Author Archives: Katie Moore

UK Artist of the Week: Catgod

Oxford band Catgod have previously charmed crowds at Truck Festival and Sofar Sounds, and received acclaim from BBC 6 Music’s Lauren Laverne and Tom Robinson, Clash, and The Line Of Best Fit. Lead by sibling duo Robin Christensen-Marriott and Catherine Marriott, they’re now ready to release their debut EP “Heartbeat In My Hand.”

Taken from the EP, lead single ‘Keep My Promises’ is a beautiful fusion of sounds interwoven to create something truly majestic. As Robin’s John Martyn-reminiscent languid vocals glide throughout, the track oozes a twinkling musicality as luscious harmonies float across an epic, cinematic soundscape.

Throughout the EP, Catgod fuse together an eclectic range of influences—from folk to trip hop—as each track flows with a sweeping, spellbinding grandeur. From the delicate, emotion-strewn splendour of title-track “Heartbeat In My Hand” and the effervescent grace of “Let Go,” to the more abstract musicality and shimmering harmonies of closer “Owing You,” the EP showcases the band’s ability to create inspired, genre-defying offerings. It’s an innovative debut collection that captivates on first listen.

“Heartbeat In My Hand,” the debut EP from Catgod, is in stores 22nd June.

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UK Artist of the Week: Nausica

Since forming back in 2013, German/Dutch group Nausica have been writing and producing all of their own material, honing their unique, spellbinding sound.

Symbolically describing two different mindsets in the form of an ongoing flashback, new single “Black & White” combines innovative layers of sound with the soaring, majestic vocals of Edita Karkoschka. Flowing with a swirling musicality, sparkling hooks, and throbbing, glitchy beats, a captivating soundscape is created, making it impossible not to be swept away by the track’s sweeping, effervescent splendour.

Of the track, the band expand: “…conscious choices are made with clear memories, in contradiction to the typical grey area, where everything you feel and do seems blurry. The chorus could be perceived as the deep, powerful, and colourful output of emotions, almost losing the feeling for reality.”

“Black & White” is out now via Knight Rider Records, and we cannot wait to hear more from this intriguing band.

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UK Artist of the Week and Video Premiere: Tuesday Syndicate

Following their last single “Hourglass,” Devon band Tuesday Syndicate have returned with a brand new video for latest offering, “173.”

An instantly infectious uptempo slice of vibrant indie-pop, “173” races with catchy hooks and impassioned, pop-inspired vocals. With a chorus that’ll stick in your ears on first listen, the track offers an immense outpouring of emotion alongside a hurtling upbeat energy; the perfect combination for that reviving summer anthem you’ve been waiting for.

Having formed five years ago, Tuesday Syndicate have wowed crowds at Isle Of Wight Festival and Shepherd’s Bush Empire, and are now set to continue charming fans with this rousing new single.

Watch the new video for “173” above.

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UK Artist of the Week: Raleigh

Initially formed when Clea Anaïs was drawn to Brock Geiger’s voice at a festival in Calgary, Canadian band Raleigh have wowed crowds at Islington’s Union Chapel and have supported indie greats Unknown Mortal Orchestra. Now, set to return to the UK for The Great Escape Festival later this month, they’ve shared an utterly infectious new single.

Taken from their latest album Powerhouse Bloom and featuring Broken Social Scene’s Brendan Canning on guitar, “Smoke In Our Eyes” is a truly dreamy slice of atmospheric alt-rock that demands multiple listens. As catchy, twinkling hooks are interwoven with luscious harmonies, oozing a captivating, otherworldly splendour.

Treating listeners to a sweeping, psychedelic haze with shades of Bombay Bicycle Club, Raleigh have created something quite wonderful. It’s impossible not to fall in love with “Smoke In Our Eyes” rich, majestic layers of sound.

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UK Artist of the Week: Leisure Tank

If catchy, nostalgic alt-rock is what you’re after, then look no further: power duo Leisure Tank have just what you need. Since forming in 2014, their debut album Wetsuit has received widespread acclaim and they’ve charmed crowds at of Camp Bestival, Mellow Festival, and London’s Borderline.

Now, back with new single “Higher.” they’re set to continue their success. Inspired by “the twisted feeling one gets when someone tells a one-sided, self-pitying break up story,” it’s filled with catchy hooks and front woman K C McKanzie’s impassioned, soaring vocals, with shades of nineties legends Elastica.

Propelled by drummer Budi’s racing beats and an infectious groove, it’s a track that’ll pack a punch on first listen, leaving you hungry for more of Leisure Tank’s dynamic alt-rock offerings.

Be prepared to hit repeat and be taken higher by the seductive sounds of Leisure Tank; aka your new favourite band. And be sure to feast your eyes on their sparkling new video.

“Higher” is in stores now via Goddamn Records.

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Needle Drop: The Magic Lantern, “Lydia”

Having previously received acclaim from The Guardian, BBC 6 Music’s Lauren Laverne, BBC Radio 2’s Jamie Cullum and Bob Harris, and BBC Radio 3, Jamie Doe—aka The Magic Lantern—has returned with a spellbinding new single.

The second single taken from his upcoming album To The Islands, “Lydia” is a truly stirring creation. Written during a tumultuous return to his childhood home of Australia, it flows with intricate finger-picking and Doe’s beautiful sweeping vocals, oozing a delicate emotive power.

Filled with a folk-inspired musicality and intimate grace, it’s an exquisite offering showcasing The Magic Lantern’s talent for writing truly heartfelt, musically rich songs.

“Lydia” is in stores now via Hectic Eclectic Records.

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UK Artist of the Week: BARQ

Following 2016’s “Gentle Kind Of Lies” and last year’s “Optimus Prime,” Dublin band BARQ, who have previously received acclaim from The Irish Times and Hot Press, and are continuing to build a name for themselves with the release of attention-grabbing double A-side “Sassy Mouth” / “Earthquakes.”

Whilst each track is distinctive in its sound and subject matter, what remains consistent is the immense, overwhelming power of front woman Jess Kav’s vocals. Whereas “Earthquakes” is a thoughtful reflection on an explosive breakdown of a friendship and the sense of acceptance and renewal that follows, “Sassy Mouth” is a politically-influenced anthem, inspired by the courage and resilience of Ireland’s “Repeal The 8th” movement.

Flowing with funk-fused beats and booming bass lines, “Earthquakes” showcases BARQ’s self proclaimed “Agrosoul.” Oozing the soulful allure of Kav’s vocals alongside an infectious groove akin to Hiatus Kiayote or Erykah Badu, it’s a silky-smooth treat for the ears.

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UK Artist of the Week: Rebecca Lou

Having only begun writing songs in 2015, Danish artist Rebecca Lou has already been garnering a reputation for her energy-fuelled live shows across her homeland and has supported rising rockers Velvet Volume on tour. Now, she’s beginning to make her mark in the UK with her two latest singles “Bitch U Look Good” and “Under The Moon.”

A tribute to self-love and celebrating your own worth, “Bitch U Look Good” is a riotous offering, fuelled by a thrashing energy and force. With shades of Joan Jett or Riot Grrrl pioneers Bikini Kill, it’s an instantly infectious and undeniably raucous slice of stimulating rock ‘n’ roll.

“Under The Moon,” on the other hand, veers into a more indie-pop sound. Inspired by poems she wrote when she was just 16 years old, it showcases the sweeping power of Rebecca’s vocals beautifully, as whirring hooks flow with an emotion-strewn splendour and twinkling musicality.

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UK Artist of the Week: Monks In The Wood

Since forming back in 2015, South London band Monks In The Wood have received acclaim from the likes of BBC Introducing and When The Horn Blows, and have now released a stirring new single.

“No Love” offers an emotion-strewn grandeur as impassioned vocals are perfectly interwoven with soaring guitar hooks and sweeping layers of instrumentation.

Reflecting on the contrasting feelings that can emerge within relationships, it’s a cinematic slice of indie-pop showcasing not only the admirable musicianship, but the thought-provoking lyrical storytelling of this upcoming band. With shades of Broken Bells, it’ll tug at the heartstrings whilst uplifting one’s spirits with its unique and infectious groove.

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UK Artist of the Week: Skylar Fri

Yet again, Scandinavians have treated us to another ethereal gem. This time, it’s from Danish chill-pop princess Skylar Fri.

Skylar Fri’s latest single “Gold Rush” builds slowly, yet there is no denying the celestial beauty of the track from the offset and throughout. Fri’s soft, tranquil vocal soars over stunning synths and moving melodies to create something perfect for late night drives or long train journeys. Fans of FKA Twigs and Sky Ferreira will feel at home here.

Having already received critical acclaim for her previous single “Better” last year, 2018 is looking to be a pretty great year for Skylar Fri already. Here’s hoping a tour is on the cards soon!

“Gold Rush” is in stores now via AntiFragile Music.

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UK Artist of the Week: ARXX

Having supported the likes of PINS and Nova Twins on tour, Brighton duo ARXX are fast making a name for themselves as one of the most exciting live bands around. Now, having just released their debut EP, they’re blasting into our ears with their riotous new single.

Reflecting on the failed expectations of a relationship, “Tired Of You” races with gritty riffs and immense pounding beats as the seething power of Hannah Pidduck’s vocals soars with a raw passion. Combining catchy refrains with a fist-clenching force, it’s an instantly infectious slice of garage-rock with shades of The Coathangers or Deap Vally.

Influenced by the music that Pidduck was brought up with by her mother, “Daughters Of Daughters,” the new EP from ARXX, showcases an eclectic range of sounds with subject matter ranging from cats, misogyny, and addiction. From the intense, subversive power of “Intervention” to the country-pop romanticism of “Stuck On You,” it’s an impressive collection of tracks, making it impossible to pigeon-hole the duo by one single genre.

“Daughters Of Daughters,” the debut EP from ARXX, is in stores now.

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UK Artist of the Week: Hoshino

Having received praise from BBC Introducing and BBC Radio 1, Essex band Hoshino, who formed back in 2015, have now graced our ears with a brand new slice of luscious electro-pop.

Defined by the distinctive, rich vocals of Elloise Rosemond, “Stars (In The Night Sky)” flows with a soulful groove alongside whirring beats and delicate, sparkling refrains. Made up of many eclectic layers of sound and oozing alluring, dreamy vibes, it’s a truly innovative sonic delight.

For fans of the impassioned RnB by the likes of Erykah Badu, with this latest offering Hoshino have proved themselves capable of creating their own utterly unique, and hugely catchy, resplendent fusion of sounds.

With support for Fickle Friends, and a slot at Secret Garden Party festival already under their belts, Hoshino are set to charm listeners with their elegant, effervescent creations.

“Stars (In The Night Sky),” the new single from Hoshino, is currently in stores.

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UK Artist of the Week: Bad Mannequins

Channelling the late ‘70s CBGB’s era of New York City’s punk rock scene, Glaswegian duo Bad Mannequins continue to win the hearts (and ears) of a new generation through the release of their single “Double Denim,” and we are delighted to name them this week’s UK Artist of The Week.

Having released their debut EP, and first of a three-part trilogy “Deny ’Til U Die Part 1” in the summer of 2017, Bad Mannequins have continued to impress listeners with their high-octane brand of garage rock. Despite the simplicity and raw energy of the drum/guitar set-up, Bad Mannequins have managed to create a sound that packs a punch for just over three blistering minutes.

With tongue in cheek, lyrics such as “You wouldn’t even be here if your momma didn’t rock that double denim!” combined with hook-laden, fuzz-filled riffs, Bad Mannequins’ sound is uniquely infectious. Garnering support from the likes of BBC Radio, as well as being featured on hit US TV show Limitless, Bad Mannequins appear to be gearing up for huge year.

“Double Denim” is in stores now via Triple Denim.

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UK Artist of the Week: Hannah Epperson

Following 2016’s Upsweep, Canadian artist Hannah Epperson has now released the album’s eagerly awaited second half, Slowdown.

Armed with just her violin and a loop pedal, Epperson has created an innovative collection, with two distinct versions of each track, the “Amelia” and the “Iris.” Derived from the idea of two opposing worlds coming together to form a fictional character of a narcissistic and alienated young man, the versions of each song stand in stark contrast with each other.

Combining folk-inspired, sweeping strings alongside pulsating beats and Epperson’s twinkling crystal-clear vocals, the “Amelia” version of album opener “20-20” is a haunting slice of electro, folk-tinged pop. The “Iris,” however, is more stripped back, a gentler offering, relying simply on the power of Epperson’s impressive vocal range and delicate instrumentation for effect.

The album continues in this vein, the two opposing versions of each track contrasting and clashing, in the most effective way. As the throbbing beats and eerie, ethereal layers of sound of the Amelias are juxtaposed with the stripped-back melancholy and delicate emotion of the Iris, Epperson has created a surreal and cinematic soundscape.

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Needle Drop: HAWK, “Below” b/w “Can’t Explain”

Fast becoming known for their beguiling, ethereal creations, Berlin-based HAWK  follow the success of singles “Once Told,” “Take It Away,” “Mirror Maze,” and most recently “Sin,” with the release of a brand new AA side.

Steeped in the band’s trademark spellbinding grace, “Below” takes its inspiration from Irish history—the Catholic church and its mistreatment of women—a subject of which front-woman Julie Hawk feels passionately. Flowing with delicate, twinkling melodies and sweeping celestial vocals, gritty undertones start to surface as the track progresses, building to a sudden raging blast of fury. Of the track, Julie explains:

“… as an Irish woman, both looking back at how women were treated in the past and the desperate lack of progress today, I feel betrayed by my country. We’re still fighting for basic reproductive rights for women and seeing an embarrassing response from our government.”

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