ROCH - Mark Corrin - James Parm - Cold Reading - Ruthie - Emily Jean Flack - Sam Valdez

ROCH has released Blackbird a compelling and atmospheric song with her remarkable vocals adding so much more. 'You've Misjudged Your Jacket Again' is one grand song title and Mark Corrin's wry comedic observations remain intriguing to say the least. James Parm has a new album called 'Oh My Darling' (which you can stream in full below), it's a creative and genre spanning affair and a fine listen at that. 'Through the Woods, Pt.1' from Swiss alt rockers Cold Reading mixes melodic hooks with notable rock vocals as the band deliver an uptempo rocker. Ruthie has already gained the attention of BBC radio stations among others and 'Spirit Now Moves' pretty much explains why, this is one excellent song. Emily Jean Flack shares a live in the studio version of 'Throwing Shapes' where some Irish musical influences are present, however her creative and genre crossing delivery makes the song rather special. Finally today we have 'Turn' from Sam Valdez, where the combination of Americana influences and shoegaze are an absolute delight.

ROCH - Blackbird.

ROCH is 24 year old Kate Miller. Based in London, her spiralling pop-leaning creations to date have piqued the interest of many. During a 2 year absence from the limelight, ROCH spent time completing her degree as a sculptor artist - as well as writing the songs that will eventually form her debut album.

Now she releases 'Blackbird' - a taste of what's to come. Lyrically - the track invites the listener to challenge the norm; to not be satisfied with the status quo.

"You are more than the tale you've become / you are more than the robe you wear" ROCH sings in the throbbing, chant-like verse section. "It's something of a one-way conversation with a blackbird, encouraging it to go out and fulfil its potential." she explains.

Built around a repetitive, enchanting guitar loop and procession-like drum patterns - ROCH's vocal delivery verges on the theatrical, perhaps even operatic - to a backdrop of otherworldly electronics and glitching production motifs. Produced with Ben Christophers, known for his work with Bat For Lashes, and more recently Nakhane - 'Blackbird' is just a glimpse of what's to come from ROCH.


Mark Corrin - You've Misjudged Your Jacket Again.

Mark Corrin’s early releases as “Shirokuma” were frequently broadcast on the John Peel Show on BBC Radio 1, and his more recent solo work has featured on BBC Late Junction with Nick Luscombe.

He also presents a weekly music radio show himself on Salford City Radio and has collaborated and performed with several notable artists from all over the world both live and on record.

He has previously also been a member of groups including Una Baines’ (The Fall) band Poppycock, Rose & The Diamond Hand and is currently working with a new group called Elastikbande.

“Pub Bin” a digital only release is described as  a dark comedy concept album set mostly in the venues, shops, offices, pubs and bins of modern Manchester. Blending electro pop and punk with Mark's wry observational humour this is the album to lighten the mood of a distressed nation, and world! 19th April sees the release of a new album from Mark Corrin.


James Parm - Oh My Darling.

James Parm hails from the suburbs of Montreal, CA, and has been active in the local music scene ever since his first band began playing shows across the city when he was a teen, melding his childhood influences of 90’s garage rock with his love of jazz and hip hop.

Years of performing, writing, and challenging himself creatively led him to believe things were on track for a breakthrough in the local scene, but after a devastating breakup with his long-term girlfriend, James decided to sideline his musical ambitions and spent his savings on a 3-month trip across South East Asia. He returned to Montreal renewed, only to realize his job had been swept out from under him and his band had broken up. A lost boy, with no money and frayed connections, Parm felt the weight of reality pressing down on him hard.

Weathering the fall out, James succumbed to the life of a loner, finding work at a bar downtown while living on the outskirts of the city. The music he called to write expressed his distaste for the vapid, materialistic lifestyle he was privy to. “It seemed like everyone around me was hyper focused on satiating their ego desires. They would do drugs, party, drink, fuck, but never feel satisfied,” Parm asserts. “I feel like my music is just a process that allows me to slowly unravel what isn’t truthful about life, so I applied it to processing this feeling of being a cultural outsider.”

The resulting recordings which make up the forthcoming LP, Oh My Darling (due out this Spring), are a clear indication of Parm’s penchant for mixing downer pop rock with jazzy hip hop dynamics. Sure, he is clearly exercising his demons, but the tightly wound tracks also operate as a larger criticism of his generations vapid take on love and the cheapening of sex by a moralless and manufactured culture. And just as his early influences, like Nirvana and the Pixies, served as a pick-me-up for a generation of misfit teens, Parm’s album is a perfect companion for anyone experiencing a sense of disillusionment with their life.


Cold Reading - Through the Woods, Pt.1.

After a one-year break from playing shows, Swiss Alternative Rock band Cold Reading are back with an extended line-up and a new single 'Through the Woods, Pt.1'!  The band, which now operates as a quintet after the addition of guitarist Alain Schurter, has spent the past year intensively working on new material. In October 2018 the band finally hit the studio to record the new songs with producer Jan Kerscher (Mutiny On The Bounty, The Intersphere, EF among others) at Ghost City Recordings in Germany.

The result is a three-part concept album, the parts of which will first be released as digital EPs and then as a full-length album on vinyl. The first EP is called "Part 1: Past Perfect" and will be released on May 24th digitally via Berlin based label Krod Records.

The first single opens with a powerful and intense riff, next to which the following first verse seems almost fragile. With atmospheric synthesizers and subtle guitar lines, Cold Reading draw back to leave room to vocalist Michael Portmann’s lyrics. The almost apprehensive mood evoked here dissolves masterfully into a hopeful, driving chorus. 'Through the Woods, Pt. 1' manages the feat of simultaneously marking the first chapter of something bigger, as well as standing on its own as a song. Singer Michael Portmann describes the lyrical content as follows:

'Through the Woods, Pt.1' addresses the handling of unexpected life changes. After the involuntary exclusion from a familiar environment, the lyrical "I" initially remains disoriented and hopeless. After a gradual recognition of and adaptation to the new reality, a journey of self-discovery through time and space follows. Standstill becomes movement. The listener therefore observes a maturing process of the fictitious protagonist.”


Ruthie - Spirit Now Moves.

After releasing just two tracks - ‘What Kind of Woman’ and ‘Spirit Now Moves’ - the Leeds-based songwriter and musician Ruthie is picking up the attention that her talents deserve. She’s already earned airplay at Radio 1, Beats 1, 6 Music, Amazing Radio, BBC Introducing and Australia’s triple j, together with numerous key playlists at Spotify and Amazon.

Now Ruthie, real name Naomi Baguley, drops her debut video for ‘Spirit Now Moves’. Filmed in East London and directed by Kamil Dymek (co-creator of FACT TV), the video opens in introspective style before the song’s uplifting conclusion is complemented by Ruthie’s infectious love of performing.

“So far Ruthie has been a project based in my flat and studios, writing and recording, so it’s been quite an insular process,” says Naomi. “The ‘Spirit Now Moves’ video is an opportunity for me to explore what Ruthie can be visually and aesthetically, in the real world...and to have a one-woman party wearing suits.”

Both of Ruthie’s singles to date reflect upon the challenges of moving on from heartache as she left Berlin for a new beginning back home in Leeds. Reconnecting with her creative collaborator Ben Lewis, her recent rise shows that the closure of one chapter in her life proved to be the impetus for an exciting new start. Channeling the Laurel Canyon tradition with psyche-rock exploration paired with a pop sentiment, Ruthie’s signature style puts a personal twist on influences such as Joni Mitchell, Angel Olsen and Jenny Lewis.


Emily Jean Flack - Throwing Shapes.

The daughter of Denise Flack, member of the ground-breaking Celtic pop band 'Leahy', Canadian, Emily Jean Flack moved to Ireland to study a masters in Traditional Irish Music at the University of Limerick. Her passion for traditional Irish music has led to her most accomplished work yet, showcasing her gorgeously pure vocals and the Celtic music she has grown up with, whilst injecting inventive electronic textures - a genre-spanning mix which defies expectation and delivers on every level.

Her latest live video for the title track of her recent EP 'Throwing Shapes' showcases Emily at her absolute best, with her stunning band in tow. Flawless vocals over genre defying music, full of emotion with perfectly arranged instrumentation, reminiscent of Bon Iver's epic 2012 live session for iTunes.

The new EP 'Throwing Shapes' produced in Belfast by Pete Wallace and mixed by three-time Grammy Award winning producer/mixer David Bottrill (Tool; Peter Gabriel), Throwing Shapes also featured guest performances by true stars in the firmament of Irish folk music - whistle and flute player Brian Finnegan from the band Flook and guitarist Marty Barry.


Sam Valdez - Turn.

Sam Valdez is a Los Angeles based singer-songwriter, whose music is built upon the fusion of shoegaze and vintage Americana indie folk. Embodying the best of both genres, Valdez has created dreamy, yet haunting atmospheric soundscapes that resonate with her listeners.

Valdez grew up at the edge of the Nevada desert, in Las Vegas and credits the desert as a major influence in her writing and composing. The vastness and solitude of desert life is apparent throughout her writing, with cinematic resonance and euphoric arrangements. 

After performing in numerous bands, she found the essence of her solo sound and decided to run with it, indulging in her own creative process and ultimately developing a sound that is true to her own. As a classically trained violinist, Valdez has a sense of musical maturity within her songs, adding technicalities that bring her to the forefront of her genre.

Leading single ‘Turn’ narrates the feeling of not being respected by others and learning how to start representing yourself and your values. Sometimes it’s best to just leave things behind, rather than trying to band-aid every situation. Featuring resonating guitar, ethereal vocals and glistening shoegaze inflections, ‘Turn’ exudes charm with a hint of grittiness.