The power of pop is taking the emotions, thoughts, fears and hopes of the moment and packaging them into something catchy an audience can latch onto and vibe with.
Zach Hurst is proving to be an expert at this. He pens his tracks with the struggles of the last 18 months fresh in his mind. His last last hit, ‘2020’, was a cheeky attack on the year we’d rather forget. Now, he’s back with a more sensitive take on ‘Falling In Love On My Own’.
Even if you’ve run the gauntlet of online dating and found someone special to chat with, it just hasn’t been the same recently. Kept apart, a special spark is missing. The magic of falling for someone is a totally virtual experience. Zac taps into this odd frustration with pop balladry, creating a tune that’s sincere, delicate and (most importantly) catchy.
He’s helped on by soft synth pulses on the chorus, snappy strumming on the bridges and sticking rigidly to a tried and true song structure.
Writing songs for the self-isolating generation should be easy for Zac. He’s made the most of being stuck at home, live streaming with Tom Grennan and Sam Harvey in an effort to give fans the authentic experience. This track is just another example of connecting with audiences over the problems of the here and now – and at least giving them something sweet to listen to.
Bloom is the new single by Kyiv-based rock band In Signs that introduces a much darker-edged sound and looks to build on the worldwide airplay of their previous single, Knock Knock. Having recently expanded their number to include a full-time drummer, In Signs have also moved to a new studio and the changes to their sound are evident on Bloom, which shimmers with tension amongst shadowy atmospheric synths and guitars before exploding into a yearning chorus.
“The song Bloom was created and finalised a few months ago when the most-strict lockdown was in Kyiv. ‘Bloom’ is a little bit darker than the others and this will be a reminder of that time for us.
‘I wrote the song a few years ago but now it’s time to release it. I didn’t change the lyrics but somehow they feel in the right place now. This song was written long ago, before the quarantine but it now feels like “Bloom’ is about covid. I wrote it in bad times, I felt so empty that I just can’t have a normal conversation with friends. I faced misunderstanding and lies. I was very angry and I wrote ‘Bloom’ in a very short time. This song is very emotional to me and I hope that In Signs can carry across the idea of it.”
The new single from Jade – ‘Hey Babe‘ – talks about the disposable nature of love and the shallow frivolity of a man’s seduction tactics, and his obvious unawareness of the queen he is trying to approach. The track is consumed by a blend of sultry jazz notes, classic melodies and pop and hip-hop features. For an artist that refuses to take no for an answer, this track is indicative of her confidence and style and refusal to accept less than what’s deserved.
The Takezo Remix and Steff Garner Remix for the track are out 23rd April.
Having made her name as a fearless entrepreneur in the world of fashion and textiles, Moss’ music career looks to continue the trend, wowing audiences with her mix of nostalgia, glamour and attitude.
At the age of 18, Jade traded her hometown in Yorkshire for the heart of London, determined to make her mark. She unleashed her creative soul in designing clothes and even opened her own boutiques, travelling the world and taking inspiration from everywhere she went. Her designs have featured in major high street stores as well as huge online retailers, mixing old retro design with colourful contemporary fashions to create a look entirely her own. She has brought this mindset to her music, already aware of her raw and unique singing voice, Jade rediscovered her true purpose after the birth of her daughter, Blue.
“The music that I write is about my experiences with love, joy, strength and the importance of self-worth”.
Influenced by Etta James, Grace Jones, Lauren Hill and many more, the catchy melodies and lyrics that stuck in Jade’s head translated well when recording her songs. Her style is described as an eclectic arty mix-up between the ’80s and 1940s, giving off retro vibes. This original sound brings her emotional, real-life heartbreak stories to life with warm jazzy vocals that hug the soul.
‘Hey Babe’ is written by Jade, composed by Milano based musician Etto and arranged and mixed by Vito de Luca from Aeroplane in Brussels. The song is featured on the upcoming EP Only you to be released on GlaGlaRecords in April this year.
Based in Norwich, UK, Ryan Soanes’ pop-punk/emo albumThe Journeyhas already been getting a great response from his ardent fanbase and beyond. He’s now to release one of the stand-out tracks Call My Name as a single, along with a suitably atmospheric video. Combining synths and guitars to create a sound which is both melodic and powerful, Ryan’s lyrics really set him apart from the crowd, capturing his inner thoughts and making them really resonate. Diagnosed as autistic as a child, his music is both a way to express himself and a way of helping others cope with mental health issues of their own.
Happy to create music which doesn’t neatly fit into the pop pigeonhole but still making music that is thrillingly catchy and commercial despite retaining a rock edge, Ryan Soanes is a true music obsessive. Dedicated to creating songs to help raise awareness of mental health issues such as depression and anxiety, his recently released album The Journey raised money for the charity Samaritans. A way of giving back to his friends, family and supporters who helped him through difficult times, he wants his tracks to provide inspiration and escape for people also needing help. Ryan describes the story behind ‘Call My Name’ in his own words:
“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”.
Glasgow-based duo der Mist have been readying themselves for the release of their self-titled album all year. On the 26th of February, listeners were gifted with the unique amalgamation of genres that make up the album, featuring elements of pop, rock, indie, electronic and new wave elements.
der Mist is Craig McKissick and Ali Whitty, both based in Glasgow, Scotland, and equipped with impressive multi-instrumental skills that give the band an enlarged sound as though there were 3 or 4 members, rather than 2. Previously in Crash My Model Car (signed to V2 Records) and Augusta Fireball, Ali found Craig through a local charity he set up which looked to help young musicians – this certainly proved to be the case as the pair decided to avoid the trappings of a traditional four-piece and use the combination of their musical and technical skills. Ironically, COVID-lockdowns proved to catalyse their work effort, making them even more committed to avoiding gimmicks and fake methodology to show the real people behind the music and the process of making it by using social media and vlogs on their Youtube channel to speak directly to fans.
The lead track, ‘It’s Alright’, which was released on the 15th January, was an inebriating concoction of indie rock found through experimentation with pop formulas, sensitively positive lyrics and some awesome guitar riffs. But the upbeat tempo and mix of synths add texture to the track and prove that there is plenty of room for guitars and electronic production to coexist.
The brilliant accompanying video, released on 22nd January, captures the energy, passion and positivity of the band, echoing some of the giants of 80s synth-pop like Duran Duran whilst containing rock elements influenced by the artists’ favourite rock bands, such as Pixies. This is most definitely a track to be blasting throughout the day; the lyrics are pertinent and reflective of the time we live in, imploring a positive mental attitude and assuring one that things will be alright. Whether you’re on your daily walk, cleaning your room or some kind of seemingly menial task – this is a track to inject some required positivity into your day.
Craig explains the genesis of the track:
“It’s Alright was the first track Ali worked on with me when I was 16 that I can distinctly remember having this feeling that we were on to something – that’s why it’s the debut track. Like a lot of tracks on the album, it went through so many versions. I remember at one point it had so much going on, I was getting carried away layering up sounds trying to turn it into a drum ‘n’ bass dance track. After hearing it, Ali swiftly decided we had to go back to basics and get the core elements of the demo and turn them into something better.
Some elements from my outrageous version are still in there, but my favourite part of the process was recording the guitar solo. We had so much fun trying to channel our inner 80’s child (even though I wasn’t born then), trying to get something unique and fresh but also something that evokes that nostalgic feeling. Lyrically the track harkens back to the uncertainty I and I’m sure a lot of people had growing up and just having the confidence to tell yourself everything is going to be ok. And yes there is a reference to Kool and the Gang’s ‘Get Down On It’ in there, why not!“
The 14-track masterpiece is teeming with catchy, charming lyrics and upbeat instrumentals that make the album full of fun and positivity; even the structure of the album is audibly appealing as tracks effortlessly lead into one another. However, it is the interlude that caught my attention, because ‘From the Inside Out’ slows things down a little bit as the lyrics are sadder, and instead of electric guitar we hear bells and Spanish guitar notes mixing together in a way that is contemplative and hopelessly romantic.
“Tearing me apart,
From the inside out.”
der Mist – From The Inside Out.
And this is not the only exploration of musical formulae, ‘Life is Flashing’ combines elements of spoken word and stylistically paced hip-hop motifs.
The final track on the album is ‘Connected’, and the opening reminded me of I Can See Through You by The Horrors. However, it drifts into a different direction that make it the perfect conclusion for the album.
“We are taking it to the top,
We aren’t going to take it no more.”
der Mist – Connected.
Overall, the album is an intoxicating blend of albums, coming together in a way that is almost anarchist in its lawless disregard for sticking to one genre and contains lyrics that are rebellious yet optimistic. In a year of confinement and authority, the duo fights back against the normative in a way that incites hope and amplifies the need for self-expression.
der Mist lifts the lid on every aspect of their lives as real musicians (vegan, teetotal musicians, no less!), leaving their forthcoming album to speak for itself.
Keep up with der Mist and their upcoming releases here:
Nickita, singer and experienced doula, is set to release a single titled “Breathe Again” on the 14th March 2021, Mother’s Day no less. Prior to the release date, she has unveiled an emotive music video to emphasise the strength of the pregnant female and the amazing work that midwives do. All proceeds for the single will go directly to the fundraising effort by her organisation, When Push Comes to Shove, in order to help mothers and midwives make safe and educated decisions during all points of their pregnancy and birth.
“A mother’s choice is a choice alone,
No need to caress what you don’t control,
It’s in her hands,
She’s not broken.”
The video depicts an array of women expressing their truths and desire to be heard, demonstrating their strength and determination through their pregnancies and providing love for their families. Women hold up signs with statements such as ‘we will breathe again’, ‘I want to be heard’ and ‘birth choices matter.’ The array of clips from women underpin the poignant message behind the video and come together in a moving medley that demonstrates just how vital midwives are. Those moments of the miracle of childbirth draw focus to the chosen charity but are so emotionally charged that it truly emphasises the bond created between mother and child during childbirth and the strength of the female body.
With her extraordinary vocal range and profound lyrics Nickita successfully channels her experiences, both positive and negative, as a woman and a mother to present this sentimental and sincere gift to midwives. The lyrics are sentimental and sincere, emphasising the empowerment that comes with taking back control over your body.
As a woman that has suffered the trauma of a miscarriage, Nickita understands the importance of midwifery after received amazing support and care before and after the birthing process. She felt as though she was able to make decisions about the birth of her second child that the NHS would not allow and vowed to spread awareness on the matter.
“Hold her safe, keep her warm,
Safe from the eye of the patriarch’s storm.”
The IMUK, Independent Midwives for United Kingdom, recently expressed that there is no viable insurance option to allow members to attend births. And in light of the current crisis, the lack of indemnity has become an exacerbated problem that has coincided with an increased demand for the services of midwives as more mothers wish to avoid the hospital during Covid-19 outbreaks. The chair for IMUk, Ms. Tomkins said, “There was a proposal from one company to offer cover, similar to that we had had previously, but the fee was quoted as £7,500 per home birth. As you can appreciate, there was no way this was feasible to accept.”
Nickita has decided to support the Childbirth Choices Matter Campaign, which is run by the maternal and newborn health and rights charity White Ribbon Alliance, by getting midwives back into work and spreading awareness of the “autonomy in childbirth.”
Follow Nickita below and keep up to date on when ‘Breathe Again’ is available to stream:
X-Factor finalist, Melanie Masson has recently released her latest single ‘Seasons’, a unique, old-school style, Northern Soul interpretation of the hit Seasons (Waiting on You) by Future Islands, who have since given praise to Masson, with bassist William Cashion describing her take as “a beautiful version”. This release marks Melanie’s second self-released single, following up on her acclaimed first track ‘Why Don’t You Love Me?’
Worked on by the producer Tristan Longworth who used all live musicians and instruments on the track, Melanie has created a version with much more buoyancy and energy, with powerful, passionate vocals, emphasising her unique and fiery voice.
WATCH MELANIE MASSON’S VIDEO FOR SEASONS:
To accompany this song, Melanie has also released a beautifully moving music video; with vintage effects and an alluring woodland setting, the video really captures Melanie’s original and retro style.
The video was directed by acclaimed Film and TV actress and director Simone Lahbib, who also appears in the music video alongside Melanie’s husband, actor Forbes Masson as well as her children, adding a real personal and moving touch to the video.
Melanie began to catch they eyes and hearts of the nation with her remarkable performance of Janis Joplin’s “Cry Baby”, throwing her heart and soul into her vocals. After gaining millions of hits on Youtube of her first audition, Melanie soared through the X Factor rounds to the live finals. Her old-fashioned blues style and charming, darling personality gained her respect and admiration from fans all across the world.
“I loved the melody and lyrics to Seasons and really connected to it. It felt very reflective yet optimistic and that’s the mood I wanted to create for the video. I wanted to send out a positive message. It feels like we’re all in the same challenging situation right now. We all have our struggles, our ups and down but there’s always hope. It’s about hanging on to what’s important, taking strength from that and holding onto the belief that better days are coming. It’s a message to everyone to hang on in there.”
Growing up in Glasgow, Melanie started performing from a very young age. With her parents being performers themselves, she got to first train at her parents’ stage school, studying music and dance, before going on to train and earn a degree in Music and Drama at Queen Margaret University in Edinburgh. Singing in venues all over Scotland from an early age, Melanie has never been shy of the spotlight and continues to show this with her confident and moving performances.
Having previously worked as a solo recording artist on EMI records and a session singer, she has toured all over the world and performed alongside the likes of Pink and Stereophonics.
To keep updated with Melanie’s future releases, follow her social media:
After creating a name for herself in the word of fashion and design with her unique, vintage and vibrant style, Jade Moss has taken inspiration from her expertise and mixed it into her music.
With glamorous and retro tones mixed together, ‘Hey Babe’ fuses elements from classic jazz and pop to create a wistful and romantic sound that shows her fearless and defining attitude.
A bold and iconic entrepreneur in the the fashion industry, Jade unveiled her creativity in designing clothes after moving to the heart of London from her home in Yorkshire at the young age of 18.
Opening up her own boutiques and travelling the world in the process, she’s picked up inspiration at every destination, which has helped her designs find success in both high street fashion stores and online retailers.
Her own individual and imaginative style she has created has shown in her music as well. With a powerful and soulful voice, she has put together a song with charm and mystique, singing about true love in the cold world we live in.
It’s catchy and groovy with an old school elegance to it; having been described as an artistic combination of 80’s and 40’s music, ‘Hey Babe’ is a sentimental track that’ll have you singing along.
“The music that I write is about my experiences with love, joy, strength and the importance of self-worth”.
Listen to ‘Hey Babe’ here:
Inspired by artists such as Etta James, Grace Jones and Lauren Hill, Jade has created a neo-vintage pop song filled with emotion and passion.
With the help of Milan-based musician Etto who composed the song and Vito de Luca from Aeroplane who did the arranging and mixing, ‘Hey Babe’ is one that will be featured on Jade’s upcoming EP ‘Only you’, set to be released on GlaGlaRecords in April this year.
To keep track of what Jade will be releasing, follow her on social media:
Leif Coffield is ready to share his new electro-pop masterpiece to the world. On February 5th he will release his newest single ‘Say My Name’, a boundary-breaking, dark tune that he hopes will attract the attention of a much wider audience.
Being one that likes to stand out from the mainstream, Coffield created this stunning song by combining elements of hip-hop, acoustic and electronic music in an exciting and exhilarating way.
Inspired by artists such as Kanye West, Bon Iver and Flume, Coffield is hoping to be recognised as one of the UK’s most innovative and thrilling electro-pop artists in the genre.
Accompanying the track, Leif Coffield is set to release an artistic, minimalist music video set in a run down council flat, with dramatic choreography showing his intrigue in brutalist imagery.
If you’d like to keep up to date with Leif Coffield’s new releases, follow his social media below:
Pakistan-born singer-songwriter SHK, has released an anthem for all with his new song ‘Undefeated’, A lyrical motivation for everyone to follow their dreams.
Now living in Reading, England, SHK has taken inspiration from a very unlikely source. With his main passions alongside music being poetry, spirituality, self-reformation, and martial arts, SHK takes inspiration from this combination to create an upbeat, empowering tune, which is sure to motivate listeners.
Alongside this track, SHK has released an inspired music video with symbols to strength and power throughout:
One of his biggest inspirations for this song was his admiration for Russian mixed-martial artist, Khabib Nurmagomedov, who has remained undefeated in all 28 of his fights. Being one of SHKs personal heroes and having gained legendary status in the world of MMA, Nurmagomedov has remained a devoted and dedicated Muslim throughout.
“I have been really inspired by his hard-work, skills, integrity, discipline and unconquerable spirit. I think he is a great role-model for any professional, especially for Muslims”
The pop-rock tune is catchy and uplifting, with a memorable melody and sing-along chorus that has a deeply embedded life lesson presented lyrically. ‘Unbeatable’ portrays the message to always be true to yourself and overcome any obstacles that may come forth.
If you’d like to hear more from SHK, follow his social media’s below: