Regular readers of these pages will now be well aware of my regular feature, Monthly Favourites, compiling together all my favourite songs from the past month. The end of the year is coming round quick, with the 10th episode in the series now due. Whatever genre of music you’re into, there should be something for you here!
Review by Jane Howkins
Picture by Yana
Yana – Funeral Of Life
Yana is a musician and singer-songwriter I discovered fairly recently, so I couldn’t help but feature her new song, Funeral Of Life, in pride of place here! It’s a folk track with a traditional sound, featuring a set of strummed acoustic guitars as the main instrumentation, applying a Celtic vibe to the song. Yana’s deep vocals work really well with the haunting feel of the music, adding an atmospheric quality to the piece. This is a great introduction to Yana’s music.
NAYTIIVE – Poison
Next up is a track from groovy alt-pop singer NAYTIIVE, titled Poison. Poison is a catchy tune with a funky vibe – the bassline will make you want to get up and dancing straight away! A selection of well-crafted synths mix together in the background, as NAYTIIVE’s soulfully smooth vocals pull you into his world – the chorus sees his vocals rising up even higher, as the 80s style synths add a certain groove to the piece. It’s great to see a modern artist utilising the best bits of vintage pop in this way!
DAMIEN – Nowhere
Australian artist DAMIEN is doing something really different from the norm with his music, as Nowhere shows. It’s a dark electro-pop song with some industrial rock elements, making for a very unique overall sound! An eerie bassline mixes with some minimalist synths, although there’s a lot more going on here than first appears! DAMIEN’S low vocals suit the style perfectly, adding a sinister atmosphere to the tune. The chorus opens the track up further, adding a catchy beat to proceedings.
Charlotte Grayson – MUG
MUG is a track for all you popheads, although whilst it does have its mainstream pop moments, there are also elements of 70s and 80s pop thrown in there for good measure. Charlotte Grayson’s vocals are fantastic as they work their way through this piece, also featuring a throbbing bassline that helps to make this track sound so infectiously catchy. The synths are immense, bringing a retro feel to the music that is currently unrivalled elsewhere.
Wrené – Starlight (10hz Alpha Waves)
Wrené is another artist we’ve featured before, bringing his experimental stylings to light on his introspective new tune, Starlight (10hz Alpha Waves). It’s an electronic song that features some really unique percussion, melding well with the backing effects. Ethereal vocals drift throughout the piece, creating imaginative soundscapes in your mind. Those who like their electronic music a little different to the norm should get a kick out of this!
Lato – Camouflage
Next we move into the realm of rock and roll with Camouflage, a new release by indie rock band Lato. The track starts out with some epic guitar lines, continuing into the catchy chorus which repeats the title refrain over and over again, working its way into your head instantly. This song oozes cool from the very start, with its bouncy rhythm also designed to get you up and dancing straight away. The production is a little raw, but this only adds to the authentic garage rock stylings Lato include in their music.
baltaj – Tumbi
Tumbi is the perfect song for those of you into your EDM/dance music, created by the fantastic baltaj. The energy is palpable from the very start, opening with a huge array of synths and some female vocals that are belted out throughout the song. The beat properly kicks in later, also featuring an Eastern sounding melody, adding a unique flavour to this amazing tune. The tempo stays raised throughout, making it impossible not to tap your feet along!
Cascade – Another Day
Cascade are an alternative rock band based in London, with Another Day being a banging new tune that shows just why these guys are set for the big time. Cascade’s track is quite interesting as it features elements of indie, modern rock and Britpop, making for one fantastic package overall. The music has a really huge, expansive sound, with loads of little guitar motifs playing in the background, as the vocals croon their way through the song.
Jameson Tabor – TOUCH
TOUCH is a track for those into their mainstream pop music, rivalling everything else that’s in the charts at the moment. Jameson Tabor has created something infectiously catchy here, with the song also having a nice groove to it, due in part to the funky bassline that runs through the piece. The vocals are amazing, especially the higher vocals that appear later on, showing an incredible range. Check this out if you like pop music of all kinds!
Blake Cateris – Days, Weeks, Months & Years
You might be thinking that we’ve neglected the acoustic genres on this list, but that’s where Blake Cateris comes in! Days, Weeks, Months & Years has a lovely folky sound, adding a modern twist to the genre. The acoustic guitar melodies are gorgeous, as Blake’s emotive vocals drift across the music, adding his own unique nature to the piece. The lyrics are really interesting, reminding me a lot of the nu-folk genre that became so popular in the noughties in the UK.
Karen Harding – Drive Away
We last featured Karen Harding in August’s iteration of this list, so it seems fitting to add another new track into October’s version, this time titled Drive Away. It’s a melancholic folk song with a haunting sound, as the guitar strums the beautiful chord sequence that characterises this piece so much. What sounds like either a cello or a double bass plays in the background, adding an eerie edge to the tune. Karen’s vocals are a little echoey, but this effect actually helps to add more of a mystic beauty to the piece.
The Lost Trades – Keep My Feet Dry
The Lost Trades are another band that we’ve featured before – I just can’t seem to get enough of their music! Keep My Feet Dry is another fabulous folk song, also featuring some gorgeous Americana stylings. The guitar melodies are slow, fitting the beat perfectly. The vocals are hauntingly beautiful, especially when the combined vocal harmonies kick in, elevating the music to even greater heights. Folk aficionados should love this.
Perfectparachutepicture – It’s Broken
The final song on our list is from the amazing Perfectparachutepicture. It’s Broken is a heavy rock song, starting off with some immensely groovy riffs, adding a rhythmic quality to the piece. The vocals change pitch every so often, creating a slightly quirky feel within the song, with the chorus adding a melodically catchy sound to the heaviness on offer here. I’ve loved every song I’ve heard by Perfectparachutepicture so far – if you’ve not checked them out yet, then this is the perfect track to introduce yourself!