There’s a lot of uncertainty around the world right now, but one thing’s for sure: artists from all corners of the earth are making sure their craft still thrives during these crazy times. Isla Noir is no exception.
Back on the scene for the first time since her debut EP (2012), “Hawkmen”, Isla Noir has just released her newest single, “Breathe Underwater”.
To Isla, the ocean is like a second home. Growing up in Australia meant every summer and many seasons in between were spent by the sea. Now based in Vancouver, the artist has lived in many places around the world over the years, and brings all her memories back to life through her music.
Breathe Underwater encapsulates twelve years of ocean-exploration, a journey that began with Isla’s first dive in Koh Phi Phi back in 2008. Through this song, she transports you to a world beneath the waves, and squeezes more than a decade of subaqueous memories into four and half minutes. The pulsating bass paired with crystal clear vocals makes you feel like you’re actually forty metres below the surface.
Isla’s style could be described as “dark pop” – although it seems almost unfair to narrow her music down to one genre. Isla Noir writes and produces her own songs which are drawn from her life experiences, and beautifully balance true stories and escapism.
ICYMI. Here’s the official video for Said the Whale‘s single, Step Into The Darkness. Their 5th studio album ‘as long as your eyes are wide‘ is due March 31st, and if you’ve heard the two released singles, you’ll know this album is going to be the s**t.
CDs and Vinyls and Swag, oh my! – pre-order your physical copies hereto have their CD in all your cars and vinyl on all your turntables!
Said the Whale at The Vogue Theatre on April 29th is not a show to miss. See you there!
Australia has given the world some pretty rad acts over the years, including 987’s all time favourite band, Men at Work. We’ve only heard their 1981 hit ‘Down Under,’ but still it has earned them the top spot in our hearts, and on our music blog…but I digress.
Heaps Good Friends. Remember the name. This new Aussie group consists of Emma Fradd (vocals/guitar) and Nick O’Connor (bass/synths/production/drums), friends of 9 years. Thank you Torin, our ears in Melbourne, for the discovery.
They haven’t performed live yet and have only a few songs out, so now is the time to catch the wave before your friends do—that’s right, we’re calling it now, expect big things coming from Heaps Good Friends. They’re working on a live set as we speak, so be ready.
You might think it’ll be long before this peanut brittle pop duo comes to Canada all the way from Australia but there’s a link: Emma Fradd lived in Canada for 6 years. Indeed, they are globetrotters. The two live 1601km apart (Australia’s a wide place u know). Mikhail Din has been corresponding with the group. Fradd stated, ‘We have to find time and money for flights, but we’re having heaps good fun: our heads are way in the game.’ Sounds like the key ingredients to the prescient 987.
A couple months ago Yellow Days, a very impressive 17 year old out of England, dropped this amazing EP “Harmless Melodies”. It’s dreamy and synthy and jazzy and reminiscent of King Krule. He released a bonus track last week which is fire too. Favourites are “Gap In the Clouds”, “Your Hand Holding Mine” and “A Little While”.
Milky Chance. German Folk rock. All their songs are sik [sic]. Notably, their new single, “Doing Good,” new being a relative term, as it was released 22 days ago on Soundcloud, HOWEVER, as recently as Jan 13th on Spotify. But I digress; what I’m really here to talk about is the remarkably well mixed kick drum on “Doing Good,” and about how, behind the Folkish veneer hides this, like, singular minimalism of synths and percussion. There, I’ve talked about it. Eyes peeled for their new album, Blossom, set to release March 17th.
Portugal. The Man released this song on December 1st following what they considered to be a rough month for everyone.
“Not to be dramatic and shit, but there’s a flood of noise right now that feels like it might drown us all. And it’s harder and harder to tell what’s fact, what’s opinion, and what’s just straight up bullshit. We’re not able to make sense of it, much less tell you how to make sense of it. Thank God there’s music for that. We’re in this together.”
They are working on a new album, “Gloomin and Doomin,” with Michael Diamond (aka Mike D of The Beastie Boys). No news of when it will be released, but we’re hoping real soon.
I got in a quick word with Dear Rouge (a local alternative dance-rock duo worth checking out if you like to feel good and dance at the same time) and asked them if they had any albums stuck on repeat / would recommend for music lovers to check out this holiday season.
Their recommendation was none other than Childish Gambino‘s third studio album, “Awaken, My Love!”
Childish Gambino aka Donald Glover (actor, writer, musician, rapper, singer-songwriter, comedian, astronaut (probably)), came in strong with this soulful album, taking a different approach to his previous, more hip-hop dominant works.
As Dear Rouge put it, “We would recommend the new Childish Gambino record. It’s an important record for any music fan to listen to.”