Category Archives: Check ’em Out!

Remix: Izzy Bizu – “White Tiger” (Cat Carpenters Remix)

Izzy Bizu is a 22-year-old singer/songwriter from South West London, born to an Ethiopian Mother and English Father. She grew up listening to Ella Fitzgerald, Betty Swan, Betty Wright, and James Brown and draws on these influences alongside newer influences such as Amy Winehouse and Adele, to create a fusion of soul, funk, jazz, and pop that sounds classic and brand spanking new all at once.

Being 2016 Brits Critics Choice finalist, The BBC’s Introducing Artist of the Year 2016 and chosen as the voice of the 2016 Euros with her cover of Edith Piaf’s La Foule, she is quickly proving herself as one of the most exciting breakthrough British artists of the year. Garnering early support from 1Xtra and BBC Radio 1 on her independent six-tracker, Coolbeanz EP, before signing to Sony/RED MUSIC there’s been plenty a new fans in the front row thanks to instant classics like “White Tiger”, now with over 75 million global Spotify streams, the heart-wrenching “Mad Behaviour”, and viral Honne collaboration “Someone That Loves You”.

Drawing on her time moving countries, schools and the relationships that have entailed, Izzy is a cultural explorer, memories, experience and feelings evoking the songs we’re soon to hear and the thought-provoking conversation she already provides. Wearing her thoughts on her sleeve, you’ll be pushed to find many a debut this honest.

Her debut album, A Moment of Madness is out now (which you can stream via Spotify HERE); and the South London born singer/songwriter is debuting the Cat Carpenters remix of her hit “White Tiger,” which you can check out below along with tour dates alongside Coldplay!

UPCOMING TOUR DATES:
with Coldplay
8/12 Minneapolis MN – US Bank Stadium
8/14 Omaha NE – Centurylink Center
8/15 Kansas City MO – Spirit Center
8/17 Chicago IL – Soldier Field
8/19 Cleveland OH – Quicken Loans Arena
8/21 Toronto ON – Rogers Centre
8/22 Toronto ON – Rogers Centre
8/25 Houston TX – NRG Stadium
8/28 Miami FL – Hard Rock Stadium

 

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Why Sit Down When You Wanna Dance?

Check out this catchy little diddy from a group named thanks. The duo is Steve Pagano and Mario Borgatta and together they combine psychedelic pop, cinematic vibes and electronically influenced beats and melodies.

The duo emerged after meeting at Berklee College of Music in 2009. It was then that Pagano and Borgatta realized they shared the same sentiment for music and how aligned their goal really was. Together they have accomplished this goal in crafting a sound which is simultaneously unique and accessible to the masses. They set out with the intent to express their story through an artistic portrayal of music and lyrics and prevailed in culminating a winning formula which can resonate with their audiences.

Their highly anticipated debut album Colfax, named after the location of their recording studio and where the majority of the album was conceived, is the result of the pair uniting and a culmination of their mutual thoughts and beliefs. Colfax depicts the duo’s endeavor in stepping away from the grasp of musical elitism and producing material which is true to not only themselves but to the world around them. The importance of making a record which was relatable to different people was crucial. “Whatever the theme is, we do our best to keep it transparent so it can be interpreted in different ways”, admits Borgatta. thanks. pride themselves on being people who are in touch with the universe and the people who occupy it. This assimilation with the people can be felt in their music and there is no mistake, it’s genuine.

Lead single “Your World” consists of catchy psych-pop melodies, climactic choruses and upbeat funk rhythms, reminiscent of early MGMT. Enriched with an array of textures and vintage synths it is the ultimate summer anthem. Despite “Your World” having an optimistic, summery feel the song admittedly delivers a powerful message, with the lyrics being in reference to an idea of a present-day society where lives are governed by a political agenda we may or may not agree with. Borgatta reveals, “the idea was inspired by George Orwell’s “Nineteen Eighty-Four” and though our lyrics aren’t meant to express any opinion towards a specific political idea or belief, we hope to motivate people to take action in what they believe in”.

“Annabelle” highlights the band’s diversity with a more 60’s psych influence, combining acid-folk and a hint of stoner power-pop. Borgatta admits how they were listening to The Beatles “Across The Universe” during their time spent in the studio and “Annabelle” is a clear indication of this inspiration.

Pagano and Borgatta have seen previous success with numerous TV placements on major networks including MTV, ABC and Netflix, as well as having engineered on records from world renown, critically acclaimed artists such as Muse, Death Cab For Cutie, Foster The People and many more.

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Video: Alice Merton – “No Roots”

Alice Merton signs with Mom + Pop Music! Her single “No Roots” has already captured an immense amount of attention with millions of global plays on Spotify and YouTube, and has been recently added to Alt/AAA U.S. radio. She has new adds this week including LA, Chicago, Austin, Dallas, SF, Minneapolis + NYC/Sirius Alt Nation. Look out for Alice later this year and early next as she plans to tour both Europe and the U.S..

“I’ve got no roots, but my home was never on the ground.”

One whole sentence seems to sum up the life of the English/Canadian singer and songwriter Alice Merton. Four countries and eleven moves later, she starts to take her first independent steps into the music industry. With success – “No Roots” reached top positions on iTunes, Spotify, Shazam and Hype Machine. In Germany, the song has already reached platinum status and was #1 in the official single charts.

Raised in Canada, finishing high school in Germany, then moving on to England with her family, Alice has gotten quite used to packing and unpacking boxes. With her debut single “No Roots”, she describes the life of having had many different homes but comes to the realization that her home was never in one place.

At the age of five she started taking classical piano lessons, four years later she was introduced to vocal training. After spending many years being classically trained, Alice discovered the art of songwriting through one of her high school courses in Germany. She then went on to study songwriting and pursue her dream of becoming a professional singer/songwriter.

During her studies, she started working with various producers. Finding the right producer is like finding a missing puzzle piece, you know it’s there somewhere, but it takes a really long time to find.” However, after being introduced to Nicolas Rebscher, a Berlin-based producer, she knew she had found her match.

Creating a very analog and organic pop sound, going back to the basics of drum and bass driven music, they combined their individual styles to develop a style of their own. Nicolas Rebscher’s arrangements were the perfect addition to Alice’s melodies, combining the depth and softness in her voice, with his energetic and charismatic sounds.

TOUR DATES:

08/04  Appletree Garden Festival – Diepholz, Germany

08/04  Parklichter Festival – Bad Oeynhausen, Germany

08/05  Food For Your Senses Festival – Kirchberg, Luxembourg

08/25  Gamescon – Cologne, Germany

08/26  Laternenfest – Halle, Germany

09/9  Rennbahn Berlin Hoppegarten – Berlin, Germany

09/10  Lollapalooza Berlin – Berlin, Germany

09/14  SWR3 New Pop Festival – Baden Baden, Germany

09/15  NDR 2 Soundcheck Festival – Göttingen, Germany

9/20-23  Reeperbahn Festival – Hamburg, Germany

11/17  New Fall Festival – Düsseldorf, Germany

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Can’t Get Enough FØNX

British artist, songwriter and producer FØNX has today released his debut single ‘Can’t Get Enough’, which was produced by Grammy award-winner Tommaso Colliva (Muse).

FØNX explains, “’Can’t Get Enough’ came about whilst I was homeless and sofa surfing for a couple of months and after a very colorful twenty-four hours, I found myself writing initial ideas for the song”.

Drawing influence from the likes of Kanye West, Childish Gambino, Frank Ocean, D’Angelo, John Mayer and Tame Impala, FØNX delivers R’n’B-infused pop with jazz, funk and soul influences, merging catchy grooves, memorable hooks and intricate guitar licks with inspired lyrical content.

Coming from a musical background FØNX started learning guitar at the age of seven and was soon introduced to rap and hip hop, sparking his enthusiasm to start writing lyrics and create backing tracks from samples.

FØNX continued experimenting with music and film during a number of years of home-schooling and soon enrolled at the Brit School where he studied music.

Since leaving, FØNX has continued writing and producing his music at home, on trains, buses, in coffee shops and backstage before shows, constantly coming up with ideas for melodies and lyrics wherever he went. Playing the live circuit around London and the South East he has also performed at various festivals including Barn on The Farm, Cornbury Festival, Isle Of Wight Festival and Leefest.

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Newest Love: Satellite Mode

Photo Cred: Shervin Lainez

“Her vocals effortlessly convey her story of finding love from adolescence to maturity, roping the listener in after just the first verse. The backdrop for those lyrics is equally impressive, bringing a myriad of fluttering synths, booming percussion, and softly strummed guitars, all of which create an expansive soundscape.” – The Music Ninja

“Over the last year the duo have put both tragedy and heartbreak into their work.” – Noisey

“…Satellite Mode has harnessed a loosely tuned, Rickenbacker guitar rift and a crazy good synth loop to make their sound.” – Impose

“…a plethora of top-notch releases.” – HighClouds

New York City-based, indie pop/rock duo Satellite Mode announce their debut EP, Wild Excuses, due out August 11th, 2017. Half the EP tracks, including “Wild  Excuses,” were mastered by Grammy Award-winning mastering engineer Joe LaPorta (David Bowie, Bjork, Beach House, Vampire Weekend) at Sterling Sound. The duo recently shared their lead single, “Bad Woman,” via BlackBook, who describes the track as “a statement of defiant self-possession set against a potent musical backdrop of contemporary rock & roll cabaret – with its fuzzed out synths and ominous strut of a groove.”

Satellite Mode is the project of the classically trained duo of vocalist, Jess Carvo and producer and instrumentalist Alex Marko. Facing the threat of never being able to sing again, Carvo found her voice after an emergency vocal surgery and delved into writing as a creative outlet. Soon meeting Marko, who had just gone through a breakup, the duo transformed hardship and strife into power and success, using their musical chemistry and formal training as a vehicle for expressive creation. The band independently released single, “Wild Excuses,”  via Noisey, landing a spot on Spotify’s coveted Weekly Buzz playlist, gaining over one million streams on Spotify to date. The track holds the namesake and is the opening track for their forthcoming 6- track EP. Satellite Mode has supported a variety of live acts including Great Good Fine Ok, The Night Game and Flor.

Wild Excuses, the first full collection of works released by the duo, includes previously released (and beloved) tracks such as “Fair,” “Aphrodite” and “Warm Fire Lightning,” and unheard new material. Lead single, “Bad Woman,” highlights the duo’s expressive dynamic musicality, beginning with Carvo’s soft croon, slowly escalating to an explosion of glitchy electronics, shimmering keys, blissed out guitar and anthemic vocals. The duo’s second single, a cover of Chris Isaak’s “Wicked Game,” presents a reinterpretation of the classic rockabilly track with dreamy layers of sound, passionate vocals and constant crescendo to a sonic climax. “Warm Fire Lightning” was mastered by Alex DeTurk (DIIV, TEEN, The Knocks) at Strange Weather in Brooklyn. Wild Excuses was mixed by Damian Press.

TOUR DATES
8/8/17 – Baby’s All Right – Brooklyn, NY (RELEASE SHOW)

WILD EXCUSES – TRACKLISTING

01. Wild Excuses
02. Fair
03. Warm Fire Lightning
04. Bad Woman
05. Aphrodite
06. Wicked Game

Opposites don’t just attract; they make magic.

What happens when you combine a classically trained multi-instrumentalist with a knack for off-kilter cinematic soundscapes and a powerhouse singer with a staggering vocal range? The answer is New York duo Satellite Mode—Jess Carvo [vocals] and Alex Marko [instrumentation, production].

A mélange of booming emotionally charged vocal sorcery and hypnotic sonic backdrops, the group has quietly become a phenomenon. Without traditional promotion, they already racked up over 2 million cumulative plays on Spotify, landed on the coveted Weekly Buzz playlist, and crashed the platform’s U.S. Viral Top 10 and Overall Top 10 in addition to going Top 5 on Hype Machine. Early praise came from Noisey and other tastemakers as the pair wowed audiences throughout NYC since their 2016 arrival. You could think of them as the NETFLIX generation’s answer to Portishead, and you’d only be about halfway there…After teasing out singles, 2017’s Wild Excuses EP formally unlocks the world of Satellite Mode.

“We’re two sides of one whole,” explains Alex. “Even though the music is electronic, I try to bring a live feel beyond the glue of synths. In terms of songwriting, I draw from sixties influences like The Kinks, The Beatles, Velvet Underground, and Lou Reed solo. I bring the rawness. Jess is the honesty and vulnerability. There’s something under that voice a lot of people don’t have.”

“It wasn’t until I met Alex that everything shifted,” admits Jess. “At the time, I was writing a lot and recovering from intense vocal cord surgery. I was told I might never sing again and I was in need of being liberated from who I thought I should be as an artist. I bring a lot of longing to the table. As a performer, I believe my job is to expose myself to others who are having trouble showing themselves. That’s what it comes down to.”

Initially introduced via New York City’s intimate songwriters circle in 2014, Jess and Alex didn’t begin creating until almost a year later. Facing an unspeakable family tragedy soon after meeting Alex, Jess yearned for a cathartic vehicle, while Alex, broken from the disintegration of a long relationship and the malaise of corporate America, needed the same.

“When we first met, we were in such different stages of life,” recalls Alex. “I had this epiphany. I was in a corporate job, and I was like, ‘What am I doing with my life? All I want to do is music.’ I completely changed my life to follow my music. Jess became the outlet.”

“Whatever happened with the tragedy in my life ended up being the impetus for forming Satellite Mode, which helped me rediscover my voice” Jess elaborates. “It gave me purpose and direction. This would be our music. It wasn’t something we were going to pitch out. We peeled away those layers of ourselves and became very personal.”

They uploaded “Wild Excuses” online, and it blasted off almost immediately. In under a year, it individually generated close to 1 million Spotify streams and counting. Now, it serves as the title track of their debut EP. Boasting online favorites “Fair,” “Aphrodite,” and “Warm Fire Lightning,” the six-song set elegantly stirs trip-hop expanse, rock swagger, and ceremoniously massive singing into one intoxicating brew. The single “Bad Woman” begins with a delicate croon that slowly crescendos into an explosion of glitchy electronic tones, spacey guitar leads, shimmering keys, and Jess’s stadium-size pipes as she soulfully declares, “Yes, I’m a bad bad woman.”

“It’s about the double standard of being a girl,” she reveals. “I was thinking about a lot of things all at once. You could see this double standard clearly mirrored in the political landscape. I also found it among my friends’ personal relationships. This angst comes out in our songs, as the double standard is prevalent with being a female in the entertainment industry. It’s a mash-up of all of these frustrations and stories.”

Elsewhere on the EP, they breathe new life into Chris Isaak’s “Wicked Game” with a vibrant and vivid cover draped in airy textures and tones. “We really like to put our own spin on things,” remarks Alex.

In the end, the connection between Jess and Alex translates to listeners everywhere via Satellite Mode.

“When people hear us, I’d love for them to get that feeling in their stomach music can evoke,” Alex leaves off. “A lot of our art is about overcoming tragedy or changing your life around. It could hopefully be motivating.”

“I just hope they feel everything a little more intensely,” concludes Jess. “My favorite musicians make me feel like I’m not alone in my thoughts and, in some way, speak a universal truth. I want them to have fun and feel lighter. We’re not so different than they are.”

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Newest Love: White Cliffs

“Pulsing with shakers and bass, the track oozes hazy electro-pop magic. White Cliffs tests out his own vocals as well, which works well in highlight the lean, sexy energy of the track. The ultimate result is a lusty dance track, perfect for pulling your favorite person nice and close on a humid summer night.” – The 405

 

Check out this new single from White Cliffs, “On Call” which will be featured on his debut EP due out 9/29. When talking about the track White Cliffs says, “”On Call” represents a new road that I’ve wanted to travel since making music,” says White Cliffs. “It’s a little taste of the songs I’ll be releasing from now on and I can’t put into words how excited I am to share it with everyone.” Be sure to be on the look out for more White Cliffs as the summer rolls along.

Brooklyn solo artist White Cliffs is excited to release his debut single “On Call.”  This song features a dizzying blend of guitars, organs, and synthesizers, topped with his own vocals.  The track represents a refreshing new direction for the producer and is the first tune off of his forthcoming EP.

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Newest Love: Private Island

Photo credit: Anthony Pham

“For a sound so contagious, I’d bet they’re impressive to see live.”
– What Youth

“So grab your sunglasses and sunscreen and hit the pool with this one on your loudspeakers.” — Earmilk

“L.A.-based Private Island has one foot in the retro-ism of smooth jazz and funk and the other in the gang’s-all-here musical collectivism of modern indie-pop.”
– Buzzbands.LA

After dominating the West Coast music scene and selling out headlining shows in LA, Private Island is heading on their first US Tour with Future Generations, prepared to bring their mix of funky California indie pop-rock to a venue near you. After making a splash on the internet with their Hype Machine approved hit “Drugs,” and over 3 million streams on Spotify, Private Island is excited to promote their third studio project, Night Drivewhich will mark a slight departure from their indie-rock past to a smoother R&B vibe.

The lead single, “Turbulence,” is Private Island’s first step into a world that breaks away from the shimmering indie-rock of their past releases. While maintaining their roots, the new music opens the door into a darker, more polished sound, where lead singer Christian Lum effortlessly denounces his loss of faith in love. The sonic development of the new single mixed with their signature bluesy-rock sound leaves listeners with a taste of the new album, due out fall 2017. The Southern California six-piece band, comprised of Christian Lum, Tommy Nickerson, Cameron Anderson, Michelle Guerrero, Tim Barbour and Roger Mawer, worked with producer Jacob Munk and mastering engineer Joe Lambert for Night Drive.

TOUR DATES

July 28th @ The High Watt in Nashville, TN

July 29th @ The EARL in Atlanta, GA

Aug 1st @ The Evening Muse in Charlotte, NC

Aug 2nd @ DC9 in Washington, DC

Aug 4th @ Kung Fu Necktie in Philadelphia, PA

Aug 5th @ Knitting Factory in Brooklyn, NY

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Check ‘Em Out: Warbly Jets

LA’s Warbly Jets have been building buzz locally and nationally since the release of their debut single “Alive” last November. In addition to being named an Artist to Watch by KCRW and earning praise from both LA Weekly and LA Record, they’ve also racked up spins on Beats1 and KROQ, caught the attention of Liam Gallagher’s Pretty Green (who used “Alive” as the official song of its SS17 line), and landed slots opening for acts like The Dandy Warhols, The Mystery Lights, and Night Beats. 

Now, Warbly Jets share their second single, “The Lowdown.” A snarling anthem meant to call out the music industry and its endless games, it’s the band’s way of saying that they’re here, and they’re here to stay. (Check it out below.)

“The Lowdown” was written last year, beginning with a backbeat and bass lick constructed by keyboardist Julien O’Neill. From there, the band added guitars, vocals, and additional melodies, along with a heavy dose of confidence and a playfully brash attitude. Inspired by their own experiences with the music industry at large — specifically the empty promises of stardom and money, all while major labels go bankrupt pumping out heartless music —  “The Lowdown” is Warbly Jets’ way of asserting that they got where they are on their own, and they’re not going to wait for anyone to give them the green light.   


Warbly Jets on Tour:

7/30: Denver, CO @ Lost Lake
8/2: Kansas City, MO @ Riot Room
8/3: Rock Island, IL @ RIBCO
8/4 – 8/5: Appleton, WI @ Mile of Music
8/6: Chicago, IL @ Schubas
8/8: Brooklyn, NY @ Baby’s All Right (Pond Magazine Presents)
8/9: Brooklyn, NY @ Baby’s All Right (Pond Magazine Presents)
8/10: Philadelphia, PA @ Kung Fu Necktie
8/11: Washington, D.C. @ DC9
8/15: Nashville, TN @ The Basement
8/19: Phoenix, AZ @ Valley Bar
8/20: San Diego, CA @ Soda Bar
9/5: London, ENG @ The Shacklewell Arms
9/12: London, ENG @ The Shacklewell Arms
9/19: London, ENG @ The Shacklewell Arms
9/25: London, ENG @ The Shacklewell Arms

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Check ‘Em Out: Priest

Priest announces their debut album New Flesh. The album is set for release on the 17th of November on Lövely Records. The Stockholm based band have during the spring released praised singles as “The Cross”, “Reloader” and “The Pit”.  Album producer Simon Söderberg (Alpha/ ex Ghost member) has worked with the band to perfect their sound. There is modern touch with a retro vibe over the entire album. New Flesh contains a total of ten tracks that that brings 2017 back to the 80´s.

New Flesh will be released on all digital platforms and as physical CDs and LPs. The album is available as a bundle including CD, LP, Priest Logo Metal Pin and a cover art Tote bag. The LPs are available on black and purple colored vinyl. Everything can be orded from: http://freighttrain.se/

Tracklist
1 – The Pit
2 – Vaudeville
3 – History in Black
4 – Populist
5 – The Cross
6 – Private Eye
7 – Nightmare Hotel
8 – Virus
9 – Call My Name
10 – Reloader

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Check ‘Em Out: Colt.22

Los Angeles alternative indie-rock band Colt.22 will release their highly-anticipated debut album Freedom/Freewill on indie label Elite Frequency Group with distribution by The Orchard on Friday, August 25th. Colt.22 is a collaboration between two experienced music producers and writers, John “Fingazz” Stary and Travis Pavur.

Their mission is to draw upon influences of the past and fuse them with the sound of now. This fusion has a powerful reaction, like the recoil of a gun, firing out lyrical content like bullets of self-awareness and knowledge. They blend Stary’s gritty emotional vocals and driving beats with Pavur’s solid rock guitar riffs. A compilation of 11 songs, Freedom/Freewill is an exploration of blues, rock, and electronic music that uses heavy anthemic chants layered with harmonies.

Pre-order Freedom/Freewill – http://apple.co/2t32elP

The video for the album’s first single “Call To Action” is a tribute to cult classic films like Kill Bill and Sin City. Following Los Angeles parkour stunt group Substance Over Hype, “it’s got gunfights, martial arts, and car chases and is generally bad ass” (Ghettoblaster Magazine).

Both, Fingazz and Pavur, met in 2011 while working on a project for Interscope Records. Fingazz is a platinum award certified hip-hop producer best known around the globe as one of the few masters of the “talkbox,” which has been featured on records by Snoop Dogg, Mike Posner, Far East Movement, Flo Rida, Tyga, Bryson Tiller, Just Blaze, and many more.  His sound can be described as “Future Funk” and his song “Winning” won on So You Think You Can Dance.

In contrast, the New Orleans-born Pavur is a rocker through and through. He has recorded and produced countless up and coming rock acts from his own Los Angeles studio, Golden Beat Recording. Currently, he is an engineer at the historic Valentine Recording Studios as well, working with acts like Lana Del Rey and Eagles of Death Metal. During their time at Interscope, the two lived together in a Hollywood Hills music collective. They immediately hit it off and began working together with an intense focus to fuel the world with a new alt rock sound. Enter: Colt.22.

Another track, “Find Your Pride” has been featured in the promos for Showtime’s show Billions.

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