New York-based singer/songwriter/producer Amber Mark has returned with infectious new single ‘Put You On’ featuring Virginia native rapper/singer DRAM via PMR/Virgin Records. The brand-new single from one of 2018’s hottest talents oozes East Coast sensibilities and summer vibes, all the while displaying Amber’s trademark husky vocal tones and sublime pop melodies. ‘Put Me On Feat. DRAM’ is available to stream and purchase on DSPs from HERE.
Discussing how the track came together, Amber reveals:-
“The idea of the song came from wanting to talk about a woman who made it out of the hood in NY and into the top of success. Cardi B was really blowing up at the time and I thought a similar story to hers would be such a vibe for the production. The beat sounded so much like summer in NY and I figured it would be dope to lyrically make a subtle NY anthem.”
‘Put You On Feat. DRAM’ is the follow up to Amber’s critically acclaimed ‘Conexão’ EP, released back in May, which found Amber weaving her extensive knowledge of international styles into a gorgeous musical tapestry embracing everything from slinky soul to Brazilian bossa nova. Upon release NME professed, “honest, eloquent and impossibly talented, Amber Mark is a breath of fresh air” while Pitchfork praised the EP as a “remarkably accomplished. Even at just four songs, Amber Mark sounds like a veteran of pop songcraft and performance”. Nowhere is this more evident than on the EP’s imperious lead single ‘Love Me Right’, a flawless indicator of Amber’s skills as both a songwriter and a producer, or on the Sade-approved cut ‘Love Is Stronger Than Pride’.
Having blown crowds away in the spring at her sold out headline show at Camden Assembly in support of her ‘Conexão’ EP, Amber will return to these shores for a run of dates in support of Leon Bridges in the autumn when she joins him on his European tour. Full details of these shows can be found below with tickets available from here: https://www.gigsandtours.com/tour/leon-bridges/
Amber Mark’s UK + EU Autumn Tour Dates:
23rd October – Munich Neue Theaterfabrik (Germany)
24th October – Cologne Live Music Hall (Germany)
25th October – Hamburg Docks (Germany)
27th October – Oslo Rockefeller (Norway)
28th October – Stockholm Cirkus (Sweden)
29th October – Copenhagen VEGA (Denmark)
30th October – Aarhus Train (Denmark)
1st November – Amsterdam AFAS Live (Netherlands)
2nd November – Brussels Ancienne Belgique (Belgium)
3rd November – Paris Le Trianon (France)
5th November – Bristol O2 Academy
7th November – Dublin Olympia Theatre
8th November – Dublin Olympia Theatre
9th November – Glasgow O2 Academy
11th November – Birmingham O2 Institute
12th November – Nottingham Rock City
14th November – Manchester Academy
15th November – Leeds O2 Academy
17th November – London Brixton Academy
18th November – London Brixton Academy
*All dates supporting Leon Bridges*
Click HERE to stream/purchase ‘Put You On Feat. DRAM’
Click HERE to stream/purchase Amber’s ‘Conexão’ EP
New Zealand pop singer and songwriter Robinson has released her brand new single ‘Medicine’, out now on Ministry Of Sound Records. With over 55 million streams to her name to date and a record which has just gone Platinum in Australia, follow-up ‘Medicine’ is the very highly-anticipated new single from the 22-year-old artist.
The track, co-written by Robinson, is a searingly honest reflection on the pain of heartbreak, and a realisation of the pain caused in past relationships. Robinson says:-
“Medicine is about not realising the weight of your actions and words until it happens to you. It’s about having a taste of your own medicine”.
Continuing her knack for a pop anthem filled with honesty, attitude and melody, ‘Medicine’ follows Robinson’s single ‘Nothing To Regret’ which was released earlier this year to widespread acclaim. NME described the track as “all subtle builds and triumphant climaxes, with a huge, emotive earworm of a chorus…a pop juggernaut” with The 405 dubbing it “an immediate attention-grabber…you will undoubtedly find yourself listening to it on repeat”. Chosen as one of their Next Wave artists, Clash said of Robinson that “her songwriting is remarkably mature, incredibly fresh.” It was championed by Zane Lowe at Beats 1, with further support at BBC Radio 1 and Kiss FM. At only 22-years-old, Robinson is one to watch.
Listen to ‘Medicine’ by Robinson here:- https://robinson.lnk.to/Medicine
Commercially as well as critically, reception to Robinson’s output to date has been unprecedented. ‘Nothing To Regret’ is certified platinum in Australia, and its official video has surpassed 1.5 million views on YouTube.
Sipho the Gift makes his return to music in full force today with the majestic new track ‘Hold Up’, released via Pontoon.
'Hold Up’ is the first new music to come from the South African rapper and MC in 2018, following the release of 2017’s acclaimed sophomore collection ‘Kintsugi’, and sets the tone for his upcoming third project ‘INDIGO’ - with more tracks and videos to follow.
“Hold Up is an exciting song about love. A resilient love that’s withstood, not only the test of time but, any obstacles thrown its way. I’m in love myself and this was a huge inspiration to me. I think not enough rappers talk about it for fear of appearing soft or wearing their hearts on their sleeves. The sound is fun, melodic and very rhythmic which is something I’m hoping to explore a lot more in the future as I play with more sounds”.
Initially setting out to make music that sounded like the artists he loved, Sipho quickly learnt that he wanted to tell his own story. On his first EP, Sterkspruit-born MC sought to distance himself from the pack. His skill-set betrayed his age; at 21 years young, eyes fixed upon an uncertain future, he released the self-produced Coming of Age EP (2015).
"I wanted to give a glimpse into the mind of a 20 year-old turning 21, measuring himself against the world and learning what it is to be a man while making your own destiny,” he says of it.
Coming of Age showcased Sipho’s ability to employ words, rhythm and melody to “tell people about themselves, while using myself as a mirror.” Following the release of this debut, Sipho suffered a period of depression - frustrated by the perceived lack of success for his music, and fueled by the loss of his laptop and two hard-drives worth of music.
It was two years until he would return with a palpable determination and the follow-up release ‘Kintsugi’ - the Japanese word a source of strength and sharpened focus.
As well as producing his own music, Sipho has also achieved production credits on music by the likes of Well$, Deniro Ferrar, and King Mez, who featured prominently on Dr. Dre’s Compton album.
'Hold Up’ is the result of Platoon’s incredible ‘Lab’ event in South Africa, bringing together rising artists and incredible talents from across the country to celebrate and create.
Hozier has released his new EP today, titled ‘Nina Cried Power’. Consisting of four brand new tracks written and performed by Hozier, the EP’s lead single and title track features legendary soul/gospel singer Mavis Staples, with iconic musician Booker T Jones on organ.
Single ‘Nina Cried Power’ channels the raw spirit and energy of protest and social activism. In the song, Hozier name-checks several iconic artists, activists and proponents of the civil rights movement whose messages, activism and artistry contributed to change through protest. Those mentioned in the track’s lyrics include (among others) Joni Mitchell, John Lennon, James Brown, the song’s namesake Nina Simone, and Mavis Staples - whose peerless vocals feature on the track too.
Of the single, Hozier says:-
“The song was written sometime last year, my aim was to credit the actuality of hope, solidarity and love found in the human spirit at a time when their opposites were being given a mainstream platform 24/7. The song started as a tongue-in-cheek inquiry into modern popular language regarding political awareness and grew from there.
In many ways the song is a thank you note to the legacy of artists from the 20th Century whose work still inspires us, and whose well we draw from in times of uncertainty. Mavis Staples is one such artist. Getting to work with her on this song was a joy, and nothing short of a dream come true.”
Mavis Staples says:-
“Oh, Nina is gonna wake the world up. Such a huge sound it could shake the Earth, filled with soul, passion, and fire, and it channels the struggles of some of my contemporaries. I’m telling you when you hear it, it’s going to drive you to rise up.”
The ‘Nina Cried Power’ EP continues with second track ‘NFWMB’, a softer song in contrast to the opener, which builds from just a tender acoustic guitar to a full and brooding sound, reminiscent of the song’s assertive lyric. ‘Moment’s Silence’ follows, an up-tempo, blues-inspired number whose lyrics serve as an ode to the peaceful clarity which love can yield, even when surrounded by the chaos and confusion of the wider world. The final track on the EP is ‘Shrike’, an example of Hozier’s astonishing vocal range and poetic lyricism as he urges: “Remember me love when I’m reborn…As the shrike to your sharp and glorious thorn.”
Listen to ‘Nina Cried Power’ here: https://Hozier.lnk.to/NCPPR
Mavis Staples is a multi-Grammy Award-winning artist and performer, and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1999 as part of The Staples Singers, the enormously influential gospel, soul and R&B group she was a founding member of. Fellow Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee and Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Booker T. Jones also appears on Hozier’s ‘Nina Cried Power EP’ - his inimitable Hammond B3 Organ playing appears on tracks 1, 2 and 3.
Booker T. Jones says:
“Hozier is a rare artist who remains a wellspring of creativity. Like a baby who never becomes a child, he lingers selflessly at the source, rendering one fresh song after the other.”
Hozier will play a special show at prestigious London venue Koko next Tuesday 11th September. All proceeds from the intimate show - which sold out within minutes - will go to War Child, a charity close to Hozier’s heart. He will announce further UK, Ireland & European dates on 17th September.
Born Andrew Hozier-Byrne, Hozier is an award-winning musician, singer and songwriter from Ireland. His number one, debut studio album ‘Hozier’ was released in October 2014 and includes the multi-Platinum, Grammy-nominated anthem 'Take Me To Church', which later won ‘Best Song’ for Hozier at the 2015 Ivor Novello Awards. The record also featured the optimistic, up-tempo 'Someone New', the soulful 'Work Song', and early stand out 'From Eden'. In 2016, Hozier released the album’s closing track ‘Cherry Wine’ as a charity single to create awareness of the domestic abuse problems worldwide, with proceeds benefiting a series of international domestic abuse charities. The official video features 3-time Oscar-nominated actress Saoirse Ronan. Hozier followed up the success of his debut LP with the track 'Better Love', taken from the soundtrack of the Warner Bros’ adventure film The Legend Of Tarzan.
Hozier’s ‘Nina Cried Power’ EP is out now via Island Records. Listen to the EP and connect with Hozier here: https://hozier.lnk.to/FollowPR
South London indie pop band Wolf Girl have announced that their second album ‘Every Now & Then’ will be released via Everything Sucks Music on 19th October. The announcement comes alongside a new single ‘Toast For Dinner’. Healey from the band, who is on lead vocals and guitar for this song but also handles bass duties and back-up vocals on various other tracks on the record, says:-
“This song is a tribute to my love of amateur magic, dual guitar riffs and toast. Toast is maybe the greatest food of them all and it is also my go-to if I’m burnt out and can’t find the energy to eat/cook a meal. This song is about a point where I was finding it hard to say no to things and ended up constantly feeling physically and emotionally drained. Sometimes I fantasise about there being multiple versions of myself like in Fantasia’s ‘The Sorcerer’s Apprentice’ so I can invest myself fully in everything that I do.”
‘Every Now & Then’ consists of nine hook-laden tunes about queer feelings, coming out and dealing with social burnout and marks a real period of growth for Wolf Girl. With Healy helming the majority of the songwriting, each track acted as a strange kind of therapy and catharsis, exploring sexuality, gender identity and anxiety. The album was recorded with Mark Jasper of Sound Savers and the band really focused on capturing the energy shown in their live shows.
New single & music video ‘Toast For Dinner’ out now:
YouTube | Pre-order | Spotify | Apple Music
There are a lot of firsts on this record. Christabel gets her first songwriting/lead vocal credit in the form of 'Dream Partner'. She’d chosen a deliberately ‘50s/’60s pop chord sequence and song structure so the band tried to emphasise that in the studio with handclaps and Wall of Sound/Joe Meek type reverbs. ‘Breaking News' also sees the addition of saxophone played by Phil Whaite of Guttfull. “Being fans of X-Ray Spex, Roxy Music and Downtown Boys, we knew we wanted to include horns on this track,” enthuses Healey. “It’s about "choosing to come out when you want", in a society where queer people are forced to do so repeatedly.”
In the two years since the release of their much-loved first album ‘We Tried’, Wolf Girl have shared bills with the likes of The Spook School, Girl Ray, and Worriers. They’ve also branched out into other music projects, from The Whooperups (Healey’s collaboration with AC from the Spook School) to Suggested Friends (where Christabel also takes up the drums).
The crunching, distorted guitars and catchy melodies that fans will remember from the band’s first album can still be found on ‘Every Now & Then’. But this new album is a bigger, braver and, at times, completely heart-breaking collection of songs and experiences – political, poignant, yet perfectly pop.
Tuesday 24th July - Acoustic Indietracks warm up, Waterintobeer, London
Sunday 29th July - Indietracks Festival, Midland Railway Butterley, Derbyshire
Friday 3rd August - Viral Nights, The Lock Tavern, London
Sunday 5th August - How To Make Friends All Dayer, The Sebright Arms, London
Saturday 15th September - Loud Women Fest, Tufnell Park Dome, London
WOLF GIRL ARE:
Healey – Bass, Guitar, Vocals (Pronoun – They)
Christabel Williams – Drums, Vocals (Pronoun – She)
Carl Farrugia – Guitar, Vocals (Pronoun – He / They)
Christopher Wood – Guitar, Bass (Pronoun – He)
Website // Facebook // Twitter // Bandcamp // Spotify // Apple Music // Instagram
New Zealand-born rising pop act Robinson today reveals her brand-new track, ‘Don’t Trust Myself’, out now via Ministry of Sound/Sony.
Watch the lyric video for ‘Don’t Trust Myself’ HERE
The emotional and melodic song highlights Robinson’s ability to create intimate lyrics over catchy melodies, all whilst showcasing her vocal prowess. The track was co-written by Robinson and produced by Sam de Jong (30 Seconds to Mars, Noah Kahan).
Robinson says of the track:
“Don’t Trust Myself’ is about falling too hard, too soon for someone - it’s about the idea of them being etched inside your head making it hard to realise who they truly are and that you can’t trust yourself around them because your heart seems to override your head.’
‘Don’t Trust Myself’ is Robinson’s second release this year, following ‘Nothing to Regret’, which was released in February. The song - called an ‘immediate attention-grabber’ by the 405 - has now amassed over 50 million streams worldwide and has achieved Platinum certification in Australia and Gold in New Zealand. ‘Nothing to Regret’ has also received support from Zane Lowe at Beats 1 as well as Radio 1. At only 21-years-old, Robinson is one to watch.
‘Don’t Trust Myself’ is released ahead of her highly-anticipated debut UK performance at Thousand Island in The Garage, London tonight. For tickets, visit https://myticket.co.uk/artists/robinson.
Few debuts make the kind of impact that TS Graye's powerful 'MY2' did when the seventeen-year old released it in June, with many earmarking it as the most exciting introduction to a new artist this year. With the track having reached over 100,000 streams on Spotify alone, TS Graye has today shared her eagerly awaited follow up; 'Take Notes'. Showcasing a different side to her musicality, with a more stripped back, almost ballad-like feel laden with soul and authenticity, 'Take Notes' further proves TS Graye is an inimitable force - listen here.
Written about falling in love with your best friend, the song is a personal account from the young Bristol based singer-songwriter. And, like her debut 'MY2', where she cleverly engaged use of wordplay and double entendre, she returns to form with her use of intricate and considered lyricism in this new track. In particular, her words are meant to convey intensity in sound and meaning, as the production and melody of the chorus reach new heights. It was produced by Louis Mattrs, who she met online and continues to work closely with.
On the meaning behind 'Take Notes', TS Graye says:-
"Take Notes is about realising that you've fallen in love with with someone unexpectedly. At first, I was soul-searching, trying to understand why I was feeling some kind of way about a friend. As soon as I clocked that I was in love, I saw that the game had changed forever and had to lay down the law, hence spelling out the rules and asking him to take notes."
Growing up in the West Country, TS Graye’s influences never strayed far from home; trip hop and the sounds of neighbouring Bristol (e.g. Massive Attack, Tricky, Portishead) play out heavily in her music, but true to her generation she discovered most of the music she loves online (she references Lana Del Rey, Banks, Post Malone and Drake and her sound invokes likeness to greats Rihanna, SZA, Alicia Keys and Jorja Smith).
Self-taught, TS Graye learned how to produce and play piano from her bedroom and has been writing two songs a week since she was thirteen. Her passions outside of music include experimenting with make-up and zine making.
Stay tuned for more news to follow.
Instagram | Twitter | Facebook
Northern Ireland's Jealous of the Birds shares new single 'Russian Doll'; taken from new EP out July 13th
Following on from her recent single 'Plastic Skeletons' - and its accompanying video - today Northern Ireland's Jealous of the Birds - aka Naomi Hamilton - returns once more with 'Russian Doll', the closing track of her forthcoming new EP, The Moths Of What I Want Will Eat Me In My Sleep, which arrives July 13th via her new homes Hand In Hive (UK & Europe) and Canvasback Music (US).
'Russian Doll' - which originally appeared on Hamilton's 2016 debut album, Parma Violets, in a slightly more subdued form - makes a return on the new EP retooled, re-mixed by Ben Baptie (Young Fathers, Daughter, Lianne La Havas, London Grammar) and sounding the best it's ever done. A meandering, driving number replete with punchy guitars, syncopated wordplay and well-travelled imagery, it sits comfortably in the middle of a Venn diagram between Elastica, Speedy Ortiz and Cat Power.
Hamilton, speaking of the song's central metaphor, says:-
"It’s about when you’re in a relationship and you’re having someone else projecting certain things on you and a lot of the time you don’t have any control over that. It’s matching up the person you want to become and what someone else sees you as... I was thinking about the Freudian iceberg and it’s a comparison: you’ve got the sense of self and your ego and it’s all very multi-layered."
Watch the lyric video for 'Russian Doll' here: https://youtu.be/AJ6DUrb1okk
And revisit the raucous recent video for 'Plastic Skeletons', directed by Libby Burke Wilde, here: https://youtu.be/EmYfPMDJoQs
Hamilton has been making waves in the indie music scene since her debut EP Capricorn, which she recorded while studying English and Creative Writing at Queen’s University, Belfast. Then, following the 2016 release of her aforementioned debut album proper, Parma Violets, came a serendipitous SXSW performance that same year that would ultimately lead to her signing with Canvasback (alt-J, The War on Drugs) and subsequently Hand In Hive (Saltwater Sun, Dama Scout).
Recent single 'Plastic Skeletons' was debuted by NPR, who write "[It] takes the singer's gift for evocative, concisely crafted, seemingly free-associated wordcraft and sets it against a swirling and forceful psych-rock arrangement." Since its launch, the track has seen UK radio support across BBC Radio1 (where it was recently awarded Huw Stephens' Tune of the Week), 6Music, Amazing Radio and more.
See further below for where you can catch Jealous of the Birds live in the coming months and keep your eyes peeled for more dates on both sides of the Atlantic to be announced soon.
Sept 27 | Dublin, Ireland - The Workman's Club
Oct 14 | Dublin, Ireland - Bord Gais Energy Theatre
Pre-order The Moths of What I Want Will Eat Me in My Sleep on 12" white vinyl here.
Rising, British pop prodigy Emily Burns has today shared an acoustic version of her catchiest single yet; 'Cheat', as the original nears one million streams on Spotify (taking her total Spotify stream count to over five million since her first single release earlier this year). Listen to the acoustic version [smarturl.it/CHEATacoustic]here, or revisit the original.
'Cheat' perfectly demonstrates Emily's knack for story telling in her music, with her relatable lyricism atop impeccable melody and infectious hooks, and is the third cut to be taken from her forthcoming debut mini-album 'Seven Scenes From The Same Summer', out 20th July on 37 Adventures (JONES, salute, Geowulf).
Explaining the meaning behind the song, Emily reveals:
"I wrote “Cheat” after a whirlwind romance that ended much more abruptly than I’d hoped for! I was feeling let down but was struggling to see anything other than the good in this person. Then I had a chat with some friends who reminded me that I would have behaved very differently in the situation so, I went into the studio and expressed that. I wrote this one with LMBY, who’s a really good friend of mine, which made it super easy to get straight to the details and vent freely. I felt much better after writing it…"
Likened to Charli XCX and MØ (The Line of Best Fit) and Sigrid and Tove Lo (Popjustice, Disco Naïveté), 22-year old Emily is writing modern, ambitious, frank pop songs about ex-girlfriends, spite, love and revenge. Having recently returned from some writing sessions in Sweden with MadFun (all female producer crew) and TEN (home of Tove Stryke, Icona Pop and all the Scandi greats), her mini-album release will be supported by a headline London show at Sebright Arms, and a return to her homeland Scotland.
Date listings as follows:
Sat 14th July - Longitude, Dublin
Wed 1st Aug - Sebright Arms, London (headline show)
Fri 3rd Aug - Belladrum, Scotland
Sat 18th Aug - Hardwick Live, Stockton Upon Tees
Sat 25th Aug - Pride, Manchester
Sat 15th Sept - UWE Freshers Ball, Bristol
Sat 3rd Nov - 2Q Festival, Lincoln
Sat 1st Dec - DIVA Music Festival, Great Yarmouth
'Seven Scenes From The Same Summer' will be available in limited-edition pink vinyl LP (pre-order here).
Stay tuned for more news to come soon.
Gruff Rhys performs 'No Profit In Pain' outside Cardiff Castle to officially launch National Theatre Wales’ NHS70 Festival
Welsh singer Gruff Rhys performed his new song, No Profit in Pain today outside Cardiff Castle to officially launch National Theatre Wales’ NHS70 Festival.
National Theatre Wales commissioned Gruff Rhys to write a brand-new song paying tribute to the NHS during its anniversary year. No Profit in Pain was released today (5 July 2018), the actual day that the NHS celebrates its 70th birthday.
Earlier today, Gruff, along with National Theatre Wales’ Artistic Director, Kully Thiarai, gathered under the Aneurin Bevan Statue (the Welsh Labour MP from Tredegar who was responsible for creating the NHS in 1948) on Cardiff’s Queen Street for a photo opportunity to officially launch National Theatre Wales’s NHS70 Festival.
National Theatre Wales will celebrate the National Health Service’s 70th birthday throughout July with a month-long, multi-artform festival, inspired by the staff and patients of this unique institution. This country-wide festival will feature productions and events made and performed in locations across Wales, all celebrating one of Wales’ best exports.
Kully Thiarai, Artistic Director at NTW said:-
“It’s great to have an opportunity to invite Gruff back to collaborate with us here at National Theatre Wales to be part of our NHS70 festival. A festival that seeks to celebrate the NHS - a much loved institution that is close to so many people's hearts. An idea born in Wales and made universal by Aneurin Bevan from Tredegar. This anniversary is our chance to pay tribute to a great Welsh story and thank ‘Nye’ for his creation, and most importantly to say thank you and celebrate the staff and volunteers of our unique NHS who pick us up when we fall.”
“The NHS is something that we can too easily take for granted. It’s been there for me throughout my life and has also saved many of my family members lives. In that sense it means more than anything I could ever convey in a pop song. For the song I’ve focused on the battle to keep the NHS as a free service in public ownership. Privatisation is creeping in and it will be a death knell for the NHS we all love and cherish if we are not vigilant.”
NHS70 Festival productions and events will be performed in venues all over Wales, including hospitals, schools, memorial halls and arts venues in Carmarthen, Welshpool, Wrexham, Bangor and Tredegar, birthplace of the NHS’ founder, Aneurin Bevan, all as part of the festival.
Aneira Thomas, the first baby ever to be born under the NHS and Patron of the NHS70 Festival said:-
“I think National Theatre Wales NHS70 Festival is a wonderful idea. It’s great to see the arts community celebrate this unique institution with us all. As patron of the festival, I can’t wait to see some of these some of the shows they have planned which all pay tribute to the staff, volunteers and patients of our wonderful NHS”.
You can listen to No Profit in Pain via http://bit.ly/NoProfitInPain
A link to the No Profit in Pain can be viewed here http://bit.ly/NoProfitInPainVID
For further information about NTW’s NHS70 Festvial, click here https://www.nationaltheatrewales.org/
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