inspiration | joe barksdale

inspiration | joe barksdale

The playlist is a list of songs that inspired all of the music that i will release this year. It also give people a look into where i am trying to go with my music. There are also some songs in this playlist that I cover live and will be releasing covers of this year. Take a step into my world of musical influences and inspiration.

yumi zouma, truth or consequences

yumi zouma, truth or consequences

Indie pop wizards Yumi Zouma’s highly-anticipated new album, Truth or Consequences, was released today via Polyvinyl Record Co. Produced by Yumi Zouma themselves with mixing by Jake Aron (Solange, Snail Mail), TOC is chock-full of contemplation, duality, and the hard truth wrapped in a soft blanket.

The album is the group’s third but the first at their new label home at Polyvinyl Records. The narratives? Heartbreak (both platonic and romantic), emotional distance (both real and imagined), disillusionment, and being out of reach, and while there are rarely definitive answers to any of these tough subjects, there’s an undeniable release that comes from speaking your truth (even if it’s just to yourself).

Lead single “Right Track / Wrong Man” hits YZ’s sweet spot, giving listeners that trademark dancing-through-a-dream, shimmering sound that they seem to deliver so consistently and with such ease. Synths bubble behind Burgess and Simpson as they weave their way through smooth-toned beats with their sweet and feathery vocal blend. According to front woman Christie Simpson, the song stems from “a place of uncertainty- of not knowing if you should stay in a slightly unfulfilling relationship, or branch out and make the most of the youth you have left”, a problem that many young people feel burdened with after having spent a considerable chunk of their fleeting time be young with one person. Simpson talks about this track better than anyone else could, finishing the statement with a sentence that could serve as their slogan; “This is our dance floor anthem to the confusion of living through your twenties.”

“Lonely After” is a dream pop riddle of self-discovery. The contemplative opening track somehow manages to be a sparkling ode to pop while feeling as though it’s enveloped in a cloud, unbelievably soft and blurry around the edges in the most satisfying way. It floats across the auditory senses, pulling listeners in to get wrapped in the blanket of indie dream-pop comfort that is Truth or Consequences.

“Southwark” dances across twinkly piano melodies and breathy vocals. “Sage” steps off the white and fluffy clouds that Yumi Zouma exists in and floats into the starry night sky, delicately monotonous vocals over a driving synth-beat feeling like the soundtrack to late night drives and contemplation.

“Cool for a Second” is a lyrically sharp bright spot of synth pop that almost never happened. Bassist Charlie Ryder gave some background on the album centerpiece in a statement. “The song was demoed in Los Angeles and then long forgotten, destined for the scrap heap. A spark of inspiration from Josh in the introduction reestablished that for us, the most conspicuous of melodies are often hidden in modest beginnings.” It touches on isolation and the ensuing fallout in a letter to the past, and provides YZ fans with another one of those your-twenties-are-confusing-as-hell dance floor anthems that most lost souls in that time of their life could desperately use. Look no further, 20-29 year olds, we have the music for you!

Yumi Zouma has a talent for shielding hard truths with soft tones, providing glimpses into lucid romanticism across a dreamscape of dance-able beats and poignant lyricism. Truth or Consequences is a testament to the success of the band’s approach – a united body of melody that mines the spaces in between.

Yumi Zouma’s Truth of Consequences is out March 13th via Polyvinyl Records.

YUMI ZOUMA TOUR DATES
03/07 – London, UK @ Rough Trade East (In-Store)
03/10 – London, UK @ Moth Club [SOLD OUT]
03/12 – Washington, DC @ DC9 # [SOLD OUT]
03/13 – Brooklyn, NY @ Baby’s All Right # [SOLD OUT]
03/14 – Philadelphia, PA @ Boot & Saddle # [SOLD OUT]
03/18 – Austin, TX @ The Parish [SXSW]
03/19 – Austin, TX @ Seven Grand & Las Perlas [SXSW]*
03/19 – Austin, TX @ Banger’s [SXSW]
03/20 – McAllen, TX @ Cine El Rey @ DREAMS
03/21 – Dallas, TX @ Blue Light @ NSFWknd
03/24 – San Francisco, CA @ Rickshaw Stop #
03/26 – Los Angeles, CA @ Moroccan Lounge # [SOLD OUT]
03/27 – Los Angeles, CA @ Moroccan Lounge # [SOLD OUT]
03/28 – Boise, ID @ El Korah Shrine @ Treefort Music Festival
03/29 – Boise, ID @ Treefort Music Festival – Main Stage
# w/ Magdalena Bay
* DJ set

aj mitchell, “spring break” ft. rich the kid

aj mitchell, “spring break” ft. rich the kid

AJ Mitchell releases his newest track “Spring Break” featuring Rich the Kid. Off his upcoming debut album Skyview, the track showcases everything that works in a pop/R&B song, with a catchy chorus and verses listeners can’t help but move to.

A music video was released alongside the single, featuring both artists. Bright colors, incredible video quality, and warm weather scenes make us all crave a spring break adventure. Hopefully recent world events haven’t completely derailed your person spring break plans, but if they have, this video will breathe some fresh air into your staycation!

Mitchell is already among the top 500 Spotify artists with 8 million monthly listeners. His upcoming album release is sure to make him one of 2020’s breakout pop/R&B artists.

by: meredith schneider + kendal chandler

roch, via media

roch, via media

Today, London-based singer-songwriter Kate Miller — under the moniker ROCH — releases her debut album Via Media. (ROCH comes from the name of patron saint St. Roch. This saint-like poise is incorporated into her music.) This record is defined by space – in the atmospheric feel of the music and the lyrical content of sense of place. Sonically, listeners feel as if they are floating into open space, but the emotional factor of Miller’s voice keeps them grounded in the space of that song’s context. 

Miller’s voice, by the way, at times brings us feels of a 90’s goddess, and then sprawls out into the atmosphere as ethereally as we’ve ever encountered. “I Love To You” is one of our favorite tracks, instilling in us hope for the arts community, as this is some of the best lyricism we’ve experienced in a hot second.

Via Media is a back and forth of sorts that allows listeners to be transfixed and transported to view these topics from an outsider’s perspective. The robust nature of the compositions is compelling, and leaves us wanting more. Don’t believe us? Try the EP on for size now!

by meredith schneider + kendal chandler