Clearing out the CokeCanPoetry inbox for 2015, there are a few notable submissions we never got around to featuring — so this week (culminating in our year-end ‘best of’ list), we remedy this. One such instance is neo-soul group Ephemerals, who released their sophomore album chasin ghosts this past October. The UK act came together when musician Hillman Mondegreen met singer Wolfgang Valbrun while on tour in France with another project — an intersection which would eventually lead to the band’s formation and current identity as a seven-piece. For a sampling of their capabilities, listen to the soaring piano anthem “You’ll Never See Me Cry.” With soulful gems like this, let’s hope the group is longer lasting than their name would suggest.
Described as a Josey Wales outlaw-type raised on N.E.R.D and Kanye‘s 808s & Heartbreak, Steven A. Clark is a new artist based out of Miami beginning to make a name for himself. Having been compared to Frank Ocean and Twin Shadow, he’s poised for big things with the release of his debut album, The Lonely Roller out this month via Secretly Canadian. Similar to the aforementioned artists, he’s taken R&B and added his own blend of cinematic pop and electronics. Listen to the soul-stirring track “Can’t Have,” with its strings-infused opening, ardent production and impassioned vocals below.
Clark will be appearing at CMJ in October, followed by a run of shows with Sinkane in November. Find the full schedule below, which includes a stop at DC’s Black Cat.
Steven A. Clark Tour Schedule:
Tue. Oct. 13-Sat. Oct. 17 New York, NY @ CMJ
Tue. Nov. 10 Philadelphia, PA @ Johnny Brendas (tickets) *
Wed. Nov. 11 New York, NY @ Le Poisson Rouge (tickets) *
Thu. Nov. 12 Boston, MA @ Great Scott (tickets) *
Fri. Nov. 13 Portsmouth, NH @ 3S Art Space (tickets) *
Sat. Nov. 14 Burlington, VT @ Higher Ground (tickets) *
Sun. Nov. 15 Montreal, QC @ Bar Le Ritz (tickets) *
Wed. Nov. 18 Toronto, ON @ The Drake Underground (tickets) *
Fri. Nov. 20 Detroit, MI @ Majestic Caf (tickets) *
Sat. Nov. 21 Chicago, IL @ Schubas (tickets) *
Sun. Nov. 22 Cincinnati, OH @ MOTR Pub (tickets) *
Tue. Nov. 24 Columbus, OH @ Skullys (tickets) *
Wed. Nov. 25 Washington, DC @ Black Cat (tickets) *
* w/ Sinkane
Today marks the release of a surprise album by none other than bass wizard Stephen Bruner, professionally known as Thundercat. The mini-LP, which was announced only a few days ago is entitled The Beyond / Where the Giants Roam and was released on Flying Lotus‘ label Brainfeeder. FlyLo actually co-produced the lead track “Them Changes,” which is a funky and jazz-infused jaunt about the crimson aftermath of a love gone wrong. The number also features notable jazz musician Kamasi Washington on sax. We can’t say enough good things about this one, so listen below and then head over to iTunes to purchase / hear the album in full.
Oakland seems to be a burgeoning place for new music these days, as evidenced by promising young bands such as Bells Atlas. Inspired by an eclectic mix of influences, the quartet merge elements of jazz, samba, neo-soul and West African music into their sophisticated “kaleidosonic” sound. Check out their latest offering “Bling,” the vibrant second single off their forthcoming EP Hyperlust.
HONNE has been on the top of the blogosphere charts for some time now, but it wasn’t until we heard “Top To Toe” that we fell head over heel. The UK duo make soulful, sensuous music along the lines of Chet Faker or SOHN. Honne is a Japanese word describing a person’s true feelings or desires, which in the culture is often contrasted with tatemae — the Japanese word for public behavior — to highlight the dichotomy between the two.
In light of this, honne (本音) seems like a worthy title for the London duo’s brand of late night, swoon-inducing electro-soul. Take a listen to “Top To Toe” off their EP Coastal Love, released this month below.
In the wake of SXSW, the musical illuminati have spoken and the consensus is that singer-songwriter Leon Bridges is poised to be the next big thing. Drawing comparisons to Sam Cooke with his retro, 60s-soul inspired sound and matching sartorial aesthetic, if you’re as keen on this era as we are you will definitely want to get acquainted with this Fort Worth artist.
Although the crooner has only a few singles to his name currently, keep an eye out for an album to be released via Columbia Records later this year. Meanwhile, doo-wop your way through “Better Man” below.
If you’re looking for an instant aural pick-me-up, look no further than the debut single from Jodie Abacus, “I’ll Be That Friend.” Sounding like a cross between Stevie Wonder and Billy Joel — the London-based crooner packs a soulful punch, with plenty of poppy and heartwarming vibes to go with. Stream below.
In light of the fact that Jungle is playing in DC this week, we thought now would be an appropriate time to share the amazing video for their single “Time.” Co-directed by Oliver Hadlee Pearch, the London duo premiered the video a week before releasing their smash self-titled debut this July. The short—similar to the last one for “The Heat”—centers around two older gent’s proclivity for dance, culminating in a full on dance-off in a high school auditorium. Watch the fierce battle that transpires below.
Can’t wait to catch these cats tomorrow, September 30 at Black Cat!
And just for kicks — we also wanted to share the new Joy Orbison rhythmic rework of Jungle’s “The Heat.” One of the few remixes that Jungle have permitted, UK’s Joy O brings some intricate synth work and basslines to the groovy original. Right on time.
Sinkane is the nom de plume of Sudanese-born artist Ahmed Gallab. At the age of five, he moved to Columbus, Ohio, escaping the country’s political violence of the late 1980s. After becoming part of the city’s hardcore punk scene, Gallab eventually made his way to New York, where he began working on his solo project in Brooklyn.
He previously worked as a session multi-instrumentalist musician for Yeasayer, Caribou, Of Montreal, and more. Filled with funky, soulful basslines and a distinctive voice, Sinkane is slated to release his 2nd album Mean love via DFA Records September 2. Get your body moving with his track “How We Be,” available for streaming below.
Sinkane is scheduled to perform at DC9 on October 8.
To make your Friday just that much better, I’ve got another Sam Smith giveaway for you! I’ve got a couple of autographed CDs to hand out, and one signed vinyl of Sam Smith’s new album, In the Lonely Hour. To win, leave a comment below or send me a tweet and let me know your favorite Sammy Smith song.
If you haven’t picked up Sam’s new album on iTunes yet, you’re missing out. Reset your week and listen to “Restart” below as you ponder your favorite track.