Category: piano

Emma Louise “Talk Baby,” “Underflow,” “West Side Kids”

I’ve been following the exceptionally talented Emma Louise for four years. I saw her captivate an audience at the crumbiest venue at SxSW 2013 and was convinced then and there that she’d make a massive splash. The three lead tracks off her upcoming release Supercry are further evidence of that. She has grown into her voice. It’s a powerhouse yet still laser-fine enough to cut glass. These three tracks bring the velvet hammer down in entirely new ways. “Underflow” breaks your heart in all the right places at just the right times – it physically pulls you in. Everything her voice does, you feel. “Talk Baby” is a sultry, hypnotic, bad girl anthem that is as delicate as it is fiery and sexy. “West Side Kids” reminisces in a bittersweet stroll through relationship nostalgia.
Something else to note: her videos for both “Talk Baby” and “Underflow” are next level. Dylan Duclos, the man behind the videos, should be lauded for his flawless visual accompaniment for such heavy, beautiful music. Claps all around. Emma Louise’s July 15th release cannot come soon enough!

BEST OF 2015!

Happy Holidays everyone!
I’ve never made my year end lists public, but this year I’ve decided to shake things up. I present to you my personal best of 2015, both songs and albums. The songs can be streamed here if you would like to listen (honorable mentions included at the end):

Albums (in no particular order):
Wolf Alice – My Cool Is Cool
Sufjan Stevens – Carrie and Lowell
Alabama Shakes – Sound and Color
Chris Stapleton – Traveller
CHVRCHES – Every Open Eye
Rayland Baxter – Imaginary Man
The Bohicas – The Making Of
Beirut – No No No
Jason Isbell – Something More than Free
Blitzen Trapper – All Across This Land
Everything Everything – Get To Heaven
The Tallest Man On Earth – Dark Bird Is Home
Coldplay – A Head Full Of Dreams
Ryan Adams – 1989, cover album (Taylor Swift)

Songs (also in no particular order):
“Uptown Funk” (ft Bruno Mars) – Mark Ronson
“Talking Body” – Tove Lo
“Here” – Alessia Cara
“Genghis Khan” – Miike Snow
“Mountain At My Gates” – Foals
“Lydia” – Highly Suspect
“Coltrane” – Amasa Hines
“Your Loves Whore” – Wolf Alice
“Where You At” – The Bohicas
“Getting Ready to Get Down” – Josh Ritter
“Nobody To Blame” – Chris Stapleton
“Heartbreaker” – Daniel Wilson
“OctaHate” – Ryn Weaver
“Electric Love” – BØRNS
“Leave A Trace” – CHURCHES
“Dreams” – Beck
“Stressed Out” – Twenty One Pilots
“Trip Switch” – Nothing But Thieves
“Snakeskin” – Deerhunter
“Adventure of a Lifetime” – Coldplay
“Ship To Wreck” – Florence + The Machine
“Sedona” – Houndmouth
“Pretty Pimpin'” – Kurt Vile
“Spring (Among the Living)” – My Morning Jacket
“Snake Eyes” – Mumford & Sons
“Dunes” – Alabama Shakes
“Brazil” – Declan McKenna
“Gibraltar” – Beirut
“Forget You In LA” – Poema
“Yellow Eyes” – Rayland Baxter
“Empty Handed” – Christof
“Color Decay” – Júníus Meyvant
“Death with Dignity” – Sufjan Stevens
“How Could You Babe” – Tobias Jesso Jr.
“Dark Bird Is Home” – The Tallest Man on Earth
“Between Me And You” – Brandon Flowers
“Hello” – Adele
“Everglow” – Coldplay
“Flagship” – Jason Isbell

Honorable Mentions:
“Outcast” – Mainland
“Mystery” – Boxed In
“Roman Holiday” – Halsey
“Forest Fires” – Axel Flovent
“No Room In Frame” – Death Cab For Cutie
“Borderline” – Tove Stryke
“Hold Me Down” – Mansionair
“Moona Festival” – Polyenso
“Love Grow Cold” – Blitzen Trapper
“Where The Night Goes” – Josh Ritter
“Spring / Sun / Winter / Dread” – Everything Everything
“The Way It’s Always Been” – Brandon Flowers

Polyenso “Moona Festival”

Wow, this song is movingly beautiful. From the absolutely stunning, patient piano intro to the striking yet delicate Thom Yorke-esque vocals woven throughout, I can’t decide what I love the most. This trio from St. Petersburg, FL released their full length debut in 2013. “Moona Festival” is their latest single, which hopefully precedes yet another LP filled with similarly delicious songs.

Arkells “Leather Jacket”

Loving these pop-rockers from Canada! If you are looking for a fun, upbeat album to get you through the final stretch of summer, look no further. The Arkells’ latest release High Noon is a melodic, piano-driven ball of energy with lots of lovely little nods to a mélange of artists (depending on the song) ranging from Frank Turner, U2, Third Eye Blind, and even to Asbury Park-era Springsteen. There’s something for everyone here. As an unabashed lover of undeniable hooks and well-calculated buildups, I give you my favorite track, “Leather Jacket.” This will be on repeat for the rest of the summer.
Also, gotta love the hilarious pay phone comment at around 3:44 …

Tenterhook “Chemicals”

Archie Faulks, 19 year-old British frontman to the new band Tenterhook, will be making some waves this year with his upcoming self-titled EP release this September. If this demo is any indication as to what the finished project will sound like, the Tom Odell’s and Ed Sheeran’s out there are in for some major competition. I can see this song topping charts in the not-so-distant future, so keep your eyes out for this one!

Tom Odell “Can’t Pretend”

In light of my current British excursions, I feel it necessary to shed light on this very talented young lad, Tom Odell. His brooding ballad “Can’t Pretend” caught me off guard right before leaving for the UK. Not surprisingly, his hometown has heartily embraced him. Most everyone I have asked here knows about Tom, either from this powerful, haunting song spreading like wildfire or perhaps from his giant advertisements in the tube. Nonetheless, it is sure to move you as it has me. Perfect – especially in this gloomy London weather…

Y LUV “Driftin”

Repeat alert! Can’t get enough of this pop-tastic, piano driven tune. It has such a nice, diverse palette of sounds. From the classical piano intro to the kinda psychedelic, funky guitar bit in the middle of the song – it all works. “Driftin” is the perfect amount of pop to please the Top 40-ers, yet with enough ingenuity to pique the eclectic listeners’ critical ears as well. Excited to hear more from Y LUV; if the rest of their music sounds like “Driftin,” I’m thinking Maroon 5 should start sweating!