing, manages to create something that is both familiar and new.
For these reasons, I suggest seeking this album out. Available now on Triplicate Records, “Escapism” is well worth your time.