Weekly Roundup: Friends Don’t Die, Alexa Van, Kūmorebi & More

FRIENDS DON’T DIE – SLOWDOWN

Blending elements of shoegaze and indie-rock, Friends Don’t Die creates a sound that incorporate both an air of early 2000’s indie whilst also invoking elements of the airy sounds of Slowdive. The brainchild of LA solo artist George Gomez, Friends Don’t Die, definitely captures a unique sound on the new single.

Crunchy guitars, driving bass and his echo soaked vocals, the opening verse of ‘Slowdown’ is simplistic, focused around one chord that shimmers over the strokes-esque tight drum sounds. Bright guitar lines which enter part way through the verse pulls the track towards it’s uplifting chorus. Slightly smudgy and muddy whilst still retaining direction and joy, ‘Slowdown’ shows a lot of promise for the future.

 

Alexa Van – Space

Bringing an air of FKA Twigs, Alexa’s entrancing new single ‘Space’ is as haunting as it is experimental, intriguing and beautiful.

Opening with layers of processed vocals which create the chord structure under her breathy lead, Alexa instantly creates an air of experimentation as the track flow towards it’s explosive chorus. Bursting into life with a deep fuzzy, wobbling bass line, punching electronic drums and subtle airy samples and synth lines, the tracks chorus emphasises the dark atmosphere established during the opening verse under an ear-worm vocal line.

Packed with innovative production and instrumentation, the track continues to ebb and flow through it’s dark, experimental electronic-pop soundscape towards a beautiful, reverby climax. The level of creativity on ‘Space’ is something to be admired and will have you going back for a second listen.

 

Kūmorebi – Trouble on a Saturday Night 

Bursting onto the scene with a song that has all the hallmarks of a classic indie anthem, Indonesian indie-rock four piece Kumorebi have set the bar high with their new single ‘Trouble on a Saturday Night’.  Biting overdriven guitars, trashing live drums and bright synth top-lines come together to capture all the intensity and energy of live performance under lead singer Chaska’s edgy vocal delivery. Comparable immediately to The Strokes and early The Killers, it’s easy to imagine the Indonesian outfit starting a new craze for indie-rock in their home country and beyond. 

 

Emma McGann  – Teary Eyed

Electro-Popper Emma McGann shines on her new single ‘Teary Eyed’. Simplistic yet impactful and devilishly catchy, the single’s simplistic drums, bass and picked guitar verse sets the scene as Emma’s vocal float effortlessly over the instrumentation as the track builds towards it’s strikingly huge chorus.

Bursting in at the 1 minute mark with a giant, distorted bass and wide spanning synths, the ear-worm chorus is truly explosive. Contrasting expertly with the verse to give the track a real UMPH, this track is worth listening to just for the breathtaking nature of the chorus.

 

Miranda Joy – Up In Flames

Singer-songwriter Miranda Joy’s new single ‘Up In Flames’ is honest, heartfelt and catchy, shining a light on the solo artists talent as both a writer and a performer. Akin to the likes of Freya Ridings and Tom Odelle, the mix of piano, airy guitar and Miranda’s unaffected vocal delivery captures a sound which is as commercially appealing as it is effortlessly moving. A track which is full of beautiful moments, ‘Up In Flames’ demonstrates the undeniable ability and future potential that the up and coming singer-songwriter has.

Don Mai – Stay The night

Aussie pop solo artist Don Mai has been establishing himself over the last year with a series of singles which showcase his talent as an honest and impactful songwriter. Now back with the 80’s inspired ‘Stay The Night’, Don has taken his singer-songwriter sound into the realms of synth-pop with great success.

Blending washy synths with quacky bass and punchy 808 drums, Don creates a euphoric, danceable soundscape layered with subtle guitar lines and his ever raw and tight vocals. Impactful, catchy and hugely enjoyable, Don is going from strength to strength with every release.

 

Wicked Garden – Bipolarcoaster

Las Vegas rockers Wicked Garden capture an element of Gun’s & Roses on their new single ‘Bipolarcoaster’. From the eery feedback during the tracks opening to the intense, head banging guitar riffs and punching drums the track packs a punch. Raspy vocals top off the intense, grungy soundscape as the track embodies both a haunting atmosphere as well as a fuzzy drive.

A track which is not only packed with appeal from it’s driving, rock sensibilities, ‘Bipolarcoaster’ also see’s the band tackle the difficult subject of mental health struggles. Demonstrating both a depth in their songwriting as well as an ear for a great rock track, Wicked Garden have a back catalogue packed full of bangers. 

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