We have the premiere of “Fierce,” the brand new single from Manchester duo KAZE (say that like KAH-zay). This exciting and inventive band first came to our attention by way of their first single and video, the startlingly original “Pinned On You,” which became our video of the month in August last year. “Fierce” is just as inventive. Though it begins with a conventional, piano-driven verse, it quickly builds to dramatic chorus, displaying shades of some of KAZE’s chief influences, including Steely Dan and Radiohead.
As the title hints, “Fierce” is an anthem of empowerment. Songwriters Graham McCusker and Amy Webber tell us, “‘Fierce’ is about finding your inner strength to finally stand up to people who intimidate and bully you. It’s about finding your power and your confidence to stand up to injustices.” Fortunately, the song does not fall victim to cliché, reiterating worn sentiments. It is one of KAZE’s great strengths that they can say something new about such a universal subject, just as they had a new approach to what, at its core, was a breakup diatribe in “Pinned On You.”
Despite a compelling flair for the dramatic, KAZE’s songs are streamlined and economical, filtering weighty prog into thrilling pop. Following up the debut EP No Filter, “Fierce” is further evidence of a promising artistic force.
A stellar standout from Late Cambrian‘s brand new LP Sweet Cambrian High Vol. I & II, “Girl Bag Holder” now has a visual companion in the popular ‘musical video’ format. The clip, directed and edited by primary band members John Wlaysewski and Olive Hui, eschews the lyric’s narrative in favor of a stylized study of a young woman simply biding her time with a bottomless candy dish. Great track, fun video, enjoy:
Northern England has launched yet another pristine pop act, a three-piece called TV ME. Led by Thomas McConnell, the band returned to their Liverpool home this past weekent, at the end of a regional tour, just in time to celebrate the release of their four-song EP, A Broadcast From TV ME. At turns breezy and jarring, the EP mixes synthesized and organic instruments in a Harry Nilsson-meets-Brian Wilson-meets-Jon Brion Optigan blur, infused with some extra-modern electronic grooves. Dig it.
Boston-to-L.A. transplants Aloud have released a fantastic new single, “Falling Out Of Love.” It’s a classic soul style ballad, propelled by a tumbling horn arrangement and of course Jen de la Osa‘s belting, plaintive lead vocal. And I would be remiss not to commend unto you the single’s B-side, “Empty House.” Singer Henry Beguiristain takes the lead on this one, and while the style diverges a bit from “Falling Out Of Love,” the vintage feel remains, with powerhouse drums plowing through guitar reverb and a coiling Farfisa organ line (shouts out to drummer Charles Murphy and producer Benny Grotto). Fall out of love this Valentine’s Day, won’t you? Vinyl 45 and digital versions available here.
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Video Of The Month: “I Get A Kick Out Of Being Kicked Around By You” By Royal Chant
Every month, the OurStage community (that’s you) listens and ranks the songs competing on OurStage.com. Once those songs get to the Finals stage, five grand prize winners are selected. Those winners get featured on the ‘OurStage on Amazing Radio’ show, broadcast to hundreds of thousands of music fans around the world. Last month’s show is streaming now. Below are the top five that you’ll hear on this month’s show, along with other favorites from the charts.
Available last week to their PledgeMusic campaign supporters only, the new one from Late Cambrian is finally out worldwide. Sweet Cambrian High Vol. I & II is the first new collection from the Brooklyn band since 2015, and it reflects the metamorphosis of Late Cambrian into purveyors of tight, sophisticated electro/alternative pop. Sweet Cambrian High fulfills the promise of the handful of irresistible singles and intriguing videos released during the extended production of the album (and while Late Cambrian songwriter and singer John Wlaysewski produced Tracy Bonham‘s Modern Burdens, recently named one of the 50 best albums of 2017 by Rolling Stone). It’s their strongest set yet, reflecting a confident and original new direction, and you can get it here.