Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Daughter - Doing The Right Thing (Video)

Daughter has always been a band that has dealt in the fragility of the human condition, but on first casual listen you could easily be forgiven for thinking that their atmospherically textured new single Doing The Right Thing has found the band riding into a new world of sexual freedom as words about making babies and nudity jump out at the ears. However, it soon becomes clear as the tune evolves that Doing The Right Thing is dealing with far sadder issues than getting  jiggy with it. “Then I lose my children, then I lose my love, then I sit in silence, let the pictures from soak out of televisions” sings Elena with a stately calmness; for Doing The Right Thing is about dementia and its progressive and devastating attack on the brain: “I’m just fearing one day soon I’ll lose my mind.”  

Dementia probably isn’t the sort of thing you’ll find most young musicians writing about, but then Daughter aren't the same as most young bands – they have a disarming maturity about them and that makes them all the more special.

Taken from forthcoming 10 track album Not To Disappear, released early next year, Doing The Right Thing is partnered by the first of a trilogy of videos created by Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard. It’s a poignant and sympathetic film that serves as a strong visual accompaniment to the music, showing the emotional complexities of treating someone with the illness with dignity and respect, even though its hard to see if anyone is still there inside. Supremely powerful.

Daughter - Doing The Right Thing (Video)

Monday, 28 September 2015

Kassassin Street - Yeah It's On

Here at Breaking More Waves we like Kassassin Street and their mind altering blend of indie rock so much that we’ve recently moved house to be closer to the very road they were named after. OK, maybe it wasn’t our only reason for moving, but whatever the reasons, it has led to a slight slow-down in the output of the blog over the last few months, although as you might have noticed this week has found us getting back into top gear again.

Likewise Kassassin Street have shifted their profile up a lot this year, with well received festival sets, their own headline tour and the forthcoming Radio Silence EP, due mid-October. Now with their foot on the pedal marked onwards and upwards we get Yeah It’s On, a swirling shamanic hallucinogenic piece of indie rock that’s as opium loose in its groove as it is sphincter taught in its riffs. Does that sound a bit pretentious? Probably, but once you’ve heard it you’ll know exactly what we mean.

Kassassin Street - Yeah It's On

Starling - Wild Heart

After the haunting piano led beauty of Take It Down (what a song) and Misfit, Starling returns with Wild Heart and destroys all of our preconceived ideas about her being just a slightly left of centre balladeer that probably composes all of her songs by candlelight.

“Take what you need, I'm just an animal, I'm not responsible,” she sings. Woah. We wonder what sort of animal? A lion? A tiger? Maybe a hamster? Oh hold on, isn't she a bird judging by her name?

There’s some spike and force here; crashing drums, throbbing electronics and line about a thorn in her love. Don’t worry, it’s not as if she’s gone industrial or written a heavy metal track, as Wild Heart is still unquestionably listenable, but a fire has been added to the intriguing mix.

Starling - Wild Heart

Sunday, 27 September 2015

Billie Marten - Bird

We’re not sure if Billie Marten is getting bored of all the ‘new Laura Marling’ tags yet (we are, but as a new artist these comparisons are almost inevitable), but her forthcoming As Long As EP will probably find the likening switching to Lucy Rose. Marten has the same sort of unshowy voice as Rose, never pushing things to hard, relying instead on a genteel sereneness to draw you into her world.

New song Bird, the first of the four songs to be released from the EP, is a timely reminder that there will always be a space for something a little softer and slower in amongst the dense, fast-paced harshness of the modern world. This one is beautifully produced, the song growing with a haunting clarity, but despite the atmospheric build, it's many miles from being anything near bombastic or over the top. Wonderfully enticing.

Billie Marten - Bird

Saturday, 26 September 2015

Halsey - New Americana (Video)

We’ve been  enjoying the rise of US based pop starlet Halsey, particularly in our own country of the UK where she seems to have taken the likes of Radio 1 as well as many of the bigger websites by surprise when her debut album went Top 10. Of course some of us can smugly sit on the sidelines, shaking our heads in a knowing and condescending manner shouting ‘TOLD YOU SO’. After all it was back in February 2014 that we first posted about her and suggested that she was a pop star in the making.

The question is why did the likes of Radio 1, the nations foremost pop station, miss her? They're certainly having to play catch up now (they've recently put Hurricane, another track from 2014 on their In New Music We Trust playlist) We don’t know for sure but one idea we have is that rather like Oh Wonder, another internet success story of the last year or so, Halsey didn’t have a PR machine behind her when she started and therefore got ignored. The first emails we received about her music were from Ashley (who is Halsey) herself rather than any team behind her,

One of those emails was about this song – New Americana – which Halsey gave away as a free download back in 2014. Now it’s back with an edgy new video, which includes a man going for a wee, possibly the first time we’ve ever seen a man going for a wee in a pop video? But if you know any others please feel free to take the piss out of our lack of urinal pop music knowledge.

Halsey - New Americana (Video)

MΛJIK - Save Me

Oh gosh. This is absolutely beautiful.  

You might remember London duo MΛJIK from February when we featured their debut song It’s Alright. Now they return with Save Me, a tune which upon pressing play we absolutely knew that we’d be posting on Breaking More Waves within the first 30 seconds of listening.

Released through Akira Records on 23rd October Save Me does something to our insides that’s impossible to explain without sounding incredible cheesy. From the opening line of “I’m hearing voices all because of you, I’m seeing red, so in love with you,” sung with the creamiest and most velvety of vocals that never seem to exert themselves and yet manage to fully pull at all the emotions, you’re drawn into a downtempo world where all of your troubles just disappear. This is the power of music. This is the power of MΛJIK. Marcus & Jamie play live this week at Gold Dust, Hoxton Bar & Kitchen (Sept 29th). If you get the chance go and immerse yourselves in their wonder.

We repeat. This is absolutely beautiful.

MΛJIK - Save Me

Friday, 25 September 2015

Hazel English - Fix

Right now Hazel English is a bit like the Jeremy Corbyn of the blogs. When we first heard her music we liked it a lot, but we really couldn’t see it appealing beyond the fringes – it sounded too old fashioned and certainly wasn’t in keeping with what the  vast majority of uber-cool new music sites were getting excited about. 

But just like Corbyn, English has jetted rapidly from being a 100/1 outsider to a leader of the pack. Never Going Home and It’s Not Real have already been big online hits and now third song Fix is on its way to doing something similar. Upon its release a couple of days you could almost hear the tap-tap melee of bloggers keyboards, rattling away, getting the song on line as quick as possible. 

So why is this? 

We hope (and think) that the main reason is simple; good songs.

Fix continues the good song trend. It’s a little subtler than her previous efforts, a melancholy anthem for every teenager sat in their bedroom, bored, dreaming of excitement with a call of wanting to feel alive and to ‘take me away again’. It’s also deliriously pretty. 

Oh and just like Corbyn it appears that Hazel English is also a big fan of rocking up to work in a pair of shorts (see above pic). We salute the both of them for this.

Hazel English - Fix

Thursday, 24 September 2015

So Below - Sleep

How much impact has Lorde had on the championing of music from New Zealand? Certainly since her global success there seems to be more eyes and ears focusing on that part of the planet and maybe, just maybe, So Below will be the next artist to benefit from that exposure. Debut song Drift was an impressive start and has already amassed 35k+ plays on Soundcloud and now she (for we’re still assuming it’s just a she and not a band) returns with the song Sleep. With its insomniac hookline of “I can’t fall asleep,” the song carries the mysterious vocalists melody by way of a rubbery, lolloping groove and some serious piano chords buried deep into the track. After a few listens we’re convinced it’s as impressive as Drift - take a listen er..... below.

So what do we know of So Below so far? Not a lot, although there’s a new picture (we feel a bit like we're presenting Crimewatch here, but if you recognise this woman get in touch), an instagram account with just 14 followers at the time of writing, and there are hints of some connections on Twitter. Aaron Short of The Naked & Famous tweeted that he was involved with So Below, and as his solo project is called Space Above. Could the ‘above’ and ‘below’ point at clues or is that just us desperately trying to make something out of nothing? Take a listen to this Space Above track (here) – a cover of a Naked & Famous tune - that vocal sounds pretty familiar don’t you think? 

Edit 25/09/2015 The mystery is no longer a mystery. Shortly after this post we received contact from one Maddie North, a New Zealander based in Los Angeles who recognised the picture above; because it's her. Maddie tells us that after relocating from Auckland in 2012 she began exploring her talents by exploring heavily processed vocals and harmonies over simple yet dark laptop beats and this formed the basis of So Below. As already suggested she also features as a member of Space Above, but the above and below name link was purely an accident! Maddie has now begun the process of transforming her So Below project to something ready for the stage as well as readying her debut EP.

So Below - Sleep

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

I Am Karate - Elevate (Video)

Soldh Ahlström and Marta Pettersson aka I Am Karate, our favourite Swedish martial arts namechecking electrop duo (ok, we admit, the only Swedish martial arts namechecking electrop duo we know of, but that still makes them our favourite, even if it’s in a list of one) return today with a video for new track Elevate. Rather like yesterday and the video from Låpsley it’s partly another ‘going for a walk in the woods’ film, which makes us wonder if going for a walk in the woods is going to be the next big thing in pop music?

However this walk in the forest is a little darker and creepy with references to mythology. There’s masks, dark cloaks, fireworks and a man with a giant birds head; maybe giant birds heads are also going to become a thing in pop music, after all, we’ve already had giant budgie heads (here).

Of course odd visuals are one thing, but what we also need is a tune. Thankfully we have one. Elevate (the song) is a rather romantic, accessible and sumptuous piece of electronic pop, some miles away from the oddness of the video. 

I Am Karate - Elevate (Video)

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Låpsley - Hurt Me (Video)

With the UK summer festival season now over (there’s a blog post to be written about how the concept of ‘summer festival season’ is a contributory factor to the death of indoor music venues – but we’ll leave that to another day), we’re reminded of the final day of our final festival (Bestival). There on a lazy come down Sunday,Breaking More Waves favourite Låpsley provided goosebumps and chills in places we didn’t even know it was possible to get them, with a beautifully discreet but emotional set, that if our life of festivals was a film would have found  the credits rolling immediately after. It isn’t of course – and so we stayed for the likes of The Jacksons and Clarence Clarity into the evening, but that day it was this song, Hurt Me, that got us inside. 

Now there’s an official video for you to enjoy, which is one of those ‘artist goes for a walk’ type ones. So if you woke up this morning and thought to yourself "what I really want to see today is singer and electronic musician Låpsley going for a walk," then you're in luck. If you didn't, then you should still listen to this wonderful tune, even if you've heard it a few times already.

Låpsley - Hurt Me (Video)

Monday, 21 September 2015

Flawes - New Waves

Time for a new band; after all it’s been a while. In fact you’ll have to go back to the 13th August to find the last time we introduced a totally new act here on Breaking More Waves. So now we’re making amends and starting with a brand new London based trio called Flawes. Here’s the low down:

1. Flawes debut track Don’t Wait For Me is rather excellent. It has an acoustic bluesy feel to it in places, but there’s also some dreamy electronic production giving it a crisper modern ambient feel. There’s probably some sort of genre name for this sound, but you can probably come up with something better than blu-folk-tronica which is all we’ve managed.

2. They’re supporting Ella Eyre on her UK tour. Now whilst Ella is very talented, having recently seen her live we’ve come to the conclusion that she needs to grab a few more ideas. There’s only so many times you can stomach THAT Rudimental beat and some ‘woah-oh-ohs’ vocals. Now we realise that this paragraph isn’t really about Flawes and more about Ella, but the point is, if you are going to see Ella, get there early. Or even better, if you’re in London, sell your Ella ticket, buy a ticket for Flawes debut show in Hoxton on 19th October and use the spare money you’ll then have for a couple of beers.

3. The promo pic above goes for the ‘we’re serious about our music’ impression doesn’t it? No lounging around in a bath half naked with silly smiles on their faces here. No it’s all blurry images and earnest stares. Mind you the song seems to be about splitting up with a girlfriend, so it’s probably not befitting to have a big cheesy thumbs up style photo. 

4. Apparently there’s lots more to come from this lot, so we recommend staying alert.

5. Flawes are Josh Carruthers on vocals and keys, Freddie Edwards on guitar and another Josh, Josh Hussey on drums.

6. Don't Wait For Me is taken from Flawes debut EP Unspkn due 23rd October.

Flawes - Don't Wait For Me

Sunday, 20 September 2015

Black Honey - Corrine

Black Honey know how to write a great tune don’t they? There’s a real scuzzy basement pop sound to their new song Corrine. With a chorus of “Corrine come back to me, ‘ cos it’s 6 in the morning and we’re always playing make believe,” gleefully leaping out with a huge ball grabbing melody and torch song emotion it thrusts twangy guitars and a hint of the 1960’s vintage into your ears with vigour, and then some.

Is anyone still doing the guitar music is dead argument? Well if they are here's the last nail in that particular coffin. How can it be dead when you’ve got bands as viscerally thrilling as Black Honey making music seem so alive? It’s why, when Breaking More Waves was asked to personally select a number of bands and musicians for the bill of this year’s Dials Festival in Southsea, Black Honey was top of our list. Come and see them rock the socks off Portsmouth’s latest new music event as the headline the Edge of the Wedge stage on October 3rd alongside the likes of Hooton Tennis Club, Fickle Friends, Kagoule, Alice Jemima and Chloe Black. Tickets are available on this link here.

Black Honey - Corrine

Thursday, 17 September 2015

Pumarosa - Priestess

Back in February we introduced a band called Puma Rosa (formerly known as Ada) to readers of Breaking More Waves. They had impressed us with a couple of demos they had on Soundcloud – the ethereal and lolloping Red and atmospheric indie of Dragonfly. At the time there seemed to be very little buzz about them.

Since then it seems that things have developed quite nicely for the band, both creatively and in terms of ‘the biz’. First there’s been a minor name change – Pumarosa is now all one word rather than two and secondly they have a new song called Priestess which is being released by markers of quality, Chess Club, in the UK. It's a bit of a stonker.

The first time we heard Priestess we were immediately transported back to the ‘Madchester’ scene of the late 80’s and early 90’s.Not because the song sounds particularly like anything out of that era – if anything there’s a slightly gothic undertone to the track, but in the way that it develops that same sense of hypnosis by a throbbing groove that bands like the Happy Mondays and The Stone Roses owned. It’s the musical equivalent of wonderfully dark layered narcotic hedonism and yes, it is bloody marvellous. If anything its seven minutes simply isn’t enough. 

Pumarosa - Priestess

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Elle King - Ex's & Oh's

You know how Breaking More Waves is on a bit of a slow down at the moment? And you know how this means that sometimes we’re posting the latest music a little bit later than all the other blogs, if at all? Well we’re going one worse now and posting a song by an artist that was uploaded to Soundcloud nearly a year ago. Even by our standards this is pretty slow. Even less good for our new music blogger credentials is the fact that the song has had over 1 million plays. This means if you’re any better than us (which right now isn’t hard) you’ll have probably already have heard Ex's & Oh's, but if you are one of the (approximately) 6.9 billion people in the world that isn’t familiar with it, this post is for you…. 

Of course, there’s also a chance that Elle King herself may be new to you. Thankfully at least in this respect we can have some claim to blogger one-upmanship having first written about her way back in 2012 when we talked of her ‘songs about heartbreak, love and crap towns in Ohio’ and her ‘gorgeously affecting’ voice in one post and described her as a ‘whiskey soaked Adele going country’ in another. Although we haven't featured her since.

So why feature this song Ex’s and Oh’s now? 


1. It’s only been relatively recently released in the UK and therefore as a UK based blog it’s still ‘new music’ to us. Sort of. 

2. Elle is touring the UK with James Bay later this month and into October. Now normally we wouldn’t recommend buying a James Bay ticket at all, but in this case we're making an exception, because then you can watch Elle and then when she’s finished enjoy propping up the bar without any worries about it being too crowded, letting everyone else sing along to all those ‘classics’ like Hold Back The River. Even better you could just find another pub down the road and have a pleasant evening getting drunk knowing that you have finer taste than the majority.

3. A good song is a good song no matter what, and Ex’s and Oh’s is a good song. In fact it’s so good that it’s already reached number 1 on Billboards Alternative Songs chart (although to be honest it doesn’t sound very alternative at all). Staggeringly Elle is only the second female solo act to top the chart since 1996. Something seems a little wrong there.

4. We don't really have to justify posting anything at any time. Even though we just have. 

Enjoy Ex’s and Oh’s and brace yourselves because we’re getting very very close to the point where we get back to doing new music like we used to*. Thanks for sticking with us.

Elle King - Ex's & Oh's

* Next week

Monday, 14 September 2015

Embrz - Lights ft pennybirdrabbit

Whilst we were away at Bestival (Mini Review: Whilst the festival itself has grown bigger over the last 10 or so years, it has lost little of its brightly coloured soul or crazy charm. The thing that has changed is its audience, which has become far younger and far more mainstream – the abundance of Adidas and Ellesse fashion present spoke volumes) Kildare based producer Jack Casey, better known as Embrz dropped a brand new tune, his first since single Silent. Featuring the voice of LA singer pennybirdrabbit, Lights slow drips beautiful electronic warmth. It’s a piece of music that will make you want to be with someone you love at night, hug them closely and start the come down together, forever. 

Embrz - Lights featuring pennybirdrabbit

Tuesday, 8 September 2015

The Japanese House - Clean

Back in June we announced that for a short while Breaking More Waves would be scaling things back a little and posting less often. That period is coming closer to the end (although we’re not there yet), but before we get there we’re sneaking in this quick post of the new track from The Japanese House who returns with her first new material since the debut EP Pools To Bathe In earlier this year.

Whilst it’s easy to be cynical about The Japanese House what with the patronage and premieres from Zane Lowe (first at Radio 1 then subsequently at Beats) and the association with label mates The 1975 (ensuring exposure to their enormous fan base), what we’re finding fascinating about her music so far is that it’s hardly the sort of obvious pop music that screams ‘HIT SINGLE’. In fact, new song Clean is downright odd – a weird mix of warm mellow electronic studio trickery, vocal effects and a soft-focus marshmallow like slow motion groove. There’s no way that this will get a sniff near the top 40. This is a good thing, because if the persuaders of the music industry think that what the public needs is a new dose of weird druggy sounding electronic pop then we’re all for jumping on board.

Even better, in October Amber Bain (who is The Japanese House) is taking her songs out live on the road. We have no idea how that’s going to work with her sound, but rather like jumping from a trapeze without a safety net, that’s surely far more exciting than going to a gig knowing exactly what you’re going to get? 

The Japanese House - Clean

Thursday, 3 September 2015

Frances - Let It Out

One of the problems of being a music junkie on the internet, but also having a very busy life outside of music, is that here at Breaking More Waves we simply don’t possess enough time to write about everything that we love (ok, we could sleep less, but trust us we survive on very little sleep anyway). The result is a blog that sometimes very much falls into type and doesn’t necessarily show the broader range of taste that we have. This week for example we’ve been listening to lots of Aphex Twin, Nils Frahm, Frazey Ford, Chemical Brothers and Hooton Tennis Club but you won’t find much mention of any of them on this blog (until perhaps some of them in our album's of the year posts in December)

Today we absolutely fall into the safety net. Frances has already been featured before on Breaking More Waves and new song Let It Out is exactly the sort of thing you’d probably expect to find here. It's a divinely pretty piano ballad that sounds a bit like Rae Morris and a bit like Oh Wonder, two blog regulars. With its oh-oh-oh lighters in the air chants and tears in my eyes emotion it also hints at some sort of Coldplay-esque stadium aspirations, that is if the stadium was actually a rather pleasant café, church or seated velvet lined  club, which to be honest is where you're more likely to find us than the soul-sucking hollow emptiness of an arena / enormodome. Let It Out is taken from the new EP from Frances which is due on Communion Records on October 16th.

Frances - Let It Out

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Oh Wonder - Heart Hope

Let’s take a look at some of the comments on Oh Wonder’s Soundcloud for Heart Hope, their latest and last song that they have uploaded to the world wide web for their one year project to write, record and release one song every month:

“For fucksake. How is everything you guys make perfect?”

“Prettiest song yet, no question.”

“Best song, to end the best year of my life. Thank you Oh Wonder.”

“Can your music be any more perfect. Damn, you guys are so good!”

“This makes me want to cry, and then make pancakes.”

And that’s just the start of them.

When Ant and Jospehine started this project they surely could have had no idea of how people in different parts of the world, via the power of the internet, would fall for their music and find their homespun tunes so touching and so easy to relate to. But they have. And now this Friday there’s an album. It will be an odd one, because if you’ve been following Oh Wonder, you’ll already know exactly what to expect. 

Next are the gigs. Of course Ant and Josephine have played live many times before, but never together, and never with this huge surge of love from people who have embraced their songs. The shows are going to be incredibly exciting for everyone involved. We’re expecting a few tears to be shed  at their first gig - well, from this blogger anyway - on the  16th September at London’s ICA , which is completely sold out. 

If you haven't ordered the album yet, treat yourself and click here, but before that, if you haven't heard it yet, listen to Heart Hope, a wonderfully positive hug of a song. Sometimes, when the world's a bit shitty, when everything's getting on top of you, when everyone around you seems to be doing things bigger, better and more successful than you, it's important to have someone tell you that they love you. That's what we get from this song. Let it kiss your ears.

Oh Wonder - Heart Hope