It’s “10/10” #19: @Gina_Naomi_Baez @MikeLindup #Fubu & @DannyDeardenuk @omgRainMan & @PeteChosen @RobertBallmusic @OsvaldoSupino @TommieSunshine & @theDiscoFries (remixed) @LindaVargmusic @djKarazey & @EstyRichard @iamWiese

It’s time for “10/10” edition #19!  July has been an incredibly busy month for releases and in order not to get overwhelmed or to miss any songs that I think you need to hear, I’ve compiled 10 reviews into one neat blog post package.

For those not familiar with10/10,  I write about 10 hot and fresh songs in no particular order, for your kind consideration and attention.  I continue to write individual blog posts about certain songs.  That does not mean that songs in the 10/10 lists are any less than those featured individually, and they are not listed in any particular order.  Writing 10/10 posts means I can cover more songs in one shot.  So you get to learn about more new music that I hear but don’t always get a chance to write about.

  • GINA NAOMI BAEZ, “My Time”

There’s a good chance that you’ve seen NYC’s Gina Naomi Baez on “Orange Is The New Black” or Netflix’s “She’s Gotta Have It”, on Off-Broadway, or caught one of her viral You Tube videos that have given her a substantial social media following. However, you may not know Gina the singer/songwriter, and “My Time” is about to change all of that. It’s an immediately inspiring song that challenges you to make the most of your time and strive to new heights for yourself and no one else. Being a cancer survivor as a child, having to challenge herself regularly must be second nature to Gina, and her glorious vocal, which at times recalls the power of Sia, is certainly a knock out. “My Time” is also co-written and produced with extreme precision by Matthew Tryba (Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande).

  • MIKE LINDUP, “Time To Let Go”

If you’re a fan of 80’s pop, R&B or jazz, then you already know keyboardist Mike Lindup as one of the principals and vocalists in the amazing British group Level 42 (“Something About You”, “Lessons In Love”).  If not, then his new solo effort “Time To Let You”, is as good a song to get to know him and his fluid style as a new Level 42 song – and he and Mark King still head up the band to date, which performs live now and again, mainly in England (I saw them perform live back in the 80’s too).  “Time To Let Go” harkens back to earlier fan-favourite Level 42 records such as their self-titled album or The Pursuit of Accidents with its rhythmic jazz-R&B fusion, and will also appeal to fans of jazz masters of that era such as Pat Metheny or Jean-Luc Ponty. Mike’s recognizable tones and falsetto sound marvelous here, and I hope there is more to come!

  • FUBU and DANNY DEARDEN, “Under My Skin”

UK singer/songwriter Danny Dearden returns to “10/10” territory this time in collaboration with Scottish producer Fubu for “Under My Skin”.  You know a solid partnership has occurred when the producer and singer can elevate a song to be more than the sum of its parts.  In other words, Fubu’s no-holds-barred rhythms and Danny’s totally infectious vocal make the most of a song that in other hands could have been… ordinary. Fubu cut his teeth revitalizing songs like Lumidee’s “Never Gonna Leave You”, Blu Cantrell’s “Breathe” and “Freak Like Me” by Adina Howard, so that pedigree speaks for itself. “Under My Skin” is a fine release by a team-up worth repeating.

  • RAIN MAN & PETE CHO and REBECCA BRUNNER, “Over It”

“Over It” has designs on transporting you out of pandemic fatigue to either get prepared for or back out into the night life, depending on where you are in the world.  Chicago’s Rain Man and Pete Cho along with vocalist/co-writer Rebecca Brunner will make sure that you get there with a brisk rhythm track and zesty synths gliding underneath Rebecca’s world-weary but encouraging vocal. It’s been a while since we’ve heard from either Rain Man or Pete Cho, so “Over It” marks a welcome return for both. Rain Man of course had a huge dance radio hit a few years back with “Bring Back The Summer” (which landed on my personal chart too) and, as its third original member, was also the anchor of Krewella’s initial success with their hit “Alive”. Pete has had sporadic but consistently solid releases over the past few years after being a successful restauranteur for many years. I think club DJ’s will love “Over It” as a part of club goers’ return to nighttime living.

  • ROBERT BALL, “I Need A Man”

Toronto-born singer/songwriter Robert Ball is not a new name to performing or to Canadian music, having performed in theatrical productions at Stratford, Ontario, on Royal Caribbean cruises, and opened for or recorded with fellow Canadians such as Shawn Desman, Keshia Chanté, Maestro, and Saukrates.  And as a gay man, Robert lays his soul bare with his new single “I Need A Man”. It’s as if someone had transported early 70’s cabaret through the soft and sultry voices of Teddy Pendergrass, Luther Vandross and Jeffrey Osborne into a passionate, expressive song whose vulnerability will reach beyond LGBTQ2S+ audiences, making Robert Ball a vocalist to watch for and remember.

  • OSVALDO SUPINO, “Lights Down Low”

It’s been a few minutes since I’ve written about the songs of Italian LGBTQ2S+ singer Osvaldo Supino, who had some memorable moments in the last decade with beauties such as “I Have A Name” and “Goodbye”.  While he’s continued to record since that time (sometimes in Italian too), “Lights Down Low” came to my attention recently.  The song’s production endows it with a much-needed mystique to support Osvaldo’s soft but enticing vocal.  The video above also shows what you can create with a variety of costume changes to enhance his performance. “Lights Down Low” is another solid addition to Osvaldo’s repertoire and I think dance mixes could help send it over the edge at clubs.

  • TOMMIE SUNSHINE and THE DISCO FRIES, “Don’t Look Back” (Gerd Janson vocal remix)

When you just see the artists’ names, you know that a track like “Don’t Look Back” simply can’t miss. But what you might not know is that this is a remix of a song that Tommie Sunshine and The Disco Fries originally released in 2011, reviving Avicii-era vibes in a progressive remix by veteran German producer Gerd Janson.  Gerd melds the vocal track creatively with layers of synths for intriguing and contemporary results, making this one an easy mixing choice for club DJ’s.  Tommie and the Disco Fries guys have both made signature leaps and bounds over the years and “Don’t Look Back” is a cool choice for a revival.

  • LINDA VARG, “Standing In The Middle Of The Road”

Currently taking a path that isn’t often pursued these days, Sweden’s Linda Varg has massive music industry pedigree which includes being a finalist in Swedish Idol in 2010 and having a major label deal with the group Supernatural. “Standing In The Middle Of The Road” is a straight-forward, even retro-sounding pop-rock track with synth elements that give it a rich scope, and it will appeal to fans of Bebe Rexha and One Republic. “Standing” has a strong message and imagery – don’t wait for people to run over you and shatter your dreams, and, as Linda says “don’t live as a victim of your own bad thoughts.” Her unique persona and this energetic song (co-written by one of Sweden’s best internationally known talents, Ulf Nilsson, with whom Linda has previously recorded) should help Linda acquire worldwide attention.

  • KARAZEY and ESTY RICHARD, “Through My Mind”

“Through My Mind” is a breezy, effervescent pop/dance track brought two you by two artists from Kuala Lampur, Malaysia, producer Karazey and vocalist Esty Richard.  With its delightful, pulsating rhythm and a vocal by Esty that could remind you alternately of Halsey or Emily Warren albeit with some gentler tones. Karazey is another producer who is coming to your attention while still a teenager. He knows how to build good momentum and provide focus on the strong vocal while creating a backdrop that’s not flashy while still being memorable. “Through My Mind” is a fine introduction to both artists.

  • WIESE, “Hear Me”

The positive post-lockdown songs of the pandemic continue with “Hear Me” by Norwegian producer Wiese. He’s from Bergen – the same place from which hail Kygo and Alan Walker.  He’s definitely got a talent for creating a mix influenced by R3HAB and Imanbek in “Hear Me”, an uplifting song about all of the possibilities life still has to offer post-pandemic. Wiese’s mix of deft female vocal and pitched-down male vocal – likely by the same uncredited singer, Erin Jarvis – offers a welcome dynamic, and “Hear Me” works well for the dance floor with radio potential too.

 

 

 

 

#BILLCSTop30 #618, July 19/21

If you haven’t already done so, get those dancing shoes ready for the rest of the summer because there is plenty of hot dance music of all sub-genres for you to enjoy, and part of the fun is finding out about it through sources like my blog or the ONLINE RADIO AFFILIATES (see details after the post).  Once again, we have a new #1 from an artist who has been to the top before and just released a new album on Friday!!

That artist of course is Denver-based electronic producer Illenium, whose fourth album Fallen Embers dropped on Friday. While not as strong a release as Ascend, it has plenty of highlights and emotional shifts that will keep you totally engrossed.  Illenium’s recent single “Sideways”, which is now a North American dance radio hit – a bit surprising considering it’s usually harder than what dance radio normally plays – featuring Valerie Broussard’s stunning vocal and production partner Nurko.  You can also check out the album opener “Blame Myself” below, featuring an out-of-character but bang on appearance by Tori Kelly.

Trying to get a place in line for the top is the glorious “The Feels” by Cash Cash and the amazing Alex Newell, which rises 9-4. Though not a single – a strange move by the record company – it can be found on Cash Cash’s latest album Say It Like You Feel It.

Also contending for the top is “Can’t Stay Away” by Sweden’s Darin, his first English language release in about eight years. It soars 14-7.  It’s his highest peaking song since 2009’s “Girl Next Door” (#5).

I’m totally loving Greyson Chance’s quirky and infectious “Hellboy” from his album Trophies, which moves up 11-8 to become his second Top 10 on this chart following last year’s “Dancing Next To Me” (#2).

Arriving in the Top 10 for the first are social media stars Nessa Barrett and jxdn, who have two great voices that deserve attention with “La Di Die”, which climbs 13-10.

The Fastest Riser on the chart is some deep house bliss from England courtesy of Charlie Lane, Gold 88 and vocalist Kate Wild with “Give Me That” zipping up the chart 19-11.

Toronto indie pop/rock duo Crash Adams have a new personal best on the chart.  “Symphony” rises 15-12, surpassing the #13 peak of last year’s “Too Hot To Touch”.

While “Myself In You” yields the pole position to “Sideways”, “Slip Away” by French producer Kislaw and NYC singer/songwriter Victor Perry continues to build momentum, up 17-13.

“You” by Regard, Troye Sivan and Canada’s own Tate McRae is one of the more distinct songs you’ll hear on pop and dance radio, and it climbs 21-15.

The “Reprise version” of Moby’s “Natural Blues” as passionately sung by Gregory Porter and Amythyst Kiah moves up 24-17, from Moby’s recent album of retooled songs called Reprise.

New Toronto solo artist CMagic5 continues to climb with her recent “Love Me If You Can” (23-18) from her independent release Ready To Run.

And look who gets the Highest Debut – Ed Sheeran!! I’m highlighting this because it’s the first time he’s appeared on my chart and “Bad Habits” is one helluva way to do that, bowing at an exceptional #20.  It’s definitely one of the songs of Summer ’21. He’ll continue with the mathematically-titled albums with The Quadratic Formula, coming soon.

Premiering at #28 is one fun song that doesn’t let up, thanks to its party vibe and multi-lingual versus (sung in Portuguese, French, and African language Bambara (check out the cool video above, which just dropped today).  It’s “Mon Cheri” by US dance music mainstays and Grammy nominees Sofi Tukker in collaboration with fellow Grammy-nominated Mali duo Amadou & Mariam.  It’s culled from the new Red, Hot + Free album, which has proceeds going to three LGBTQ2S+ charities: The Trevor Project – http://www.thetrevorproject.org The Ally Coalition – https://theallycoalition.org; and SAGE – https://www.sageusa.org. “Mon Cheri” is Sofi Tukker’s first chart appearance since their 2018 #1 with Benny Benassi “Everybody Needs A Kiss” and fourth overall.

The third debut at #30 is “Back To You” by Chicago electronic dance producer Aash Mehta with fellow producer Charlotte’s ephem, a terrific house track for summer that’s guaranteed to make you dance.  Regular blog readers know I’ve been writing about Aash’s music for about five years and it’s his first appearance on the chart. 

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 🙂

ONLINE RADIO AFFILIATES

Radio GTA – listen to The Big 20 from 10pm to Midnight EST as “The Musicman” James Rogers and I bring you the latest in new songs mixed with classics and songs you haven’t heard in a while.  And on Saturdays and Sundays from Noon to 6pm I bring you “Your Weekend Music Mix” six hours of commercial-free music from the 2000’s including many song choices from this blog.

Halton Hills Online – “Your Weekend Music Mix” has a second home on Saturday and Sunday evenings from 8pm to Midnight! It’s a different mix from Radio GTA’s show, and like that one it is also commercial free, proudly brought to you by Symposium Cafe Restaurant & Lounge in Georgetown, Ontario!

Planet Radio Canada – currently on hiatus but returning in August, listen to the “3D Variety Show” with “The Musicman” James Rogers. I’m featured every Tuesday between 7 and 7:30 pm with my New Music Pick of the Week, and I also join occasionally for looks at music from our past as well as the occasional live segment.

 

#BILLCSTop30 #617, July 5/21

The new chart is so chockful of my favourites that it seems pretty static, with only a few songs making decent-sized moves. But if you’ve followed this blog or my chart, then you’ll know that this is temporary.

With this chart, I’m pleased that my number one song is “Myself In You” (above) by Italy’s Lordnox and NYC’s Victor Perry.  Victor’s music has been appearing regularly on the chart since 2016 and this is his first trip to the top, and almost certainly not the last!  I was delighted that Lordnox could capture the glory and diversity of Victor’s vocal in this particular song. It makes the song just so much fun!  Victor has a second entry on the chart with French producer Kislaw called “Slip Away” (below), which climbs 20-17.

Making an impressive move from 7-4 is the emotional electronic whirlwind that is “Sideways” by Illenium, singer Valerie Broussard and fellow producer Nurka.  Illenium performed his first three albums in concert in Las Vegas as his “Trilogy” show this past weekend, which is quite an amazing accomplishment.

Glass Petals’ infectious deep house track “Heartbeat” is making short work of its time in the Top 10, rising 9-6.  One half of Glass Petals, Juno Award-winner Felix Cartal, released his latest album Expensive Sounds For Nice People, which is chock full of many of his single releases of the past two years.

To no surprise, the dance floor banger “The Feels” by Cash Cash featuring Alex Newell advances 12-9 – for now!

The darker and deeper house track from Australia, “Unnatural” by Needs No Sleep and Jeremy Beamish, is the other newcomer to the Top 10, up 11-10.

Whenever I play Greyson Chance’s “Hellboy”, I am stuck humming it for hours on end. This quirky track from his album Trophies climbs 16-11.

The Fastest Riser on the chart was the Highest Debut two weeks ago.  It’s “Can’t Stay Away” by Sweden’s Darin, which is now accompanied by a zesty, splashy video loaded with cool choreography. It soars 22-14.

Another banger from England to keep your ears on is “Give Me That” (23-19) by producers Charlie Lane and Gold 88 with a stunning vocal by Kate Wild.

While it’s already been to the top of the dance charts, “You” by Regard, Troye Sivan and Tate McRae (27-21) is also headed to the Top 10 of Top 40 radio.

The Highest Debut on the chart is also a first on the chart. In the over 23 years that I’ve published it, a completely redone version of a song originally recorded by the same artist has never charted – until now!  Moby’s “Natural Blues” reached #5 on my chart in 2000, and 21 years later he has re-recorded it and some of his other best known songs on his album Reprise.  “Natural Blues”, featuring the stellar vocals of Gregory Porter and Amythyst Kiah arrives at #24.  Some chart geekery: Because it was re-recorded, it is not considered to be a re-entry.

Next up at #26 is India’s Ashwyn with the guitar-soaked “Sell My Soul”.  This single preceded his latest, more progressive rock-flavoured one “Deja Vu” , which I wrote about recently.  Ashwyn is also the second artist from India to appear on my chart, following DJ Shaan’s “By Heart” which reached #10 earlier this year.

My third debut at #27 is the second chart appearance by Australia’s Beamish Brothers called “Anxious”.  Ben and Jeremy previously were featured on “Black Gasoline” by Mark Mendy, which got to #6.  And Jeremy is currently charting at #10 with Needs No Sleep.  Their music keeps on getting better and better so this is their first appearance on the chart as lead artists.  In fact I just wrote about their newest single “Privilege” this past weekend, so check it out too.

The last of four debuts at #28 is “Gone Tomorrow” by Southern California producer Jay Bird with vocalist Clay Agnew.  This is definitely in the Illenium/Trivecta vein and is exceptionally well done as an independent release. Jay Bird recently got to #4 with “Escape”.

Announcements

NEW AND STARTING JULY 10!! I’m pleased to announce that I will be your weekend announcer on Halton Hills Online and Radio GTA  for my show “Your Weekend Music Mix”.  The show will air Saturday and Sunday afternoons on Halton Hills Online and Saturday and Sunday evenings on Radio GTA.  Be sure to check it out next weekend!

Planet Radio Canada is currently on hiatus for a few weeks and will return!

The music from this chart and blog are also featured regularly on the online radio station Radio GTA. You can hear their Big 20 on Wednesday evenings, also with ‘The Musicman’ James Rogers, and listen for songs from the chart too 🙂Scroll down the station’s main page to listen to lots of variety from across the decades!   You can start by joining Radio GTA’s new interactive Facebook group too!!

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 🙂

India’s @Ashwynmusic is back with progressive rock-flavoured electronica called “Déjà Vu”

ASHWYN, “Déjà Vu”

Back in early May, I wrote about Indian producer Ashwyn‘s rock flavoured electronic track “Sell My Soul”, which features awesome guitar work and an intriguing story sung with a committed vocal.  Continuing to find gaps to tell his own musical story, Ashwyn has followed up “Sell My Soul” with the decidedly different “Déjà Vu”.  This one is likely to appeal to rock music fans even more than “Sell My Soul”, while still capturing progressive electronic music fans’ attention with its rich production which would sound fantastic in a stadium setting.  With a big nod to Pink Floyd, the song starts with two minutes of instrumentation before Ashwyn’s vocal kicks in to tell the story about looking outside of the box while routine and history repeat themselves. Amid the beautiful instrumentation are the sounds of a live string quartet orchestrated by Spanish composer Pedro Osuna. “Déjà Vu” is all about mystery, quality and experience, and the real instruments give the song warmth and depth. It’s hardly what you might have expected after “Sell My Soul” and might be a transitional release as a result, but there’s no denying that Ashwyn’s music can stand apart from the rest and hold its own.

Published in: on June 28, 2021 at 10:48 pm  Leave a Comment  
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#BILLCSTop30 #616 – June 21/21

It’s officially summer in Canada and as things start to reopen, I expect there will be a need for more high energy dance music.  I’ve noticed that there are also a lot of personal and reflective songs being released because of people’s experiences in the pandemic.  But all of these songs should make it a quite interesting next few months!

Zipping back to #1 is Los Angeles-based producer Mahalo with “Got That Love”.  This one is all about the build up to the rollicking chorus, a bit different from what Mahalo has produced before, but I’m loving it all the same.  You’ll recall that Mahalo’s “Not Watching Anymore”, which just departed the chart, was #1 right before Idris Elba and Inner City’s “No More Looking Back” which held court for four appearances (eight weeks).  “Got That Love” is Mahalo’s third #1 on this chart.

Moving up 3-2  is Lordnox and Victor Perry’s “Myself In You”. This is a dance release that shows off Victor’s amazing range, and matches the #2 peak of his ballad from last year called “What I Deserve”. Victor’s latest concurrent chart entry, this time with French producer Kislaw, also moves up the chart.  “Slip Away” climbs 25-20.

Jessie Ware’s glorious “Please” soars 6-3 and matches the #3 peak of last year’s “Save A Kiss”, also from the What’s Your Pleasure album.  Jessie has been to #1 twice before, in 2014 with “Say You Love Me” and just before that with her appearance on Miguel’s reworked “Adorn”.

Also with its designs on #1 is “Sideways” by the excellent collaboration of Illenium, singer Valerie Broussard, and fellow producer Nurko.  From Illenium’s forthcoming album Fallen Embers, it climbs 15-7 to become Illenium’s 8th Top 10 entry.

 

Singer/songwriter Chris Blue gets his first Top 10 with “Moon” climbing 11-8.  I’m looking forward to hearing what this Season 12 winner of “The Voice” has coming up next!

Vancouver’s Glass Petals arrive in the Top 10 with “Heartbeat” rising 13-9.  It’s one of those great dance songs I referenced up top that you might not hear in a club yet but you can enjoy wholeheartedly before they reopen.

 

The same sentiments go for “I Want Love” by Gryffin in a punchy Cat Dealers remix that moves up 12-10.  The Brazilian brothers who are Cat Dealers will be touring North America, but just got hit with a setback with passport issues, so hopefully they will be resolved soon!

The Fastest Riser on the chart is the no holds barred rave up by Cash Cash and Alex Newell called “The Feels”.  It vaults 23-12 and is culled from Cash Cash’s new album Say It Like You Feel It.

Also making a bold move is Greyson Chance, who has also announced a fall North American tour that will be coming to a city near you!  From his upcoming album Trophies is the fun and seductive “Hellboy”, moving up 22-16.

The highest of four debuts belongs to Sweden’s Darin with his English-language pop/dance delight “Can’t Stay Away”, which arrives at #22.  It’s Darin’s first chart entry since 2010’s #8 “Lovekiller”, so a big ‘welcome back’ is in order!

Next up at #25 is Toronto indie teenage singer of Portuguese heritage who calls herself CMagic5. Her sultry new single “Love Me If You Can” deserves your attention with its incredibly catchy chorus.

Then at #27 there’s the first appearance on the chart for Dutch producer Regard with “You”. It’s a unique track boosted by excellent vocals from Troye Sivan (his 9th chart entry) and Canada’s Tate McRae, also appearing on the chart for the first time.

The final new addition to the chart is the beautiful new electropop song “Waves” by Belgian producer Anzano and go-to vocalist/songwriter Robbie Rosen at #28.  It’s Robbie’s fourth consecutive entry – though “Habits” departs after reaching #20, “When I Lost You” is still hanging in at #15 after peaking at #4. 

NEW!! I’m pleased to announce that I will be your weekend announcer on Halton Hills Online and Radio GTA starting in July for my show “Your Weekend Music Mix”.  The show will air Saturday and Sunday afternoons on Halton Hills Online and Saturday and Sunday evenings on Radio GTA.  Watch for it in less than two weeks!!

Planet Radio Canada has returned to the interwebs with ‘The Musicman’ James Rogers and his “3D Variety Show” each week for three hours of great music as well as a few features.  Listen to my New Music Pick of the Week (usually featuring a song on the chart) in the second hour of the show.  Tomorrow, the show will feature the music of The Bee Gees!  Planet Radio Canada’s “3D Variety Show” is simulcast on http://www.classichits.ca and http://www.radiogta.ca from 6 to 9 pm EST.

The music from this chart and blog are also featured regularly on the online radio station Radio GTA. You can hear their Big 20 on Wednesday evenings, also with ‘The Musicman’ James Rogers, and listen for songs from the chart too 🙂Scroll down the station’s main page to listen to lots of variety from across the decades!   You can start by joining Radio GTA’s new interactive Facebook group too!!

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 🙂

 

 

Boston’s @AlmostOwenmusic returns with post-pandemic anthem “State of Mind”

ALMOST OWEN, “State of Mind”

I’ve written about the music of Boston’s indie alt.rocker Almost Owen several times over the past few years. He’s an inventive songwriter, singer and musician who has unique perspectives on life that get translated into song.  I didn’t connect with many of his songs last year, but “State of Mind” is a refreshing and joyous anthem that he wrote as a way to break out of the pandemic rut that we’ve all experienced.  The video is bright and uplifting, and we now get to see an updated visual side of Almost Owen that only makes you want more.  I particularly like his vocal in “State of Mind”, it seems to have drawn some soulful inspiration from Jamie Foxx’s “Blame It”.  All I can ask is for more songs like “State of Mind” please!

Published in: on June 18, 2021 at 11:20 pm  Leave a Comment  
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NYC singer/songwriter @PeterWisemusic calls out for individuality in “Window Dressing”

PETER WISE, “Window Dressing”

Peter Wise basks in a classic pop/rock setting and reshapes it and makes it his own in “Window Dressing”.  He’s supported as diverse talent as The Eagles and Lisa Fischer, and has his own stories to tell in his own way.  Graced with a beautiful tone in his voice, you might think at the start that “Window Dressing” might be full of upbeat whimsy, like early Jason Mraz. But the song is about staying true to yourself and forging your own path, rather than being a cookie-cutter facsimile to the latest trend in pop music.  He gets his point across in an earnest, ear-catching way without having the need to create a big anthem about being an underdog.  With fine songs like “Window Dressing”, expect Peter Wise to get his due as more people learn about him and his songs.

Published in: on June 5, 2021 at 8:14 pm  Leave a Comment  
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The double whammy of talent that is @SanHolobeats and @ChetPorter bring you anthemic “you’ve changed, i’ve changed”

SAN HOLO and CHET PORTER, “you’ve changed, i’ve changed”

“you’ve changed, i’ve changed” is a straight-forward song that is loaded with ear-grabbing power, thanks to its larger than life chorus, as brought to you by the dynamic talents that are San Holo and Chet Porter.  Although both artists’ biggest successes have been in progressive electronic genre, “you’ve changed, i’ve changed” is a rock song through and through. Included are keyboard and xylophone interjections provided by Chet, who also sings lead with a vocal that will sit especially well with Porter Robinson fans.  Anyone else who has seen San Holo in concert knows he is a real crowd pleaser rock star-type who immediately draws in the audience.  And likewise, I’ve seen Chet perform, and he’s an unpredictable melodic perfectionist.  Bringing the two together is indeed a really good thing that needs to be repeated.  I can certainly visualize “you’ve changed, i’ve changed” as the opener at a San Holo concert.  It’s included in San Holo’s new album, out this Friday, called bb u ok (album 2).

Check out “rot” by Axel Mansoor @iamaxelm from his EP “i hadn’t ever loved myself”

AXEL MANSOOR, “rot”

While I’ve written several times about SoCal-based singer/songwriter Axel Mansoor, the recent Clubhouse Icon and Emmy Award nominee spent some time overseas in his family home in Mauritius, and has shared a lot of personal release through his EP “i hadn’t ever loved myself”, from which is culled “rot”.  The EP also contains “kids can be so stupid”, which I wrote about not long ago.  “rot” took me longer to figure out and process, with its jangly arrangement and fuzzy production (below, reminding me of Chet Porter and Alison Wonderland’s wonderful collaboration of last year called “Bummed”) which tends to obscure some of the lyrics but is an enjoyable listen nonetheless.  But do check out the acoustic video of “rot” above.  What I’ve appreciated most about Axel in writing about him since 2017 is how genuine he is.  He takes this with him on the Clubhouse APP in his Lullaby Club, and to his Facebook and Instagram videos.  It’s a lovely version of “rot”, and now we can hear all of the lyrics, which strip away the “rot” of our younger years (which we always take with us anyway) in favour of our eventual growth and maturity, which make us better people in the end.  

 

In “Punching Bag”, Brandyn Burnette @EMAN8 gets candid about post-relationship feelings

BRANDYN BURNETTE, “Punching Bag”

Breakups: we all have had them, and some are worse than others, after a longer period of time than others. Since the end of a previous long relationship, Brandyn Burnette has reflected to gather his thoughts about it in “Punching Bag”. Every relationship is different, so these are a unique set of lyrics that capture his perspective.  And you can’t just put on airs or trash the relationship in a pop song because neither approach works.  Brandyn has opted for some eloquence amid other direct words, including the title, because most people feel exactly like that in the same circumstances.  The melody is on the bright side and the song looks out for the better for both parties as they move on.  “Punching Bag” is probably one of Brandyn’s best recent songs, capturing the thoughtfulness of some of his earlier songs circa 2015-16 and continuing to show the diversity in the scope of his growing repertoire.  The video above has another interpretation of the song, which is the aftermath of a spat rather than a relationship.

Published in: on May 25, 2021 at 10:26 pm  Leave a Comment  
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