“Sunlight” by RHODES

"Sunlight" by RHODES

Artist: RHODES

Song: Sunlight

Genres: #indiepop

Location:  Baldock, United Kingdom

Release date: August, 2023

Comment: David Rhodes, known by his stage name RHODES (stylized in all caps), is an English singer and songwriter born in 1988 who embarked on his musical journey in 2013. He had a successful duet with Birdy and was featured on Kygo‘s debut album, “Cloud Nine“, but I don’t think he is that well-known yet. Chances are, this is the first time you’ve heard about him.

RHODES has been on my radar for a while, and he recently released a single called “Sunlight” that quickly became my favorite song of his. It’s one of those rare tracks where you might find the verses more captivating than the chorus. From the moment the first note hits, you’re drawn into a world of ethereal melodies and heartfelt lyrics that make you stop and listen. RHODES’ vocal performance is nothing short of mesmerizing. His voice, rich and emotive, carries the song, and the lyrics are relatable yet profound.

In short, I think this song shines as bright as its title suggests. Check it out!

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“DRIVE!” by Lockyer Boys

"DRIVE!" by Lockyer Boys

Artist: Lockyer Boys

Song: DRIVE!

Genres: #altpop

Location:  Thunder Bay, Canada

Release date: November, 2023

Comment: The Lockyer Boys, a project by brothers Will and Charlie Lockyer, have released their new single, “DRIVE!”, which is now available on all streaming platforms. The song is a vibrant, fast-paced production that brilliantly highlights the duo’s invigorating and uplifting pop style. DRIVE!” revolves around seizing opportunities, conveying themes of confidence, courage, and giving one’s utmost effort.

Hailing from Thunder Bay, Canada, the Lockyer Brothers have been immersed in musical collaboration since their early years. At the youthful ages of 19 (Charlie) and 21 (Will), this multi-talented duo has accumulated substantial studio experience, and that’s evident with “DRIVE!” production-wise. Their future is bright!

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“Future Dead” by Desert Life

“Future Dead” by Desert Life

Artist: Desert Life

Song: Future Dead

Genres: #indiefolk

Influences: R.E.M., Bon Iver, Ryan Adams

Location: Tenby, United Kingdom

Release date: October, 2023

Comment: Desert Life, a musical duo hailing from Tenby, Wales, has recently captured my attention with their debut album titled “Let It All Pass,” released last month. The album opens with “Future Dead,” a track that sets the tone for the entire album beautifully. It commences with acoustic folk instrumentals that set a tranquil tempo, soon followed by the melodic vocals.

The songwriting partnership, composed of the singer-songwriter Chris Swales and the multi-instrumentalist Tom Jordan, has expertly fashioned a sound that reverberates with their influences, particularly R.E.M (in my humble opinion). This is particularly palpable in “Future Dead,” where the emotionally charged musical arrangements and poetic lyricism delve into the shadowy recesses of the heart.

If you’re a fan of R.E.M. or similar bands, I wholeheartedly recommend giving “Future Dead” by Desert Life a listen. And if it resonates with you, I encourage you to explore the rest of their debut album as well; you’ll discover plenty more of what you love within.

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“How to exit a room” by The Maine

"How to Exit a Room" by The Maine

Artist: The Maine

Song: How to exit a room

Genres:  #indierock #alternativerock

Location: Arizona, United States

Release date: July, 2023

CommentThe Maine, whose song “Face Towards The Sun” was featured here in July 2021, released “How to exit a room” in July this year, and it is a shining example of the band’s consistent ability to deliver fresh and engaging music. Featured on their self-titled album, this track has garnered praise from both fans and critics alike. It kicks off with an attention-grabbing rhythm and boasts introspective and relatable lyrics, tackling the universal experience of desiring an escape from a situation or place.

Musically, “How to Exit a Room” is a finely-crafted pop-rock gem that doesn’t overstay its welcome, offering a delightful listening experience with its melodic chorus and well-balanced instrumentation. The production is polished, ensuring that each element of the track shines without overshadowing the others.

Whether you’ve been a longtime fan of the band or are just discovering their music, this track is unquestionably worth a listen.

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“No Reptiles” by Everything Everything

"No Reptiles" by Everything Everything

Artist: Everything Everything

Song: No Reptiles

Genres: #indierock

Location: Manchester, United Kingdom

Release date: October, 2015

Comment: I was aware of the existence of Everything Everything, but I hadn’t really cared about them until a friend of mine made me listen to “No Reptiles” a few weeks ago. When the song started playing, I have to say that I wasn’t enjoying it very much, but by the time it finished, I knew right then that it was a stroke of genius and one of those tracks that grows on you with each listen. Considering I’ve been overplaying this track since then, I suppose I wasn’t wrong.

In a musical landscape often dominated by formulaic melodies and predictable lyrics, “No Reptiles” emerges as a refreshing revelation. The song is a brilliant confluence of art-rock, pop, and unbridled emotion. With an arresting, pulsating beat that serves as the foundation, the song immediately commands attention. The bassline then adds depth and groove, ensuring that this song isn’t just an auditory experience but a visceral one too. Jonathan Higgs’ vocal range and intensity are staggering, and the lyrics, although cryptic, are highly evocative. Supposedly, Higgs wrote this song after a few of his friends became conspiracy theorists, and the title refers to the Reptilian theory.

That being said, what truly elevates “No Reptiles” is its ability to create an atmosphere that’s both hypnotic and liberating. As the song progresses, it swells, cascading into an intricate sonic tapestry that refuses to be confined by any genre or structure. The seamless interplay between the band members showcases not only their musical chemistry but also their innate understanding of their craft. This is why I had to feature it here as a #ThrowbackThursday post. What a masterpiece!

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“Last Days” by Grecco Buratto

"Last Days" by Grecco Buratto

Artist: Grecco Buratto

Song: Last Days

Genres: #Instrumental, #relaxingmusic

Location: Los Angeles, United States

Release date: October, 2023

Comment: In the ever-changing landscape of music, it’s refreshing to stumble upon an artist who dares to tread a different path. Enter Grecco Buratto, a Latin Grammy-nominated producer and seasoned guitarist, who has graced the stage with iconic artists such as Lionel Richie, k.d.lang, and Gwen Stefani. “Last Days,” is the first track from his second album, “Sem Palavras” (Wordless), released this month. This record also finds its place within a larger project, complementing Buratto’s first collection of poems, “Só Palavras” (Words Only).

“Last Days” is a minimalist masterpiece, drawing its emotional power solely from the gentle strumming of an acoustic guitar. It embarks on a contemplative voyage, offering an intimate exploration of yearning, reflection, melancholy, and serenity. The song feels like a lullaby that lets you disconnect from a world that sometimes feels overwhelming. So, sit back, relax, and enjoy the music!

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“Wishing Well” by Sundara Karma

"Wishing Well" by Sundara Karma

Artist: Sundara Karma

Song: Wishing Well

Genres: #indierock #altrock

Location: Reading, United Kingdom

Release date: September, 2023

Comment: For those who are not familiar, Sundara Karma is an English indie rock band that originated in Reading, England back in 2011. The group comprises Oscar Pollock as the lead vocalist, guitarist, and songwriter, along with Ally Baty as the lead guitarist, Dom Cordell on bass, and Haydn Evans handling the drums. Their band name, derived from Sanskrit, translates to “Beautiful Karma.” In the years since their formation, they have been consistently active and have treated listeners to a series of albums, each offering a refreshing perspective on indie rock. Sundara Karma‘s distinctive musical identity is characterized by the fusion of emotionally charged lyricism with captivating rhythmic melodies, resulting in compositions that are not only enthralling but also profoundly relatable.

Sundara Karma‘s most recent offering, “Wishing Well,” is a good example of that. It presents an uplifting composition juxtaposed with verses that articulate the torment of dwelling on “what ifs.” It’s a track that leaves you contemplative, humming along, and eagerly hitting the replay button. Enjoy.

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“hot girls in hell” by LØLØ

"hot girls in hell" by LØLØ
Photo credit: Luke Rogers

Artist: LØLØ

Song: King of Wands

Genres: #altpop #poppunk

Location: Los Angeles, United States

Release date: July, 2023

Comment: LØLØ, also known as Lauren Mandel, is a talented Canadian singer-songwriter, born in 1996, celebrated for her captivating blend of pop and alternative pop music. Her rise to fame was facilitated by her performances on TikTok, where she breathed new life into iconic music hits. Her musical style is a blend of pop melodies, sharp rock undertones, and angsty vocals that brings forth the bitter sting of heartbreak. Is it unique? No, but it is damn good.

A prime example of her prowess is her latest release, “hot girls in hell,” a fiery track that skillfully balances both fierceness and vulnerability. The track kicks off gently, gradually morphing into a pop-punk anthem that will have you headbanging in no time. This structural evolution mirrors the rollercoaster of emotions one experiences when a relationship comes to an end. In summary, check this song out if you are into indie pop. It is truly enjoyable.

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“All I Die For” by SWiiMS

"All I Die For" by SWiiMS

Artist: SWiiMS

Song: All I Die For

Genres: #indiepop #shoegaze

Location: Toronto, Canada

Release date: October, 2023

Comment: SWiiMS, an indie rock group hailing from Toronto, Canada, has unveiled their latest single, “All I Die For.” This dynamic trio, composed of Mai Diaz Langou on vocals and guitar, Colin Thompson on guitar and vocals, and Cian O’Ruanaidh on bass and vocals, has been crafting their musical synergy since the summer preceding the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Their sound is an interesting blend of 80’s New Wave, 90’s Shoegaze, Indie Rock, Brit Pop, and Dream Pop. The result is vividly apparent in “All I Die For,” a composition radiating an infectious, upbeat energy. This single is a precursor to their forthcoming LP, “Into the Blue Night,” a project conceived and recorded amid the backdrop of the Covid-19 pandemic in 2020 and 2021.

“All I Die For” revolves around the nascent stages of a romantic relationship – the way we embellish ourselves to captivate the interest of the other person. It encapsulates the emotional rollercoaster of new love, brimming with hope, euphoria, and a relinquishment of control. Production-wise, it’s evident that each element in this song has been meticulously crafted, from the captivating vocals to the finely-wrought clean guitar melodies.

In essence, “All I Die For” stands as a testament to SWiiMS‘ remarkable prowess in crafting auditory delights. With the resurgence of bands like Slowdive, SWiiMS might just be poised to ascend to the ranks of IT indie bands. They certainly deserve it.

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“One More Time” by blink-182

"One More Time" by blink-182

Artist: blink-182

Song: One More Time

Genres: #alternativerock #punkrock

Location: California, United States

Release date: September, 2023

Comment: I’ve managed to secure tickets to see blink-182 live in London next week, and needless to say, my excitement is off the charts. It’s this exhilaration that led me to feature their latest track, “One More Time,” today. It’s safe to say that I haven’t been this thrilled about a new blink-182 song since the release of “I Miss You.” This new track, in my opinion, stands shoulder to shoulder with the classics, especially when you consider the nostalgic elements present in the music video, the lyrics, and the reunion of Tom DeLonge with the band (also, Travis vocals!). I want to acknowledge that Matt Skiba did a commendable job as a replacement, but what truly made blink-182 special was the dynamic trio of Tom, Mark, and Travis.

By the way, they released another new track last night called “Dance With Me,” and it sounds fantastic. I can’t wait for the new album to be released.

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