Digging For Diamonds: Your Fortnightly Recap Of Hidden Music Gems
Highlighting all those hidden gems you may have missed from the past fortnight in music.
Digging for Diamonds is a bi-weekly wrap-up dedicated to highlighting all those hidden gems you may have missed from the weeks just passed. Shining some much-needed light on a handful of tracks that have for whatever reason, possibly fallen through the cracks, no artist is too big or too small. From indie-rock to hip-hop, rap and folk, there is no genre snubbing here.
Feed Me - Crazy Maybe feat. Kill The Noise & Anjuli
Pulled straight from Feed Me’s new 5 track EP titled Existential Crisis, this collaboration with Kill The Noise and Anjulia is everything you’d want from the Sotto Voce don (Feed Me’s label). From the hauntingly beautiful vocal courtesy of Anjulia to the at times psy-like hard hitting beat, Jon Gooch has a nack for producing quality hard-hitting electronic music... Or rather, music with teeth.
The Aces - Baby Who
If you’re sick of summery songs about breakups, then you best move on to my next selection as this new cut from four-piece Utah soft-rock group The Aces’ debut (I Don’t Like Being Honest out June 23rd) is tinged with said story. Courtesy of an interview with The Fader on their new song Baby Who, The Aces said "Baby Who is about not needing anyone or anything but yourself to be happy. A lot of people think Baby Who is about a person or specifically a relationship, but for us, it's about overcoming anything in your life that's holding you back." Back story aside, Baby Who is an incredibly alluring fusion of soft-rock and pop. Taken from their debut, its summer-tinged guitars and fragile vocals combine for a groove that screams festival season.
Nocturnal Tapes - Is It Too Late?
You’d be excused for thinking this was something from everyone’s favourites RÜFÜS / RÜFÜS DU SOL, as it channels the exact vibe. Sound wise, there isn’t much different or new going on here, but perhaps that’s what is so great about Nocturnal Tapes’ forthcoming EP’s lead single. With guitars that are smooth yet hold a ton of flair, and synth work that has mirrored applause by similar sounding acts, Nocturnal Tapes are name you perhaps may wish keep tabs on.
King Henry - Happy Days
Drawing inspiration from KAYTRANADA, King Henry has given us one incredibly catchy disco jam. Sampling African-singer Letta Mblulu, although not an official release, the L.A native who has since done work on Beyonce’s masterpiece Lemonade, continues to showcase his diverse talents as a producer with Happy Days.
Hayden Calnin - Waves
From the second you hear Waves, I love how clearly you can define the influences Hayden Calnin is channelling. It’s M83, James Blake and Bon Iver all wrapped up into one, a love child some would say. From its sound to its lyrics, Waves is an incredibly mesmerising piece of music. Yet to hear or a read a single bad thing about this cut from the Melbourne singer/songwriter/producer’s debut EP Dirt (which is due for release later this month, June 30th). Although every track I’ve selected here is great, if I was to swear by one track this week, then let it be Waves. Add this to your library folks!
Scumdrops - Sun’s Out // Gun’s Out
Yes, Scumdrops’ Sun’s Out // Gun’s Out was released earlier this year as part of a three-track EP titled Sun’s Out, but it has only just now come to my attention having since been uploaded to triple j’s Unearthed. Straight to the point, if it were the early ‘90s. Cram a bunch of die-hard punk kids into a surf shack with Sun’s Out // Gun’s Out blaring, you’d have the set the perfect scene for this garage number courtesy of the Newcastle three-piece.
Berlin Bar Hounds - Skeleton
Another somewhat dated inclusion with Skeleton having first appeared online over a year ago. That said, former Jinja Safari drummer, Jacob Borg, and his side project Berlin Bar Hounds have created something rather special. An amalgamation of that nurturing vocal (which in certain sections mirrors that of Matt Berninger from The National) plus some crafty guitar work and a commanding, yet simple synth combine to make this one absolutely incredible sounding piece of music. I wish I had have known about Skeleton earlier, but none the less, this is another one of my favourite discoveries of the past fortnight (even though it’s a year old).
Anna Of The North - Lovers
The fact Norwegian duo Anna Of The North as still relatively unknown still has me baffled. The world, people and lovers of music should pay attention to music blogs a lot more as Anna Of The North feel like one of music’s best-kept secrets, even though they have been laying right in front of our eyes and ears with a swagger of greatness. Yes, I may be a little biased but I can confidently say that the Norwegian act has yet to step a foot wrong in my eyes. First jumping on board upon hearing The Dreamer in 2016, they then followed it up with Baby and Us, solidifying their status as one’s to watch. Earlier this year they gifted us the twinkly synth-heavy Oslo, arguably their best piece of work to date. This week the Anna Of The North camp spun into somewhat of an overdrive, with finally some solid news on their much-anticipated debut album. Titled Lovers, their debut album is due for release later this year on September 8. Accompanying the album news, Anna Of The North have also shared the record’s title track. Uplifting and warm, the track showcases a continuous growth in the duo’s production and sound and the excitement for this debut continues to grow.
Lycoriscoris - Lush
At the heart of writing and putting together this column every fortnight, lay the reasoning behind why I’ve picked and fallen in love with this track. Putting aside the fact that it’s an incredible piece of electronic music for the moment, feel free to @ me if I’m wrong but I don’t think a single one of you would have come across this track be it not for this weeks Digging For Diamonds. Making his debut on Anjunabeats sub-label Anjunadeep, Japanese producer Lycoriscoris aka Yunosuke Senoo has shared a six track EP titled Drop, that ventures some amazing eclectic tones. To highlight the word again, this is perhaps one of the most eclectic releases I think I’ve ever come across that Anjunadeep has put out. What I think Lycoriscoris’ release has stuck is that not only does it hold some very enticing eclectic tones, it also channels those deep house tendencies that Anjunadeep continues to find and promote. All of the EP’s six tracks are incredible, but to highlight three more, then look no further than title track Drop, Her and MSK.
Haiku Hands - Not About You
This track was uploaded to triple j’s Unearthed yesterday and it’s already drawing incredible praise. To put bluntly, this thing is the definition of the word banger. It’s hard-hitting, yet simple club beat is backed by vocals that mirror M.I.A and at certain times that of Die Antwoord’s Yolandi Visser in that they are gritty, and all up in your face. I absolutely love this track, and I cannot wait for more people to catch onto it. A comparison to one of 2016’s most buzzed about acts in Confidence Man has been drawn and I can’t water that down. Haiku Hands’ Not About You has all the attributes to be 2017’s Boyfriend moment. (Oh and just because I can, here is that glorious Boyfriend moment from Golden Plains 2017).