think about these tracks [single reviews]
Copeland – “Pope”: This song isn’t going to be like the others in this write up, so bear with me. I saw a tweet the other day that quoted the link to this song and asked “How do they do it?” How, indeed Mr. Sugars (check out his band Church Tongue). If you feel like being bathed in layers of orchestral good feels and relaxation, this song is for you. This song is endearing. I’m 6’3″ and nearly 230 pounds and when I heard that brief monologue, I melted a bit—and not because it’s sappy. As the phrase “This world is not real” echoes to fade the song out, I realize that this song must be inspired by Inception, one of my favorite movies. Let’s stay in this dream, eh?
DBMK – “Rot”: Listen to that piano/synth melody overlay and I dare you not to be instantaneously in a good mood. It almost doesn’t matter what follows—that mood is that jolting and contagious. After a verse of Kyle Knudsen’s trademark flow, we hop right into a chorus that might be the most soaring of the band’s catalog—right up there with “Heartscam” and “Analog Boy.” There’s also just the right amount of angst injected in there. DBMK knows that a little bit of inflection can add a lot of depth to an otherwise straightforward song.
Letrainiump – “Think”: At least in my world, “Think” is the long-awaited second single from New Orleans based synthpop artist Letrainiump. If you’ve ever seen him perform, listening to this song will make it nearly impossible not to picture him swaying to the beat while singing. This song began as a collaboration between him and fellow indie pop rockers Royal Teeth, who you may have heard of. The guitar work really shines through here, shimmering elements of The 1975 without plagiarizing. Also, he has some of the most dynamic vocals in the game—so listen up!
P2I – “Little Dreams”: Formerly known as Partners in Irony, the collective known as P2I is ready to slam the Cbus scene with some fire. Listening to this single, the first release after the duo’s rebranding, it comes across as a mission statement of sorts. I’m not as well versed in hip-hop culture as many of my peers, so I can’t comment accurately on context here, but I found myself getting into this hook and taking heed when there was a break in the beats—that’s when you really should pay attention to what they’re saying.
LNYX – “Send Help” – The EDM/pop duo returns with a soaring single set to send you to the stratosphere. It feels like a fitting follow up to “This Is Not the End,” yet even for LNYX the marked contrast between the verse, chorus, and climactic breakdown overlaying the second chorus is almost jarring. Any more contrast in the transition might make it difficult to listen to, but they stop just soon enough to keep my mind in the “that feels good” range. An analogy I would use is a plane breaking the sound barrier. There’s a sonic boom, but it has a purpose—and you welcome it.
Paola Proctor – “Can’t Help Myself”: For Nashville, this is a unique sort of pop. A little more soul. A little more attitude. One gets the sense you wouldn’t want to get in Paola’s way while listening. A gnarly little breakdown after the chorus—complete with handclaps—gives me the impression it would be a heck of a live song. I hope to be hearing a lot more about this artist in the Nashville scene and beyond soon! Oh, and for those of you who feel the market is oversaturated by synthpop—the lead here is a cello.
The Accidentals – “Heavy Flag”: Earlier this year, I had the chance to see The Accidentals play a pop heavy showcase put on by Sony Music in a dreamy world they created at SXSW. Now, how does a folk-rock trio fit in this context? Listen to “Heavy Flag” and you’ll get it. The ingredients are organic and natural, but the result and the lyricism is transcendent and effervescent—even with the weighty subject matter. I wish I knew this song so I could go back and hear it live again (probably—I’d bet money they played it). This is a band that would fit on a bill with either Sufjan Stevens or Imagine Dragons, and you can’t say that about many artists.
Hear all of these songs and more on our New and Nifty playlist, embedded below: