BOOT WATCH: 4 artists you need to be listening to this July!
Formed over the lockdown lull, new quartet Porcelain Doll arrived last month in a gloomy haze with their debut release 'Smoke'. The track was a strong announcement to the national scene; led by the cool resonant vocals of front woman Freja and a dark and tempting Grunge guitar line that entices you into the smoky atmosphere with a luring sonic seduction. The energy levels never peak too much, always delivering the fuzzy Grunge-Punk melodies without breaking a sweat. Instead the song relies on the smooth yet powerful vocal performance, reminiscent of The Mysterines and Queen Cult.
Since then they have been gathering momentum thanks to a selection of local live shows and now they are preparing to release single number two. This new track, 'Disconnect' is a little brighter. The vocals are wrapped tightly at times, thus injecting a higher energy into the overall sound. The instrumentals too have more of a bouncy swing that will get fans and newcomers alike swaying along. They are still sounding charmingly fuzzy around the edges but they are laying down clear markers for where they want to be so get listening early to join them as they continue to grow.
Glasgow Post-Punk newcomer's Humour have burst out of last year's lockdowns with a lot to say and a lot of noise to make. Their lyrics vary from "letting people down" to "pets dying", but on this debut single 'Yeah, mud!' they are sharp and direct, hitting you with that simple yet effective phrase that you can't help but chant back. Being backed by Prescription PR is a pretty good marker for the promise that industry heads see in them as Prescription are far from your 'take whatever comes our way' kind of PR. They have manufactured distinct aesthetics and fan bases for some of the country's most exciting Punk and Post-Punk acts such as IDLES and Fontaines D.C. so for them to back Humour at such an early stage shows promising signs for the band.
The new single opens with a fuzzy wall of distorted guitars that almost, but not quite, mask a bittersweet riff that is very comparable to those aforementioned bands. The lyrics are delivered with a solemn optimism, fast-paced lyrics barrel over one another throughout the verses before, what sounds like the whole band, come together for an emotionally conflicted melody that is both melancholic and hopeful. There are glimpses of the more Art-Punk elements that bands like Shame and Keg have been mastering, with clever drum patterns and unexpected instrumental flairs flavouring the sound nicely. This a really strong debut
If you're after a more blissful sound to ease you into the festive period then Indie Folk Singer-Songwriter Dez Rocksteady may be for you. The self professed 'Sweety Guy' has a knack for writing charmingly innocent love songs that are built for dark nights next to the fire wrapped in your favourite knitted jumper. He emerged at the start of 2020 with his debut EP filled with three stripped-back bedroom written love songs that all had that charming campfire vibe. He followed this up with a string of singles yet he really came into his own last January with the track 'Space To Breathe' that offered a slightly more built-up, spacey atmosphere. It is a sadder, more introspective number and in true Gen Z style it was this that really connected with fans.
2022 has seen the songwriter return with two new tracks that seem to act as audible markers of his development. The first, 'Where I Need To Be' has an almost hectic instrumentation as there is always some unexpected instrumental elements coming in from all angles, whether it be the winding Blues guitar or the playful chimes. It has a groovy bounce which probably makes it Dez's most dance inducing track to date. Most recently 'You Don't Need Much (To Do A Lot)' saw him to turn to his trademark carefree, sunshine atmosphere. It is a purely blissful track in both sound and lyrical content. The slick acoustic rhythm has the charm of your favourite street side busker while the smooth vocal delivery and joyous lyrical message has a sophistication and songwriting finesse to it that demonstrates his best qualities! The perfect summer soundtrack.
With only one track to their name, Sheffield's Indie Rockers LUNARCA are already gathering a big audience through their combination of a youthful freshness and an audible appreciation for the music greats of old. Openly influenced by the retro classics from The Beatles to Queen, the four lads manage to churn the vocal inflections and classic rollings riffs of the 60s through a 00s Indie mangle on their debut single 'Living As Me'.
Opening with big acoustic strums and an instantly-attention grabbing solo vocal, the track quickly jumps into an Indie ramble. Pounding tom drum patterns ring of The Who and provide a solid, punching base to the sound while jangly guitars flavour the song with a swirling vibrancy. The vocals are probably the biggest standout on this track as they are delivered forcefully and brightly yet with just enough of a coarse gritty twang to convey an infectious passion. It may be early days but these guys are definitely ones to watch on the Indie circuit this year.
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