iLana Armida’s Summertime Love shimmers and shines

iLana Armida proves herself once again as a master of smooth, summery pop music. Fresh off of writing for Doja Cat’s smash hit album Planet Her, her new single Summertime Love continues to prove her ear for pop music. In this case, she once again brings the smooth, summery vibes to create an inviting love song.

iLana’s breathy, soothing vocals perfectly match the airy synths and light beat, crafting a perfect song to evoke a blissful summer day. iLana is, of course, the master of this formula, having racked up 7.6 million Spotify plays on songs she co-wrote. Her choice to remain an independent artist, like other artists like Tinashe, has allowed her to create every aspect of her artistry – including by mixing cultural influence. The label system, traditionally bad at handling any mix of styles (see the aforementioned Tinashe as an example), probably would not know how to handle her mix of influences from around the globe. iLana herself is of mixed heritage, and her ability to stay ambiguous culturally and take influence from everywhere serves to create a welcoming sonic environment for all.

In her words, “I sing songs that incorporate multiple languages and genres purposefully so that people of all cultures and backgrounds and ethnicities can feel connected to the music…I want everyone to feel accepted and united.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ILanaArmidaMusic/ 
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ilanaarmida/ 
Website: https://www.ilanaarmida.com/ 
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/6PDaXT74VFMuRIofqSq4R5?si=W8jkSwWfTM2mfjsgUY7r0Q

Words by Jacob Rousu


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Alan Dweck’s remaster of ‘Before’ reflects his eclectic influences

London-based artist Alan Dweck returns with a remaster of a song from his last album, ‘Entangled Moments’. The song (and especially the remaster) reflect Dweck’s vast variety of influences, both musical and from his travels around the world. Years after his band became one of the first western ones to tour Eastern Europe after the fall of the Berlin Wall, his diverse array of international influences continue to seep into his work. His Blues, Jazz, and Progressive roots all come through on the track, which he has called his ‘tribute to some of the great blues and soul songs of the past’.

The track itself is an incredibly touching slice of his music. The fresh mix reemphasizes the strengths of the original while breathing new life into the track. His ever poignant lyrics continue to touch the hearts of his listeners across the world, while the instrumentals fill the listener with vivid images of their own.

“Alan Dweck paints visceral imagery through his music. Narrative driven, at times almost theatrical nod to piano driven cinematic soundscapes and acoustic guitar licks spliced with Progressive, Jazz and Blues. Alan has always pursued a symbiotic combination of the sonic and visual arts.”

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Words by Jacob Rousu


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“The Fabulous Red Diesel” share an electric live performance in video for “Mama Josie Said”

The Fabulous Red Diesel have outdone themselves. The four-piece band, in releasing their new single “Mama Josie Said”, have decided to share a music video featuring their acclaimed live show at Brighton Fringe. The song itself is, of course, smooth, laid-back, and stunning, but the group’s performances are out of this world. Mixing trapeze, modern dance, and projections with their music leads to an incredible experience.

The group, made up of husband-and-wife team Ms. Kitty (vocals, keys, flute) and Duke Bloom (drums), transgender musician Miss Bea-Have (double bass, tuba, trumpet), and Rabbi Jaffa Delicious (guitar and trumpet), create a song and performance environment that stand out completely as uniquely “Fabulous Red Diesel”. On the topic of the song’s lyrics, Ms. Kitty said “The theory is that when you raise your own vibration, it affects everyone around you, they want to raise theirs, by doing what they love and finding peace.”

The Fabulous Red Diesel will be performing their live show “Sparkly Bird” various Pop Up Theaters (including ones at Broomgrove Estate and The Stade, Hastings for the Coastal Current Arts Festival) free of charge, emphasizing their belief that live music should be available to everyone.

SHOWS:
Frome Festival– 08/07/21 
Green Gathering –30/07/21, 01/08/21
Sparkly Bird Pop Up Theatre – Broomgrove Estate, 11/08/21
Rye Jazz Festival (Jazz/Funk Day) – Supporting Incognito and Courtney Pine,28/08/21
Sparkly Bird Pop Up Theatre – The Stade Hastings 11/09/21

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/FabRedDiesel
Twitter: https://twitter.com/fabreddiesel
Instagram: instagram.com/fabreddiesel
Website: www.thefabulousreddiesel.com, www.sparklybird.co.uk
Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/thefabulous-reddiesel
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/0hnu3Gtr7Br22o5Hw3Fw8C
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCPKRBUOx9IVfgX5tuoZqZRg

Words by Jacob Rousu


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Purple Glass’s “Laundering Diamonds” takes a deep look at society

Welsh noise rock and industrial band Purple Glass have returned with their new single Laundering Diamonds, a single that looks at often overlooked aspects of society. Members Evan Davies and Randell Denning craft a single that, while clear in its purpose, never talks down to the listener and allows them to draw their own conclusions. The duo, who are currently working on an album, use this single to show what they do best.

The duo allows the vocals and lyrics to be front and center in this song, leaning on the simpler side for the riff/rhythms. This is not to say those are weaker by any means – by contrast, the simplicity of the riffs allows them to become universal, bringing forth visions of dancing in mosh pits. This song scratches an itch of sorts that very few bands really do, making this an easy recommendation for any fan of acts like Nine Inch Nails.

The group aims to “represent where we believe is a lack of experimental yet, concise rock music in the guise of the noise and industrial subgenres on the radio and we believe our music represents a gap in the market and what we ourselves enjoy listening to. We provide thought provoking social commentary that doesn’t ask you to pick a side merely to understand the nuances of situations and events and come to your own conclusions.” 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PurpleGlass666
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/0WeahY2Fhz4vMyS4IVAO8Z?
si=EmMMtMfJSwSe4uHsRuOarg&dl_branch=1
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCB8SsFIcJW9dN4ny4pG489w/featured


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Second orchestral album “String Theory” from A Flock of Seagulls is a new spin on classic songs

A Flock of Seagulls, the decade defining synthpop and new wave band, are back on August 20th with their second orchestral album String Theory after 2018’s Ascension. This album, once again, features the Prague Orchestra (among others) to add new instrumental backing to 11 new recordings of classics and fan favorites. The album, like Ascension, features all four original members, including lead vocalist and hairdresser Mike Score, his brother drummer Ali Score, fellow hairdresser and bassist Frank Maudsley, and guitarist Paul Reynolds.

From their genre codifying hit singles such as “I Ran (So Far Away)” to their distinctive visuals that were constantly played on MTV to lead singer Mike Score’s outrageous haircut, all of which are referenced in pop culture to this day, the group helped make the 1980’s what they were aesthetically. The group, interestingly enough, continues to examine what their classic songs would sound like in a more timeless format.

The answer is largely that the songs, including “Say You Love Me”, “Messages”, “The More You Live, The More You Love”, “Remember David” and “The Story of A Young Heart”, gain a new coat of paint that only enriches the already well loved tracks. This is a lovely gift to hardcore fans and casual enjoyers of their hits alike.

Soundcloud: soundcloud.com/aflockofseagulls 
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCcluFtLtRzipm7CdtERnceA
Facebook: facebook.com/seagullsrunning 
Twitter: twitter.com/seagullsrunning 
Instagram: instragram.com/seagullsrunning
Website: www.aflockofseagulls.org

Words by Jacob Rousu


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LearningToDive’s “You Said it Best” is a peaceful reflection on home

After releasing his acclaimed album “Norwegian Pop” earlier this year, LearningToDive is back with a much more introspective song. Bravo Bonez, the one behind the LearningToDive project, wrote the song for the 80’s pop and post-punk inspired album, but realized that it was unique enough to merit its own moment as a standalone single. The song’s atmospheric yet sparse sound, mixing genres like country and sophisti-pop, makes the song as gorgeous and meaningful as it is.

The song itself is a reflection on being united with family. Bonez’s longing performance, along with Alba Rose’s otherworldly backing vocals, help to underscore the song’s message of wanting to return to a life left behind. The song’s video provides an interesting lens into this – it was filmed in Ocean Sound Recording Studio, the Norwegian studio where the album was recorded, far away from his loved ones. The song has elements of melancholy, but it provides a sense of hope.

About the song, Bonez said that “‘You Said It Best’ is an uplifting, heartwarming message incorporating themes of self-acceptance, forgiveness and gratitude, and is about coming back to one’s roots and working out what really matters.”

Website: http://learning2dive.com/ 
Email: learningtodive@gmail.com 
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/learningtodive/?hl=en 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/learningtodive/ 
Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/user-718196749 
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCf4AaCSYnX748ZBHmqFrzpg
Spotify:https://open.spotify.com/artist/63TsRGNIoI5mNK2s4BDjuP?si=5TytUWvuRWGtuQ5ToCK0 PA 
BandCamp: https://learningtodivemusic.bandcamp.com/ 
Linktree: https://linktr.ee/puresound

Words by Jacob Rousu


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Big Smile Revival’s The Universal Veil is a psychedelic must-listen

Teeming with classic “in your face” rock energy, psychedelia, and folklore, Big Smile Revival’s new EP The Universal Veil is essential listening for any rock fan. The three members, including lead vocalist Steve Hymas, drummer Matt Rowcliffe, and bassist Edvard G. Till, have a passion for everything from legends and tales of the past to modern issues like environmentalism and mental health, and that comes through in their music. In addition to the storytelling and themes of their music, Edvard has synesthesia, which helps the band write songs that not only reflect a certain sound, but a colour and taste.

The four track EP (out July 2nd) stands as a fascinating and unique slice of rock, combining influences of 60’s rock and grunge to create an otherworldly body of work. In particular, their newest single “The Helm” (out June 25th), a song with immaculate guitar work and unpredictable, transfixing melodies. The song’s last two minutes, in particular, feature a climatic, soaring instrumental break to finish off the track with a sense of release.

The band said in a statement that they “write from experience and truly want to share our stories and melodies with audiences everywhere”, and it’s hard not to get caught up in these stories and melodies. “The Helm” and The Universal Veil are must listens.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BigSmileRevival 
Twitter: https://twitter.com/BigSmileRevival 
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/bigsmilerevival/ 
Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/big-smile-revival/big-smile-revival-the-universal-veil-04-the-helm
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/00PLpOSuFJxpcoa2E3sNuw 
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCh1FhxT4-_DLbswPbgrWJUw

Words by Jacob Rousu


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Punt Guns rewrite the rules of Rock

Cyber Rock band Punk Guns are back and as daring as ever. The band’s founding members, bassist and lead vocalist Marek Bero and guitarist Giampaolo Guarnieri, are joined by two new members, drummer Dan Western and guitarist, producer, and “synth maestro” Jiri Novotny, for these new releases. The band ties together a vast array of influences, from the classical, baroque, Balkan and Slavic music from their travels to directors Argento, Godard, Vadim and Bava to the world of sports (as Giampaolo was a world travelling extreme skier in a past life).

The first taste of their next album, due later this year, is the wild, engrossing new single Nemesis, featuring everything from classic guitar riffs to electronic beats under Sophie Bokor-Ingram’s narration. The song is entirely unique, and wholly Punk Guns to its core. It’s off-kilter and unique blend of sounds and genres is something that does not leave your mind after the song ends.

The band had this to say about the song:

“The main riff and harmonies of the verse came after a coaching session Giampaolo had with Jean-Marc Belkadi during which they worked on Ashkenazi and Russian chords and harmonies. Giampaolo translated such ideas from a standard tuning guitar to his baritone guitar. He played the tune to Jean-Marc who said that it was a “dark & unpredictable” vibe that reminded him of UK gangster style movies. This led Giampaolo to use part of the quote by Alan Ford defining Nemesis in the movie Snatch and use a voice-over actress, Sophie, to narrate it. Jiri started to create hooky electronic elements to the initial draft and Dan recorded drums for the chorus. Marek then laid down a huge bass line and a sick, slapping bass solo together with magical hooky lyrics that worked as a quasi-dialogue with Sophie’s narration. This track offers the “rock pedigree approach” of the band and then climbs to an electronic world reminiscent of the likes of Justice, Goose or Aaron”.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/puntguns 
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/puntgunsband/ 
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/6wpDWFYK17GL9QVmgF1Ncm 
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCVPp66aAcyrvgdyVP79QzsQ

Words by Jacob Rousu


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Aurelia Dey is a “Huntress” in empowering new single

Ghanaian-Swedish artist Aurelia Day continues her string of excellent singles with “Huntress”, a Dancehall infused track themed around woman empowerment. The song’s beat is appealing enough to get anyone moving but unique enough to have lasting power long past the song’s runtime. Dey’s delivery does nothing but enhance the song’s innate swagger. It’s hard not to feel her power in each sneer of “little boy” and the confidence and poise in lines like “you can call me Katniss or Xena warrior princess, if you don’t come over here, I will hunt you down with the spear, grown woman have no fear”.

Dey’s dedication to the female warrior archetype shines through in the song, as does her commitment to inspiring changes in listeners. The song exemplifies a particular form of liberal feminism, both calling back to the warrior archetypes and seeking to empower and lift up all women. The song remains perfectly accessible to all audiences, but with a twist of afrobeat and dancehall.

When asked about the song, Dey called it “perfect for female empowerment boost and norm-breaking stereotypes. It’s about being a huntress – brave and ambitious. Creating a boundary pushing track exuding liberal feminism; breaking gender norms and gender associations. To take command, not only in a relationship, but in any area in a female or non-male life, to claim space. The dancehall beats enhance the funny metaphoric sensual references and the feeling that “I’m in charge”. I want to inspire my listeners to feel and embrace these feelings.”

Check out Aurelia Dey here:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/aureliadeyofficial/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/aureliadeymusic
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/aureliadeyofficial/?hl=sv
Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/miss-relli
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/1eFBWrAF8Vu18ey4zdRqIA?si=0nD_ERzMSy2XS_MM1FDPIg
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLhQJ1KyIJ1KDPxMM2V-o8g
Tik Tok: https://www.tiktok.com/@aureliadeyofficial?lang=sv-SE

Words by Jacob Rousu


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Pop-punk artist Ryan Soanes is a force to be reckoned with

Norwich based artist Ryan Soanes returns with vibrant new album, ‘The Journey‘. Somewhere between pop-punk and emo, the album is youthful but shares lyrical themes that are emotive and mature. A stand out number on the release comes in the form of refreshing single, ‘Call My Name’. Armed with synthesisers and guitar lines that will leave you breathless, the melodic number captures Ryan’s thoughts perfectly. Relatable and able to resonate with millions across the globe, Ryan’s lyrical themes are expressive and human.

Dedicated to creating music that helps raise awareness of mental health issues such as depression and anxiety, Ryan’s been raising money for the charity Samaritans from the album sales. A way to give back to his friends, family and supporters who helped him through difficult times, Ryan Soanes deserves wide recognition.

Describing the story behind “Call My Name”, Ryan states: “the song was originally written years ago before I even released music, it was written as a love song to a girl I was dating at the time, however, in recent times when I decided to rework the song, I had broken up with the girl… this gave the song a whole new meaning and vibe completely, it’s a happy song that went
sad, now the meaning is as followed; the main character is going through / has gone through a breakup and realises their fault, they regret it all and want to reach out to their ex to be on good terms, however they can’t find the words to justify their apology or feelings, the girl refuses to reply or give him another chance (“hello my dear I’m standing here waiting on you / I’m facing my fears waiting on you”), this is a personal experience to me
.”

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RyanSoanesOfficial/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/RyanSoanesMusic
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ryansoanesofficial/
Website: https://ryansoanes.com/
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/18wnNASiae6DWrYowaCy4m?si=LWVmG1mNTJasD6TMHYY_AQ
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/c/RyanSoanesMusic/videos


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