With a new full length album on the way, now is the perfect time to find out what all the fuss is about with Magazine Gap. Their first album, ‘Light and Shade’, did an excellent job of showing how this trio put together a number of different genres to make their own style. And, before the new album is complete, the band have decided to release a four song funk EP in the shape of ‘Calling Card’.
Released on November 25th, the tracks have been released one by one on YouTube in the performance style of the one above, for title song ‘Calling Card’. If you like what you’re hearing, and what’s not to like, you should check out the band’s website for more information.
Opening with a lone, funk piano sound, the new track from Dale McKay sets out its stall early. Before long, that piano is joined by McKay’s fine vocal, before finally being underpinned by the arrival of the rhythm section as the verse builds to a brilliantly euphoric chorus.
It’s an assured, well constructed introduction to a song which in turn represents the thoughtful nature of McKay’s songwriting. This is clearly an artist who has something to offer, which makes the prospect of a new EP an exciting one.
Totalling four tracks (including ‘Make You Happy’ of course), that EP is titled ‘Here and Now’ and is out on September 16th. That’s not far off now, and anticipation is understandably high.
There are many who believe it’s very simple to put together a dance track which could legitimately stand up alongside the heavyweights of the genre. Some say it’s simply a case of putting a thumping beat to a set of chords, melodies and looping vocals. There are many poor examples of this online, and those lazy knockoffs should take a listen to Voodoo Dancer’s new single for inspiration.
A ‘Raw Beautiful Club Mix’ of their soul laced pop track ‘Forever Girl’, the single is available on iTunes and shows there’s more to good dance music than a pumping beat. Here, the smooth soul of the original is blended seamlessly with the tightly structured dance tropes to excellent effect. Enjoy.
Rachel Johnson is a young woman from Edinburgh who clearly thrives on the creative. She is both a singer-songwriter and a painter, creating pictures both visually and musically which mark her out as a real talent. She’s the kind of songwriter which gives you the feeling that the music isn’t written for commercial gain, more simply because Johnson needs the avenue to put herself out there.
Sometimes, this approach leads to an inordinate amount of noodling and hand-wringing, which is all very well for the artist, but fails to land with an audience. However, ‘Safe Island’ proves that Rachel Johnson is able to find an audience who can identify with her. The song is out now on iTunes, and has already got loads of local support in her home city. We would recommend supporting her further afield by getting your own copy of this single – there will be more on the way soon too no doubt.
Having found huge, worldwide acclaim as part of dance music powerhouse Faithless, multi-talented performer Maxi Jazz is back with a new band and a new sound.
The band, The E-Type Boys, explore a different side to Maxi’s musical personality. Inspired by the funk, soul, reggae and jazz genres, this is a darker sound in many ways, utterly compelling throughout. Knowing Maxi Jazz’s background in full on dance only makes it all the more intriguing.
There’s more new music coming in the New Year, but in the meantime Maxi Jazz and the E Type Boys have offered up a little taste of what’s to come with the track above, ‘Bitter Love’.
A career musician who has transitioned from girl pop group Exposé into a funky soul diva as a solo artist, Kelly Moneymaker’s excellent new album ‘Stone’ is out now.
Influenced by great artists such as Aretha Franklin, Bonnie Rait and Tina Turner, Moneymaker has delivered an LP with impact, style and a whole lot of guile. Chock full of fine funky licks and her trademark power vocal, this is a release far fans of proper, old school soul music.
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.