PLAYLIST: February 2020

We made it through January everyone! That achievement alone deserves a shiny new playlist. We’ve put together a list of brand new music to help you celebrate. As February is also LGBT History month, we’ve included a few tracks from some of our favourite LGBT artists in the list too. Take some time to scroll through our choices below, and make sure you hit play on the Spotify playlist at the end of the page.

 

Wilsen – ‘Feeling Fancy’
I cannot get this song from Brooklyn-based trio Wilsen out of my head! It’s a shimmering guitar ode to the softly spoken, celebrating introversion and inherent shyness. It’s taken from their upcoming album Ruiner, which is set for release on 21st February via Dalliance Recordings. (Kate Crudgington)

Bronski Beat – ‘Smalltown Boy’
British synth-pop band Bronski Beat released this classic single in 1984. Whilst on the surface, ‘Smalltown Boy’ is a catchy anthem that easily fills a dance floor, lyrically it tells the story of a young gay man struggling to come to terms with his sexual identity, and his place in the world. (GIHE)

Piney Gir – ‘Puppy Love’
The latest single from the Kansas-born London-based artist, ‘Puppy Love’ reflects on the bittersweet nature of love; both the simple, overpowering desire of first love, and then the ‘black dog’ – a common metaphor for depression and its all consuming nature. Glistening with twinkling hooks and sweeping harmonies, it’s a poignant and infectious offering. Of the track, Piney explains: Everyone feels the darkness sometimes, so I’m singing about it. It’s a thin line between Puppy Love and The Black Dog; both can be all consuming and agonising and at times euphoric, manic even.We cannot wait to catch Piney Gir headline for us on 14th February, at The Finsbury (event info here). She’ll be playing along with Grawlix, Captain Handsome and I Am Her – and all for free! (Mari Lane)

Cold Beat – ‘Prism’
San Francisco band Cold Beat, fronted by Hannah Lew from Grass Widow, have announced details of their forthcoming album Mother, out 28th February via DFA Records, and this is their first single lifted from it. It’s the sort of music I could plug into my ears whilst staring at the fast moving world outside of a train carriage. The world slowly speeding by. (Tash Walker)

Ghum – ‘California’
The new one from total faves Ghum, ‘California’ oozes an eerie, reverb-strewn atmosphere as the distinctive sultry power of Laura Gue Lo’s vocals flow. A grunge-inspired anthem for our times showcasing the unique beguiling allure of this band who just keep getting better. Of the track, Laura explains: “The song talks about a love story that was condemned to end badly. The hope and love that both had at the beginning is represented by the idea of running away to California”. (ML)

Indian Queens – ‘Bubblewrap’ 
A beguiling lament about the state of the planet, London three-piece Indian Queens have shared their latest single, ‘Bubble Wrap’. The track is lifted from their upcoming debut album God Is A Woman, which is set to be released via Cool Thing Records later this year. (KC)

Amaroun – ‘Perish’ 
‘Perish’ is the latest track from previous guest on our radio show Amaroun, and I completely love it. The beats, the vocals, the stripped back simplicity – sublime. Amaroun talks about the themes she evokes in her music which consistently touch on her journey of being a black queer woman, overcoming struggles with sexuality, and the importance of emotional honesty in music. In Amaroun’s words, “this track is an autobiographical reintroduction of myself”. I can’t and don’t want to stop listening. All the latest music from Amaroun will be showcased at the listening party at the CLF cafe Peckham Rye, on 13th Feb. (TW)

ALA.NI – ‘Papa’
I love this latest track from ALA.NI. ‘Papa’ is taken from her recently released self-produced album, ACCA. The whole thing is almost entirely acapella and just beautiful. ALA.NI originally trained as a dancer, but was told that as a person of colour she would never make it as a professional ballerina. Her latest album is a powerful vision of modern womanhood. It’s an unflinching account of pain, anger, sadness, and growth. Check it out now. (TW)

AyOwA – ‘First Frost’
The new single from the Danish duo, ‘First Frost’ is told from the perspective of a couple who have spent their whole life together and are now setting out into the winter to disappear as one. With its swirling synths and the beguiling haunting power of Hannah Schneider’s vocals, it’s a beautiful, shimmering cinematic soundscape. Amoeba, the upcoming debut album from AyOwA, is set for release in September this year. (ML)

JFDR – ‘Shimmer’
This beautiful new track from Icelandic multi-instrumentalist JFDR is about “loving someone who is a bit broken”. It’s lifted from her second album New Dreams, which is set for release on 13th March via White Sun Recording. (KC)

Girl In Red – ‘Kate’s Not Here’
I have no shame admitting I was drawn to Norwegian artist Girl In Red’s new track because a) it has my first name in it, and b) I wear a red coat. It’s lifted from the official film soundtrack for The Turning, directed by Floria Sigismondi (The Runaways, Handmaid’s Tale), which is in UK cinemas now. (KC)

Nuala Honan – ‘Slow Down’
‘Slow Down’ is the first single of 2020 for Bristol-based Nuala Honan and it’s a cracker. Driven by post-punk rawness but with delicate vocals and pounding drums when needed most. It’s a taste of what’s to come from her upcoming second LP, which follows a spell of personal recuperation and sonic evolutions. Loving it. (TW)

Otta – ‘Near Enough A Woman’
I can’t get enough of Otta right now. Their new music is just seeping so perfectly into my ears, it’s what I’ve been craving for so long, but I just didn’t realise. This is one of their latest singles taken from the freshly released debut EP, After It All Blew Over, which is sublime. the perfect combination and concoction of electronic, UK jazz, new soul and RnB. (TW)

Clare Kelly – ‘Less Alone’ 
The tone in Clare Kelly’s voice totally blew me away, so rich and full of emotion, it really sings so beautifully on this song ‘Less Alone’. Describing her sound as “alt-folk mermaid music”, Kelly can firmly consider herself having a new firm fan. Really looking forward to hearing more of where this came from. (TW)

Jackie Shane – ‘Any Other Way’
We’ve played Canadian soul-singer Jackie Shane multiple times on the GIHE radio show, and we’re including her again here because of LGBT History month. Jackie was a pioneer for transgender rights in the 60s & 70s, a time when being your true self was not always welcomed, or accepted. (GIHE)

Pom Pom Squad – ‘Cellophane’ (FKA Twigs cover) 
A stirring, grunge-inspired take on one of 2019’s most popular tracks, this is Brooklyn indie-punks’ Pom Pom Squad’s cover of FKA Twigs’ single ‘Cellophane’. The band have treated Twigs’ material graciously, and frontwoman Mia Berrin’s vocals are as poignant as those on the original recording. (KC)

Half Waif – ‘Ordinary Talk’
The new single from Hudson Valley-based Nandi Rose, aka Half Waif, ‘Ordinary Talk’ is a reflection on coming to accept and find the beauty in being like everyone else. A truly spellbinding slice of poignant alt-pop, it’s filled with captivating glitchy hooks and the raw emotion of Rose’s rich soulful vocals, reminding me of later Radiohead, which is no bad thing. The Caretaker, the new album from Half Waif, is out 27th March via ANTI records. (ML)

Hilary Woods – ‘Tongues Of Wild Boar’ 
A shadowy, captivating exploration of intense discomfort; Sacred Bones signee Hilary Woods has shared this track, lifted from her upcoming album Birthmarks, due on 13th March. Though quiet in terms of volume, Woods’ new single is a fleshy, charged offering that allows her the space to navigate “emotionally charged states” at a pace suited to her. (KC)

Planningtorock – ‘Beulah Loves Dancing’
Planningtorock is on of GIHE fave artists, and they’re one of our fave LGBT artists too. LGBT History month feels like the perfect time to give them a spin again. This track is all about their sister, Beulah, and her love of house music. (GIHE)

GUIDE & PLAYLIST: The Great Escape 2018

The Great Escape Festival kicks off in just 7 days time (17th-19th May), and we’re ready to tread Brighton’s pebble beach, chomp on some chips, and trek around town trying to catch the best new music acts.

The prolific 3-day event is renowned for championing new music from all genres, and their female-friendly line-up (which Mari celebrated in her recent article about women & festival lineups for Trash) features some of our all time favourite bands. Dream Wife, Queen Zee, REWS, Pillow Queens & Amaroun will all be strutting their stuff by the seaside over the course of the weekend, but we’re excited to discover some brand new talent too.

In alphabetical order, these are the artists we’re keen to catch at 2018’s Great Escape Festival. Scroll down to our Spotify playlist to get better acquainted with them, and make a note of their stage times too…

Audiobooks
Playing at: HORATIOS – 3:30pm Friday 18th

Art School Girlfriend
Playing at: THE WALRUS – 8:15pm Friday 18th

Amaroun
Playing at: THE WALRUS – 8:15pm, Thursday 17th

Amyl & The Sniffers
Playing at: PRINCE ALBERT 11:10pm – Friday 18th & BEACH HOUSE 12:50pm – Saturday 19th

Benin City
Playing at: PAGANINI BALLROOM (THE OLD SHIP) – 11:15pm Saturday 19th

Brooke Bentham
Playing at: PATTERNS (UPSTAIRS) – 6:15pm Friday 18th

CHROMA
Playing at: LATEST MUSIC BAR – 12:45pm Thursday 17th

Deep Throat Choir
Playing at: SALLIS BENNEY THEATRE – 10:15pm Saturday 19th

Dream Wife
Playing at: BEACH CLUB – 8:45pm Thursday 17th

Elsa Hewitt
Playing at: KOMEDIA STUDIO BAR – 11:45pm Saturday 19th

Flohio
Playing at: EAST WING (BRIGHTON CENTRE) – 6:15pm Thursday 17th
KOMEDIA STUDIO BAR – 3:30pm Saturday 19th
SHOOSHH – 9:30pm Saturday 19th

Girlhood
Playing at: DR. MARTENS STAGE – 12:45pm Thursday 17th
THE HAUNT – 7:30pm Thursday 17th

Goat Girl
Playing at: THE ARCH – 9:15pm Thursday 17th

Hatchie
Playing at: KOMEDIA – 12:50pm Thursday 17th
HORATIOS – 1:00pm Friday 18th
THE ARCH – 6:00pm Friday 18th

Hero Fisher
Playing at: QUEENS HOTEL – 1:30pm Saturday 18th

Japanese Breakfast
Playing at: KOMEDIA – 11:15pm Thursday 17th

Jealous Of The Birds
Playing at: BAU WOW – 9:15pm Thursday 17th
JUBILEE SQUARE – 2:00pm Friday 18th

Men I Trust
Playing at: KOMEDIA – 7:15pm Thursday 17th

Nao
Playing at: BEACH CLUB – 10:00pm Friday 18th

Nelson Can
Playing at: DR. MARTENS STAGE – 1:00pm Friday 18th
STICKY MIKE’S FROG BAR – 10:30pm Saturday 19th

The Orielles
Playing at: BEACH HOUSE – 2:30pm Thursday 17th
HORATIOS – 9:00pm Thursday 17th

Phoebe Bridgers
Playing at: KOMEDIA – 9:15pm Friday 18th

Pillow Queens
Playing at: PRINCE ALBERT – 1:00pm Thursday 17th

Partner
Playing at: GREEN DOOR STORE – 1:30pm Thursday 17th
GREEN DOOR STORE – 7:15pm Thursday 17th
THE WALRUS – 2:15pm Saturday 18th

Queen Zee
Playing at: THE HOPE AND RUIN – 10:45pm Thursday 17th

REWS
Playing at: BEACH HOUSE – 9:15pm Friday 18th

The Regrettes
Playing at: HORATIOS 11:15pm Saturday

Soccer Mommy
Playing at: BEACH CLUB – 7:30pm Thursday 17th

Snail Mail
Playing at: BEACH CLUB – 6:30pm Thursday 17th

Stella Donnelly
Playing at: KOMEDIA – 8:15pm Thursday 17th
UNITARIAN CHURCH – 7:45pm Friday 18th
DR. MARTENS STAGE – 1:20pm Saturday 19th

The Ninth Wave
Playing at: HORATIOS – 3:30pm Thursday 17th
THE HAUNT – 9:30pm Friday 18th
MARINE ROOM (HARBOUR HOTEL) – 10:15pm Saturday 19th

The Vegan Leather
Playing at: HORATIOS – 1:45pm Thursday 17th
STICKY MIKE’S FROG BAR – 8:15pm Friday 18th

 

Get your tickets for The Great Escape here.

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut

Julie Hawk’s Top Ten Female Artists @ Liverpool Sound City

With Liverpool Sound City coming up this weekend, we spoke to Julie from GIHE favourites HAWK about her top ten picks of female bands and artists to catch at the festival.

HAWK will be playing at Liverpool Sound City on Saturday 5th May at Birdies Bar for The Local.

Read about Julie’s picks here (including some of our own faves!), and have a listen to the playlist in preparation for the weekend!

Average Sex – Ugly Strangers
I can’t think of a better time of year to discover this band. Hazy summer slacker vibes
summing up my lowest-common-denominator feelings with sweet guitar refrains and
refreshingly blunt lyrics.

Peaness – Same Place
Super hooky with really satisfying vocal harmonies throughout. I am dancing in the mirror in
the ’90s all over again.

The Orielles – Sugar Tastes Like Salt
I have been wanting to see this band for ages, mostly because Mari from GIHE always has
such good things to say about them! Sugary guitar sounds cut through dissonant hooks and
dripping attitude. Roll on LSC!

Wye Oak – Civilian
Okay, I know Wye Oak has released plenty of stunning music since ‘Civilian’ but this song
gives me such intense nostalgia for my early days in London trying to find some foothold in
music. I love how it constantly rumbles forward from a place of reflection to one of intense
movement and presence.

Maria Kelly – Small Talk
My friend and label-buddy. This woman’s voice has a special place in my soul.

Amaroun – Made a Fire
This is just wonderfully dreamy, infectious alt-pop. But there’s nothing throw-away about it – the depth and tone of her voice takes her music from catchy to deeply resonant.

Super Organism – Everybody Wants to be Famous
When I first heard this song, I decided immediately that it would probably be the soundtrack
to my summer. That was back in January, so we’re nearly there.

Berries – Faults
I saw these guys last summer at Head for the Hills and was totally floored. Since then, their music has been there for me when I need to not give a fuck. Thanks Berries!

Rews – Shine
This band are an absolute power-house and deserve all the attention they’re getting right
now. I’m told they must be seen live to be believed, so they are top of my LSC bucket list!

Gaffatape Sandy – Beehive
Probably my favourite new discovery from the LSC line-up! Energetic garage punk with
interweaving lead vocals. For nights when pre-drinks turns into a perfectly messy house
party.

PLAYLIST: May 2018

Bin your umbrellas and bust out your sunglasses: May marks the beginning of UK Festival season! Whatever the weather, we’ve got a brand new collection of music to see you through the next month. Maybe you’re going to see Bjork or The XX at All Points East (25th May – 2nd June), or perhaps you’re treading the pebbles for The Great Escape Festival in Brighton (17th-19th May)? Either way, scroll through our tracks and listen to our Spotify playlist for new music inspiration…

Yeah Yeah Yeahs – ‘Zero’
All Points East Festival kicks off on May 25th with headliners LCD Soundsystem in Victoria Park, and Yeah Yeah Yeahs are performing on the same bill. They have four albums worth of gems to pick from, but I’ve chosen ‘Zero’ from 2009’s It’s Blitz! purely because I love watching Karen O parade through the streets in her studded leather jacket in the accompanying video. I’m planning to mimic her every move/cry when I hear it live (it’s my birthday, and I’ll cry if I want to). (Kate Crudgington)

Janelle Monae – Pynk (feat. Grimes)
What a song, what a woman. The first note of ‘PYNK’ right the way through to the end is pure and simple PLEASURE. Janelle Monae collaborating with Grimes has delivered us a pure slice of vagina-pop, where the video is as important as the music. The description of which declares “PYNK is a brash celebration of creation. Self love. Sexuality. And p-ssy power!” Need I say more. (Tash Walker)

Amaroun – ‘Indecisive’ 
Written about emerging from a period of deep denial, ‘Indecisive’ – Amaroun’s latest captivating single – oozes a sweeping emotive power and heartfelt lyrical richness. And, as Jay Brown’s stirring vocals sing the perfectly relatable “I can agoraphobic, London can be overwhelming. Yes, I am addicted, I’ve learnt to live through all the noise”, it’s impossible not to be completely swept away by this dreamy sonic delight. (Mari Lane)

Elsa Hewitt – ‘Catvision’ 
My favourite festival – The Great Escape – takes place this month, and I’ve started putting together a list of artists I want to catch when I’m down in Brighton. The experimental electronic sounds of Elsa Hewitt have been swirling around my skull since I discovered her on the website, so I’m keen to hear ‘Catvision’ live when she plays at the KOMEDIA Studio Bar on Saturday 19th. (KC)

Alyss – ‘Envirus’
Producer and singer Alyss’ EP 3EARTH was released last week and it is gold. Taken from the EP, Envirus is dense in its electronic production, tribal in its beats and soulful in the vocals – needless to say the results are addictive. (TW)

Art School Girlfriend – ‘Measures’
Another artist I’m hoping to catch at The Great Escape, I’ve been soothed by the somber, subdued sounds of Art School Girlfriend. She’ll be playing at The Walrus on Friday 18th. (KC)

Rookes – ‘The Game And The River’
Having supported the likes of Stealing Sheep and She Makes War and set to play at The Great Escape later this month, Birmingham artist Rookes graces our ears with her new single ‘The Game And The River’. Filled with the stirring passion of her deep emotion-strewn vocals, it flows with twinkling folk-tinged melodies and a subtle, soulful splendour, making for a truly uplifting slice of heart-warming alt-pop. (ML)

LIINES – ‘Cold’ 
Manchester trio LIINES have been a long term favourite of ours, especially since blowing us all away their riotous, impassioned energy at The Finsbury a couple of months back, and so we’re beyond excited that their brand new, debut album is due for release on Friday! An immense blast of post-punk perfection, latest single ‘Cold’ is an epic taster of what’s to come. (ML)

Chroma – ‘Vampires’
Chroma were recommended to me by the marvellous Queen Zee (interview coming soon to the website!), so I’m chuffed that both bands will be in Brighton for The Great Escape. I’m excited to see Chroma in the flesh at Latest Music Bar on Thursday 17th – potentially my first gig of the festival! (KC)

Suzie Stapleton – ‘Negative Prophet’
Exuding a dark, brooding atmosphere, ‘Negative Prophet’ is Suzie Stapleton’s protest in an oversaturated world where the powerful feed on the powerless. As the immense power of her deep, raw vocals drift alongside reverb-strewn, blues-ridden hooks, it’s a majestic, and spine-tinglingly captivating, creation. We can’t wait to see Suzie headline for us at The Finsbury next Friday, 11th May! (ML)

Men I Trust – ‘Show Me How’
Canada’s Men I Trust first came to my attention when elusive electronic producer H1987 remixed their track ‘You Deserve This’. I love the reassuring nature of their psych-tinged, lo-fi indie anthems, and I’m hoping to catch them at Komedia on Thursday 17th for their Great Escape set. (KC)

i2m1 – ‘Illusion’
i2m1 is the solo recording project of Irene Carson from Colorado Springs. Starting back in 2015, it has since developed into a multimedia project featuring artist Graham Gale. Their second release Zoo is a collection of 20 songs, “one made for a year of my life..” Irene explains, which reflect her ongoing story. ‘Illusion’ is all synth-laden and dreamy pop – a big slice of me which has me going weak at the knees. (TW)

S4U – ‘Refrain ft JD Reid’
Refrain is the latest single from Londoners S4U featuring JD Reid, which is set for release on 1st June via Different Recordings. Low-slung R&B, and dark electro base all mixed together with some heavy 90s influences. Yes. Please. (TW)

Track Of The Day: Amaroun – ‘Indecisive’

Following support for recent singles ‘Bed Bugs’ and ‘Made A Fire’ from the likes of Clash, BBC Radio 1’s Huw Stephens and 6 Music’s Chris Hawkins, Jay Brown – aka Amaroun – returns to grace our ears with another simply beautiful offering.

Produced by Kristofer Harris (Ghostpoet/Belle & Sebastian/Bear’s Den), ‘Indecisive’ is about emerging from a period of deep denial. Flowing with Brown’s smooth, soulful vocals and catchy, twinkling hooks, it oozes a sweeping emotive power and a heartfelt lyrical richness. And, as her stirring vocals sing the perfectly relatable “I can agoraphobic, London can be overwhelming. Yes, I am addicted, I’ve learnt to live through all the noise”, it’s impossible not to be completely swept away by this dreamy, captivating sonic delight, marking Amaroun out as a truly unique artist.

Of the track, Amaroun explains:

“It’s set right around that point where you’re making peace with yourself and your decisions… This song is about the future, and that’s where I’m looking now. And I really can’t wait for everyone to hear the songs we’re writing and recording at the moment – summer’s coming and we’re getting our dancing shoes on!”

Catch Amaroun live on tour throughout May and June, including dates supporting Laura Viers. More info here.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

WATCH: Amaroun – ‘Made A Fire’

Following support for her debut single ‘Bed Bugs’ from the likes of Clash, BBC Radio 1’s Huw Stephens and 6 Music’s Chris Hawkins, Amaroun returns to grace our ears with another captivating offering.

Flowing with the soaring, rich vocals of Jay Brown, ‘Made A Fire’ is filled with catchy, twinkling hooks and a subtle emotion-strewn power that’ll cast you under its spell on first listen. Oozing an effervescent ethereal haze and soulful splendour, it’s an instantly uplifting, and totally dreamy, sonic delight.

Of the track, Brown explains:

“The song was written in a heightened state, in the aftermath of my coming out… I’ve found clarity in the thrill of meeting someone new. When you find that person and there’s this instant connection you can’t deny, it’s something that’s hard to describe. This song is simply gratitude in musical form for that person and that feeling.”

Watch the new video for ‘Made A Fire’ here:

Catch Amaroun live:

6th March – Archspace, London (Headline gig)
5th May – Liverpool Sound City

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Photo Credit: Anna Mich

Get In Her Ears w/ Amaroun

Back with a bang, Kate and Tash brought you a carefully curated set of brand new music for your listening pleasure. Joined in the studio by Amaroun who played two live tracks, alongside giving them the lowdown on her 2018 adventures and her headline show at Archspace on 6th March 2018.

Highlights came from ARXX, Black Gold Buffalo, Vivienne Chi and Sudan Archives.

Listen back to the show here: