SINGLE REVIEW: MARK BACINO – NOT THAT GUY

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Background
After devoting the last few years to producing and mixing for various artists, composing for television-film-advertising and writing for publications such as Songwriter’s Market and Guitar World, Mark Bacino finally returns to his post as power pop, singer-songwriter with the release of a new single.

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SINGLE REVIEW: CRYSTALLIZED – PROOF THAT ENEC.E WILL BE THE NEXT BIG THING IN THE SINGAPORE INDIE MUSIC SCENE.

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It begins with a barrage of ambient noise before settling into an acoustic/electric guitar dream-pop soundscape topped by the angelic vocals of Michelle and Lisa. Certainly, the arrangements have altered quite a bit from the way in which the band (now with new lead guitarist and drummer) used to play “Crystallized” live but from my perspective, it feels ‘right’. I would say that guitarist Ridhwan (from wyd:syd) has provided the definitive last piece that completes the jigsaw with his textured work.

After a prolonged wait, it is exciting that Enec.e is finally going to release recorded material & this is big news! Only the tip of the iceberg. MORE!

“Crystallized” is available now.


More info – https://www.facebook.com/enecdote

SINGLE REVIEW: JET NOIR – A COLD DAY IN HELL WILL BRIGHTEN YOUR DAY

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Labelling herself as “electronic progressive goth”, Jet Noir is not too far from the truth. Her sound and vision is true to her artistic intent. Nothing is out of place on this darkly invigorating single. Her sensual spoken word verses segue seamlessly into slinky refrains as images of flickering horror flash before your eyes. Yet there’s an inclination to slow dance your way through this electro piece mesmerised by its insistent beats and arrangements – “The grayness is coming/It’s walking the streets”.

The perfect single for your Halloween predilections, if so inclined.

There are three remixes to consider as well, each one delivers a different perspective but at its core, “A Cold Day in Hell” remains arresting.

Her E.P. The Hall of Ghosts is coming soon.  One to keep an eye out for.


SINGLE REVIEW: MAL BLUM – ROBERT FROST

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A literary reference as a title. A verse melody that sounds like it should have been on the Juno soundtrack. A rather functional chorus tune that borders on being dangerously infectious. All with a charming lofi production that makes it painfully obvious where the source of inspiration comes from.

So yes, this Anti-folk/Pop-rock hybrid ditty is clearly aimed at a particular audience (misfit nerdy teens?) and the cutesy video (with Brocollini the dog!) rather seals the deal as well.

If all this is making sense, then you are going to like Mal Blum and her new album – You Look A Lot Like Me – what’s not to like about music made on its own terms?

SINGLE REVIEW: SLOOM – MAGIC CUP

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If I wasn’t aware that “Magic Cup” was a new song, I would be at a loss to identify which decade it was made in.

The blues riffs, the swampy rhythm section, the distorted vocals and the general shambolic vibe evoke 60s garage rock effortlessly. I would not have been surprised to find out that this was a Sonics or even Blue Cheer track.

But of course, it’s not. It’s Sloom – a rock n roll band from Sydney’s Inner West – with an utterly unoriginal sound that works for the 3 minutes and 33 seconds.

Good dirty fun.

More info.

 

SINGLE REVIEW: MIAMIGO – WHAT I WANT

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Bands like Brighton-based duo MIAMIGO demonstrate that the 80s is still very much a touchstone for modern rock artists.

“What I Want” is taken off the duo’s well received EP – Hard To Love (which was released in June earlier this year) and 80s pop lovers will thrill to the dynamic basslines and the insistent guitar chord patterns.

The video itself is a lofi shaky cam affair that fits the fidgety nature of the single itself. Worth a closer inspection.

SINGLE REVIEW: THE SAM WILLOWS – FOR LOVE

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Into their second single for Sony Music, it’s clear that The Sam Willows have honed their pop technique to a tight construct with “For Love” – the chorus comes with soaring banks of vocals even if the familiar melody does not move listeners that much.

The song recalls Imagine Dragons, Of Monsters & Men and even the quartet’s own “Glasshouse”. Not quite as incongruous as its predecessor “Take Heart”, this time the electro-pop elements complement the song rather well.

The message behind the video is strong and to the band’s credit maintains a personal emotional connection. It might be too close to the bone for many people but if pop music can be used to touch hearts, minds and souls in this manner then kudos to The Sam Willows for at least, taking their best shot at making a statement!

Pre-order the album Take Heart:
https://SonyMusicSG.lnk.to/TSWTakeHeartAlbum

SINGLE REVIEW: BROTHERTIGER – WAKE

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The vocals may be dreamy and indistinct but the melodies and hooks are clear enough to make an impact. There is a smooth electro-organic pop vibe about “Wake” that bodes well for Brothertiger’s new album Out of Touch (released on 4th December).  Am digging the way he utilises the electronics to convey a sense of warmth and comfort – the backing vocals are lovingly layered to grant a rather 80s pop sheen. On repeat mode for sure!

 

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SINGLE REVIEW: LADY LOW’S HELLO SWEET GOODBYE

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Not sure what describing your band as ‘romance rockers’ does for your profile but there you go. Lady Low are not 80s ‘new romantics’ in case you are wondering. In fact, if nothing else this new single with its insistent beat and heavy strings is somewhat reminiscent of The Verve’s “Bittersweet Symphony”. Which might be a good comparison to have actually. In the final analysis, that beat and string hook is quite infectious and it will get stuck in your head, after one listen. Personally, I am thrilled that it’s a pop-rock track that has all the right influences – if that isn’t a recommendation, I don’t know what the hell is!

SINGLE REVIEW: “RISE” BY BRETT RANDELL

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Although it mainly consists of vocals, guitar, strings and a smattering of piano notes, there is a certain dynamism and power that distinguishes Brett Randell’s new single “Rise”. Randell’s voice isn’t too sugary and in fact is rather nasal at times but it conveys the emotion well on this uplifting song of encouragement.  I like how Randell resists the temptation of cluttering up the arrangement and keeps things very spare so that his lyrics shine through. In fact, I almost expect it to break out into a pop-punk anthem but thankfully that never happens. Definitely one to savour, if you are into edgy ballads that carry the weight of a meaningful life message.