Charlotte Brandi – DER EKEL
How did we stumble into this sacred hall? Where's the source of these voices? And why do they pierce so effortlessly through skin and flesh?
Charlotte Brandi, a German artist, is about to release her sophomore record early next year after 2019's The Magician. While the songs on the debut album were sophistically arranged and the lyrics in English, Brandi transitioned to German texts and reduced compositions, which never fight for the spotlight against her voice in the 4-track EP AN DAS ANGSTLAND (2020).
But DER EKEL, her latest single, is the most radical shift; a sacral vocal track in which Brandi juxtaposes choral pathos and the song's feminist message. It constantly swings between the vocal's impressive emotionality and the lyrics' humourous twist and turns. DER EKEL is bold and surprising.
Karin Park – Tokyo by Night
The composition slowly builds up depth and spreads its darkened suspense—between danger and anticipation. Then, the voice cuts in like the sun through a thick layer of clouds.
Tokyo by Night by Swedish synth-pop artist Karin Park has a troubled history. "The first time I heard a finished version of this track was in 2013 when I saw a YouTube clip of it being played at Tomorrowland," she explains. Someone had signed a contract behind Park's back, and Tokyo by Night got beyond her control.
Although she was amazed by the journey the song had taken, Karin Park also states: "In my head, I always heard this song in a totally different version which I have recorded now."
Finally, the world gets to know Karin Park's own interpretation of Tokyo by Night, which is intriguing. The song is full of tension, flickering highlights, and a sombre pulse. It feels ecstatic without overindulging and seductive without being explicit. And in the centre of it all: Park's ambitiously pleading voice.
Alice Boman & Perfume Genius – Feels Like A Dream
A smooth fabric of velvety comfort lulls the soul. A damped and dreamy duet that sparks warmth like a crackling chimney. And constantly lingering in the air is this futile question: Is all of it really happening?
Alice Boman is gifted with an angelic voice that conveys a haunting vulnerability as only a few can. When she sings, your heart is aesthetically stabbed with crucial precision. Now, the Swedish singer-songwriter has collaborated with another of these voices, US-born musician Parfume Genius to create the love song Feels Like A Dream.
Feels Like A Dream is a sonic conversion between two stunning voices, a song that rises towards exuberance but begins muffled and reduced. Its message is universal: "When you take me in your arms, nothing else matters. Sometimes it feels like a dream to be with you." Feels Like A Dream doesn't pretend to be anything but a love song and remains truly great in honesty.
Lydmor – Shanghai Roar (Acoustic Version)
The piano plays eagerly, emphasizing the roaring voice demanding attention. And despite the acoustic simplicity, the song rises like a skyline into a starry night, reaching far beyond our limited imagination.
Shanghai Roar concluded Lydmor's 2018 record I Told You I'd Tell Them Our Story. The original version is an epic electro-pop piece—larger than life in many ways with its slow but massive arrangement and story of a twisted relationship.
Now, the Danish artist has revamped Shanghai Roar in an acoustic version that replaces the song's cinematic appearance with painful intimacy.
If you want to know whether a song is truly remarkable, reduce it to the max. In this regard, Shanghai Roar is definitely one of them. Nothing distracts you from Lydmor's storytelling, her captivating phrasing, supported by the resounding piano. Everything is immediate: the love, the longing, the regret, and the despair. Even Lydmor's voice cracks at the end.
Yule Post & Tom Gatza – Blast Book
Breaks and cracks are entirely intentional. The elements are detached, fleeing each other but inevitably colliding weirdly. And yet, it works surprisingly well.
Yule Post, a multidisciplinary artist who studies design in Berlin, and Tom Gatza, the producer who creates sounds and music for theatres—this collaboration promises a unique work of art. Blast Book is their debut single, one that is full of contradictions and contrasts.
The combination of Yule Post's distinctive voice and Tom Gatza's sensitive work on the piano are the foundation of Blast Book's intrigue. The song boasts a tender fragility, at least until the middle of the sound, when suddenly a wobbling bass shatters the delicate atmosphere. But the moment rushes by like a train at full speed; there's hardly any time to process what just happened. Blast Book breaks with conventions—a postmodern ballad.