Week 76 | Tobi’s New Independent Music Picks

A totally random, whatever came to mind first, selection of the latest additions to our New Independent Music Friday playlist

Music reviews written by Tobi Davis

Tobi's new music monster

Artist: Thyla
Track: “December”

Thyla’s latest single, “December” is a work of compelling grace and sublime melancholy.

December by Thyla

Painted in great sweeping ambients of shimmering feedback and sustain, slow-burn six-string arpeggio and delay-drenched rake; drums pounding deep at the heart of it all, kick and snare trading blows; great wash and crash of cymbal fizz, exploding onwards and outwards. The bass walking the groove steady and strong at the back.

Millie Duthie’s vocals cry out in scattered, overlapping echo and double; desperate shards of melody cast skywards and infinite by the talented vocalist. The instrumentation of the track swimming around her, sonics shifted, pitched, and reversed by modulated sample rate and timing. The production building in step with Duthie’s voice and delivery to a towering, massive musical event.

As the music industry runs itself down to the traditional festive break, quality releases become thin on the ground as artists either hold off to the new year or fall foul of the dreaded christmas song (a phenomenon which year on year robs musicians of any discernible taste or apparent ability). Amidst this slew of mediocrity, Thyla have delivered one of the stand out tracks of the year. “December” is a work of compelling songcraft and sublime musicality; a composition where emotion and production work in well-judged and inspired harmony.

It’s time to amend those best of 2019 playlists.

Facebook.com/thylamusic
Twitter: @thylamusic
IG: thyla_music


Share your music via Thursday’s #Musichouruk 8 pm – 9 pm (UK Time) for considering on our New Music Monster Playlist and review as one of our New Music Picks!


About Tobi
Tobi is a mastering engineer and remixer via Tobisonics. As well as writing music reviews for Brash and running various Independent Music playlists, he also hosts Thursday’s #Musichouruk on Twitter.

Tobisonic Mastering
Facebook.com/tobiproducer
Twitter: @masteredbytobi
IG: masteredbytobi

Week 75 | Tobi’s New Independent Music Picks

A totally random, whatever came to mind first, selection of the latest additions to our New Independent Music Friday playlist

Music reviews written by Tobi Davis

Tobi's new music monster

UP N DOWN by Izzy Camina - BRASH! magazine blog

Artist: Izzy Camina
Track: “UP N DOWN”

Independent artist and producer Izzy Camina delivers dystopian dance pop with new single, “UP N DOWN”.

Pulse-tronic, blunt and fused on a bitcrush; sonic-ricochet cracks the ambient open; and beats land, kick punching deep, tight, and hard; the snare smacked thin and brittle-sharp.  The bass shifts in dark, heavy ripples of sub and low frequency spl; pushing, throbbing, driving the track in animalistic surges of compacted energy.  Synths burst and rip in atonal, shards of electronica; as much sound design as composition.

Camina mouths lines in absence, in abstention, in search of absolution; words drip in vowel and hushed, throated whisper; syllables linger and drift.  Camina’s vocals stacked in odd double, awkward and compelling.  Part mantra, part musing, part meditation, Camina crafts image, thought, and sardonic aside.

A soundtrack to the 21st century dystopian driveby, “UP N DOWN” draws deep upon intoxicating thrill of losing oneself to the filth and stink of the oblivion chase; an anthem for a generation raised in the era of ego, where privacy and liberty have been traded for 15 minutes and convenience, where chaos has been prescribed to act as a catalyst for capitalism, and indifference has been normalized; a generation who, in the absence and impossibility of enlightenment, are, instead, in search of escape through any means unnecessary.  In speaking for herself, Izzy Camina is speaking for all of them.

Facebook.com/IzzyCamina
Twitter: @izzycamina
IG: izzycamina


Share your music via Thursday’s #Musichouruk 8 pm – 9 pm (UK Time) for considering on our New Music Monster Playlist and review as one of our New Music Picks!


About Tobi
Tobi is a mastering engineer and remixer via Tobisonics. As well as writing music reviews for Brash and running various Independent Music playlists, he also hosts Thursday’s #Musichouruk on Twitter.

Tobisonic Mastering
Facebook.com/tobiproducer
Twitter: @masteredbytobi
IG: masteredbytobi

Week 73 | Tobi’s New Independent Music Picks

A totally random, whatever came to mind first, selection of the latest additions to our New Independent Music Friday playlist

Music reviews written by Tobi Davis

Tobi's new music monster

novacaine by brookelyn rose Artist: Brookelyn Rose
Track: “Novocaine”

Brookelyn Rose delivers a gutsy alt-rock anthem of distorted six-string and bassline swagger with new single, “Novocaine”.

Presented in huge, unapologetic tones of saturation serrated at the edge and drums bedded deep into the noise-floor with weight and force, Brookelyn Rose’s vocal soars and towers above the massive alt-rock instrumentation; telling testament, indeed, to great power and talent of her voice.

The 3-minute 15-second track shifts and struts with a compelling sense of theatre and occasion; and although much of the production and lyrics are willfully blunt and unforgiving, “Novocaine” is smartly arranged to create crowd-pleasing dynamic and change.

A stripped down, ‘no-nonscience’ methodology runs throughout, making for an ever-engaging listening experience. “Novocaine” feels grounded in artistic integrity, thanks to a sense of creative self-discipline and deliberate intent. On this evidence, Brookelyn Rose is an artist very much on the rise.

Facebook.com/brookelynrosemusic
Twitter: @BrookelynMusic
IG: brookelynrosemusic


Share your music via Thursday’s #Musichouruk 8 pm – 9 pm (UK Time) for considering on our New Music Monster Playlist and review as one of our New Music Picks!


About Tobi
Tobi is a mastering engineer and remixer via Tobisonics. As well as writing music reviews for Brash and running various Independent Music playlists, he also hosts Thursday’s #Musichouruk on Twitter.

Tobisonic Mastering
Facebook.com/tobiproducer
Twitter: @masteredbytobi
IG: masteredbytobi

Week 72 | Tobi’s New Independent Music Picks

A totally random, whatever came to mind first, selection of the latest additions to our New Independent Music Friday playlist

Music reviews written by Tobi Davis

Tobi's new music monster

Where Will You Run by Hannah CliveArtist: Hannah Clive
Track: “Where Will You Run?”

In great cinematic tones and with compelling musicality, independent artist Hannah Clive delivers a heartfelt call-to-arms in defense of our planet, with new single, “Where Will You Run?”

Shifting from side to side with great weight and ancient grace, vast layers of production and instrumentation surge forward in deep pulses of sub and low frequency. The ambient fizzes left/right with reverse, glitch, and shimmer. Pads grind in the low mid, strings rise in desperate flight, and choirs resonate from a middle distance.

Chorused arpeggio and darken piano note add depth, drama, and foreboding. Cymbals explode in metallic shards and scatter, as beats snap dry and bit-crushed. Loop, repeat, echo, and delay cast odd texture, unnatural act, and sonic contrivement across the massive landscape.

Hannah Clive’s vocals stalk the mighty expanse with tightly coiled anger, her words spat and stabbed in exasperation; apocalyptic visions of a nightmare future, approaching ever more rapidly due to our collective indifference and inaction.

Songs of protest are notoriously difficult, more often than not coming off as preachy, naive, or simply disingenuous. Where so many, including the great and good, have failed, Hannah Clive has not only succeeded, she has excelled. “Where Will You Run?” is a staggering, epic track of great musical depth and even greater importance. It is further testament to the unique and inspired talent of Hannah Clive; but moreover, and so much more than that, it is a rallying call of the utmost imperative and severity. And, in doing so, it asks the most simple, straight forward, and vital of questions to each and every one of us.

“Where Will You Run?”

Facebook.com/hannahclivemusic
Twitter: @hannahclive
IG: hannahclive

 

real talk by I M ArtistArtist: I.M the Artist
Track: “Real Talk” (Self-Made EP)

London-based singer-songwriter I.M the Artist delivers a darkly soulful dose of understated poetry and quiet musicality, with new song “Real Talk”.

Presented in a compelling sparse musical expanse of sweeping ambients, shimmering reverses, and stark sonic elements; ‘Real Talk’ grows quietly in brittle and distant piano progressions, deep subs that bleed down to the noise floor, and bit-crushed beats that snip, stutter, and snap.

I.M the Artist walks the beat with a series of tightly woven lyrical phrases, rich in imagery and thought. The talented vocalist carefully gauging her vocal pace to match the ebb and flow of the instrumentation around her. Voice and production shifting as one living, breathing listening experience.

Fiercely contemporary, “Real Talk” blurs the line between musical composition and sound design to such an extent that one becomes the other; and in doing so, questions the very need to even make a distinction. In very much the same way, so success is I.M the Artist in blending the seemingly opposing genres of ambient, beat, and singer-songwriter, that they cease to be separate; and instead, become something new, singular, and unique.

Facebook.com/i.mtheartistofficial
Twitter: @IMtheartistt
IG: i.mtheartist

 

 super bullshit by lauren ruth wardArtist: Lauren Ruth Ward
Track: “Super Bullshit”

LA-based Independent Artist Lauren Ruth Ward drops a raucous dose of no nonsense old time rock ‘n’ soul with new single “Super Bullshit”.

Fiercely percussive throughout, “Super Bullshit” shifts and shimmies, swaggers and struts, moving like a Travolta-Cat. Six-string acoustics spank and rasp, with slap and rattle, while electrics spit fuse and funky fuzz in riff and lick. The bass line walking like you’re talking in tightly delivered dabs of low frequency; playing off and against, the snap and crack of drumsticks working the pocket with skill and finesse.

Lauren Ruth Ward mouths the lyrics with compelling nonchalance and glorious lazy soul. Her voice, rich in low mid texture and deep tone, draws the listener’s voice into the production. A great disarray of willfully, and wonderfully, untidy backing vocal providing fantastic depth of harmony and vocal variation.

Raw, uncontrived, and very much in the room, “Super Bullshit” is a refreshingly honest and uncomplicated production; trading on sheer talent, inspired musicianship, and standout performance. ‘Old School’ is a tired and overused expression within the music industry; but with so many artists relying on FX, technology, and novelty, kids, it’s time to knock off the bullshit and go back to school.

Facebook.com/laurenruthwardmusic
Twitter: @laurenruthward
IG: laurenruthward

 


Share your music via Thursday’s #Musichouruk 8 pm – 9 pm (UK Time) for considering on our New Music Monster Playlist and review as one of our New Music Picks!


About Tobi
Tobi is a mastering engineer and remixer via Tobisonics. As well as writing music reviews for Brash and running various Independent Music playlists, he also hosts Thursday’s #Musichouruk on Twitter.

Tobisonic Mastering
Facebook.com/tobiproducer
Twitter: @masteredbytobi
IG: masteredbytobi

Week 68 | Tobi’s New Independent Music Picks

A totally random, whatever came to mind first, selection of the latest additions to our New Independent Music Friday playlist

Music reviews written by Tobi Davis

Tobi's new music monster

Wrestling by Cartalk - BRASH! Magazine BlogArtist: Cartalk
Track: “Wrestling”
In gloriously grungy tones, Cartalk delivers a quiet-riot and tour-de-force in compelling songcraft and inspired production with new single, “Wrestling”.

Electric six-strings rattle, grind, and rake; the stereo field opened up and the 3-minute 30-second track given depth, with competing movements of crunch-blunted tone, delivered in saturated-crafted contrasting timbre. The bass moving fast, with a sleight of hand, across the fretboard; perfectly punctuated dabs of low frequency, flavored with a delicious edge of distorted grit. Drums working a pittapatta of kick and snare; kick landing light, bouncing the track from beat to beat. Snare impacting into the skin, the stick turning and dipping on the wrist. The tip and tickle of the Hi-Hat adding count and pace; keeping the top of the groove, as the bass drives the bottom.

Vocals laze, talk, and shout their way through the verses; conversational and idle, yet building in weight, inference, and quiet intensity; shards of an image, an afterthought, and possibly trade-off in scattered aside; an understated soliloquy, meandering monologue.

Only to break-open in the choruses, a voice on-the-run in stacked double-track upon double-track; rushing and rising in glorious and untidy, indie-singalong-hook. Guitars surge and shift into supersonic, great velocities of distortion cast left/right. The production accelerating and breaking as one; wondrous dynamic movements en masse. Cymbal shimmer and smash cascading across the width of the track; snare landing in rapid-fire smacks of rasping, exploding noise.

Though presented in the homebrewed tones of slackerdom, lo-fi, and hazy, dazy, garage rock, ‘Wrestling’ is, in fact, a deceptively well-crafted production; the composition moving from movement to movement with accomplished finesse and compelling contrast. The instrumentation employed demonstrates a keen sense of musicality in its choice of complementing and competing tone and timbre. The unassuming arrangement creating great depth, shifting layer and width with great, and quiet, success.

The history of rock ‘n’ roll has known more than a few ‘larger than life’ bands who went about their music-making with great and glorious pride, pomp and circumstance. And although the legendary status of the likes of Led Zeppelin, Queen, and Pink Floyd are well-deserved; far fewer, truly great bands, went about their work quietly, in compelling diligence and inspired service to their craft and their audience. And it is in this less celebrated, but every bit as impressive, regard that Cartalk begins to stand compared to, and are evocative of, the likes of Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. For they too were deceptively accomplished in their production, understated in their presentation, standout in their songwriting, and out and out rock ‘n’ rollers.

Facebook.com/cartalkmusic
Twitter: @cartalkmusic
IG: cartalkmusic

 

Selfish Girl by MayflyArtist: Mayfly
Track: “Selfish Girl”
22-year-old producer Mayfly makes a welcome return with an inspired dose of sizzling synthpop sonics and driving electronic bass, new single “Selfish Girl”.

Rising out of the silence, a pulsating, modulating sequencer shimmers from note to note of low mid spl. Kick punches deep and deadened, smacking low frequency and a touch of sub down the center of the 3-minute 28-second track. Snare arrives in stabs of smack and rasp; dry implosions of midrange impact. A second sequencer fizzes and shifts down the gut of the track, providing movement and pace.

Mayfly’s voice travels in breathless rushes of a graceful whisper, placed ethereally and afloat above the center of the mix. Lines are repeated as though loop or percussive sample; building in emphasis through the act of repetition; their inspired melody compelling contrasted by the repetitive presentation.

Throughout Mayfly’s vocal plays off against the instrumentation, drifting into the distance as the arrangement swells and surges. Synth leads meander, almost absent-minded, in the background. The production creating a constantly evolving and contrasting stereo field, as the orchestration grows in complexity, layer, and depth.

Mayfly’s output is protracted at best, with only two singles in the space of a year, but each is an exquisite act of composition. The young producer demonstrating a keen ear for detail and a seemingly intuitive sense of how to build complementing elements and layers. “Selfish Girl” represents further evidence of the striking talent of Mayfly. We can but hope that we need not wait another year for her third single.

Facebook.com/officialmayfly
Twitter: @Officialmayfly
IG: officialmayfly

 

Escape from Mars by CostiArtist: Costi
Track: “Escape from Mars”
London-based rapper and singer-songwriter Costi drops a sublime slice of graceful jazz joints, vocal, wit, and flow with new single, “Escape from Mars”.

Vinyl crackles left/right, snippets of stereo, lo-fi ear candy on the down-low. Piano keys tumble, climb and fall in loop; set back and roomy, gramophone timbre; jazzy with understated opulence. A bassline begins to groove; shifting movements of low-frequency grind, pushing and pulling the track; laid backswing. Beats snap and punch; snare crushed rattle, drum-machine sneezed; stuttered shards. Kick dabbing deep, dull, and flat; popped on top, creating a presence in the mix.

Costi walks his words at a stroll, allowing the beat to breathe; working in loosely syncopated stanzas of conversational thought, observation, and reflection; lyrics rich in wit and insight, compelling undersold.

Unassuming and quietly engaging, “Escape from Mars” is delivered with accomplished and tastefully judged musicality; word and instrument working in effective tandem. The intuitively pitched production, an object lesson is knowing how much is enough. A demonstration of artistic integrity and the great potential of its creator.

Facebook.com/costithe
Twitter: @therealcosti
IG: realcosti


Share your music via Thursday’s #Musichouruk 8 pm – 9 pm (UK Time) for considering on our New Music Monster Playlist and review as one of our New Music Picks!


About Tobi
Tobi is a mastering engineer and remixer via Tobisonics. As well as writing music reviews for Brash and running various Independent Music playlists, he also hosts Thursday’s #Musichouruk on Twitter.

Tobisonic Mastering
Facebook.com/tobiproducer
Twitter: @masteredbytobi
IG: masteredbytobi

Week 67 | Tobi’s New Independent Music Picks

A totally random, whatever came to mind first, selection of the latest additions to our New Independent Music Friday playlist

Music reviews written by Tobi Davis

Tobi's new music monster

"Something in the Way" by USE ft. T.O.L.DArtist: USE ft. T.O.L.D
Track: “Something in the Way” (Grungewave)
Self-described ‘Grungewave’ Artists USE featuring T.OL.D. deconstruct Nirvana’s 1991 release, ‘Something in the Way’ and cast it a staggering stripped-down reimagining of vast, unforgiving sonic landscape, haunted by electro-vocal, phantom and elemental.

‘Underneath the bridge, the tarp has sprung a leak,’ phonetics devolved utter constant and guttered vowel; rung flat and electro-atonal, vocoder ghosts; a phantom zone modulates distant, low bass drone and ambient; rising darkness, dank and unforgivable. Whispers shimmer in drift and delay; slivers of reverb, ethereal and unearthly.

“Something in the Way”; kick impacts deep and sunken, low frequency stained dirty; gated snare smacks tourniquet tight, accompanying its funeral drum. Ambiance rises, gaseous and fused with electric charge; static movement, unnatural. Odd synth-sonics pulse and modulate in great mortal breathes of fizzing saturation. Piano keys brighten in brittle desperation and lamentation, only to die back into the nothing.

Both faithful rendition and inspired reworking; “Something in the Way” delivers a singular listening experience unlike any other; though evocative of seminal works, such as Pink Floyd’s ‘The Wall’, The Smith’s ‘Last Night I Dreamt that Somebody Loved Me’, and Nine Inch Nail’s ‘Something I Can Never Have’, USE have crafted a production of standout originality; a staggering statement of artistic intent, uninhibited and uncompromising; raw, difficult and quite simply beautiful.

Facebook.com/untitledsocialexperiment
Twitter: @USEBOT001
IG: untitledsocialexperiment

Facebook.com/itistold
Twitter: @theworldistold
IG: theworldistold

 

Girl Wilde, Probably Crying EPArtist: Girl Wilde
Track: “BATSHIT” (Probably Crying EP)
LA-based Independent Artist Girl Wilde delivers a noisy slice of alt-punk-rock and aggro-pop with new song “BATSHIT” and new EP Probably Crying.

Synth-sonics pulse blunt and saturated tonal, fused-funk and oddity; a kick dabs flat, deep space vacuum implosion; the snare dry, crisp and willfully unrefined. The bass shifts in protracted drives and turns, form and force from the back of the mix. Sound FXs burst in compression compacted close-quartered noise; from spot, sound to scream. The chorus erupting in grinding, six-string drive and fuzz. Layers of distortion, contrasted by flavor, tone, and timbre, create depth, width, and excitement.

Girl Wilde delivers her words, understated and talk-sung through the verses; overlapping stanzas of vendetta unrealized and wrongs deserving of violent righting; a smoldering epicenter of pending natural disaster. The fuse lit, Girl Wilde’s vocal explodes in the choruses, rushing and burning through the lines; lyrics contorted to frustrated shrieks, energy unhinged.

Hardwired aggravated, hewn from noise; a perfect pop animal for kids to trash their rooms too, “BATSHIT” is an alt-rock aggro-anthem for the downtrodden, disrespected, and denied. A 2-minute 52-second scream-fest. Destruction, given form. Jump up and down until the world shakes. Don’t take it. Don’t accept it. Just go BATSHIT.

Facebook.com/GirlWilde
Twitter: @ImGirlWilde
IG: girlwilde

 

Devour You by StarcrawlerArtist: Starcrawler
Track: “You Dig Yours” (Devour You)
LA-based 21st Century Rock ‘n’ Roll animals Starcrawler drop a deliciously debauched dose of distortion, drums, and detonations with the new song, “You Dig Yours” and new LP Devour You.

Noise. Thunderous, pulsating, noise; delicious detonations of drums and distortion, the track arriving with massive pride, pomp, and circumstance of glorious rock ‘n’ roll. “You Dig Yours” whispers lead singer Arrow de Wilde; right in your ear. Bassline running in staggered dabs of low frequency; the kick, a tightly coiled punch; snare hitting with rattle and smack, rattlesnake sucker-punch. Hi-Hat rasping in fizzing metallic implosion and cough. Electric six-string wails in the delayed right to left, sonic howl, with grunting, crunchy riff and grind playing off and against the bassline.

De Wilde’s voice struts and snarls, with gut deep resonance, rusty, soulful edge, and breathy, absent sustain. Words stand tall and defiant at the center of the mix, refusing to be rushed by great, storming mass of rock energy. Confrontational in delivery and offensive in the phrase; each line landing with an implicit and uber-cool ‘f**k you’ attached.

In an age where so many rock ‘n’ roll wannabes have EDM-ed their compositions in the hope of attracting a wider audience and remaining relevant, Starcrawler is a refreshingly unapologetic dose of bluesy swagger and dirty rock. Their sound stinks of 12 bar fret walks, overdriven tubes, and turning it all the way to eleven. Starcrawler is a gloriously noisy and very boozy night at the opera. Turn it up loud. And then turn it even louder.

Facebook.com/starcrawlertheband
Twitter: @thestarcrawler
IG: starcrawler


Share your music via Thursday’s #Musichouruk 8 pm – 9 pm (UK Time) for considering on our New Music Monster Playlist and review as one of our New Music Picks!


About Tobi
Tobi is a mastering engineer and remixer via Tobisonics. As well as writing music reviews for Brash and running various Independent Music playlists, he also hosts Thursday’s #Musichouruk on Twitter.

Tobisonic Mastering
Facebook.com/tobiproducer
Twitter: @masteredbytobi
IG: masteredbytobi

Week 66 | Tobi’s New Independent Music Picks

A totally random, whatever came to mind first, selection of the latest additions to our New Independent Music Friday playlist

Music reviews written by Tobi Davis

Tobi's new music monster

Funani by Toya Delazy Artist: Toya Delazy
Track: “Funani”
London-based South African Independent Artist Toya Delazy delivers a percussive tour-de-force of rich in musical integrity and storming vocals, with the new single “Funani”.

Percussive shards of sharp frequency burst in rapid stabs of brassy sonic awesome; texture shifts in the middle distance, breathy and raspy. Electro-kick pops deep and flat, dry, basic and willfully unrefined; a snare sneezes, smacked tight, playing off hi-hat tickle and tick. An odd, phonic drops right and wide; grabbing and grunting in defiance. Metal rattles and riffs in a syncopated series of fast impacts.

Delazy mouths and swallows lyrics, physical; shifting through a rhythmic structure, break, and form in an inspired run, rebound, and scatter; her words dancing about, around, and between the scattered arrangement; music and voice, one and the same. A living, breathing experience of music; a creation in its own right.

“Funani” exists in a perpetual state of movement; working in tight clusters of a percussive idea, expressed in an engaging array of instrumental timbre and tone. Sounds are often set at odds with each other. The 2-minute 28-second track refusing to sit down and be pinned to one theme or idea. Fiercely original throughout and delivered with accomplished production, “Funani” represents a standout and unique composition. Tonya Delazy is an Artist on the rise.

Facebook.com/toyadelazy
Twitter: @toyadelazy
IG: toyadelazy

 

Bored to Death by WalrusArtist: Walrus
Track: “Bored to Death”
Indie-rock four-piece Walrus drop an uber-cool dose of funky, grungy surf-rock with new single “Bored to Death”.

Drums tumble into beat, snare snapping and smacking the 3-minute 12-second track into life in double-quick time. A bassline grooves busy and cool at the back; shifting through deft dabs of low frequency. Hi-Hat and cymbal ticking and teasing, rasping and crashing, in glorious roomy real-world space. SIx-strings stab, buck, and riff in lush, reverb and shimmering delay; modulated B-movie cool, with Tarantino Tremolo. Grinding and grunting through gruff distortion and fuzz.

The vocals walk the centerline with an understated, lazy strut; lyrics working rhymes in circles, twisting ideas in concentric stanzas. The voice drawing your ear deep into the depth of the track; allowing the guitars to fold in around you. Dazy, hazy, indie-singalong hooks are delivered with perfectly poised nonchalance.

“Bored to Death” moves like a Travolta look-alike at a neon-drenched diner dive, but hewn of the animalistic noise of a hard-touring live circuit. It is restless and without rest. Smacked with the hard-earned integrity of a band that grinds it out the old school way, from gig to gig and town to town. Walrus is the real deal. And pretty soon, they’ll be coming to a town near you.

Facebook.com/WaWalrus
Twitter: @walrustheband
IG: walrustheband

 

Beyond by Kirsten LudwigArtist: Kirsten Ludwig
Track: “Beyond” (Wasted Time EP)
Stand-out singer-songwriter Kirsten Ludwig crafts a singular composition of quiet grace and inspired musicality with the new song “Beyond”.

Arpeggio six-strings tumble, rattle, and fall in partnership; adrift and restless, suspended in time. Ambients glimmer in the distance, ethereal; seldom physical; shifting in slow-burn modulation. Stings swell in rich, low-mid tones and ancient timbre; a sudden surge of musical weight, thickening the composition for a moment; only to fall back into the silence. A kick pounds deep and set back; punctuating the track. Layers of instrumentation grow out of the darkness; embered tones of the guitar, cast odd and shift-tonal by a chorus, delay, and reverb.

Ludwig floats in absent mind, thoughts and feelings flowing in cascade and run; her voice pacing with the arrangement, rising in soulful wail; only to slip back into the depths of the graceful composition. Ludwig’s vocal trading in lingering and melancholy; great expanses of imagining, desperate yearning, and solitary cry.

Electric riff and lick erupt in grungy fizz and crunch, turning in awkward movements and abrupt fingering; expressive and potent. The production swaying in heavy swagger; odd, breathtaking stanzas of a staggering musical idea; a great emotional tempest of revels new ended, but not, nor never, reconciled.

Kirsten Ludwig quietly delivers composition after composition of striking integrity and singular musical identity. A songwriter of unique aptitude and singular vocal identity. And an Artist who, to the collective shame of the Independent Music Scene, is all too often overlooked and deserving of far greater recognition. A bold and stand out music-maker who continues to take an inspired risk with her compositions; and in doing so, serves as great inspiration for her fellow artists.

Facebook.com/kirstenludwigmusic
Twitter: @kirstenludwig
IG: kirstenlud


Share your music via Thursday’s #Musichouruk 8 pm – 9 pm (UK Time) for considering on our New Music Monster Playlist and review as one of our New Music Picks!


About Tobi
Tobi is a mastering engineer and remixer via Tobisonics. As well as writing music reviews for Brash and running various Independent Music playlists, he also hosts Thursday’s #Musichouruk on Twitter.

Tobisonic Mastering
Facebook.com/tobiproducer
Twitter: @masteredbytobi
IG: masteredbytobi

Week 65 | Tobi’s New Independent Music Picks

A totally random, whatever came to mind first, selection of the latest additions to our New Independent Music Friday playlist

Music reviews written by Tobi Davis

Tobi's new music monster

I Know You’re Gonna Let Her Down by Giant Party Artist: Giant Party
Track: “I Know You’re Gonna Let Her Down”
London-based four-piece Giant Party drops a radio-ready dose of new wave groove and neo-synth-pop cool with new single, “I Know You’re Gonna Let Her Down”.

Drums pace the track in shifting strides of quietly confident kick and snare; the kick dropping in dabs of low frequency, while the snare rasps in tight, dry coughs. An electric six-string grunt and grinds in blunt, percussive shards of crunch and fuzz. The bass growling at a short distance, a stalking wolf of protracted SPL. Modulated tones twist and contort through quickly-paced turns, thrilling the ear and adding odd, bespoke texture.

Vocals walk-in in well-timed stanzas of compellingly understated melody; inspired processing creating a shimmering timbre of double, slap, and synthesized. Lyrics unfold in a series of compact phrases. Layers of backing vocal add width, depth, and counterpoint through the choruses as synth pads fizz and expand. The 3-minute 30-second track opening up across the stereo field with musical finesse and accomplished grace.

A slow burn, radio-ready, midnight anthem, “I Know You’re Gonna Let Her Down” demonstrates the Artist maturity and creative depth of Giant Party. Far from the exuberant, distorted mess of most Indie offerings, Giant Party has crafted a track of integrity, judgment, and taste, worthy of the great compositions that so defined the legendary production-indulgent 80s.

Facebook.com/giantpartyband
Twitter: @GiantParty
IG: giantpartyband

 

Baby Blue by Harlequin Gold - BRASH! Magazine BlogArtist: Harlequin Gold
Track: “Baby Blue”
Candian indie-pop outfit Harlequin Gold delivers a sublime slice of grace, introspection, and quiet, understated cool, with new EP and title song “Baby Blue”.

Arpeggio counts time in stand-still, dabs of blunt gently overdriven tones fall and rise; rocking the track in a state of perpetual movement. In duet, the vocals travel in graceful melodic lines of hushed syllables; words delivered at a brisk pace without haste. Delays and reverbs set words hanging, thrown, and lingered.

Drums pound, burst and thump. Deep bass pushes and pulses at the heart of the track; the production gathering speed and complexity. Layers of electric six-string tumble and rattle across the stereo field. Vocal doubles cast left/right open up the width of the composition. Further arpeggio cascade in contrasting, well-judged frequency ranges; creating a shifting landscape of texture and sound. The song surging upwards and outwards; great sonic expanses of wailing guitar note soar to the infinite.

An inspired opening to their four-track EP of the same name, “Baby Blue” goes about its work with an accomplished arrangement and musical sleight of hand. The choices of instrumentation demonstrating an acute awareness for using contrasting timbre to create an engaging sense of depth, height, and width in the production; and working in well-judged service to the standout songcraft in evidence at the heart of the song. Indie-pop of the highest quality.

Facebook.com/harlequingold
Twitter: @harlequingold_
IG: harlequingold

 

Greytopia by Karolina RoseArtist: Karolina Rose
Track: “Greytopia”
Independent Artist Karolina Rose crafts an inspired dose of uber-cool alt-dance-pop rich in musicality and originality, with new single “Greytopia”.

A dance kick punches light and blunt, trading deft blows with a retro beat machine snare/clap; electric guitar spits and spasms in a tightly timed loop; toms fall from barreled and synthetic; bass counts up in dull, deliberate steps of low-frequency tone. Rose paints pictures in vivid terms, odd imaginings; words chosen for sound, form, and meaning, carefully crafted to create a texture of phonic and shades of inference.

The 3-minute 37-second track lurches into overdrive as a sub lands deep into the noise floor; weight and force of massive sound pressure level pulsing in meters of a waveform, felt in the gut; synths modulate, shift and shimmer left/right; a sonic palette set in perpetual movement. The production fizzing with energy in phonic-abstraction.

“Greytopia” successfully marries tried and true dance-pop form and structure with lyrical oddity and musical originality to craft an inspired composition of singular and unique quality. Rose brings a striking depth and integrity to her words; refusing to simply settle for ‘pretty stock-phrases’ that infest so many dance-pop offerings, and instead, delivers a genuinely different lyrical experience; and in doing so, demonstrates that entertain and art can live well together and with great effect.

Facebook.com/karolinarosemusic
Twitter: @karolinar0se
IG: karolinarosemusic


Share your music via Thursday’s #Musichouruk 8 pm – 9 pm (UK Time) for considering on our New Music Monster Playlist and review as one of our New Music Picks!


About Tobi
Tobi is a mastering engineer and remixer via Tobisonics. As well as writing music reviews for Brash and running various Independent Music playlists, he also hosts Thursday’s #Musichouruk on Twitter.

Tobisonic Mastering
Facebook.com/tobiproducer
Twitter: @masteredbytobi
IG: masteredbytobi

Week 64 | Tobi’s New Independent Music Picks

A totally random, whatever came to mind first, selection of the latest additions to our New Independent Music Friday playlist

Music reviews written by Tobi Davis

Tobi's new music monster

 

Untitled by LEDA - BRASH! Magazine BlogArtist: LEDA
Track: “Untitled”
Scottish-based Alt-pop Independent Artist LEDA delivers a willfully unrefined dose of broken up overdrive and honesty with the new song, “Untitled”.

Electric six-strings strike and grind, fused modulation soaked in blunted saturation from analog circuits overdriven; a protected series of stabs and resonance, adrift without a clear purpose of melody or percussive form; lost to the ambient and the great weight of silence.

LEDA’s voice comes tumbling down in freefall, driving and holding the track with accomplished, understated melody and compelling, well-worked, but loosely fit the rhythmic structure. Her words, a conversation in the absence of another, an uncontrollable stream of consciousness, without censure or contrivement.

Absent-minded high-frequency shimmers and shifts from up the neck, the distant somewhere else; brittle and pained, ill-formed and beautiful in its ugliness. Pulse and surge of reverb, stacked feedback of delay, shudder and sustain from words left to linger and pollute the atmosphere. Echoes of after-thought and aside, break from the stereo wide, in lo-fi tones; 3 – 5 kHz, old telephone calls for black and white times.

A heart-stopping testament to the great power of simplicity, a staggering act of artist honesty; a fundamentally alternative and independent creation, devoid of the superficial or disingenuous; a breathtakingly bold statement of uninhibited songwriting craft and the singular value of commitment in performance.

Facebook.com/isthisleda
Twitter: @fxckleda
IG: fxckleda

Hollow by Tournier - BRASH! Magazine BlogArtist: Tournier
Track: “Hollow”
Essex-based rapper/singer/songwriter Tournier drops a deftly produced slice of true word, stuttered beat, and loop in contrast with new single, “Hollow”.

Synth-strings shift in odd, lo-fi timbre and pitch-reversed tone; stabs in atonal tremolo; a voice setback and lost in ill-defined distance. Kick burts in broken surges of low frequency, stuttered ripples of sub and heavy-weight sound pressure level; a snare snips, dry and electric. Hi-hat fizz and glitch, brittle and teased metallic.

Tournier walks his words with an everchanging gate from stride to shuffle, idle and meander, strut and bounce; laying rhymes to emphasis meaning through phonetic resonance; pushing and pulling at the count of his flow, to reflect the emotion of his thoughts. His voice rising and falling in tone to draw the ear and color the sound of his phrasing.

The production structured in runs, stops, and drifts to echo and enhance the sense behind Tournier’s vocal. The beat in a state of perpetual re-working, refusing to stand still or laze into hapless repetition; but rather insist upon challenging the listener with new pattern and form. Contrasting sonic textures dropped into the track to create further dimension and emotional impact.

Rap is a genre much maligned by indifferent practitioners more interested in self-aggrandizement, than self-expression. Artists like Tournier demonstrate the art form is still alive, vital, and compelling. ‘Hollow’ is a work of musical integrity and a testament to the artistic credibility of its creator.

Facebook.com/tourniermusic
Twitter: @tourniermusic
IG: tourniermusic

Future by Mickey ft. Beatriz Nunes - BRASH! Magazine BlogArtist: Mickey ft. Beatriz Nunes
Track: “Future”
Mickey and Beatriz Nunes cook up a fresh dish of laid back alt-pop hook, smartly arranged instrumentation, and tidy beat with new single, “Future”.

Stratocaster dry six-string riff rattle and slap, electro-pop-sonics chime synthetic in a funky alt-pop hook. Beats stab and smack; the kick landing in funky-tight dabs and thuds, the snare a slight spat of perfectly-timed impact. Raspy dry claps and hi-hat snaps, pop, and burst across the stereo field. A bass shifts and grooves, in turns and drones; low-frequency shifts and weights.

Mickey and Beatriz Nunes working the words back and forth in a lively vocal game of push and pull. The tone of their voices contrasting and complementing each others’, as they bounce back, overlap, support, and counterpoint. Words delivered in percussive stanza and phrase, counting the beat as walking the notes of the melody.

The accomplished production makes effective and smart use of sonic space, framing the silence, pause, and mute with good judgment and finesse. The 3-minute 16-second track working its runtime light; an ever-evolving array of texture and timbre, cascading left to right/right to left. An immensely enjoyable track that adeptly demonstrates pop needn’t be superficial, generic, or superfluous; that it can creative, inspiring, of integrity and credibility.

Facebook.com/mickeymickeyyeah
Twitter: @mickeymickeyeah
IG: mickeymickeyyeaaah

Facebook.com/beatriznunesmusic
IG: beatriznunesmusic


Share your music via Thursday’s #Musichouruk 8 pm – 9 pm (UK Time) for considering on our New Music Monster Playlist and review as one of our New Music Picks!


About Tobi
Tobi is a mastering engineer and remixer via Tobisonics. As well as writing music reviews for Brash and running various Independent Music playlists, he also hosts Thursday’s #Musichouruk on Twitter.

Tobisonic Mastering
Facebook.com/tobiproducer
Twitter: @masteredbytobi
IG: masteredbytobi

Week 63 | Tobi’s New Independent Music Picks

A totally random, whatever came to mind first, selection of the latest additions to our New Independent Music Friday playlist

Music reviews written by Tobi Davis

Tobi's new music monsterLoving is the Way by Alex McArtorArtist: Alex Mcartor
Track: “Loving is the Way”
Texas-born singer-songwriter Alex Mcartor makes a welcome return with an inspired blend of soulful instrumentation and synthpop sonics to delight and enthrall the listener, with new single, “Loving is the Way”.

Mcartor’s voice strikes up, soulful and compelling with rasping edge and warmth; her words strung melodic in long, towering, stanzas of rich low and resonating mids. ‘Loving is the way to touch you, feeling just to be in your heart’, the words delivered mantra-like, staggering and massive. Electric keys push outwards in graceful undertones and modulated overtones. A beat cranks, bit-crushed and sat deep into the center of the mix; quietly keeping the count.

Synth pads fizz and pulse, as the track begins to build. Electric arpeggio rattle and flex left/right; the production breathing width and depth into the stereo field, as the kick drives down the middle in rapid dabs of low frequency. Mcartor’s voice begins to shift, delivering words in quickening twists and turns. A snare smacks hard, flat-packed; reverb gated short, the beat-design evolving in gathering complexity.

Synthpop sonics erupt in shards of shimmering chimes, while electro-bass rumbles in metronic shudders and waves. Electric six-strings wail and contort in ambient and delay. Hi hat snaps and cymbal bursts, pop and sneeze across the width of the arrangement, adding fizz, height and energy. The 4-minute 5-second composition pushing onwards and upwards in a perfect judged blend of instrumentation, while drawing upon an inspired and eclectic range of genres.

“Loving is the Way” further cements Alex Mcartor’s reputation as an Independent Artist of striking creative integrity and originality, capable of delivering songcraft and production of the highest order; made all the more impressive, given her young age. And, in turn, further demonstrates that Alex Mcartor has every chance of becoming a highly successful Artist with little or no apparent limit to the heights she might reach musically and artistically.

Facebook.com/alexmcartormusic
Twitter: @alexmcartor
IG: alexmcartor_

 

Freckles by Pip Blom Artist: Pip Blom
Track: “Freckles”
Hard touring Independent Artist Pip Blom delivers a noisy dose of lo-fi indie-rock goodness with new single “Freckles”.

Overdriven six-string bark down the center, in dry percussive stabs and bolts. Hi-Hat rasp ticks in shifting snippets of metallic fizz and chink, while kick lands deep with a touch of hollow; the snare, a sneezed smack of super-short rattle and mid-frequency impact. A second driving guitar joins, distorted blunt and fuzzy. The bass moving in jinks and jags, deep and at the back of the track.

Pip Blom’s vocals arrive in lo-fi telephone tones, prickly and rusted; the filter effect setting them off mic and a touch distanced. Blom’s voice idles and meanders through hazy image and trail of thought in compelling understated, lazy stanzas. Willfully off-set backing vocal adds weight to the chorus, as cymbals splash and shimmer around electric rocketship, saturation, burst, explosion, and grind.

“Freckles” moves through its 3-minute 2-second run time with engaging simplicity and disarmingly straight-forward approach to songcraft and production. Everything is done extremely well and with deliberate intent. There is an impressive economy and sense of creative-discipline in the methodology of the instrumentation and arrangement. Each element serves a clear purpose, without the inclusion of anything frivolous or superfluous. The result is an immensely enjoyable and effortless listening experience. The music of Pip Blom stands as an undeniable testament that lo-fi and noisy can also be carefully crafted and adapt in its execution.

Pip Blom are playing live across Europe and the UK throughout September, October and into November.

Facebook.com/pipblommusic
Twitter: @pipblom
IG: pipblom

 

Out on the Old Highway by Li'l Andy Artist: Li’l Andy
Track: “Out on the Old Highway”
Montreal-based singer-songwriter Li’l Andy crafts a landscape of forgotten lives and broken dreams in musical tones forlorn, wistful, and poetic with new single, “Out on the Old Highway”.

Slide guitar haunts from out the vista haze, slinking and shimmering like quicksilver rattlesnakes. Six-strings grind, arpeggio, metallic and heavy; rusted tones, creaking and cracking under the weight of flesh white finger ends. A bass guitar moves dimly in the distance, shadowing the guitar in low-frequency drones and drags. A kick drum lands seldom and deep, punctuating the track like a stopped clock.

Li’l Andy’s voice stalks in vast, tired, syllables; great casts of low mid resonance, set in occasional contrast, by lifts of light phonetics allowed to drift without direction or intention. Images flow in vivid phrase and graceful passage; depicting scenes of the destitute and the downtrodden, the maligned and the conveniently forgotten.

Moving in protracted, yet graceful shudders and shakes, the 4-minute 37-second track grows quietly in instrumentation; a lone fiddle, strung out somber and beautiful; a single bowed serenade to the cast-aside, and in turn, a sad echo of Li’l Andy’s own lament. The country singer-songwriter crafting a constant, if allusive, an undercurrent of myth most ancient and born of the land into the, otherwise, stark and grounded lyric.

Despite its sobering subject matter, Li’l Andy manages to inbune “Out on the Old Highway” with a lingering sense of wonder at the persistence of hope and the great human capacity for perseverance. An inspired and accomplished act of songcraft and production. Music-making of the highest quality.

Facebook
Twitter: @thisislilandy
IG: thisislilandy


Share your music via Thursday’s #Musichouruk 8 pm – 9 pm (UK Time) for considering on our New Music Monster Playlist and review as one of our New Music Picks!


About Tobi
Tobi is a mastering engineer and remixer via Tobisonics. As well as writing music reviews for Brash and running various Independent Music playlists, he also hosts Thursday’s #Musichouruk on Twitter.

Tobisonic Mastering
Facebook.com/tobiproducer
Twitter: @masteredbytobi
IG: masteredbytobi