Monday, 8 December 2014

Sett the Beat

Stewdents! I am back in your midst, the corny jokes, lame innuendos and all round fun that comes with writing this blog has been sorely missed in my life this year! I am now a working man, studying is over and somebody was silly enough to think that hiring me would be a good idea...strange times abound! As I sit in the office staring at yet another report about how badly the global economy is doing I cannot but help myself as I start to daydream about that next amazing track that I will hear in the near future. It is a feeling that I am sure is shared by many of you who do me the courtesy of reading my musical ramblings. So without further ado I will give you your latest fix of musical madness.

1. GOVS - There Comes a Time

First up this weak we have the righteous masterpiece that is GOVS. Dreamy vocals overlaid with towering synth form the base as this song morphs your mind and gets those dear old feet out yours tapping. GOVS have managed to create a sound that easily transitions from half-beat to double beat and back again yet feels like it flows throughout in the easiest manner possible. These Australians really know how to throw a little synth party, I love me a little synth party and you should too!

2. Josh Wantie - Timekeeper

Next up we have something a little bit different, a guitar and vocal driven track from a local Durban talent and all round legend 'Josh Wantie', His latest track has got to be the pick of the bunch, it starts off sounding similar to a lot of singer-songwriter stuff that has been coming out lately but the song manages to captivate you with a melody that angels would be proud of and a sneaky little beat that gets the head bopping along, it has found its way onto my playlist that is dominated by indie-pop at the moment and that is no mean feat. It will find a snug little spot in your heart as Mr Wantie croons his way through your life.

3. HONNE - The Night

The middle of this week's playlist comes courtesy of the UK's HONNE, the duo have been putting together some rather inspired R&B lately, I'm gonna be honest and say that I'm just about as white as they comes, I pretty much define the expectation of a white man in South Africa...I look like Mr Bean when I dance, I love a spot of tennis on the weekend and I scream loudly at the TV during any sporting program where my team is playing (It doesn't help that I support Newcastle United who tend to lose more often than not). All this being said...even I feel that I can groove along to this stellar track from the duo. It exudes soul and sass and makes you get down and dirty with the beat while the vocals keep your head above water for a little bit of air to keep you grooving on. It was said best by another blogger 'they seamlessly blend sensual percussion, light synths, and evocative vocals to create another captivating down-tempo offering'. Go get your groove on!

4.  Dustin Tebbutt - The Breach

Another Australian makes his way onto one of my playlists. This haunting track comes courtesy of New England local, that's the Australian version of NE there, 'Dustin Tebbutt'. Apparently Mr. Tebbutt moved up to Sweden for 2 years to record music in the extreme cold...I for one am more fond of a sneaky cold beer on a sunny beach than the cold but I could never have scuplted the masterpiece that is 'The Breach'. The sprawling track carries the feel of the icy winter that morphs into a a beautiful spring as the song moves from verse to verse. It tells the story of a man coming back the warmth of the sun! Yeah I got deep there guys, don't hate now...once you listen you too will get all deep and 'feely' as well.

5. Albany Lore - The Cynic's Surrender

The final track this week is a powerful ballad from none other than Matt Rightford. Well the track pretends to be a ballad and then around 1 minute in it morphs into a symphonic orgy that is beautifully driven by vocals that manage to transcend the synth, sax various sounds that characterize this beautiful debut from a local lad. I cannot get over how beautifully this track is put together, it has pervaded my conscious and lodged in my brain for months on end. I cannot do it justice with words alone, it effortlessly takes you to another place altogether and oh boy that place is spectacular. I am waxing lyrical about this track because it is THAT good!

That's it for this week's playlist! See you again soon!

Monday, 1 December 2014

The Prodigal Son Returns

The stew is back baybaaaaay! It has been far too long since I have gotten around to providing the internet with my favourite form of indulgence...its music for all of those who's minds took a trip into the gutter! This honours year is finally slowing down and I have had some time to breathe once again, in the interim I have accumulated over 100 tracks that need to be shared with you all, so without further ado its time for the music to take centre stage!

1. New Navy - Heaven

First up this week is some dreamy indie-pop from Aussie kids New Navy. These Sydney natives just inspire me to pick up a good book, put my feet up and take a relaxing bath with 'Heaven'. Smoothe vocals, beats that just bubble under the surface as the song builds up and an aura of serenity pervade throughout as 'I could be in heaven' washes over your soul...these guys really make a good go at taking me beyond with this song. Definitely a song for a chilled afternoon in the sun!

2. Salt Cathedral - Holy Soul

Next up we have some charming female-lead indie-pop from the opposite side of the world. Salt Cathedral are 3 piece band based out of New York who have been performing together for around a year and a half now. Their sound is one of undertsated elegance, intro effortlessly leads into verse and into subsequent chorus, all lead by the soaring vocals of Julianna Ronderos. She is ably supported by a beat you can get your hips into and some snyth being artfully used throughout the track. One could even compare them to the early work done by London Grammar, that is high praise indeed from me!

3. Klo. - Make me Wonder

Oh hawt dayuuuuum, this track is a sizzler, it makes a white boy like me want to attempt to groove (it ain't a pretty sight). A beat to die for, vocals that gives a grown man goosebumbs and production levels way up high. This is one of my favorite tracks from the entire year, it has been blaring from my tiny car speakers for months. The duo from Melbourne have only just started to make waves on the scene but with some more offereings like this I can't see why they won't be huge. Even after months of listening I have yet to find a part of the song that does'nt seem to fit perfectly. I cannot be effusive enough in my praise for this duo! Get on it and listen!!

4. cx1331 - Unit

Yes that title is correct, that is the artist and track name. This sneaky little track popped up a few months ago and has RAC written all over it, beats that inspire a smile even on a rainy day, a groove to get those shoulders popping and all round a hell of a good time. Every time this track pops up it brightens up my day and makes me wish that I had half of the beat-making ability that this guy has. I'm actually just going to stop now and tell you to go and have a listen, you won't regret it.

5. The Whitest Boy Alive - Burning

The final track this week is an ode to a group that broke up earlier this year. WBA have been inspiring writers in coffee shops all over the world for the last few years now, their musicality and groove just fits right in with a perfect flat white and a laptop screen, even now I can feel the creative juices flowing, this is a very rare thing for me. Sadly they are no longer with us but we can enjoy their back catalogue or alternatively one can listen to 'Kings of Convenience' which has the same front man and who are one of my favourite bands of all time.

Thats it for this week. I don't want to spoil you too much just yet, too much good music and your ears may not cope! I hope that you all have a fantastic week and that these tracks brighten up your days as much as they do mine. See you all again next time!

Tuesday, 11 March 2014


Heyo guys!!! I'm currently scrambling to write this post between crazy amounts of economics lectures (How exciting right?!). I decided that my lunch break can be utilised for good things for once instead of stuffing my face as I love to do. You all deserve a new playlist to listen to and these bands in the playlist deserve more people listening to their stellar music. On another note...I'm still trying to act normal after seeing 'Foals' and 'Biffy Clyro' live this past weekend. I am quite confident in proclaiming that there was a collective 'wee' from the the crowd when 'Foals' started playing on Saturday night! Yoh it was crazy and I may have lost my mind, and dignity, for a couple of hours in a small valley surrounded by strangers. I love festivals for that very reason! 

1. Booklub - Western Hours

To start off the playlist we go local this week with a stunner of a track from 'Booklub', the Cape Town locals are fronted by 'Al Bairre' wild-child Nic Preen who manages to bring his natural exuberance to a sultry simmer throughout this moody track. 'Western Hours' could easily be the backdrop to a summer's evening drive with your mate that starts out chilled and just progresses into some crazy mayhem. The track builds from an easy chill to a crescendo of flying sax, guitar and vocals that mesh to create something rather beautiful. Ok enough gushing from me...go and make your life a lil better by having a listen to this track.

2. Vancouver Sleep Clinic - Flaws

The second track this week comes from Vancouver Sleep Clinic (VSC), they have actually been on the blog before way back in 2013 (We are halfway through March already. ..Yikes). 'Flaws' continues on from where their previous track left off, with an amazing aura of serenity. A busy day just seems to melt off your shoulders as you listen to the falsetto voice of the vocalist and the minimal backing beat eases out the crick in your neck from staring at a computer screen for too long! Well that's how I feel when I listen to this stunner of a track! I almost forgot to mention that the man who creates this magnificent music is only 17...yeah who else is feeling a lil lazy right about now!?

3. Mr Little Jeans - Good Mistake

My favourite singer is back!! WOOOOOO. Mr Little Jeans, who as you know if you have read this blog before can do no wrong in my eyes, dropped a new track called 'Good Mistake' a couple of weeks ago! She hasn't lost any of her magic touch and this is yet another artfully created track full of fun and pizazz with just a hint of complexity in the beat that makes you yearn to listen again and again if only to catch that subtle change in the harmony. Ok phew that was a long sentence. 'Good mistake' has all the ingredients for an indie anthem...a killer beat, sleek vocals, a sneaky hook and a subtle air of mysteriousness that comes along with a Norweighan female named 'Mr. Little Jeans'. Best yet, just wait until the bridge and you will realise why I have the biggest crush on this track!

4. Thomston - Midas

Next up we have a young man from New Zealand making killer pop beats with a darker tinge to them. I refuse to compare him to Lorde!! Just because they are from the same country does not mean that they are the same, that's like saying that 'Foals' and 'Zulu Winter' are the same...they aren't if you were wondering. Thomston has managed to create a sound of innocent pop with truly dark touches that really touch the soul. His voice really complements the simple yet effective beat and together it creates a truly unique sound that excites me for what is coming in the future!

5. Pigeon - Climbing Trees

The final track this week comes from Aussie 5-piece 'Pigeon'. The 5 piece has one of the funnest vibes, (yes I'm allowed to use that word on my own blog), that I have heard for ages and they always manage to improve my mood on a crazy day! It always astounds me how many quality bands come from Australia...what do they put in the water there!? 'Pigeon' don't have the most complicated sound in the world but what they do, they do strikingly well! A driving synth beat and some slick vocals combine to make this a definite in your playlist for that day that just seems to go on forever.

Well that's about it for this edition! I hope you enjoyed this week's playlist! I will be back with a new one when I can sneak a break from varsity! Have a great week everyone and don't forget to enjoy your stew! 

Monday, 24 February 2014

Classic Blends

Hello to all you avid 'stew-dents', I apologise but I truly am a sucker for a terrible pun! I hope that you have all had a great week since the last edition of The Weekly Stew. It really is a miracle that it is once again a 'weekly' playlist! This is what happens when you take my TV away...I suddenly become very productive! This week's playlist is much indier affair with a ton of indie-pop and reggae beats to keep you going throughout the week!

Its music time...

1. Wild Belle - It's too late

Oh how I love 'Wild Belle', their particular brand of psychedelic-reggae influenced-pop is so infectiously happy and groovy that I often find myself singing along in traffic and then dancing and then being hooted at by angry Capetonian women, (women tend to be very angry in the traffic in Capetown). The Chicago siblings actually played alongside Matt Mole when he played at the 100 club in London! 2 of my good mates (Here's looking at you Luke and Brad) saw them live and instantly fell in love...I skipped the seeing them live part and went straight to falling in love!

2. Nantes - Avid

Besides having a kick-ass name the 5 gents from Sydney who make up 'Nantes' happen to be making a habit of creating amazingly epic music! I have been a casual fan for a while but after hearing 'Avid' I was well and truly hooked! The track is layered full of verve and panache  and the lead singers vocals remind me ever so slightly of some of the early 'Interpol' tracks that remain anthems to this current day (At least to me they do)! Beyond anything else I would class 'Nantes' as a modern day 'The Cure'....there isn't much higher praise that I can give a band than that!

3. Pawws - Slow Love

Lucy Taylor aka 'Pawws' is my current celebrity crush! Her voice just entrances me and makes me fall in love. Other than that random fact I have to say that ' Slow Love' is one of the grooviest tracks I've heard from a female solo artist for a very long time! From around 18 seconds into the track the groovin' begins and then all hell breaks looks as the deep snyth beat kicks in to take the song to a whole new level. This seemingly innocent British girl has created a masterpiece of synth-pop for us to go wild to, all the while marveling at her pitch perfect vocals!

4. Cathedrals - Unbound

Cathedrals is just about the most excitingly mysterious thing to come out of San Francisco ever, so exciting that their trams don't even compare. The duo has managed to concoct such a pure unadulterated sound of soulful joy in their music, every time I listen to the soaring vocals and light synth-pop induced track, I can't help but be drawn into a new world of their unique creation. This is a perfect track for a lazy summers day in the garden!

5. Astronomyy - Drivin Me Crazy

Mmmmmmm. That's the expression that most people make after hearing an Astronomyy song for the first time! The Worcester based singer-writer-percussionist extraordinaire has this ability to put so many sneaky nuances and beats into a song while combining it with the perfect level of vocal ability to create one glorious track after another! One listen and you will be hooked into the soft and serenely beautiful world of Astronomyy, never to be seen listening to anything else ever again!

That's all for this week! I hope that you enjoyed this week's selection! Let me know if there are any tracks that you think I have missed out on! Till next week! SC

Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Definitive Pulse

Yes this is really a new blog post!? I'm just as shocked as you are, It's been almost 3 months since I last posted any tracks online for you to marinade over (That word totally works there right?). In those 3 months I have moved from my hometown of Durbs to Capetown to continue studying further, yes yes I am a nerd so no need to tell me that once again! I have around 60 to 70 songs which need to be posted online so here are the first 5 for you to peruse! (I have to admit that I wrote the rest of this post back in December so these songs may be a little old for some of you hipsters).

As always I have talked for far too long so its time for the music to begin...

1. Max Frost - White Lies

Max Frost has been writing music since he was 8 years old, when he finally made it into his teens (After 5 years of writing music) he decide that he was into old school funk and soul so he started incorporating those styles into his indie music. What we have today is a unique blend of indie and funk with so much soul it almost hurts. There is nobody else around that sounds quite like Mr. Max Frost! 'White Lies' starts off as a guitar ballad and develops into an up-tempo soulful look at a modern relationship and everything that comes with that. This track is is definitely one of my favourite cross-genre pieces that I have heard all year!

2. Julian Maverick - Good For Me

As soon as this track starts with its synth slide I start to do all of the dance moves that make my mates cringe and girls run for cover due to their utter cheesyness! As the song goes on my dance moves get even worse due to the vibe that this song brings with it, a sneaky bass line to gets your foot tapping and vocals to make you feel like you actually have the ability to dance (Which I don't). If you need to let off a little steam or go for a drive then this should be the first track on your playlist! Julian is a Melbourne native which makes him even cooler in my books!

3. Made In Japan - Definitive Pulse

'Definitve Pulse' is a good old fashioned indie rock 'n roll track! Its opening bars remind me slightly of 'Interpol' or even 'The National' with their laid back beats and definitive intrumentals that charecterise those two great bands. The track develops further with some good work on the high-hat and an epic riff here and there! I definitely want to hear more from these Sydney city slickers in the future.

4. Battleships - In Retrospect

I was sitting with my mate Dylan the other day just chatting about how many Australians are making amazing music and he told me to go on and check out 'Battleships', I had heard the name before but I had never really given them a proper listen so that day I did! Boy am I glad that I did, 'Battleships' have this understated sound that just encapsulates joy, class and exuberance, (OK I may have gotten carried away with a few big words there). In all honesty 'Battleships' sound amazing, 'in retrospect' is so well put together, the song just seems to flow flawlessly from intro, to verse, to chorus and then back to verse again! It's definitely worth a listen for everyone who enjoys a good indie rock ballad.

5. Royksopp - Running To The Sea (Feat Susanne Sundfor)

A new Royksopp track is always a reason to celebrate, this one even more so! 'Running to the Sea' is a classic synth-driven track with a back-breaking beat to go along with it. The vocals just add even more flavour to this peach of a track. In all honesty this track is right up there with the top ones of last year! I am surprised that it took so long to pop up on my radar (I must be getting lazy in my old age). Go listen and thank me later!

There will most definitely be a new post next week so come on back to your, once again, weekly dose of stew!