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Ariana Grande

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One Love Manchester event will go ahead following London Bridge attack

Breaking, News, Pop

4th June 2017

Ariana Grande’s manager, Scooter Braun, has confirmed that the One Love event held in memory of the victims of the Manchester terror attack two weeks ago, will still take place this evening. He said that the show will go on “with greater purpose” after the terrorist attack last night in London which left 7 dead and 48 injured.

In an Instagram post this morning he said “After the events last night in London, and those in Manchester just two weeks ago, we feel a sense of responsibility to honor those lost, injured, and affected. We plan to honor them with courage, bravery, and defiance in the face of fear. Today’s One Love Manchester benefit concert will not only continue, but will do so with greater purpose. We must not be afraid, and in tribute to all those affected here and around the world, we will bring our voices together and sing loudly. I am pleased to say we have the full support of Greater Manchester police and the government and are assured the safety of all those attending is the highest priority. All artists involved have been unwavering in their support this morning and are determined to carry on with the show. We ask the strong city of Manchester and the world to join us in making the statement that hatred and fear will never win. Today we stand together. Thank you.”

💛

A post shared by Ariana Grande (@arianagrande) on

Ariana Grande will perform with other big names including Katy Perry, Niall Horan, Coldplay, Miley Cyrus and Justin Bieber after having visited children in hospital injured by the Manchester attack earlier this week. 

View the One Love Manchester benefit concert on BBC One between 6pm and 9pm (if you live in the UK) or on BBC Radio/Capitol Radio Networks.

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China Lane

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China Lane release video to new single ‘In Motion’

Breaking, Emerging Artists, Ones to Watch, Pop

27th February 2017

article-logo Manchester’s own electro-pop band, China Lane, has released the colourful and energetic music video to their second single ‘In Motion’. The song follows huge coverage of the groups debut single ‘Marco Polo’, which was published during 2016. ‘Marco Polo’ received recognition from BBC Radio 6, BBC Introducing as well as streaming services including Spotify, who featured the single on influential playlists. With over 125,000 streams on Spotify alone, China Lane’s debut shows the outstanding potential this young band has in their hands, with an already substantially growing audience. Check it out:

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Siboney + Andy // Secret

Breaking, Emerging Artists, Ones to Watch, Pop

1st December 2016

After years of toil in the studio and on the live circuit, Australian-born London locals Siboney & Andy have finally released their debut EP. ‘Secret’ is the perfect bite-sized introduction to this duo who have earned their stripes as veterans of the live scene and are now aiming to truly make their mark as recording artists. Both handle song-writing duties while Siboney takes the lead on vocals and Andy helms the production and instrumentals; an approach that works well.

Each song brings an entirely new flavour to the equation, creating within the space of only 4 tracks a surprisingly compatible blend of genres. The underlying (or perhaps overlying) theme is well-crafted, good-for-your-ears pop music. But it’s a pop comprised of everything from indie, electronica and at times even a touch of folk, just for good measure.

Standout track ‘See Me Through The Night’ is a great example of their ability to come together to write a genuinely beautiful song. It serves as a great opener and really gives Siboney the opportunity to show her chops as a singer.

Their first single ‘Secret’ sees them sharing vocal duties, using the opportunity to delve into deeper, more emotive territory. As they both sing of betrayal and a forbidden love, piercing guitars both acoustic and electric give it a distinct edge. It stands in stark opposition to the following track ‘Mexico’ which immediately switches mood and brings the fun. Built around a breezy instrumental, this track was made for carefree days of sunshine and road trips.

Their first recorded outing as a duo brings a lot to the table, but it’s the marriage of their crisp, unfaltering production and Siboney’s standout vocal performances that really make this an essential release and a stellar debut effort. Watch this space!

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M.I.A

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M.I.A shares ‘Freedun’ collab with Zayn Malik ahead of album release

News, Pop, R&B/Hip-Hop, Singer/Songwriter

3rd September 2016

Hip Hop artist M.I.A has shared a new track ahead of her album launch, expected out on 9th September.

The song called ‘Freedun’ features former One Direction singer-songwriter Zayn Malik, who since leaving the band has forged his own career with the release of his debut album on 25th March 2016, one year to the day after he left One Direction.

His new style of adult themed alt-r&b with a twist of pop aligns well with M.I.A’s, despite her saying in an interview with Annie Mac that working together took them both a little out of their comfort zones.

“It sort of takes me out my comfort zone but kind of takes him out of his a little bit as well. It just worked out.”M.I.A, Interview with Annie Mac, BBC Radio 1

‘AIM’ will be M.I.A’s fifth studio album to date, ‘Freedun’ becoming the third taster of what’s to come on the record after previous releases ‘Bird Song’, produced by the artists previous partner Diplo, and ‘Go Off’, a collaboration between Skrillex and DJ Blaqstarr.

Listen to Freedun:

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Black Eyed Peas

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Black Eyed Peas reunite to spread important message about gun violence [video]

Breaking, Dance/Electronic, Editors Choice, Pop

1st September 2016

American music legends the Black Eyed Peas have reunited to spread an important message about gun violence during the US Presidential Election. After five years apart the band have come back together to release a rendition of their song ‘Where Is The Love?’.

Originally released in 2003 for their third album Elephunk, Where Is The Love? was written by Will.i.am, Justin Timberlake, Taboo, apl.de.ap, Printz Board, Michael Fratantuno and George Pajon, Jr. The track topped the charts in both Australia and the UK.

A statement from a spokesperson for the band said that #WHERESTHELOVE “calls for calm, asking citizens of the world to stop the hate and violence that has resulted in many lives lost.” Proceeds from the song will go to Will.i.am’s own foundation i.am.angel – funding educational programs and college scholarships.

The remake features new names including Justin Timerblake (who sang and wrote on the original but wasn’t credited), Mary J. Blige, Tori Kelly, Usher and others. Find it exclusively on Apple Music, [here]

Black Eyed Peas.

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Kaiser Chiefs

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Kaiser Chiefs announce UK Tour

Breaking, Editors Choice, News, Pop, Rock

26th August 2016

Last week the Kaiser Chiefs announced that they will be going on a UK headline tour next year – following the news of their latest album ‘Stay Together’, due out on October 7th 2016. This album succeeds ‘Education, Education, Education and War’ released in 2014. It will be the 7th record in total since the band formed in 2003.

Tickets are already on general sale for all 8 venues, commencing at Llandudno, Venue Cymru Arena on Wednesday 22nd February 2017, and ending in their hometown of Leeds at the First Direct Arena on Saturday 4th March.

Kaiser Chiefs Tour

Tickets:

TicketMaster: po.st/KCTKTM 

GigsandTours: po.st/KCGNT 

AmazonTicketsUK: po.st/KCAMZT 

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Album review: Max Jury // debut album

News, Pop, Rock

4th June 2016

I’m not even going to try to deny my love for Max Jury’s debut album. When you review, you sometimes just have to give in and just admit you blatantly love something “just because.” And while I’m aware that answer wouldn’t get you far in school, music simply makes us feel stuff, right?

So what’s the deal with this boy from Des Moines, Iowa? So many questions answered with even more questions. Because that’s what’s happening. As you dig into this debut album in the pocket of Max’s corner of the universe, it’s like when you were a kid and your dad built you pillow fort. That excitement when you first drew the blankets to the side and your imagination took you wherever you wanted to go.

‘Numb’ starts of the album, a slow smooth tune, eloquently showing off the vocal chords of this guy. There is a sweetness and lightness to his voice, something a little undefinable but inviting. It seems effortless with the choir on ‘Princess’ and the faster paced ‘Beg & Run’ where Jury sings “Say that you’re alone but you know better / don’t know where you’re going even though you have time / It’s not romantic to take this for granted” (the guitar riff has been stuck in my head for a good two days now.)

Songwriting-wise we’re going to have to touch the subject of the likes of Elton John and Gram Parsons. Drop this kid into the mix and perhaps a new generation will take notice to the art of songwriting before a riff or a beat. “Everybody’s always saying to look over your shoulder / the grass is always greener and I should do what I’m told” he sings on ‘Love That Grows Old’ which is the epitome of that those classics mentioned above. And with that voice, it would seem the soulful Americana was destined for him.

Max Jury fills a space that we didn’t even know was missing from the music scene. Besides the obvious phenomenal songwriting and melody, the final product; what he has put together as a whole — music, feel, atmosphere, authenticity, songwriting and so forth, that’s so rare to hear on a debut album.

You feel like you’re in good hands throughout the extent of the eleven songs. He raises a curiosity. Like peeking into someone’s diary where some of the letters and names have been crossed out. So you listen to the song again, because human nature tells us to continue looking for answers. So many questions answered with even more questions. The fine line of delivering to satisfy and connect with the listener while engaging and still leaving them with questions and want for more. He knows how to walk it.

Article by Flipse Flebo

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Soren Bryce

Emerging Artists, News, Pop

17th April 2016

Singer-songwriter Soren Bryce went to LA when she was 16, later she raised over $10,000 on PledgeMusic and recorded her debut EP produced by David Kahne (Lana Del Rey, Ingrid Michaelson) which was released last year. The woman is 19, and just reading her short biography leaves you a little breathless.

Soren has a luxurious and rich sound, but that doesn’t negate the haunting authenticity. Build around simple chords, and a vocal that is hard to ignore, you’re invited into the mind of a young woman. It would be a shame to compare her because she has, after all, an already determined sound at such a young age, but if you’re into anything remotely related to Marina and the Diamonds, her self-titled EP is worth a listen.

“I walk the line / between the fight / between the innocent and the riots” she sings on the stunning ‘Sirens’. The production is wisely simple, there’s nothing to prevent you from paying attention to the lyrics and vocals which more often than not happens for up-and-coming artists.

Genre-wise she’s a getting around. Surprisingly, this is only what makes her EP stand stronger. Again, the simple production becomes the red thread throughout an adventurous extended play, where the artist is allowed to try new things without falling under the classically “confused sound universe” category.

‘Stick it’ is just as different as the rest, but I can’t help but have a flashback to early Imogen Heap days, and no bad words about that fantastic lady, (and this might be a bold statement) but Soren’s got a production behind her that carries the skewed universe and quirks far better.

Bryce is hard to put a label on, and I think ultimately if she carries on the way she has begun, she will be carving a brand new category or two for herself.

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mattcorbytelluric

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Album review: Matt Corby // Telluric

Editors Choice, News, Pop

25th March 2016

After a couple of years of silence, the Aussie returns with his long-awaited debut album Telluric. And it was a wait worthwhile. Many were hoping that the five EPs he has under his belt, could predict any sort of direction he would take on his debut LP, but if you were hoping for something similar, you’re definitely going to be disappointed.

The meaning of the word Telluric is “an electric current which moves underground or through the sea”. The tempo and feel of the album circles and twirls steadily away, making restrained stops for you to catch your breath before continuing onwards. Current or no current, Matt’s is steering his debut ship in the direction he wants to discover.

“Stood in the corner when we would fight / to act upon a line and hang my shit up out to dry.” He smoothly sings on the soothing and indulgent opening track ‘Belly Side Up’. The slow pace of the record starts here and it doesn’t change much throughout the album.  (I refrain from using the word current again but it’s so cunning and cleverly used by Matt himself.)

There are continuing moments of what appears as ambivalent, but what seem to come effortlessly to Matt might be actually meticulously thought out. We just don’t know, and that’s what makes it exciting. For Mac DeMarco fans and in particular listeners of Salad Days, Telluric would be something to dig into.

Paces are kept at a low and mellow speed, from the choirs and clapping on the simplistic ‘Monday’ to the wholesome psychedelic jazz atmosphere on ‘Sooth Lady Wine’. There is a diary-like form to the songs, representing chapters or emotional difficulties you come across in life. The most lifted and upbeat song of the bunch, is the soulful ‘Why Dream’ where Matt discloses “Just to be like you, but you talk too much to listen / and I want you more, and we are meant to be broken / and I forgive warmly, when you’ve got a change of heart.”

Matt Corby’s voice is something you cannot avoid addressing. From his long-forgotten Australia Idol moments, this man has grown vocally as well as in years. The control he possesses, the way a word can bear one meaning in a song and change in the next is outstanding. He’s far from face amongst the crowd when you hear his voice.

The end of Telluric is where we find the hypnotic ‘Empire Attractions’. He asks, “Something’s got to shape us / Boredom’s going to shape us / something’s got to shake us out of this and save us /how can they save you if they can’t help themselves?” Matt’s got vision and we need not worry about where his vision lies in terms of his music. It’s like he has taken the book of soul music, dusted it off, and left his own notes in the margin.

Article by Flipse Flebo

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aurora

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Album review: AURORA // All My Demons Greeting Me As A Friend

News, Pop, Singer/Songwriter

17th March 2016

Aurora Aksnes explains her album in one sentence, “My album, it’s mainly about how bad experiences can be good memories.” And despite the dark pop delving into the melancholic spectra of songwriting, there is still a feeling of seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, in the debut album of the 19-year-old Norwegian.

It starts off with the tranquil first single of the album, ‘Runaway’ where she sings “And I was running far away / would I run off the world someday? / Nobody knows.” But it steps up the strength in ‘Conqueror’ with big drums and an even bigger lyrical surroundings. And you would be deaf not to notice a pinch of Florence + The Machine reminiscing in between the beats.

AURORA plays around with the elements of the earth and the corresponding elements of light – or the lack thereof. In particular, with the song ‘Running With The Wolves’ she dances gracefully on the right side of the lines. It never engages too much with the heavy melancholy that can drain the life of a song, it keeps a subtle grip on lightness and anticipation which gently knocks on the door for the duration of the album.

‘Through The Eyes Of A Child’ shows a very honest young woman, but with great perception of the world around her, and inside of her. “World is covered by our trails / scars we cover up with paint / watch them preach in sour lies / I would rather see this world through the eyes of a child.” If this were the 90s, AURORA would be the kind of artist you would pull out the booklet of the CD for, and read every lyric on the album. There’s substance to her, and the term an old soul trapped in a young body seem very fitting.

She manages to bring the listener aboard her ship, and it’s a boat you don’t want to get off of. We get to see the world through a pair of spectacles, a reality painted with the words of a fairytale; anecdotes that tell the unsweetened and sometimes unkind truths while remaining hopeful. On both ‘Murder Song 5, 4, 3, 2, 1” and ‘Warrior’ there’s a sincereness in which Aurora spills her realities. She has been playing the piano since childhood, and it shows, because it is by far the piano-driven songs that are her forte.

She might be singing she’s running away, but AURORA is running towards something quite special with her debut album. If this is what she delivers at just 19, even our universe will not limit her.

(Social Media photography by Nicecleanwhite)

Article by Flipse Flebo

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