The internet is flooded with ‘best’ and ‘new’ songs, producers, and musicians every nano second. I feel the words are used so carelessly; what’s best and what’s new changes every time you blink, so the power of such a strong testimonial wanes when the next life-changing artist is supposedly discovered in the time you spent buttoning your shirt before going to work this morning. So, yes. When I say ‘Best New Artist’, I MEAN they are THE BEST NEW THING I HAVE HEARD IN A LONG TIME, and I listen to A LOT of things ALL THE TIME.
Anyone who knows me will tell you Annie Mac is the woman I idolise above every source of inspiration I have; I try and listen to every podcast of every show she broadcasts on BBC Radio 1. I write down the track listing, I study the sequence, I remember her introductions, descriptions, and validations, inhaling every recommendation she plays like a shameless duck. It’s called a productive girl crush.
So, yesterday, while listening to a recent podcast, I heard one song that blew the beat out of my heart. You know that feeling when the voice in your head goes ‘WHERE DID THIS COME FROM? I want to go back in time and be a part of the experience that inspired these words, this tune, and that voice!’ And then, if you’re lucky, the artist will remind you of another artist you love, while sounding completely original, and the neurons in your brain will twist and flip until you remember who, exactly, reminds you of THIS new guy.
When I heard Rationale singing ‘Fuel to the Fire’, my cranium went into hyper overdrive trying to place an uncanny and striking resemblance. I heard David Bowie’s arrogantly stunning baritone mixed with the feel and melancholy in Future Islands’ music. And then there was this new guy’s voice, still sounding fresh despite its familiarity, changing my very-receptive-to-change, world. There is a very deep pain in his sound, but it’s perfect because there’s blinding, hopeful power right along with it as he sings ‘Pressure, air keeps falling/ On my shoulders/ From what I know it/ Ain’t no justice/ In these moments/ But we’ll find comfort/ When kingdom comes’. His voice makes my spine feel like a separate entity, that’s how physical the effect is. I searched for the song on YouTube while getting ready for work this morning. It had clocked 70 views. Around noon, the number was 225. When I started typing this less than an hour ago I saw 4,285. As I finish, it says 5,367. Come on, CLICK on the link below and let’s help him hit a million. No one in the recent past has deserved it more.
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