That striking moment when you find a song that stops you in your tracks, hits you to your core and makes you listen to every word and note, that’s the effect that Isaac Gracie’s song ‘Last Words’ has. Isaac is a singer songwriter from London and with only one song released on soundcloud in the summer of 2015 is making a big impact, gaining media attention when DJ Zane Lowe named it his World Record on Beats 1.
‘Last Words’ has a rock-grunge sound and the track’s unmastered acoustic and vocals are very effective. The elevated backing vocals are perfectly placed and add emphasis to the despair and nostalgic atmosphere created in the song. This song has a very raw feel showing us a vulnerable side with striking lyrics ‘Cocaine in your eyes and bullets in your gun,’N’ blood in your nails is scratching for the faith’ this song grabs your attention and fills you with emotion.
You can watch Isaac Gracie perform ‘Terrified’ and ‘Running On Empty’ at Maida Vale for BBC Music Introducing on youtube. These songs again are brilliantly written and preformed. Isaac has a Jeff Buckley rasp to his voice which is so effective and flawlessly expresses his passion.’Terrified’ again strikes a chord as its a lovely heart on your sleeve track and Isaac performs with intense emotion that gives you goosebumps. ‘Running On Empty’ is a faster paced powerful song. Isaac shows of a higher range vocal in the chorus.
Isaac’s new EP is due to be released next week and ‘Terrified’ will be a track on it, it’s set to be a promising EP and I for one am really excited to hear the rest of the tracks.
Stream ‘Last Words’ and watch ‘ Running On Empty’ below
Beautiful Corruption are a four piece alt-rock band based in Kilkenny, Ireland. The band consists of Oisin Wolfe on lead vocals and rhythm guitar, James Brown on lead guitar and back-up vocals, Simon Cooke on drums and Rory Cooper on bass.
Their début EP was released on the 14th of February 2015 and is a strong collection of tracks that show the bands growing talents and potential. The EP starts strong with ‘Leather’ a fast passed solid rock song with catchy riff on bass and strong vocals. Followed by ‘ Snakes and Ladders’ again another strong riff based song with punchy drums and full sound. ‘ The Wait’ shows us more guitar skill throughout the song with a shredding guitar solo which is just kick ass.’The Hench’ has a slow intro until the drum kicks in bringing the tempo up again. The final track on the EP is ‘Dilate’ with an infectious guitar hook, again guitar is definitely a strong feature in this band as they slide into a cool slick guitar solo to the end.
I had the pleasure of seeing this band live in Cyprus Avenue in Cork the other day and my thoughts of this talented band were confirmed as they performed with such confidence and swagger while maintaining a tight sound and without compromising on the vocals. ‘Beautiful Corruption’ are a band that you have to see live to really appreciate their talent. Their high energy show had the whole venue forming a mosh pit just as the band came off stage into the crowd and began playing and jumping amongst them.
Stream ‘Snakes and Ladders’ below
Inkfields was formed in Australia, 2012 by Brit Singer-Songwriter Sam James-Griffiths, but has appeared in band-form from time to time. Inkfields is most often a solo act that crosses indie, rock, pop and electronic. Sam James-Griffiths is a multi instrumentalist from Edinburgh he has mastered guitar, piano, bass, drums.
The first official record from Inkfields was titled ‘Paperless Book’, and was recorded and released in Sweden, in 2015. This 5 track EP is a beautiful arrangement of light ambient songs where the electric guitar and vocals are most prominent. The EP as a whole is relaxing and has the power to put you at ease and create a peaceful atmosphere while subtly showing off Sams guitar skills.
His EP ‘You forgot the roots’ was recorded in Germany and released February this year and is a compilation of well composed tracks as Sam displays his instrumental talent with bluesy style piano and guitar and deep lyrics. Each track is so easy to listen to and beautifully arranged and melodic with strong beats and soft piano,perfect for summer evenings.
Summer 2016 will see a third EP to be released. It will be recorded in a studio in Wales and as of yet, the title and launch date are not known. I for one will look forward to hearing more from Inkfields.
Stream ‘Take My Card’ Below
The Curious Incident are a pop/rock band with a Caribbean Twist. This four- piece based in London released their EP ‘ Penny Lonesome’ in 2015 full of bright upbeat songs.They experiment with a variety of genres but the Caribbean influence is prominent throughout.
On my first listen to this band two songs in particular stood out for me the first is ‘Money’ it is an energetic song with a bouncy rhythm and is cleverly written about the universal theme money, or lack of. They use the lyrics of some of the modern artists Aloe Blacc and Sam Smith ‘Aleo Blacc He told me that ,He needs just a dollar to get by’ its a fun track with a Bob Marley feel mixed with a bit of Vampire Weekend. With added ‘la la la la’ parts and ‘hey hey’ shouts that make this song easy to sing along to after just one listen.
‘Diane’ was the second song I loved, about a cheeky youthful flirtation its a smooth easy to listen to pop track with steady foot tapping rhythm. ‘The Hunt’ follows with a more electronic sound while still holding their Caribbean style and pop bounce.
‘Penny Lonesome’ is a delightful EP and I’m glad I received a message to have a listen to this talented band as they show serious talent by fusing amazing genres together and making it sound so blissful.
They are set to play a few gigs this spring you can catch them at The Cellar (Finborough Arms) – London on 26 th March if your around go see them you wont regret it!
Stream ‘Money’ and ‘Diane’ Below
Our Worth a listen track this week comes from The Jackobins
The Jackobins are a 5-piece band from Liverpool formed in 2014. With a debut EP, Ghosts, and single ‘Waiting on the Sun’ Their latest single which came out early this year ‘One More Chance’ is a proper upbeat anthem everything about this song makes you want to get up and dance. This is a band who knows exactly what to do to liven up any crowd. This song is full of punchy beats with lively guitar riffs that all build as the song progresses. With lyrics about living life and being free. The simple but effective chorus “One more chance! You know you’ll never know…” is repeated to a high energy fist pump note.
This track is extremely well written almost with the live shows in mind as you can imagine the whole crowd shouting the chorus at the top of their lungs as they dance to this high spirited, enthusiastic anthem of freedom.
Stream “one More Chance” below
The band getting everyone excited about the future of guitar music is Public Access T.V. John Eatherly (lead vocals, guitar), Xan Aird (lead guitar, vocals), Max Peebles (bass, vocals) and Pete Star (drums, vocals) are an American band formed in New York City in 2014.
So far they have released an EP and a few infectious singles that will have you singing along and attempting air guitar when no one is looking. With a rock, punk style with 70s influences they have a large range of slick guitar riffs, fantastic hooks and catchy chorus’ that are just simply infectious.
I found them first on soundcloud and became completely swallowed up by the smooth easy rhythm and sunny vibes of “In The Mirror” The cheeky quick wit of the lyrics and vocal melody had me hooked in seconds and introduced me to their pop punk 70s feel good sound
‘Patti Peru’ released in 2015 has a gritty sound and atmosphere with the open line ” I was Ready to Die” giving an image of a desperate person. This is conveyed to us by John Eatherlys shouty/growl style of singing and screechy guitars while still maintaining their pop punk bouncy style. This song is full of swagger and oozes confidence.
“On Location” is a summer high energy middle finger to the world anthem. Where John tell us to ” do what you want to do” The whole song seems to build both in energy and tone with loud guitars and drums while still holding a sunny Californian vibe up to its climax as Johns vocals progress to a gritty end.
This band ooze confidence with songs about having fun, being rebellious with catchy anthems, quick witted lyrics, punchy drums and remarkable guitar hooks.
Their 5 track EP ‘Public Access T.V.’ was released this year and is full of hazy sunshine tunes. ‘Metropolis’ Is a old school rock song that is not as fast paced and punchy as their previous songs.It’s got a cooler vibe with a more polished sound. However the bridge change and guitar solo towards the end livens up the track giving it their garage rock stamp. The lyrics “I don’t wanna live in California / I’d take New York any day” shows us their rebellion towards the mainstream.
‘All We Want’ gives us that lazy sunny afternoon drive song and is my favourite track on the EP The guitar is a strong feature in this track with light accompaniment of drums, soft vocals and harmonies.It’s a very smooth easy going track, almost romantic, which is very different from what we are used to listening to from Public Access T.V. but its shows us how versatile they are.
‘Loose Ends’ follows again with a groovy vibe , smooth sound and upbeat rhythm and positive lyrics with the addition of a piano which freshens up the song and again shows off their compositional talent.’ Honey ‘ goes back to their 70s sound with a free spirit feel.The final track on their EP is ‘Tracy’, again a smooth song with light instrumental and a Beatles ‘Sergeant Peppers’ feel.
This band have a promising future and I will look forward to hearing more from them.
Stream ” Patti Peru” and ” Metropolis ” below
Our worth a listen track this week comes from Little Grim a four Piece band from London their single ‘ Vice’ is a dark ambient track with an intoxicating psychedelic feel. The strong bass line and guitar riff draws you into every beat and note played right up to the climax, where it becomes more grungy to make you automatically mosh until it descends into a trance finish. The Hook pulls you into a story of strong rumbling emotions while the falsetto backing vocals seems to call to you back like a haunting conscience
This band have a tight sound and a bright future ahead hope to hear more from them in 2016
Stream ‘Vice’ Below
Palmas are from Philadelphia, New York City, United States with an indie – surfer sound and killer vocals. Band members Eric Camarota ( guitarist) , Matthew Young (guitarist) , Adam Cantiello ( guitarist), Pat Degan (drummer), Kurt Cain (vocalist), have created the perfect summer sound with catchy tunes and sweet melodic riffs. One listen and you will be transported back to the sunny idealistic 60s with a modern twist.
My first introduction to Palmas was through their song ” You Were My Girl” a lovely smooth waltz- like song with a Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons feel with tight harmonies . This song definitely gives the romantic summer night slow dance feel.The melancholy lyrics relates to everyone at some point in their lives and gives a nostalgic ambiance. Their track “Stay Away ” gives a darker mysterious tone to their sound, with strong guitar and more prominent drum beat bringing in a more rock influence with catchy lyrics. Another favourite of mine is ” Ride The Wave” its 50s rock and roll sound with a Chuck Berry ” Johnny Be Good” feel is ridiculously infectious and can brighten up any day.
On the first track from their debut EP ” To The Valley”, “I Want To Know (Your Love).” Palmas show off their surf – rock sound with vocals that parallel with the percussion and guitar riffs seamlessly intertwined with a catchy melody and remarkable chorus. Each song follows its predecessor with ease, finishing with “San Francisco Bay” this is a sweet track that will have you singing along in no time and wishing you could go on holidays right now. This 6 track EP is a must listen, perfect for those summer vibes. I personally find it extremely difficult to pick a favourite song as I love them all and can listen to them all day.
Stream ” I wanna Know” ” Stay away” and ” Ride The Wave” below.
The Fontaines, consisting of brother-sister duo, Charlotte and Hank Fontaine, from Los Angeles have created a sweet timeless ‘New Whop’ sound. With swinging bopping 50s references
Their debut EP ‘The Fontaines’ which was released in 2015, consists of 5 tracks some of which are cleverly named after 1950s and 1960s icons, the first being ‘Paul Newman’ which is a fun swinging track with all the traits of a 50s song with clever lyrics that keep you smiling and singing along throughout. Charlotte sings this track particularly sweetly and yet confidently giving a candy floss sound with some sass.
“Dusty Springfield,” named after the English pop singer of the same era is again a lovely track with a swoony melody, swing like beats and an insanely catchy chorus.” Charlotte Fontaine” follows in a rhythm and blues style with a steady beat and smooth vocal harmony as backing vocals sing the word “ahh” while Charlotte sings the chorus in a lower tone than we hear her sing in the other tracks. This contrast is very effective here and gives a sombre tone to the song.
The classic American Actor, “Dustin Hoffman,” follows next, this song shows us another side to The Fontaines with a fuller band and surf rock sound making good use of the drums and guitars. With humorous clever lyrics and catchy melody sung with a strong vocal Charlotte shows off the control she has over her voice as she varies from a soft vocal to more powerful with even a slight grit in her voice at times.
“Cate Blanchett’ named after the actress,is the final track on the EP. This song has perhaps the most variety instrumentally and vocally as it begins very stripped back with soft vocals and light simple accompaniment and builds into more prominent guitar and drums throughout the song. Its perfect to finish off their EP as it leaves you wanting more.
These tracks are easy to listen to, light, fluffy, cleverly written and composed songs with a dreamy swoon feel and a hint of sass I can’t wait to hear more from ‘The Fontaines’
Stream ” Dusty Springfield” and ” Paul Newman” below