With my deadlines out of the way, this past week has been filled with sipping copious amounts of tea whilst discovering some fantastic new bands and musicians. Yet in the midst of the many incredible songs and bands I found (check out Sundara Karma if you’re looking for a Foals or Maccabees-esque indie anthemic band, or Kagoule if you’re feeling more turn-the-volume-up-full lo-fi alternative rock), there was one that stood out in particular.
Leo James Conroy has a voice that can only be compared to the likes of Matt Corby, and lyrical abilities that reflect the Jeff Buckley tracks that make you hang onto every word whilst you watch the raindrops on the window. Hailing from Manchester (I do have a soft spot for a fellow Mancunian, but I promise you this has in no way biased my judgement of him), Leo is slowly starting to make a name for himself, and you can definitely see why!
Check out his incredible voice on Love Blind Eyes:
Or just how insane he is in general in Forbidden Fruit:
I can see Leo going far, so I’m glad I’ve found him now before he blows up! If you’ve fallen head over heels for his music, just as I have, you can catch him at Band on the Wall in Manchester on May the 21st.
It’s been a while since I last shared my new musical loves, as my University work took priority over my life. But while I was away I delved into the collections of some incredible artists and it took me a long time to be able to compile them into the most promising acts to keep your eyes on!
These guys have stacks of potential and I can really see them making it big, and I just can’t wait to hear what more they have to bring!
Declan McKenna – Paracetamol
Declan McKenna has already started to make waves with his incredible music that can only be described as the lovechild of Ezra Koenig and Jamie T. Yet it’s his Alex Turner- like lyrical abilities that lead him to be signed to Columbia Records. I’m obsessed with this track, Paracetamol, right now, and I know you will be too!
Black Honey – Corrine
Black Honey have completely taken over my life these past few months. Their lo-fi indie sound has definitely started to make an impression on the scene, and despite Izzy (lead vocalist) stating that “If it was my way we’d still be a secret band”, they’re growing with every waking second, and I can’t wait to see what they do next.
Rukshana Merrise – Money
I’ve been a fan of Rukshana Merrise for quite some time now, but I can’t say I was fully excited about her when I initially found her earlier tracks, yet, as with most artists, it only takes one song to change my opinion of everything. Money is an incredibly upbeat track that I can’t help but bob my head to and scream along to. After signing to one of my favourite labels, Communion Records, I knew that Rukshana would be going on to great things, and this is proof of that!
The Stockport lads have done it again! Gracing us with yet another anthem that rivals the likes of The Courteeners, you just want to put on your leather jacket and listen to this on repeat whilst pretending you’re a lot cooler than you are. Blossoms have been quoted to say their sound is greatly inspired by both the Arctic Monkeys and Abba, and with the sharp synths and gritty indie guitar melodies, you can completely feel that in this track.
Blossoms have been recommended as one of the BBC’s Sound Of 2016, and it’s easy to understand why! Although the five piece have been cooking up a storm in Manchester for the past few years, I’m excited to see what they are yet to bring, but I think they’ll struggle to better this masterpiece!
At Most A Kiss is free to download when you pre-order their debut EP, At Most A Kiss, on February 19th.
If you couldn’t tell by now, I’m a sucker for finding music that matches the weather and atmosphere of a certain place. That’s why this month’s top picks in up and coming music are some of the most perfect songs for giving you that winter feel.
Susie Suh x Robot Koch – Here With Me
This beautifully minimalistic song just screams of early morning condensation on windows. With features on TV programmes such as Blacklist I’m surprised that I hadn’t heard this little gem earlier, yet here I am obsessing over every word she softly whispers. This track radiates atmosphere and emotion and so I can see this having a huge use in film and TV soundtracks in the near future!
Joseph Lofthouse – 31
Joseph Lofthouse, a singer-songwriter hailing from Lancashire, has supported the likes of Elbow on tour, and is well known for his incredible songwriting skills. His debut EP, Grace, has recently been released and features this relaxing beauty. Grab yourself a blanket and hot drink and let yourself be sucked in by this stunning song, 31.
Jack Watts – Red Shortbread
Jack Watts puts his all into every performance – just search for his recording of Push Blue for the Mahogany Sessions and you’ll know! – and this song isn’t exempt from this. With a catchy chorus and a passion that’s hard to mimic, Jack Watts is beginning to create a stir and I can’t wait to see what he has in store.
Starling is one of those musicians that can instantly take your breath away. With gorgeous vocals that could put Hannah Reid of London Grammar to shame, she is definitely one of those singers that make you question whether it’s even possible to be so good. The delicate vocals of the chorus and the soft piano in Take It Down scream of her potential, and you just know you won’t forget about her anytime soon.
Take It Down is the first single from Starling’s EP featuring three other incredible songs: Craving, Wild Heart and Misfit. Each one has it’s own captivating atmosphere, that it’s quickly become one of my favourite EP’s of the year!
Yet I think it will be Craving that is Starling’s golden key, with the kind of beat that is pure perfection for soundtracks and fierce vocals that you immediately fall in love with.
Starling recently signed to Communion Records, and I can only see things going up for her! What do you think? Leave me comments below on your opinion and whether or not you love her as much as I do!
After catching their energetic performance at a festival over the summer, I was desperate to find more material from this exciting new band, yet I couldn’t find a thing! Despite the word ‘HAUS’ coming up in search engines as anything but the band, I can definitely see them growing in popularity over the coming year, and becoming as big as the Llandudno stars Catfish and the Bottlemen. Yet after a long struggle, I finally found Haze, and I can only describe it as one word: addictive. Haze has a lively and youthful feel to it that makes you want to pick up that skateboard that’s been gathering dust in your garage for years.
Fans of Catfish and the Bottlemen and Foals will love this!
I have been a huge fan of Leo Stannard for some time, and my little heart was breaking when there was a lull in Stannard’s every growing momentum. Yet it seems that, a year later, my craving for new material has been answered: and with a surprising twist.
After recently signing to the esteemed Black Butter record label along with the likes of Rudimental, Lilly Allen and Everything Everything, it seems that Leo Stannard has taken a leap into forward motion. The single may be long overdue, but having spent a year recording with producer Rich Cooper, we can’t wait for what’s to come from this talented 19 year old.
In I Need Time, it seems that Stannard has dropped his trademark acoustic guitar and replaced it with a smooth piano. But it’s clear that his immense guitar skills, featured in songs such as Please Don’t, match that of his talent on the piano, as the track beings with a smooth lick of a swung melody that comes natural so the singer-songriter. There is definitely a him of a jazz inspiration on this track, proving yet again, that trends always come back around; yet there is something to the song that has an original edge, that gives a lot of promise for his new releases.
Either way, Black Butter Records have definitely hit the jackpot with Leo Stannard, and we can’t wait to hear what he has to bring next.
Recently there has been three particular songs that I just can’t get enough of. These three gems have been stuck on repeat on my iPod for the past few months and they just need sharing with the world! I can’t believe that more people haven’t heard these beauties, so I hope you fall in love with them just as quickly and as deeply as I did.
Fat Freddy’s Drop – Ernie
This song is first on my list for so many reasons! It’s such a beautiful cinematic song that I can’t help but picture it as the soundtrack to a bar scene in a James Bond film: A Bond woman slipping down a set of stairs in a sultry red dress and perching beside a bright-eyed Bond with a Martini in hand. There’s a subtle mixture of genres in this song that, with soulful vocals set to a reggae beat, bring such a bright sense of originality. I was just transfixed after my first listen!
Charlie Cunningham – Lights Off
This sweet acoustic number has such a raw edge to it that makes it feel so much different to others of its genre. Cunningham has a natural talent at creating catchy yet unique melodies that stick in your head like the smell of your best friend’s house. I fell completely in love with the tone of this stunning song as soon as I heard it and I can’t wait until people start to pay attention to this incredible songwriter!
Snowmine – Let Me In
This song may be an older track, having being released in 2011, yet it has a timeless quality to it that I just adore! Yes I have been listening to in almost every day for four years. Snowmine create such beautifully upbeat and atmospheric tracks that make such perfect road trip soundtracks. I can’t wait for a summer day when I’m riding along in a car filled with friends who all adore this song, with the wind in my hair and these lyrics blaring out of the open car windows. They have recently released their debut album, Dialects and it’s well worth a listen!
So there is a small insight into the three songs that circulate round my head all day every day- I hope you love them just as much as I do!