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Lazy Sunday Soundtrack: 5 artists to help you rest, relax and recharge



Dunebug


Dunebug is the DIY solo project of Manchester born Chi Limpiroj and, as the name suggests, the project offers a really warm sonic connection to nature. All her music is cosy and comforting whilst still dealing with some complex lyrical ideas. As she says herself, it is music made in her bedroom that gives you the home comforts of your own bedroom. The lo-fi guitars are always present, providing a soft textural base to each track, yet they never dominate. Their is always a socially distanced sonic space given to her own vocals, allowing them to wax and wane throughout the tracks, drifting around the walls of the songs with true freedom.



The new single 'Lie To Me' encapsulates all of this perfectly. Even at first glance the artwork gives a great indication of the single's semantics. The swaying beat and the soothing hug of the vocals makes you feel like you are stumbling through a hazy summer field without a care in the world as the sun glints of tiny bugs who are flying loosely through the air. Yet, as I mentioned, the lyrics aren't always purely blissful. Somehow, the dreamy tones of her music make the cynical lines such as "lie to me like you mean it" slip under the radar without disturbing the sonic trance. It is the perfect music to put on when you want a comforting day inside to yourself, it's like bedroom pop wrapped up in your favourite dressing gown, warm, fuzzy and it transports you into a refreshingly calming world.

 

Deer Fellow


Austin based folk-pop duo Deer Fellow instantly land softly upon the ears with their deeply rich yet dreamily smooth vocal harmonies. The pair met at an open mic night and soon started collaborating, using the gentle Indie rhythms of Matt Salois and the textured violin of Alyssa Kelly to create tracks with an indulgent level of instrumental depth. Most of their songs could sound so simple when performed by other artists as they are not too complex at their core. However, Deer Fellow are so thoughtful in their instrumental layering that they feel intricate and sonically dense.



After the success of their debut EP 'Words Unsaid‘ the duo have returned with their new single ‘For My Sake’ which builds on the gentle cosyness of their EP with much heartier tones. The track begins with really crisp, easy-going Indie vibes similar to Rex Orange County and if it continued in this way it would still make a great track. However, the sharp violin contrasts this vibe and adds a more direct melody that carries you away with its melodic freedom. The combination of their two voices are again a standout. Matt offers his more catchy Indie inflections whereas Alyssa provides a rich underbelly to the vocal palette. Alyssa's voice suggests a sort of reserved power. It feels as though, if she wished, she could stretch the boundaries of the track and pop the blissful bubble at any point by delivering her lines with a passionate soaring tone. Yet, she chooses to hold back this power for another day, simply caressing the edges of the song's laid-back atmosphere with a calming resonant tone.


These vocal pairings combined with the strong, drifting violin and the subtle piano notes that are sprinkled throughout, Deer Fellow create the perfect track for winding down and letting yourself indulge into audible richness. Perhaps the sonic equivalent of a warm Bath and some chocolate truffles?


 


Dominique Simone


If you liked the sound of Alyssa Kelly's rich vocals then look no further than Dominique Simone. She arrived last year with her first ever single that was aptly names ‘Serenity’. Now with 6 more under her belt you can get a good picture of what kind of artist she is evolving into. In terms of lyrical content she expresses the thoughts and feelings that occur when we sit and think by ourselves. ‘Sweater’ talks of bedroom days that are both calming yet lonely making it the perfect soundtrack to any contemplative Sunday afternoon. Her earlier tracks wrap her lyrics in a slightly more cluttered electronic surrounding that reflects her internal thoughts. Yet, her newest tracks have a more natural instrumentation which makes them feel less introspective and more expressive, particularly the powerful build up of ‘Angel’.



Dominique says herself that she aims to make something that makes you feel what cannot be expressed and this reflects in this track. The light guitar rhythm is lucid and winding to begin with which allows her vocals to have a real freedom, just drifting across the surface of the track and giving early signals of her vocal prowess. The instrumentals then begin to build with the deep rolling drums and a more fixed guitar pattern. As it progresses, it snowballs, gaining more and more suspense as her vocals join in whenever they please, landing increasingly richer and more heartfelt every time. This all comes to a crescendo bolstered by big cymbal flourishes. This might be sounding a bit climactic for a lazy afternoon playlist but it is the journey that the song takes you on that lands it in this article. It starts so beautifully and ends with a power that is inspiring. It’s the perfect song for letting your hair down, shedding your cares away and relaxing for a moment but then getting up feeling empowered and reenergised. In fact her whole discography is great for a day spent indoors so dig into her music and look out for her debut EP on the horizon.

 

Marc Bird


The character of Sunderland solo artist Marc Bird has been formed across a number of years, evolving from cinematic pop soundscapes to a more complex concoction. His time at art school provided an expressionistic approach whereas his string of jobs working in the offices of sheet metalwork factories added a sense of realism. His 2020 album 'Bronze' offers a collection of experimental sounds ranging from tightly packed electro rhythms and stirring instrumental landscapes that could soundtrack your next favourite space movie. The album is entrancing and can make the room feel timeless as the tracks float around you. However, it seems he is taking a slightly different route on his long-awaited returning single 'Moon Puddles'.

The track isn't out until February 25th but we took an early listen and it so soothing that it had to go on this list! This time round Marc opts for more natural instrumentation. The opening intimacy of the acoustic guitar is flavoured with the light brush of a snare. As it it progresses it layers up nicely and features more of Marc's own smooth vocals than in the past. Piano notes and a few more percussives are placed sparsely throughout, serving to create a more complex and earthy atmosphere than the spacey vibes of much of his album. Having said this, an electro fuzz regularly washes over the track which creates a strange blend between natural and electronic textures. This mirrors exactly what the title suggests, it is like feeling all the earthy richness of our planet in a strange spacey environment. The brass elements that arrive later on are just the cherry on top, adding a sophisticated richness that is reminiscent of moments on TLSP's album 'Everything You've Come To Expect'. So, look out for release day and why not explore his debut album in the meantime.

 

Jensyn


21 year-old Liverpool-based singer/songwriter Jensyn has been writing and producing music since she was just 14. Back in 2020 she delivered her debut EP ‘Untouchable’. The 5 tracks were generously dipped in dream pop vibes. The title track took her smooth vocals and lushly wrapped them in washed out bedroom guitar sounds and lo-fi percussive grooves. However towards the end of the EP ‘Voices’ dives into a more textural pool of sound and it is into this pool that Jensyn has swum deeper on her brand new EP ‘I Wanna Be There’.



It is a collection that is framed around the first and title track. The song builds a melancholic tension with the perpetual keyboard chords and almost angelic background harmonies that have a sad yet blissful tone to them. It kind of embodies the feeling of living and breathing a moment of sadness, almost embracing the natural emotion, not treating it as a negative one but just accepting it and letting it wash over you. As always, Jensyn adds thick textures behind the track. In this case it is a strings section that bring an emotive swell. The lyrics are poignant too as the words "I wanna be loved within those four borders of my screen" will resonate with us all. The rest of the EP is mostly instrumental soundscapes that see Jensyn use a rich tapestry of instrumentals with harps, brass and samples all providing time across the three tracks to reflect on the gentle melancholia of 'I Wanna Be There'. This is the perfect EP for drifting away and reflecting on on life.