According to their website, Magazine Gap have played gigs all around the world – “the UK (including headline performances in 13 major cities) and over to Ireland, crisscrossed the United States (from New York to Chicago, New Orleans to Los Angeles) and around the Far East (Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong), plus delivered an acclaimed concert at the world’s most eclectic music festival – Montreux – in front of a discerning audience of 2,000 people”.
That’s a lot of venues, a lot of audiences and a lot of ears on their music. And it’s hard to imagine that many of those weren’t captured by their popular funk stylings. It’s a genre driven by easily picked up bass and drum grooves, which gives their music real energy. The new single, ‘Calling Card’ is the latest example of this, and you can find out all about their new EP of the same name on the Magazine Gap website.
It’s been a big couple of years for young UK song writer Ellie Jane. This talented young lady reached the final of Open Mic UK, a huge national independent talent competition, in 2015 and also saw a collaboration with drum’n’bass duo Mind Vortex featured on Radio 1. These things don’t happen by accident, and are a marker for just how promising Ellie Jane’s musical career could be.
Her latest effort, six song EP ‘Clocks’, sees her working solo. As demonstrated by the lead track above, her sound is built on the foundations of accessible pop. However, her love for urban, hip hop and drum’n’bass is also evident on the EP, setting her apart from many of her peers.
A talented songwriter who is deserving of the growing exposure his music is getting, Dale McKay is a Sheffield based pop artist with a twist. Showcasing his upbeat, acoustic side as well as his fine vocal and great production, his online streaming release of ‘Make You Happy’ does exactly what such releases should do – whet the appetite for the releases to follow.
In this case, the track is here to promote a new EP titled ‘Here and Now’. A four track release which includes the song above, it arrives from online stores from September 16th and has all the hallmarks of a very strong independent release. This is pop music minus the incessant ‘beats’ and without a whiff of cheese – all of which makes it a worthy EP release to get excited about.
When it comes to music and song writing that chooses to step outside the normal bounds of style and genre, there’s a thin line between brilliance and pretentiousness. And whether you think this latest release from Joe Rhinewine is the former or the latter will likely come down to your taste.
Available to stream online now, new single ‘In The Box (Put It)’ finds Rhinewine on knockabout form, laying an improvised vocal over a very well executed blues backing. The approach may be jarring to some, and outright dismissed by others. But there’s a humour and purity of purpose here that gives the track a lo-fi charm that’s hard to dismiss, and it’s more than enough to raise interest in his debut EP – ‘Songs from NowHere’ – which is out now on Amazon.
An old folk classic, ‘Wild Mountain Thyme’ has stuck around for a reason. And from the very first moments of this new version by Philip Murray Warson you know you’re in safe hands. From the subtle opening guitar, to the warm harmonies and even the beautiful horn section, this is superbly built folk from the ground up.
You can download and keep a copy by clicking above (top right), and there’s plenty more of this beautifully lilting vocal in the full debut EP – out now on Bandcamp: http://philipmurraywarson.bandcamp.com/
19 years old but already getting herself heard in the music industry, Naomi is a new pop song writing force to be reckoned with. ‘Take Back the Power’ is her new video, taken from her new EP of the same name out April 22nd. And for those with a love of great pop music, this is one to get your ears around.
In fact, it might be well worth getting on board with Naomi now, because it may not be long before she’s much more widely known. National newspapers are already touting her as a possible star, and BBC radio aren’t far behind on the hype train. If you want to be able to say you were the first of your friends to hear her, then now’s the perfect time to bookmark http://www.naomimusic.co.uk/
When an artist’s debut EP is titled ‘Take Back The Power’, the betting is good that that artist is set to make a strong impact. In the case of singer and song writer Naomi, this EP is likely to do just that.
The track above is just a small taste of her infectious pop sound, and has already got the attention of new music tastemakers at The Guardian, The Independent, BBC radio, Huffington Post and a whole lot more. Frankly, the list is too long to type out.
In addition, her music is produced by a trio of top names, who have worked with huge names including Michael Jackson, Westlife and another long list of global stars.
In short, the signs are good for Naomi and her new EP, set to make a splash on April 22nd.
When a songwriter is compared to artists like Jose Gonzalez, Nick Drake and others of that ilk you know one thing for sure – this is going to music that moves you. This is definitely the case with Calming River, whose new EP ‘The Ones That We Left Behind’ is out now.
Thoughtful and melancholic without straying into outright negativity, the EP is clearly the work of a man who knows his way around an acoustic guitar. The complexity of those acoustic guitar lines is astounding, and would make a fine instrumental album in their own right.
However, the lyrics add a new dimension, full of feeling and reality. It’s said that Calming River is an artist best suited to small, intimate venues, and it’s not hard to see why from this EP release.
The Rebel Scientist is an independent songwriter who has cut his teeth in a different environment to many other songwriters in his genre. As a session guitarist, he has toured the world with huge stars and played some great venues, and has also performed on national TV and radio alongside those artists thanks to his renown within the industry.
However, his own independent songwriting is of a completely different scale. Writing under the Rebel Scientist pseudonym, you can only assume that this side project is one that allows him to chase his own creativity in between working bouts of working on other people’s songs. Whether this is 100% accurate is not altogether clear, but it’s the feeling that comes from this great 4 track pop EP.
The songs have a freedom and energy about them that suggest an artist freed from constraint. He’s taken what he’s learned from his top pop career, and twisted into this solid, well made piece of independent music. Creatively wide ranging, but also recogniseable and accessible, these four tracks show that The Rebel Scientist os more than capable of turning his guitarist hand to a different arena.
You can hear/buy the EP now on Spotify and iTunes.
Good music is often the marriage of two fundamental elements – strong lyrics and good instrumentation. It seems simple to say it, but it’s surprising how many independent artists don’t get that balance quite right. Strong lyricists are often let down by their lack of musical inspiration, while excellent composers struggle to match the qulaity of their music with their words.
However, songwriter Theo Mak and his group E Mute have the balance right.
Passionately written by the politically motivated Theo, the songs reflect with wit and verve on the current state of the nation and the world beyond it. The subtitle of the EP – A Collection of Songs for the Current Political & Socio-economic Crisis – gives a strong idea as to what to expect.
But this proto-punk style of lyricism would fall flat if the music didn’t back it up. And thankfully, this EP is a shining example of edgy, gritty indie, effectively delivered.
You can find all this out for yourself, for less than a fiver, on iTunes.