It’s time to celebrate not only the blog’s 6th birthday, but also the chance to say a wholehearted “fuck you!” as we finally leave 2020 behind. It’s been a deeply challenging year, and the road ahead is still rough and uncertain, but if there’s anything we can take away from our time in quarantine, it is learning to better appreciate the little things in life. Even a music industry left battered by the impact of Covid and incompetent governments has still been able to produce some incredible releases for us to cling on to. Before we put this crazy year in the rear view mirror, let’s take one last look back at the music that helped us through it all. Continue reading
The medium of choice for rising stars, an invaluable tool for up and coming artists, EPs are the oft overlooked lifeblood of the music industry. It’s always been our most hotly contested list as the wealth of great EPs often represents the very best and brightest new acts on the scene. In a music industry decimated by Covid-19 however, these artists are amongst those hardest hit. So as we reel off our favourite EPs from our least favourite year, if you stumble across a release that resonates with you, we ask that you do your bit to support the artists in whatever way you can. Continue reading
Simon Alexander – A Place to Call Home
We all feel a little lost sometimes, now more than ever. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by all the uncertainty that surrounds us. To be kept awake by the endless string of unanswered questions, to have no idea what kind of world awaits you tomorrow, and to be left directionless and just sleepwalking from one day to the next. Rather than search harder for meaning and stability, sometimes the best course of action is not to fight the current. Sometimes the only respite when feeling lost is choosing where to lose yourself; being able to shut out the world and dream of something better. That’s exactly the kind of escape offered by ‘Heading Nowhere’, the latest single from Swedish singer/songwriter Simon Alexander. Taken from his forthcoming debut album A Place Called Home, the airy folk arrangement, hazy ambient soundscapes and haunting harmonies transports you to idyllic dream world. The perfect blissful sanctuary from a world gone mad, a calm and comforting respite from the storms that rage both without and within all of us. Having already wowed us with his In The Rust EP at the beginning of the year, and now with this serene slice of his debut album, Simon is far from “heading nowhere”, instead he keeps on proving to be one of the most consistently brilliant songwriters in 2020.
A lot changes in a year. We take it in our stride as we’re so focused on the day to day, but if you really think about it you can look at your life from one season to the next and the contrast can be so stark that it’s almost like different people living in different worlds. The summers so lush and full of life that we welcome their warmth with open arms, cast our worries aside, and jam to music that’s bright and boisterous; the winters stark, sombre and unforgiving so that we retreat inside to escape the cold, and our thoughts too turn inward as we cling to music that is quiet and introspective. Each season a disparate chapter of a long and winding story, each passing year holding something new and leaving its mark on you.
Swedish singer/songwriter Simon Alexander embodies this idea in his new EP In The Rust. Lyrically the release often reflects on the passage of time, taking a nostalgic look back at years gone by through rose tinted glasses, and apprehensively pondering what fresh changes and challenges the years ahead have in store. Musically the four songs contained here are as rich and varied as the seasons. ‘Move Steady’ is an uplifting indie anthem packed to the brim with bright melodies, and the title track delights with its rustic folk arrangement and gorgeous harmonies. The smooth and joyous rhythm & blues of ‘Good Friends’ is just what the doctor ordered to banish the winter blues, and the soulful slow-burning closing track ‘Rain’ has some sublime guitar work and showcases Simon’s vocals at their very best. These four tracks really show just how wide-ranging his talents are, and I look forward to hearing what fresh delights he has in store further down the line.
Fans of Hozier, Gavin James, Ben Howard and Wilder Mind era Mumford & Sons should check out Simon’s new EP In The Rust out now.
We all have a touch of wanderlust in our youth. A thirst for adventure, a yearning for a change of scenery, a longing to see more of the world than just the same familiar patch we see every day. It’s easy to see the appeal, but the reality of seeking new endeavours often isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Swedish singer/songwriter Simon Alexander leads you down just such an uncertain path on his new single ‘Move Steady’, taken from his forthcoming EP In The Rust. Channeling a bit of Mumford & Sons’ Wilder Mind, this fine piece of folk pop details the toll that comes with leaving your life behind. Not only are you diving headfirst into a strange new world, you also leave behind a big part of what made you who you are. Even with someone by your side to share the experience it can be a challenging road to follow. There are plenty of songs out there that revel in the allure of the open road; it’s refreshing to hear an artist be so open and honest about the doubts and struggles that come with it.