Yo. We forgot last week. Sorry. Please forgive us. Here’s a great way to start off your Monday with a playlist of last week’s hits. We added a few from some of the records we were jamming like Mope City and Phantom Handshakes…not to mention a hit from the great album ATH Records just dropped from Space Tan! Just a nice easy hour of listening to get you in through the morning Monday blues. So yeah, no need for more…just jam to some hits.
We’re over a year or so into this pandemic, and we’re all tired. For me, the Zoom meetings, the lack of interaction with my students, etc just drains me, so this tune from Verandan (who I adore) is perfectly fitting, both in sonic feel and thematically. To paraphrase Ville Hopponen, the tune’s about putting work behind you at the end of the season and sailing off into the unknown…be it tragedy or adventure…you take it all on openly. Interestingly, the music feels similar, to me. It begins with pushing the musical boat out to see and raising the sail, catching a gust and moving a little quicker. But, the seas are mostly calm here, so you’re carefully cutting through the sea to an unknown destination. This single comes to you courtesy of Soliti!
I’ve been really high upon Verandan since the band first came about, admittedly drawn to them by Ville Hopponen’s connection to indiepop greats Cats on Fire. But, as all great songwriters do, he’s clearly crafting his own path with this new project. Today we bring you news that the band will release a brand new 7″ via Soliti and Cloudberry Records, two labels we love. This tune that accompanies the announcement has the group really settling into their subtle indiepop vibes, its almost like a laid back lounge performance. Where you typically find sharp guitars knifing through, you get a bit more warmth and swirling dream notes, letting the vocals come in with their melodic croon. Plus, the arrangements behind it all build in this texture that allows the song to brim with pop sensibility that goes beyond categorization. The 7″ will be available on February 20th.
It’s been a minute since we’ve heard from Helsinki outfit Veranadan, who dropped an EP in 2017 that I was rather excited about. I’m just as excited about this new work, as it seems to be hitting on some of those trademark pop sounds that blossomed forth from that release. This first listen to new stuff has these shimmering keyboard notes, though there’s this almost jazzy flare to some of the guitar’s lick; the rhythm section surely is owed a debt as its keeps the smoothness just hip enough to hold onto pop tendencies. Ville’s vocals reset easily amidst the track, carrying this lofty sense of longing that has certainly charmed my ears. Word has it that there are more tunes to follow in the year, so keep an eye on the band’s label, Soliti Music.
If you do choose to follow these pages, then you’ve likely seen Verandan pop up rather frequently the last few months. It’s important to note, especially for me, that this is the latest project from Ville Hopponen of Cats on Fire fame (a personal fave). Through six times you’ll find yourself enamored with the casual pop vibes, though be sure to pay close attention to the fragility that seems to lurk on tracks like “Inland Sea.” You’ll also be able to find your own personal escape on “Follow the Money,” or turn up the energy with the indifferently upbeat “A Pleasant View.” The self-titled EP just came out over in Finland via our faves Soliti.
A few months back I brought you insider trading news that Harry Kane’s favorite label Soliti Music would be releasing a new EP from Verandan. Today, there’s a sprawling collage opus to enhance your day, cerebrally. There’s a huge usage of negative space, drawing the emotion from the listener rather than forcing it upon us. I’m perhaps most captivated by the intimacy of the voice, almost like a gentle whisper shared solely for me…reminds me a lot of the sorely missed Gravenhurst. Take a moment of your day to make it better all around; look for the EP on October 9th.
Finnish label Soliti has quite a remarkable stable, and this year they signed what I think is an artists capable of breaking across the globe: Verandan. With one incredible single under their belt, the band bring you this brand new single (released digitally on the 14th) to enjoy. It reminds me of the best of the pop world, combing chamber elements with delicate touches of atmospherics…all the while keeping a nice bit of energy in the track. Just imagine the playful bounce of Belle and Sebastian mingling with the more introspective world of the Clientele. The group even throws in some joyous “ooh oohs” near the end, so be sure to stay ’til then.
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.