In slightly amending that most famous Game of Thrones tropes, it can be said that upon viewing the video to Patrick Park’s “Dust and Mud”, directed by JT Gurzi, it is more than obvious that summer is coming. Sunny, understated electric guitar, breezy drumming, and Park’s affable vocals come together to form a sun-kissed tune, one ideal for cruising along beach.
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Songwriters such as Emily Wells have demonstrated the wonderful, eclectic things that can be done with a violin when brought into the mold of popular genres like electronic, indie, and pop. Few, if any, however, have the daring demonstrated by Hannah Thiem, who in her music draws on influences that span the entire globe, including the music of Scandinavia, the Middle East, and Eastern Europe. “The Finding,” the third single to be released from her upcoming EP BRYM, demonstrates this musical multiculturalism on many fronts. Thiem’s lyrics, captured in full by her gorgeous voice, are a mélange of “Icelandic, Roma-influenced, and partly invented” languages. The brooding, Massive Attack-esque mood of “The Finding” brings together Middle Eastern instrumentation and Eastern European melody. Thiem’s dazzling violin weaves haunting melodies atop the insistent electronic drumbeat. By the time the five minutes of this tune have run its course, one could say a kind of mystical journey has unfolded.
Pacifika‘s global beats have earned high praise from the likes of NPR and the Wall Street Journal and that’s likely to repeat with Amor Planeta. The new album ups the live instrumentation and tones down the electronics, whilst the band took a new approach of live jamming tunes into proper songs, which makes for a greater dynamicism.
Saul Conrad grew up in a musical family and was trained in classical music from a very early age, receiving formal training for some 20 years. That education informs his super melodic and harmonically complex songs, which feel like mini revelations in the age of cookie cutter top 40 pop music. You know that you’re dealing with a special artist when they reference Kierkegaard as an influence on their music.