What? The Middle
What they say? ‘The Middle’ is a direct inspiration from 80’s New Wave that I grew up on. I was listening to a lot of Bananarama and Thompson Twins making this track. The song is a simple ‘break-free’ type song about leaving a hometown situation. The song is sprinkled with events and places that transpired when I was 18, all based around my home with my brother and father.
Why we love it? Instantly enamoring with a tropical electro 80’s inspired beat, this charming pop track is a total vibe. The production is impeccable, the vocal is sublime and the melody is so memorable, you’ll be singing it for days. A fantastic offering from Petticoat. (Lloyd Best)
FFO: The 1975, No Rome
Why we love it? Trippy, PC music inspired production dripping with soft and tender vocals that dive deep into the feeling of being medicated with all of the lows and highs that come along with it. This slow sojourn through the track is tinged with sadness and longing but glazed with beauty. (Lloyd Best)
FFO: SOPHIE, FKA Twigs
Who? HMS Morris
What? Myfyrwyr Rhyngwladol
What they say? HMS Morris HQ is nestled on the edge of one of the most multicultural streets in Cardiff, City Road. It’s a noisy, colourful cosmopolitan crush of restaurants, shisha bars and barbers, which have recently been invaded by posh student accommodation projects. But while this may have been the initial impetus behind ‘Myfyrwyr Rhyngwladol’, by the time it had solidified into a definite sound and feel it was no longer a rant about fancy student halls.
Rather it had become an assertion that the world be a better place if we were all International Students. In the context of this summer’s global race-relations reckoning, there is a general moral imperative for us all to become students of the international: to watch the news as if it’s our own story, to actually take it in, to learn and adapt our behaviour. We should be prepared to immerse ourselves in other cultures, just like the international students of City Rd do.
Why we love it? One of the most unique and interesting sounds coming out of Wales right now and iconic champions of Welsh language music. This indie-rock synth-pop mash-up is a fantastic amalgamation of cultures, sounds, and a gorgeous showcase of HMS Morris’ personality, brand, and artistic ability. (Lloyd Best)
FFO: Ani Glass, Fischerspooner, Courtney Barnett
Who? Bright Light Bright Light / Brendan Maclean
Where? New York
Why we love it? Upbeat and sensual disco vibes with two phenomenal voices that melt together into heavenly waves of sonic ecstasy. The chorus is catchy and will stay with you for eons, the production is clean and impactful and a flavourful taste of Bright Light Bright Light’s phenomenal new album Fun City. (Lloyd Best)
FFO: Sam Sparro, Jake Shears, Little Boots
What? Schism Trek
What they say? Schism Trek explores feelings of acceptance and strength while navigating uncharted waters. At the time my bandmates and I were all touring in different projects and yearning for time with each other and our loved ones! But ultimately we all came out stronger as individuals and as a unit. It speaks to how unfair it is to be loving someone from a distance, and the grounding power of focusing inward and trying to let go of control during lonely, tumultuous times. Relax your jaw and love yourself, your time with friends will come soon!”
Why we love it? Playful, squelchy and gleeful. This psych smeared slice of dream pop, clambers up melodic lines and speeds down rhythmic slides. A ode to friendship at a time of disconnection this wurlizter of ex Cherry Glazerr bassist Livvy Bennet’s evocative almost childlike vocals, guitar hooks and fantastic keys it sounds like they are having so much fun and so are we! (Bill Cummings)
FFO: The Orielles, Cherry Glazerr, White Denim
Who? King Hannah
What? Crème Brûlée
What they say? “We couldn’t be more excited to share with you our first ever music video, for our debut single, Crème Brûlée!!! We shot and edited it ourselves across Liverpool and North Wales (spot the Welsh flag!) with the aim to create a homemade, documentary-style piece inspired by the indie films we love. We really hope you enjoy watching it as much as we enjoyed making it!”
Why we love it? King Hannah are led by the creative duo of Hannah Merrick and Craig Whittle and have recently signed to City Slang, this debut offering hangs heavy with a mysterious, seductive and aching charm of a Lynch soundtrack. Enveloping with Merrick’s haunting lovelorn tone, pitter patter drums and swelling to a fantastic crescendo of swelling guitar licks. Spellbinding. (Bill Cummings)
FFO: Mazzy Star, Slowdive
Who? Saya Gray
What? ZUCCHINI DREAMS (AUBERGINE MEMORIES)
What they say?Saya Gray is a Toronto-based multi-instrumentalist who has been playing music since age two. She has previously lent her talent to sessions and tours for artists throughout the world.
Why we love it? Like a fever dream in three movements that reflects cycling moods, skirting the lines between rnb and altpop, Gray’s exquisite vocals possess addictive multi dimensions. Shifting from strident “f#ck you” verses underpinned by shuddering bass, to liquid guitars and trippy atmosphere. Gray marks herself out as a new startling talent. (Bill Cummings)
FFO: Erykah Badu, Joanna Newsom