Track Of The Day: Bestfriend – ‘Hannah In The City’

Hannah In The City’, the lead single from Bestfriend’s upcoming EP, is a beautiful contradiction. Written and produced by the duo, its confessional lyrics and DIY sensibility feel cosy and intimate, while the dreamy, brilliantly arranged synths and Stacy Kim’s stunning vocals, buoyed by Kaelen Geoffrey’s sweet harmonies, give it a lush glossy pop finish.

The song’s subject matter – regret and missed opportunities – follows suit. As Kim explains, “It’s a happy-sad-angry reminiscing song all about the idea that a relationship might not have fallen apart if we’d just done this or that – all while knowing in the back of your head that it was obviously doomed to fail in the first place.”

This is grown-up bedroom electro pop, simultaneously beautiful and bittersweet. Kim and Geoffrey write songs long distance, over email. But you’d never guess. As the band’s name suggests, there’s a real connection, and the duo’s storytelling and ideas marry together as harmoniously as their voices. It’s truly magical. 

‘Hannah In The City’ is taken from Bestfriend’s upcoming EP Places I’ve Lived, which is set for release on 1st October.

Vic Conway

Photo Credit: Maxine Tamoto

Track Of The Day: girlhouse – ‘concussion’

A hazy, bitter sweet reflection on the unexpected challenges of overcoming heartbreak, US bedroom-pop artist girlhouse has shared her latest single ‘concussion’. Taken from her upcoming record the second EP, the track is a gentle, lo-fi offering inspired by girlhouse aka Lauren Luiz’s own experience of being involved in a both physical and emotional car crash.

“‘concussion’ is about a monumentally shit day,” Luiz explains. “My first and favorite car got smashed (it was a bright orange 81 Honda Civic with a stick shift), next thing I knew I was lying on the ground, being harassed by LA firemen while a woman was screaming at me calling me a dumb bitch. I just have no idea what happened, all I could think about was this person that had just broken my heart, somehow nothing else mattered. I think I used that relationship as a distraction in a big way, it was that moment where I realized that person was taking up a lot of mental real estate and I needed to make room for actual problems in my life and move on.”

Luiz has transformed her ruminations on this traumatic event into a bright, playful slice of bedroom-pop. Moving on from the anxiety that underscored her debut self-titled EP, girlhouse’s new efforts look set to be just as emotive, but more mature in sound and delivery.

Watch the video for ‘concussion’ below.

Follow girlhouse on SpotifyTwitterInstagram & Facebook

Kate Crudgington

Track Of The Day: daze – ‘star signs’

Following a debut EP that raised £240 for Mind, ‘star signs’ is the new track from indie dream-pop duo daze. Written in February, the band say they’ve aimed for a mix of “sparkly guitars and warm synths” to create a perfect summer vibe.

I think they have absolutely nailed that. If nothing else, daze have proven that they are extremely competent when it comes to bringing their concepts to life. The fact that they manage to write, produce, mix and master the track entirely from their bedroom is a testament to their talent.

The different layers of the song fit together so well that it feels a lot more polished than you’d expect from even the most technically proficient homebrew. Having said that, I don’t think it’s lost any of the raw charm of DIY tunes. It has a lot of warmth and energy that only comes from a piece of art that someone has poured their heart into as they craft it.

The song itself is light and relaxed, but upbeat. The strings twinkle over the rich synths, eddying gently from riff to riff in a way that you can’t help but get carried along. Between the sparkles, the flow and the way it eventually fades away, ‘star signs’ captures the brightness and colour of summer sunsets using only sound.

It really is impressive how daze have managed to make such an evocative piece of music; a soundscape that inspires you to close your eyes and completely lose yourself in the scenes it creates. Particularly given it hit me with exactly that sensation on one of the drizzliest, dreariest days of the summer so far.

Kirstie Summers

Track Of The Day: Smoothboi Ezra – ‘Stuck’

A tender, lo-fi offering that explores the struggle of feeling emotionally stunted or unable to communicate in an unsteady relationship, Irish multi-instrumentalist & producer Smoothboi Ezra has shared their latest single ‘Stuck’. Taken from their upcoming EP of the same name, which is set for release on 11th June, the track is a poignant meditation on the reluctance we encounter when facing the end of our romantic involvement with someone.

“‘Stuck’ is a song about being in a relationship with someone you care a lot about but you know it’s not going to work out,” Ezra explains “It’s an unsaid mutual agreement that you can feel the relationship ending but you’re both waiting on the other person to end it.” Ezra balances these emotional tensions via soft vocals, raw lyricism and gently plucked guitar strings.

As a gender non-conforming artist who is also on the autism spectrum, Ezra offers a different perspective on heartbreak and emotional intelligence, creating captivating, bittersweet soundscapes to contemplate the struggles of everyday life to. At the age of just 19, their talent for writing charming songs about personal growth is humbling and highly impressive.

Watch the video for ‘Stuck’ below.

Follow Smoothboi Ezra on bandcamp, Spotify, Twitter, Instagram & Facebook

Photo Credit: Leon McCulloughl

Kate Crudgington