Take break-ups and heartaches, but make it mature and full of growth.
This is what Norwegian pop star Astrid S has given us in the sneak peak of her upcoming debut Album, Leave It Beautiful, to be released on October 16th, 2020.
The singer has already built herself up in a solid foundation within her music career from her 3 previous successful EPs as well as collaborations with artists like Shawn Mendes, JP Cooper, and more.
Not only does her vocal performance kill me in this song, the songwriting within itself could break my heart and sew it back together all in one.
Patience is a thing that I learned from you
That some things can’t feel wrong even though they’re true
Went through all the hard times together
Kept me calm when I’d lose my temper
I’m just really grateful that I had you
From everything to nothing at all
Every day to never at all
I mean, seriously?! It makes me think about how some relationships aren’t meant to be heartbreaking but full of growth and a lesson learned. We should all follow Astrid and take note of her optimism that she’s shared with us in this song. I am very excited to see her experiences with heartbreak and relationships when Leave It Beautiful drops. Check out It’s Ok If You Forget Me here.
Johnny Orlando introduces his latest song, Everybody Wants You, as his first single released from his upcoming EP. Prior to this single, he released ‘‘What If (I Told You I Like You)’’ which features Mackenzie Ziegler and has gained traction as a popular TikTok song.
Fans have been eagerly waiting for more of Johnny and I can understand why. At not even eighteen years old, Orlando has already signed with Universal Music Canada / Island Records, surpassed the two million monthly listeners on Spotify, and even took home the MTV Europe Music Award for Best Canadian Act in 2019.
EverybodyWantsYou talks about a common feeling of jealousy and how he sees attention that comes to someone that everybody else also wants.
And I wish that you would look at me
The way you’re looking at your own reflection (your reflection)
Now everybody’s watching you
And I can tell you’re loving the attention, hah
He teams up with director, Alex P. Smith and animator, Gabe Sapienza for his music video that draws attention to the dark and sad connotation to the song. I’m excited to hear more from Johnny and as we patiently wait for his upcoming EP, stream Everybody Wants You.
San Diego holds a variety of talented individuals, and it’s clear that Sam aka Slush Puppy is one of them. With an already impressive discography of self-produced work, he continues to prove that his music is worth listening to.
Having completed high school and gained attention from prior releases, he’s still in the process of creating music and finding his own artistic sound. “I would put stuff out on Spotify to see how it would go, and it was music that I made for fun. Now I’ve figured out that music is something that I want to do as a career and take seriously.” – Sam
The music has definitely made an impact as Slush Puppy amassed over 100k on his recent single “I Don’t Like Ur Friends,” released late in June of this year, as well as featuring in fellow up and coming artist david hugo’s single “9teen,” which made an appearance on Lyrical Lemonade.
Teaming up with the TRST. Records team (a company founded by Amisha Sarkar), Slush Puppy is taking the next step in his career, and I’m very excited to hear more from him knowing he is in good hands. His newest single “Sunroof” is exactly what I needed to hear during this sad summer in quarantine as it portrays nostalgic feelings of old, happy memories in past times. If you’re thinking about pre-covid summers, immediately throw on this song in the car and drive around.
“Chillin with our hands out the sunroof / Screamin to the sound of The 1975”
I’ve had my fair share of wanting to fast forward to 2021, but we all need those moments to reminisce on those nostalgic summer experiences and “Sunroof” is the best anthem for that.
Dhruv has been a Crowdsurfer favorite for quite some time now, and his next single continues to prove that. Following moonlight, a sweet song about the best parts of love, his newest track, Vulnerable, gives listeners a different taste as it represents the contrast in love; the highs and lows. ‘‘The song has a bit of sadness to the lyrics, but the track is upbeat production-wise, and I think that is supposed to represent those highs and lows. They both play hand in hand when it comes to relationships and I wanted to show that.’’
Baby, I’m falling into pieces in front of you My baby, he sees me so vulnerable So vulnerable And I’m wasted Spilling my secrets
‘‘It is a combination of being in an amplified emotional state from the mass of what he experienced along with being intoxicated that led to the concept of the song. I had a crush and on one drunken night, the feelings and alcohol all bundled up so much that I confessed to him that I liked him, got rejected but having that experience made the song. I wrote this 2 years ago, and in hindsight, being rejected was really important to my growth.’’
Incredibly written and heavily emotional, it holds the truth that love and relationships and everything in between is necessary. While dhruv continues to navigate his love life and writes about his experiences, we’ll be listening to Vulnerable on repeat until the next one.
Yoste (rhyming with “lost”) shares his new release, Flaws, produced by Tones and I, (of Dance Monkey fame) member, Konstantin Kersting, along with an authentically driven music video representing raw and real footage of Yoste, as the main focus, being submerged into a pool, that can be interpreted as to how our flaws remain a part of ourselves at our truest forms, like when Yoste submerged.
The video was filmed by Yoste’s father, none other than Anthony Sines, an award winning Australian cinematographer.. The song surrounds the concept of personalities in a relationship in which each person has their own set of flaws that get in the way and hold weight over them.
The lyricism is incredibly real and simple, yet remains complex. Especially at the Chorus section:
I’m not typical lately I’m so difficult when we Go outside, fall apart Kitchen lights, break my heart You were right, it was hard
Going back to the original idea of rawness that our flaws stem from, the part where he confesses his difficult traits as a flaw, speaks a hard truth. The performance is captivating but not so much distracting from the low-key production that supports it. Yoste describes his music and songwriting as the process of navigating life as a young adult, trying to express the highs and lows of relationships and personal struggles.
Yoste earned his credentials gaining attention from success of stand-out singles Arc and Blue from his debut album, try to be okay, released in 2019, amassing over 85 million streams throughout his discography. Touching into the atmosphere of ambience and pop landscape, he is heavily influenced by artists such as Jonsi, Bon Iver, The Cure, and The 1975, in which you can hear the little aspects of each within his music. Check out his music video for Flaws, and let us know what you think in the comments!
Whether you’re social distancing at home or driving to your (essential) job, consider putting on a track or two from Shallou’s newest album, Magical Thinking. It contains thirty-eight minutes of pure emotional joy that deserves to be thoroughly listened to. The first few seconds of the intro track immediately brought me back to a past summer and pushed all worries I had from this difficult time out of the way. Nothing like a nice drive with ‘‘Forget’’ playing in the background to make you feel like the world is back to normal, even if it isn’t.
The album surrounds the concept of memory loss, holding onto those intimate moments before they become out of reach. It shifts from the sadness of memory loss to represent the seasons with all of it’s changes and how that relates to people. The album holds an emotional aspect to it; maybe it’s from the introspective lyrics, or the spacious, light tone of the vocals, but it definitely left me with a heavy heart and a breath of fresh air. The production seems slightly opposite from emotional as it stems from joyous electronic pop but does a magnificent job keeping the allure of ‘‘whimsical sadness’’ that Shallou describes in his music.
The album features collaborators; Ashe, Daya, Zachary Knowles, and many others, that makes it all even more worth listening to as each artist brings their own flair without compromising the overall message in each track.
My favorite track would have to be, Older featuring Daya. It’s everything you need in a song from the combination of Daya’s vocals, Shallou’s production, and the top-notch songwriting putting it at my number one track on-repeat. The lyrics, ‘‘Maybe one day when I am older, I might understand why love doesn’t happen to everyone who wants it’’ is so beautifully written and performed, it is just the heart-breaking, ambient ear candy we were all looking for. Shallou has built a name for himself as one of music’s most organic artists who successfully gained over three million streams thus far. I cannot wait to hear more from Shallou and expect nothing less than something magical from him on the next release.
Fresh off the stage, Souly Had spared fifteen minutes in between his set to speak about his journey in the music industry, from playing guitar as a young kid to touring with Audrey Mika. ‘‘I started learning classic rock songs like Metallica and AC/DC but my genre of music, I don’t even know what to call it, leans more towards R&B/Hip-Hop.’’ He is noticeably inspired by artists like Chance the Rapper, Kali Uchis, Tyler the Creator, and Kendrick. His music resembles R&B love songs with a modern hip-hop twist, and melodies that’ll hook you from the start.
All at a young age, he transitioned from making his own guitar riffs to making beats and rapping at fifteen years old. Eventually leading to outstanding recognition on his cover of Amy Winehouse’s “Valerie,” that reached over 70k streams on SoundCloud.
That was three years ago, and Souly continues to prove himself to be a serious artist with his 2019 EP, B.L.I.S.S, including hit tracks, ”Hills” and “Crush,” which has earned him over 25 million streams on “Crush”alone.
His writing process varies as he continues to develop as an artist. ‘‘I used to sit down with a beat and just rap over that. Nowadays, I’ll write down a phrase that comes to mind in my notes. That typically becomes the idea of the song and I write around that. I’ve probably got like 500 voice memos alone with ideas.’’
One of his biggest challenges was getting recognized and after his success with the Amy Winehouse cover, he took a chance to show his potential. Prior to his EP, he released “Deja Vu” in 2017 which reached the attention of a popular Hip-Hop influencer who tweeted it out. Souly hit 10k streams within 24 hours of his release and got himself the recognition he deserved. Since then, he’s been featured on many Spotify curated playlists and is currently on tour with Audrey Mika.
Whether he’s talking about young love or heartbreak, and whether you relate to it or not, there’s no denying that his music is something you can vibe with. I got the opportunity to see him perform at a sold-out show in New York City and everyone in the audience reacted very well with his performance.
Souly Hadis making a name for himself as he plans to release two singles, “Goner”and “Heartbreak Hangovers,” and even hinted at an EP with seven tracks in the upcoming future. There is so much more music from him to be heard and we cannot wait until it drops. For the meantime, listen to his current tracks on all available streaming platforms!
Regardless of the rain pouring and the weather dropping, fans couldn’t stay away when Audrey Mika came to town. That being said, I was one of them. Luckily, a perk of writing for a magazine means you get early access to the show and get to avoid catching a cold. Walking into Mercury Lounge, you immediately pass the long and dark bar area until you reach the light at the end of the tunnel. In this case, it was a small, but beautiful stage, lit up with rays of purple, pink, and a hint of blue, calling to be performed on. Artists like The Strokes, The Killers, Jeff Buckley, and more have made a name for themselves all with their legendary performances there and tonight, Audrey Mika added her name to the roster.
Mika opened with her single, ‘‘Fake Heartbreak’’ in which every person in the room sang word for word. With each transition to each song, Mika performed outstandingly, proving her vocal range to be impressively wide all while showing off her dancing ability (which never missed a beat). Maybe it was the pajama-like pink heart pants she wore or the space-bun hairdo, but Mika marked herself as one of the sweetest performers I’ve ever seen. She even made a point to bring up a fellow Paperclip Club (her fan-base name) member, Kahliya, onstage and credit her for being a superfan and for her support from the beginning. In all my 22 years of live shows, I’ve never seen someone bring a fan onstage without having them be danced on or sang to, but only to thank them. How sweet is that!
Sonically, the show sounded even better in person than in headphones. With the help of her band mates, Cam Lee on drums and Joe Avio on guitars, Mika’s performances were fun and light, and you just wanted to dance all night long. She closed the show with, ‘‘Y U Gotta Be Like That’’, an obvious crowd favorite, but one of the most memorable parts of the show for me was her unreleased track, ‘‘Just Friends’’ in which she engaged with a call and response chorus section between her and the audience. The track had never even been heard and the audience responded as if they’d heard it all their life.
I wanted to wrap up with my favorite song of the night, ‘‘Following’ ’ that was released on her 2019 Album, Level Up. This song made me feel everything at once. With just an acoustic guitar and no-band at this point, she sang her heart out while the audience lit her up with their mobile flashlights as the entire stage appeared dark. While the majority of the show was entertaining and lively, it’s the precious moments like this one that took the cake for me. It was raw and pure which depicted the emotions in the song perfectly.
All in all, there is a reason that this show and many others were sold out. Mercury Lounge was lucky enough to have Mika play her music and I cannot wait until her next live show!