There’s a new dynamite duo in town: @AashMehtamusic and Victor Perry @wallflowerperry pair up for the gentle electronic ballad “Weightless”

AASH MEHTA and VICTOR PERRY, “Weightless”

Well this was an unexpected delight! I’ve been writing about the music of both Chicago-based producer Aash Mehta and NYC-based singer/songwriter Victor Perry each for almost five years.  Little did I know that they were collaborating on new music, and “Weightless” is the first result.  Completely in harmony with each of their styles, “Weightless” is a gentle but progressive electronic ballad that looks on the positive side of heartbreak for fresh starts.  The singular piano riffs at the start leave you to believe you might be in store for something a little more acoustic, but the uplifting synths and beats kick in to underscore the importance of not being afraid of the unknown.  Victor’s softer tones are in beautiful understated storytelling mode, and you will be able to easily visualize hearing “Weightless” amid lights and lasers once concert-going resumes.

Published in: on January 17, 2021 at 11:06 pm  Leave a Comment  
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NYC based-singer/songwriter @Reigenmusic has a big vocal showcase in the steamy “blue”

REIGEN, “blue”

“blue” evokes the images of a lonely city after a passionate relationship has ended. It’s brought to you in steamy glory by NYC-based singer/songwriter Reigen, a familiar name to these blog pages for his consistently solid, regular releases. “blue” is definitely one of his best – his voice shines in all of its glory with only the slightest of synths and guitar to accompany it, and when it lets loose, it’s dazzling.  When “blue” shifts into mid-tempo, it may remind you of of the rhythm in Ariana Grande’s “break up with your girlfriend, i’m bored”.  “blue” is all about atmosphere and loss, having had a wild, uninhibited relationship that is no more.  Reigen presents it beautifully for you to indulge and enjoy.

Published in: on January 16, 2021 at 3:23 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Get to know the surreal melancholic style of NYC-based singer/songwriter @LisaRemar with “Fell Into”

LISA REMAR, “Fell Into”

For those who enjoy complex lyrics, with rich, melodic landscapes, then you should get to know the music of queer NYC-based alt.pop singer/songwriter Lisa Remar with “Fell Into”.  The song is deep, melancholy and layered, with rhythms pointing to the ‘boom bap’ bass-and-drums hip hop style of the 80’s and 90’s, and a basic theme of what to do and think when encountering deceptive people who only care about themselves. That creates an altered perception of those people which can be sometimes surreal and makes you question your own good judgment. Taking cues vocally from artists like Fiona Apple and Lana Del Rey, Lisa has created somewhat of a maze of emotions in “Fell Into”. Half Japanese herself, in the above video shot in Japan, she finds herself alone in somewhat of a distorted reality as she comes to grips with her findings.  And if complex songs are not entirely your thing, you will definitely appreciate the beautiful qualities in Lisa Remar’s voice – fans of the precision of Sinéad O’Connor, Mariah Carey, and Ariana Grande will enjoy.

Published in: on January 16, 2021 at 3:23 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“Bring That Back” is the insanely catchy deep house banger from NYC producer @Gattuso_music, Israeli-Belarusian duo @asketanatchaim and Danish singer @NadiaGattas

GATTÜSO and ASKETA & NATAN CHAIM and NADIA GATTAS, “Bring That Back”

“Bring That Back” is a new banger that’s going to quickly get under your skin and stay there.  It’s from the collective global talents of NYC producer Gattüso and Israeli-Belarusian production duo Asketa & Natan Chaim, featuring a rich and memorable vocal by Danish singer Nadia Gattas.  While the song is called “Bring That Back”, you might be temped to call it “Do You Remember”, or ask what that new song that goes “na na na na / na na na na na na” might be.  Because the deep house rhythm track and song structure are so on point, “Bring That Back” escapes being a novelty song or an insipid pop song that was intended to unwillingly crawl under your skin.  It’s a solid dance track that has immense crossover potential to dance radio airplay.

Meet NYC-based singer @Kerensound whose evocative single “Talisman” casts its own classic pop spell

KÉREN, “Talisman”

Educated at Berklee College and travelling worldwide with symphony orchestras brings a richness to the music of NYC-based singer Kéren with her recent single “Talisman” from her new 6-song album In Form.  Kéren sounds like so many classic alternative and pop singers at different times – Adele, Amy Winehouse, Sade, Björk – yet has also achieved her own sound through the crisp and compelling clarity of her voice and the subtle yet layered arrangement of her music.  “Talisman” is a song that could be set to a cinescape of images for even better effect. Kéren’s worldly music seems to want to unfold a set of stories that will be fit for the ages.  “Talisman” has numerous indelible and mystical qualities about it that warmly pull you in to enjoy.

Published in: on December 2, 2020 at 10:41 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Promises promises: @RobbieRosenlive and @KaceyFifield ponder love and devotion in electro-ballad stunner “Last Breath”

ROBBIE ROSEN & KACEY FIFIELD, “Last Breath”

The time couldn’t be more right for an electro ballad like no other out there right now.  American Idol finalist Robbie Rosen (recently heard on Saxity’s “Fantasy”) and the award-winning Kacey Fifield, who has been performing since she was 10, come together with an original composition that they co-wrote called “Last Breath”.  The song looks back on broken promises made when relationships end, and how they may have been sincere at the time. It also ponders what person will actually be with you when it comes down to your own last breath.  The song’s many subtleties hold up all the way through until some final delicate moments.  The pair could not sing better together, and Kacey is one helluva impressive singer to watch for at only 15 years old.  So, no it’s not a love song – it has its own dynamic which will catch you off guard.  Don’t be too surprised if you’re full of deep sighs and oohs and ahs at the sincere appeal of “Last Breath”.

Published in: on November 28, 2020 at 11:53 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Go with the flow of “All The Waves” by NYC-based Australia born singer/songwriter @ValenciaJamestw

VALENCIA JAMES, “All The Waves”

When I wrote about a release by Valencia James last year, I compared the power in her voice to Lady Gaga.  And while that may be so on that song (“Flames”), in her latest called “All The Waves”, it’s like Dua Lipa meets Sarah McLachlan.  Her soundscape and vivid, memorable lyrics, about working through tough times to bring out the best in us, instantly recall the music of the latter, while her current pop flair recalls the former.  There’s no doubt that it’s an interesting blend which all works well together.  Give “All The Waves” a few spins and add it to a playlist that might also include Kate Bush, The Pretenders, and Annie Lennox where you can definitely appreciate the diversity of a singer like Valencia James.

Published in: on November 28, 2020 at 11:53 pm  Leave a Comment  
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NYC dance producers @TheKnocks team up again with @FosterThePeople for the rich pop grooves of “All About You”

THE KNOCKS and FOSTER THE PEOPLE, “All About You”

I was late to the party with the last collaboration by The Knocks and Foster The People from two years ago called “Ride Or Die”.  It took hearing it at a “The Knocks and Friends” event in NYC to have a belated ‘wow’ moment about that song.  I wasn’t going to let that happen again – “All About You” is a fun slice of dance-pop with a delicious bass groove that contrasts the soaring voice of Mark Foster aptly.  The Knocks are a prolific duo whose work shifts within the dance music realm to provide interesting and unique experiences with each song.  With “Ride Or Die” one of their best known releases, I’m glad teaming up with Foster The People again has worked so well.  The lyrics in “All About You” are very timely and hopeful as the subject of the song snaps out of a low point when someone new comes into his life.  And in other ways, it sounds very old school, drawing influences perhaps from the essential Motown and Stax years of music.  

“Set Me Free” is your ultra-slick end of 2020 Eurohouse anthem by @OliverHeldens and @PartyPupils with vocals by @MAXmusic

OLIVER HELDENS & PARTY PUPILS and MAX, “Set Me Free”

The music business sometimes finds the unlikeliest people making a collaboration that comes out slicker and better than you might expect.  The careers of Oliver Heldens and MAX have been made up of many of such serendipitous events!  Within a year of releasing his own music as a teenager, the Dutch producer’s “Gecko (Overdrive)” (featuring Becky Hill) soared to #1 in the UK.  And that was a liftoff no one could expect – collaborations with the best of the dance music biz followed, along with numerous electronic dance hits and formidable gigs around the world.  MAX’s travels have taken him from modeling and acting, through to being a go-to voice in the dance music world and finding a huge fan base in South Korea (as well as connecting to BTS!), all while making his own music either solo or with his best buddy Ryan in Party Pupils.  So, all of these forces converge to make the heavenly and anthemic “Set Me Free”.  The energetic Party Pupils vibe and MAX’s resilient voice highlight and compliment Oliver’s snazzy production.  “Set Me Free” is one that you will play on repeat and is a great end-of-year anthem through which we can say good riddance to 2020.

“Give It Back” is a pumping new banger from @TheDiscoFries, @Giiantsmusic and singer @AllisonParklive

DISCO FRIES & GIIANTS and ALLISON PARK, “Give It Back”

Making a banger and getting it right is an art unto itself – I’d be one happy camper if the quality of songs like Lady Gaga & Ariana Grande’s “Rain On Me”, Karen Harding & Digital Farm Animals’ “Undo My Heart” and Jerome Price’s “Chasing Feelings” (the latter two of which are currently on my chart) continue into 2021.  Making me very hopeful is a song you can add to this list. “Give It Back” is the second collaboration by veterans of this blog, NYC’s Disco Fries and L.A. trio Giiants, after their recent late night anthem “Believer”.  This time “Give It Back” showcases the voice of L.A.-based co-writer Allison Park, someone perhaps newer to dance music releases but not to performing and songwriting – she’s travelled across the USA and written numerous songs during the last decade.  Her polished tones make “Give It Back” go down easy amid a propulsive and irresistible arrangement.