#Review: Klingande – The Album

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Klingande started out as a production duo back in 2012, releasing a couple of notable tracks. However, following the departure of one half of the pair in 2014, Cédric Steinmyller chose to continue using the moniker, as a solo venture. Since then and with a string of singles and remixes under his belt, the French DJ and tropical house producer, is now releasing his debut album, The Album. Here’s what we have to say about it…

Klingande - The Album

Klingande‘s aptly-titled debut album, The Album, sees the producer putting out a double-disc record. The first of which is a body of work that sounds sonically polished and wonderfully well collected together, whilst the second disc is more a collection of the producer’s previous hits and well-known tracks.

The first disc is definitely an album that has been inspired by the likes of the late Avicii, blending real instruments with electronic elements. It would appear that there are other influences being played with too, with a real sense of the Deep South of America interwoven throughout – such as ‘Sinner’ (featuring Stevie Appleton) with country-style acoustic guitars in the verses and bluesy guitar riffs in the chorus. Or By The River’ that has slick guitars and features the raspy yet soulful vocals from Jamie N Commons. Even a harmonica finds its way onto the album (courtesy of French harmonica player, Greg Zlap) on the refreshing and rather frantic, surefire fan-favourite, ‘Ready For Love’ (also featuring vocals from UK singer-songwriter, Joe Killington).

The album opens with his latest single, ‘Amsterdam’ (the first of two collaborations with pop duo BRIGHT SPARKS) an acoustic-led, mellow dance track with a heavy underlying bass which sounds almost separate to the rest of the track, in a really interesting way. The second collaboration with BRIGHT SPARKS is previous single, ‘Messiah’ a subtle yet very catchy track, with some interesting fills, like a great dubstep-style wob-wob, leading into the final chorus.

‘Simple Man’ has some beautiful, distant gospel backing vocals, topped off with a deep lead vocal. This track is definitely a nod to his older sound, as it’s very saxophone led. Meanwhile, ‘Famous’ is quite different in tone to the rest of the album, particularly as it’s the first track on The Album to feature a female vocal.

The Album is a wonderful collection of songs that bring about an interesting new depth to dance music, making it stand out from a lot of other EDM.

Besides ‘Ready For Love’ (a personal favourite!), the final two tracks are possibly the best ones on the record. ‘Alive’ is a very positive track about things you won’t allow to get to you or defeat you and whilst the lyrics are not necessarily the deepest or most well-written, it’s catchy as hell and the message is great! Equally, closing track, ‘Only Breath’ (and the second to feature an unknown female vocal) is an airy and atmospheric song, with a synth rhythm that is pure euphoria – a wonderful track in spite of the inevitable dance drop.

The second half of The Album serves as more of a greatest hits, collating a bunch of Klingande‘s previous releases from the past few years – a time when he was more recognised for his prominent piano and saxophone use.

Whilst reviewing The Album, I chose to focus my attention mainly on the first half of the record, due to it being a more comprehensive collection of songs, however what the second half does do, is bring most of his previous releases together in one place and showcase just what growth this artist has been through, whilst the first half marks a new chapter in his career.

The Album is a wonderful collection of songs that bring about an interesting new depth to dance music, making it stand out from a lot of other EDM, but at its core, still uses tried, tested and much-loved dance sensibilities. This is a record that will be enjoyed by people of all ages and could quite easily be the perfect party companion. Given the growth demonstrated on this record, it’ll be interesting to see what direction Klingande goes in next!

Rating
4


‘The Album’ is out now and can be downloaded from iTunes – https://music.apple.com/gb/album/the-album/1484567866


The Album on Spotify

Amsterdam featuring Bright Sparks (Official Lyric Video)

Messiah featuring Bright Sparks (Official Video)

By The River featuring Jamie N Commons (Official Video)

Jubel (Official Video)


We hope you’ve enjoyed our review! What do you think of the producer’s debut album? What would you rate it out of 5? Please leave your thoughts in a comment or via our social media and feel free to share our review.


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Matt – Muzik Speaks
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#MellowMonday: KAWALA – ‘Heavy In The Morning’

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Check out our interview with Dan and Jim from KAWALA.

KAWALA started out as a duo in Leeds, comprised of Jim Higson (vocals) and Dan McCarthy (acoustic guitar & vocals). The pair began making their own distinctive sound, comprised of close vocal harmonies and rhythmic finger-style acoustic guitar, taking inspiration from the likes of Bombay Bicycle Club.

Having already made a huge impact on the live scene, the pair are now backed by a full band and are expanding their sound to incorporate atmospheric electric hooks and more tribal-sounding drum patters. They even signed to Virgin EMI earlier this year, releasing their first single with the label, ‘Play It Right’.

Now the band are back with their latest track, ‘Heavy In The Morning’. Whilst the track is more of a return to their original sound, it is fantastic to see just how beautifully their voices compliment one another and how seemingly simplistic background sounds can in fact produce such a dynamic depth to a song.

This is undoubtedly an interesting band to keep an eye on, especially if their most recent singles are anything to go by – their album should be pretty eclectic!

Unfortunately, no music video has emerged yet, but we’ll be sure to update you when one does.

What are your thoughts on this up and coming band? Do you have a #MellowMonday track you could recommend us? Please leave your thoughts or song suggestions in a comment or via social media.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘Heavy In The Morning’ can be downloaded off iTunes now – https://music.apple.com/gb/album/heavy-in-the-morning-single/1480786067


#FeelGoodFriday: Maroon 5 – ‘What Lovers Do’ featuring SZA


   

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Maroon 5 are gearing up to release their sixth album in November this year (2017) and with a series of new singles since their fifth album, V, this is the latest to be released from their upcoming LP.

‘What Lovers Do’ features American singer SZA in addition to Adam Levine‘s trademark falsetto vocals, tied together with house-style synths and upbeat drums and handclaps. It’s got a great summery vibe to it and it comes right at the end of the season to give us one more mood boost before autumn sets in.

The singles the band have been releasing have had a real R&B tint to them and it sure excites me for their upcoming album.

*UPDATE* The music video has emerged online and as I suspected, it’s epic! Great visuals and superb use of CGI effects throughout, albeit in quite a cheesy way, but it’s certainly humorous and fun.

What are your thoughts on the band’s latest summery jam? Have you got a #FeelGoodFriday track you’d like to suggest to us? Please leave your thoughts or song recommendations in a comment or hit us up via social media.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘What Lovers Do’ can be downloaded off iTunes now – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/what-lovers-do-feat-sza-single/id1274373328


#FeelGoodFriday: OneRepublic – ‘No Vacancy’


   

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After releasing an open letter to fans, in which Ryan Tedder reveals that he nearly suffered a nervous breakdown and pulled the plug on the band, he informed fans that OneRepublic were changing!

From now on, the band are planning to release new music as and whenever they can – no album cycles, just new music! This is a refreshing outlook for a band and means that they won’t be bound by recording albums in the same way any more.

As such, the first single the band have released (after pretty much abandoning promotion of the uber diverse record, Oh My My) is their new track, ‘No Vacancy’ and my word is it a summer banger!

The track has hints at the current tropical house trend yet still retains that iconic OneRepublic sound – the track is an instant hit and just reinforces the golden nuggets they can produce!

No music video’s been released but the lyric video is below – check it out!

What are your thoughts on OneRepublic’s latest single? Got 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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‘No Vacancy’ can be downloaded off iTunes now – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/no-vacancy-single/id1228942079


#WildCardWednesday: Cazzette – ‘Handful Of Gold’ featuring JONES


   

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Swedish electronic music duo, Cazzette, have recently released an exciting new track that is catching a lot of people’s attention, particularly from the dance music community.

‘Handful Of Gold’ features London-born vocalist, JONES, who released her debut album last year. The track features a rather light beat, enhanced with dreamy guitars before dropping into a rather intense, horn-sounding slam. The whole track is topped off stunningly, by JONES‘ soaring vocals. It’s a song I can picture massive crowds dancing to at big dance festivals this summer.

The track will also be featured on Cazzette’s upcoming EP, ‘Time’, which is scheduled to be released on June 23rd 2017. No official video has been released but for now, we have another video featuring the track, below.

What are your thoughts of this club-like banger? Got a #WildCardWednesday track to recommend us? Please leave your thoughts or your own song suggestions in a comment or hit us up via our social media.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘Handful Of Gold’ can be downloaded off iTunes now – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/handful-of-gold-feat-jones/id1223012347?i=1223012349


#SundayFunday: Lady Gaga – ‘The Cure’


   

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It’s come as a complete surprise, but Lady Gaga has literally just dropped her latest single, The Cure’, today.

After performing it for the first time at this year’s Coachella (2017), the singer has also released the track via iTunes and Spotify.

It is the first new music from the singer since last year’s album, Joanne. It’s unclear, as yet, what she plans to do with the song – could it be the sign of a new album? Or is it just a present to her adoring fans? No one knows yet.

The song itself is more of a step in the direction of her earlier music (The Fame) and is a far cry from 2016’s Joanne but it certainly is catchy. However, it does feel a little safe from the singer as it’s definitely got vibes of the current Tropical House trend but she’s definitely put her mark on it – undoubtedly it’ll chart well! I do like it though – a good track.

Unfortunately no music video has been released as yet, but of course I’m sure one will follow. Until then, see the fan-recorded debut performance at 2017’s Coachella.

What are your thoughts of the singer’s latest, surprise single? Please leave your thoughts or your own #SundayFunday song suggestion in a comment or via social media.

Matt – Muzik Speaks
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‘The Cure’ can also be downloaded via iTunes, now – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/the-cure/id1227018130?i=1227018435


#Review: Will Joseph Cook – Sweet Dreamer


   

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Will Joseph Cook is a Kent-born singer songwriter who’s been hard at work crafting his sound, supporting on several tours and then in October 2016, embarked on a headline tour. Since then, we had a chat with him about what he’s been up to recently (check out the latest interview) and he’s put the finishing touches to his debut album. This is, Sweet Dreamer.

Will Joseph Cook - Sweet Dreamer

The album kicks off with the chilled sing-along track, ‘Biggest Fan’ with it’s slightly country-tinted guitar twangs, making for the perfect way to open this rather cinematic record. It leads perfectly on to one of Will‘s biggest hits, ‘Sweet Dreamer’; a funky song with incredible production and subtle sounds, topped off with sugar-coated, sombre lyrics; an oxymoron to the all-round uplifting sound of the track.

The record flows incredibly through a whole heap of diverse songs; from indie pop belters to almost club-like anthems, it’s packed with songs that just have to be danced and sung along to. The singer-songwriter also prides himself on his use of imagery to accompany his songs (in the form of well-crafted music videos) but this album also takes you on a journey – each song is able to conjure up images in the mind that could well make for a video – I’m sure that if he had the time, he’d could easily produce videos for each and every song, but that’s because each song on the album feels like it could be a single in its own right.

A forward-thinking, credible pop record, crammed full of diversity, for all the cool kids to revel in. A true modern masterpiece.

Stand-out tracks have to be ‘Treat Me Like A Lover’ and ‘Plastic’ – both have thumping beats that are guaranteed to have you coming back for more; particularly the latter. ‘Plastic’ is tinged with steel drum sounds and massively euphoric vocals that make me certain this huge banger will be a massive hit this summer. As well as some of his other singles, ‘Take Me Dancing’ and ‘Girls Like Me’, which are both awesome, another incredible song is ‘Alive’ – it feels like the song blends many genres and the falsetto vocals are truly captivating. Lastly, both ‘Hands’ and ‘Habit’ are very different songs to the rest of the album; especially ‘Hands’ – it’s a very raw, honest and truthful track that seems almost like a break from the rest of the album.

The production throughout the album is incredible – it comes together amazingly as a cohesive body of work – it’s genre-blending, exciting, playful and all-consuming (in a good way)!

It is undoubtable that this album will be the soundtrack to many people’s summers this year; it’s fun-filled, indie pop that is bursting at the seems with summery vibes, catchy choruses and intelligent lyrics. A forward-thinking, credible pop record, crammed full of diversity, for all the cool kids to revel in. A true modern masterpiece. I can’t get enough of it, and you won’t be able to either.


Will is also off on a UK tour in May, in support of the album. He kicks off the tour at Stereo in Glasgow on 2nd May before travelling to Newcastle, Manchester, Birmingham, Liverpool, Cardiff, Bristol and London. He concludes the tour at The Bullingdon in Oxford on 12th May before heading to several places in Europe. Be sure to check out a date near you – he puts on an amazing show (Check out our review)!


Rating
5


‘Sweet Dreamer’ is out now and can be downloaded from iTunes – https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/sweet-dreamer/id1203346564


Sweet Dreamer on Spotify

Beach (I Wanna Make You Mine) (Official Video)


We hope you’ve enjoyed our review of Will’s debut album. What are your thoughts of it? Are you as much of a fan as us? What would you rate it? Please leave your thoughts in a comment or chat about it via our social media.


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

Muzik Speaks Album Reviews


Matt – Muzik Speaks
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