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L.A. based duo DJDS (comprised of Same and Jerome) team up with R&B singer Dijon on the magical ‘Magic Loop. Serving as the first taste of music since they released their star-studded sophomore album ‘Big Wave More Fire’ which featured the likes of Amber Mark, Vic Mensa as well as COLORS alumni Marco McKinnis and Empress Of, ‘Magic Leap’ is delectable slice of electro-R&B. Whilst the song encompasses a slightly more mellow and softer sound compared to the pair’s more underground techno sounds, it shines just as bright with Dijon’s exceptional vocals accompanying the infectious “do do do”s that carry the track along.
Influenced by Flume, Mura Masa, Odesza and Mr. Carmack; young electronic producer Chrms (pronounced Charms) has been experimenting with design, film and music since he was nine. Not subjected to any genre, his productions mainly vary from indie dream pop to lush, ethereal, bass heavy electronic music. Garnering a secure hold within the independent music scene in India, his debut EP ‘Lover Boy’ takes one through the diverse genres that have been explored by this young producer. Bone Soda ft Rae is a smooth composition infused with distinctive synth elements making for a tune one can groove to on the dance floor. The contrast of the rap and the subtlety of the production makes for the perfect balance merging two different worlds together.
London based rapper, producer and BBC Sound of 2019 winner proves why he’s one of the most exciting voices around with the release of ‘Endorphins’. The twelve-track project, which follows up last year’s ‘Spaceman’ tape, is another brilliant showcase of Octavian’s unique flow and intriguing sound. With contributions from the likes of Jessie Ware, Skepta, Theophilus London, ABRA and more, ‘Endorphins’ is a trippy, melodious affair boasting the Londoner’s superb songwriting and raspy, calculated delivery.
Aiya are a Melbourne based duo comprised of Ayten + Felicity who create mesmerising electronic-led cuts that draw you in and enchant from start to finish. Since debuting with the glitchy and crisp atmospherics of ‘If I Could Get’ over four years ago, the pair have released just a handful of other tracks in the form of ‘Go’ and ‘Girl’. Marking Aiya’s return, is ‘Focus’, a moody and utterly captivating number which commands your undivided attention as the sparse electronics teeter in and out of the haunting vocals.
Having shared a handful of gorgeous acoustic demos on his SoundCloud over the past year or so, New York based singer/songwriter dhruv delivers his first studio single in the form of ‘double take’. Produced by fellow New Yorker frankis, the sparkling track features a sharp electronic, trap inspired soundbed which boasts a pounding bass which is topped off by dhruv’s exquisite vocal delivery. It serves as dhruv’s first. A brilliant debut offering, ‘double take’ is a dazzling introduction to dhruv’s artistry and according to his SoundCloud, there’s more new music on the way.
Swedish rap sensation Z.E. opens up his banger ’74 Bars’ with the fiery line “Tar inte klubbspelningar, bara festivaler” (no more club shows, only festivals), setting the scene wonderfully for his equally explosive flow. Z.E has been topping the Swedish music charts ever since the debut a little over two years ago. With the gift of eloquently incorporating his life experiences into the rapping, Z.E has reached out to every Scandinavian music lover from the upper North to the South.
On ’74 Bars’, Z.E. looks forwards, after touring around the country at different clubs, Z.E. sets his sights on playing for bigger crowds and festivals. The past months have seen the rapper flourish with a slew of unexpected releases, where each song has it’s special signature sound. Z.E is and will always be one of the top dogs of Swedish hip hop.
Urban ecologist, Aditi Veena aka Ditty gracefully transitions between spoken word and singing in her debut album ‘Poetry Ceylon’. Inspired by the natural world and people on the island of Sri Lanka, the album is an earthy, diverse and experimental journey of music that offers listeners an invitation to feel all that is beautiful and heart wrenching about being a human. There is a natural ease in her delivery of lyrics mainly written around her knowledge of the earth, of cities, of her own self and the ruin of nature coupled with melancholic vocals. The album is recorded by Shantanu Pandit and arranged by Dhruv Bhola who have added a touch of finesse to her captivating voice rendering an irresistible charm.
Hounslow,London based producer, singer and songwriter Grace Acladna shares an intoxicating new single in the form of ‘Apnea’, which is lifted from her newly released ‘Phonophobia’ EP. Since debuting her gorgeous single ‘London’ in 2015, the rising artist has continually impressed with her evolving soundscapes and poignant songwriting. That’s exactly the case ‘Apnea’, a somewhat delicate yet powerful offering which sees the singer’s sensual vocals glisten atop a murky electronic beat sprinkled with intricate piano progressions.
Originally from Kinshasa, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, but currently based in Johannesburg, South Africa, Grace-Attalie’s striking debut EP ‘Polluted’ is arguably one of the most intriguing and exciting things you’ll hear. Each of the project’s three brilliant and exploratory songs unravels and showcases a different layer to the singer/songwriter’s exceptional musicality – whether it’s the infectious melodies and unique vocal delivery on ‘Eggshell’ or the haunting atmospherics on ‘Sombre Storm’, Grace-Attalie keeps you on your toes from start to finish.
Toronto based artist Eva Tolkin aka EVA shares ‘CRY’, a glorious standalone single that serves as the follow up to her Danny L Harle produced single ‘Touch Me’ and is the pop anthem you didn’t know you needed. Although the track doesn’t appear on her forthcoming EP, it’s irresistibly vibrant atmospherics and fun pop sensibilities are unquestionable infectious with EVA’s bright vocals wonderfully complimenting the club-ready instrumentation. It’s going to make you want to dance, cry, or perhaps even both!
Dive into the icy instrumentation that soundtracks ‘With You’, the delectable debut single from new Danish duo Soon. Comprised of August and Andreas, the pair who cite the likes of Kelela, The Weeknd and The Internet as influences, intertwine breezy atmospherics with equally cool and relaxing vocals. ‘With You’ serves as a wonderful introduction to the duo’s sound, setting the scene wonderfully for what’s to come.
New York based artist Raveena’s music has a way of entering and soothing every sinew of your soul. Over the past few years, the rising singer/songwriter (alongside long-time collaborator and producer Everett Orr) has crafted a sound that enlightens and heals with each word, note, beat. The culmination of this craft, is ‘Lucid’, Raveena’s mesmerising and utterly enchanting debut album. A torch bearer for South Asian artists, Raveena touches on everything from identity and sexuality to immigration and family – narrating personal experiences that resonate beautifully over the album’s twelve tracks.
After seven years, London based singer, songwriter and producer Jai Paul breaks his silence with the release of double B-side singles ‘Do You Love Her Now’ and ‘He’ along with a brand new website. On the former, Paul is joined by Paul Institute artist Fabiana Palladino, whose sparkling voice wonderfully compliments Paul’s endearing tones to float over the soothing and sombre atmospherics. The latter, is a triumphant slice of summery groove-inflected pop that packs a punch as Paul’s falsetto-laden, MJ-esque vocals glide through.
Following her dazzling new album ‘El Mal Querer’ last year, Spanish flamenco-pop sensation ROSALÍA marks the one year anniversary of breakthrough single ‘Malamente’ with ‘Aute Cuture’. Written alongside long-time collaborator El Guincho and author Leticia Sala, the track is another blistering explosion of vibrant electronic bursts backed up by the singer’s infectious and energising vocals.
Having released her hauntingly beautiful debut EP ‘CODEPENDENCY’ last year, Chicago based singer, songwriter and producer Rachel Faith shares the equally arresting ‘Phantom’. Premiering at COLORS, the track is accompanied by a glitchy, animated visual by Megan McGuire, Henrique Migue and Alex Koester, the tense and utterly captivating single titillates between ferocity and fragility. The production by frequent collaborator Elias Abid (Appleby) creates a dark and moody atmosphere, one that’s only heightened by Faith’s smoky yet silky vocals.
Hailing from Croydon, London, rising singer/songwriter Rachel Chinouriri delivers another stunning new single in the form of ‘Mama’s Boy’. Following previously released singles ‘Adrenaline’, ‘Riptide’, ‘So My Darling’ and debut single ‘What Have I Ever Done’, the new offering boasts a fragrant and delightfully cheery atmosphere. The jazz-inflected instrumentation coupled with Chinouriri’s bold vocals and honest songwriting will put a smile on your face and serve as the perfect soundtrack to the summer.
Having completed their trilogy of EP’s last year, New Zealand outfit Yumi Zouma have shared a brilliant new standalone single in the form of ‘Bruise’. The club-ready track is a slight change of direction from the indie-pop trio’s signature sound, yet those pop nuances we’ve come to love and adore remain stronger than ever. The infectious melodies and soothing tones of vocalist Christie Simpson add a soft and hazy touch to the electronic-led production propelling the track forwards.
There’s something magical and utterly enchanting about the latest single from rising German artist FLØRE. Behind the eerie and almost whimsical soundscape of ‘Little Dancing Demons’, lies a more powerful and heartfelt message. The song is “about embracing the deep sadness [of living with depression] and accepting the world as a permanent dark place“. Despite this, FLØRE’s comforting and touching voice makes it easier with each note, line, verse.
Founder of the Foufoune Palace collective, French based artist Luidji has shared his highly anticipated debut album titled ‘Tristesse Business: Saison 1’. Comprised of seventeen deep and introspective tracks which serve as the follow up to 2015’s ‘Mécanique des fluides’, the record is another insight into the artist’s groovy sounds that touch on love and difficult relationships. To mirror his evolution, the Parisian rapper imagines a character drowning into water and trying get his head out of it. As suggested by the siren lying by the rapper’s side on the album’s cover, an aquatic universe is hypnotising listeners’ ears from start to finish.
Loud, the MC from Montreal reveals a very convincing and faithful piece in the form of ‘Médalilles’ where his melancholic intonations are accompanied by sharp punchlines. Now that the excitement of the beginnings has passed, the young man seems quite overwhelmed, almost already exhausted by the world and events that now surround him. Loud returns this year with a brand new album that allows him to further serve as the ambassador of French-speaking Canadian rap status. The successor to the unmissable ‘Une année record’ is named ‘Tout ça pour ça’ and will be released on May 24th.