jon hill, “human”

jon hill, “human”

Indie pop artist Jon Hill is dropping his new single “Human” today from Broken Record Co. Featuring as the title track on his upcoming EP, this emotional yet simplistic track offers relief from the demons behind our eyelids and allows us to not feel so alone for a while. Opening the track with piano chords instantly places the listener in the world of Hill and sets the stage for the addition of an electronic bass beat around the 20-second mark pushing the song forward toward the rest of the track. Stacatto style singing during the bridge breaks up the smooth and flowing chorus to provide added emphasis on the message of the song and Hill’s dreamy voice folds the listener within its velvety grasp. Keeping the lyrics to a minimum, Hill allows the listener to get lost in the song instead of their head. From the opening piano to the closing beats, this song is an emotional ride that shines a light on the struggles we all face being human, reminding us it’s okay to not be perfect. 

Be sure to check out this wonderful new song and give Hill a follow on social media such as Instagram.

naah, “electric life”

naah, “electric life”

The newest single from Swedish singer/songwriter Naah and producer C. Gold, titled “Electric Life”, features sparkling melodies that are mellow, bubbly, and counter-intuitive. But, while the track’s sonic mood is neutral or even optimistic, the lyrics give way to the contemporary lament of many across generations: “Electric Life” mourns a decline in meaningful social interactions caused by constant distractions from ever-present smartphones. This theme of sounding happy despite experiencing discontent, paired with bouncy synth-pop, draws musical reference to Paramore’s After Laughter, perhaps crossed with the vocal stylings of HAIM.

The track opens to the sound of a record needle being set into place, in longing for the days preceding digital streaming. A distorted electric guitar twangs sparingly, a kick drum thumps reassuringly, and floaty synth glides behind Naah’s smooth alto, building calculated suspense before breaking into the glittery, full-bodied chorus: “You can try not to care / But I’m missing human eye contact / Can you Google that? / I’m tired of electric life”. On the word “life”, Naah’s glossy vocals send the song soaring into an open sky of glitchy playfulness, each syllable mimicking the familiar sounds of electro-pop production.

In the second half of the song, Naah makes a point that feels familiar to Millenials and Gen Zs alike. Since the conception of the smartphone and social media, people from these age demographics have heard the tireless criticism of communication technology from their elders. In “Electric Life”, Naah defends the stance of younger people while still acknowledging the burden of facing the world as it exists in the modern 21st century. She sings, “Hold on, let’s get back to where they come from / They say we’re sad because of the digital / But the world wasn’t this messed up when they grew up / It’s not the same for us.”

“Electric Life” is the kind of thought-provoking bop the world could use a few more of. Here’s to Naah and C. Gold for calling it like it is.

Follow Naah here and keep up with C. Gold here.

my little hum, “one of a kind”

my little hum, “one of a kind”

Oakland based husband and wife duo My Little Hum are back with their sophomore album Pioneer featuring the track, “One of a Kind” where the music is as free and innovative as the lyrics. Sounding like a female powerhouse band thriving on chaotic harmonies the electric beat captivates listeners reminding them of how they are as unique as the song itself. With the feel of an oldies rock song, you’ll have visions of hippies funkily dressed dancing through your mind in no time. 

Inspired by guest band member Dan Jewett’s late father, “One of a Kind” has strong emotional ties for the band allowing their creative personalities to be felt throughout the entire track such as the harsh chomp of the guitar and hectic keyboard solo. Perfect for fans of Television, The Lemon Twigs, or The Sundays, My Little Hum continues to bring the power pop vibrations in not only “One of a Kind” but also their upcoming new album Pioneer produced by Mystery Lawn Music, set to be released on October 18, 2019.

Be sure to keep up with My Little Hum here.

marian hill, “take a number”

marian hill, “take a number”

Philadelphia duo Marian Hill returns with a new single that’s as seductive as it is sinister. “Take A Number” is marked by blasting bass, intermittent trap beats, and electronic elements; its strategically sparse musicality contrasting vocalist Samantha Gongol’s haunting near-whispers.

The lyrics of “Take A Number” are tempting, teasing, and smug; not unlike a predator confident in its success before even making a move. Gongol applies pressure to her subject: “I think I know what you’re thinking, how is it you look so fine? / In this room we keep shrinking, closing in while I take my time.” One line that aggregates the elements of curiosity, indifference, and an insatiable hunger found in Take A Number” recurs with each chorus: “You taste like a chance that I just might take.”

We know Gongol’s crisp vocals well, from past Marian Hill classics like “Down” and “One Time”, and they launch in the first second of the song without delay. The feature from fresh-faced, alt-R&B artist Dounia early on in this new track provides a satisfying shift in pace and texture; as she raps in an airy flutter that is no less insistent: “You got moves, you got bags, you got shit you gotta do / He’s a moment at the most, he’s not something to pursue.”

Keep up with Marian Hill here. Follow Dounia here.

boy in space + unheard, “cold”

boy in space + unheard, “cold”

Set to release on August 8, “Cold” by Boy in Space is a great new R&B track that packs a mighty punch in the depth of its lyrics. With opening sounds reminiscent of a lullaby, this song will launch you deep into your feelings, “Both you and me no we gotta let it go/ Laying on the ground wondering why it’s so cold”. Deeply questioning the problems in a relationship, there is something we can all relate to with this track. 

For fans of Fletcher, SHY Martin, or Chelsea Cutler there is a lot to look forward to here with Boy in Space. His R&B meets pop culture sound will have him on the up and up for many years to come, so be sure to keep up with him here.

james delaney, “live it up”

james delaney, “live it up”

“Live It Up”, the newest single from LA up-and-comer James Delaney, opens to the playful bounce of a video-game bop and a twinkling tropicality – but don’t let that fool you. A closer listen reveals an ennui that borders on ironic.

To clue you in, the very first lyrics paint a picture of a certain brand of indulgence that feels very 2019: “We’ve been wasting time getting high and watching shitty tv shows / Feeling comatose in our dirty clothes.” Split right down the middle, the lyrical content of “Live It Up” resorts to indulgence and lethargy to escape life stress; while sonically, it’s neutrally cheery – a notion that is paralleled in the song’s structure, as the verses bear the weight of Delaney’s approach. Radiating synth and an unchanging mellow tempo meet Delaney’s clear-cut chorus, ringing with a might-as-well attitude: “Live it up, live it up, live it up.” The last few bars close out on a sax solo, whose hum suggests that Delaney is already off to follow his own advice.

Keep up with James Delaney here.