[Folk] Marika Hackman – Drown

Marika Hackman
Marika Hackman
Drown

There is something about the way London artist Marika Hackman sings, it is not easily put into words but let me try my best. When this folk songstress opens her mouth a mix of depth and beauty escape and play delicately on your ears. Hackman has a deep, rich voice that meditates in your brain as she quietly sings dark yet realistic lyrics. Her latest single ‘Drown’ the first song off her forthcoming debut album ‘We Slept At Last’, continues to show the complexity of Hackman’s personal sound and what continues to set her apart from other singer-songwriters. Feel free to drown in this stunning song, it will leave you feeling at ease with life.

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[Synth Pop] PROM – My Line

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PROM
My Line

Sometimes all you need to end your night is a nice cup of hot vanilla chai, a cozy blanket, and a little PROM in the background to send you into a spiraling tunnel of pure, euphoric bliss. We’ve come to love everything there is about Gabe and Ella, and have been supporting them ever since their debut release with “Flickers”. Now that their Keeping Company EP is finally out and floating in the world, we had the joy of listening through each and every magical track.  We took to fancying every single song on the EP, but were captivated by the ear-enchanting number, “My Line”. Filled with their glorious  signature synths and flawless harmonies, PROM has distinguished themselves as innovative, artistic, and highly unique. As we sit here and enjoy our nightly cup of tea, we can’t help but close our eyes and lose ourselves in this soul-quenching track. The music Gods sure have graced us with this heavenly duo and all that they create. Despite them still not inviting us to Prom. Gabe and Ella are always going to have a special place in our ninja hearts from here on out. Well. what are you waiting for? The play button isn’t going to hit itself, so prepare to escape for the rest of the night and we’ll see you on the other side.

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[Indie] Coasts – A Rush of Blood

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Coastsband
A Rush Of Blood

One listen through “A Rush of Blood” will have you confirming the fact that Coasts are one of the next big things. Soon to follow other notable explosive indie rock acts such as Two Door Cinema Club and The 1975, this band is on a current trajectory to be heard in every corner of the world.

We’ve been on board with this Britol 5-piece since we first laid ears on their Paradise EP, and we can’t foresee any reason why our adoration won’t continue, even after their done crafting monster tunes.

Alright, enough gushing, let’s talk about the song at hand. In true Coasts’ fashion, “A Rush of Blood” boasts a true stadium-filling cinematic sound, carried by the powerful lead vocals. The production is on flawless, thanks in part to producers Mike Spencer (Rudimental/Alex Clare) and James Rushent (Does it Offend You Yeah), one which develops truly encapsulating sound. While the production is noteworthy, the instrumentals deserve their own moment in the spotlight, carrying this song from a drawn-out build-up to a surging crescendo of splashing cymbals, charging guitar chords, a driving bassline, and understated piano work. All of the aforementioned create the perfect backdrop for what drew us to this act in the first place: the bold, unrelentless lyrics that capture your emotions with ease.

This song is on their second full release EP, Rush of Blood. Released on the independent label Tidal Recordings, this outfit has recently signed to Capitol Records for the USA after being confirmed for some notable festivals.

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City Reign – Disappear [TMN PREMIERE]

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City Reign
Disappear (Official Audio)

The progression of the music scene is a funny thing, casually taking us along a path of discovering new genres and bands. Tastes tend to evolve as goes along this path, continually moving and evolving, while never forgetting our musical pasts.

Seeing as how I’m a bit older than most bloggers out there, a lot of my musical past is rooted around acts who adorned stages at Warped Tour. Having worked merch for a buddy’s band on said tour, I’ve often found myself gravitating to the likes guitar-centric, fast-paced, and heavier songs.

While the world has been focused on folksier indie rock, electronica, and ambient, the guitar is making a strong comeback, and Manchester based City Reign is a perfect example of this up-swinging trend. Fusing together dreamy, cinematic soundscapes with roaring percussion and intricate guitar work, “Disappear” is a far departure from the happy-go-lucky Apple commercial indie pop. And we’re pretty damn excited about that.

Maybe now it’s time, to close our eyes and disappear, make this all disappear!

On the heels of their recent single, “When You Got It All,” the band is back with this premiere. Boasting vocals that are somewhat reminiscent of Oasis, only much less calm, it’s delightfully dark and heavy. With an unrelenting surging energy, it’s no wonder these cats are garnering nods of approval from Steve Lamacq, Clash Magazine, Fake DIY, and many others.

Upcoming shows:
14 November – The Garage, Islington London
15 November – The Deaf Institute, Manchester

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[Nu-Disco/Synth-Pop] Penguin Prison – Calling Out

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Penguin Prison
Calling Out

Oh Chris Glover. Your lovelorn, Anglophilic, dreamy dance-pop and beautiful songwriting never fail to bring a smile and hip wiggle from us. Glover, who’s tenfold more renowned as his artist moniker Penguin Prison is back with another pop construed dance ditty, “Calling Out”. It’s been much too long since we’ve gotten an original from the crafty, 80′s driven producer, as we’ve seen Penguin Prison taking on remix duties for the likes of Maroon 5 & Youngblood Hawke, lending those beautiful vocal chords on tunes like RAC’s “Hollywood” and Viceroy’s “This Life”, as well as authoring shiny new covers of Lionel Richie & Sade; and “Calling Out” has certainly made up for the lack of solo tunes in the last few years. “Calling Out” rolls on a four-four disco kick drum, provocatively drippy synths and Glover’s extraordinary refrain to result in a worthy and welcome comeback single. The fact the tune ends with a frizzy guitar lead only sweetens the deal. The word is out that there will be another Penguin Prison LP in the near future, so we’ll keep you posted. Until then, enjoy “Calling Out” above.

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Catey Shaw – Outerspace [TMN VIDEO PREMIERE]

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Catey Shaw.
Outerspace

We spend so much time buried in emails, scanning from soundcloud link to soundcloud link , that we rarely get to see the more human side of the music industry. Even if we head out and catch a show, or interview a band at the venue, we don’t get to see all that goes into this tumultuous lifestyle, which should be chronicled and highlighted.

Today we’re that all up by bringing you an inside look at one of our favorite new artists, Catey Shaw, and her band-mates make their first trip to Canada. Shot and directed by SVA alumni Bryan Russell Smith, the video for “Outerspace” is a completely different take in comparison to his previous work with “Human Contact,” which was a more traditional pop-style music video. Today’s premiere goes the route of a tour diary, displaying the raw the often-quirky Shaw from two different debut performances, one in Toronto and one in Montreal.

Set to the playful percussion of bongo drums, and a repeating guitar lick, the video winds itself around the engaging structure of the song. Flirting back and forth with upbeat, groovy verses and dreamy choruses, we’re offered what life on the open road would be like, and what a fan gets to experience at a live performance.

The bad news? You’ll pry never get closer to touring with Catey Shaw than this video. The good news? You can catch this delightful indie pop act next week at one their three upcoming CMJ showcases below.
CMJ Showcases:
October 21 Marlin Room at Webster Hall for BalconyTV Showcase @ 7pm
October 23 Gibson Showroom @ 7pm
October 25 Spike Hill for Deli Mag Showcase @ 12am

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Jared Wohl – You Are [TMN PREMIERE]

JW YOU ARE EP ALBUM ART
Jared Wohl
You Are

We have the unique pleasure of hearing hundreds of stories a week. Hundreds of emails a day come across our screen, all of which are sharing a small piece of their life with us. Whether it be whimsical and light-hearted, dark and gloomy, or incredibly uplifting, we get a chance to hear more than just music. We get a chance to hear about people’s lives through their art. Today marks one of the more remarkable stories we’ve come across, as we take a deeper look into Jared Wohl.

Having previously worked with Wohl on his initial project, Farewell Luna, we had never known any of his backstory, until now. Eight months ago, this New Jersey native laid in the transplant unit at New York Presbyterian Hospital recovering from a traumatic surgery leaving him with only 35% of his liver. Just two years earlier, he had sat in the same hospital, undergoing extensive testing, which would reveal whether or not he could save his brother’s life. Cameron, Jared’s brother, has been living with a chronic, potentially fatal disease (Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis) for over a decade. The brothers soon realized that in addition to sharing the same birthday three years to the day, they would soon share something much more significant. On February 11th 2014, Jared successfully donated 65% of his liver to Cameron.

Going through a life experience like Jared did is sure to incite powerful life changes, which is why he has decided to reintroduce himself as a singer-songwriter, only this time, as himself. While he had a strong following under his previous moniker, the gravity of becoming a living organ donor, and inevitably saving his younger brother’s life, gave songwriting an entirely new meaning.

The title track for his new EP, which can be found on their upcoming documentary (trailer below), is premiering today here on The Music Ninja. Wohl once again reminds us of why we were drawn to him in the first place, effortlessly displaying his stunning vocal tone and range. Set to the backdrop of energetic percussion, some light and glowing guitar work, and a steady bassline “You Are” instantly hooks the listener in, commanding attention for the full five minute tune. While the focus on vocals is heavy in the beginning, the instrumentals ultimately catch up, leading way to a soulful outtro that leaves a lasting impression.

After you’ve listened through, take a moment to watch the trailer for the Wohl brother’s documentary below, which will ultimately shed light on their newly formed foundation, The Wave Set.

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