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Discover The Music Review Mixtape Vol. 10

Music Review Mixtape 10 Harbour Loft - Today

Welcome to the Music Review Mixtape. In this feature, RCM staff writer Javier Rodriguez provides a round-up of the best new music submitted to our website. Today he introduces 6 new artists, with a short, snackable music review.

Λ N Λ S T Λ Z I Λ premieres the exhilarating song ‘Sun Is Low’

New York-based, Ukrainian-born Λ N Λ S T Λ Z I Λ made her debut this year, making some waves from day one thanks to her eclectic musical proposal. Generally depicted as a Dark-Pop performer, this uprising talent has crossed the limits established in this genre, surprising fans with a flamboyant production and stunning creativeness.

This tune conveys a beautiful message about self-sufficiency, succeeding at being the ultimate realization that no one can make you happy except yourself. Starting with shadowy ambient instrumentation and a meticulous wall of layered effects, Sun Is Low takes an unexpected turn, adding Latin rhythms; this uncommon combination creates an ideal yet intriguing sonic context, adorning this singer’s soothing siren voice.

Sun Is Low is a charming work of art that exhibits all the potential of this artist, and while this might be just the beginning, Λ N Λ S T Λ Z I Λ has more than enough tools in her musical arsenal to hopefully become a force to be reckoned with in the foreseeable future.

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Garvie worries too much in ‘Life’s Good’

Welcome to Garvie’s world, a realm where video games and reality intertwine to create music based on the experiences of this skilled Londoner. Taking advantage of his expertise in writing for other artists and his passion for gaming, this peculiar artist saw in the lockdowns an opportunity to start producing his own work, mixing two of his favorite things, the result is a captivating sound with a friendly approach and overall a very distinctive style that you won’t hear very often.

Described as a “feel-good anthem for pessimists’ Life’s Good is an infectious bopper illustrating Garvie’s difficulty at enjoying the present moment while creating fatalistic scenarios inside of his head, something ironic considering the fun nature of this track.

Embellished by 8-bit Gameboy synths, cheerful guitar passages, and happy vocal effects, Life’s Good is an immediate “cheat code” for a good time.

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Harbour Loft displays the cohesive effort in ‘Today’

The origin of Harbour Loft is one of those extraordinary circumstances that seemed like it was just meant to happen, with five friends from college deciding to form a band, working across different living rooms in Falmouth, with each member adding something unique to what’s been called a Loungepop supergroup, “not DIY enough to be bedroom pop but not mainstream enough to be commercial pop”.

Their debut album (also named Loungepop) is a notable landmark for Harbour Loft, consisting of seven well-rounded jammers, including the first single called Today.

To put it in simple terms, Today feels pretty much like the love child between R&B and Bedroom Pop, dissolving into a mixture of thoughtful arrays and a soaring chorus that evokes a majestic afternoon staring at the sunset.

Not only this track but the entire record delivers magnificently. Harbour Loft is a quintessential accompaniment for a chill evening with friends, losing yourself in its delightful anthems.

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Backyard Casino aims for greatness with ‘Silver Tongue’

With just three singles on their catalogue and three years of existence, British upcoming band Backyard Casino has already called the attention of significant media, for example, BBC Introducing, Radio Xtra, Unsigned Weekly, and Hive Radio, proving that this four-piece means serious business in their quest of bringing Rock & Roll back to the masses.

After the great response to the tracks Line By Line and Come Through With The Lighting, BYC has delivered Silver Tongue, a head-nodding banger executed spectacularly, featuring tight bass and drums, a vicious hook, bouncy guitars, and James McEwen’s assertive vocal performance, all of which work as a trip down memory lane to the 2000s, time when bands like the Libertines and The Arctic Monkeys reigned supreme.

Commercially speaking, rock might not be the hottest thing right now, but as long as new and exciting acts like Backyard Casino keep surging and aiming to bring it back, it certainly will be in good hands.

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Soft Wax brings chill vibes with ‘Over Me’

Currently, there is a plethora of artists wearing the DIY badge with pride, crafting art in circumstances that decades ago would be just impossible, one of those outfits is the duo of brothers known as Soft Wax, an independent act from Kent, UK, hitting already some big numbers on streaming services with their dreamy soundscapes transmitting pure emotion in their lyrics.

Over Me is their third single released this year, and just like its predecessors, this piece is full of 80s spectacularity, a decade that holds a special place in the heart of these musicians. Such influence is present in the feverish synths and hazy vocals, as well as the honest lyrical content tackling themes of heartbreak and conflicting thoughts, conceiving a compelling dynamic between the inherent catchiness of this composition and the more serious topics underneath.

Since their debut, Soft Wax’s ability to introduce old-school elements to their robust production has set them apart from the rest, being another great example of the proficiency in the DIY philosophy.

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Volléstad keeps the party going with ‘Never Meant To’

Volléstad has been on a roll over the last two years, positioning himself as one of the most thrilling new acts of his native Norway with his riveting collaborations and highly contagious EDM anthems.

Inspired by titans of the scene such as Avicii, Calvin Harris, and deadmau5, Volléstad is ready to take the world by storm and follow in the footsteps of his idols.

For this melody, Volléstad has teamed up with the multifaceted Canadian singer Bobby John, who does a marvellous job delivering the passionate lyrics, combined with a highly contagious rhythm, driving basslines, and engaging effects, all bursting into an unforgettable Dance hymn that will make you pump your fist high.

Never Meant To is what you would expect for a lively EDM piece and more, being a gem that fits on any club, party, or workout playlist.

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Words Javier Rodriguez