Red Telephone - Gumshoe - Jessie Munro - Ghost Caravan - Piney Gir - MAWD

Red Telephone - Victoria Park.

Background - There is a timeless quality an other-worldly melancholic sadness that hangs on every passing note from Cardiff's most exciting psychedelic night urchins Red Telephone latest single 'Victoria Park'. It could be a long lost song from the 1966 'Blow-Up' soundtrack, The Yardbirds covering Syd Barrett in the minor key! 

Yet 'Victoria Park' is very much about today, the sound of a band transcending their influences to create a confident and thrilling world within their songwriting. As the bands singer Declan Andrews explains of the recording process. "we wanted to create a striking and recognisable landscape of sounds without overwhelming the core song. It could have easily ended up full of baroque-sounding parts but in the end we found ourselves taking parts away and opening up space"
The song itself "was written around loose recollections of Victoria Park in Cardiff, where I used to go every now and again as a child. I didn’t set out to write about that place but the core song and lyrics came out quickly. It’s mainly just a rumination over the passing of time condensed into a song and Victoria Park just happens to be the place used as a springboard to explore those ideas. It’s probably because 

Victoria Park has quite recognisable monuments such as the pool and bandstand which are easy to recall, even if they were peripheral to my experiences there when I was younger. There’s something romantic about parks anyway and there seems to be a strong relationship between parks and time too, especially with the memorandum benches and how a lot of them don’t change all that much compared to the people who visit them."  TWITTER.

'Victoria Park' is a cascading psychedelic song that is immersed in sixties cultural musical charm and yet some how it manages to be both fresh and relevant today. Having fond childhood memories of summer holidays in the latter half of the sixties, this track could have easily been on Radio Caroline or Big L in those British golden offshore radio days. That bands like Red Telephone are putting their own stamp and interpretations out there, leaves me very content and pleased. 


Gumshoe - Barking At Shadows.

Background - Gumshoe debut first single "Barking at Shadows" off their upcoming album "The Governor's Brother" due out November 16th . The music of Athens GA's Gumshoe is an ever-changing structure built on the foundation of frontman Andy Dixon's "weirdo-as-Everyman lyrics" (Flagpole Magazine). Formed in 2011, the band its debut album The Bad Route Down in 2014, and was nominated for an Athens Music Award in the Americana category the following year. 

With the addition of free jazz drummer John Norris in late 2014, Gumshoe took on a sharper edge, pumping out "lean, darkly evocative rock songs with vivid imagery" (Flagpole). Bassist Jef Whatley came on board in 2017, rounding out the current trio formation.

Dixon honed his writing with short fiction and long poetry, along with a half decade as a sports journalist at newspapers from south Georgia to Philadelphia. He stumbled into music by making several albums of sound collage and experimental electronic under the name monkE. At age 28, he picked up a friend's guitar and began to put words and music together.

Informed by his compulsive reading of crime noir novels, his extended stays in Zen monasteries, and a habit of hiking in the Georgia woods that dates back to his days as an Eagle Scout, Dixon's lyrics cover a "schizophrenic landscape so full of split personality that Tom Waits seems reasonable in comparison" (Flagpole). Topics range from questioning one's own sanity amid dizzying celestial math, to tragic, drugged-up rural misadventures and a woman whose dreams are not-unpleasantly frequented by the ghost of the scoundrel Richard Nixon. FACEBOOK.

Laid back and cool 'Barking At Shadows' is a bluesy alt rocker, with plenty of Americana overtones. it's slick, relaxed and the lyrics are intriguing and delivered just as these genre styles should be.


Jessie Munro - I'd Like To.

Background - Twenty-three year-old Toronto born, Los Angeles based artist Jessie Munro has been mesmerizing audiences worldwide, with her stunning soulful vocals and sleek, modern-electro R&B/pop. Finding her start in classical music and musical theatre, Munro went on to attend the prestigious Berklee College of Music, propelling her songwriting abilities and giving her the musical maturity which is evident throughout her music. The soulful songstress is now preparing to release her Debut EP On My Own, a six-track release which tackles the stages of post break-up.

On My Own tells the story of living through bleak heartbreak, with relatable honest lyricism and beautifully poetic melodies, it’s an EP of reflection and contemplation. Narrating the feeling of being alone, the pain of unrequited love and finding courage and confidence to move on, the release is an authentic story of a lost love. Influenced by artists such as Carole King, Daniel Caesar and Charlotte Day Wilson, Munro describes “we were trying to harness old school classic sounds and marry them with modern sounds”.

Leading single 'Under Fire’ features a strong, melodic bassline which rides fluidly atop the driving drums and Munro’s soulful, dreamlike vocals. Thematically, the song focuses on the pressures of social expectations and constantly feeling scrutinized by others. Munro reflects on how she felt she was “under fire” from everyone in her life and the song is the realization that other peoples opinions aren’t always definitive. Inspired by Lianne La Havas and her technique of fusing lyrics with melody, Munro explains “the intent of the lyric is brought to life with a melody that evokes that same emotion” and this is clearly apparent throughout the single.

‘If Your Eyes Could Talk’ showcases ethereal soundscapes and minimalistic melodies, which still pack an impact through Munro’s smokey vocals, delivering a song of quiet intensity. Featuring notes of jazz and pop all underpinned by a soul underscore, the track is brought to life with it’s refreshingly vibrant chorus. The single succeeds in sonically portraying the emotions of a relationship and is a truthful depiction of a breakup, which establishes Munro's signature sound and sets the tone for the rest of the EP.

Munro has come a long way from coming in sixth place in CBC’s search for Dorothy in its 2012 Over the Rainbow series, produced by Andrew Lloyd Webber. Having already performed to sold out audiences across the globe, as well as receiving critical acclaim, the singer is now ready for the next chapter of her musical endeavour, with On My Own currently available worldwide. TWITTER.

The third of six tracks on the new E.P. 'On My Own' is the addictive 'I'd Like To'. Jessie Munro's is described as having "soulful vocals with sleek, modern-electro R&B and pop/rock instrumentation." That in fairness is both concise and accurate, and the E.P. really does explore differing musical directions in a cohesive and often catchy manner, so expect a whole lot more than just the featured piece.


Ghost Caravan  - Damn You.

Background from Ghost Caravan - Ghost Caravan is a group of collaborators lead by myself, Shaina Silver-Baird. My music is about dark places, but I focus on finding the light, the moment when you realize your own strength and ability to move forward. 

I want to be proud to share my songs with young women. There are so many voices in the world telling women how to think and feel about themselves. I want to be the voice that celebrates women. I want empower and uplift people.

On my forthcoming record T.O. Confidential, I collaborated with members of the Weeknd, Grand Analog, Hill Kourkoutis of the Launch, Martha and the Muffins, the Four On The Floor String Quartet and many others.

There were so many amazing artists who collaborated on this project. It felt like a whole village came together to make this record and I’m so grateful to that community. I love creating music with other people. The end result is so much better because of the many points of view, different opinions and experiences that are woven into each song. FACEBOOK.

'Damn You' is a song brimming with character and a whole load of melodic hooks. Shaina Silver-Bairdare vocals are a delight as they engage and draw you into the atmosphere and feeling of the song. Upbeat, a little funky and overflowing with charm, it comes with a very fine video to round matters off.


Piney Gir - Dreamcatcher.

Background - Piney Gir follows up her recent single “The Great Pretend” with another dose of bittersweet pop delight in “Dreamcatcher”. Written at a difficult time, it was inspired by the wilderness and freedom, using driving desert rock to celebrate dreams and warn of dangers ahead. The song is about taking risks and living life on the edge. Swirling psychedelic synths are punctuated by twanging guitar, riff-led basslines and punchy saxophones featuring dreamy vocals spinning to infinity. The track features members of Gaz Coombes’ band, with whom Piney has been touring over the past year, as well as Tom Greenhalf (Man Without Country) and Sweet Baboo on saxophone.

Piney explains more about the track: “I wrote Dreamcatcher when I was in a dark place, it seemed like absolutely everything had gone wrong, love, work, health, family “best friends” not being good friends, just general hard knocks and feeling pretty isolated while facing some pretty big life stuff. Outwardly I was projecting the usual cheery Piney because that’s what everyone expects from me, but I was the lowest of the low; the lowest I’ve ever been, pretending to be happy was making that isolation even worse. The only way I know how to cope with that emotion is to channel it into something creative and my default setting is hopeful, I am always looking for the silver lining no mater how dark the clouds are.  Music is a healthy outlet for me. I feel the most myself when I’m doing music stuff.  When I said this album was about mental health, it really was. Without wanting to sound dramatic, I think making this album saved me from utter breakdown. Music is my mental health stabiliser, I feel very lucky to have it as an outlet.”

London-based Piney Gir originally hails from Kansas and has for many years been a prolific and prodigious musician, spanning various genres from electro to alt-country to folktronic to 60’s retro pop to krautrock. She is currently working on album number seven and her new material lands at art pop with angles and creating a real world of sound with deliberate spaces and spikes. There are still echoes of the signature Piney sound, with strong melodies, tuneful riffs and twisted lyrics that sound sweet at first listen and evolve to some kind of dark twisted storytelling. Piney’s inner Laura Palmer emerges with a tender bitter-sweetness, reminiscent of post punk basement bars and cherry martinis.

Piney heads out on the road in October to play some of her new songs, with shows in Oxford and London. She has a headline, single-release show at Sebright Arms in Hackney as well as a demonstration of her new venture “Drunk Cookery”, a punk zine cookbook of healthy and quick recipes for those late nights when you get home from the pub in desperate need of sustenance, with loads of rock’n’roll references, including using songs instead of timings. WEBSITE.

We featured 'The Great Pretend' back in the middle of June and now we have 'Dreamcatcher'. A rhythmic alt rocker, there is something hypnotic and engrossing about this song, the music and vocals are intertwined, as it quickly develops a level of intrigue, that's hard to let go of. 


MAWD - Wandering Eye.

Background - California’s soulful rock’n’roll artist MAWD has a new release an infectious blend of gritty guitars, soulful vocals and hard hitting melodies. Entitled ‘Wandering Eye’.

MAWD is the moniker of Madeleine Mathews, a California singer songwriter and multi instrumentalist (piano, guitar, ukulele, bass, accordion & banjo), whose influences include, The Head and the Heart, The Staves, First Aid Kit, Nancy Sinatra, Lord Huron, and the Alabama Shakes.  MAWD’s sound gravitates towards an eclectic mix of genres including indie rock, folk, folk rock, retro rock, and blues rock. The soulful, textured timbre of Madeleine's vocals is diverse and ranges anywhere from a breathy sultry folk/blues vibe to a powerful Janis Joplin-esque/Karen-O belt. 

Born and bread in Northern California, Madeleine made her mark in her hometown of Placerville playing original songs at a weekly local open mic. She  found an even larger audience in Chico, CA, where she attended CSU, Chico's music program.  She quickly became a part of the blossoming local Nor Cal scene fronting and writing for various bands and winning local singer/songwriter competitions, resulting in TV and radio appearances and press. Madeleine's stunning live performances and the unique vulnerability, power and shear beauty of her voice caught the attention of Roger Gisborne of Los Angeles based indie label Sound x 3 Records, who immediately signed her and sent her to Scandinavia to tour.  As a result, she was invited to perform for several international festivals, including the Irish, YouBloom Festival.   

Gisborne produced and released MAWD's first EP during Madeleine's last semester of school and brought in Brian Lucey (Arctic Monkeys, Black Keys, Beck, Cage The Elephant, etc.) to master the record, which received critical acclaim from noteworthy tastemakers leading MAWD to SXSW and a southwest tour with a new line-up of top British, Irish and American musicians, known as the "MAWD Squad". TWITTER.

We go back to March of this year for our first taste of MAWD. With our second feature 'Wandering Eye' we have a music video that is full of sixties imagery. Close your eyes and you have a modern soulful and energised mixture of funky blues with hints of modern folk. It's also exceedingly catchy!