Five Favourites: F.R.U.I.T.Y

Following the release of ‘Bela Lugosi’s Dead’ and ‘Not Quite Exceptional’, Belfast-based queer artist Dan O’Rawe – aka F.R.U.I.T.Y – has now shared the first single from their upcoming debut EP, set for release next month. Propelled by off-kilter glitchy beats, ‘U.P.S‘ offers a wonderfully quirky, futuristic soundscape whilst reflecting on themes of identity in O’Rawe’s trademark deadpan Northern Irish drawl. As twinkling hooks flow with a cinematic splendour, it’s a glistening, uplifting slice of alt-electro-pop; a perfect soundtrack to woozy summer evenings. Of the track, they comment: “… it’s the summer loving comedown. The doubt, the reflection and the ending of those summer days… something underscored by the blissed-out, but tired, mind...”

We think one of the best ways to get to know an artist is by asking what music inspires them. So, to mark the release of ‘U.P.S’ today, we caught up with Dan to ask about their “Five Favourites” – five songs that they love the most. Check out their choices below and scroll down to listen to ‘U.P.S’.

Easy Life – ‘A Message to Myself’ 
I absolutely vibe so hard with this song, there is a tremendous flow to the lyrics that I am obsessed with. It speaks for itself, just be yourself. I love how much they reflect what is happening right now. In twenty years’, time, I can picture myself feeling super nostalgic for this time already. They also sent me this little merch air freshener fish with the single, which was a fun bonus!  

Remi Wolf – ‘Shawty’ 
Whenever this song comes on, I feel energised. It is so damn fun. I love lyrics that follow a mundane narrative, I know that is bizarre, but it is just really relatable. The layered vocal style she uses is something I take inspiration from. It has an early 2000s vibe; I can feel the low-rise jeans with a thong showing energy.  

Tayo Sound – ‘Cold Feet’ 
I like how this song starts with that initial infatuation with someone, the woozy start when you are so nervous you get mad butterflies. It has a tasty hook. It is easy, breezy & fresh. I always find myself attracted to that in music. Music tends to have a big effect on my mood for the day, this song always makes me feel sunny and chill.  

Ms. White – ‘Fuck Men’ 
… because Fuck Men. Haha.  

Kojaque – ‘Town’s Dead
Some local talent representation with Kojaque. The lyrics are so well written, a deep sense of humour but making a bunch of decent points too. There is a big punk energy to this one – it sounds like it would be unreal live (hit me up for a support slot Kojaque… Or a date, whatever’s easiest for ya!).

Massive thanks to Dan for sharing their Five Favourites!

F.R.U.I.T.Y, the eponymous debut EP, is set for release on 5th August. Listen to new single ‘U.P.S’ now:

FIVE FAVOURITES: Das Beat

Formed during lockdown in 2020 to counteract chronic boredom and reignite their creative spark, Berlin-based duo Das Beat craft quirky electronic tunes with an indie disco edge. Together, German actress & vocalist Eddie Rabenberger and Canadian musician Agor (Blue Hawaii) blend elements of new wave, synth pop and disco to create their playful and provocative tunes, which culminated in the release of their debut EP, Identität, earlier this year.

We think one of the best ways to get to know a band is by asking what music inspired them to write in the first place. We caught up with Eddie to ask her about her “Five Favourites” – five songs that have inspired her song-writing techniques. Check out her choices below and scroll down to listen to Das Beat’s single ‘Jackie’ at the end of this post.

 

1. John Cale – ‘Dying on the Vine’ (Accoustic Version)
This song has been one of my favourites for many years. I can’t help but to default to it when I am with a group of friends and everyone starts playing songs for each other. The version I love is from a live concert Cale plays with Nick Cave, only piano and vocals. It’s a great concert but especially this song sticks out to me. I love the rhythm of the voice and the lyrics. It just makes me happy and a little sad and that’s the way I love it.

2. Luis Ake – ‘Liebe’
I must mention this amazing German contemporary artist. He writes beautiful lyrics and songs. Especially in the new song ‘Liebe’ it all comes beautifully together to me. This song is about falling out of love with someone but instead when you listen you just have to fall in love with the music. There is also a great music video made from Tereza Mundilova, it’s super and I definitely recommend watching and letting yourself be carried away by the beautiful tunes of Luis Ake.

3. Brutalismus 3000 – ‘Good Girl’
A new band from the Berlin underground scene. But I am sure soon they will be known internationally. You listen to the music and you wanna dance – this is what being in a club should sound like. Amazing beats by Theo Zeitner joined by the incredible vocalist Victoria Daldas. When I listen to their songs it makes me feel powerful and strong and on top of the world. This song is about how impossible it is to be a “good girl” and that as a woman you can not do anything right, you’re always blamed for the actions of others. It is simple but genius and I hope soon everyone will party to this gorgeous music.

4. Gina X Performance – ‘Be a Boy’
Such an icon. Gina Kikoin is such a wonderful queer figure from the German 80`s scene. The song gave me strength as a little girl, not having to be the classical girl that society wanted. Helping to break out of gender conformity. Now I feel more secure with my self and also my “femininity”, but Gina X Performance definitely helped me on the way to define myself on my own terms, not others. It was a little hard here to choose one song, because to be honest all her albums are great.

5. Grace Jones – ‘I’ve Seen That Face Before’
Every time this song comes on it gives me the goosebumps, it’s so mystical and elegant. My fantasy immediately goes wild and then Grace’s beautiful voice comes in and I am gone. I can connect with the feeling and the lyrics. I love Grace Jones and it would be crazy not to mention her here.

Thanks to Eddie for sharing her favourites with us!

Follow Das Beat on Spotify & Instagram for more updates.

Photo Credit: Peter Zeitner

Five Favourites: Oh Baby

Having charmed our ears with the slick sounds of their last single ‘Cruel Intention’, London-Manchester duo Oh Baby are set to release their new album Hey Genius later this month.

Consisting of Jen Devereux and Rick Hornby, the duo have now shared another taster of the forthcoming album. ‘L.I.A.R‘ flows with a swirling, euphoric haze as Devereux’s rich, sultry vocals are accompanied by a majestic, ’80s-inspired glitchy drive. An utterly captivating, truly blissful, summer anthem leaving us eager to hear the album in full.

We think one of the best ways to get to know an artist is by asking what music inspired them to write in the first place. So, to mark the release of Hey Genius later this month, we caught up with Jen to ask about her “Five Favourites” – five songs that have shaped her as a musician. Check out her choices below and scroll down to listen to new single ‘L.I.A.R’.

Philip Oakley & Giorgio Moroder – ‘Together In Electric Dreams’
As far back as I can remember I have had a major thing for this song and it still has the same effect on me now when listening to it that it did the first time I heard its muffled tone playing through my bedroom wall from the next door room. It made my world stop for a second. It’s melancholic but euphoric and romantic all at once, a combination I still find fascinating. Right from the first notes of the intro, I swear my heart beats a little faster wherever I am. The rising chord progression is totally addictive. The other worldly “together in electric dreams” lyric captivated me, whilst the melody underneath was lifting, the sentiment was lost lovers and missed nights together – this juxtaposition turned something on in me which has never turned off. The classic fade out where the vocal continues makes you feel like you’re being dragged away from the party early, doing its job brilliantly. For me it’s been an unfaltering musical constant, showing that perfection can exist in its own way, and this for me, is it. I guess this was my first introduction to Phil Oakey, Giorgio Moroder and electronic music in general, little did I know how important the tiny markers this song would leave on me would be. 

Cole Porter – ‘You’re The Top’
I got taken to musicals in London when I was young and I found the excitement of being inside a theatre pretty intoxicating. I suppose that, coupled with seeing the cliched ‘big city lights’ in sharp contrast to the endless grey North I mostly experienced growing up, made it all the more attractive. The smell of it, the sounds, the stage, the orchestra pit, the hum of a settling audience, the lights through darkness, I loved it. It was three hours of escapism and like a shot of liquid gold. Granted, the music written for musicals is pretty far removed from the stuff Rick and I are writing now but Cole Porter especially has a mesmerising way with words and how he marries them together – it’s a pure joy to listen to. I’m not ashamed to say I still know every word from this musical Anything Goes, but this particular song stands out. It’s totally relentless; it illustrated to me rhythm, rhyme and humour, also the art of the call and answer, how the opposites, the dark and light, are all so important in good music. He’s a clever sod. 

Madonna – ‘Borderline’
So this track evokes the smell of hot tarmac pavements and roadworks, petrol fumes, long hot summers when the back door seemed to be constantly open – carefree hanging around, freshly mown grass, back to back houses on endless streets, but most importantly being in love with a particular older girl on the street who just so happened to be obsessed with Madonna. ‘Borderline’ naturally became my soundtrack to all of the above. Her young American voice sounded so exotic, cutting into my life like a bolt of lightning. It woke me up to what I wanted on many levels; back then I had no way of knowing how I could get it, but knowing you actually do want something is a bloody good start. The sound of that bass line coupled with her high vocal riding over was so alluring and so sexy. I had no clue what it was all about but as a result of that feeling it gave me, I was and still remain totally hooked. 

Kate Bush – ‘Running Up That Hill’  
A huge amount of what intrigues me and makes me feel something, also scares me. Strong women, whilst being totally inspiring, also scared me half to death, and Kate Bush was no exception. Watching her red lips and masses of dark hair and her untouchable womanly persona – the strangeness of this music video too – I found it wonderfully terrifying. I liken it to sitting through a horror film with your eyes closed and fingers in your ears, you don’t want to see or hear it but you can’t switch it off as there’s a part of the whole experience that is totally thrilling. This track is the one that is just too damn good. I’m not a massive fan of the over used label ‘genius’, but I think this track certainly warrants the word to be close by. As soon as I hear the first beat it’s slightly overwhelming to be honest. The drums, that lyric, those sounds she’s recorded using a bloody Fairlight. Oh bugger it, it’s genius. Now, she really is a clever sod. 

The Police – ‘Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic’
My older brother had a house party – I’m seven years younger, so this for me was brilliant. For a lot of his friends it was their first proper party they’d have been to with girls and boys and music and stolen alcohol, so that electric young teenage excitement was palpable. I felt and heard it all through the floorboards of my bedroom and I totally soaked it up. They played The Police Greatest Hits – loud. I didn’t sleep, I just listened – I can’t have been more than 7 or 8 years old. I asked some of the older kids about the music they’d been playing the next morning and that was my introduction to one of the greatest bands I know. This particular song is just wonderful. Only three people, making that sound, the way he sings over that fade out outro with yet another melody – “it’s a big enough umbrella but it’s always me that ends up getting wet” – what can I say. The way Copeland smacks the living daylights out of that snare, the weird piano, I mean come on. Let’s hope even a tiny amount of greatness from this possibly seeps into what we do as Oh Baby, ‘cos put this on and I. Will. Dance.

Massive thanks to Jen from Oh Baby for sharing her Five Favourites! Upcoming album Hey Genius is set for release on 23rd July via Burning Witches Records. Pre-order here and listen to new single ‘L.I.A.R’ below:

You can also catch Oh Baby live at The Lexington to celebrate their album release on 23rd July. Tickets here.

Photo Credit: Karen Hornby

Five Favourites: 45AcidBabies

Having first caught our attention with recent single ‘Mommy’s Favorite 1’, Dutch garage punks 45ACIDBABIES have now returned with a vibrant new single. A fizzing slice of alt-pop, ‘Only Class6 From Now On‘ is propelled by a colourful energy as scuzzed-out hooks provide the backdrop for the soaring sultry power of Sophia De Geus’ vocals. Fusing together a rippling psychedelic haze with buoyant bubblegum pop, it features ADAM on guest vocals, creating a wonderfully eccentric and instantly infectious sonic-comic cacophony.

We think one of the best ways to get to know an artist is by asking what music inspired them to write in the first place. So, to mark the release of ‘Only Class6 From Now On’ today, we caught up with Sophia from the band to ask about her “Five Favourites” – five albums that have shaped her as a musician. Check out her choices below and scroll down to watch the brand new video for ‘Only Class6 From Now On’ at the end of the feature.

Lady GaGa – The Fame
I think Lady Gaga is our favourite pop queen of all. Both as a persona and as a songwriter. The Fame is an album filled with absolute bangers. Apart from the music, she also got me into fashion. Did you see her at the Met Gala 2019?! That was insane (the looks actually inspired the artwork of our new single). And there are so many hits on The Fame! ‘Just Dance’ itself was already iconic. I was 12 years old at the time and all my classmates were coming up with dance routines to perform on the weekly talent show our school was having. My favourite song of the album at the time was ‘Paper Gangsta’, but I’ll admit… I only said that because no one else would pick that song and I wanted to have a different opinion than my classmates. Now I’m pretty sure ‘Paparazzi’ is my favourite. Music video included. I love it. 

St. Vincent – St Vincent
I got into St. Vincent when we had a school assignment where we were dedicated to learn ‘Digital Witness’ and play it exactly how she meant it. I typed it in on YouTube and I was instantly obsessed with Annie Clarke. She is so beautiful and artistic. She has been a major inspiration for many Acidbabies songs. I love her songwriting, her way of showing femininity and her innovative way of playing the guitar. Mostly her interpretation of FUZZ. If it wasn’t for her I would have never bought my favourite instrument: The ZVEX Mastotron. 

The Kills – Midnight Boom
This is one of our oldest inspirations. When we didn’t care much about songwriting and pop music yet I got most of my inspiration from Alison Mosshart’s presence on stage. She is very bold and her movements are tight and thrilling. Also: this album sounds sooo SEXY! They are so good at combining rock and roll with electronic music. Such a big inspiration to us. I’m also a very big fan of Jaime Hince. His way of playing guitar reminds me of having a big growling wolf on the leash and just giving it the right amount of space. The Kills inspired me to acquire a pedal as well: DD3. One of the coolest delay pedals in my opinion. 

Soulwax – From Deewee
Soulwax are one of those acts that keeps amazing me time after time. I discovered them as a ’90s rock band and quickly fell in love with the quirky choices, raw drum computers, fuzzy beatbox bridges and interesting harmonies and was a fan right away. Then a few years later, I remember seeing a really good DJ act called 2ManyDJs on a Hungarian festival called Sziget. It was only after I got home I discovered that the two DJs were the same Dewaele brothers from Soulwax. They started to mix more and more electronics into their work which I loved – a personal favourite, the Nite Version of ‘Krack’. From Deewee is the summit of this journey towards the electronic. The synthesis fantasy of the Dewaele brothers seems endless. I especially like the super cool arpeggios venturing into adventurous chords that remind me of their ’90s rock days and their creative use of weird spring verbs on almost everything. What’s also super impressive to me is that they managed to keep the entire album interesting using almost the same BPM. Accompanied by three live drummers, their live show in Paradiso was one of the most impressive I’ve seen. The perfect combination between a club night and a live act.

Kero Kero Bonito – Intro Bonito
When we were kids Robin and I watched a lot of anime. Mostly Naruto. This made us big suckers for Japanese culture. I first came across Kero Kero Bonito while scrolling through the line-up of a festival I was attending. I heard ‘Sick Beat’ and I just loved it. It sounded so gamey and playful. Like there was an anime character rapping in a Casio keyboard paradise for game characters. I saw them play in a small venue and their way of performing was so different from anything else I’d ever seen. Just two DJ dudes with some cheap keyboards and Sarah singing with a stuffed animal in the form of a flamingo. How cool is that?

Massive thanks to Sophia from 45AcidBabies for sharing her Five Favourites! Watch the brand new video for ‘Only Class6 From Now On’ below: