First, a big thanks to all of you who open this newsletter every Sunday. It's a small community, but I value quality much more than quantity. The feedback I get after a new edition always motivates me anew every week.
Now, I would like to ask a tiny favour from you. Please take some time to fill out this small form. It only takes about 5 minutes, but this structured feedback helps me tailor the newsletter to your needs and expectations.
I've also made some minor adjustments to the newsletter's layout. I abolished the Apple Music track links. But you can still access all the songs in the Apple Music playlist.
Both playlist links are also present in the newsletter's footer alongside the social media accounts.
Today's selection is – for one exception – filled with subtle beauty—songs for dreamers. And one for the angry. (And nothing by the pensioners in mo-cap suits.) So, let's dive in.
Zeal & Ardor – Bow
In recent years, no other Swiss band has created more international fuzz than Manuel Gagneux's Zeal & Ardor. The highly praised amalgamation of black music and black metal erupted like an earthquake in the rusty metal genre.
After the sound's blueprint, Devil Is Fine, and the first proper record, Stranger Fruit, Zeal & Ardor have announced a new, self-titled album for 2022. The first single release, Run, is a fierce drum fire – followed by the complex, technical Erase. Both songs shine in their own regards while being nothing for the common ears.
Black cats showing up out of nowhere
Macbeth on heavy rotation
Hope dies in their hands though we don‘t care
The young girl screams: Death to the nation!
The latest track, Bow, is different. "The song takes out established themes and places them into a completely different background," says Gagneux. It's not rock music, nor is it metal, nor blues, nor gospel. But it's heavy, powerful, and demanding attention. Bow is loud without being overly noisy and wild. It's the angry sound of protest—a sharp social commentary.
Hilke – Paradoxes (feat. Frank Powers)
There's a grand nature to Paradoxes. Swiss artist Hilke collaborated with Dino Brandão (aka Frank Powers) to create this slow but stunning trip-hop hymn.
However, Paradoxes begins intimately. Powers drags out the syllables.
If love was easy
This should be easy, too
Keep your distance
If that's what you need
Nothing gives away the epic expansion that follows. The larger-than-life brass section roars, shrinking you to a bare existence. The voice multiplied to an artificial choir, only underlining the overwhelming notion of the song.
After Greta, it's Hilke's second single release of the upcoming debut album, Silent Violent – set to release in October. The two tracks already promise this to be a fascinating record.
Maimuna – Aux Gens du Vide
She won the m4music Demotape Clinic back in 2017, the only Swiss music award of substance. So, it should be evident that Cyrielle Formaz, aka Meimuna, is a force to be reckoned with – but a gentle one.