folklore // embodied

Honestly, I think I’m in love with Taylor Swift.

I don’t know if she set out to release arguably the best album of her career, but in my opinion, that’s just what she did.

I also don’t know if I’m the best person to be making statements like that because aside from her singles and a few tracks here and there I’ve rarely been an active Taylor Swift listener in the past, but damn, she did a good thing with folklore.

I think more than just her music, I’ve been super invested in her career. The shit show she went through with Kanye that kind of ruined one of the best moments of her life, which also subsequently spiraled into this whirlwind of a series of episodes that just plagued a huge portion of her career, then losing ownership of all of her masters and essentially having to start from scratch, the girls been through it. I think there’s so much she’s had to deal with, and she’s still managed to have a long, successful career. Gal must be tired.

 

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But on to folklore.

Like I said, I think I’m in love. This entire record is just so beautifully nostalgic and haunting, I genuinely wish I could go back to the moment I listened to the entire album for the first time so I could experience those feelings again.

I’m sure you’ve read one hundred and one reviews of this album already, because in keeping with my character I’m a little behind on this, so I’m just gonna share with you some of my favourite tracks from the record.

 


 

the 1
Come on. This song. So beautiful. The words, which are obviously just as strong throughout the entire album, just make it so simple and powerful. It’s so gentle, but there’s so much emotion in this one song.

my tears ricochet
My favourite song. Hands down. There’s so much anger and authenticity in this one song alone. Side note; I highly suggest you do not listen to this song for the first time while going on your daily walk because you will end up crying in public and it’s not a good look. ‘And if I’m dead to you, why are you at the wake?’ ‘You know I didn’t have to, want to haunt you, but what a ghostly scene.’ ‘You wear the same jewels, that I gave you, when you bury me.’ Come. On. Come. On. My jaw visibly dropped several times throughout this song just listening to the words Taylor was singing. Shivers every time.

seven
If I had my way, this song would be the main title motif for a modern gothic YA film, and the big build up would be playing while the main protagonist is running through the woods, with this huge looming countryside mansion in the background, after they come to a mad realisation. That’s if I had my way. That’s all I’m saying.

mad woman
Imagine thinking Taylor Swift would allow anyone to have the last word when it came to losing her masters and being taken advantage of by music industry heavy-weights. I feel like this song is Taylor’s response to that entire situation, and even the way she consistently gets portrayed in the media. It’s just so hauntingly cathartic and emotional. ‘Every time you call me crazy, I get more crazy, what about that?’. I think this is my second favourite song on the album. It’s so strong, so forceful in it’s tone, but so gentle and alluring at the same time.

epiphany
So many layers to this record. I saw so many people talking about how this song was maybe a nod to healthcare workers and front-liners during COVID and I could find no better meaning for such a beautiful song. It’s so melancholy, but suitably so.

 


 

This entire record sounds like you’re listening to the old Taylor Swift after she’s lived a life and experienced a million things, which I guess it is and you are. Sonically, it’s what I feel Taylor Swift was meant to be making, not that her past albums or singles have been bad in the slightest, rather that she embodies this record far more naturally in my opinion.

 

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I could listen to this album for days. Not gonna lie, I have been.

I’d love to know your thoughts on the album – what’s your favourite track?

x

Priya

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Welcoming Yebba Into Your Life

Sometimes I remember that Yebba exists and I forget how to act. Then I remember that there are people out in there in the world who never knew Yebba to begin with and I’m extremely upset and sad about that instead.

I feel like it should be a cardinal sin to be unaware of this woman’s existence on Earth, and that’s a hill I will happily die on.

It’s hard to accurately articulate just how much I love Yebba, and just how incredible this woman is. It’s also stupidly hard to fathom how underrated she is and how little credit she gets for doing the things she does.

It’s like that woman has vocal chords made of pure gold.

There’s one song of her’s, that I think I’ve been returning to on YouTub, minimum six or seven times a month, for the last two years. Two years this video has been ingrained in my brain. Don’t even get me started on the fact that I even bothered to attempt singing this song only in the last three months for fear of even trying to touch Yebba’s performance.

Another disaster; this song isn’t on Spotify or Apple Music. You should sure know how much that means to me. Lil old me, who holds Spotify to a somewhat religious standard, has been heading to YouTube voluntarily, just to listen to this song.

I don’t know if there’s a single time yet where I’ve watched this performance, without crying. Try it out for yourself.

 


 

 


 

There is something so guttural and raw about this song, I can’t fathom how so much emotion can be conveyed the way Yebba does. Everything about this performance is so authentic and rare, and I constantly find myself holding my breath for a large majority of the song.

You can’t help but be in awe of this woman. I mean, come on.

 

x

Priya

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Nitecaller // Space Memories

Hello boys and girls, hope you’re well.

It’s always a pleasure sharing brand new music that you thoroughly enjoy, but when it’s one of your own friends? Ten times better.

Today we’re gonna be talking about Space Memories, a surprise album drop by Melbourne producer and musician, Nitecaller.

Drawing on inspiration from artists like Flying Lotus, Jon Hopkins and Bonobo, Nitecaller’s sound is constantly shifting and evolving and adapting to meet the new levels of experimentation and discovery he’s constantly reaching with his music.

Jarrod Hambleton, the name behind Nitecaller, has already been making his own moves as a musician, playing guitar and bass in numerous bands, working as a producer for other musicians (including your gal) and making beautiful soundscapes for the art installations he’s been a part of creating.

 

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Space Memories was dropped at the end of June with essentially no promotion or marketing, and it’s humble release is what, in my opinion, made the record so beautiful and that much more appreciated.

The 10-track instrumental album brings together a blend of ethereal lo-fi guitar tones and ambient synths. For me, it was like a new wave version of Albatross by Fleetwood Mac, one of my favourite songs, mixed with the synth-y sounds and tones that I’ve come to find synonymous with Jarrod’s music and his releases as Nitecaller.

It’s incredibly minimal, but each sound has it’s own intention and place within each song, which makes everything you hear that much more beautiful and purposeful.

12:55 is undoubtedly my favourite track, as I’ve let him know, for how rhythmically melodic the way it flows is, and the way Nitecaller manages to create a innate sense of movement in a little under 3 minutes. 12:35 is also a favourite, just for how much the melody and the guitar tone lends itself to the indie lo-fi genre, but also builds upon itself as the song progresses.

If you’re on the lookout for some new music to meditate to or put on in the background as you go about your business on a quiet Sunday morning, Space Memories is the move, I promise you.

You can find Nitecaller’s Spotify page HERE and you can listen to the album HERE.

 

x

Priya

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Courtesy Of: Antzz

Hello boys and girls, welcome to another post!

Today’s post, as you can tell by the title is a Courtesy Of, a favourite around these parts. I get family, friends, musicians and creators to share their top ten favourite songs of the moment, and we all get to discover some new music together!

Today’s delivery of music is brought to you courtesy of Christchurch-based producer, Antzz. Remember a little while back when I said New Zealand had some of the best undiscovered music in the world?

Keep that in mind.

Before we get into Antzz’s top ten songs at the moment, let’s dive into his own music, more specifically, his debut EP,  Get to You, which he released at the start of this month. Y’all know how I feel about RnB, pop-RnB and everything in between, and Antzz brings all of that and more into his own blend of synthesizers, beautifully nostalgic harmonies, smooth vocals and elite production value. I can’t begin to tell you how many times I’ve listened to the first single, Player 1 since I first heard it. The rest of the EP is just as nostalgic and filled to the brim with beautiful lyrics that match the production perfectly.

 

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You can find Antzz on Spotify HERE. Player 1 is definitely one of my favourites from the EP. I mean, once you listen to the song, I’m sure all of you who know me will know while I’m so excited about the single! If you’ve kept up with my 365//2020 playlist, you’ll most definitely find it has a spot on there…

That said, this is a courtesy of post, and just as exciting is getting into some of Antzz’s inspirations and favourite songs right now!

So. many. favourites. 

I was super excited when Antzz’s sent me his list, because as you’ll see soon enough, there’s so of my favourite artists on here and a bunch that I’m sure you’ll recognise from seeing them appear time and time again on the blog!

 


 

Let me know what you think!

Tevin Campbell – Can We Talk: Old school R&B will always be my favourite genre. Authentic, soulful rhythm and blues. This song has those elements of R&B all through it. And not to mention Tevin Campbell’s voice…next level!

Earth, Wind and Fire – After The Love Has Gone: One of my favourite singers ever Maurice White. Does a great job and singing that smooth iconic sound that is Earth, Wind and Fire in After the Love Has Gone. Plus, there is no hiding behind production/mixing in these songs. It’s all talent and authentic music played by the best musicians ever.

Kendrick Lamar – Money Trees

Johnny Gill – My, My, My: Love the chords, beat and vocals in the song. I will almost always refer to this song I ever hit writers block. So many different and creative elements in this song whilst being so minimal.

Kirk Franklin – Love Theory: Although I don’t come from a religious background, Love Theory is no doubt a really well written piece of music. From the gospel choir to the piano progression, the groove to the synths, Love Theory just makes you wanna dance!

Maurice Moore – Little More: Great mix of old school with new school music. So undercover, but so good at the same time. Vocals are mixed in really nice and you can imagine a whole band playing the song as opposed to an over engineered sound in it. Lyrics are great and fit well with the melody.

Mac Ayres – Better: Fun upbeat song made by my favourite artist of this decade.

Mac Ayres – Summertime: So chill and relaxed. It’s so nice and isn’t over produced which seems to be prominent in every song on the radio. It also shocks me that this song is performed live. Crazy talented

Matt Corby – Miracle Love: Matt Corby, the most diverse and talented singer in the world (in my opinion of course). This song really shows how amazing his vocals are. So minimal and raw.

Allen Stone – Sunny Days: Another one of my favourite singers. This song took a different sound compared to what we’re used to hearing from Allen Stone. Has a nice beat and you can never go wrong when adding Allen Stone’s voice to anything.

 


 

Make sure you show Antzz some support – you know I’ll be getting around his music as soon as he releases some more! You can find him on Instagram, FaceBook and SoudCloud!

 
 
 

x

Priya

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Giveon // Define RnB

Sometimes there are just moments when you hear an artist for the first time and you have to collect your jaw up from the floor.

This being one of them.

Recently I’ve heard so many people really dragging on RnB, comparing the classic old school RnB to now, and talking about the lack of quality RnB music being shared. And to that I say, please sit yourself down and shut up.

There are so many incredible RnB artists brimming below the surface of mainstream music and media, and I think they’re defining a new era of RnB. I even have an entire playlist dedicated to these artists and their music, which you can find HERE. One of those artists for me personally at the moment, is Giveon. Since discovering the baritone earlier in the year, I’ve had his music on replay, whether it’s his album TAKE TIME or his feature on Chicago Freestyle, one of the tracks from Drake’s latest album, Dark Lane Demo Tapes.

 

 

Giveon is the definition of ‘tall, dark and handsome’, but like sonically it checks out too?? If that makes sense?? Let me know if it doesn’t, because I totally understand. 

I think I fell in love with how much space his voice alone fills up, and how it swells and ebbs throughout all his songs. He seamlessly moves from moments of simmering just below the surface and kind of holding back, before transitioning to singing with his entire chest, which never fails to hit you in the gut. 

The first song of his that I fell in love with immediately was THE BEACH. It’s got that beautiful, soulful guitar tone that y’all know I just love. Add in a super sultry bass line and Giveon’s baritone voice, and you’re in heaven. LIKE I WANT YOU is another favourite of mine. It’s super simple and beautiful, and it’s my favourite song of his to just sit back and let the lyrics wash over me. There’s more of that guitar in there, plus a plethora of ethereal, ambient harmonies that just fill the space so beautifully. 

 

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Of all of Giveon’s catalogue, I think FAVORITE MISTAKE is my top pick. The flow in the melody was so intriguing to me when I first heard it, which is why I wasn’t immediately as obsessed with it as I currently am. But the chorus hit, and I was hooked. I promise you, this is a song that’ll genuinely have you floating above the clouds. Grab a glass of wine, throw this song on repeat and you’re guaranteed to vibe the hell out. It’s my go to. 

Let me know if you check out Giveon and his music. I’ve been so in love with everything he has to offer since first discovering him! If you do let me know what you think in the comments! 

 

x

Priya

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Tom Misch & Yussef Dayes // What Kinda Music

Hello boys and girls – hope you’re all well!

It’s no secret that I’m a huge Tom Misch fan, and if you’ve somehow missed the many features he’s made on this blog over the past couple of years…I don’t know what to tell you.

His latest project, has been one I’ve been anticipating very eagerly, a collaboration album with one of my favourite drummers and South-London artists, Yussef Dayes, What Kinda Music.

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It’s genuinely filled to the brim with incredibly intricate tunes, that just ebb and flow so naturally. As Tom mentions in the album documentary I’ve linked below, quite a few of the songs were created through jam sessions, without a clear cut song structure or outline, which I think only allows more room for each music to really, really shine.

Yussef is, for obvious reasons, one of my favourite drummers and producers at the moment, and this album really shows off just how technically skilled he is. The drumming on this album adds a completely new element to Tom’s already incredible instrumentation and production, and the fact that it’s all live tracked in a studio during these jam sessions gives the entire album a really authentic and raw feeling, despite how clean and crisp every sound is.

Festival, the second song on the album is one of my favourites. It’s super ambient, while still allowing for Yussef’s drumming to cut right through. Tom’s vocals serve as more of a synth at times, but he jumps back and forth between these long drawn out notes and super rhythmic singing that meets Yussef’s energy in a really understated way.

 

Last 100 was the song I added to my playlists straight away on my first listen to the album. It’s just got so much packed into it, but everything has a moment to stand out. The drums are so clean on this particular track and just provide a really nice energy and framework for Tom to swim in with his guitar. Add in the super catchy hook, and it’s just the tastiest song on the track for me. Really gets the head bobbing if we’re being honest.

Kyiv is the last song from the album I wanna mention. It’s beautiful. So much space within one song, and it all fits together like a puzzle piece. I love the fact that while there are some songs with vocals and lyrics on this album, there are also a bunch of instrumental songs, this being one of the highlights for me. It was one of the four singles that were released for this album, and it’s definitely my favourite of that selection. I personally think it’s a great taster of the whole album, and both Tom and Yussef really pull together on this track beautifully.

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I’ve had a Tom Misch post sitting in my drafts for months now, close to a year, but this will have to do for now, because as much as I love Tom and his entire discography of solo work, I’m currently obsessed with this album and I reckon it’s gonna be on high rotation for a while.

If you check out the album, let me know what you think! I’d love to hear your thoughts, especially if you’ve never dived into any Tom Misch or Yussef Dayes before – this is a great taste of it for sure.

 

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x

Priya

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Audrey Mika // Just Friends

Hello boys and girls!

I hope you’re all well and thriving! Today’s post is gonna be a little review of the latest single released by long time You Should Hear favourite, Audrey Mika, Just Friends. 

I remember when Audrey was a lil YouTube singer, posting covers, singing into a plastic pink microphone, and now she’s one of the Vevo’s Ones To Watch, she’s been on tour, she’s collabed with KYLE, SAYGRACE and Tate McRae, and she’s killing it overall.

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Audrey’s always had an incredible voice. It’s like velvet and she always hits the right spot. So it was a given that the song was gonna be good. But boys and girls, I didn’t anticipate it to be this good.

She’s kinda on the save wave as Dua Lipa’s recent music on this track, so if you’re getting around that I can guarantee you’ll love this single. There’s so much bounce and energy in this song, something that sometimes I feel could be added to her other music, but this single is definitely earning itself a top spot on the list of favourites for me.

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I love how spacey and synth-heavy this track is, plus the chorus is a major ear-worm – you’ll have it stuck in your head for ages, I promise. Also, the vocals in this song go next level. She goes off, especially in that sweet spot, the end of the bridge, going into the last hook. I got so excited hearing it, and it just tied everything together perfectly.

I think I vibe with Audrey so much because of how wholesome and raw she’s stayed since her YouTube career has developed into a career that’s been backed and supported by a record label like RCA. She’s stayed humble and authentic, she’s still got one of her best friends as part of her team and she’s constantly interacting with her fans. I reckon that’s why hearing genuinely incredible music come out from her makes you more inclined to enjoy it and support her. That, and the music slaps.

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x

Priya

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Thank You Lennon Stella

Hello boys and girls, hope you’re well and thriving!

The time has finally arrived for Lennon Stella to share with us an album that I feel like I’ve spent years waiting for. Lennon was amongst the first few musicians I included in my playlists I shared on here, she featured quite a few times, and it’s been so fun to watch her grow, touring with The Chainsmokers, featuring on songs with artists like Liam Payne, touring and just over all killing it.

She’s come a long way from singing Happy Birthday to Harry Styles and using empty butter containers to perform The Cup Song with her little sister Maisy (who’s also a brilliant artist in her own right, and features on the album).

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This album, Three. Two. One. is like a culmination of all the work Lennon’s put in over the last few years. The opening track, ‘Much Too Much’ is such a great introduction to the rest of the record, welcoming the synth heavy production, mixed in with her angelic, atmospheric vocals that she’s become know for.

Through tracks like ‘Pretty Boy’, ‘Older Than I Am’, ‘Weakness’, which features her little sister Maisy, and ‘Goodnight’, this record covers so much ground. It’s like Lennon’s stretched herself as much as she can to encapsulate as many aspects of her life into this one record, while remaining so authentic and true to the nature of all these songs and how beautifully they’re constructed.

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So any favourites?

Personally, Golf On TV makes me want to spontaneously combust in to flames, while also dissolving into a puddle of tears, so there’s that. There’s so much, lyrically, in this album that makes. my. heart. sing. The writer’s on this song did a phenomenal job, and the chorus consistently gets stuck in my head for hours on end, which is really not a problem.

Then there’s Older Than I Am, which they had no right putting right after GOTV, because it’s equally as beautiful but so emotionally charged and heavy. Again, the lyrics on this album are just another level, they take you to outer space in the best way possible.

There’s so much light and shade in this album, and having Lennon’s ethereal vocals laced throughout each song just brings them all together on this record and everything just makes sense. Everything fits, and the album as a whole feels like one big puzzle, with all the songs being the little pieces if that makes sense??

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I don’t know man, I’m just so happy this album is finally here. 13 beautiful tracks, I can’t really fault this album at all, though I’m not really one to share an album if I can fault it. If you’re a Lennon Stella fan, you’ll love this through and through because it’s everything that makes Lennon’s music so unique and enjoyable to listen to wrapped up in one record, and if you’ve never listened to Lennon before, this is the perfect first listen.

x

Priya

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Hooked // Church & AP

Hello! Welcome back to my little corner of the internet (suss the new look if you’re on Reader xxx)

Hope you’ve all been good and are well. Today’s post is one that has been coming since probably the middle of January, when I first discovered the duo I’m about to share with you all.

If you read my January Tunes as well as my February Tunes, and come to think of it…my March Tunes, which you definitely should check out if you haven’t already, you might have picked up on the little obsession I currently have, with a young duo from New Zealand, known as Church & AP.

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Compromised of of Elijah Manu and Albert Purcell, Church & AP having been on a steady rise since 2018. They released an album, TEETH, in 2019, literally packed with bangers. They also released Cathedral / All Purpose in 2019 as well, so it’s not like these guys are short of stuff to prove just how hard they work.

Alladat was their first release in 2018, a fun lil spin on Sweet Escape by Gwen Stefani, and I may has well have lost my mind when I heard it. So clean. Everything just fits together super well. I’ve always been honestly upfront about how much I struggle to get into rap that isn’t American, namely Australian rap, but for some reason, New Zealand rap just does it for me, and a lot of it is down to these guys. They’re introducing a whole new audience to the rap and hip hop music that’s coming out of New Zealand, and there’s plenty of it.

Roulette is definitely my favourite song of theirs, purely for how heavy and hard that bass line goes in, and how catchy the opening chorus is. I also love how smart they are with their lyrics?? It’s not overly explicit, but every time you listen to it, it’s like you discover some new quip or clever remark and I love it.

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The song that really propelled them to the level of success they’ve currently reached is a track called Ready Or Not, which was the highest Shazaam’d song in New Zealand when it was released, which is a feat. Listening to it, I have no doubt why. For me, Church & AP are like a harder, slightly grimier version of BROCKHAMPTON, with a New Zealand spin on it. It’s a super unique sound, and I’m yet to come across an artist or group who just body their music so confidently and entirely.

One of their most recent releases, Aston Martin is also a track and a half. It’s a great example of how diverse these guys are, with the Latin influences dripping off this track’s production, yet still remaining true to the Church & AP sound. The hook is stupidly catchy, and it had my jaw on the floor the second I heard the opening bar.

Honorable mentions have to go to their latest single, War Outside, as well as Dandelion, moneytalk and Dera Meelan’s remix of Fire Sale with deadforest. All favourites. Hands down. It’s hard to pick.

 

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I’ll let you pick your favourite for yourself. You’ve heard me rambling about these boys for the last three months, so it’s probably time you checked them out. You can find their Spotify page HERE, their BandCamp HERE and their Instagram page HERE. Let me know what you think.

x

Priya

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SIX60 // An Album Review

Hello friends!

Today’s post is a short album review and run-down of one of my favourite bands for the last couple of years, Six60. If you’ve been here for the longest time, you may remember I did one of my first ever blog posts about the New Zealand band which you can read HERE, and they’ve only continued to get bigger and bigger. I even got to see their set at the Byron Bay BluesFest last year in April, and it was easily one of my favourite sets from the entire festival.

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They released their third self-titled album in November last year, and while I’ve heard a few songs from the album here and there, I never sat down to listen to the entire record completely.

Social distancing and isolation has meant that a lot of us have plenty of spare time to do what we want to do, and for me that’s meant listening to so much more music and exploring artists in depth, both old and new. While I was doing a super deep clean of my Spotify account, I came across the album, just sitting there, waiting for me to dive in. And dive in I did.

The entire album sonically, is such a trip. It just goes to places that I personally never felt through the last two albums, as much as I love them. One of my favourite things about Six60 is how effortlessly they blend pop, rock, reggae and funk, and then sprinkle a bunch of Maori and Kiwi influences and instrumentation to make a super unique sound.

 

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The opening track Never Enough is super pop-rock centric, but there are a few elements of reggae in the bass line, and I feel like you add a vocal performance like Matiu Walters into the mix there’s always an element of soul involved too.

Please Don’t Go had my jaw on the floor just because of how different it is?? But in the best possible way. If there’s a song on the album that just kicks down the door and really gets in your face musically, I think it’s this one, and it’s not super over the top about it. It’s all in the bass and drums for me.

It feels like I’ll be mentioning practically every song on the album but I also vibe heavy with Long Gone, just because it’s such a gentle but firm ‘stuff you’ kinda song. It picks up so beautifully in the bridge and towards the end of the song the vocal arrangement genuinely gives me chills, regardless of how subtle it may be.

Tomorrow is another one of my favourites purely because of how beautiful it is. Matiu’s voice nearly made me cry the first time I listened to it. It’s got such a deep-rooted message, with a bunch of island elements added into the mix, and it makes me super nostalgic for some of the music I used to listen to when I was younger with my family. There’s a very low-key Bob Marley aesthetic to it, but it’s done so tastefully, and all the extra sounds they’ve added into the song just bring everything together so sweetly.

Raining shows up a bit closer to the end of the album, but it’s definitely one of my top three songs hands down. Melodically, this one is one of those tracks that just sits so comfortably in it’s reggae/island pocket, and it really gets the head bob going, which is why I think I love it so much. Such a chiller to listen to around the house or on a drive. The bass is also super prominent in this one, and the chorus is perfect for a sing-a-long. It’s just a super warm song.

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Then there’s Sundown which is genuinely one of the funkiest songs on the album for me. It starts off with a super gentle ukulele which made me grin the first second I ever listened to the song, but then there’s these added little nuances and sounds that start kicking in to steer it more towards a bit of a funk/pop type of style. There’s a reggae element that mixes into it as well, but it’s a super unique sounding song, especially in regards to the rest of the album.

I think Bitter End may be my favourite track on the record. Again, they hit you with a super crisp ukulele which always warms me to the core. One of my favourite things about Six60 is their lyrics, and this song is an amazing example. They have a way of forming each line in a way that conveys what they’re trying to say so simply and without having to make anything complicated, but each lyric still hits you with the same power and intent. I love it. Big fan. 10 out of 10.

x

Priya

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