The past year may yet be remembered as a time when artists were born. Mia Yermeche is ready to make her claim to be one of them. From Bettystown, Co. Meath, Yermeche always loved writing, and always loved music. But it was only in the summer of 2020, with her final year of secondary school ahead of her, and a drastically reduced ability to go out with her friends, that she was drawn to finally bring these two elements of her life together.
“I’ve always loved English in school. I used to record voice notes of little musical ideas that came to me.” Yermeche explains.
Chris Kabs, the Irish producer - best known for his recent work on the critically acclaimed ‘2020 D|Vision’ for JyellowL - got in touch after spotting one of Yermeche’s Instagram covers. Kabs recorded and produced ‘Butterflies’ with her at TEMO Universal, Dublin, in August 2020.
Shimmering organ synths paint a sweetly imaginative backdrop from the outset of the track, quickly punctuated by Yermeche’s crisp vocal style. The result is a ‘hovering’ quality to the overall sound, reflective of the thrill and magic of infatuation, and the anticipation of a date - as well as of course, butterflies. All of this makes it difficult to believe that ‘Butterflies’ is, in fact, the first song that Mia Yermeche has ever written.
Her songwriting approach is reminiscent of the tight pop stylings of Mahalia and Kehlani, but with the sensitive authenticity of a young Alicia Keys. These elements come together to create a satisfyingly smooth pop ballad, yet with heart and depth upon repeated listens. And in the capable hands of Kabs as producer, the track’s arrangement charts a thoughtful path to the repeat button.
“There’s a lot of things I want to say, songs I want to release. This one is me being girly, sugar-coated, poppy,” Yermeche says about the track. “I envision someone getting ready for a night out to it, in anticipation of the day that we can all do that again.”
With this serving of sonic fantasy for her listeners in the meantime, Mia Yermeche seemingly effortlessly asserts herself as an R&B songwriter to watch. With a level of quality and attention to detail rarely seen on a debut, ‘Butterflies’ is the sound of an artist taking flight.
nicha is a 23-year-old Northern Irish native, born and raised in Holywood, Co. Down and also known as Lucy Robinson. In July 2020 nicha took the scene by storm with her debut single 'Devices' – a song about our society being addicted to our phones. She has a series of exciting releases on the horizon.
nicha has been about for a mere hot minute and has already been critically acclaimed by some big names, drawing attention from BBC Radio Ulster’s Stephen McCauley, RTE 2 FM’s Dan Hegarty, RTE 2XM, Hot Press and more.
nicha’s Hendrix, Dylan and Marley fuelled childhood have created the basis of her musical palette. With her clever lyrics laced with subtle humour and soothing voice, nicha captivates you and speaks to you. She writes about her own personal struggles as well as those of friends and family. In her music, she talks about people, mental health, environmental issues and the world as it is around us. nicha aims to help people and draw awareness to current issues we face day to day in a powerful yet easy-listening way.
nicha’s new 'Saltwater Song' track is liberating and empowering. It tells the story of someone who is struggling to overcome personal issues such as a bad relationship, addiction or an unhealthy habit. Weighted by these issues they are unable to become their best self or reach their full potential.
The music reflects this as well through a wash of melodies and dreamy instrumentals. 'Saltwater Song' will submerge your ears into a dream-state. It ebbs and flows like a sonic rollercoaster painting the picture of someone who desires more from their life than what is in store currently.
This budding young artist has worked with producer Michael Mormecha to conjure up another fresh, new track. With subtle hints of electronica, elements of folk and a strong essence of soft-rock, 'Saltwater Song' shows off nicha’s ability to blend genres once again, rolling off the back of her last critically acclaimed track; 'Little Bird'. nicha has exposed herself with vulnerability and attitude in 'Saltwater Song' through captivating lyrics, superb music and a unique, unforgettable voice.
Dublin-based new wave rock band Hook are set to release a new song, “Best Days,” their first release of the year.
Eoin (vocals, guitar) says, “The song is an autobiographical account of being a young person or in college. For some, it's a very lonely and isolating time. Everyone is telling you that these are the best days and years of your life, but more often than not it doesn't feel that way. There’s so many expectations to be social and interesting, but most people in fact have trouble making friends or feeling accepted.”
He goes on to say, “The chorus states that these are the best days of my life, but I don't think of them like that, and in fact can't imagine anything worse than that being true.”
The lyrics were started by Morgan (drums), and the idea resonated with Eoin, who contributed and added chords and melody.
The song features Hook’s signature 80’s new wave rock sound. With a simple guitar line and more active bass that pops out between chords, the drums are simple and almost drum-machine like.
Hook wanted to capture a sense of nervousness and foreboding. The song features harmonics, distorted sounds, panned elements, representing what’s going on is in the narrator’s head and what they are feeling. Things are confusing and unclear and their mind is clouded.
Hook are Eoin O’Donnell (vocals, guitar), Morgan O’Brien (drums) Danny Spelman (bass, vocals). The song was self-recorded in Hook’s home studio and self-produced. It was mastered by Ciaran Byrne.
Hook are a new wave rock band from Dublin, Ireland. Their sound fuses new wave with punk and grunge. Formed in early 2019 they spent the year writing, rehearsing and recording. They released their debut EP in March 2020 to positive reviews and radio play across the world. Their songs are about the small moments, the brutality of love and finding the beautiful in the simple.
21 year old uk artist nathan rogue just released his third single 'promises' featuring lottie franklin
Nathan Rogue is a Singer/Songwriter and performer from the UK, who just released his third single “Promises'' featuring talented singer Lottie Franklin. The 21 year old describes his music as upbeat with a pop like twist on today’s hip hop genre.
His music brings a positive social commentary on youth culture & society, which is light hearted & bubbly, with layers of stunning vocal harmonies made to bring a smile to your face & put a bounce in your step. The plan is to take it around the country and build a hardcore fanbase on top of his already loyal online fanbase.
The single encapsulates the essence of Nathan, being inspired by Afrobeat and Hip Hop music, the young artist has experimented & adapted his usual genre melting pot to conquer the UK dance scene. The lyrics that accompany are a talking point in itself with Nathan explaining to us: “I wrote ‘Promises’ after a breakup when things were still raw. I felt like it was a good time to write the song as the emotions were still fresh and I wanted listeners to relate to the situation”. With two emotive and powerful vocal performances and a hard hitting beat behind, it’s hard not to imagine this being played on the 21st June as a party anthem.
Nathan is working on his new E.P. “The aim is to take the music to the top” he says, and we believe he will.
'hey jimbo' is another rocking anthem by irish indie folk musician jim mchugh dominated by a powerful guitar riff and a catchy chorus
Jim McHugh’s new single Hey Jimbo, the second offering from his new album ‘Pretending to Wake Up’ was released on 26th March 2021. The album is due out on 28th May 2021.
Jim says of his latest single: ‘Hey Jimbo center’s around the history of past relationships, not all directly my own but from we all know these stories of unrequited love. The title takes its name from my nickname ‘Jimbo’ and its as you will hear from the song its often hollered out as ‘Hey Jimboooooo’. Similar to my previous single ‘Dave’ the song evolves around the opening guitar riff and the band powerfully supports the flow of energy throughout it’.
Jim’s previous single Dave released in February 2021 was featured by Hotpress and received excellent reviews national press and blogs. Jim’s last album release ‘My Nuclear Radio’ was critically received and album single My Mandalay featured on the ‘RTÉ RADIO 1 recommends’ playlist in Nov/Dec 2019, and was the ‘LMFM All Out Local Song Choice’ for March 2019. Single Everything’s Cool was Roddie Cleere’s ‘Song of the Week’ on KCLR in August 2018 while Avenue Road and Marjorie were widely played at home and abroad.
Hey Jimbo was recorded, produced and mixed by Alex Borwick (Parliament Funkadelic, Catfish & The Bottlemen, Niamh Regan, Sput Searight, Lankum) at Black Mountain Studios, Jenkinstown and Wynne Wynne Studio, Dundalk. It was mastered by Fergal Davis (Sinéad O’Connor/Muse).
Hey Jimbo features Jim McHugh on Vocals/Backing Vocals, Electric Guitar, Paul McCabe on Bass/ Backing Vocals, Butch McNeill on Drums and Alex Borwick on Backing Vocals.
Kildare singer-songwriter NÍV has released “Home”, the latest single from the up and coming Irish artist. The beautiful, nostalgic folk song features layered vocals, plucked guitars, and swells with emotion and ambient sounds.
Talking about the single, NÍV says “This song has ended up meaning quite a lot to me. It was written during the very first lockdown and so you could say it’s a gateway into my mind and what it was feeling at that time. As a result of the pandemic, I think that people haven’t been able to make it back home to see family and friends. I think as well everyone is missing what life was like before all of this began. Those kinds of feelings are where this song came from. It’s an echo of the warm nostalgic feeling that goes hand in hand with memories of home.”
The song was created under circumstances of uncertainty, but its message is still of hope and resilience. The song uses warm descriptions of home as a distraction from pain and anguish. The lyrics of the song mirror what many people are going through at this time. They epitomise people’s need for safety and familiarity and a want for finding “our way back home.”
NÍV is the alias for Niamh Murray, a Kildare singer songwriter from Maynooth. Since launching her solo career as NÍV, a little over a year ago, she has already gained many achievements. In March 2020, Nív sold out her first Single Launch in The Workman’s Club for her single “Silly Voices”. In April, Nív was given the opportunity to perform on Hotpress Magazine’s “Lockdown Sessions”. Following this, in early May, Nív was added to RTE Radio 1’s Recommends List. She was also shortlisted for Four Star Pizza’s Star Nation Competition as a Leinster Provincial Winner. Her song “Moonlight” was also featured as Hotpress Magazine’s Track Of The Day. On Spotify alone, in one year, NÍV has gained 15k new listeners across 73 countries.
Niamh’s music is inspired by Irish traditional music and folk, as well as singer-songwriters such as Damien Rice, The Cranberries and Joni Mitchell.
alt pop band soda blonde announces debut album 'small talk' - the single of the same name is out now
The debut album from Soda Blonde may be called Small Talk, but if there’s one thing the Dubliners do not do, it’s mince words. Out July 9th via Velveteen Records, the entirely self-produced album sees the group reflecting on their twenty-something experiences with refreshingly honest transparency.
“To put it simply, Small Talk is about life in our 20’s,” says Faye O’Rourke, Soda Blonde’s enigmatic front woman. “Every part of us is in here, both subliminally and literally. Lyrically, this record is like a collection of my flaws and insecurities. They’re lingering awkwardly by the bar at a crowded social gathering, waiting to integrate with the wider world”.
The album’s titular lead single – available to stream HERE – is Soda Blonde’s way of taking a seat at the table of their own narrative, and its glittering alt-pop hooks present the foursome as a compelling collective voice in music.
All four band members (O’Rourke, guitarist Adam O’Regan, drummer Dylan Lynch and bassist Donagh Seaver-O’Leary) are seasoned musicians, despite their youth. They have been playing together since their early teens, with their previous band – the internationally renowned Little Green Cars, whose seminal debut album skyrocketed to number one on the Irish album charts. O’Rourke is the first to admit that when Little Green Cars called it a day, she felt lost. But a career shift for the four musicians wasn’t in the cards – and Small Talk is self-evident proof, different than anything the group have released before, but carrying on its back all the things they’ve learned.
Wholly unafraid to admit her flaws and defiant in the face of the world’s misconceptions, O’Rourke litters the songs on Small Talk with tension, playing with the reliability of personal experience. While examining the intricacies of big subjects – religion versus science; good versus bad; fate versus choice – Small Talk also seeks to unpack O’Rourke’s own conditioning. Self-assuredness grapples with societal pressures, anger battles it out with contentment, and frustration with a divide – between personal relationships and the world at large – is ever-present.
“With feminism on one shoulder and trans-generational Catholic guilt on the other, it’s hard to find your way as an Irish woman,” O’Rourke says. “The truth is, I’ve found that process of deprogramming myself extremely hard, and now I lie somewhere between the past and future.
“Small Talk touches on many things: indulging in the darkness, while also trying to derive some meaning from it; on having no degree; on the way I sabotaged multiple relationships, or let my parents down. It’s about looking for resolution and revolution in sex and politics. It’s about being abused mentally and physically by the people you love the most, and in turn, abusing the people who love you. It’s about my first heartbreak at 14, how it’s still intrinsically a part of me and the shame and embarrassment that it brings. It’s about having something you thought was a sure thing, like your career, ripped out from underneath you. It’s also about the idea of optical virtue over the reality of how we treat those around us”.
Through all of this, the band never claim to be role models. Undeniably a coming-of-age record, Small Talk is a dazzling portrait of someone who isn’t afraid to hold the messy parts of herself up for questioning. Between tightly stacked percussion and effervescent, radio-ready melodies sit plain-spoken truths and the hard-learned lessons of a group still at the start of what is sure to be a long journey.
UNO MAS, the latest addition to explode onto the ever-popular indie pop scene, return with their brand new single ‘Glue’ which will be released on Friday 19th March and will be available to stream on all major streaming platforms.
UNO MAS create a contemporary sound with catchy lyrics and memorable melodies influenced by multiple genres including pop, indie, and rock. The bands charisma and stage presence bring their songs to life, creating an upbeat and bouncing atmosphere sure to leave any listener with a smile on their face, and songs stuck in their heads.
‘Glue’ is the latest offering to the bands ever growing catalogue of material and is a follow up from latest singles ‘Don’t You Know’, ‘Glass Houses’ & ‘Bored’, which landed the band radioplay from XS Manchester and BBC Introducing.
“'Glue' is about the need for that one special person. The one who everyone loves, they are ‘good as gold’ as the lyrics go, the one that really stands out. You meet them once and they ‘stick like glue’ and that's that, you're obsessed. You know you shouldn't be and you're being irrational in your head but you are obsessed. Everytime you see them it's like a drug, you're bothered, not yourself and all over the place but everytime they are gone you want more, which is why the chorus to 'Glue' refers to that person as the protagonist's ‘Demon’. The only hope is that they feel the same way. ‘Tell me girl what's your Demon? Because My Demon is you’." - Olly Thornton (Lead Singer).
The band’s debut single ‘Bored’, positively received all round and a staple piece of their recent live performances being used as their closing track finishing their sets with a bang. ‘Bored’ was heavily praised by Dave Monks at BBC Radio Merseyside and he continues to support the band through regular radio play, interviews, and providing the band with the opportunity to headline the world-famous Cavern Club in Liverpool. This was quickly followed by the release of their second single ‘Glass Houses’ which is a fan favourite and sing along from the moment they begin the opening verse. This was immediately picked up by Jim Salveson at Radio XS Manchester who playlisted the track earning it regular radio play throughout the following months. More recently the band released their third single ‘Don’t You Know’ which quickly gained the attention of multiple press outlets gaining air play on BBC Radio Merseyside and again being playlisted on XS Manchester.
The band continues to keep their fans engaged during this difficult time in the music industry from playing small acoustic gigs across the north west to beginning to book headline gigs and support slots for spring 2021. Fans and future listeners can catch the band at live performances scheduled around the north west, with some future dates yet to be announced, so keep up to date with their socials to see when they are playing near you!
'more than' is the new single by irisch pop artist bri - a powerful ballad where passion meets emptiness
Irish indie pop artist, Brí is releasing her fourth single 'More Than' on 19th March 2021 and with it is reaffirming her credentials as one of the most exciting artists around. With haunting drones and fragile strings Brí's vocal breaks through the cracks and delivers a heart stopping performance on top of a song that sonically builds to create a delicate but powerful ballad. With her debut album due later in October, it's another glimpse into what will surely be one of the most exciting releases of the year.
About 'More Than' Brí says..."More Than' is about craving more than the situation you currently find yourself in. It's a place where passion and emptiness meet, the point where two conflicting paths overlap and where all that is cloudy becomes clear."
Hailing from Offaly, Brí has previously released 3 singles, debut track, 'Low Supply', 'Polite' and 'Burying'. From the success gained from these releases she sold-out her own Whelan's headline show, received high praise from a multitude of blogs and radio and was selected to perform at Beatvyne's Music X Tech Experience. While 2020 saw performances from Brí at the esteemed Whelan's Ones to Watch, The Ruby Sessions, headliners in The Sound House, Spirit Store, festival line-up announcements such as Vantastival and the radio success of her recent releases, Brí hints at her debut album and a big year ahead in 2021.
With her fourth single 'More Than' Brí is determined to not let the chaos of the past year hold her back. About the process of the project Brí says 'My original plans for the visuals fell through due to travel restrictions. After a lot of waiting for restrictions to lift, I decided to direct my own music video and my local friend Constance Vance stepped in as my photographer, videographer and stylist. We discovered that she had talent to burn. The photos and video were shot at Charleville Castle, Tullamore.
In this music video, I long for more than my current situation as I struggle to sit with the spinning wheel which, for me, symbolises that 'groundhog day' feeling. Watching this video back reminded me that my passion for songwriting could never have been discovered if there wasn't firstly a struggle. The very action of writing a song to express this was my answer to feeling the passion and excitement in my life that I was craving. I love the simplicity of that.'
As well as homemade visuals, the vocals on this track were recorded in my bedroom due to restrictions. Darragh Nolan of Asta Kalapa studios in Wexford built magic around it as usual and my friend Aidan Mulloy lended his electric guitar skills once again. He also makes his debut bass performance on this track.'
Dublin based alternative-rock band Wild Tibetan Monks are set to release a heartfelt single, “Lying Next to You.” The nostalgic indie-rock song features semi-sweet vocals and a spacey instrumental arrangement that compliments the story being told. With a refrain that’s reflective and candid, the song builds to a driving bridge, and a somewhat unresolved close.
Sean says, “The song is about not just physically lying next to someone, but lying in not telling them the truth. It’s about feeling trapped, not knowing what to do. It’s about being conflicted, having all these emotions that you want to share with someone but can't.”
The song explores how difficult expression can be- even with someone who you truly care about. When things are good you think it’ll feel that way forever. Once your favourite toy, eventually you get put back on the shelf (“It really hurts since you put me down”).
The song closes with feelings of regret. Sean says, “The song depicts feeling conflicted about what you should say and what you should share. At the end of the song, there’s regret. The narrator knows they should have been honest, should have said how they felt, should have spilled their heart out.”
The song was written by bass player and vocalist Sean, who then brought it to the band. It was recorded in Hellfire Studios when the band returned from two years in Australia.
Wild Tibetan Monks are Sean (bass, vocals), Ringo (guitar), and Liam (drums). They met and banded in college in 2011 and performed together for several years. In 2018 the band traded Dublin for Perth, Australia for a two-year journey of music and exploration. The band toured around Western Australia, and had a varied lineup over the years, including different singers and a horn section. They also began recording their original music. The global pandemic forced the band to move back to Ireland, where they are now focused on recording and releasing their original material.