Track Of The Day: Opal Onyx – ‘Lover’s Toil’

A cinematic reflection about the risks we take when trying to find love, Brooklyn-based duo Opal Onyx have shared their latest single ‘Lover’s Toil’. Taken from their upcoming album Vessel, which is set for release on 4th December, the track blends trip-hop beats, sweeping electronics and emotive vocals to enrapture listeners.

Formed of Sarah Nowicki and Matthew Robinson, Opal Onyx take their name from the shiny opal gemstone and the opaque darkness of onyx, exploring the light and the dark that balances our world. On ‘Lover’s Toil’, the duo navigate the cautious yet unpredictable nature of love, urging listeners to take a chance on it when it comes their way, and throw themeselves in head first.

Speaking about their upcoming album, the duo explain: “It’s our therapeutic vessel we can put everything in to, a form of therapy that means we can transcend everything and see our creative vision more clearly.” This cathartic outlook and willingness to open up is what makes tracks like ‘Lover’s Toil’ so tender and captivating. Listen to the track below, and follow Opal Onyx on bandcamp, Spotify and Facebook for more updates.

Kate Crudgington

Erica Freas releases new EP ‘Young’

A moving ode to friends and loved ones; Bristol-based, Olympia-born songwriter Erica Freas has shared her latest EP, Young. Released via Specialist Subject Records (and as a self-release in the USA), Freas has taken a step back from fronting punk bands and created a sentimental, soft-sounding record instead.

Recorded over the past two years, the eleven tracks on Young are all love songs for Freas’ friends who needed support during moments of big change and transition. The songwriter reflects on what inspired her to write this deeply personal record: “We’re so caught up in this moment with all the real pressures and challenges that mark our lives right now; this all-consuming moment. With these songs, I was thinking about what world we’re welcoming the next generation into and, similarly, how we approach our own futures and histories as we grow. These songs are about being alive, whether we’re new to it or have been around awhile.”

We’re enjoying Freas’ sounds that urge her listeners to slow down and appreciate the smaller things in life. Listen to Young in full below, and follow Erica Freas on Facebook and Spotify for more updates.


Erica Freas UK Tour Dates 2020
29th Feb – Bristol – radio/ON
1st Mar – London – Water Into Beer with Cristy Road Carerra
9th Mar – Brooklyn NY – Trans Pecos
14th Mar – Anacortes WA – The Business
24-26 April – Manchester Punk Fest 2020
1-8th May – European Tour (via YoYo Records)
9th May – Berlin – Miss The Stars Fest VII
7th Jul – 2000 Trees Festival UK

Kate Crudgington

Photo Credit: @gingerdope

LISTEN: Polly Money – ‘Roommate’

A sweeping, endearingly catchy ballad about falling head over heels in love; Polly Money‘s latest single ‘Roommate’ will make you go weak at the knees. Her lush vocals and hazy guitar sounds form the perfect backdrop for daydreaming about the one you love.

Polly explains the premise of the track further: “This song is the undeniable need to spend all of your hours lost in the person you love. Their place or yours it doesn’t matter as long as you are waking up next to them. It’s the surprise late night turn ups, it’s the falling head over and it’s wanting to build a home together. This song is for the hopeless romantics.”

Polly’s talent for turning universal feelings into shimmering guitar tunes has seen her support the likes of Muse and Gabrielle Aplin, as well as collaborating with new artists Denai Moore and Laurel. ‘Roommate’ is the aural equivalent of the lover’s body warmth she delights in singing about, and you can hear the track in all its live glory at Polly’s gig at Colours on 30th January (event info & tickets here).

Listen to ‘Roommate’ below, and follow Polly Money on Facebook & Spotify for more updates.

Kate Crudgington

PREMIERE: Kate Stapley – ‘Hermit’

“I’ve been pissing like a racehorse” confesses Bristol-based songwriter Kate Stapley on the opening lyric of her new single, ‘Hermit’. It’s a blunt beginning, but her soft voice quickly draws listeners in to her poignant (slightly hungover) reflections on allowing yourself to be tender again in a new relationship.

Set for release via Breakfast Records on 6th December, ‘Hermit’ forms part of a Double A-side, with second track ‘Hours’. Produced by Oliver Baldwin (Aldous Harding, PJ Harvey), these tracks are the first that Stapley has shared since her 2018 EP, Centella, and they flow in her trademark vulnerable, yet optimistic vein.

“‘Hermit’ is a love song, celebrating those moments in a relationship when you finally have the bravery to embrace everything about yourself” explains Stapley. “When you stop trying to hide the painful, embarrassing bits – realising you never needed to hide them in the first place.” Observations like this make Stapley’s music so intimately disarming, and effortlessly relatable.

“You suit me so well / You be my hermit / And I’ll be your shell” she muses during the chorus, over gently plucked acoustic guitars, and soft percussion. The song’s patient rhythm feels reflective of the self-acceptance Stapley has discovered, and it’s wonderful to hear her lay bare her insecurities, transforming them in to new found confidence.

Listen to ‘Hermit’ below, and be sure to check out her second track ‘Hours’ tomorrow when they’re both released via Breakfast Records.

Follow Kate Stapley on Facebook for more updates.

Photo Credit: Simon Holliday

Kate Crudgington