Buffalo NY native @LexxiRaine goes acoustic with the heartbreak of “Joker”

LEXXI RAINE, “Joker”

Although her direction is now headed away from alternative rock and into the Country music arena with her most recent EP Guilty, Buffalo NY’s lovely Lexxi Raine has a penchant for writing solid, often engaging and sometimes touching songs, whatever the genre may be.  Her latest single “Joker” is her own production while she prepares other songs for future release.  Stripped to acoustics, “Joker” is a cutting and affecting story of heartbreak, when you learn your relationship with your ex never even mattered to them.  It’s an interesting, relatable perspective and Lexxi’s bruised but reflective vocal shines in this purely pop setting. Check out the video above.

Published in: on March 27, 2021 at 10:24 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Meet England’s M. Pike @michaelpasut with edgy but thoughtful rocker “Worthy”

M. PIKE, “Worthy”

“Worthy” is a song that seems to belong in part to a couple of different eras, the post-grunge of the late 90’s when Green Day emerged, and the post-punk of the late 70’s when Elvis Costello and The Clash came into prominence. I’m not sure if that’s what Italy-born, London-based singer/songwriter M. Pike had in mind, but it certainly fuels his music with appeal.  Labeling himself as “the artist of new era”, “Worthy” is bold, edgy and thoughtful – my immediate comparison is to 80’s British rocker Pete Wylie (aka The Mighty Wah), right down to the spoken word reassurance to us all at the two and a half minute mark.  M. Pike’s voice reminds me of Wylie-meets-Billie Joe Armstrong, but with a soulful and more precise undercurrent. “Worthy” tricks you into thinking it will be an all acoustic jam, but the song ignites and you’re in for a pleasant, unique rockin’ ride for these times.

Published in: on March 9, 2021 at 10:40 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Meet Finland’s Lalalow with a dreamy song written with introverts in mind called “Sensory Deprivation”

LALALOW, “Sensory Deprivation”

With a title like “Sensory Deprivation”, you might expect some heady, minimalist, experimental electronic work that might just go right over your head.  Instead, meet the Finnish duo Lalalow (vocalist/keyboardist Nina Jackson and guitarist/bassist Tommi Laivamaa) who have put a lot of thought into creating a brief dreamscape with introverts in mind with “Sensory Deprivation”.  This is not to say that everyone can’t find something to enjoy about the song. The worthy idea here is that introverts (like yours truly) enjoy their time with themselves and do a lot of creative thinking, so why not channel that into a mellow, surreal escape, with Nina’s voice sounding like a cousin of Jessie Ware over lovely instrumentation full of subtleties.  At only 2:54, the song is over sooner than you are aware, making it well worth repeating.  So in the end, don’t think, just sit back, relax, and imagine…

Published in: on March 9, 2021 at 10:40 pm  Leave a Comment  
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British indie pop singer/songwriter @Jazz_Mino returns with a quest for “Happiness” from her new EP “Dirty Laundry”

JAZZ MINO, “Happiness”

There are people we come across in our lives that never seem happy, they always seem to put on a false front or a smiling face at the right times. When you’re in a relationship with someone like this, then it’s best that they move on, for the best for both of you because one day they will find that “”Happiness” doesn’t ever hurt”, as sings British singer/songwriter Jazz Mino.  It’s the new song and lead track from her EP Dirty Laundry, which includes her unique reflections on past relationships such as “Part Of This” and the exceptional “Like A Drunk Girl”, which reached #11 on my personal chart last year.  Like those songs, you must stick with “Happiness” to let it gel and get more personal with you. The thoughtful lyrics and vocal are surrounded by cheerful synths that help make the song – and especially its chorus – sparkle. 

Published in: on February 22, 2021 at 10:36 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Check out “Don’t”, dreamy electronic pop from Miami’s @calicamusic and Chicago producer Daniel Loumpouridis

CALICA and DANIEL LOUMPOURIDIS, “Don’t”

Calica is a singer/songwriter/producer from Miami who has paired up with Chicago songwriter/producer/arranger Daniel Loumpouridis for “Don’t”, which is culled from their EP called Lens.  It’s dreamy, almost low-key psychedelic and 80’s flavoured sophisticated pop for those who enjoy their music tastes outside of the mainstream.  Calica is a graduate of the University of Miami Frost School of Music who broke out within the last year on Tik Tok when an excerpt of her song “Little Girl” went viral.  She’s also recorded and collaborated with Grammy-nominated dance producers SMLE, whose music has graced these blog pages.  At age 17, Daniel Loumpouridis co-produced and co-wrote Louis The Child’s breakout hit “It’s Strange” (featuring K-Flay) and received notice from Taylor Swift and Lorde, among others.  He hasn’t looked back since, becoming a one-guy A&R, recruiting talent for the likes of Alex Da Kid. So with Calica’s well-honed vocal landscapes and Daniel’s layered electronic textures, it will be no surprise if this collaboration receives enough traction to quickly move them out of the indie scene, making it a good time for you to get to know them through “Don’t”.

Published in: on January 29, 2021 at 10:14 pm  Leave a Comment  
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In “You’re Mine” by @Cobimusic, the subject is finding a relationship’s middle ground

COBI, “You’re Mine”

L.A.-based singer/songwriter Cobi continues to release affecting and personal songs such as his latest, “You’re Mine”.  This one documents the struggle to find a relationship’s middle ground, when the singer’s own struggles prevent it from moving on to the next level, and put the relationship at risk.  “You’re Mine” is about wanting someone so much, and not knowing what to do about it.  Cobi’s powerful vocal resonates from deep within, but what could be a morose song is boosted by a fervid, sometimes bluesy rock arrangement that keeps you captivated instead of pushing you away.  I can’t wait to hear what Cobi’s songs will sound like when he has the opportunity to play them in a live concert.  And so above is a live clip that will give you a taste, with the studio version below.

Published in: on November 1, 2020 at 8:48 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“Never Knew” is a 90’s flavoured dance hit in-the-making by UK singer/songwriter @SamDickinson from his 2nd album “Off Script”

SAM DICKINSON, “Never Knew”

I’ve been enjoying Sam Dickinson’s songs for the last 7 years, since the release of his debut album The Stories That Occurred. After a few singles and EP’s in the intervening years, Sam’s much-awaited second album has surfaced, called Off Script. It’s a smashing mix of pop, dance and soul music with a particular connection to the early 90’s. One of the best tracks is “Never Knew”, a dance hit in-the-making which will have you hooked from its first bar, and impresses with its well-layered production. In particular, it will please listeners who enjoyed past songs like “Wild Sun”, as well as the album’s lead off single, “Diamond Skin”, which peaked at #5 and #6 on my personal chart respectively. Those looking for more personal and complex stories can dive deeper into the album’s generous and often affecting 14 songs, which also include his previously released take on Everything But The Girl’s “Missing” as well as his rendition of a lovely track by UK soul singer Mica Paris called “Carefree”. Listen to “Never Knew” up top.

Published in: on October 11, 2020 at 8:02 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“Heart Stop” is an infectious bass-laden rocker by Boston’s @AlmostOwenmusic

ALMOST OWEN, “Heart Stop”

Boston indie singer/songwriter Almost Owen (aka Isaac Haselkorn) has had a busy, prolific last year, releasing several singles, then two amply-filled EP’s, leading to his latest 3-song effort Felt Cute…Might Delete. “Heart Stop” is the stand out track, with its infectious chugga-chugga bass line that rides underneath a positive message about finding inspiration in yourself again and again to keep your heart beating. I find Almost Owen’s songs usually to be chock-filled with a myriad of thoughts when they hover around the three minute mark. “Heart Stop” takes a slightly different less-is-more approach and comes out a winner.

Published in: on October 11, 2020 at 8:02 pm  Comments (1)  
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Get to know the many faces of UK singer/songwriter @iamLeFil with “Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is”

LE FIL, “Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is”

UK singer/songwriter Le Fil is definitely one to watch for many reasons thanks to his intriguing new single and video for “Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is”. Le Fil is of Chinese descent and grew up in a small town in the UK, which obviously had its limitations for this massively creative queer artist. He has channeled that into an optimistic and fun presentation which is sometimes in contrast to the pointed lyrics of “Money”. The appealing music in “Money” is surely inspired by a few pages from the mid-60’s songbook, where you can almost visualize the go-go- dancers. The voice of Le Fil makes you think of 50’s idols like Frankie Avalon on one hand, combined with the soulfulness of Boy George on the other. And the outstanding video is a home production made during the current lockdown in Le Fil’s kitchen through green-screen – colourful, entertaining and flamboyant, and you can enjoy it and his many interesting characterizations up top.

Published in: on September 7, 2020 at 10:49 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“Got My Way” is bright indie electro pop from L.A. trio @thisisMoontower

MOONTOWER, “Got My Way”

The mission of “Got My Way” by L.A. indie electronic trio Moontower is to ensure their listeners are thankful for who they have in their lives, and that even if you stray off your path, you can find your way back through the love of others.  They’ve framed all of this with a bright, upbeat sound that goes down easily led by the fine voice of singer Jacob Culver.  Hand in hand with another new release with Goldroom called “Guess I’m Jaded” that is also receiving traction,  and with with several songs whose Spotify streaming numbers sends them over the two million mark, Moontower is setting itself for merit-based success, and you should definitely put “Got My Way” on your radar.

Published in: on July 19, 2020 at 5:36 pm  Leave a Comment  
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