Maddee - Leon Rosen - Vinyl Staircase - Tallies - The ROAMies - Moon Panda - Breichiau Hir

Just four weeks on from sharing 'Clouds' Toronto based Maddee returns with 'Dry' another song taken from her forthcoming debut E.P 'Red Mind'. Her soulful vocals are smooth, intimate yet powerful when required and the musical arrangement really is splendid.

Leon Rosen shares his debut single entitled 'Summers Edge' described as an end of summer piece the vocals exude heartfelt emotion and are gorgeously distinct as they hold centre stage on this song.

Dorking (England) quartet Vinyl Staircase have a new video for 'Sidewalk!' a feisty and potent song where the bands influences inspire rather than dominate. I had some friends from Dorking many (OK many many) years ago, so a little added reminiscing for me, but the song is a fine one.

We are back to Toronto again, this time for Tallies and a 360 degree video for 'Midnight'. It's a rich indie pop song and I'm pleased that they referenced The Sundays and Cocteau Twins in their promo, this really does have the strength of both bands combined, a feat and a half in my opinion.

We have a storytelling video by The ROAMies and the melodic and beautiful song 'We Can Work It Out' where the duos duel vocals and harmonies are just fabulous.

Moon Panda have shared a colourful and creative video for 'On The Attack', which works so well with their mixture of psychedelic nuances and high quality dream pop sensibilities.

Over the past year or so we have featured a number of Welsh acts performing in their native language and it's with pleasure to share a couple of new songs from Breichiau Hir namely 'Yn Dawel Bach' and 'Saethu Tri'. It just goes to show, you can enjoy the rock and passion of any good band whatever they are saying and singing.

Maddee - Dry.

The Toronto-based artist, Maddee is now sharing the downtempo R&B of ‘Dry'. Taken from her forthcoming debut six-track EP, ’Red Mind’, which is due for release this coming autumn, the new cut finds the artist exploring silk-smooth brass sections and pinpoint percussion, threading her lucid vocal in between.

‘Dry’ once again finds the 21-year-old artist working with Gray Rowan (Charlotte Day Wilson, The WAYO) on co-production, this time thematically turning her attention to self-worth and the importance of loving oneself. “It’s about trying to escape the feeling of loneliness but realising it’s perhaps better just to face it head-on,” says Maddee. “It’s also about realising my value in a relationship and what I'm ultimately worth and willing to give.”

The new single further examines the overarching subject of the forthcoming ‘Red Mind EP’, wrestling with the ramifications of a negative relationship and the emotions that Maddee felt throughout that period. From love to infatuation and naivety, the complex theme of love and emotion is further accentuated through the accompanying scarlet artwork.

Maddee cut her teeth initially with features on the ‘Colours EP’ from Toronto-based producer, Harrison - from here, she picked up slots opening for the likes of Lil’ Yachty, Willow Smith and Tennyson, alongside which she showcased across festivals including SXSW, NXNE and Field Trip. A pair of debut singles were released in 2017 (produced by Toronto’s Birthday Boy and Shagabond respectively), earning the buzz-building artist tips from tastemaker blogs, Majestic Casual and the attention of Red Bull Sound Select who handpicked her as one their spotlight artists.


Leon Rosen - Summers Edge.

Leon Rosen was born and raised in San Francisco, the son of an abstract painter and a belly dancer. His prodigious talent on the piano was recognized early on and by his teens, Leon was enlisted by Bay Area jazz legends such as Herbie Lewis and Sonny Simmons to back them on keys. He also fell in with the founding members of Burning Man who were pioneering the San Fran art scene in the early 2000’s. They invited Rosen to compose the opera which would be played for the 20,000 in attendance on opening day.

Rosen was always interested in pursuing singer-songwriter music in the pop vein, but made a more practical move to New York to study Jazz. Rosen thrived in the energetic and aggressive atmosphere of NYC, but eventually felt the call to move to Israel. Being both Jewish and Armenian, Rosen felt he was in a unique position to bridge the boundaries of race and religion. “I’ve always hoped to transform the world, so I often find myself taking a childish leap into the impossible,” Rosen notes. “Of course, you get punched in the gut by reality but I will always stay naive and get back up with a feeling of innocence and purity.” While studying Arabic, he became infatuated with Middle Eastern music which led him to Kochi, India, where he studied the musical traditions of the far East.

During this time, he had a prophetic dream that took place at a breakfast diner. Tom Waits sat him down and gave him a talking to about his initial dream of pursuing a career as a singer-songwriter. Waits told him, “Singing wasn’t about hitting the notes...You gotta just lay it in the bucket.” Rosen took this message to heart and returned to San Francisco. He struck up relationships with new collaborators and began exploring a more ‘baroque pop’ sound, combining his love of Jazz with the singer-songwriter pop of the late 70’s. The resulting recordings boasted a sweet, nostalgic vibe with modern beats and arrangements, falling somewhere between Harry Styles and and Tobias Jesso Jr.

Rosen’s debut single “Summers Edge” is now out. The heartfelt track is “...aimed to evoke the end of Summer. It’s a gentle sendoff of sorts, saying goodbye to Summer camp, Summer romance, Summer nostalgia or perhaps returning to a Summer lost - a place where an era ended, at a new time of change.”


Vinyl Staircase - Sidewalk!

Equally inspired by the fuzzy, garage rock vignettes of Ty Segall and the arch new wave of NYC legends Talking Heads, Dorking quartet Vinyl Staircase’s new single ‘Sidewalk!’ is a twisting, attitude-filled statement of intent. Channelled through a filter of resplendent Brit Grit, it’s a live favourite that has been tamed and committed to record.

There’s a taut feeling to the track, a disconcerting rigidity reflected in both the way the wiry guitars interact with locked-in bass and drum groove, and the panicked element to the vocals. Thematically this bears out, as the band elaborate:

"'Sidewalk!' explores the paranoia that can occur while walking around at night listening to music, also referring to larger worldly anxiety. Simultaneously it’s largely a non-sensical and erratic journey, reflecting the instrumental strangeness of the song."

Taking time out of touring to get to work on their latest batch of recordings has given the band a moment to reflect. Self-producing in their own homes in the small town of Dorking, they feel like outsiders with regards to any ‘scenes’. Using this relative solitude to their advantage, they have managed to avoid the tendency to take misdirected over-inspiration from their peers. Instead, the ability to grasp salient cues from other artists and taking them back into their own focused remit allows for the perfect mix between community driven evolution and individualist expression.

This ethos is exemplified in the video for ‘Sidewalk!’, as the band reached out of their bubble to bring the visual element of the track to life: “We wanted to put a big focus on the video for this track, and decided for the first time to collaborate with film makers”. Counter to the night-walk apprehension imbued in the track, the clip sees a figure striding through the streets in daylight, coolly accepting idolisation from an adoring mass, touching on the band’s tongue-in-cheek attitude.


Tallies - Midnight.

Toronto-based indie-pop band Tallies have released the 360° video for “Midnight” ahead of their second European tour, which includes an appearance at Reeperbahn Festival in Germany. “Midnight” is the next single to be taken from the band’s breakthrough self-titled debut album – which is out now via Fear of Missing Out Records.

Hitting a melancholy sweet spot between The Sundays and Cocteau Twins, “Midnight” recaptures the thrill and excitement of those adolescent years when you’re sneaking out tof he house behind your parents' back and falling in love for the first time. Accompanying the track is a 360° performance video capturing the band in full motion, as director Christopher Mills explains.

“Midnight is an experiment in 360 degree double exposure performance based film-making that takes place in an enchanted rehearsal studio, and in a garden awash with moving light. Our perpetually moving camera embraces glitch, static poses during performance but always comes back to Sarah Cogan’s enchanting coaxing of an imaginary hand held viewers eye. Midnight balances glitch with wood, flowers plants and detritus with fluid and consistent camera movement throughout.”

Tallies navigate an unfamiliar world on their confident self-titled debut album, which blends elements of shoegaze, dream pop, and surf rock into a fresh sound that’s all their own. The band was founded by singer and rhythm guitarist Sarah Cogan and lead guitarist Dylan Frankland, a couple who met in a sound engineering class while attending Algonquin College (Ontario, Canada). Tallies’ sound was fully realised with the addition of Frankland’s friend from childhood rock camp, drummer Cian O’Neill, and bassist Stephen Pitman.

Growing up with a music-obsessed father, Dylan Frankland was introduced to greats like The Smiths, The Sundays, Aztec Camera, and Cocteau Twins. He subconsciously carried these influences into Tallies, which is evident in the Johnny Marr stylings of his guitar riffs and the Robin Guthrie-tinged shoegaze textures of his production. The album was co-produced by Frankland and Josh Korody at Toronto’s Candle Recordings, a hot spot where locals like Metz, Dilly Dally, Austra, and Weaves have made indie classics.


The ROAMies - We Can Work It Out.

Sometimes life gives us lemons. And, unfortunately, sometimes it throws those lemons at us really hard, one after another, no rest in between, no warning the next one is coming.

Our instinct is to run...hide...protect ourselves. Forget about making lemonade! And what about those we love, those sharing life with us? They’re right there beside us dodging lemons too. That’s where Love steps up. Love’s instinct is to love them as we love ourselves.

Even to put them above ourselves. If we’re all living to love each other as we love ourselves, to put each other first, those difficulties life throws at us become opportunities to work together, to build our relationships, to make them stronger...together. When the harsh difficulties of life fall on us, and nasty disagreements spring up between us, together, with Love and commitment to each other, We Can Work It Out - The ROAMies.


Moon Panda - On The Attack.

Cross-continental psychedelic dream pop duo Moon Panda announced their debut EP and released a video for their latest single, "On The Attack", earlier today via High Clouds.

While "Attack" details the trials and tribulations of a long-term relationship, the Charlotte Spies-animated video is a technicolor contrast featuring shapeshifting animals. While that might seem visually disconnected from the song, singer/bassist Maddy Myers and Danish guitarist Gustav Moltke contend it couldn't be more relevant to the subject.

"[It's about] going back and forth between self-reliance and feeling like an unattached wild animal, chasing affection and adoration," Myers told High Clouds. "Waiting for a text back, a call, some proof that I’m missed. Hopefully, it outlines that chaos that can happen inside you when you just want that warmth and acceptance."

"Attack" is the latest song off of the duo's upcoming EP, Pastel Pools, which was announced alongside the single last week.


Breichiau Hir - Yn Dawel Bach / Saethu Tri.

To move from the caustic, the abrasive, the aggressive to a pensive sadness that eventually brake’s into a cacophony of blistering chords with such ease is a testament to Breichiau Hir’s growing confidence. The last 12 month of releases has shown a band forever forging their own individual path. ‘Yn Dawel Bach / Saethu Tri’ is their new Double A side single, it’s also the band's most melodic songs to date. These songs combine Breichiau Hir’s love for loud noise and soft sad moments. Emphatic sounds and melancholic atmosphere.  ‘Yn Dawel Bach / Saethu Tri’ belong together, they come from the same emotional and creative place. As Steffan Dafydd the bands lyricist and vocalist explains:

“In Saethu Tri, I outline the dread or regret that can overcome me and how I’m never totally sure how to deal with it. I don’t dramatise it in the song, I kept it matter of factly and tried to convey the numbness and dullness that comes with it. It’s wistful and sombre.”

“Yn Dawel Bach is nearly a response to this dread I talk about in Saethu Tri. It basically points out that these waves of panic can overwhelm you whenever it wishes. It can come crashing at you wherever you are. It doesn’t ask permission, it just arrives, unannounced and uninvited.”

These frail emotional landscapes the songs move through are beautifully conveyed. Calm verses that ease the listener into a false sense of security and control before a wall of sound blissfully brakes into the chorus.

The single will be available on limited edition cassette tape and Breichiau Hir will celebrate the release with a launch night at The Dojo, Kings Road Yard, Cardiff on September 28th.