PREMIERE: CRISP&CLASSY & Rookes – ‘BASIC’

Following 2019’s ‘Suffocate’, electro-pop duo CRISP&CLASSY (aka producer Kat Knix and singer-songwriter Plushy) pride themselves on bringing sexual liberation and self-acceptance to the UK pop scene. Now collaborating with GIHE fave, London-based artist and promoter of queer female identity, Rookes, they have shared a colourful new single.

Born of a drunken night in East London, ‘BASIC’ is a vibrant, uplifting dance-floor anthem. Propelled by glitchy beats and electro-driven hooks alongside the luscious, sweeping vocals of Rookes, it blasts into the ears with an explosive queer energy. Oozing all the sassy, soulful and sparkling vibes you could ever desire, it offers a rich, buoyant soundscape that’ll leave you ready to get up and vogue around the living room in style. A truly empowering offering, it’s an effervescent ode to being yourself and silencing anyone who chooses to get in your way.

Listen to ‘Basic’ for the first time here:

‘BASIC’ is out tomorrow, 14th May. And keep your eyes and peeled for new albums from CRISP&CLASSY and Rookes, both set to drop this summer.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Track Of The Day: Fightmilk – ‘Overbite’

Following last year’s ‘If You Had A Sister’ and ‘I’m Starting To Think You Don’t Even Want To Go To Space’, GIHE faves Fightmilk have now announced the release of their second album, out next month via Reckless Yes.

Taken from the album, ‘Overbite’ marks a maturing in sound for the band whilst maintaining their trademark anthemic power-pop energy. Propelled by jangling melodies and the endearing, refreshing honesty of its lyricism, the track oozes a subtle romanticism and tongue-in-cheek wit. As the raw emotion and distinctive smooth-yet-husky charm of front-person Lily’s vocals deliver a heartwarming sentiment (“You don’t have to smile if you don’t want to darling, you’re perfect as you are”) alongside scuzzed-out riffs and an infectious, shimmering energy, Fightmilk have created the perfect, alternative fuzzy love-song, complete with their distinctive, quirky charisma and a comforting warmth. A gently uplifting, twinkling slice of blissful indie-pop showcasing a band that are continuously refining their sound and, in the process, consistently continuing to win my heart.

Of the track, the band explain:

We decided to double down: synths, gang vocals and pick scrapes, oh my! This is one of the most uplifting, happy songs we’ve written, and by bookending the album with big joyful explosions, maybe it’ll do something to soothe the collective woe we’ve all been living through.”

‘Overbite’ is accompanied by a super cute animated video created by Jono Ganz, portraying a narrative about perceptions of beauty. Watch it now:

‘Overbite’ is out now. Contender, the upcoming new album from Fightmilk, is set for release on 14th May via Reckless Yes. Pre-order via bandcamp now.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Five Favourites: Becky CJ

Having received support from the likes of 1883 Magazine and Amazing Radio, as well as being featured in the likes of The Independent and Huffington Post for her ‘Tinder Nightmares’ TikTok series, queer artist Becky CJ has now shared her poignant new single. Ahead of the release of her upcoming EP next month, ‘I Think I’m In Love With My Best Friend’ oozes a heartfelt splendour and twinkling emotion, creating a shimmering and stirring slice of alt-pop.

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. We caught up with Becky to ask about her “Five Favourites” – five albums or songs that have shaped her as a musician. Check out her choices below and scroll down to listen to ‘I Think I’m In Love With My Best Friend’ at the end of the feature.

Susanne Sundfør – Ten Love Songs
Hearing Susanne Sundfør for the first time was a big moment for me. She truly epitomises what I love in music; drama, musicality, unpredictability and emotion. This album has been on repeat for me for years, in particular ‘Delirious’ and ‘Fade Away’. The way she explores this ’80s synth pop sound but pairs it with her classical influence and singer/songwriter style is just magical to my ears. Each song on the album does something different and takes you somewhere else emotionally. I predominantly remember seeing her play most of the album at Latitude Festival in 2015 and literally just crying throughout. I think she felt like one of the first contemporary female artists that I felt represented the musical world that I wanted to inhabit.

Alison Krauss and Union Station –  Paper Aeroplane
Alison Krauss was an artist who we listened to a lot growing up; both my parents were massive fans of her beautiful voice and songs. This album for me is one that I can listen to from beginning to end and I never get bored. I think I’ve always had a bit of a soft spot for country/bluegrass music and this album marries those elements perfectly for me. Alison Krauss’s voice is one of my all time favourites and on this album it just melts me. My favourite track is ‘Lay My Burden Down’, which is a song about releasing yourself of worries, and it’s just super feel good.

Frank Ocean – Channel Orange
This is another album I can listen to from start to end, sing along to most of the lyrics and never ever get bored of. There is literally just no one like Frank Ocean, his songwriting is mesmerising. I feel this album covers a whole host of genres and experiments so much with song form but somehow still feels like a cohesive piece of art. ‘Bad Religion’ was the song that I think initially gripped me the most, the lyrics were so vulnerable and the melody so emotional, but it was still so cool. That has to be the perfect combination for any song, right?! I think the common denominator for me in loving something is connecting to the vocal performance and me oh my, Frank’s is something else.

James Blake – ‘Into The Red’
I really love the whole Assume Form album but I wanted to highlight this song in particular as it has such a special place in my heart. I know that sounds super cringe but I don’t know how else to describe my love for this song. The lyrical concept is just genius, the idea that you love someone so much that you’d go into the ‘red’ (debt) for them is so unique but somehow so relatable!? I connect so deeply to the lyrics and then add to that James’ incredible vocals, production that is out of this world and a super unique arrangement, and I am sold. I was getting together with my partner around the same time as listening to this song on repeat so it always reminds me of her. We went to see him play at the Brixton Academy and were GUTTED because he didn’t play this one live.

Joni Mitchell – Rainy Night House
My dad played me this song when we were on holiday when I was about 13 or 14. I remember curling up on the sofa, putting the headphones on and begrudgingly listening in that way you do when your parents want to show you something at that age. I listened to the whole song, then listened again and then again. I had never properly listened to any Joni Mitchell, I knew the classics but hadn’t taken the time to get to know any more. The storytelling was so absorbing, I couldn’t believe that in this three minute song she’d basically told me the beginning, middle and end of a story and I felt I knew all the characters. Since then I’ve always gone back to listen to this song when I’m feeling introspective or in need of a reminder of true, classic song writing.

Massive thanks to Becky for sharing her Five Favourites with us! Ahead of the release of her upcoming EP Woman next month, listen to ‘I Think I’m In Love With My Best Friend’ now:

Track Of The Day: Foxgluvv – ‘1:00am’

A playful, funky disco-pop tune designed to be the soundtrack to your late night solo bedroom karaoke session, self proclaimed “dyke pop princess” Foxgluvv has shared her latest single ‘1:00am’. Full of lush vocals, shimmering electronics and dancing beats, the track marks the beginning of the popstar’s new musical direction, but still fizzes with her trademark sultry charm.

After taking a break from music and releasing a fun cover of Lady Gaga’s ‘Beautiful, Dirty, Rich‘ in November last year, Foxgluvv has channelled her love of 70s disco and camp extravagance into her latest musical offering. Working alongside her long time collaborator Scott Colcombe, on new single ‘1:00am’ Foxgluvv explores the melancholy thoughts that run through her mind in the small hours during a restless night. Colcombe’s polished production gives her anxious notions a confident sheen, as her dreamy vocals float above dancing rhythms and retro-pop synths.

Foxgluvv has also shared a self-directed music video to accompany the single, which she explains is a “classic ode to the history of disco aesthetics mixed in with contemporary pop set-ups,” influenced by her love of LGBTQ+ music scenes.

Watch the video for ‘1:00am’ below.

Follow Foxgluvv on bandcampSpotifyInstagramTwitter & Facebook

Photo Credit: Abby Robson

Kate Crudgington
@KCBobCut