Indiana-based self-proclaimed “psychedelic Motown” act Diane Coffee released their full-length Internet Arms today, and we’re swooning. From the very first, glittering notes of “Not Ready To Go”, we’re drawn in, carrying us through the slightly quicker tempo of “Like A Child Does” and into the slowdown of instrumental intro “The Look”. The fourth track remains at that slow pace, landing us in a neon trance while “Stuck In Your Saturday Night”.
It’s at this point that we recognize not only Diane Coffee’s palpable influence from The King of Pop, but there is a tad bit of Chromeo peeking through that seems to amplify the lyrics. While “Simulation” is one of our favorite tracks on the album, the title track definitely takes a more disco-like approach to its soundscape. “War” is another quick, swirling instrumental, leading into “Doubt”, which seems to be the most modern, intricate track of the bunch so far and a perfect staple for your latest playlist.
“Work It” is a new anthem for those reaching for their dreams, perfectly displaying the vocal range and attitude of this act. And while “Good Luck” slows it all down again, it is with “Lights Off” that we go deeper sonically, swapping the 80s synth for a more modern, dance hall beat. “Turn On” is a short instrumental, and sounds like you’re turning on a pretty complicated machine or robot. Though we agree with the inclusion of this quick transition, we think it’s better placed elsewhere – perhaps at the very beginning of the album -, as it then leads into the very slow, gorgeous “Company Man”. Once again, this track could easily have been placed in any one of our favorite 80’s movies, and therefore is the perfect way to round out such a wonderfully influenced and lyrically nuanced album.
Keep up with Diane Coffee here.
Brooklyn-based Son of Cloud released his self-titled full-length, a 10-track album that seems to mellifluously solve the world’s problems. We know that’s a strong claim, but if you even start to take a listen to first track “How to Love You Today”, you will absolutely melt. Admitting that he’s learning from the start is the most incredible way to stir up empathy, and even without the conscientious and gorgeous lyrics he provides, the listener is immediately enthralled by his vocals.
And if you think all of the beauty lies in that first track, you’re in for a true treat. The album in its entirety is a soothing, entrancing work of art, riddled with self realizations and honest, heartfelt emotions. Tracks like “Who Could Ask For More?” and “I Am Not An Island” are thrown in with slightly more twang than the rest, as tracks like “Parade” and “I Love You More” infuse more of a soulful, robust sound into the equation.
We could go on at length about this album, but are truly so enveloped in the reality of it that we just think it’s pertinent for you – for anyone – to hear it. We want you to experience the magic that flows from this work, and to enlighten us with your thoughts on it as well! Take a listen below when you’re ready to slow things down a bit.
Keep up with Son of Cloud here.
On Friday, singer/songwriter duo doubleVee – comprised of Allan & Barb Vest – released a new 5-track EP, titled Songs for Birds and Bats. From the initial lines of first track “Map the Channels” – which establishes the energy of the release – through the even more fast paced and staccato-driven “Ladder for the People”, you get the gist that this musical act just does not quit. “Goldstar Redux” begins very layered, and then simplifies as it builds up the vocals.
If you haven’t had the pleasure of witnessing doubleVee until now, you get a sense by that third track that they could create music together in their sleep. The theatrical soundscape alone of “Goldstar Redux” brings you into an invigorating space, driven by the couples’ chemistry, going strong musically since 2012. “Goldstar Redux” explodes into a cacophony of sound before layering into “Landlord of the Flies”, a title which is another nod to “gold” — however, this time it’s more Golding than anything. The duo artfully completes the EP with “Last Castaways”, a twinkling and optimistic soundscape that will keep us reeling this spring.
Keep up with doubleVee here.
The musical duo Mrs. Greenbird have created a deeply soulful sound with lyrics to match in their latest album Dark Waters. The folksy harmonies of Steffen Brückner paired with Sarah Nücken’s unique voice are what makes this a truly beautiful record. It’s reminiscent of another duo’s sound — Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová of The Swell Season and Once fame. While Mrs. Greenbird has a similar aesthetic, they manage to create something that is entirely their own. Their voices, along with the gentle guitar and melancholic lyrics, result in the kind of music that is brutally honest as well as poetic.
The album is quite well-rounded in terms of theme. The darker, more cynical sides of life and love are highlighted in songs such as “Careless Heart,” “1965,” and title track “Dark Waters,” while others like “One Day in June” and “Learn How To Love You” are more idealistic and romantic. One of the stand out songs is called “The Simple Things.” While every song is hauntingly beautiful, something about this particular one struck a chord in me. It’s about experiencing loss and trying to find yourself afterwards, how we tend to forget the pleasure of simple things in life.
Dark Waters is a feat of folk indie pop with a hint of country and a splash of blues, yet it works to form a great record. It’s perfect for almost any mood — a scenic walk, a long drive, a rainy day, a time to let out a much-needed cry.
Be sure to check out their latest album on April 12th, and keep up with the latest on Mrs. Greenbird here.
Philadelphia-based MiNKA – comprised of Ari “Dick” Rubin and friends – releases their brand new 7-track collection titled Reincarnation today. “Dark” starts us all off with a slow, entrancing soundscape, leading into the quirky and far more vibrant “Rain”. Third track “Gone” has a feeling of desperation dripping from its instrumentals, a slightly more theatrical soundscape than its predecessor, while “Dawn” brings guitar chords that will truly invigorate you.
Once you put into perspective that Reincarnation is MiNKA’s updated interpretation of notable 19th century vocal pieces by Schubert, Schumann, and Strauss, things start to make that much more sense. As the third and final chapter in a string of 2019 releases, it feels like a notable and beautiful way to round everything out. The simplicity of the song titles – each track is a single word, the majority existing at four letters and one syllable – is refreshing, and helps to bring the listener back to the songs’ original intent. With the final additions of “Hope”, “Hours”, and “Sirens”, MiNKA has provided us a well thought out, entrancing performance that we won’t soon forget.
Keep up with MiNKA here.
With the single “Spelling Lessons” garnering over 15k plays on SoundCloud, artist Birch is ready to take the indie pop landscape by storm with her debut album. She has been making noise in the Brooklyn music scene for a couple years now, but the NYC-based feminist is ready to break out nationally. Producing, songwriting, and singing come naturally to Birch, something that is rarely said about any artist these days.
With echoing vocals and the perfect amount of synth, Birch is able to hone her indie pop sound over the course of the nine track record. femme.one is full of impact statements that are motivated by the feminist movement. As stated on her website, Birch is “Incredibly motivated by raising the female voice in society, Birch brands her music as feminist synth-pop. Female empowerment and gender equality are two causes very important to Birch. She often participates in marches, donates to Planned Parenthood, and strives to use her platform to make a difference.” With this being said, Birch’s music is not only for those who believe in these righteous causes, but also for those who truly enjoy indie pop. It is for those who may not necessarily know how to express themselves. Also, it is for those who may not want to share their incredible talents with the world, similar to how Birch was early in her music career.
femme.one comes to us at the perfect time. When activism and controversy are at the forefront of our society, Birch stands out as an artist who stands for what she believes in, expressing it through beautiful music. Birch is of a dying breed, artists who will not conform for stardom, but she might just get that for being herself.
You can listen keep up with Birch at her website http://www.birchmusicnyc.com/.