Soul-saturated pop singer hailing from Colombia, whose rich, silken vocals we can’t get enough of this week. I discovered her very recently, through her featuring on the new Gorillaz album in both ‘Ticker Tape’ and ‘She’s My Collar’, and her vocals in the latter are so outstanding that you’d be crazy not to go listen to her solo work afterwards. She released her debut album ‘Por Vida’ a couple of years ago, and its leisurely, classy sounds really fill a gap in the market next to Solange and NAO, but with luxurious jazz vocals like no other. An outstanding artist to get very excited about.
Mysterious, R&B-soul group whose music holds a rare intimacy that is truly special to listen to. I was lucky enough to catch them at Live at Leeds at the weekend, and the atmosphere and their entire set was the smoothest I saw all day. Their songs ‘Five Minutes’, ‘Swim’ and ‘Quite Like’ are ones you’ll fall in love with instantly, and once you’ve given them a listen it won’t be long before you’ll be listening to their slower, softer sounds in ‘Union’ and ‘Blossom Roses’. A beautiful young band who know the exact sound and image they want to present.
Mali-based band who make some of the most vibrant music around. I’ve been listening to them for a couple of years now, since the release of their debut album ‘Music In Exile’ in 2015, but they recently dropped a brand new single and its brilliance reminded me of what a talent they are. ‘Bamako’ is a lively blitz of a song, impossible not to dance around to – and exactly what we’ve come to expect from them, after their superb debut. Songhoy Blues are definitely the ones to kick-start your summer soundtrack.
Raw, mellow sounds from this Brooklyn-based musician. I have recently discovered him through the release of his single ‘Green Twins’ – a relaxed, ambient tune, with drums to remind you of Groove Armada’s ‘At the River’ – and of course had to listen to more. He’s not released an album as of yet, but has a select few singles out there for you to listen to and enjoy. Particular good ‘uns include ‘Bet She Looks Like You’, with Black Keys-like vocals and a lounging beat, the bluesy ‘I Don’t Know’ and similarly jazzy ‘Cold’. A brilliant artist who we wish we’d found earlier!
Fresh female musician, whose quirky, weird but contagious style is starting to create bigger and bigger waves in the indie world. I first heard her with her song ‘Grip’, released at the end of last year, but she actually began releasing music two years ago now. ‘Fall In’, the title track from her debut EP, is a sombre, dreamy piece, pretty slow and understated in comparison to her following releases ‘Baboo’ and ‘Grip’- both a lot more sparky and textured. But where her true talent really begins to shine through is in her latest track, ‘I Bow Down’: glamorous and strong, it’s an instant indie-pop banger, and one that you won’t be able to stop listening to. Pixx seems to be getting better and better with each new single, and we’re very excited to see where she goes.
London artist whose chill, stripped-back songs carry an air of both nostalgia and warmth, which turn out to be quite a stunning combination. He’s been releasing music for 3 years, but I only heard him last year with single ‘Halfway to Nowhere’, which captured my attention immediately and should yours, too. Particularly if you enjoy Talos or FAVELA.
Australian indie-rock trio who have recently been enjoying success with their single ‘Ubu’. Catchy and contagiously feel-good with a tonne of cool dreamy vibes, it’s easy to see why it’d be an instant hit with almost any listener; an instant mood-lifter and perfect sing-a-long. The song comes as the first of a bunch of new releases following their debut album ‘Oh Inhuman Spectacle’ from last year, and has just been followed by ‘L’Heure des Sorcieres’ – less light-hearted and more of a moodier, mystical listen, but serves to show the range of sound they can pull off. We’re waiting in anticipation for what they come out with next!
Female duo who just started releasing music last year, with a moody, indie sound that is deeply understated yet addictive. They broke onto the music scene with debut EP Soothe / Dadum, both songs on which are equally dark, suave and mysterious. So far this year, they’ve released ‘Transition’, with some of the best guitar riffs you’ll here and a effortlessly intense build. A true gem.
After seeing these guys live last week, I can honestly say I can’t recommend their music enough.
A local Leeds band, they mainly play small gigs in intimate venues – I caught them at the Brudenell. I’d listened to them online before, but it really doesn’t do them the same justice as it did hearing them live: the entire soundscape they use and the atmosphere they created was stunning. They have a good selection of songs released so far on Spotify – my personal favourite being ‘Once’ – but if you’re in the area, you really need to catch them at their next gig.
Here’s their latest release:
With the fresh release of this alt-electro genius’ second album, ‘Process’, it was hard to choose anything other than him for Band of the Week. Soft, sumptuous and artful, the soundscape of this album is everything you want it to be from Sampha. Whether it be through the stripped-back, emotive ‘(No One Knows Me) Like the Piano’ or the textured synths and beats of ‘Reverse Faults’, ‘Under’ and ‘Plastic 100°C’, this gorgeous soundscape is ever-present, and turns ‘Process’ into a staple album of 2017 and Sampha into an even more incredible artist.