Admittedly, Years & Years was one of the first BBC Sound of… winners in recent memory I hadn’t heard of before their triumph. I hold the yearly finalists to a high standard as most go on to international fame, but I groaned a bit upon finding the London trio claimed ’90s house as an influence. Nothing wrong with the genre; I just feel like every British band and their mothers are claiming some house influence in the wake of Disclosure. Last year’s “Real” is an absolute gem in its own right though, the highlight being singer Olly Alexander’s commanding lead into an eerily woozy club anthem about surrendered love.
“King” seems to tread a similar lyrical territory, but Years & Years have taken the last year to catalyze into a full blown pop act. Alexander thrives in the song’s arena-ready chorus while the band seems to have studied Foster the People and Bombay Bicycle Club‘s handbooks to successfully quirky indie pop. “King” will officially be out March 1st, but this very, ahem, hands-on video should tide you over until then.
Back in November, YONAS dropped a spontaneous release called 4AM that he recorded literally the morning that it came out. 4Am is about him saying he needs these things in life, but then he realizes he got to where he is without them. The video is a solid effort too that looks like a GoPro was used to record it (or some sort of variation).
I have pretty high hopes for MisterWives. The lead singer Mandy is extremely talented and she’s got great guys behind her that know what they’re doing. A talented group that is ready to take the next step in the music business, and I think they will.
Their latest single, Our Own House, is the next offering off of their upcoming album, also titled, Our Own House. You can preorder that here.
Our Own House is that upbeat, dancing pop infused track that is pretty easy on the ears, and you just really can’t get enough of Mandy.
There is a reason coming-of-age films like Dazed and Confused, Fast Times at Ridgemont High, The Myth of the American Sleepover, and Palo Alto all revolve around the same three things: sex, drugs, and youth. The reason is that they are one and same. This is the mixtape that understands that.
Much like those coming-of-age films, it is about not letting the little things bother you and seeing the bigger picture in a small town setting. It is about having the clearest ideas under the cloudiest circumstances and about dark times from which you rise above. It’s about getting really, really high and staying there for a week. It is about traveling to a foreign city and fucking shit up with your friends. It’s about the things you can only do when you’re young. Or maybe it’s just the soundtrack.
Don’t tell my momma I’ve been smoking
“Be Lazy” is the third single from Skizzy Mars‘s The Red Balloon Project. Once again, Michael Keenan handles production, as the pair cruises to a swift 3 for 3 on singles from the new EP. As the title would suggest, this is a song to be lazy to, so smoke to this. Now. Stop doing your homework. Homework is lame. Smoking is tight.
And while you’re at it, make sure to buy the project here.
I’m certain comparing Long Island’s Hotel of the Laughing Tree to chart topping freshmen Meghan Trainor and Mark Ronson is, at best, the most ludicrous thing I have professionally written. Sure, MTV endorsed the Hotel boys with a Woodie Award way back in 2009 and I’m sure they’re all about that bass and funk to some respect, but the comparisons end when their meaty take on proggy indie rock begins. With “Duo” though, which is premiering on Sunset ahead of their sophomore LP early next month, Hotel tapped into a simple fact that catapulted Trainor and Ronson to resounding success: if your influences could be considered “retro” in an appealing way, use ‘em for all they’re worth.
“Duo” has that doo-woppy redux feel the kids seem to be going nuts over these days, but the horns and guitar work recall more love for Springsteen than anyone else. Singer AJ Estrada’s begs you to “wake me from my fever dream” and “bring me back to New Orleans”, but the band sounds as firmly confident and happy as they’ve ever been on “Duo”, mouth horn and laughing outro included. The phenomenal New World Sundown will be available digitally on February 1st via Bandcamp.