Temple Sessions – ChrisCooperBand

After a short break, our Belwood’s own acoustic showcase the Temple Sessions has made a glorious return! We were joined by the brilliant ChrisCooperBand for a couple of tracks, as well as a hilarious game of Superfight. Here’s the first video from the session, and be sure to subscribe to our YouTube Channel to keep up-to-date with our other forthcoming videos.

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Top Tracks: Emma’s Lounge – Gimme Yer Love

It takes a mere few seconds for it to register that you’re in for a fun ride with ‘Gimme Yer Love’. With opening keys that sound like something straight out of a carnival, this latest track from North Carolina natives Emma’s Lounge appeals to your sense of childlike innocence and encourages you to lose your inhibitions and enjoy the moment. Taken from their new album Confluence out 12th October, this funky number boasts an irresistible chorus, glowing melodies and an unwavering whirl of positive energy. The band have truly thrown everything they’ve got at this track, and the end result sounds like Haim operating on overdrive. A song this exuberant and infectious must be the product of a secret lab dedicated to creating the most danceable groove imaginable, it’s the only logical explanation for a song so full of life and unreservedly joyous.

Top Tracks: Will Bowes – Mad at the World

What with the current state of the world, with all its fear, hatred and division, I envisioned that there would be a rise in angry protest music. While that has been the case in some circles, others have chosen to follow a different path. Despite its name, ‘Mad at the World’ is not an angry song, instead it follows the wise words of Marvin Gaye: “only love can conquer hate”. To that end, Canadian artist and actor Will Bowes shares a moving and heartfelt message with this stunningly soulful piano ballad. Inspired by the recent attacks in Toronto, ‘Mad at the World’ is a song about being the change you want to see in the world. Promoting love and togetherness, remaining optimistic in the face of unrest and uncertainty and standing up for what really matters in life.

Top Tracks: The Lavender Scare – Buried Behind Monet

It’s not all that long since that I was admiring the vaudevillian theatricality of The Lavender Scare’s previous single, and now they are back to show a whole other side to their sound. This LA based band formed from a shared love of Radiohead, and that influence is clear and present throughout as ‘Buried Behind Monet’ would sound right at home on Hail To The Thief. The downcast soaring guitar tone, blaring out like an air-raid siren, creates an ever-present tension that sets the scene for the foreboding world the song depicts. The unrelenting march of the rhythm section and piano sounds determined and defiant against the bleak backdrop, particularly when paired with the bittersweet riffs ringing out. This darker side to The Lavender Scare sounds like a different band entirely, and any band that can change their colours so convincingly is one to pay close attention to, as you never know what else they may have up their sleeve.

Top Tracks: SAHARAS – Shake My Fever

There’s power in names, sometimes names can reveal more than you think. Take the latest single from Windsor based band SAHARAS, which shimmers like a mirage in the desert, calling out to some something deep within to lure you in closer. Reminiscent of Foals at their very best, ‘Shake My Fever’ immediately grabs you with its danceable groove and bright inviting melodies. The psychedelic air that pervades this track makes it feel like the soundtrack to some vibrant fever dream. Mixing enticing indie vibes with a dash of surreal dream pop, SAHARAS are on to a winning formula here. Much like the simply stunning single artwork, the song is for the most part real and grounded, but is aglow with a fantastical haze that makes the whole thing that bit more magical.

Interview: Caleb Kopta

caleb koptaThough album releases have been a little inconsistent thus far this year, 2018 has been proving to be the strongest year for singles since this site started. Some of the best examples have come from Pennsylvania based artist Caleb Kopta and his synth tinged Americana, evoking the likes of Ryan Adams and Bear’s Den. His latest track ‘Anything’ is the kind of song that you could look back on one day as an important part of the soundtrack to the best days of your life. I had a quick chat with him about how his enthralling Americana sound came about and where it may lead him next: Continue reading

Top Tracks: Kane Miller – All We Need

Sometimes the simplest songs can be the most moving, and this latest track from Canadian singer/songwriter Kane Miller is a prime example. There’s no need for big flashy production as the song’s powerful message speaks for itself: “all we are is all we need”. When times are tough, such as when going through a breakup, sometimes all we can do is scrape together enough inner strength to see a new day. This is reflected beautifully in the stripped back video of Kane and his guitar in a worn down old room, with just a single lamp to fend off the darkness. It’s not pretty to struggle on when everything feels like it’s crashing down, but it’s still important to cling on to what small joys and little victories you can to keep going, so that you can see brighter days further down the line.

Top Tracks: Edward and Jane – Hold Your Own

I’ll let you into a little secret: no one has a clue what they’re doing. We’re all facing our own demons, and we all struggle to maintain this facade and convince the world that we actually have our shit together. All too often we look up to those that bottle everything up and present their life as some perfect bubble, when really we should take inspiration from those that don’t shy away from their problems. Just think how better life would be if we were brave enough to tear all our walls down and be there to support the people we care about, rather than pretend we’re strong all on our own. That’s the kind of loving community depicted in this new single from Edward and Jane, taken from their upcoming EP Too Early To Tell out 28th September. Recalling the likes of The Lumineers with their blend of classic Americana and contemporary pop hooks, ‘Hold Your Own’ offers gorgeous melodies, inspiring lyrics and a glimpse of a better world.

Top Tracks: Larry And His Flask – This Remedy

Oregon based band Larry And His Flask are back with their first new music in five years with ‘This Remedy’, the title track of their forthcoming album out 12th October. With the soft acoustic intro of the first 30 seconds I can picture walking alone through golden fields beneath a glorious sunset. When the spirited mandolin and banjo, and the uplifting harmonies, burst onto the scene breathing new life into the song, suddenly you’re no longer alone. That empty field is now the site of some joyous celebration with everyone that you hold dear. This is a song that’s made for sharing, the kind of song that feels as though it’s been passed down for generations. There’s an age-old magic here made to bring people together and put a smile on every face. Mixing rollicking gypsy folk with a dash of swing, ‘This Remedy’ is the perfect cure for whatever is bringing you down.

Top Tracks: Valley Maker – A Couple Days

If you could capture the sensation of daydreaming in a single song, this would be it. Mixing introspective indie with a dash of Americana, this latest track from Seattle based singer/songwriter Austin Crane, aka Valley Maker, carries a subdued yet cinematic feel. Taken from his forthcoming album Rhododendron out 12th October, ‘A Couple Days’ recalls the likes of Manchester Orchestra and The Amazing. Setting the perfect mood for the indrawn autumn nights that will soon be upon us, it carries a soft spoken melancholy that is tinged with a faint glimmer of hope. This song feels like taking an evening road trip when life gets a bit too much. Like leaving the world behind for a while and retreating to a quiet space, all the while chasing the last slivers of the fading sun on the horizon.