Writing this post, I’m definitely full of a mix of emotions. On the one hand, I’m so excited and happy to share another great track by Bruno Major, especially considering it marks the end of an incredibly difficult challenge he set for himself (writing, recording and releasing a new song every month for a year), and also sharing the collection of the aforementioned tracks in the form of his debut album, A Song for Every Moon. No matter what other artists have done over the last year, I could always count on an excellent offering from Bruno Major that without fail ended up on my list of top songs for that month. I placed Bruno Major at number 6 of my Artists to Watch for 2017, and he hasn’t disappointed. In fact, his output has been the most consistently outstanding out of any artist I can think of. Which brings me to why I’m sad to be posting about his album closer, On Our Own. I’m bummed I don’t have any more tracks from Bruno to look forward to in the coming months. On top of that, while “On Our Own” is absolutely gorgeous, it’s also devastating, as he sings above a simple piano and an orchestra about his mother’s turn to faith after the death of her mother and his questioning of that notion. Listening to the heartbreaking (although sometimes hopeful) lyrics and melancholy music is enough to bring a tear to your eye. While hopefully it won’t be too long before we hear from him again, he’s definitely going out on a high note: sharing the song he’s most proud of last. So, with all of that said, it’s a bittersweet moment to share the finale to Bruno’s year long opus, “On Our Own”. Listen to it below and make sure to catch the rest of the collection, out today.
As I mentioned recently in a post, I’m going to be making more of an effort to post about artists after their debut tracks. In general I like to get a feel for an artist beyond a single song before I know if I’m going to like them or not, but some debuts are too good to pass up, which is the case with today’s new name, Oscar Oscar. The fairly enigmatic Australian producer has recently signed to Majestic Casual and a while back shared his first ever track, Hey Ho, an extremely complex and intricate first offering. Despite him having a few reference points with other contemporary producers (I hear hints of James Blake and Mura Masa), Oscar Oscar is clearly cultivating a sound that is unique. His interesting use of instrumentation, samples, and sparse vocals come together to make disparate components feel cohesive instead of just a wall of sound. Although this is only his first release, he clearly is proving himself an artist to watch and I’m looking forward to seeing what he’s capable of. Check out “Hey Ho” below and get on board with Oscar Oscar.
Although I haven’t featured her on the blog yet (primarily because she doesn’t need support from a small blog like this one), I’ve been following Jorja Smith since the release of her debut track “Blue Lights” last year which took the music world by storm. Since then she’s been incredibly prolific, releasing a large handful of singles as well as her debut EP, Project 11. What makes Jorja Smith so special is her amazing voice; she sounds so smooth and effortless on everything she does. What makes that even more impressive is how she continues to try all kinds of different sounds, with one of the most radical being her recently released collaboration with Preditah, On My Mind. While Smith usually backs her vocals with low key R&B or hip hop beats, this time it’s an all out garage banger courtesy of Preditah. It’s one of the catchiest songs I’ve heard this year and leaves me more and more impressed with how versatile she is. While Preditah is a new name for me, with this track alone he’s become someone for me to look into more as the beat he produces here is instantly danceable. Look for more in the future from Jorja Smith and Preditah, and in the meantime, enjoy “On My Mind” below (or click HERE if you don’t have Spotify).
If you’re not already following Swedish singer LÉON‘s rise to stardom, make sure you get on board now! Over the past few years, she has steadily increased her following with every release. She has continually shown depth of sound and scope as she tackles all facets of pop music with aplomb. She’s so far had an incredible 2017, releasing her excellent For You EP in March, containing one of my favorite songs of last year, “Liar”, as well as quickly following that up with “Surround Me” last month (check out my post HERE). Amazingly, she’s already back with the throwback sounding Body. It’s a sound we haven’t yet heard from LÉON, seemingly ripped right from the ’60s. Like usual, it’s her incredible vocal performance that makes the track so special. Based on the frequency of releases, I’m hoping that LÉON is ramping up to something. Check out “Body” below (or click HERE if you don’t have Spotify) and be on the look out for more music soon!
It’s almost getting hard to keep up with Anna of the North as they have been consistently releasing incredible tracks for the last several months leading up to their debut album, Lovers. If you’re interested, check out a few of their previous releases, including “Lovers“, “Someone“, and “Money“. Last week the duo shared another taste of the album, Fire, which takes a more upbeat, danceable vibe than most of the previous work. That being said, their signature bouncy synths, bubbly production, and floating vocals are all present in spades, but with a more tropical sound than we’re used to hearing from them. It’s just further proof that they’re adept at every facet of pop music they attempt and builds more anticipation for Lovers, being released on September 8th. Check out “Fire” below and keep an eye open for their debut in the next few weeks!
BETSY is having an absolutely banner 2017 so far. She has successfully built off the momentum she developed last year with a string of impeccable singles that continue to grow her depth as an artist (see my posts for Waiting and Little White Lies if you’re interested). I named her as one of my top 5 artists to watch for this year and she has absolutely delivered. With her debut self-titled album dropping at the end of next month, anticipation for more BETSY music has never been higher. Enter her just released single, You Won’t Love Me, which sees BETSY at her most stripped back and vulnerable yet. Simple piano followed by cinematic strings lay the groundwork for BETSY’s one of a kind voice to soar above, grabbing the spotlight like it deserves. BETSY’s debut is shaping up to be one of my favorite debuts and albums in general of the year and I can’t wait to see how the rest of it sounds in just a short while longer! Check out “You Won’t Love Me” below (or click HERE if you don’t have Spotify) and look for BETSY’s self titled debut album on September 29th!
I’m so happy to have new music from Jadu Heart. At the end of last year I placed them at number 2 of my Artists to Watch for 2017 and as the months continued to quickly go by without hearing from them, I was getting a little anxious about what was going on. They released two of my favorite EPs of last year, the incredible Wanderflower and Ezra’s Garden, which while in general share a similar sonic landscape, were beautiful experiments in different sounds. Thankfully, after a long wait, Jadu Heart have finally returned with their excellent new single, I’m A Kid. Upon my first listen, I was surprised to see how much more straightforward the melody and song structure were, as well as how the vocals cut through, and it seemed as though the duo were changing up their signature vibe. However, when you dig a little deeper, it becomes clear that although they’re trying their hand at a more accessible sound, the hazy guitars and distorted synths that made their music so distinct is very much still present. It seems to me that this is the kind of single that will pull more people into their music and really help them continue to gain traction. In my mind, this single definitely delivers on the potential they showed throughout last year and I can’t wait to see what they do next. Check out “I’m A Kid” below.