“Love, Grey Skies” by Do You Feel Lucky?
Do You Feel Lucky? is the supergroup we didn’t know we needed. Comprising Barry’s Dead, Hayes Gotsick, and Anthony Doud of Safari Williams, the band uses “Love, Grey Skies” to prove the members are incredible foils to one another. Doud’s expert composition-skills not only show off that he’s a full-fledged music theory nerd; but it also pushes Barry to pace his lightning-fast delivery differently than he would in his solo work. In turn, Barry’s sharp-tongued verses perfectly accentuate the silky, softness of Gotsick’s soulful follow-up verses.
“Drive” by Liamette
Rapper Liamette has shown he’s making big moves in 2021, following up February’s INTERSTELLAR EP with two more loose singles in May. The first, “WANTED!,” is a textbook display of Liamette’s signature sinister sound, but his second single “Drive” ups the ante. “Drive” lands right in the sweet spot between the softer parts of the INTERSTELLAR EP and the harshness of “WANTED!” It’s catchy with a hard rock edge, but it’s also some of the most polished and robust work we’ve seen from Liamette.
“Legendary Bond” by Buckhead Shaman
“Legendary Bond” gives us a peek at the playful side of alt-pop act Buckhead Shaman. It opens on a humorous spoken word intro where he’s telling charmingly corny little jokes, but “Legendary Bond” quickly transforms into an evolving, dynamic composition. More 80s-influenced than the 70s and disco-inspired work we’ve come to know from Buckhead Shaman, “Legendary Bond” is full of gated-reverb and woodwinds reminiscent of 80s radio hits from Phil Collins, Toto, and Yes.
“I Know I’m Funny haha” by Faye Webster
Faye Webster’s defining quirk is her peculiar talent for illustrating intimate microcosms in every song. “I Know I’m Funny haha” is the epitome of this, as Faye reveals tiny details of life with her partner: meeting his sisters, the rental home they share, and gifting him the same kind of bass “the guy from Linkin Park plays.” Released alongside the track “Cheers,” “I Know I’m Funny haha” comes on the heels of Webster’s announcement of a Fall tour, and an impending full-length release.
“Bugspray” by Twelve25
“Bugspray” is the first sign of Twelve25 since their collection of releases in 2019, and the group returns with a new set of inspirations to add to their soul/hip-hop/alt-rock fusion. “Bugspray” still bears the trademark sweet, laidback spirit Twelve25 introduced in their debut album Ease; but mixes in a newfound maturity, notable sense of longing, and a 90s alternative vibe a la Mazzy Star or Cocteau Twins. The resulting concoction is smart, savvy, and cool, and leaves us hoping Twelve25 sticks around to serve us more.
Artifact by Lilac Shades
Grunge outfit Lilac Shades resurrects with the album Artifact, the first release since their self-titled debut LP in 2014. The last seven years haven’t been completely quiet though. Lilac Shades member Isaac Bishop is one half of rowdy Atlanta garage rock duo Fun Isn’t Fair, who had a strong start with their first full length in 2019. Lilac Shades is markedly darker and more ominous than the bright, energetic ethos of Fun Isn’t Fair; commonly taking long, dramatic detours to explore gothy, hard rock soundscapes.
“2 Soft 4 Breaking Up” by Canopy Joc
In his third single of 2021, we now have full proof of concept for Canopy Joc. “2 Soft 4 Breaking Up” solidifies the foundation of the project’s blending of languid grooviness with manipulated vocals to create an off-kilter type of sensual, soul music. Aided by the distinct and cohesive art style throughout the three singles, all the materials are there for Canopy Joc’s final buildout; priming him for a full-length release.
Rad Boy by Dylan Elliott
Dylan Elliott has a special kind of adventureness in his work; he isn’t afraid to try out different musical practices and genres just to see what sticks. Rad Boy shows off Elliott’s process of discovering the sounds in which he’s most interested. “Kill the Track” and “Trippy Metal” run with the buzzing saw synths found on his punky February release Drole. Stand-out song “Time We Wasted” refines those sounds best as he distills them into a smooth, poppy RnB track.