No one is having more fun than Charmpit. These boisterous anarcho-cuties have all the tunes and all the choruses, a transatlantic twang, and an as-yet-untitled offering coming in the spring. Their onslaught of exuberant hooks and best-femmes-forever dayglo bonhomie makes them one of the most full-on live acts around. If they can capture a tenth of that on the album it’s gonna blow the roof off. (Colin Bond)
GHUM are from different corners of the world – from Spain and Brazil, to the more local climes of North and East London.
They generate a fearsome, propulsive post punk inspired sound and frames it in a cinematic majesty. Like a laser guided missile, their recent single ‘Get Up’, broods with the melodic intensity of a protest rally. A tangle of twitching drums and simmering baselines that unleashes menacing vocal crescendos like a ticking time-bomb. Fantastic!
The spark of their EP released at the end of last year, The Coldest Fire, was recorded with producer Adam Jaffrey (Palace, Crows, Night Flowers). With a run of incendiary shows and a string of releases such as the urgent ‘Saturn‘ which is crammed with a visceral, artful power and furious hooks, GHUM are a formidable prospect.
I’ve been keeping an ear out for the work of South East London’s KEYAH/BLU for a few years now, her recent third single ’till bliss’ is a delectable easy-going blast of old school hip hop, trip-hop and soul. She deftly melds her influences into one tumbling ball of yarn, threaded with stuttering beats, flourishing samples and a stream of consciousness that’s kissed by the late evening setting sun.
Meditating on coming of age, the battle between light and dark, struggle and moments of joy you want to bottle, an anthem that gives thanks to everyone that helped you along the way. With shades of everyone from Lauryn Hill, Erykah Badu to Little Simz but definitely her own work, the South London artist takes a step up with this new release. It is absolutely beautiful.
KEYAH/BLU’s previous live highlights include Boiler Room alongside Jorja Smith and Little Simz, Annie Mac Presents at Jazz Cafe alongside IAMDDB, The Great Escape for Notion alongside Yves Tumor, a sold out headline show at Four Quarters in Peckham and supporting Tirzah at Scala and Biig Piig at Village Underground. With more music set for release this year and beyond, KEYAH/BLU is one to keep your ears open for.
Sorry are virtually impossible to pigeonhole and therefore stand out on their own as the most innovative and creatively exciting bands around. Asha and Louie have been meticulous in the creation of their debut, 925, which was in the works for most of last year and will be let loose on the world in Spring 2020.
They’ve also announced a tour to coincide with the release for February and March, with their biggest headline gig at Village Underground in London on 7th May.
Sorry recently released a video for ‘Rock’n’Roll Star’ the “B-side” to latest single ‘Right Round the Clock’. They take a possibly deliberate DIY lo-fi angle with what seems like a camera phone following Asha dressed up as Elvis and a peroxide pink bewigged “rock star” home from the pub across ruinous terrain and less than salubrious areas of the capital. The washed up rock star on its estate. There are elements of Zutons saxophone, The King’s vocal tremble and a scatter gun percussion as the tempo peaks and wains.(James Auton)
Porridge Radio recently shared their awesome and brooding brand new single ‘Lilac’, alongside news that they have signed to Secretly Canadian for their full length debut album.
‘Lilac’ is the final in a trio of singles including the playfully ace ‘Give/Take’, that the band released last year, propelling them from a word-of-mouth gem of Brighton’s DIY scene to a wider audience – landing them their first-ever 6 Music playlist spot, a live session on Marc Riley’s show and recent sold-out headline shows.
On enveloping new single ‘Lilac’ they swing between brooding and meditative into a fantastically caustic and epic chorus. ‘I don’t want to get bitter, I want us to get better, I want us to be kinder to ourselves and to each other’ sings Dana Margolin in a mantra to a crushing crescendo as she tries to find hope through depression, these small acts of unity and empathy giving us a voice in the disconnect of our democracy. Cathartic and masterful its part of a writing as therapy she has spent carving out since the formation of the band. Porridge Radio are band who could be transformative. (Bill Cummings)
14 Jan – The Lexington, London
28-29 Feb – By:Larm Festival – Oslo, Norway
13-22 March – SXSW – Austin, Texas
28 March – Ritual Union Festival, Bristol
22-24 May – Sea Change Festival, Totnes
Released on boutique label Slow Dance, Saint Jude’s debut track captures the wistfulness of youth spent at raves and in clubs, spilling out onto London parks at dawn. ‘Deaf Ears Blind Years’, captures a more intimate sound, the switch in style a force of hand. In Jude Woodhead’s formative years as a DJ and club goer he developed tinnitus turning him from the euphoria of bright lights and dance floors and back into the bedroom to work on writing more intimate songs. The first fruit of that period is his self-titled EP released in October under his new moniker. Fusing ambient textures with samples, beats and vocal contributions rather like Four Tet or Caribou. He describes it “as a bit of a breakthrough for me in terms of songwriting – I was writing about real stuff rather than abstract ideas.”
Downtempo, and pouring forth over an ambient backdrops ‘Deaf Ears Blind Years’ is a like hazily sifting through the detritus of city in a hazy in the early hours of the morning, fragments of melody intermingle with spoken word reflection on the things we lose as we grow. There’s a resigned wistful to this genre blurring piece that skirts the lines between the likes of Mount Kimbie and Real Lies it makes us hungry for more. Awesome. (Bill Cummings)