Artists at a glance
FOGGY CITY ORPHAN
GOOD GIRL AND THE BAD TIMES
ME FOR QUEEN
CALLUM PITT – Rabbits
We’ve got a bit of a thing going on for Callum Pitt, here at Fresh On The Net. Our Nick Walker even picked him as a Fave Of The Year, I’ve name-checked him in The Revue and Tom has popped his tune into a Mixtape too, so it’s good to know that visitors to this week’s Listening Post share our admiration.
Rabbits opens with a light and dreamy mood, moving into the risky falsetto we enjoyed in Callum’s debut single You’d Better Sell It While You Can. Risky because not every bloke is Barry Gibb, but Callum knows his craft and carries it off with a slightly classical twist, before revving it, dropping the register and delivering a ‘we’re all in this together’ story of caught-in-headlights catatonics. Callum has a gift for delivering sad songs to happy rhythms. He’s done it again, with anthemic fervour that deserves a crowd singing along.
Sadly, his website tells us there are ‘No Upcoming Events’, so we’ll have to make do with singing along in our own kitchens. Give him a like and a follow to find out about future plans, Here are the all-important links:
FOGGY CITY ORPHAN – Fake News Blues
Fake News and Fact Checking must be the zeitgeist of 2017, so someone had to set it to song. Foggy City Orphan pull it off with rocking arrhythmic aplomb. Loving the energy, the originality and the theatrical neo-punk interludes, we’ll challenge anyone not to have It didn’t happen… It never happened swirling around on ear-worm repeat.
Foggy City Orphan have a solid history with The Listening Post, having made it through to Fresh Faves back in May with Cheer Up, which reviewer Tom Robinson claimed as “my record of the week by a country mile.” It seems they’ve taken his advice on board and brought Fake News Blues in at 2 mins 44, rather than the indulgent 4min 25 of their previous offering (which made it onto the Mixtape anyway).
From Glasgow, two brothers, two others – what more do you need to know? It’s all here in their social media, so give them a click, a like and a follow:
GOOD GIRL AND THE BAD TIMES – We Go This Way
Smooth and electro-soulful, Good Girl and the Bad Times are London and New York based sibling duo with possibly the least informative website on the planet. Not that we’re setting up a competition here, but – come on guys – where’s the About page? Facebook gives a tiny bit more (see above) but then… nothing.
OK, they’re shy. So the music will have to speak for itself. Clearly it has, because visitors to the Listening Post have made it a Fresh Fave, and previous tracks have received similar levels of appreciation, including a spin on the Mixtape. So it’s safe to say they’ve got it going on, and when they’re ready to share a bit more info there’ll be an audience ready to listen.
Meanwhile, headphones on and soak up this deliciously laid-back percussive swoosh, topped off with emotionally engaging, beautifully layered vocals. Follow the social media links by all means – I was going to suggest that you reach them through a chat on Twitter if you really want to find out more but – hey – they don’t seem to do Twitter either. So you’ll have to make the most of Instagram, with photos of possibly the cutest baby on the web. Enjoy!
HOLLAND SOUND – Demons
Maybe Listening Post visitors are relaxed and chilled after the summer break, leading to the choice of another relaxed and chilled electro-soul-pop offering. This one is from singer-songwriter Holland. Guess where she comes from? Yay! Holland! Got it in one! No need for Monkman and Seagull style polymathology here. She’s from Amsterdam, to be precise, and describes her sound as “dark themes, hard beats and sassy.”
Holland has been releasing singles for about 18 months, growing her following and getting attention from music bloggers and her local BBC Introducing – The South, BBC Surrey and BBC Sussex. Whatever she’s doing, it’s clearly working for her and we’ll expect to hear more of her work in our uploader as she hones her craft and her style.
JANDIRA – The Devil You Misled
Despite there being 218 tracks in our uploader this week (yes, you read that right – 218 – it seems musicians have had a busy summer) some leapt out of the speakers and demanded a space in the Listening Post. Jandira‘s The Devil You Misled, all gritty guitars and alt-rock pulsations, made the leap.
Old school they may be, but Jandira doesn’t seem to have been around for long.
No social media, just a Soundcloud account with three equally gritty-rocking tracks dating back all of a month. So we can’t tell you much about them… or him? Sorry. But if you like the sound of musicians playing their instruments like they mean it, who know what they like and deliver it by the shed load, grab your beat-up leather jacket and air guitar along to this one.
LYNDA – Under The Pines
Let’s start by getting any gender confusion out of the way. Lynda is two guys, Russi and Yousef. Making music in Lewisham and bringing 80’s soft R&B to a whole new generation. And why not? If Howard Jones can hit the road again, maybe the time is right for silk jackets, rolled-up sleeves and dodgy perms? Not that these guys have made any fashion faux-pas that we know of…
The song is breathy, keyboardy Berlin-meets-Thomson Twins (wasn’t Tom Bailey doing his thing again recently?). If your memory goes back that far, it’ll trigger nostalgia. If not, it’s retro. Either way, it’s the new super-cool.
BBC Introducing London and various music bloggers seem to agree with our Listening Post visitors that Lynda is worth a listen. They may be relative newbies, having released their first single just four months ago, but they have a whole album on the way, so give them a social like and follow to keep up with their plans.
ME FOR QUEEN – Jessica
This was a bit of a grower for me in this week’s uploader. The good news is that it grew by tempting me to listen just-one-more-time, which is quite a feat when the uploader is as ram-packed as Jeremy Corbyn’s train. And isn’t it a peach of a song?
Me For Queen hails from Fife and is known to family and friends as Mary Erskine. She’s had a bit of Fresh On The Net action before, being hand-picked for Tom’s Mixtape last year. With a crystal clear voice topping the lightest of guitar picking, she’ll draw you in and compel you to hear her story through her song.
There’s a moment of Lucy Spraggan in there, but with calmness of delivery that defies the listener to believe that the song is all true, and all caring. Years of classical training have paid off. This is an artist who knows that less can be much, much more.
Me For Queen? I’d vote for her. But for now, it’ll be a click and a like on all the social platforms. Go on, you know you want to:
SEAWITCHES – Absolve
Hold on tight, to about 38 seconds in. That’s when Jo Herring (vocals, guitar and bass) delivers a lift that’ll have you sitting up sharper, pricking up your ears and wondering why you haven’t heard from these guys before. That alone could be enough to get Seawitches a spot as a Fresh Fave, but there’s more going on in this psychedelic tapestry of a tune. Slightly spooky, uniquely weird (but in a good way) do we want to dance, trance or lie out on a warm summer lawn for this one?
To be fair, we have heard of Seawitches before. They have had an outing on a Mixtape, as well as finding favour with BBC Introducing Merseyside, various radio stations and some taste-making music blogs. Alongside Jo, the band are Jamie Jenkin (Guitar) Saskia Clapton (Bass) and Jams Ward (Drums). Based in Liverpool, if they’re as tight playing live as they sound here, they’re worth the price of a gig ticket.
Sadly, there are none planned for now, so keep an eye on their social channels for more news. Here are the links you need:
VIVIENNE CHI – Junk
Rich, edge-of-blues vocals and a finger-clicking intro, a tiny hint of of Bollywood and percussion to die for. If life is like a box of chocolates, this is the ultimate pick-and-mix. Vivienne Chi is doing her thing, which she describes as “a mix of folk/soul/grunge/electro alt-pop.” Unapologetically eclectic, potentially chaotic but, thankfully, landing intact and under control.
Vivienne doesn’t tell us much about herself, but her blog reveals a genuine gratitude for the attention that her work is receiving from influencers in the industry “it means the earth when people like what you’re making”. Dig a bit further and her music is surprisingly personal and introspective. This is an artist at work. She’s been here before too, having made it to the Fresh Faves back in July with her debut single Vivienne (and not waiting three months to send in her next offering… oh dear).
Vivienne Chi has also found her way onto BBC Introducing in the West, been admired by several influential music blogs and put herself out there live through the festival season. Clearly a hard worker with a plan, we’ll probably be hearing more from her soon (but please leave it three months, Vivienne, as Tom says “so we have space to help other deserving artists”).
WOODEN ARMS – Lost In Your Own Home
Bringing the first Fresh Faves of the new season to a close is contemporary quintet Wooden Arms with a slice of superb musicianship, revealing the band’s classical roots. Oh the strings!
This is a piece that folds you in and carries you along. What’s it about? Who cares! We know that earlier works were inspired by Edgar Allen Poe stories, so there may well be intellectual depth here, but it’s enough just to ride the wave of this complete piece from opening notes to closing crescendo. Their first single from the album – Burial – was also enjoyed by Listening Post visitors, making it a Fresh Fave back in May, so they have form and may well be about to deliver a corker with their sophomore album Trick Of The Light – released 6th October.
Wooden Arms will be promoting the album release with tour dates through Germany and the UK in December – check here to see if they’re playing near you, and give them the likes and follows they deserve by clicking these links:
PS from TR: If you’ve submitted a track that hasn’t been picked for the Listening Post, our team has definitely listened to it and there’s no need to send it again: feel free to send us an even stronger track another week. The same goes if you were picked for the Listening Post but didn’t feature in our Fresh Faves.
But if we’ve recently featured you in our Fresh Faves – or on my BBC Introducing Mixtape – please wait three months before sending us another track, so we have space to help other deserving artists… For more info see Robinson Has A Good Old Moan.