“Rewind” is the charming and thoughtful new pop/soul EP from NYC-based singer/songwriter Victor Perry @wallflowerperry

VICTOR PERRY, Rewind (EP)

Hot off the presses, Rewind is the first EP from Georgia-born, NYC-based singer/songwriter Victor Perry since 2016’s 4 A.M. Nostalgia.  Throughout his intervening work with numerous dance music producers and in the EP of his own side project Labrose, Victor’s songwriting and style has grown immensely.  His aim is to be a versatile pop-soul singer like his idols, Whitney Houston and Rihanna, while also being a thoughtful songwriter who can concoct great songs for his far-ranging voice.  

The six songs in Rewind appeal because of their ability to be steadfast and solid, challenging the listener with his words while making them shine with the varied tones in his voice. “What I Deserve”, the lead single, is the best example of Victor stretching his boundaries with an emotional song, yet it’s one that instantly grows on you too.  In “Undercurrent”, there are times when Victor is heard singing without words and that’s just as eminently listenable as the rest of the song.  In “Run”, his higher vocal range is put to great use, and his ability to control those high notes and make them into another instrument is testament to his talent.  The EP is rounded out with two other gentle pop/soul songs, “Reciprocity” and the title song (with first co-producer Chris Belmont), as well as the lead off dance track “Greenlight”, another delight for fans of his work with second co-producer Levi alongside “Lost Boy”, “Moonlight”, and “Sail”.

Rewind is an EP that will appeal to all ages and traverses the pop-soul genres, often relying on softer melodies that anchor unique lyrics and perspectives.  I expect that Rewind will afford Victor many more opportunities that will be the result of much ongoing hard and well-thought out work that often sounds graceful and effortless in the end.

victorperry4

Published in: on July 3, 2020 at 8:10 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Have a blast with the good humour of “Superstar” by #ThePrinceKarma

THE PRINCE KARMA, “Superstar”

The music of “Superstar” is a throwback to European dance hits of the 90’s like Real McCoy’s “Another Night” with dashes of novelty humour like in Aqua’s “Barbie Girl”.  It’s set to a strut-worthy beat as brought to you by the Greek artist known as The Prince Karma. The Prince caught attention not long ago in Europe with “Later Bitches” and “No More”, and “Superstar” is the lead track from a new three song EP.  The lightheartedness of “Superstar” is reinforced by its goofy video, which is an affable homage to “A Night At The Roxbury” at times.  The Prince Karma is no flash in the pan though.  The rest of the EP features two other strong songs, one about “Rick James” and the other called “It’s The DJ”, another homage this time to classic house music with vocal by no less than house legend Ron Carroll (also heard recently on Mercer’s amazing house jam “Satisfy”).  Expect to hear much more from The Prince Karma.

Published in: on July 2, 2020 at 8:16 pm  Leave a Comment  
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80’s classic “Talking In Your Sleep” is turned inside out and transformed by singer @LiaRosemusic (c/o TV’s #TheOrder)

LIA ROSE, “Talking In Your Sleep”

Lia Rose hails from San Francisco, and a lot of Netflix viewers heard her rendition of The Romantics’ 1984 smash “Talking In Your Sleep” in the final moments of the finale to season two of “The Order”.  I dread covers of some of my favourite songs, but on occasion an artist can transform one with a fresh take.  Lia Rose gives the bright and bouncy rock/dance track a deep and dark twist, slowing it down with a lush and languid melody accompanied by a taut vocal.  Kudos to the music producers for “The Order” because “Talking In Your Sleep” fit the scene perfectly.  And it has opened up many doors for Lia Rose, through which “Talking In Your Sleep” will continue to find fans.

Published in: on July 2, 2020 at 8:16 pm  Leave a Comment  
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British rocker @JackGarratt sings a timely reassurance that everything will be “Better”

JACK GARRATT, “Better”

In these strange times, “Better” by Jack Garratt contains an optimistic viewpoint that music fans need to hear.  It’s culled from his second album Love, Death & Dancing, which is divided up into four parts.  “Better” kicks off part two, and at times Jack’s vocal will remind you of label-mate Brandon Flowers; the energy level in the song could easily have taken cues from The Killers’ earlier releases.  It all amounts to an infectious rocker, full of nifty guitar work and hooks which underscore Jack’s reassurances that “everything will work itself out”.  And that’s a simple philosophy that needs to be bottled up and given away.  Hearing it in “Better” though is a great start!

 

Published in: on July 2, 2020 at 8:16 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Nashville’s @thisisMokita sings about being completely smitten in “Bad”

MOKITA, “Bad”

After many fine songs in 2019 – two of which, “Kiss And Tell” and “London” reached #3 on my chart and ended up in my Top 20 of the year – Nashville’s Mokita returns with the lighter, whimsical “Bad”.  The singer/songwriter is completely smitten in this song, and he doesn’t care if the object of his affection is “Bad” for him or not, he’ll just have to deal with that and get through it.  You kind of hope it will all work out for him in the end, but most of us know that a one-way crush isn’t going to go anywhere.  Perhaps that’s why the song has a danceable, airy, slice-of-life kind of electronic rhythm that makes it quite enjoyable in just under 3 minutes.

Published in: on July 2, 2020 at 8:16 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“17” is full of reminiscences and what if’s, sincerely sung by UK newcomer @AshleySingh__

ASHLEY SINGH, “17”

It’s only his third release, but “17” has the potential to spread wings and take off for UK singer/songwriter Ashley Singh.  His straight-forward pop-rock take on reminiscences and what if’s about a past crush in “17” are so genuine you can hear the natural tremble in his voice.  I won’t give it away, but the song will blindside you with its first verse, so then you have to hear the rest!  Although his influences are wide and varied, citing Coldplay and Joni Mitchell, the melody of “17” screams Shawn Mendes’ “Stitches” (a UK #1 too). The song will also appeal to Shawn’s huge audience, and it doesn’t hurt that he’s blessed with similar good looks of a Zayn Malik either.  Ashley Singh is one fine talent and I look forward to hearing more.

Ashley Singh

Published in: on July 2, 2020 at 8:16 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“Ya Bish!” is the ridiculously catchy dancefloor filler from mysterious new producer @partywithraydj

partywithray, “Ya Bish!”

partywithray is an L.A.-based producer/remixer who came out of nowhere seemingly to land on ZHU’s “Came For The Low” last year, which alone has racked up close to 6 million streams on Spotify.  He then grabbed a remix spot on Mahalo & Disco Killerz’s EP for “Tongue Tied”.  Following a similarly mysterious path to ZHU, partywithray (who appears to be aka Freddy Janney) has now released “Ya Bish!”.  It’s a trifle of electronic nonsense, except that it has the one-two punch of a killer of a whispered vocal hook, layered over top of an irresistible, droning bass synth.  That simply spells Dancefloor Filler in my books.  Don’t be surprised to hear this in one of the online electronic festival events in the middle of a set that’s just getting wound up.  “Ya Bish!” is silly and carefree fun, and partywithray is a certainly a promising new producer to watch.

Published in: on June 30, 2020 at 10:46 pm  Leave a Comment  
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The right remix brings “I Thought You Were My Friend” by UK singer/songwriter @JamesLeon1 to new heights courtesy of @Pollarik

JAMES LEON, “I Thought You Were My Friend” (Pollarik ’86 remix)

Artists should never give up on a good song.  Originally released last year, London-based singer/songwriter James Leon attracted some fair attention with “I Thought You Were My Friend”. Despite its strong lyrics, I think the mix of the song was missing something.  Producer/remixer Pollarik has worked on some of James’ other songs, so who better to reignite “Friend” with a sizzling 80’s-flavoured remix that is just begging for a dance floor complete with mirror disco ball.  James’ vocal sounds great too in this strut-worthy mix.  Electronic dance music fans, especially those with retro dance fever, will have a blast with this one.

Published in: on June 30, 2020 at 10:46 pm  Leave a Comment  
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L.A.-based singer/songwriter @ChrisWallace101 is back with sooo romantic “Let Me Love You”

CHRIS WALLACE, “Let Me Love You”

It’s been great to see L.A.-based singer/songwriter Chris Wallace back and releasing new music after 8 years since the fantabulous “Remember When (Push Rewind)” (from the album also called Push Rewind, which I wrote about back in the day) took over #1 on my chart that summer and finished up as my #2 song of its year.  “Time Bomb” and “Keep Me Crazy” also followed into my Top 10, but then Chris’ career went uncharacteristically quiet.  In recent years he married and became a dad, but that hardly stops an enthusiastic return.  “Let Me Love You” is his third new release (following “Stay Home” and “Insecurities”, whose honesty touched many fans), and is hardly like the aforementioned songs – a warm, romantic ballad that could be a wedding song for future couples, since it was in fact written about the moments leading up to his own marriage proposal (video below).  It’s gentle and sung from the heart with a great vocal, and there’s not much more you can ask for with a song like this.  Chris is now frequently performing and chatting online on Facebook or Instagram, with much more new music on the way, so I can’t wait to hear what’s coming next!

Published in: on June 30, 2020 at 10:46 pm  Leave a Comment  
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It’s 10/10 #13: @Yello_band @KidBloomusa @EbonyroseBuckle #DeanRobert @Jazz_Mino @Airportsmusic @Toniiamusic @Boye_Sigvardt & H. Kenneth @KenFleet @SC_Undercover @Mindchatter

It’s 10/10 – Edition 13!! 

A second 10/10 post in June to close out the month brings you a lot of unique music that requires your full attention in order to win your appreciation.  We cover the globe with songs from Germany, England, Ireland, Australia, Denmark, Switzerland and the U.S. with a dashes of mystery and fun!

In 10/10 (or tenoutoften) ,  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. 

  • YELLO, “Waba Duba”

The Swiss maestros that are Yello can orchestrate the best complex electronic nonsense even into their late 60’s and early 70’s, and have returned with their first release in three years called “Waba Duba” from their upcoming album Point.   “Waba Duba” recalls some of their best work of the 80’s, such as “The Race” or “Goldrush”.  Don’t try to confound yourself by trying to figure out if there is any plot to the song.  Instead enjoy the always-bizarre vocal and the layers of synths and samples that make some of the most unique sounds you will hear in pop music.  “Waba Duba” is loads of fun, destined to annoy the heck out of you like “Oh Yeah” did all those years ago while you groove to the beats.

  • KID BLOOM, “Wounded/Surrounded”

“Wounded/Surrounded” is an anthemic-sounding, atmospheric new melodic electronica release from L.A. singer/songwriter Kid Bloom.  The song takes you on a journey through a sea of emotions, wrought by the singer’s captivating voice.  When he sings without effects it sparkles and sometimes sounds like Frankmusik; at other points the song is awash in synths and vocal manipulation and because of it you can feel the bewilderment.  Alternately dreamy and thought-provoking, “Wounded/Surrounded” is an ear-grabber and well-worth your attention.

  • EBONY BUCKLE, “Ghost”

Ebony Buckle is a London-based singer/songwriter originally hailing from Australia.  She has a stunning, controlled, theatrical voice which immediately recalls Kate Bush and Imogen Heap.  And her pristine vocal puts all the right human touches in “Ghost”, a pop song that could have otherwise been a difficult listen.  It’s a true story about being physically apart for two years from husband (and co-writer) Nick due to visa issues.  And that is simply heartbreaking, a separation that could have been irreparable.  Instead, they wrote “Ghost” over Skype, turning their story into song so that anyone else in an unfortunate state of separation can relate and heal.  Be sure to give “Ghost” your complete attention.  It would also be perfect as set to a lyrical dance routine.

  • DEAN ROBERT, “Get Up”

It’s strange that even before I read up about Dean Robert, the other voice that came to mind when you hear “Get Up” is The Script’s Danny O’Donoghue.  For Dean also hails from Ireland and even opened for The Script when he was part of a band.  Now Berlin-based, “Get Up” is bright, energetic dance second release for the singer that will win you over. Dean’s voice may be a little bit too manipulated in the production at times but there’s a great melody afoot in “Get Up” and it moves along briskly and enthusiastically.

  • JAZZ MINO, “Like A Drunk Girl”

UK singer/songwriter Jazz Mino releases music that needs to be heard by more of you who enjoy interesting pop with idiosyncratic perspectives.  Her latest single, “Like A Drunk Girl”, is more about standing up for yourself and making your own decisions to do what you want than meets the ear.  The title is actually negative imagery for what other people might say to put you down, so you cave in and do what they say.  Jazz Mino’s always affable nature really shines through in this song which sings from both experience and the heart.  Check out the lyric video above.

  • AIRPORTS, “U Feel It 2”

You never know these days if an artist is a band or a singer judging by the names in use.  “U Feel It 2” is a delightful slice of romantic pop from Australian singer Airports (aka Aaron Lee).  It’s definitely a mood-setter with a subtler boy-next-door vocal that shies away from what would be called “boy band pop”.  The production focuses on the song’s lovely melody and there is definitely radio play potential here.  Check out what alternative video ideas occur above when Airports’ original plans were scuttled by COVID-19.

  • TONIIA and SUNNIE WILLIAMS, “Only Human”

Blending hip hop and trap flavours with electronics, German producer Toniia has released “Only Human”.  It features the strong and sultry voice of Sunnie Williams, whose vocal is the drawing power for “Only Human” for its first minute, before the beats kick in.  After that, the song is a sea of many moods with some big drops and synths that command “Only Human” until its finish.  It’s a fast listen at 2:49 with many sounds and qualities to perk up your ears.  Watch the lyric video above.

  • BOYE & SIGVARDT and H. KENNETH, “Party Sucks”

Don’t let the title fool you – “Party Sucks” is actually a dark slice of deep house music from Danish producers Boye & Sigvardt and Nashville’s H. Kenneth that will appeal to fans of recent work by Mahalo among others.  The classic house rhythm is the key with pitched-down vocals that make it perfect for a late night set.  And it’s cool that Boye & Sigvardt and H. Kenneth never get stuck in one style or groove, collaborating with UK producers Sondr,  creating diverse music that shows they would rather be innovators than producing the next wannabe house anthem.  

  • SC.UNDERCOVER, “Morals”

“Morals” is a standout song because it sounds like nothing else out there.  Brought to you by UK producer/songwriter/vocalist SC.Undercover, the song fuses pop and R&B flavours with drum ‘n bass vibes, making for a fast-paced ride.  At its core, the song is about finding love after making mistakes and experiencing significant regret.  The warm, uncredited female vocal is offset by SC.Undercover’s own vocals. At one point, he provides a gentle rap, and at other times hits upper register harmony vocals which remain fascinating and noticeable in the background, forming the song’s hook.  “Morals” is unconventional pop/dance music at its most listenable.

  • MINDCHATTER, “Language”

Mindchatter is a NYC-based producer of mystery who doesn’t identify him/herself in any of his Twitter, Facebook or Soundcloud bios.  “Language” is an intricate, somewhat experimental sounding song that’s intriguing because it seems to borrow from late 90’s Everything But The Girl and Roísin Murphy at their most daring, fusing it with other more contemporary sounds you might associate with label-mate ZHU.  “Language” is not for everyone but you have to admit it is one very cool, well-produced song, accompanied by quite a different visualization, above.