Francis Groove – ‘Alright (Take My Hand)’

It’s a hard thing to produce a song for the dance genre that could genuinely find a place on DJ and radio playlists. Belgian producer Francis Groove has made it look easy with new remix single ‘Alright (Take My Hand)’.

A four on the floor kick drum, a smooth vocal (courtesy of Tony G), and solid beat and a looping acoustic guitar line to add a deeper layer. Sounds easy right? Trust me, it’s not, which is why this track should be heard by as many people as possible. Download it now at iTunes so you can play it to all your friends.

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C’nky Siwela releases new dance music single – ‘My Name In The Echo’

The likelihood is that, if you’re reading this and don’t live in South Africa, you’re yet to be familiar with the work of pop artist C’nky Siwela.

In his home country (the aforementioned South Africa), Siwela is an independent musician of note and has won awards to prove it. This week he released his second single, which is available digitally worldwide. The track, above, is titled ‘My Name In The Echo’ and is all about remaining positive and working to achieve goals even when others tell you they’re unattainable.

It’s the kind of simple songwriting and message that’s easy to relate to, and the fact that it’s been added to this dance-pop production which would easily slip onto pop radio playlists also works in its favour. Too often meaningful music is tied up in the negative, focussing or hardships or heartbreak.

This track however is positive and relentless, and a great listen as you head off into the weekend.

You can get ‘My Name In The Echo’ in iTunes now.

Metaquorum – single ‘North Sea Fret’

Veteran musicians with a sense of mischief, duo Dmitry Ermakov and Koos Van Der Velde are a truly unique musical proposition. Offering their very own fusion of (often instrumental) funk, jazz, rock, and electronica, the pair have finally colluded to release a stunning combination of debut single ‘North Sea Fret’ and album ‘Midnight Sun’.

The single, which you can hear above, is a very strong indication of what you can expect from the album, which you can find on Bandcamp – http://metaquorum.bandcamp.com/album/midnight-sun

Classy, different, well-produced and meticulous, it shows fine musicianship and well structured arrangement of genuine talent. Fingers crossed for more singles to come.

Songs for Mr Sloane album – ‘It Is What It Is’

http://songsformrsloane.bandcamp.com/album/it-is-what-it-is

Whether you enjoy pure pop music, a touch of funk, a smidge of jazz, or simply well written songs about the state of the world today, the new album from Songs For Mr Sloane may well be your next purchase.

According to the press notes, the album seems to be the work of a ragtag bunch of excellent musicians and songwriters who spend time in the studio every now and again to see what comes of it. And, if it’s generally of the qulaity shown on album ‘It Is What it Is’ then this appears to be a great way to make music.

Keeping you guessing throughout, the album continuously rolls thoughts, techniques, styles and ideas from left field. Constantly surprising, and as a result exciting throughout, the album is a testament to independent music and the freedom it provides. Get involved.

Korveil official music video for ‘Feeling Alive’

Korveil is a singer, songwriter, and record producer from Chicago, Illinois. He is well known for his behind the scenes work as a recording studio engineer, background/hook vocalist, and his sought after photography skills. He has also managed and guided the careers of many local dance music artist.

Korveil’s music is a blend of old school Chicago House with today’s current EDM sounds. He elaborates, “as a singer I want my records to be vocal driven and not overshadowed by the beat”. In fact, he used the abbreviation for “vocals” which is “vox” into naming his imprint VOXO Music Group.

Korveil’s multifaceted behind the scenes work stretches from Ramsey Lewis, Lupe Fiasco, Bruno Mars, B.O.B, Iyaz, David Rush, The Cataracs, Havana Brown, Mia Martina, Cobra Starship, to many more. His music has been televised on America’s Best Dance Crews, So You Think You Can Dance, and 90210.

In 2014, Korveil decided to take his talents to the west coast. Feeling like he had a new start, that is where he was inspired to create the record “Feeling Alive”, noting lyrics “I got a second chance at life”. Initially, the song was in negotiation to be recorded by a major pop artist, but days before finalizing the deal, he received bad news that two of his friends had been killed in Chicago. Korveil says, “immediately I heard the words to the song speaking to me, and I felt I had to sing this one”.

The “Feeling Alive” music video is an anti-depressant. It is a fun collection of footage showcasing dancers, musicians, and random people from the streets of Los Angeles, and Chicago. The EDM energy of the track puts you in a good mood, the video makes you smile, and by the end of the song you will be singing along.

Due to the momentum from “Feeling Alive”, Korveil decided to remain in the forefront, with plans to release a string of dance records in 2015. “Everything” releasing in February, “Who You Are” in April, and an EP in the summer. He say’s, “all of these records have fun energy and inspirational lyrics”. He’s also in the studio writing and producing songs for other artists.

Tru Thoughts Compilation – Shapes:Rectangles‏

‘Shapes: Rectangles’ is the latest in Tru Thoughts’ series of essential label compilations, has just been featured as Lauren Laverne’s (BBC 6Music) Compilation of the Week. It was compiled by A&R and label co-owner Robert Luis, showing the nous that saw him booked to headline the DIY strand of The Great Escape 2014 conference. This great collection of music will be out on double CD, double LP (with full 30 track download code inside) and digital, on 30th June.

2014 sees Tru Thoughts celebrating its 15th Birthday, and this compilation illuminates a hothouse of musical talent, bringing a wealth of newer signings in amongst the more established artists on the label.

New single from NuBorg – ‘Inanna’ is out now on iTunes

With another month passing and the 15th of the month coming around, we’re happy to inform you that we have once again received a new single from the excellent Norwegian artist ‘Nuborg’. Releasing her album one track at a time on the 15th of each month, with the full album due in August once all tracks are available, it has been a truly intriguing project of very high quality. ‘Sliding Off the Edge of the World’ was the first of NuBorg’s singles we featured – a dark, moody, ambient pop masterpiece – followed swiftly by last month’s excellent acoustic pop track ‘You You’.

And as great as last month’s single was, we’re pleased to hear that new song ‘Inanna’ is a return to the style of the former. Compelling, dark and creating a real atmosphere, the song builds slowly. Adding continuous layers to its dark chrd pattern, ‘Inanna’ is nicely structured so that its huge crescendo – arguably NuBorg’s most complex so far – creeps up on you and is therefore hugely effective. Then, as the sound eases of towards the end, the impact is allowed to sink in.

The single ‘Inanna’ is out now – and we’re already looking forward to next month!

Vena Portae – Summer Kills (Peter Morén Remix)

Vena Portae are an Anglo-Swedish alt-folk band, comprised of BAFTA award-winning singer songwriter Emily Barker, songwriter and performer Dom Coyote, and Swedish producer and multi-instrumentalist Ruben Engzell.

Vena Portae’s eponymous debut album draws the listener into an epic journey of love, loss, memory and longing. From the heady alt-pop highs of ‘Flames & Fury’ and ‘Summer Kills’, to the dark, atmospheric depths of ‘Turning Key’ and ‘Transatlantic’, this is an album that is atmospheric, moving and irresistible.

The album is due for release on 18th August and features stunning lead single ‘Summer Kills’, which is remixed by Swedish indie legend Peter Morén (lead singer of Peter, Bjorn and John). As the band puts it ‘Summer Kills’ is “A song about longing, about a broken past and an uncertain future. A song about regret and vain hopes. A song about love.”

“Vena Portae” means “vein portal” in Latin; it’s a short vein that carries blood to the liver. The band were inspired by ideas of roads, rivers, veins, portals, creative openings, connections between people, places and life force.

In the winter of 2012, Vena Portae found themselves in the tiny, snowed-in Swedish town of Mölnbo just outside Stockholm. They built a make shift studio, full to the rafters with analogue equipment, spring reverbs, electric guitars, banjos, pianos and an array of weird and wonderful instruments. Over the space of a month, they recorded a treasure trove of songs, inspired by heartbreak, passion, and intrigue, which together make up the album Vena Portae.

AUGUST LIVE DATES:

15 – The Goods Shed, Stroud
17 – Beautiful Days festival, Devon
21 – Square Tower, Southsea
22 – Sound Knowledge, Marlborough
23 – Union Music Store, Lewes
23 – Music’s Not Dead, Bexhill
24 – Purbeck Folk Festival
25 – Swiss Cottage, Winchester
27– Green Note, London
30– Castle Hotel, Manchester

Glory Glory, ‘Indigo Son’

A mix of indie and new wave sensibilities, ‘Indigo Son’ is a smooth, warm track taken from Glory Glory’s latest EP ‘So Long’. Produced by Justin Gerrish (The Strokes, Vampire Weekend), the Canadian band have seen their stock rise with the reaction to their laid back sound.

Also, the band are playing the following UK dates –
May 2 – Liverpool – The Brink (Liverpool Sound City)
May 5 – London – The Dublin Castle
May 6 – London – Upstairs at The Garage
May 7 –  London – The Slaughtered Lamb
May 9 – Brighton – The Blind Tiger Club (The Great Escape)
May 10 – Brighton – Green Door Store (The Great Escape)

‘Losers Can Win’ – the debut Starwalker EP

StarwalkerFrench ambient icon Jean-Benoit Dunckel (Air, Tomorrow’s World) and Icelandic composer Bardi Johannsson (Bang Gang) have released their long-awaited debut EP as collaborative electro-pop duo Starwalker.

https://soundcloud.com/bjjb/sets/loserscanwin

Following their separate successes – including Air’s critically acclaimed 1998 debut ‘Moon Safari’ – together the pair make celestial music that is shadowy, poetic and vibrant.

While the EP’s title track features the calming timbre of Israeli singer-songwriter Keren Ann, filled with mellow guitar strums and deep electronic notes, second track ‘Bad Weather’ is more strongly reminiscent of Air’s characteristic chilled style – hushed, ethereal harmonies, spacey sounds and slightly melancholic melodies.

The EP also includes an intricate remix of ‘Bad Weather’ by award-winning Icelandic electro-pop quartet Bloodgroup, whose lo-fi interpretation beautifully complements the duo’s layered sound.