kamber, “west”

kamber, “west”

It’s all about moving on and letting go of the past for Kamber in her acoustic single, “West”. Recorded at Gnome Studios in Nashville, the indie artist finds closure over a heartbreak. Instead of dwelling on the past, there is a hopeful outlook for the future in the lyrics. Kamber is classically trained in piano and voice and is a band called Raviner, while pursuing solo work and teaching students in the studio. Her sound is influenced by an array of artists including Tori Amos, Chris Cornell and more. 

The level of vulnerability is at an extreme high, taking listeners through her process of coping with a loss in her life. The struggle gets easier as time goes on and as the song progresses, as most heartbreaks do. The biggest example of focusing on herself is with the lyrics:

All this time I held the key /
open door in front of me /
I never thought that you and I would bleed /
well it’s the first time I know that I can breathe

The Nashville-based indie singer is not afraid to lay it all on the line here and tell her truth. From being worn out and broken to wishing this person all the best, this person is moving West while Kamber is moving on. 

marlene oak, “sailing home”

marlene oak, “sailing home”

Today, captivating folk artist Marlene Oak releases her new track “Sailing Home.” With enticing, sprawling vocals, she seems to captivate us with a simple soundscape almost immediately. The way her “ooohs” almost seem to get momentarily caught in her throat, with the hitch of a rasp that is contagious as all get-out… mesmerizing. For someone with as magnetic a vocal range and beautiful a soul, we are surprised this is just our introduction to her catalog of work.

Spend a couple of minutes with this release. It’s going to bring your heart rate down and your soul connection way, way up.

ananya, “let there be love”

ananya, “let there be love”

“Let There Be Love” is the latest release for international, multi-platinum pop artist Ananya Birla. With over 300 million global streams since joining the scene in 2016, Ananya is a major force in the industry. She has opened for big names such as Coldplay and Wiz Khalifa and continues to scale the charts with her releases. Ananya is listed as a Forbes Woman to Watch, as she continues to build a great foundation for her career. 

The track “Let There Be Love” was recorded in Los Angeles during lockdown with Grammy-winning producer Aaron Pearce. It is an upbeat electro-pop anthem promoting the fact that beautiful things can come from dark times. The lyrics “Strong for your father / cry for your mother / love one another / pray for your brother / feel for your sister / why can’t we come together / let there be love” is her promoting this consistent message of unity. Ananya promotes joy and love through connections through her lyrics which coincides with her personal philanthropic work. She is an advocate for female empowerment and mental health and has worked with many organizations in the related fields. “Let There Be Love” is featured on Sirius XM Hits 1, making her the first Indian artist to feature on one of the largest pop radio shows in the United States. 

doctor imposter, “two times”

doctor imposter, “two times”

DOCTOR IMPOSTER is back with another single off her forthcoming record. “Two Times” (feat. Joie and GI Major) leans towards her hip-hop production style and is about women confidently flexing. Brooke C. Vettese came up with the idea for DOCTOR IMPOSTER when she was fed up with being treated differently in the industry. Over the past seven years she has been working to produce and make her own music non-stop. Teaming up with Joie and GI Major is a success for the Brooklyn-based producer, as she mentions on her Instagram

“Two Times” is fun and something to jam along with friends in the car. The three artists sound like they were meant to collaborate, especially on a victory lap themed song. With lyrics like, “I’m on top of this, my cockiness is massively appealing / This joint’s lit, feeling high as hell / kick my feet up on the ceiling”, it is easy to want to recreate the feeling and sing along. The track fits in with the themes in the album and is right before she wins the game, so it feels triumphant. DOCTOR IMPOSTOR’s album will be preceded by this single, so be sure to keep an eye out for more. 

alex lilly, “terrible person”

alex lilly, “terrible person”

Avant-pop temptress Alex Lilly’s single “Terrible Person” is a pulsating, mysterious gem that plays with subtlety both in the music and lyrics. The track is as elusive as Lilly herself, having been a part of several groups throughout her career, including the Buddhist punk band Zero Dezire, the harmonic quartet the Living Sisters, and touring with names like Lorde, Beck, and the bird and the bee. She characterizes her music as “sexy psychological thrillers,” drawing the description from her honeyed, suspicious tunes. “Terrible Person” starts out as one might expect, with Lilly singing “that would make you a really really terrible person. and make me the dumb one for having loved you,” implying a sense of clarity and empowerment. But the intricacies of the situation are revealed in a later verse when she sings “or wait am i just a really really terrible person just like you so i deserve you, come back,” showing that it’s never as simple as the earlier line may suggest. Behind her words is a muted beat that seems like it’s accelerating, and a perpetually rising melody which works together to create an understated feeling of urgency. Her voice rings out like a siren, compelling her listeners with off-kilter melody lines and interesting vocal inflections. Her last words are overtaken with distortion and the music embodies a bit of harshness to drive the message home.

Explains Lilly of the track:

If you’re like me, then you dwell on your breakup and wonder who was actually the guilty party in the relationship which is what ‘Terrible Person’ is about. You break up and then you look back and toss the blame around until you get exhausted. I came home one night drunk and angry, thinking about how my ex had screwed me over. But then I realized that I sucked too and I couldn’t decide who sucked more so I wrote these lyrics to help me decide. This was the last song we recorded. In fact I had to do it from my home studio and Barbara (Gruska) produced it from hers. The quarantine had just started. Barb was in constant contact with a family member who could not afford to get sick. I sent her my vocals and that arpeggiated track. And she did her magic.

by Nora Colie

the angry lisas, “wingwalkers”

the angry lisas, “wingwalkers”

The Angry Lisas shine a light on life’s heartbreaking realities and how crucial it is to learn to let them go in their impassioned and deeply genuine new video for their single “Wingwalkers.” Sean Taylor, the principal songwriter for the Portland-based indie-rock outfit, found that writing songs for the band’s upcoming album Slate Violet was the only way he could process and heal from the regret, nostalgia, gratitude, and sorrow that he collected over the last decade, or “cheap man’s therapy,” as he calls it. The album not only reflects on pain but the elation that comes from the release of pain, a release that manifests itself in catchy rock anthems that are zealous and sincere. It humbly reflects on some of the most challenging moments in Taylor’s twenties. As a part of this, “Wingwalkers” comes on the heels of Taylor’s big move away from home. Where he expected catharsis and a fresh beginning, he instead found a reflective familiarity. The idea that you can’t escape your problems, and that the only way to move on is to let go provides the foundation for the narrative of “Wingwalkers.”

The visuals and narrative of the video amplify the humility of the music by adding a layer of authenticity that can only come from watching someone else’s story. It follows two people, sometimes flashing back to their life and relationship as children, sometimes confronting the harsh reality of their life in the present. While the shots are ambiguous at first, details are slowly revealed about the situation, until the narrative reaches a burning climax. You feel your heart both warmed and broken as you watch, until the end practices what Taylor preaches about letting go. Enveloping this story are varied, down to earth guitar riffs that feel like a wordless echo of the preceding lyrics. The vocals are classic; soft, yet earnest. But “Wingwalkers” is only a taste of the emotional atlas that is Slate Violet, and the rolling drums at the end of the track remind us that this isn’t over, there are more challenges and revelations ahead.