Introducing Eriel Indigo

Introducing Eriel Indigo

The best thing about being part of Music Eyz is the music we get exposed to. Because we don’t just go for your big names or chase likes and followers, we get access to some of the emerging music that many in the UK will overlook.

Eriel Indigo is a perfect example of that.  No record deal, no fancy producers or collaborations Eriel Indigo is doing this the hard way.  The fact that her debut single Innocence was released in November 2014 and only now do we get her follow-up Every Little Thing, shows she is doing it herself.  She now has some help in the shape of partner in crime Johnny What, who helps with production on her forthcoming EP Elevate.

Introducing Eriel Indigo

Introducing Eriel Indigo

Every Little Thing is a proper pop banger.  Using some of the latest EDM pop production, overlayed with some lovely simple touches such as the synthesised hand click and some nice beats, this should be a commercial success.  Despite her Ellie Goulding style vocals, Eriel feels really authentic and I believe with the right promotion could be One To Watch.

Eriel herself took a quick minute to tell Music Eyz a bit about her:

“I suppose my music and art inherited quite a bit from my upbringing,” explains Eriel. “Sound healing and revolution are in my blood. I was raised in an environment of outlaws and I learned to question everything, all the while acknowledging our innate connection to each other, to all beings and all things.

Seriously, you all need to hear this and show your support. Lets get some of these non-label concept artists out there and give music back to the people.  Eriel Indigo we are with you and will support your rise in the industry.

Introducing J Sutta

Introducing J Sutta

We have the delight in introducing J Sutta to you. Now some of you may know or recognise her, after all, she isn’t new to the music industry.  J Sutta is a former member of the huge US girl group The Pussycat Dolls.  She also scored a number one billboard hit with debut solo single Show Me.

Review of Forever by J Sutta

Review of Forever by J Sutta

So although J Sutta does have some pedigree, she is new to most of us in the UK.  So with this in mind, we have the pleasure of bringing to you her new single Forever.  It is a great up beat mainstream dance track which showcases J Sutta‘s vocal ability.  The former Pussycat Doll delivers some lovely vocals with pretty good range, showing she was more than just a bit part of the supergroup.

J Sutta said of Forever:

Think of the happiest moment you have ever experienced. The most love filled, joyful high you can imagine. We have all had glimpses of that kind of euphoria at some point right? What is the thought that comes to mind when you are there at the pinnacle of that high? That is what “Forever” is about.

Forever is on J Sutta‘s debut album, which is reaching completion.  The album called Feline Resurrection features production from the likes of Pitbull and Meek Mill.  The album promises to be a blend of Hip Hop, RnB, EDM and dance.  The album is due for release next month (March).

If you like your pop dance, then Forever is one for you, take a listen and let us know what you think. Hopefully, you will like it as much as us.

 

Opus by Eric Prydz (Album Review)

Review of Opus by Eric Prydz

So Eric Prydz is finally releasing his debut album.  Yes the majority of people that don’t closely follow the Swedish DJ/Producer will probably be surprised he hasn’t done so already. such is the strength of his previous track releases.

Review of Opus by Eric Prydz

Review of Opus by Eric Prydz

The 2004 release of Call On Me was probably the defining moment in terms of mainstream commercial breakthrough for Eric Prydz.  The track was a massive hit and utilised a Steve Winwood sample as its key component.  This was followed two years later by Proper Education which shamelessly utilised Pink Floyd as its anchor.

All of the notable work of Eric Prydz in the past has been proper commercial robbery of previous classics with an aim to capture the ears of an enthusiastic teen to early twenties audience.  Adding some pretty simple beat structures and the hits rolled in.  As the title, Opus, suggests this album is meant to be an attempt to show his skills as a producer and move away from his previous cookie cutter hits.

Whilst there are glimpses of serious production techniques and a move away from mainstream dance, the album does little to convince me to change my opinion.  Granted its no David Guetta album, but nobody else could be that cheesy.

Whilst that last paragraph feels scathing to read back and I suppose given the context of the album it probably is.  But, what I am essentially saying is, I think Eric Prydz has still produced an album that will commercially do well.  HIs light commercial techno and methodical approach to production will still appeal to the same audience.  However, will yo go mental to it at a party or serious dance festival? No.  Will you listen to it in the car or hear it at the high-school prom, probably yes.

Opus was an attempt to move Eric Prydz away from production by numbers, but in essence has just cemented his place in modern music.  Eric Prydz, embrace it, take the cash and buy yourself a new Mac for your efforts.

Introducing Ink Project

Introducing Ink Project

Many of you may be unaware of Ink Project, but they represent something pretty unique in the current industry. Jez Lloyd is a leading producer and instrumentalist and he leaves his feel all over the Ink Project. He is ably aided by vocalist Melanie Dymond who provides a distinctive tone that offers real standout.

Everything Change by Ink Project

Everything Change by Ink Project

The duo had much success with their debut album Inside The Sun.  After serious airplay from the likes of Giles Peterson, Radio 6 and Radio One, they stole the imagination of critics and music fans alike.  The Ink Project are now back with their second album Satellite On and we have got our hands on the first track Everything Change.

Everything Change was as much of a clash of noise as it was a magical cocktail of audio pleasure.  Jaunty instruments, electronic hints and percussion shaking leads to produce a great experimental type sound.  Add to that Melanie Dymond‘s stunning vocal delivery and we have a track that pulls you in and forces you to listen.  There is no “just leaving it to play in the background”.

Now Everything Change by Ink Project will definitely not be for everybody. It will challenge you and your traditional views of music, but that is only a good thing.

I implore you to listen and give Everything Change a chance with an open mind. I promise you will not regret it.

Premiere – Swear by Miss Krystle

Swear by Miss Krystle A Music Eyz Premiere

As all our regular Music Eyz readers will testify, there is nothing we love more than new music.  With this in mind, we love an exclusive even more.  Arizona based single Miss Krystle has partnered with Music Eyz to Premiere her new track Swear.

Swear Single Cover - Miss Krystle

Swear by Miss Krystle

The single delivers hard beats and some great vocals with a genuine pop feel.  Add to that a great hook and Swear, the first single from Miss Krystle‘s new album Woman In Motion.  The album promises a real mix of pop tracks and some bangers with Miss Krystle exploring deeper and harder vocals.

The video for Swear shows Miss Krystle as equally at home in her bedroom as she is doing a fitness routine in her sweats.

There is genuinely something about Swear and Miss Krystle that sets this out from a lot of the current female pop vocalists out there.  With the right promotion, we could have a new face on the block.

Begin by Lion Babe (Album Review)

Review of Begin by Lion Babe

With all the noise surrounding the release of Rihanna’s Anti album and the hype of Zayn Malik’s Pillowtalk and an incredible album has been released and gone pretty much undetected.  Begin is the debut album of Brooklyn pair Lion Babe (Jillian Hervey and Lucas Goodman).

Lion Babe Album shot from boohoo

Review of Begin by Lion Babe

I interviewed Vanessa and Lucas on the shoot of the latest boohoo.com TV ad and the duo were among the nicest people I have ever met in music, really humble and unassuming.  The way Lucas talks about the creation process and how Lion Babe came about is refreshingly honest. 

Their style, genre or music is hard to categorise, but listening to Begin and talking to the duo, there are heavy influences from the 70s and obviously the golden age of Soul.  The Temptations like sounds and samples are testament to this on Stressed Out.  The throwback style continues on Treat Me Like Fire where Jillian (daughter of Vanessa Williams) delivers great vocals but is supported by superb production from Lucas, including the crackly but authentic vinyl sound.

Of course the album features some sure-fire commercial hits such as Where Do We Go the track on the latest boohoo ad.  Its an upbeat number, almost out of sync with the overall direction of the duo, but containing a great pop hook.

Overall the album is an accomplished production.  Jillian has massive energy and passion in her vocals, probably driven by her energy as a dancer and determination to succeed.  This is fuelled by world-class production from Lucas which uses some amazing beats, some Prince like twists and of course plenty of references to a day gone by.

Overall, I ask you all to take a listen to Begin.  I am sure you will love this debut album by Lion Babe as much as I do.  As much as anything, it will give you a break from all the Rihanna and Zayn hype.

Introducing Mason and FortuneWest

Introducing Mason and Fortune West

Flaws is the first track from the forthcoming Gods We Were from Mason and producer FortuneWest.  Flaws is an uplifting number that tells the story of a young lad that is working hard to overcome the obstacles put in his way and his determination to overcome his own weaknesses.

Flaws by Mason and FortuneWest

Flaws by Mason and FortuneWest

The production is quality and Mason delivers his lyrics in a bit of a retro style.  Old Skool Hip Hop heads will remember Pharcyde and whilst this isn’t a copy there is something in his delivery that triggers the She Keeps On Passin Me By vibe in my head.

I really like Flaws and if this is a sign of things to come from the duo, I can’t wait to hear their EP.

Have a listen and let us know what you think.

My Top 5 – Paul Danan

My Top 5 – Paul Danan

My Top 5 by Paul Danan

My Top 5 by Paul Danan

Hollyoaks is just one of those that has been around for years, but never seems old.  One of the cast members from years ago, Paul Danan spends some time with Music Eyz and gives us his Top 5 tracks at the moment.

1 Voodoo Child by Jimi Hendrix
2 Black by Pearl Jam
3 Your Love is King by Sade
4 Hit Em Up by TuPac
5 Their Law by The Prodigy

The reason I have chosen these songs is because I still love them to this day.  I could never get bored of them, after all, they do something to me when I listen to them.  They excite me and just remind me of my youth.

So I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

 

Anti by Rihanna (Album Review)

Review of Anti by Rihanna

After a very long wait, Rihanna finally gave the world what they have been waiting for (well what seems like the entire social sphere anyway).  Not since 2012 have we been treated to an album of new material from Rihanna, and our Bajan beauty hasn’t let us down with Anti.

Review of Anti by Rihanna

Review of Anti by Rihanna

After “apparent” singles such as the brilliant Bitch Better Have My Money, Rihanna finally delivers her body of music, albeit a little early thanks to a leak.  The complete sound is a bit different and feels a bit more focussed and mature as Rihanna develops as an artist.  After such a long wait and due to the fanfare it feels only right we give a full review and dissect track by track, so here goes.

Close To You

A heartelt, stripped back almost acoustic track.  The lyrics an Rihanna’s delivery are sympathetic to the emotion that is being portrayed and the beautiful piano accompaniment draws the listener in.  This track really showcases the fact that despite all of Rihanna’s bravado, she does in fact have a beautiful voice.

Consideration

Consideration starts with distorted and dirty beats.  Rihanna enters the fray with more of a Pom De Replay feel.  Her distinct cajan twang flies through.  The whole thing is a mix of styles and shows Rihanna in a positive light in what seems to be a relationship that may be one sided (and not in her favour). I actually really love this as a piece of music and is much closer to the style of Rihanna I think makes her unique.

Desperado

Deep beats that wouldn’t be a miss and some pretty serious sounding Rihanna vocals result in a rather serious track.  Desperado discusses Rihanna not really liking her situation but also being openly honest about not liking the thought of being on her own.  Really well produced track that is obviously laced with meaning for Rihanna.

Higher

Starts with a slow yet upbeat, electronically treated backing track.  Rihanna’s distinctive vocal kicks in with an emotionally fuelled delivery.  Now whether or not this is the production version I have, but her vocal seems to get stretched in parts (maybe deliberately) but it does get uncomfortable at times.  Not a stronger interlude for me.

James Joints

This one kicks off with a bit of a slow, almost hallucinogenic opening and even talks about smoking weed right from the off.  Rihanna uniquely includes her “industrial language” in this short interlude, which does however have a nice feel to it.

Kiss It Better

Opens with a guitar rift that wouldn’t be out of place in a surreal scene in Bill and Ted movies.  Accompanied by a simple retro sound throughout, Rihanna uses her vocal with great effect to lift the whole thing.  What feels like a definite single, this one has genuine commercial appeal.

Love on the Brain

The great intro sets you up for a lovely retro love song.  Rihanna then pitches her vocal perfectly and feels like an old Motown singer, accompanied by the occasional male backing vocal.  The pitch does change at moments as Rihanna’s attitude to lift the whole thing above a standard ballad.  The lyrics do that as well of course.

Needed Me

A weird electronic opening which sounds a little like a dog barking, breaks to a Hip Hop intro. Then Rihanna puts it in hard both lyrically and vocally.  This one she is pissed off and she will let you all know.  The backing could be distracting and over produced but you forgive that when Rihanna kicks in and belts out her vocal.

Never Ending

Starts with a lovely musically start, real low key and Rihanna’s vocal is pitched in a lovely way.  Really stripped back track that again borders on acoustic.

Same Ol’ Mistakes

Serious opening with funk laced beat and retro synth playing. This is one of the longest tracks on the album at over six minutes.  This will definitely be a fans’ favourite. Brilliantly produced with many levels in the track.  Rihanna again delivers brilliant vocals which over-run each other.  This is definitely one the highlights of the album in terms of commercial air play but also a triumph for the production team.

Woo

Woo is a great example of the eclectic nature of the album.  Unusual opening musically and the actually Woo to kick off is a great false opening in to what to expect.  Rihanna thunders in with strong vocals to change the pace.  The vocals have some weird effects on them as the track develops, but the whole thing hangs together.  Maybe just me, but I expected more of a beat to kick in and earlier.  Sadly I think it has the makings of a great track but it falls short.  I know I will eat my words as this will sell millions and after more listens I will love it. That’s the troublle with reviewing on first listen

Work

Now we all know this one.  Feels almost pointless reviewing as you all know this is a pure banger.  A bit of electronic feel but with a good dancehall touch to Rihanna’s vocal.  Simply a great track and one I know all Rihanna fans just love.

Yeah, I Said It

A slow opener to the track with Rihanna providing hushed vocals, yet somehow still delivering amazing ability. 

The album overall feels like a collective of great songs.  A few bangers and some obvious commercial hits, however it doesn’t feel necessarily like an album.  Not an issue in the sense there is good music and this is bound to fly.  Overall its a bit slower and more controlled than previous albums, which in my opinion is good.

This Is Acting by Sia (Album Review)

Review of This Is Acting by Sia

Sia is one of those underrated names in music at the moment.  The maker of some great pop tracks, she is often overlooked in terms of gongs and critical acclaim.  This could be in no small part to her apparent unwillingness to play the game.  She isn’t at every red carpet show, she isn’t constantly in the celeb pages of the Daily Mail or the Metro.  More importantly she hasn’t had a consistent flow of music.

Review of This is Acting by Sia

Review of This is Acting by Sia

This inconsistency in release I suspect is down to musical reasons as opposed to management or label politics.  I get the sense that Sia releases what she wants and when she wants it.  This Is Acting feels like testimony to that sentiment, as it genuinely feels like a body of work by Sia for Sia.  This is certainly a collective of work that should put her right at the forefront of people’s minds again as a singer, rather than purely a writer.

Sia has recently penned hits for the likes of Rihanna, Kylie and Beyonce, showing that she understands what it takes to make a big commercial tune, whilst producing content of credibility for artists of different styles and demands.

Unbelievably This Is Acting is Sia’s seventh studio album.  However there is something a little different to this one.  Sia is well respected if not eulogised about.  She has a good fan base, but not huge and her previous albums have gained good sales, but not great.  However This Is Acting feels like a bit of a turning point.  Sia appears to have soaked up everything she has learned and how she has developed as an artist.  She seems to have brought the experience and insight from working with the pop A-listers such as Rihanna and Beyonce to fruit in this collection.

The whole feel of This Is Acting is big.  The production feels good, the vocals are on-point and the whole listening experience should feels to be at a slightly higher and dare I say it, more commercial level.  This isn’t to say her previous efforts haven’t been great, because they have, this just feels strong and in the moment and with good promotion and PR, Sia should be on to a winner.

Jesse Shatkin returns to the fold on This Is Acting.  Jesse produced the amazing Chandelier for Sia, the huge Grammy nominated hit, that featured highs and lows, quiets elements using the pitch and volume for dramatic effect.  Shatkin also managed to unearth one of the best vocal performances from Sia in a track, something that has manifested itself in This Is Acting’s lead single Alive, a song co-wrote by Adele.  The track ends in drama and plays on the feeling of Chandelier.

This feeling of drama spreads throughout the album.  The title itself This Is Acting offers a little clue as to Sia’s state of mind while making the album.  This is definitely to the heartfelt look in to her soul that Adele offers on her music, this is acting. Not an autobiography, not a commentary on her life, love or relationships.

While we believe in Sia’s assertion that this is not a look at her under a microscope, you can’t help but feel that there are hints to her own personal perspective when producing the tracks.  Stand-out track Cheap Thrills is possibly the best example of this.  Not that we are suggesting that Sia is out for some cheap thrills, as the track doesn’t necessarily mean that either.  It is a bit more of an upbeat dance, latin number that wouldn’t feel out of place on a Shakira album.  Its all about putting on your game face or your going out face. Put on the slap and your smile and hit the dancefloor, regardless of whats going on and show everybody what a great time you’re having.

Throughout the album Sia demonstrates the same well executed vocals that have laced her biggest tracks, strong and vocally arresting.  However, musically the album doesn’t feel as polished and high calibre as her vocal deserves. What this does feel like is that the music is created to provide Sia with some big sellers, a boast she has yet to achieve.

The previous paragraph may now feel like a bit of a contradiction to the average reader. However, I still maintain that This Is Acting is a record by Sia for Sia.  I think she has recognised all the hard work she has put in to the industry and her art and decided, now is the time to get the recognition and the commercial success to enable her to live comfortably and be seen as more than just a fantastic writer.

As negative as that previous paragraph may sound, it actually isn’t.  Sia has made a great album. The album is a pop album, with great soulful vocals, which uses pop hooks and production.  The masses should love it, the critics will enjoy it and Sia, may take some of the fanbase from the likes of Rihanna and Beyonce.  This Is Acting is a very good pop album.