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This Week’s Top 5 Indie Music Tracks: “Fastracks” 29

SOUND KHARMA® | November 9, 2021

Preview 5 new indie music tracks in less than 5 minutes f. Michael Wilford “Rattle My Bones” (f. Sail Cassady), Telefís, Vini Vicious, Laszlo Jones & Jenn Vix.

NAMI International Helpline: https://togetherweare-strong.tumblr.com/helpline

US SAMHSA: (800) 662-4357  https://www.samhsa.gov/ 

US 24 Hour Crisis Line : https://www.crisissupport.org/programs/crisis-line/ 

Crisis Text Line: https://www.crisistextline.org/ 

US Veteran PTSD Crisis Hotline: (877) 717-PTSD (7873). This is a toll-free helpline available 24/7 to veterans seeking information, resources, and treatment referrals. https://ptsdusa.org/get-help/ 

You can submit a track for consideration (below).

ARTIST INFO & VIDEOS

Watch full videos and get more info about this episode’s featured artists below:

Michael Wilford is an exciting new face in the Canadian music scene. Michael grew up in Smithers, British Columbia, a little mountain town filled with folk music and protest songs. He credits his exposure to world-class artists in a small-town setting as one of his major inspirations to pick up an instrument at a young age. Now based in Victoria BC, he pursues music full time and uses his collaborative approach to songwriting to celebrate the talent and diversity of BC’s artists. His darkly cinematic songwriting and his collaborative approach to music-making are quickly turning him into an artist to watch.

 

London-based Dimple Discs will release the debut album from Telefís (the Irish Gaelic word for Television, pronounced Tele-feesh), a collaboration between producer/ mixer/ composer Garret “Jacknife” Lee (U2, R.E.M., Modest Mouse, The Cars, The Killers, Snow Patrol, Crystal Castles, Editors, Taylor Swift) and singer-songwriter Cathal Coughlan (Microdisney, The Fatima Mansions and many acclaimed solo works) on February 11.

In the meantime, these two acclaimed Irish iconoclasts present the ‘Mister Imperator’ EP, which includes the latest ‘Mister Imperator (Dub Mix)’ and two more remixes, as well as the original version of their recently-released ‘Mister Imperator’ single.

Titled ‘a hAon’ (Number One), this is a highly unique 13-track album that is part celebration, part satire, in which Telefís explores nostalgia, as experienced in the present day, by natives of what was formerly a culturally sealed-off small country on the very fringes of Europe. It also points a critical finger at today’s global hierarchies, an inspiration for the strange characters and caricatures that spring from Coughlan’s fertile imagination. Stark forms of imagery, bizarre to the modern eye and ear but treated as routine in the pre-globalization world, are pushed at the listener and viewer.

The second single from the album, ‘Mister Imperator’ is a deliciously retro-electro affair that loosely recounts the tale of a beloved pianist, who was a light entertainment staple of early TV fare dating back to the first broadcasts in The Irish Republic in 1961.

With Jacknife now based in Los Angeles and Cathal based in London, the two spent 2020 trading ideas and musical files during lockdown, hatching plans for a satirical, mischievous examination of Irish history and the pop culture of their lifetimes, what the two have labelled “a corrosive nostalgia”.

“I’d just finished mangling a Luke Haines and Peter Buck record. Luke knows Cathal and re-introduced us. On the first or second correspondence we thought we should make some music together. Music is probably the only way I can properly communicate with someone. I sent Cathal the backing track that would become ‘We Need’ and he sent me back the vocal and we went back and forth from there. Lockdowns and travel restrictions forced us to work remotely, and I think helped us get to where we got so quickly,” says Jacknife Lee.

“Cathal is, without doubt, one of the finest lyricists of our time and writes like no one else. Some of the vocals he sent over made me burst out laughing with giddiness and delight at the novelty of them. Mischievous, dark, arcane, crispy fresh, and always unexpected. Every song with a backstory that could be a novel. This is easily the most enjoyable and rewarding music that I’ve been involved with”.

Indeed, evidence of Coughlan’s lyrical ingenuity and artistry was on full display earlier this year when he returned after a 10-year absence with a highly acclaimed solo album ‘Song Of Co-Aklan’.

On the musical side, Jacknife Lee uses his extensive sonic palette to create an irresistible mix of cinematic instrumentals and electro-funk backdrops full of melodic, squelchy synths and thunderous bass-lines, often with a cheeky nod to electro-pop history. He has also created remixes for such artists as Radiohead, U2, Blur, Run-DMC, Pink, Future Sound of London, Christina Aguilera, TLC, Missy Elliott, Busta Rhymes, Eminem, The Raveonettes, Kraftwerk, New Order and Kasabian.

Cathal observes, “Collaborating in this way, with a dynamic and consummate artist, who has access to a wide range of skills that I don’t have, but with whom I share many common interests and cultural/historical reference points, has been one of the highlights of my creative life. It’s made me so glad that I’ve been able to remain active for long enough to see something like this happen. Easily as spontaneous and full of surprises as any in-person collaboration, it’s shaken loose many weird and hopefully wonderful things in my verbal workshop. And nobody has heard me use my voice in some of these ways before now, either”.

‘Mister Imperator (Dub Mix)’ is out everywhere digitally, including Spotify, Apple Music and Bandcamp, where the full ‘Mister Imperator’ EP is also available. On February 11, the ‘a hAon’ LP will be released on CD and vinyl (both with a two-sided lyric sheet insert) with physical pre-order at https://ffm.to/telefisahaon and the digital release at https://orcd.co/telefisahaon.

After performing and recording as a trio for two years, guitarist Gil Meza joined in 2020, a move that catapulted the band into a very fruitful period, writing a new album which was recently recorded in Tel Aviv, due to come out in December 2021.

Following substantial airplay on FM radio in the US, Australia and England with the last two singles they have released, Vini Vicious are experiencing their most prolific year ever, with “Fuzzy” being the first single off of their new album “Atelophobia”.

Freedom seems to be the word that best describes Laszlo’s music and himself as an artist. He released his first record called “Banana Nation” in France in 2011, with Universal Music, achieving a fair critical and commercial success locally, and topping a million views with his video “Download Me Im Free.”

Laszlo is first and foremost a music composer and he lets himself be guided by all 5 senses, his critical but joyful view of the world, and his remarkable appetite for freedom, to achieve exquisite songwriting, which is his strength.

Born in Beirut from a Dutch and Hungarian Father and a Lebanese mother, Laszlo Jones’ childhood was punctuated by many travels, following the expatriations of his parents, and gave him an exalted taste for adventure, discovery, and freedom. With a composing style characterized by crossover atmospheres, his signature sound lies at the intersection of pop/soul, rock, metal and electro.

In the end, it’s as if Laszlo Jones was composing music for his own mental movies. His inspiration does not know the format, it is free, like him.

Iconic alternative pop artist Jenn Vix is back with an impactful new single for our times, titled ‘PTSD’. On this single, which offers a glimpse into her personal experience with the diagnosis and life with this disorder, she worked with Grammy-nominated mastering engineer Chris Gehringer (Dua Lipa, Lizzo, Lady Gaga, Twenty One Pilots, St. Vincent).

With her signature vocals and unique timbre, Vix brings her unique brand of postpunk-tinged alt-pop into new territory with a nod to R&B and trap beats programmed by French beat producer Mister Lazy.

Creative, courageous and connected, Jenn Vix is not only an ultra-talented artist – she’s a survivor. While her professional career reads like something of a ‘Who’s Who in Music’, her life story underlines her notable perseverance, drive and commitment to music.

Over the years, Jenn Vix has collaborated with Reeves Gabrels (The Cure, David Bowie, Tin Machine), John Ashton (Psychedelic Furs), Andy Anderson (The Cure, Iggy Pop, Hawkwind), Danny Chavis (The Veldt), Marco Pirroni (Adam Ant, Rema Rema, The Models, Sinead O’Connor), Dirk Ivens (Absolute Body Control, The Klinik and Dive), and Rodney Anonymous (The Dead Milkmen).

“This new track was primarily written about my experience of being diagnosed with PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) and what it is like to live with it. I’ve survived SA, homelessness, DV, attempted homicide, and two near fatal illnesses. Though I’ve written about what I’ve gone through, this song is for everyone who has experienced or is experiencing trauma. I deeply empathize with anyone dealing with it,” says Jenn Vix.

“During this pandemic, so many people have experienced intense heartbreak, loss, and other deeply traumatic experiences. I lost two of my friends, and I know many who have lost loved ones, friends, family members, co-workers, and people they saw in their daily lives; before the lockdowns happened.”

Getting her musical start in Providence, RI, she also cut her teeth in NYC in her teens, crossing paths with the likes of Iggy Pop, her first experience as a vocalist being with 1980s one-off band Disco Donut (with Adam Horovitz of The Beastie Boys and singer-songwriter Nicole Willis). A decade later, Vix broke out on the national scene. Her self-released album received a glowing 3.5-star review in Rolling Stone, who wrote, “Vix sounds perpetually enraptured. And the Rhode Island multi-instrumentalist has reason to be. Her music–clear, simple melodies awash in echo–is all dreaminess and shuddering, and from inside its swirl, her voice wafts up”.

As an indication of her ever-evolving approach to her craft, in recent years, Vix has been performing both as a solo artist and also as a drummer (on an electronic drum kit) and vocalist, in Boston-based post-punk / electronic rock duo Feeney Vix.

Apart from PTSD, Vix notes that there is help for people undergoing various forms of psychological distress, noting, “I’ve placed links to resources for help; both national and international, under the official music video. I’ve received a lot of help over the years from NAMI, so I’ve also placed a link to their official donation site. I donate to them and I encourage anyone in the US who can donate to them, please help. It is tax deductible, and every donation counts. Thank you.”

As of November 5, ‘PTSD’ will be online everywhere, including Spotify, Deezer, Amazon and Apple Music.. Proceeds will be donated to NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness), who provide critical mental health resources and support to millions of people across the USA.

Written by SOUND KHARMA®




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