Spring into Sound
Rom-coms, riverboats, and a doomsday party anthem for the season of showers and flowers.
Photo by Juja Han on Unsplash
With the equinox behind us and the sun in Aries, the music of the season is ready to push energy levels into overdrive. Whether you hoist anchor and set adrift with Violet and the Undercurrents, pound out a deep bass groove with Elephant Trees, or kick back and smoke some trees with Melissa Etheridge, you’re bound to enjoy the ride.
Manchester UK-based Elephant Trees are stomping onto the scene with a debut album in April. Along the way, they reached the finals of Fender’s Unsigned Artist of the Year competition as well as playing in several Pride events.
About the new single “4100” (four-one-hundred), lead singer Martha Phillips says, “It’s so easy to get comfortable wallowing in dark places. I wanted to depict the juxtaposition between that comfort and the need to bury it under various crutches. It’s different in style to our earlier music but I think that comes from a place of growth. We’re moving away from straight up angry rock because we’re not angry teenagers anymore, we’re coming at things from a different angle with a different perspective.”
You can keep up with all of the announcements, and more importantly buy tickets here.
Mark your calendars as Melissa Etheridge drops her latest album The Medicine Show on April 12. Featuring new single “Faded by Design,” the record was produced by John Shanks (Keith Urban, Bon Jovi, Kelly Clarkson) and was recorded largely live in studio.
The Kansas-bred artist tackles the themes of renewal, reconciliation, and healing on the upcoming album, which is sure to be on our playlists well into the summer. About the album, Etheridge says the name The Medicine Show “puts straight up, front and center, that this is about health, wellness, cannabis, this new thought.”
Tour dates and more can be found on her website, here.
Violet and the Undercurrents
Keeping it close to the heartland, Columbia, Missouri favorites Violet and the Undercurrents are making a splash with The Captain.
A musician since the age of two and a performer since the age of nine, Violet Vonder Haar grew up in rural Missouri with her riverboat captain father. After forming the band with wife Phylshawn Johnson, she began reflecting on the idea of an album formed around a captain’s journey.
Check out the first in a series of short films, The Captain, Part 1 below.
Imagine a rad early-aughts movie soundtrack and you’ve got Never Have I Ever, a new record by Maddie Ross due out May 10.
“We really tried to think of each song as more of a movie score. The lyrics aren’t describing the scene that is happening, they’re just a perfect backdrop. Never Have I Ever is inspired by a variety of movies, but the story it tells follows a plot of its own. In our wildest fantasies, someone would write an adorable girl-meets-girl rom-com, and use the entire album as a score,” says Ross.
The album was made solely by women and even produced and co-written by Ross’ girlfriend Wolfy.
Listen to “Tell Your Friends” off the upcoming release.
Londoner Katey Brooks had an interesting childhood to say the least. Growing up in a cult, she cites music as a refuge.
"It was a very chaotic upbringing, full of some pretty colourful and sometimes unsavoury, characters,” says Brooks. “But when I sang, I felt free and connected. For as long as I can remember, it’s been my way of getting what I need to say out.”
Brooks has had her share of heartache and it lends a vulnerability and depth to her songwriting.
"When I was 22 my mum got ill and she died. And then not long after that, my lifelong best friend went missing and she also died. That’s definitely had an effect on the course of my life and my writing. I guess I’m lucky that I have songs that I can write, as a means to deal with things.”
In “Never Gonna Let Her Go,” Brooks speaks honestly about her romantic life.
“In my most recent work I’ve finally been able to sing directly about women instead of using the mysterious ‘you’. I’m a private person in a lot of ways and I never wanted to be a poster girl for anything,” she says. “But a few years ago I just thought screw it; I want to sing completely honestly. It felt like a weight lifted.”
God-Des, half of the hip-hop duo God-Des and She, who released her first solo track “The Weekend” last summer, is back with new tunes. The single is “Wasting Time” and she is lamenting the amount of time it takes to achieve big goals. Who can’t relate to that?
If the latest news cycle has got you down, “Come on Doom, Let’s Party,” may be just the soundtrack for you. Emily Wells is a composer, producer, and singer and her album This World Is Too ____ For You is out now.
“I am interested in the relationship between the history of the AIDS crisis and our current climate crisis and what “silence = death” means in this context,” she says. “I wish to learn from the activists of ACT UP, the way they took science and knowledge in hand and produced clear solutions that were implemented on a federal level and the way their actions of protest often had a sense of humor, were alive with creativity yet were simultaneously gravely profound,” Wells says.
Hopefully the recent equinox brought everyone a sense of balance, if not, then it has never been a better time to turn up the music and tune out – if only for a few moments.
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