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Loud Hound - High in the Bathroom
Loud Hound - High in the Bathroom

Loud Hound - High in the Bathroom


Distant party sounds and the definitive click of a closing door open Loud Hound’s newest single, “High in the Bathroom.” Suddenly, you’re in a private room at a hazy house party, utterly immersed in low-fi rock sounds and Loud Hound’s reverb-heavy vocals. Jersey-based artist Tommy Florio sings, “All we have in common is getting high in the bathroom,” and you realize listening to this song feels like doing exactly that. The instruments are loud but muffled, and the psychedelic synth that joins the chorus sounds like something skirting the edge of sobriety — a slightly trippier Alvvays. There’s a sadness to the song that is uniquely carefree, like knowing there’s nothing to do for your wounded heart but to let go of your inhibitions completely. The production compliments that mood nicely, arranging the music in a way that feels like a loosening of one’s grip on reality, while still maintaining clarity and tightness overall. “High in the Bathroom” is Loud Hound’s fourth single, and it effectively showcases Florio's talents as a singer-songwriter and producer. We can’t wait to see what he’ll release next.

Britnee Meiser on March 15, 2019
Taken By Trees - Careless Whisper

Taken By Trees - Careless Whisper


Not many can get away with not only gracefully covering a George Michael classic, but also managing to give it a distinctly refreshing take. Taken By Trees does just that in their recently released cover of “Careless Whisper.” Swedish singer-songwriter Victoria Bergsman is like your magical tour guide through a lush, brightly-hued rainforest. Her unmistakable voice guides you through this entrancingly sultry, Caribbean-inspired rendition that’ll make you sway in ways the song has never made you sway before. A reggaeton-like beat pulses underneath fluid, hypnotic synths that spill over Bergsman’s clear and silvery vocals — creating a practically spiritual experience. Produced by Dan Lissvikk of Swedish dance-rockers Studio and Aaron Drake and featuring Mr Little Jeans on backing vocals, this cover is nothing short of impressive.

Andrea de Varona on March 14, 2019
Pip Millett - Try a Little Tenderness

Pip Millett - Try a Little Tenderness


British R&B singer Pip Millett pays homage to Otis Redding with her newest single, “Try a Little Tenderness.” The cover retains the soul and spunk of the original while bringing in modern sonic elements that nestle it firmly in the 21st century. Millett swaps Redding’s horns and piano for a heavy bass line and a soft, clapping hi-hat that groove behind her vocals. Smooth and sure, Millet’s voice is the standout element of this song. It’s got a soul-appropriate swing that feels effortless as it carries you from one verse to the next, and her crooning, lo-fi cadence, which feels a little bit indie, hooks you onto her every word. The lyrics stay true to the original, though the fact that they’re being sung by a young woman — the subject of the song — turns the meaning on its head in a great way. “Try a Little Tenderness” is beautiful and deceptive in its simplicity, and it’s only the sixth song Millett has ever released. We can’t wait to see what’s next from her.

Britnee Meiser on March 13, 2019
Albert Hammond, Jr. - Fast Times

Albert Hammond, Jr. - Fast Times


Is that a wise suburban boy or the Strokes guitarist Albert Hammond, Jr. singing? Well, both are kind of accurate. In “Fast Times,” off his fifth solo album, Hammond sounds a bit like Julian Casablancas if he got punched in the stomach. The result gives Hammond the whiny teen voice he needs to properly reflect on growing up in America in the early 90s. He sings, “School’s out now/ Found a ride / Saw some friends / We got high.” In today’s world, there would be something about a vape and sliding into your crush's DMs, but luckily, for 3 minutes and 24 seconds, Hammond’s engaging chord progressions transport us to simpler times.

Bee Davies on March 13, 2019
Sam Evian - Cherry Tree

Sam Evian - Cherry Tree


"Cherry Tree" is the first song that Sam Owens ever released under the name Sam Evian. It's fitting as such since the song seems to be just the right mix of his soft rock sensibilities — no clichés and just the right amount of guitar riff mixed with a steady piano tone. "Cherry Tree" was written by Sam under an actual cherry tree in Central Park, which only adds to the authenticity of the vibe. The track is also very lyrically compelling. Like poetry strikes the mind and the heart, Sam's words hit you in all the right places, “Cherry tree hungover me / Waving with empathy" and "Tell me life’s a passing cloud.” The guitar that comes in around the first minute is absolutely addictive. It's just like having a daydream under a tree in a park, refreshing and full of creative life. Even in the slowness, the song is just that, creative and refreshing.

Monica Hand on March 13, 2019
Christinna O - Lay It Down

Christinna O - Lay It Down


If smooth had a sound it just might be Philly-based R&B vocalist and spoken word poet, Christinna O.  At just 19-years-old, Christinna O brings out the sleekness of her sultry funk influences on her latest single, “Lay It Down.” The track comes as a glimpse into her upcoming EP, Girl In Passing, and sets the groundwork for a matured yet vibrant sound. Her style brings to mind soul queens like Toni Braxton and Brandy with its driving beat, thoughtful melodies, and a hook that just won't quit. “I trust you,” Christinna O sings as she takes you by the hand and into a moment of intimacy. She says, in regards to the subject matter, “It’s a choice and a permission, to let someone else know that they are welcome and they are the one I’m ready to lay down my burdens with. To feel valid in my vulnerability but ultimately, love.”

Deanna DiLandro on March 12, 2019
Clay - Sponge

Clay - Sponge


Though based in LA, singer-songwriter, Clay stays true to her hippie roots in her latest single "Sponge." The SF born artist and activist proclaims, "I'm a sponge soaking up all of you / Soaking up black and blue," and begs for someone to "Wring me out." With an acoustic guitar quietly underlying the singer's bluesy vocals, one begins to weep with Clay as she pleads for someone to save her this time. The lyrics are a testament to the harshness of today's reality that has become a struggle for those who remain deeply empathetic.

Bee Davies on March 12, 2019
Wild Rivers - Moving Target

Wild Rivers - Moving Target


"Are you too far departed?” is the central question in Wild Rivers’ newest single, “Moving Target.” The song is about losing touch with someone you love and the desperate longing that drives you to reach for that person regardless of how far away they might be. "Moving Target" is a heartbreak-filled ballad that moves you along with the melodic passion the Toronto-based band is known for. Khalid Yassein and Devan Glover's haunting lyrics and powerful vocals drive the band's first single after their stellar 2018 EP release, Eighty-Eight. The band is touring Canada next month and has a few US shows planned later in the year.

Giulia Santana on March 12, 2019
Alice Phoebe Lou - Galaxies

Alice Phoebe Lou - Galaxies


South African singer-songwriter, Alice Phoebe Lou meanders through space in her newest single, “Galaxies.” The song is not loud or over the top, but it feels expansive. Lou’s voice layers well atop atmospheric synthesizers and minimalistic guitar, but she pierces through occasionally with short high pitched yelps. It is a mix of her usual folk rock with a more electronic sound leaning towards something I could envision Bjork releasing. The languid, spacey and atmospheric sensation mimics the subject matter. The image of the galaxy in the song evokes a feeling of smallness and insignificance in the grand scheme of things as she sings, “we’ll go down the longest stream / reflected in a sunbeam / just a speck of dust in the milky way.” About two thirds through the five-minute track, it escalates. The synths build, guitar speeds up, and the percussion fills out. Lou’s voice accentuates this change as she slides into her yips at the end of almost every line — giving it a primal and exciting quality before she settles back into the droning for the last part. The song is the second single off her newest album, “Paper Castles,” which came out on March 8th. Lou is currently on the North America leg of her tour and will be performing during SXSW before heading to Europe in April.

Corinne Bates on March 11, 2019
Helado Negro - Running

Helado Negro - Running


Brooklyn baby Roberto Carlos Lange AKA Helado Negro gets real about his mental health in "Running." The song sounds quite romantic with crooning vocals and a mix of piano, drums and guitar that lull the listener into a trance-like state. On the surface, we almost don't realize that what "got me running" is anxiety, until Lange explains "Because I feel you / In my mind," and "Because I see you/In my hands." As a result, the listener feels an intimate connection with the singer, making this one of the most authentic songs of 2019.

Bee Davies on March 11, 2019
Ashe - Moral of the Story

Ashe - Moral of the Story


California pop artist, Ashe dropped her poignant ballad, “Moral of the Story” on Valentine’s Day. Ouch. This one is heart-wrenching as can be, detailing the failure of a serious relationship that had promise until it didn’t. Ashe ultimately blames the beginning and the end of the relationship on the couple’s youth. Starry-eyed and hopeful, they decide to take on the world together. Then, things “turn volatile” and it all falls apart. Ashe finds her pop niche with this dramatic sound, as the strings, choir-like back-up arrangements, and heavy beat conspire to form a full and emotional track. Even though she appears pretty skeptical on this track, Ashe maintains a relatable and even humorous edge. She sings, “They say it’s better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all / But that could be a load of shit.” The song aims to teach those who haven’t gone through a life-altering break-up how hellish and sad it can feel. “Moral of the Story” exposes the necessary reality of moving on.

Jacqueline Zeisloft on March 8, 2019

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