Cats of Transnistria are currently working on their second album, and while the work progresses, they’ve shared this tune as a peak at what’s to come. It’s an experiment in minimalist pop, offering little more than a single note and the powerful voice; it doesn’t need much more to carry the song’s natural beauty. As the track unfolds, tiny touches of strings and piano float in and out, creating a beautiful haunted atmosphere that will take you off into the ether. Looks like album number two is going to be pretty remarkable!
You’ve always got to keep an eye on the Finnish label Soliti Music, as they’ve become an increasingly consistent label…I’ve adored the last six releases, to say the least. Today they announce the singing of Verandan, the new project of Ville Hopponen, of Cats on Fire fame. There’s definitely a pop-centric vibe to this, filled in with throbbing bass and a wash of synths that add a darker texture to the track. I’d pick up this song for the delighting chorus with its rising tones and natural hook. Look like Soliti has done it again; expect to find this track on a brand new EP from the band coming your way this Autumn.
With a title like Dull Tracks, you’d be forgiven if your expectations were low for the new album from Love Sports. But, it’s best if you just set aside some time to really listen to the record you’re going to be rewarded. For the opening three tracks, you’ll find that each offers slightly different approached to the band’s style; it moves from modern slacker pop to indie rock to more of a crafted ballad. The great thing about such an approach is that you’re never bored, and you’ll surely find a different track to love with repeated listens. Right now I’m stuck on “The Boy Could Not Dream,” but that changes by the hour. Give it a stream and find out your favorite before the album comes out next week on Soliti.
We’ve featured new music from Delay Trees for a few months now, but its time to fill in all the gaps by allowing you to venture off into blissful listen with a stream of Let Go in its entirety. But, stop now if you don’t love listening to really great pop music. There’s tons of touchstones on the album, from modern expansive pop tropes to the intimacy of joyfully solemn bedroom pop. Through it all, Let Go feels like the great Brit pop record that never got made; it’s the sort that walks the fine line between artistry and accessibility, filled with warm tones and melodies made to feel personal. Look for the new album as it drops this Friday via Soliti Music.
I’ve been reinvigorated by the pop music bug (I owe this to catching the Ocean Party last night), so it’s great that this new Delay Trees tune came into the old inbox. For me, this song is all about execution; you’ve got to take a simple formula and make it meaningful, which the band clearly does. It opens with vocals and a light guitar behind, then there’s a movement of elevation as the drums and keys join in to uplift the song, and listener. The chorus has this brilliant melody that’s intoxicating; it reminds me of early Travis (and that’s a compliment). This tune opens the band’s new album Let Go, which hits worldwide via Soliti on April 23rd.
It’s a shame that great art sometimes stems from personal pain, which seems to be the case with Finland’s Astrid Swan. After a battle with cancer, she got back to work, constructing a brilliant collection of the tunes that make up From the Bed and Beyond. It’s apparent in the lyrics that she’s had to confront and overcome some demons coming with such an ordeal. But, in seeing that, and delving deep into the record, you find that there’s an aura of positivity that arises from overcoming fears. I’m partial to the album’s closing number “Whos the Witch Now,” which seems to encompass the feelings mentioned above. The album will be available worldwide from Soliti Music.
Astrid Swan has one of Finland’s most powerful voices, though a battle with breast cancer in 2014 briefly had the pop songstress stepping back. But, she’s back again, making a powerful statement as she confronts the remaining fears from her experience. Her battle’s personal, but it’s also relatable for any of us who’ve been faced with the concept of death…that’s what makes music so powerful. The song has this huge feel to it, filled with backing chorus and careful orchestration to really bring the notes home to the listener. Her new album From the Bed and Beyond is being released by Soliti on March 3rd.
I’ve talked about Finnish act Love Sport several times before, and we’re back today to bring you this brand new video from the band, featuring a “boy who could not dream.” This track has a hook-laden guitar that rings through your speakers, while you watch the journey of the stuffed pig traipsing through nightlife in Helsinki. I always enjoy the balance between the bands discordant notes and their warm pop underbelly, with a special change in tone around the 2.40 mark. Their debut album Dull Tracks will be released by Soliti Music on April 13th worldwide.
I’ve talked about Finland’s Sonic Visions here before, and we’re fortunate enough to be able to bring you the stream of their Lost in Between EP a week before its release on Soliti Music. The band seems to have found the perfect place where the pop sensibility of early Oasis meets the cascading noise of Jesus and the Mary Chain. It’s not quite shoegaze, yet not quite full Brit pop…it really does live in between the two, which should definitely captivate listeners all across the globe. It’s a short collection that I’m sure is more than worth your listening time, and in fact, it’s actually required (by me). Go ahead, get ready for a great musical treat.
I feel like you deserve this Love Sport track today, that’s if you dig great guitar jams. I can hear the slightest hint of Guided by Voices in some of the vocal notes, though they bring in a bit more angst during the chorus. Still, the emotional bounce in the verses actually has a rather uplifting affect…it hits hard with just enough melody to make the world a brighter place. Indulge yourself in a band that aims to bring you Dull Tracks (they’re anything but) once the new year breaks via Soliti. It’s a steady dosage of feel good throughout, so why wait, indulge yourself now.