#BILLCSTop30 #557 – March 18/19

The lack of blog posts hardly means I’ve stopped listening to new tunes, and in particular the 30 songs in my chart 🙂  The blog posts will come, but in the meantime it’s a mainly feel-good kind of chart with two new entries.

For a third appearance at #1 (6 weeks), it’s “Closure” by Dutch producer Steve Void with vocalist Andy Marsh and its outstanding and memorable video. 

Challenging next week will be current #2 “i’m so tired…” by Lauv and Troye Sivan, which is finding its greatest favour in the UK where it’s headed for the Top 10 this week.  

And #3 is also in contention is “Don’t Think Twice” by Netherlands-based Emirati production duo Revelries and US producer Sam Smyers with US-based Dutch vocalist Oktavian.  Revelries has yet another release later this week with Henri Purnell and Cookin On 3 Burners called “Force Of Nature”, so watch for it!

Sweeping into the Top 5 as the Fastest Riser on the chart twice in a row is the celebrated collaboration of Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, Armin van Buuren and W&W with the insanely catchy “Repeat After Me”.  What a crowd pleaser 🙂

Stephen Puth joins brother Charlie in obtaining a Top 5 hit on my chart with “Sexual Vibe” climbing 7-5.  I’m predicting big things for Stephen too!

Australia’s Sam Bluer moves up 9-7 with “Bite My Tongue”.  I really think a collaboration with Troye Sivan is in order, don’t you?

The other newcomer to the Top 10 is by Nashville’s Mokita.  “London” (above) is a gorgeous miss-you song with one of the warmest lyrical hooks I’ve hard in ages.  Mokita has a new one that I’ll preview here until its proper blog post.  It’s called “Kiss And Tell” (below).

“Love” by Simon Curtis advances 17-12 and is eyeing the Top 10 – no strange place for this week’s birthday boy Simon, it’s just missed him for the last three years since the reboots of “8bit Heart” (#1) and “Super Psycho Love” (#3) 😀

Also moving upward is Parralox’s latest “Paradise”, a redux of a single from a few years back with a new vocal by Marcella Detroit and a heavenly house remix by Eric Kupper.  It climbs 16-13.  Parralox was last in the Top 10 in 2015 with #4 “Aeronaut”.

The biggest mover of the last chart’s new entries belongs to the deep house of Mahalo’s “Go Ahead”, featuring an infectious chorus and a potent vocal by MŌZ.  It rises 26-20. Go ahead, take that risk!!

New entry #1 is a bit of a surprise – “Sucker” by The Jonas Brothers at #25.  The Jonasei, as I like to call them 😛 , previously charted in 2008 with “S.O.S.” (#15), but Joe has charted solo and with DNCE, and Nick’s “Chains” also made its presence known in the interim.  But “Sucker” is simply a very good pop song, with all the right chops, and is highly deserving of its success.

New entry #2 at #29 is the out-and-out inspiring disco of “Let’s Go Dancing” by UK producers Horse Meat Disco featuring the enthusiastic vocal of US singer Amy Douglas.  This one’s nothing fancy and with one aim – to make you dance your ass off.  It shall succeed 🙂

The chart will return in two weeks after my visit to Miami Music Week!!

View the full BILLCS Top 30 right here!  Click on the hyperlink on the song titles to hear the songs or watch the videos!

Listen to the BILLCS Top 30 Songs on Spotify! Click on this link to take you there, and follow me on Spotify: BILLCS Top 30 Songs

Check out and ‘like’ the BILLCS Music Projects Facebook page 🙂

 

 

 

 

“Gone My Way” by @MorganPage and @PexLmusic brings a decade of dance full circle

MORGAN PAGE and PEX L, “Gone My Way”

Progressive house producer Morgan Page continues to be on fire with his latest release “Gone My Way”, this time paired with Spain’s Pex L, for Armada, which comes out racing on the heels of his remix of worldwide pop hit “Sweet But Psycho” by Ava Max.  “Gone My Way” happily brings a decade of different dance music styles together in one song, from the infectious basslines of progressive house from earlier on, to more sophisticated, futuristic bounce of 2019 and beyond.  A well-chosen but uncredited female vocal also figures prominently in the vibe of “Gone My Way”.  This one has the potential to be one of Morgan’s bigger records, and you can catch the producer in action at Miami Music Week in the Armada Invites Miami showcase on Saturday March 30.

Published in: on March 13, 2019 at 10:49 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“I Saw The Devil” is soulful alt.pop from Toronto by Carlaw with vocalists @JamesCollins1 and Stephanie Bleakley

CARLAW and JAMES COLLINS & STEPHANIE BLEAKLEY, “I Saw The Devil”

“I Saw The Devil” is a nifty slice of soulful alt.pop that showcases a number of Toronto performers.  I’ve written about singer/songwriter/actor James Collins a number of times, and his vocal here is smooth and restrained, in contrast to Stephanie Bleakley’s dynamic wallop which recalls other Canadian women like Dalbello or Simone Denny. 

And what of lead artist Carlaw?  Well I may be wrong, but I think it’s likely a pseudonym or new name for those talented guys The Boomtang Boys, who’ve had many Canadian hits of their own from the 90’s through to the 2000’s such as “Squeeze Toy”.  They co-wrote “I Saw The Devil” with James, and someone else also gets a songwriting credit – now’s the time for the interesting back story!  That someone is Canadian actor Jason Priestley, currently in “Private Eyes” but most noted of course for “Beverly Hills 90210”. 

As James tells me, “”I saw the devil… I embraced him, but I pushed him away” was a direct quote Jason had commented to his wife and sister when he came out of a coma, after his tragic car racing accident.  Jason also gave me his blessing in having a song written around that quote… a quote written in his memoir.”

So let that quote be your guide, along with the multitude of talent behind “I Saw The Devil”.

Toronto’s @GoldComplexband returns with the R&B/jazz/pop fusion of their album New Soul featuring “Meant To Dance”

GOLD COMPLEX, “Meant To Dance”

It’s been a while since we heard from Toronto’s Gold Complex, an eight member R&B/jazz/pop collective that released its first EP a few years back.  Since that time, I’ve also written about their lead singer Will Bowes and his solo work.  Gold Complex’s album New Soul – which includes “Backbone” from their EP – is everything that you could like about a fast-paced, effortless record that straddles many genres.  Will can be a powerhouse singer given the song, and we’ve heard his softer but potent solo songs too.  And the band is incredibly tight – these musicians have each other’s backs, hard enough to do with eight personnel.  But if there’s a song to focus on here, to me it’s the lively, diverse “Meant To Dance”, one of the more pop-oriented songs on the album but it’s incredibly radio friendly.  It’s got a delicious pause around the minute mark which can make or break a song, but it shifts wisely into high gear right after, and then unleashes Will’s fierce voice.  The rest is a delightful mix that has a lot of 70’s flavour.  And a dance remix could open up “Meant To Dance” to clubs too.

I was fortunate to see Gold Complex in concert for one of their sets in Toronto’s Nathan Phillips Square on Saturday, March 9.  They are better live than on record, and this is where Will’s wide vocal range has the opportunity to flourish.  I hope to see them again, perhaps in a more intimate setting, either indoor or outdoor, for full effect!

Published in: on March 13, 2019 at 10:49 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Record Roundup: @dawncalltwitt @subsetsmusic @ayellemusic @snowmassmusic @monamoua @odesza @chetporter @keyrouzmusic @henripurnell @beticalmusic @sikdope

While I haven’t been writing as of late for one reason or another, including being away for a week, you can bet that I have kept listening to submissions I’ve received and other songs that have caught my attention.  Some songs will get their own blog posts but here are six that are definitely worth your attention 🙂 :

Ahhh those vocals, that atmosphere!

DAWNCALL & SUBSETS and AYELLE, “Ghost”

“Ghost” covers a lot of bases, pairing relative newcomers Israel’s Dawncall with the UK’s Subsets to create an attentive, eerie, seductive song that showcases UK singer Ayelle’s crisp and captivating vocal, recalling her recent work with Taska Black.  It’s definitely one for club DJ’s to offer up after a big, loud set heading into the wee hours.

SNOWMASS and MONA MOUA, “Wait For Me”

Everyone’s favourite Chicago snowman/producer returns with a similarly progressive track to his previous release “Crossfire”, also featuring the unique voice of Mona Moua.  It’s a taut and always interesting production that goes really big and then equally quiet at times, always keeping your ears peeled for something unexpected.

All about the remix

ODESZA and WYNNE & MANSIONAIR, “Line Of Sight” (Chet Porter remix)

Hey if my fellow Torontonian Chet Porter is going to resurface with something new – even if it’s not his own song – then why not make it with a glowing official remix of “Line Of Sight” from Odesza’s Grammy-nominated A Moment Apart.  As always, for this fan favourite, Chet zeroes in on the melody and transforms its hook from anthemic trap to electronic synth bliss that soars for miles…

HENRI PURNELL and PARULA, “Mama Say” (Anthony Keyrouz remix)

Lebanese producer Anthony Keyrouz adds some magic to “Mama Say”, a fine pop song in its own right by German producer Henri Purnell featuring vocalist Parula.  He pitches down the vocal a bit and adds a percolating rhythm and Latin-sounding guitar work to conjure up images of the sunny Mediterranean countryside, taking the song in a slightly different but most welcome European folk-infused direction.

Who needs words anyway?

BETICAL, “Strangers”

French producers Betical bring a lot of intrigue to the fore with “Strangers”.  With a heavy, dark atmosphere laid out with future bass rhythms, “Strangers” is perfect for late night spins with lots of flashing lights which will augment the echoing vocals that are appropriately layered deeper into the mix.

SIKDOPE, “Rave”

From the Moe Shalazi stables comes Polish producer Sikdope with “Rave”.  It’s a bouncing, fun, progressive tip of the hat to all fans of raves and their music.  Play this one for a huge crowd and it’s guaranteed to make everyone respond, so it has future festival fave written all over it.  

#BILLCSTop30 #556 March 4/19

The new chart is ready to roar with all of the songs charging up the chart, especially those breaking through and into a very busy Top 10.  And just to add fuel to it all, four more songs debut to challenge in the coming weeks.  Over 2,200 songs have appeared in the BILLCS Top 30 since its inception in 1998!!

But it’s “Closure” by Steve Void and Andy Marsh that secures #1 for a second appearance.  It’s a hard song to get out of your head, matched by a memorable, heartfelt video.  “Closure” is release #100 for Steve’s Strange Fruits label and he reported that it’s already received over 4 million plays.  Well-deserved – a very special song indeed.

Racing up 6-2 is the incredibly likable “i’m so tired…” (above) by new best buds Lauv and Troye Sivan.  We’ll have to see in two weeks if “Closure” stays put again, but for now you can check out the MNEK remix for “i’m so tired…” below!

Moving up impressively to #3 is “Don’t Think Twice” by Revelries and Sam Smyers featuring singer Oktavian.  It’s also a strong contender for the top so we’ll have to see if there’s room for it eventually.  “Twice” is Revelries second Top 10 here following last year’s “Infinitum” and it’s also Oktavian’s too – he was featured on The Him’s #2 “Balance” from 2016.

I love finding singers with fantastic voices and great potential.  Such is the case for NYC-based singer/songwriter Ryan Gibeau with “Flying Away” from his fine indie album Quiet Fall.  It climbs 9-6.

“Sexual Vibe” (above) by Stephen Puth is such an ear-charmer, and it rises 12-7.  Puth the Younger already has a new song and video out called “Half Gone” – check it out below.

The Him’s “Look At Us Now” (above) moves up 10-8.  The prolific duo – recently added to the Miami Music Week Spinnin’ Hotel gig roster – offers up another new tune “Tell Your Friends”, featuring Loote, below.

Young Australian Sam Bluer gets his first Top 10 entry with “Bite My Tongue”, a great companion to Troye Sivan’s “My My My!”, and moves up 11-9.

San Holo fan favourite “lift me from the ground”, featuring Sofie Winterson, breaks out of the middle of the chart and climbs 15-10.

The fastest riser on the chart is a must for upcoming festivals and when you have star power such as Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, Armin van Buuren, and W&W creating the song, then how can it be anything but?  “Repeat After Me” charges up the chart 19-13.

“Love” is Simon Curtis’ gorgeous first song to appear on the chart since reduxes of earlier songs “8bit Heart” and “Super Psycho Love” rebooted in 2016. The more sophisticated “Love” is off to a good start, up 22-17.

Right behind is “London” by Nashville’s Mokita, who is also up at #15 with R3HAB for “All Into Nothing”.  This heart-fluttering love song climbs 24-18.

And the fun “Take It Off” by L.A. duo Two Friends rises 27-21 as the guys wind down their “With My Homies” tour.

Leading the debuts is French production team KRONO with the soulful “Perfect Strangers” for Tipsy Records at #25 featuring a winning vocal by PIOTR.

L.A.-based producer Mahalo has his second concurrent chart entry with the catchy future bass of “Go Ahead” featuring vocalist MŌZ.  It arrives at #26, as Mahalo’s other charted release “In My Arms” slips from 2-4.

I love me some danceable alt.pop/rock and Italy’s Mark Mendy delivers it with “Black Gasoline” at #26.  It features Australia’s Beamish Brothers on vocals; they charted late last year with Revelries on the previously mentioned “Infinitum” (#10).

The fourth debut at #27 is “Chemistry or Chemicals” by Matt Beilis, a busy singer/songwriter from NYC who occasionally appears on dance music releases.  This is his first solo appearance; he previously charted with Electric Bodega with “Rest Of My Life” (#4) in 2016.

View the full BILLCS Top 30 right here!  Click on the hyperlink on the song titles to hear the songs or watch the videos!

Listen to the BILLCS Top 30 Songs on Spotify! Click on this link to take you there, and follow me on Spotify: BILLCS Top 30 Songs

Check out and ‘like’ the BILLCS Music Projects Facebook page 🙂

 

“Black Gasoline” is driving alt.pop/rock from Italian producer @MarkMendy with Australia’s #TheBeamishBrothers

MARK MENDY and THE BEAMISH BROTHERS, “Black Gasoline”

“Black Gasoline” has a driving, infectious groove that can’t miss.  It’s an unexpected slice of alt.pop/rock marking the return of Italian producer Mark Mendy that also launches a musical direction change for Australia’s The Beamish Brothers (Ben and Jeremy), who have been go-to voices on many a dance record these past few years.  “Black Gasoline” has crisp rock edges that carry a flow that doesn’t let up.  The Beamishes’ voices fit like tight gloves in this setting, sometimes exuding pop vibes you’d find in songs by Shawn Mendes and Years & Years.  So slice and dice it into whatever category or genre you want.  However you like it “Black Gasoline” aims to please and hits the wide-appeal mark with ease.

Published in: on February 22, 2019 at 11:08 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“Mind Games” by @ElleHollisof is thought-provoking, glimmering electropop

ELLE HOLLIS, “Mind Games”

With a crystalline voice and a thought-provoking song that immediately draws you in, “Mind Games” by Elle Hollis is a wonderfully crafted slice of electronic pop.  It’s easy to relate to and should have no problem finding its way to fans of that style, which will help bring the talents of this young Dutch singer/songwriter  to a greater audience.  “Mind Games” gives me the indication that Elle could easily tread on someone like Zara Larsson’s territory without issue.  Elle’s voice is a natural, and I think offering up an acoustic version of “Mind Games” to show it off might be a wise next step.

Published in: on February 22, 2019 at 11:08 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Is it summer yet? So the effervescent “Don’t Let Me Go” by @konimusic, Tom Bailey and Ane might have us believe

KONI, TOM BAILEY and ANE, “Don’t Let Me Go”

It’s been a while since we heard from German producer Koni – one half of Saxity – so here he’s back with his first 2019 release, “Don’t Let Me Go” with British producer/singer Tom Bailey (not he of The Thompson Twins) and vocalist Ane.  Ever-reliable, Koni and friends have concocted a pristine production which will instantly transport you somewhere warm and relaxing for some romance.  “Don’t Let Me Go” is unassuming but immensely appealing and effervescent deep house, a song that definitely deserves a wider audience.  Bring on the summer – “Don’t Let Me Go” definitely has me as an early believer!

Published in: on February 22, 2019 at 11:08 pm  Leave a Comment  
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#BILLCSTop30 #555 – February 18, 2019

There has to be luck in triple numbers, right?  So edition 555 is upon us with the chart in its 21st year online.  5 new songs invade the chart, and the Top 10 is all shaken up to the point of crowning a new #1 song.

A beautiful video for the new #1 song was released last week and it belongs to “Closure” by Dutch producer Steve Void with singer Andy Marsh.  Although Steve has been to the Top 10 3 times before, it’s his first #1.  The video is all about four young people who all don’t seem to fit in, but find happiness being together.  It doesn’t really have much to do with the theme of the song, but it doesn’t have to.  Well done!

Mahalo and Le:Blanc move up to #2 with a 2:25 dazzler called “In My Arms” (above).  LA-based Mahalo also has a new single that’s totally different in the deep house vein from “In My Arms” called “Go Ahead” featuring MŌZ, below.

“Play” by Jonas Blue and Years & Years (above) advanced 6 to 3.  Among a number of songs to drop on Valentine’s Day was Years & Years’ “Valentino” featuring UK vocalist MNEK (below).

“Don’t Think Twice” is the latest from Netherlands-based Emirati duo Revelries with fellow producer Sam Smyers and vocalist Oktavian.  It climbs 10-4 with eyes on #1 but some competition all around so we’ll see what ultimately gets there when it’s time!

Another song to watch closely on the chart is “I’m So Tired…” by Lauv and Troye Sivan which is the fastest riser soaring 22-6.  The pairing between the two singers was so unexpected but so spot on!

Also new to the Top 10 this week are NYC-based singer/songwriter Ryan Gibeau with “Flying Away” (12-9, above) and its retro pop ballad appeal, and The Him’s propulsive “Look At Us Now” (below), bound to be a festival fave soon, as it climbs 13-10.  It’s the Dutch duo’s 6th time in the Top 10.

Also keep your eyes on “Lift Me From The Ground” by San Holo featuring Sofie Winterson from San’s album1, which moves up 23-15.  The bigger the speakers, the better the song sounds!

Another song to be played loud at festivals is in the mandatory participation needed in “Repeat After Me” by Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, Armin van Buuren and W&W.  It jumps up the chart quickly 25-19.

UK producer Maff Boothroyd has some slick classic house for clubs with “Take Me Away” (above) moving up 27-21.  Also new from Maff is “Miss You”, below.

“Love” by Simon Curtis is the L.A.-based singer/songwriter’s first new music in 6 years.  It’s Simon’s 16th chart entry, including 3 songs on which he was featured, since “Delusional” arrived on the chart just over 10 years ago.  Check out the lyric video for “Love”, above.

Next up at #24 is the second chart entry for Nashville singer Mokita with “London”.  He’s already up at #17 with R3HAB on “All Into Nothing”.  Like that song “London” is also a ballad, but more in the indie singer/songwriter style, and it has lyrics that will just make you melt.

At #25 is the 11th chart appearance for Sam Smith since 2014 with “Dancing With A Stranger” featuring US singer Normani.  It’s a great song that mashes up perfectly with Majid Jordan & Drake’s “Hold On, I’m Coming Home”!  It’s Sam’s first entry since songs from his fine second album The Thrill Of It All.

Dutch producer John Christian has a #26 debut with “Let’s Get This Thing Started”, a fun mix of deep house and booming big room sounds.  It also uses the music from the 70’s hit “Popcorn” by Hot Butter as a hook.  Listen for it!

The fifth debut belongs to L.A. producers Two Friends with the fun tease of “Take It Off” at #27.  It follows last year’s “Just A Kid” which peaked at #13 and itself followed numerous remixes which also charted.  About “Take It Off”, the guys say “this song is about being with someone who’s super guarded & all you wanna do is scream TRUST ME! but they still have trouble letting you in.”

View the full BILLCS Top 30 right here!  Click on the hyperlink on the song titles to hear the songs or watch the videos!

Listen to the BILLCS Top 30 Songs on Spotify! Click on this link to take you there, and follow me on Spotify: BILLCS Top 30 Songs

Check out and ‘like’ the BILLCS Music Projects Facebook page 🙂