What I’ve Been Listening To – January 2017
Port Cities – On the Nights You Stay Home
This is yet another group that convinces me that Canadians are great at music. Any indipendent artist supergroup of sorts, this the combination of 3 different solo acts in a glorious song writing, music producing partnership. If the chilled beat with well produced drums wasn’t enough, the chorus when the first set of expertly crafted 3 part harmonies rise their head will convince you of this song. The first album from Port Cities is coming 10th February 2017, and I’m really looking forward to hearing it.
Rationale – Reciprocate
This chap has some very unique vocals and provocative lyrics. If that weren’t enough, this song is crafted to be a fusion of funk and retrowave, sounding very much like modern takes of the 70s and 80s. I’m fine with this. In particular the unique synths sounds top of this oral feast which is driven by a solid beat and pleanty of cheesy guitar strums that definitely ooze with 80s pop charm.
Frances – No Matter
Frances is someone that has been on my radar for quite some time. One of her songs, Let It Out, has become a firm favourite of mine to listen to in the car. I believe I actually mentioned it before last April. This really stripped back acoustic number oozes with charm and poignant lyrics. Her newest song is really quite a departure from a lot of her previous work. Laid bare, piano driven tunes are instead replaced with catchy synth hooks, but still that amazingly clear voice shines through and remains instantly endearing. Despite the radical change in direction from one of my firm favourites, I still really like it, and that is why I’m including it here. Listening to versatile artists is fantastic, because you never quite know where they’ll turn next.
Savoir Adore – Too Late (feat. Paperwhite)
I got about 10 seconds into this song and I fell head over heels for it. The cover art promises modern synthwave, and this tune certainly delivers. From the amazingly aetherial pads in the background to the various chirps that accent the lyrics, this has tons of 80s character, yet the production still delivers and the whole shebang is beautifully arranged. If you are a fan of the likes of St. Lucia, this one is definitely for you to have a listen to. My favourite part of this song has to be the sampled vocals that make up the main riff of the song. Not only is the riff really catchy, but it’s very well done. Hearing it just puts a smile on my face.
Ok Go – Interesting Drug
A spangly new alt-rock re-imagining of a Morrissey classic. I don’t think there’s much that needs be said about this one. It’s a damned catchy tune, that’s for certain. It would seem that the current political climate is encouraging artists to once again wear their politics on their sleeve and churn into action, John Lennon style. Politically charged music always gives interesting consequences, you only need to listen to the work of Roger Water of Pink Floyd fame to see that, and based on the political climate of the moment, there’s likely to be some interesting music coming soon to a Spotify near you.
Temporal Distortion – Laser Beams
A little bit of 80s synthwave bonus material for you. This one barely made it in, but it’s such a nice piece of music I couldn’t resist sneaking it in. If you want a good bit of instrumental nostalgia to perform some escapism this should do nicely. The carefully chosen textures do a lot to evoke that old pop sounds, and the well chosen samples are the icing on the overly synth-heavy cake.
That’s your lot for this month. All being well this should appear more or less on time this month. Please do join me again next month for a further smattering of melodic escapism. Until then, stay safe, and keep listening.