September Pop Grab Bag: Colin Munroe, Sky Ferreira, Vague-à-bonde, Sam Sparro, River Tiber, Vista Cruiser, Elle Vee, and Jane Badler

Colin Munroe “Over It”

Colin’s new Unsung Hero mixtape finally dropped today, but preceding it last week was “Over It”, which isn’t as heavy as “Fight Of My Life” and “Invincible”. Even in more of an accessible pop vein like this, the Toronto performer’s sympathetic vocals and resolute lyrics are extremely powerful. Expect more of the same grittiness in the mixtape, but I’ll save my comments about Unsung Hero for later in the week.  In the meantime start yourself with “Over It” by downloading it right here.

Sky Ferreira featuring Blood Orange “Everything Is Embarrassing”

At last, it’s a Sky Ferreira song that captures the sexiness and vulnerability I saw on stage in New York City in April 2011. It’s a pretty sparse and fragile sound from her upcoming EP Ghost that could easily put the much-praised Sky in the same leagues as Ellie Goulding in no time. More like this please… and remixes could send clubs positively spinning.

Vague-à-bonde “Evolved”

Hailing from Minneapolis, Nicole Brenny has recorded her second album under the name Vague-à-bonde, and in advance of it comes “Evolved”. Not far removed from Sky Ferreira or Ellie Goulding but with the tough edges we find with Pink and Rihanna, “Evolved” starts out gently unassuming and then seemingly out of nowhere comes this amazingly hooky chorus that will simply slay you. After all what would a vague-à-bonde be if not restless? I can’t wait to hear a live performance of “Evolved”. Get the free download right here and look for more soon from Vague-à-bonde.

Sam Sparro “We Could Fly”

Backtracking to the soul/funk and emotional pop combo of Sam Sparro’s sophomore album Return To Paradise, I would like to humbly suggest “We Could Fly” as the next single. After the video of the the downbeat but cathartic “I Wish I Never Miss You”, “Fly” could serve as a reprise of the vibe of the first single “Happiness” and with some innovative remixes will help this intriguing album gain momentum again.

River Tiber “What Are You Afraid Of”

As regular readers know, I consider Toronto band River Tiber to be one of The Finds of 2012. I adore the many moods of the debut album From Now On, particularly “Someday” and “Symmetry”, which reached #1 and #2 on my personal chart. Led by singer and multi-instrumentalist Tommy Paxton-Beesley, River Tiber segues into more experimental electronic pop/rock on “Afraid”, full of gorgeous smatterings of electric guitar, which all resonate through the images in the video. Watch below, and look for many more fine things to come from Tommy and River Tiber this Fall.

Vista Cruiser featuring Vanessa Barfod “I Dig, You Dig”

A humorous party rock song will always get my attention if the whole package rises among the generally inane setting. Such is the case with Montreal’s Vista Cruiser, comprising Mich and Andy Manaras, who were more known for rocking out a decade ago than the fun electropop behind “I Dig, You Dig” would let on. But with platinum award-winning producer John Nathaniel somewhat uncharacteristically at the helm, and a clever, eye-popping video, you will have a tough time getting the song out of your head. So party on…

Elle Vee featuring Tek-neek “I Like Girls”

Hailing from L.A., Elle Vee is Lindsay Vinarsky, a diverse songwriter whose “I Like Girls” puts her definitively in Britney Spears sounding territory but with lyrical bite that takes no prisoners along along with a well-placed rap. Give a listen below and check out numerous other songs, which show some other sides of Elle Vee on her Soundcloud page.

A reminder, in anticipation of its video launch on Saturday, September 8, do check out Jane Badler‘s wonderful “Yesterday’s Tomorrows” below in all of its original glorious drama and then in the so chi chi Stormby’s Drama Mix. I’ll have the video coverage on the weekend. There are all kinds of details on Jane’s Facebook page .

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  1. […]  I wrote about “Evolved” by Minnesota singer Vague-à-bonde (aka Nicole Brenny) a little while back.  The combination of soft, genuine vocals and one of the best chorus hooks you’ll hear this […]


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