#FeelGoodFriday: modernlove. – Follow You

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modernlove. are possibly one of the most exciting bands to come out of Ireland in recent years. With vibes similar to that of The 1975, the band have a sound that is both current and exciting, yet the vocals of singer, Barry Lally, are beautifully raspy and wonderfully powerful.

For this Feel-Good Friday, I couldn’t resist sharing their latest single, ‘Follow You’ – it’s upbeat, pure fun and has a massive, pop-fuelled chorus. It builds brilliantly throughout, to a clap-along breakdown before kicking back in to the catchy chorus. It is begging to be sung and danced to live at one of their shows…I just hope the band make their way to Brighton soon so I can catch one of their gigs!

As for the video – it perfectly encapsulates the song too, mirroring the fun nature of the song. It sees the band singing to the song in front of brightly-coloured backgrounds whilst focusing on a leading lady that is enjoying the song in her headphones, with the band performing behind her.

If you haven’t heard of modernlove. yet, you best get familiar with them as this song is surely going to propel them on to big things.

What are your thoughts of this up-and-coming Irish band? Do you have a #FeelGoodFriday track to recommend us? Please leave your thoughts or song suggestions in a comment or via social media.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘Follow You’ can be downloaded from iTunes now – https://music.apple.com/gb/album/follow-you/1605247195?i=1605247951


#Review: Bastille – Give Me The Future

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Bastille are a British, indie-pop band that formed in 2010. The band started out as a solo project by lead vocalist, Dan Smith, but eventually morphed into the band it is today. So far, the band have released 3 incredible studio albums (plus a bunch of massive cover projects too!). Now, 2022 sees the release of their fourth full-length album, Give Me The Future. Here’s what we have to say about it…

bastille-give-me-the-future

From the outset, it’s clear that this is a different sound from the band’s previous works, with opening track and lead single, ‘Distorted Light Beam’; an electronic song with cool vocoder use in the latter half, that builds wonderfully throughout.

From there, the listener is taken on an epic journey through a much more electronic soundscape than some of their previous releases but with a much darker lyrical twist. The beats are heavy and laden with many synthesiser elements and the focus is very much on a future that’s full of uncertainty and at times, almost apocalyptic.

That said, it’s counteracted by the upbeat rhythms and dance-inspired music throughout. From the catchy single, ‘Thelma + Louise’ which oozes typical Bastille goodness to the more morbid look at the future of ‘Plug In…’ that looks at the future fate of the world and singer Dan Smith, begging to know everything will be alright; this is an album that deserves to be listened to in its entirety.

This is an album that deserves to be listened to in its entirety.

Executive produced by OneRepublic‘s, Ryan Tedder, it’s easy to see how this album is so catchy and intricate, however there are some parts where I feel it is lacking slightly. The interludes, whilst cinematic in their sound, feel somewhat unnecessary (although can imagine would be amazing to break up a live set!). Don’t get me wrong, they’re definitely worth a listen, particularly ‘Promises’ which is a spoken word poem by actor and rapper Riz Ahmed, who speaks of a less apocalyptic future but instead of one that adores a world filled with love and intimacy. However, in my opinion, whilst they add a nice break in pace of the album, I could take or leave them when relistening to it. Additionally, without these, there are only 10 tracks to the record, so my biggest wish is that there was more to it…but I guess it’s a good thing to leave the listener wanting more?!

Some of the best songs on the album, include: ‘Back To The Future’ (my personal favourite) – an epic disco-esque song with funky guitar and bass lines and movie references throughout; ‘Shut Off The Lights’ with its rhythmic vocal melodies and brilliant gang vocals, making it really stand out and album closer, ‘Future Holds‘ (featuring BIM). The close to the album is fitting both in terms of lyrical content but also its incredible use of gospel backing harmonies and broken-up beat, making it a great end to a great record.

The dystopian themes and darker lyrical content are really prevolent on tracks like ‘No Bad Days’ which features echoing vocals across its many different parts (including a wonderful piano interlude and autotune vocals at the end), ‘Stay Awake? that contains the rather captivating line “stop the world, I want to get off” and the Phil Collins-like beat of the apocalyptic sounding, ‘Give Me The Future’. They are all tracks that weave their way into your subconscious and leave the listener with a lot of food for thought.

In contrast to all the future imagery though, is the rather quirky track, ‘Club 57’ that recalls back at the 70s/80s New York nightclub scene, underpinned by whistling melodies and a seriously electronically distorted soundscape, where even the acoustic guitar is distorted.

Overall, this is a very cinematic-sounding album yet incredibly electronic and there’s so much to love about it. Whilst there’s some darkness to the lyrics, in places, there is a still a degree of optimism too and a massive dose of fun to be had whilst listening to it. The production and arrangements are beautifully crafted and the album truly showcases the band’s ability to grow and evolve, in order to remain current, while still maintaining that distinctive Bastille sound. I can’t wait to see what direction the band take next!

Rating
4.5


‘Give Me The Future’ is out now and can be downloaded from iTunes – https://music.apple.com/gb/album/give-me-the-future/1580064966


Give Me The Future on Spotify

Shut Off The Lights (Official Video)

No Bad Days (Official Video)

Distorted Light Beam (Official Lyric Video)


We hope you’ve enjoyed our review! What do you think of the band’s fourth album? Are you as much of a fan as us? What would you rate it out of 5? Please leave your thoughts in a comment or via our social media.


Enjoyed this? Check out some of our other reviews here:

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Matt – Muzik Speaks
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#Review: Years & Years – Night Call 🧜🏻‍♂️

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Years & Years is the now solo project from singer and songwriter, Olly Alexander. It originally started out as a band back in 2010, who found great success with two remarkable pop albums before Alexander decided to continue the project as a solo venture in 2021. Now, 2022 sees the release of Years & Years‘ third album (and first as a solo project), Night Call. Here’s what we have to say about it…

Years & Years - Night Call

The album launches perfectly with the funky-bass driven, ‘Consequences’ that aptly repeats the track title with a quirky robotic vocal. It’s an upbeat track which opens the album up in the way it means to go on.

From start to finish, Night Call is an album packed with massive, electro-pop tracks that has a wonderful diversity to its sound. From massive pop singles, like ‘Starstruck’ and the club anthem, ‘Sweet Talker’, with Galantis, to more ethereal and oddly satisfying tracks like ‘Strange And Unusual’, there’s a bit of something for everyone.

There are a couple of pretty sexy tracks on the record, including ‘Intimacy’ which is sexy in both lyrical content and the beat too and ‘Muscle’ with its rumbling bass notes underpinned by a shuffling drum beat. Both songs are growers and could be overlooked but on second and third listens, have a lot to offer to the diversity of the record.

This is undoubtedly a major pop record through and through… this is the new Years & Years.

Title track, ‘Night Call’ is a fun, upbeat song with a cool, telephone dial tone used throughout whilst hit single, ‘Crave’, sees club beats meeting drawn-out and altogether hypnotic vocals.

Some of the best tracks on the album include, ’20 Minutes’ with its falsetto, dreamy vocals atop a modest beat (probably my favourite track on the record), ‘Make It Out Alive’ which has catchy chorus vocals on top of shimmering synths and ‘Immaculate’ a superb, Arabian-esque sounding song, complete with funky guitars and a truly danceable chorus. It’s easy to get lost in these tracks, with their wonderful production quirks and interesting styles.

‘Reflection’ is an unusual close to the album, it has an eerie-sounding beat with some funky aspects to it and the vocals sound different than usual too. It’s not a typical Years & Years song and whilst it’s possibly not the best close to the album, it’s still a good song nonetheless.

This is undoubtedly a major pop record through and through and whilst it’s not quite the same style as the old Years & Years records, it’s an amazing first solo effort from the singer/songwriter. It shows just how much he’s developed as an artist and clearly demonstrates that he has what it takes to stay relevant and one of pop’s biggest hitters.

This is the new Years & Years and I can’t wait to hear what he has to release next.

Rating
4.5


‘Night Call’ is out now and can be downloaded from iTunes – https://music.apple.com/gb/album/night-call-deluxe/1586653480


Night Call on Spotify

Sweet Talker (Official Video)

Crave (Official Video)

Starstruck (Official Video)


We hope you’ve enjoyed our review! What do you think of the singer’s latest album? Are you as much of a fan as us? What would you rate it out of 5? Please leave your thoughts in a comment or via our social media.


Enjoyed this? Check out some of our other reviews here:

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Matt – Muzik Speaks
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#FeelGoodFriday: Alphalove – ‘Don’t Wanna Stop’ featuring Conor Maynard

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Alphalove (aka Alex & Chris) are a pair of music producers from the UK, who signed with Insanity Records (Sony UK) in 2020.

The pair teamed up with internet sensation Conor Maynard to create this remake of a Luther Vandross classic, modernising it for the year 2021.

The EDM/dance take on the track brings something completely new to it and features a series of classic EDM traits, from the piano-led lead to the thumping basslines and drum patterns; it’s a song I’ve had on repeat for days and one you can’t get enough of. It’s the perfect end to the week for #FeelGoodFriday!

No official music video exists at present, so for now you’ll just have to enjoy the lyric video below.

What are your thoughts of this dance duo’s remake of a classic? Do you have a #FeelGoodFriday track to recommend us? Please leave your thoughts or song suggestions in a comment or via social media.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘Don’t Wanna Stop’ can be downloaded off iTunes now – https://music.apple.com/gb/album/dont-wanna-stop-feat-conor-maynard-single/1543753386


#FeelGoodFriday: Fickle Friends – ‘IRL’

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Fickle Friends are an indie pop band from Brighton, UK, who formed in 2013. To date, the band have released a string of singles, EPs, their debut album, You Are Someone Else, and now 2021 sees the release of their latest EP, Weird Years (Season 1).

‘IRL’ is one of the songs taken from their latest EP and sees the band return to the sound of their debut album with their brand of catchy indie pop. From shimmering synths and funk-driven bass to the rhythmic guitars and catchy, powerful vocals, this is the perfect Feel-Good Friday track to end the week.

As the vocals aptly state, the track looks at the theme of speaking to someone in real life rather than through electronic communication, as is so often the way these days. Lyrically, it’s a really cleverly written song and manages to remain upbeat and fun throughout.

The music video is really cool too, with its clever cuts between shots and the use of flashing images in the latter half – well worth a watch (below)!

What are your thoughts of this indie-pop band? Do you like their new vibe? Do you have a #FeelGoodFriday track to recommend us? Please leave your thoughts or song suggestions in a comment or via social media.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘IRL’ can be downloaded off iTunes now – https://music.apple.com/gb/album/irl/1525921011?i=1525921019


#FeelGoodFriday: KOOLKID – ‘Feelings’

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Scottish singer-songwriter, KOOLKID, has just released his captivating new single, ‘Feelings’, written by KOOLKID himself, alongside Lewis Gardiner (ex-drummer of Scottish band, Prides).

The single is a soaring, modern pop ballad which flaunts KOOLKID’s emotion-drenched vocals with engrossing, forward-thinking production.

“Falling in love with someone who is already in a relationship is never a good thing. ‘Feelings’ is an upbeat pop anthem that is sure to make you reminisce being in this situation,” says KOOLKID. “You know you have certain feelings, but you only want to feel them with that one person, but you can’t. I feel like we can all relate to being in this situation at one point in our lives. I have and that is why I wrote this song.”

The singer hails from Glasgow in Scotland, where he was surrounded by live music from a young age. Since the age of 15, he has been building his musical identity with constant songwriting efforts, as well as cutting his teeth with live performances up and down the UK.

An accomplished songwriter, KOOLKID has penned tracks for some prominent pop acts, including K-Pop icons BTS. The Scotsman co-wrote ‘Mikrokosmos’ from the group’s chart-topping EP, Map of the Soul: Persona. The relationship between KOOLKID and BTS looks set to continue with future releases in the pipeline!

This latest single sees one of the UK’s most exciting, up-and-coming young artists continue to leave his mark in the contemporary music market.

What are your thoughts of this singer-songwriter? Got a #MellowMonday track to recommend us? Please leave your thoughts or song suggestions in a comment or via social media.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘Feelings’ can be downloaded off iTunes now – https://music.apple.com/gb/album/feelings-single/1493801876


#ThrowbackThursday: Lily Allen – ‘The Fear’

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‘The Fear’ was the lead single taken from Lily Allen‘s second studio album, ‘It’s Not Me, It’s You’. It’s incredible to believe but this track was actually UK Number 1 back in 2009…10 years ago! In fact, it stayed at the top of the UK Singles Chart for four consecutive weeks resulting in it being the longest running Number 1 song, in the UK, for 2009.

Despite the glistening, electropop elements to the song that see a barrage of synths weave their way throughout the track, its lyrics are deep, highlighting and poking fun at the problems with consumerism, celebrity lifestyles (and certain well-known tabloids’ obsessions with them) and the postmodern condition of the world.

The song was co-written and produced by monster-hit creator, Greg Kurstin, and saw the starlet adopting a new, ethereal and more mature sound.

The music video is pretty great too, with Lily Allen emerging from a caravan, before returning to reveal the interior of a massive mansion where she is joined by a large group of dancers, eventually performing amongst some giant, brightly-coloured, dancing presents. It’s very dream-like and actually perfectly reflects the tone and topic of the track itself.

It’s an all-round incredible track and easy to see why it reached the Number 1 spot…I just can’t believe it’s already a decade old!

What are your thoughts of this throwback jam by the incredible Lily Allen? Do you have a #ThrowbackThursday track to recommend us? Please leave your thoughts or song suggestions in a comment or via social media.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘The Fear’ can be downloaded on iTunes now – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/the-fear/731919848?i=731919950


#TunefulTuesday: Lauv & Troye Sivan – ‘i’m so tired…’

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There’s something instantly gripping about Lauv and Troye Sivan‘s recent collaboration, ‘i’m so tired…’, meaning I just can’t get this song out of my head!

Maybe it’s the repetitiveness of the chorus, the brilliantly-used vocal distortion and electronic harmonies, used periodically throughout, or perhaps it’s the combination of a light guitar tied with the electro drum beat and sharp finger clicks that have created something wonderfully unique, resulting in the song living on repeat for me.

One thing’s for certain – this track is already one of my favourite songs of 2019 and the year has barely begun! I’d love to hear a collaboration album from the pair!

The video for the song is pretty cool too – I love how it’s stylised to be like an old 70s/80s camcorder capturing home video-style footage, such as Troye Sivan riding on top of a car, through the neighbourhood. Equally, the lyrics are brilliantly reflected, with Lauv performing amongst various couples, as though he’s not there; a great little storyboarding idea!

What are your thoughts of this incredible collaboration between Lauv and Troye Sivan? Do you have your own #TunefulTuesday track to recommend us? Please leave your thoughts or song suggestions in a comment or via social media.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘i’m so tired…’ can be downloaded from iTunes now – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/im-so-tired/1448700180?i=1448700185


#Review: Big Wild – Superdream 🏜

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Big Wild is the moniker of American producer, composer and DJ, Jackson Stell. Having been producing music since he was just 14 years old, it wasn’t until 2012 that he began producing music under the name Big Wild. It was in 2015 that the electronic music duo, ODESZA, asked him to support them on a couple of dates of their tour, having discovered him on SoundCloud. Now, 2019 sees the release of his debut album, Superdream. Here’s what we have to say about it…

Big Wild - Superdream.jpg

From the very beginning, Superdream is an album the doesn’t let up for a minute and has some of the most intricately crafted and beautifully delicate production, I’ve ever heard on a record.

‘City Of Sound’ launches straight in, with a funky, disco-like quality and big vocal harmonies that are very reminiscent of Foster The People‘s ‘Pumped Up Kicks’. From there, we’re almost immediately led into single, ‘Joypunks’ – a bouncy, uplifting instrumental track which uses broken-up vocal sounds to create a really unique-sounding, nonsensical hook which you can’t help but try to sing along with.

I could go on because there is just so much to love about this album, however there are four tracks that really stand out above the rest:

‘6’s To 9’s’ is a huge track; the production is truly top-notch – there are these wonderfully understated verse vocals, married with high-pitched harmonies that build from a calm intro and verse into a gargantuan chorus, with sensational, gospel-like elements – it’s a truly epic track with a stunning performance from Rationale. There’s something almost sensual about the song.

‘No Words’ has some serious St Lucia qualities to it, with a big, gang-vocal chorus and some natural, night sounds during the breakdown.

The whole record feels as though there are religious undertones throughout; maybe it’s just because it sets such a high standard for the genre?!

‘Alley-Oop’s infectious beat courses right through you, giving off some reggae-like vibes and features vocals from iDA HAWK. The chorus is huge, which a big instrumental push behind the “Oop” to really emphasise it. There’s something a little Paloma Faith about the vocal, in places.

The last of the four biggest tracks has to be ‘Purple Sand (My Home)’, a song with broken-up pan flute/whistle sounds riding throughout, giving it a real organic feel and tropical flavours. It’s a very reflective song, looking back to a place you miss and long to be.

There’s lots of other things to love about Superdream too – ‘Pale Blue Dot’ is a bizarrely captivating instrumental that weaves together a gritty bass line, retro, horror organ notes and a chopped-up accordion-like sound. ‘Maker’ is truly ethereal and sounds like a modern-day ABBA track, with the vocal melodies and some of the instrumentals. ‘Heaven’ features a big drop and is pretty club-like but with more depth and diversity than most modern club tunes – it’s very refreshing.

The album draws to a close with ‘Awaken’, another instrumental that has large, spacious moments to it and a modern, religious-like style to the big moments. In fact the whole record feels as though there are religious undertones throughout; maybe it’s just because it sets such a high standard for the genre?!

Some of the best things about Big Wild‘s production are the way he takes ordinary sounds and distorts them, to the point they’re almost unrecognisable, yet become instantly captivating. It’s also quite evident that he loves big bass booms to really hit the listener, but they’re used just the right amount, making for a massive impact!

This is already a contender for album-of-the-year, within the genre, and 2019’s only just begun! Big Wild has set the bar high for himself with this truly electrifying debut and this is surely set to catapult his career to new heights. I just can’t wait to see what he puts out next and watch as he continues to grow and evolve. Superdream is super sensational!

Rating
4-5


‘Superdream’ is out now and can be downloaded from iTunes – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/superdream/1438818174


Superdream on Spotify

Superdream (Audio Video Playlist)


We hope you’ve enjoyed our review! What do you think of this producer’s debut album? Are you as much of a fan as us? What would you rate it out of 5? Please leave your thoughts in a comment or via our social media.


Enjoyed this? Check out some of our other reviews here:

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Matt – Muzik Speaks
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#Two4Tunesday: A R I Z O N A – ‘Freaking Out’ & Andreas Wijk – ‘MADONNA’


   

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A R I Z O N A – ‘Freaking Out’

I love this band so much and they just seem to go from strength to strength with their infectious brand of epic, house-inspired pop music.

The track just builds and builds perfectly – I can see people dancing like mad in a stadium.

The song was released as part of a double A-side single, COLD NIGHTS // SUMMER DAYS. It’s been a couple of years since the band’s debut album but hopefully this signals an upcoming, second album.

This song is also featured on my ‘Save A Life’ playlist. In the few days since it’s release, I’ve had it on repeat and it’s really helped me let loose.


‘Freaking Out’ is on iTunes for downloading now! – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/freaking-out/1406503425?i=1406503440



Andreas Wijk – ‘MADONNA’

Known on YouTube for doing some covers and notable for being a fashion model, this appears to be one of the first couple of original singles from Andreas Wijk.

The single’s cover caught my eye first with the artist recreating some classic Madonna album covers, but when I checked out the track, was instantly gripped.

The singer’s falsetto vocals stand out stunningly over the fairly relaxed beat but the chorus is damn catchy and even got some sexy vibes going on.

No music video exists yet but we’ll keep you updated when one emerges.


‘MADONNA’ can also be downloaded from iTunes now! – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/madonna/1400557925?i=1400558686


Matt – Muzik Speaks
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