Overcoats’ latest release (who else is jumping up and down?!), is their pop-iest beat to date. And we are so here for it.
The track, “I Don’t Believe In Us” tackles falling out of belief – with a person, a place, or a thing – coming to terms with that realization, and moving on and up. Accompanied by a killer music video conceptualized by the duo and co-directed by Aaron Vasquez and Sinjun Strom, Overcoats shatter our preconceived notions about hitting the floor and picking ourselves up with “I Don’t Believe In Us.”
Hana and JJ comment saying, “The song is about disillusionment. It’s about realizing that a fairytale you’ve been believing your whole life is false. It’s about figuring out what to do with that information — how to move forward.” For a tale of disillusionment, it is surprisingly upbeat and the music video is a monochromatic dream – but that’s the point. Overcoats have a way of subtly guiding us to see outside of our own understanding and of our own identities, without teaching or preaching. Instead, they show up, dust themselves off, and get going – sharing with us that it’s alright to do the same.
“I Don’t Believe In Us” is a wonderful chapter to close out Young because it takes what the duo has learned to question, to explore, to believe and not to believe, and makes these lessons accessible to us all.
Major and minor chords weave along a path lined by trees bursting with red and orange leaves in Night Flight’s “Death Rattle.”
A breakup song through and through, this track from the London-based 5-piece is perfect for a long, contemplative drive. With winter on its way, the season of ends and cold quiet, this song resists the brutal frost, opting for a brisk fall breeze instead.
While the end of a relationship could feel like the end of the world, there’s the other side of the coin that signals a new and better beginning. “Death Rattle” is that warm fall light, a realization that ending things will lead to a breath of crisp, fresh air into the lungs.
“Don’t go wasting your breath on me… better we find a way out, not dwelling on why,” frames the first verse, followed soon by, “I’m not living anymore, baby give me something more.” Laid back drums and a comfortably simple bassline pad the finger-picked guitar part. “Ooh’s” and soft harmonies complete the folksiness of this bittersweet track that basically says that enough is enough, and it is time to move on.
“‘Cause what I want with you is none of your business,” Alicia Bognanno sings in a soft bedroom voice, layered above a repeating and driven guitar riff in the opening verse of “Kills to Be Resistant.”
This release off of Bully’s sophomore album, Losing, is not hard to identify with. The drums in this song lay down a foundation, perfectly mirroring Bognanno as she ebbs between gentle verses tip-toeing around the topic, and choruses riddled with gravel, grit and the pain that comes with accepting circumstances as they are. With just drums and bass to hold the words, Bognanno confesses, “When I’m alone, I stare at your picture,” a habit with which most of us are all too familiar. When the guitar riff comes back in for the bridge, it’s an embodiment of that cyclical, anxious thought process that’s attached to facing an end to or a shift in a relationship.
“It won’t stop / Do you feel nothing?” she asks in the chorus leading into an outro that matches the built-up frustration in the lyrics with dissonant chords and skillfully-played drum fills.
This is all anyone could have hoped for when anticipating new music from Bully. The sound is full, but nowhere near overly-complicated. Every necessary element is there, coming together to sound so effortless and raw. The only thing more to ask for is a ticket to a live performance.
There’s a moment at the end of Kat Cunning’s stunning debut single, “Baby,” when the slowly built layers of engrossing production spin off of Cunning’s voice, exposing her dry vocal. The effect is similar to being pulled out of a party right as it is taking off, and equally as jilting. “Take me home,” she intones. “I forgot my keys again.”
It’s just a few seconds of this solitude that prove that even without the brilliantly complimentary sounds of “Baby” (a cleverly cubist interpretation of reverb, blooming piano and guitar), the wispy threads of Cunning’s voice are just as intoxicating. “Baby” evolves through a gently shifting electropop mantle, allowing different colors of Cunning’s warm, yearning soprano to shine through at each lens change. It’s a debut that manages to embody Cunning’s talents as both a Broadway actress and performance artist along with her penchant for delivering a truly ingraining pop hook.
We can’t wait to see what Cunning has in store for her debut EP, coming early next year. For now, enjoy “Baby” above.
Los Angeles genre-bending artist Moses Sumney released his gorgeous and ethereal debut album Aromanticism into the world this September. Sumney has made a big impression on artists like Solange and Sufjan Stevens for good reason. His infusion of soul and folk come together on this album in a way that leaves us begging for more. A prime example of this heavenly blend is found on the third song of the album, “Plastic.” A previous version of the song can be heard on the first season of Issa Rae’s HBO series, Insecure. This new version serves as one of the more simplistic songs on the album, featuring just a fingerpicked electric guitar, a synth and Sumney’s captivating voice. The hook of the song repeats the line “my wings are made of plastic,” each time sung in a slightly different way than it was before, continuing to imbue the phrase with new meaning. This song of vulnerability, self-awareness and secret-spilling is the kind that you can leave on repeat and get lost in for hours.
Nashville-based Liza Anne Odachowski, better known as Liza Anne strips the covers away from mental illness in her newest single “Paranoia.”Addressing anxiety and themes of unworthiness and unwantedness, Liza Anne explores the underbelly of our fears and pulls them to the surface. Set to a melodic tune that’s punctuated by frenetic outbursts, Liza effortlessly articulates our internal monologue as we experience feelings of love coupled with paranoia. This is exactly her intention, evidenced in her artist bio, where she states, “I feel things deeply and then I sing them sweetly.” And we could not agree more.
Nilüfer Yanya’s voice – pure, powerful, yet just a drop raspy – would carry just about any song. On “Baby Luv,” it’s infectious as the tune starts off stripped-down with Yanya’s words rhythmically driving forward, begging, “do you like pain?”
Don’t we all crave a little bit of pain, in one way or another? After all, it’s almost impossible to love without ending up with bloodied elbows and knees once in awhile, so to speak. This super-raw track is easy but upbeat despite the melancholy sentiments behind the lyrics. It’s impossible not to groove along to the simple percussion and floating synths that fill up the space left in between the coy guitar riff. When the vocal harmonies sneak in just about halfway through the song, the desire and slight despair are suddenly elevated, and dig further underneath your skin.
“Call me sometime,” as it’s repeated in the chorus, is a request often met with silence or empty affirmation in this day and age, and you can hear that in each of the 207 seconds of “Baby Luv.” I’d be surprised if you could listen to this track just once and let it pass. It’s bold in a quiet way, and it’s oh-so catchy. At 22, Yanya’s clearly full of stories, as well as the talent to tell them in beautiful ways.
A glance of the Manhattan skyline can conjure up feelings of immense hope: upon the Hudson, the city lights and skyscrapers sit like sparkling watercolors, rocked gently by inviting waves.
But there comes a moment in every New Yorker’s voyage when the big apple begins to lose its sheen. The day-to-day realities of living begin to exude an inert pull, like an endless subway ride buoyed only by the sight of exorbitant price tags – $5 coffee, overwhelming fatigue, this month’s rent – that cloy at your being. As the blaring sounds and picturesque skyline shine on, and a feeling of distance begins to set in, you have to ask yourself a question about that dream, the one sitting in your periphery, flickering like a ghost.
Is it worth it?
This is the central question of “Somewhere,” the pop chimera unleashed last Friday by fellow city dweller, Pearla (Nicole Rodriguez). Over a glittering music box and with an intimate vocal similar to that of Maggie Rogers, Pearla compares her journey to that of a ship “thrown from wave to wave at the moon’s discretion.” Each verse laments a loss of control over the childlike hope needed to propel ourselves into a future of our own making.
But just as this anxiety winds up, Pearla hints that there is possibility beyond even her sights. The chorus unfurls like a breath of fresh air; Pearla‘s wail fortifies into walls of harmony and the song itself begins to show cracks in the gloom. Finally, “Somewhere” hits its apex: a swirling, bass-heavy release that highlights Pearla’s rock vocal with a might that would make Radiohead blush.
“Somewhere” is a delightful explosion that deserves repeat listens–a piece that strives to find the beauty in everyday life, and ultimately succeeds. The single follows Pearla’s lush debut EP, “If You’re Not Alright Now,” and marks her first collaboration with producer Jon Buscema (of KNGDAVD). Enter “Somewhere” above, and prepare for new music from this starlet in 2018.
Noah McBeth, better known as NoMBe, has been releasing a song a month from his album They Might’ve Even Loved Me since January, and we have just received one of its most tender and stripped-down cuts. According to the singer/songwriter, “Rocky Horror” started as a reference to the 1970’s cult-classic, but turned into a much bigger story about “captivity, the confines in which we find ourselves – both spiritually and culturally.” Eventually, it became centered on the story of his mother who was wrongfully convicted of a crime.
NoMBe’s album so far seems to be drawn from personal experiences of heartbreak and love, very much inspired by the women in his life. The production of this song is completely bare, with just the voice of McBeth and a softly strummed guitar. He sings the words “we’ll make it out of here alive,” but for some reason, I don’t believe him. He does not just sing of a place so eerie, he puts us directly inside of it, and for a brief three minutes and eleven seconds we worry that we will not come out.
50% of all digital sales from the song will be used to support a cause for abused women.
Songwriter Spencer Petersen grew up in a religious home in Utah, an upbringing that continues to elicit tension against his current life in modern Los Angeles. In attempt to understand his own identity, observing the past is necessary, even when it is at complete odds with the present. Both Petersen and bandmate Thomas Carroll have uprooted from a lifestyle of quiet and mountains to a large and daunting city, two completely opposite environments, but carried the music with them nonetheless. Perhaps it is this dichotomy that makesSego’s music so exciting.
“Sucker/Saint” is the second single this fall from the Los Angeles indie rock band. The song is filled with grungy guitars, energetic shakers and a vocal that’s loaded with both angst and acceptance. Sego shows us that we certainly cannot change the past, and we can’t throw it away, even if we desperately want to. The song ends with the lyrics “in it / but not of it / I’m high / but not above it,” a concluding sentiment that lets us know that no circumstance can define us, and that we can be suckers, saints and everything in between.