PLAYLIST: February 2021

We’ve made it through the first two months of 2021! Despite the current lockdown here in the UK, the GIHE team have been busy unearthing more new music gems to help you get through these long and tedious days. We’ve put together an eclectic mix of alt-pop gems, atmospheric electronics and gritty guitar tunes on our February playlist.

Take some time to scroll through our track choices below and make sure you hit play on the Spotify playlist at the end of this post. Follow GIHE on Spotify to hear all of our previous playlists too.

 

Scrounge – ‘Leaking Drains’
The new single from South East London duo Lucy and Luke – aka Scrounge – ‘Leaking Drains’ offers a stark soundscape reflecting on the state of society at the moment. Propelled by Lucy’s raw, snarling vocals and slashing guitar alongside Luke’s immense, thrashing beats, it builds to a colossal cacophony before coming to a disconcerting, abrupt end – only adding to the stirring tension that has built up throughout. Oozing a ferocious power, the duo have created something that is striking both in its jarring potency and rage-driven force.
(Mari Lane – Managing Editor)

HAVVK – ‘Home’
The first single to be shared from HAVVK’s upcoming new album, ‘Home’ is a stirring reflection on appreciating those closest to you. Propelled by a shimmering ethereal fuzz, the track showcases the soaring celestial majesty of front woman Julie’s vocals, as they float with an impassioned splendour over scuzzy hooks and a gritty, driving energy. Fusing together tinges of ’90s grunge-fuelled angst with twinkling shoegaze sensibilities and the band’s own unique poignant grace, it’s a truly captivating soundscape. (ML)

Softcult – ‘Another Bish’
Informed by their love of Bikini Kill and Smashing Pumpkins, alternative duo Softcult blend atmospheric guitars, energetic percussion and bittersweet vocals to create their hazy, antagonistic sounds. Formed of Ontario-based twin sisters Phoenix and Mercedes Arn Horn, this single ‘Another Bish’ was born from their desire to resist and relieve the pressures of existing in a patriarchal music industry. I had a lovely chat with the grrls over Zoom a few weeks ago which you can read here.
(Kate Crudgington – Features Editor)

New Pagans – ‘Harbour’
A tenacious celebration of women’s strength and resilience throughout pregnancy and childbirth, New Pagans’ latest single ‘Harbour’ is based on the experiences of vocalist Lyndsey McDougall’s pregnancy with her own daughter. Full of the Belfast band’s trademark urgent riffs and catchy melodies, it’s an empowering examination of the fears and triumphs that accompany this unique time in a woman’s life. I can’t wait to hear New Pagans’ debut album, The Seed, The Vessel, The Roots and All, when it’s released on 19th March. (KC)

Grandmas House – ‘Always Happy’
A thumping post-punk anthem that seethes with sardonic wit, ‘Always Happy’ is the latest single from Bristol-based trio Grandmas House. Released via Brace Yourself Records, the track is a raucous juxtaposition of the confident image we project externally to others, when internally we often feel the complete opposite. (KC)

Pretty Happy – ‘Salami’
A wise-cracking anthem about the complexities of processed meat, ‘Salami’ is the new single from Cork art-punk trio Pretty Happy. Full of sarcastic lyrics, gutsy vocals and crashing percussion, the track is a ridiculously good off-kilter banger that rambles through the band’s many absurd thoughts and feelings about the pork-based snack. (KC)

Hadda Be – ‘Another Life’
Complete with a refreshed line-up and new name, Hadda Be (formerly Foundlings) bring their shimmering joy to latest single ‘Another Life’. Despite the track’s somewhat melancholic sentiment – “it covers me in worry, now that’s all I ever know” – it’s buoyed by an infectious jangling energy as scuzzy hooks whirr alongside frenetic beats and Amber’s rich vocals. An uplifting slice of indie-fuzz-pop that’ll leave you longing to dance along to its sparkling sounds live. (ML)

Lauren Auder – ‘Heathen’
“I think this may be my favourite song I’ve ever worked on,” explains London-based songwriter Lauren Auder about this track, and I can see why. ‘Heathen’ is actually my first introduction to her sound, but what an intro it is! It mixes everything I love about electronic music – yearning vocals, urgent beats, rapturous synths and guitar noises – it’s all here and it gives me goose bumps every time I listen. Definitely check out Auder’s new EP, 5 Songs For The Dysphoric, if you’re into this. (KC)

Tyler Holmes – ‘Nothing’
I’ve only recently become acquainted with Tyler Holmes, but I have fast fallen in love with their poignant, affecting and utterly unique sweeping electronic soundscapes. Holmes has spent a lifetime crafting their own Black, Queer narrative by pushing the limits of their imagination and their innovative ability to fuse together genres to create truly stirring, instantly immersive sonic trips is showcased perfectly on ‘Nothing’. Holmes is set to release their new album next month via Ratskin Records. Watch the video for ‘Nothing’ here. (ML)

SPIDER – ‘Water Sign’
Born in Nigeria but raised in Dublin, London-based twenty-one year old SPIDER blends jagged electronics and brooding guitar riffs alongside her distinctive vocals to create her evocative sounds. Her focus is on how a track makes you feel – whether that’s a feeling of power, fluidity or chaos – and on ‘Water Sign’ she weaves these emotions into a cohesive, stirring electronic soundscape. (KC)

Roma – ‘Stay Like This’ (Tiiva Remix)
I’ve been following queer artist & producer Tiiva since I heard their re-working of Despicable Zee’s ‘We Won’t Stop’ last year, and I’m continuously impressed by their instinct for choosing talented and interesting artists to collaborate with. Tiiva reached out to songwriter Roma during lockdown after hearing her track ‘Stay Like This’ and the pair have worked together to create this lush, dreamy electronic tune. Roma originally wrote this song from the perspective of her daughter, exploring what it means to grow up in a modern world and Tiiva overcame their own adult cynicism to create this woozy new remix. (KC)

Show Boy – ‘Turn It On’
Following 2019’s Surreal, London artist and producer Show Boy has today released his much awaited brand new EP Ishtar Lion. A wonderfully eclectic collection, the EP showcases Show Boy’s knack for blurring genre boundaries, combining influences from across the musical spectrum to create perfectly catchy offerings oozing an uplifting, vibrant energy and heartfelt emotion. Driven by the soaring power of his unique vocals, ‘Turn It On’ interweaves an intricate musicality with a sparkling soulful splendour, resulting in a euphoric ode to new beginnings. (ML)

Callaz – ‘Queima Essa Ideia’
Recorded in Berlin and produced by the brilliant Ah! Kosmos, the title of this latest single from songwriter Callaz translates roughly as ‘Burn That Idea’. Based between Lisbon and Berlin, Callaz has recently released her second album, the brilliantly titled Dead Flowers & Cat Piss, and it’s full of her soft vocals, candid lyrics and alt-pop soundscapes. (KC)

Grove – ‘Ur Boyfriend’s Wack’
Bristol-based hyperpop artist Grove blends chaotic synths, warped beats and wicked rap verses on this high octane track ‘Ur Boyfriend’s Wack’. Taken from their debut EP, QUEER + BLACK, this song forms part of Grove’s aural journey through their experiences of being young, black and queer. (KC)

Ci Majr – ‘Summer Drug’
Ci Majr is an emerging non-binary artist from Atlanta and this new single ‘Summer Drug’ is a flirty, joyful dose of dancing beats and smooth vocals. Of the track, Ci explains: “I think a lot of us have been in a place where we’ve been hurt from a relationship and have a hard time opening up again…so this song is saying ‘yes, you can absolutely satisfy my physical needs but we’re not taking it further than that’; likening ‘using’ someone for their body just like you’d use a drug of some sort.” (KC)

Desire – ‘Zeros’
The latest single from Desire, ‘Zeros’ will capture the ears with its sweeping celestial aura. As a majestic, electro-driven soundscape provides the backdrop for Megan Louise’s honey-sweet soaring vocals, glitchy beats and twinkling hooks create a truly moreish offering, oozing an ethereal, effervescent grace. Of the track, Desire explain: “As the calendar pages fly by, we are all reaching for a new normal on what sometimes feels like an endless loop. The cyclical music echoes flashback sequences of a recurring dream.” (ML)

Blonde Maze – ‘Fade Into You’
An exquisite rendition of a Mazzy Star classic, Blonde Maze’s ‘Fade Into You’ oozes all the poignant, rich emotion of the original, whilst adding her own unique blend of soaring electronics and uplifting chiming beats to create something truly euphoric steeped in its own ethereal splendour. Another blissfully cathartic creation from Blonde Maze, showcasing her ability to take an already beautiful track and transform it into something that is completely, undeniably, and majestically, her own. (ML)

Kalbells ft. Miss Eaves – ‘Pickles’
A dreamy tune about escaping a romantic pickle, ‘Pickles’ is a delightful new offering from cosmic-pop collective Kalbells, featuring rapper Miss Eaves. Kalbell’s will be releasing their new album Max Heart on 26th March, which they describe as a “portrait of badass women harnessing their improvisational magic.” (KC)

pecq – ‘Stranger’
‘Stranger’ is the debut single from Oxford psych-pop duo pecq, aka Nikò O’Brien and Hannah Jacobs. It’s a delicate, lush soundscape which the pair wrote, produced and self-released through their own label, Upcycled Sounds Records, earlier this year. pecq are set to release their debut EP, also called Stranger, this summer. (KC)

Jenny Moore’s Mystic Business – ‘Woman Is A Word’
A cover of Empress Of’s ‘Woman Is A Word’, this latest offering from the six-piece choral punk ensemble highlights the power of voices coming together in unity. Oozing a sweeping, celestial splendour, the many vocals flow together in harmony, propelled by an upbeat, jazz-infused musicality. Adding their own unique euphoric energy to the poignant sentiment and soulful passion of the original, Jenny Moore’s Mystic Business have created an emotive and empowering rendition. (ML)

BAXTR – ‘Grace On Fire’
The latest single from London-based trio BAXTR, ‘Grace On Fire’ reflects on the feelings of helplessness that come with seeing someone you love suffer. A sweeping, uplifting slice of alt-pop it oozes nostalgic tinges harking back to the anthemic indie classics of the early noughties, whilst maintaining its own unique shimmering power. As Floss’ honey-sweet vocals flow with a celestial majesty throughout, the track builds with explosive, soaring riffs and a swirling heartfelt emotion to create something truly stirring. (ML)

Samantha Crain – ‘Bloomsday’
Taken from her upcoming new EP, I Guess We Live Here Now, Samantha Crain’s latest single ‘Bloomsday’ is a poignant slice of Americana combining beautifully strummed melodies and a stirring warmth. As the impassioned subtle power of Crain’s rich vocals ooze shades of the raw emotion of Sharon Van Etten, twinkling hooks flow with a rustic charm to gently grace the heartstrings. I Guess We Live Here Now, the upcoming new EP from Samantha Crain, is out 9th April via Real Kind Records/Communion Records. Watch the video for ‘Bloomsday’ here. (ML)

Ex:Re – ‘Where the Time Went’ (with 12 Ensemble)
This song stopped me in my tracks when I first heard it. The title, Elena Tonra’s vocals and lyrics, composer Josephine Stephenson’s cinematic string arrangements – they all resonate so much deeper during this extended period of lockdown. ‘Where The Time’ went is one of ten beautiful tracks on Tonra’s new collaborative album, Ex:Re with 12 Ensemble, and it’s accompanied by a wonderful music video that she directed too. Watch it here. (KC)

Hannah Peel – ‘Ecovocative’
I’m very late to the Hannah Peel party, but I’m in love with her ambient electronic soundscapes. This single ‘Ecovocative’ is lifted from her upcoming album Fir Wave, which is set for release on 26th March via Peel’s own label My Own Pleasure. (KC)

 

LISTEN: Show Boy – ‘Turn It On’

Following the release of his debut Surreal EP last year, which received acclaim from the likes of Tom Robinson and BBC Introducing, and with a reputation across London for his dazzling live shows (with support slots for bands such as HMLTD and Black Midi), artist and producer Show Boy has now shared the first single from his upcoming new EP.

Inspired by the spark of excitement that comes with meeting a new friend or starting a new relationship, ‘Turn It On’ is propelled by a jangly groove and vibrant sunny energy. With shimmering keys and Jovis’ distinctive impassioned vocals, this latest offering showcases his knack for creating perfectly catchy slices of colourful pop that’ll uplift and inspire. Interweaving an intricate musicality with a sparkling soulful splendour and euphoric drive, ‘Turn It On’ offers another truly unique soundscape from this innovative artist; blurring genre boundaries, and highlighting Show Boy as a definite one to watch.

 

‘Turn It On’ is out now, listen on Spotify. And keep your eyes peeled for Show Boy’s upcoming EP, Ishtar Lion.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

PLAYLIST: June 2019

Whether you’re loving this “heatwave” or loathing the humidity; we’ve got some fresh new music on our June playlist to quench your listening thirst. Take some time to scroll through our words and make sure you hit play on the Spotify link at the bottom of the page…

Friedberg – ‘Go Wild’
Indie-pop quartet Friedberg have been on my radar since I played their desert-rock debut ‘BOOM’ earlier this year and I am just as into their latest offering. Scritchy synths and some classic reverb all mixed into ‘Go Wild’, which is out now via LGM Records. (Tash Walker)

The Paranoyds – ‘Girlfriend Degree’
I’m loving the slacker-grunge sound of ‘Girlfriend Degree’ from LA newcomers The Paranoyds. Speaking about the track, the band explain: “[it’s] a call to arms, a reminder to be a supremely self-loving woman, to just do you. It’s cool to be a girlfriend or wife or whatever, but there’s so much more to being a woman than that.” Couldn’t agree more girls! The band’s debut album Carnage Bargain is set for release on 13th September via Suicide Squeeze. Check out the accompanying video too. (Kate Crudgington)

Sleater Kinney – ‘Hurry On Home’
We cannot wait to see legends Sleater Kinney in February!! And this incredible latest single from the Olympia band fills us with excitement for their upcoming album The Center Won’t Hold, out in August. (Mari Lane)

Witching Waves – ‘Best Of Me’
The latest single from trio Witching Waves, ‘Best Of Me’ races with a jangly twang and punk-fuelled energy. Alongside fast-paced hooks and raw, impassioned vocals, I just can’t get enough of its visceral power. Witching Waves’ latest album Persistence is out now via Specialist Subject Records, and we cannot wait for them to headline for us at The Finsbury on 12th July, along with Milk Crimes, Finish Flag and Hubert’s Friend. (ML)

Scrounge – ‘Purpose’
Q. Will there ever be a day when us GIHEs girls don’t rave about the brilliance of South London duo Scrounge?
A. NO.
Their latest track ‘Purpose’ is equally as formidable as their previous singles and we urge you to see them live if you can. (KC)

ARXX – ‘Iron Lung’
Q. Will there ever be a day when us GIHEs girls don’t rave about the brilliance of Brighton duo ARXX?
A. NO.
We had such a laugh with Clara & Hannah on our radio show last week (listen back here) and they treated us to an exclusive acoustic version of ‘Iron Lung’, but we love it in it’s full fury too. (KC)

Nova Twins – ‘Devil’s Face’ 
Georgia & Amy never fail to fill my ears with cathartic, addictive, abrasive sounds and this latest single is no different. Their distorted bass lines and furious vocals make my heart swell, and I can’t wait to catch the duo live again at The Sebright Arms in September (get your ticket here). (KC)

Gaffa Tape Sandy – ‘So Dry’
Bury St. Edmunds band Gaffa Tape Sandy have now shared a new single taken from their upcoming EP Family Mammal. Propelled by an angst-driven scuzzy energy, ‘So Dry’ blasts out jangly melodies alongside luscious harmonies, creating a massively infectious summer delight, with a fierce, gritty edge. Of the track, the band explain: “We don’t really like arguing as a whole, but expressing yourself is very important, so we like to think of this song as us raising our voices anonymously at the people who make us mad as hell”.
Family Mammal is out 9th August via Alcopop! Records. (ML)

Show Boy – ‘Like That’
Following his last infectious offering ‘Video’, Show Boy’s latest single blends hyper-real production elements with introspective songwriting. An impassioned UK Garage-tinged pop anthem, ‘Like That’ perfectly juxtaposes catchy summer beats with heartfelt reflective lyricism, that will stick in your ears on first listen. Of the track, Show Boy explains: “It’s about the confusion and panic felt when you realise you have more affinity with a past snapshot of yourself than the person you currently are”.
Surreal
, Show Boy’s upcoming EP, is set for release next month. (ML)

Haiku Salut – ‘Going Back’
Haiku Salut are an instrumental trio from the Derbyshire Dales, consisting of multi-instrumentalists Gemma Barkerwood, Sophie Barkerwood and Louise Croft. Between them, they play accordion; piano, glockenspiel, trumpet, guitar, ukulele, drums, and melodica. Their music is a truly delightful, immersive experience and their dreamy electronic soundscapes continue to distract me from whatever I’m doing. ‘Going Back’ is one of the double A-side singles taken from their forthcoming album The General due out on Secret Name 2nd August. (TW)

Sui Zhen – ‘Perfect Place’
Taken from her upcoming album Losing, Linda, ‘Perfect Place’ is the latest single from Melbourne-based artist Sui Zhen. Inspired by how we exist in the digital age, the track flows with glitchy, playful beats and twinkling, ‘80s-inspired hooks alongside Zhen’s quirky, honey-sweet vocals. An instantly infectious slice of sparkling alt-pop. Losing, Linda is out 27th September via Cascine. (ML)

Joviale – ‘Ride Away’
Influenced by the likes of Billie Holoday and Nina Simon, Joviale’s music inspires a dynamic mix of pleasure and pain. This is her second single, taken from her upcoming EP Crisis which is set for release on 6th of September via Blue Flowers. (KC)

Rachel Chinouriri – ‘Mama’s Boy’
Full of neo soul and heavy on the bass… this song just feels full of summer. (TW)

Jeannel – ‘Everything’s The Same’
Berlin based Jeannel has the most gentle haunting vocals filled with so much emotion. (TW)

Track Of The Day: Show Boy – ‘Like That’

Trying to reinvent a genre that is already so diverse can be difficult, and yet with new single ‘Like That’, London-based alt-pop artist Show Boy seems to do just that.

Taken from his upcoming debut EP Surreal, ‘Like That’ starts off simple; a gentle kick and snare behind a light-hearted guitar riff, before a short and poppy synth joins the mix. From the get-go, the beat is catchy, oozing perfect summer vibes. Of the track, Show Boy explains:

It’s about the confusion and panic felt when you realise you have more affinity with a past snapshot of yourself than the person you currently are.”

This juxtaposition of ‘Like That’s uptempo music, with the deeper, more meaningful, lyrics is something extraordinary and wonderful; marking the track out as a poignant, impassioned pop anthem. 

Show Boy, aka Jovis Lane, adds something to his music that we haven’t seen before – a unique and exciting prospect in the industry as a whole. 

 

Surreal, the upcoming EP from Show Boy, is set for release next month. Catch Show Boy live at the EP launch on 11th July at Dalston Superstore.

Bekky Smart
@bekkymays