Music

19th April, NMF!

This week I am devastatingly ill, so cannot deal with anything less than perfect. Luckily for me, and us, this is one of the best weeks so far. Deliciously lush production inbound:

DINAH JANE / PASS ME BY

It’s been a while since Fifth Harmony went their separate ways, with Camilla Cabello capitalising almost immediately to resounding success. Unfortunately, as usual, the remaining girls have had to work beneath her shadow with each release. Luckily ‘Pass Me By’ is one of the strongest girl-group-member-goes-solo singles I’ve ever heard. It’s sultry, sexy and sleek – her vocals drenching the production like oil. It’s just one of part of a fantastic little ‘tringle’ EP. Check it out.

JADE BIRD / SIDE EFFECTS

Consistent and excellently crafted folk-pop at its best. That’s what Jade Bird does to a T – don’t expect any less. With a vocal that manages to flit between tenderness and crunchy aggression, ‘Side Effects’ is her most instant song yet. With a Nerina Pallot mega-hit melody, warm Lissie-esque production. It’s summer in a sweet 3 minutes.

OLIVIA NELSON / NO ANSWER

Rihanna is arguably one of the most influential artists of our time, and she absolutely does not get enough credit for that. ‘No Answer’ sounds like it could slot right into the last three Rihanna albums – a perfect showcase of world-building and rich, bassy production. Olivia’s delicate and stunning vocal working in contrast to provide something really special.

TALLSAINT / HARD LOVE

I’ll admit I actually gasped when the song started. Sometimes you hear something and think ‘Holy shit, they’ve got balls’, and the way ‘Hard Love’ crashes immediately into this electro-rock K-Pop like chorus without any warning is so stellar. Reminding me immediately of Rina Sawayama’s ‘Alterlife’, this is pop music as its most exciting. I didn’t know Tallsaint before 2019, but she’s making sure I don’t leave without her name on my lips.

AU/RA / ASSASSIN

You’ll know AU/RA from her viral hit ‘Panic Room’ a few years back. She was snapped up by her label immediately, followed by bragging that they knew she’d be at the top of the game eventually. It’s hard to hear ‘Assassin’… and argue with that? Absolutely brilliant production, just weird enough for her to stand out and memorable symbolism painted through out. It’s basically ‘Ready For It…’ but with actual heart.

LOLO ZOUAI / CAFFEINE

Check out Lolo’s new album High Highs to Low Lows as soon as you have the time to do so, because you’ll find crisp as spring grass tracks like this in abundance. It’s the next step for pop music – trap leaning melody based minimal glory. The perfect music for summer.

EMILY VAUGHN / BITCH

Emily Vaughn has already delivered some incredible singles this year, showcasing an artist that isn’t afraid to try some new sounds and establish herself as someone that deserves to be listened to. ‘Bitch’ is an amalgamation of sounds and trends you wouldn’t expect to work together, sounding like some incredible Fifth Harmony/Tove Lo remix, and it’s her strength as an artist that brings it all together. The production absolutely soars, but the entire time it’s Emily we’re thinking of. Incredible.