This Week's Must-Listen Singles: Alice Ivy, ROSALÍA, #1 Dads + more
Plus, all new singles - return singles, at that - from Jessie Ware and Dro Carey.
Every week, we're hammered with tonnes of new music from Australia and afar, so much so that at times, it feels a little overwhelming and you're not quite sure where to begin. Every week, we run down this week's must-listen singles and releases, this week featuring names like Alice Ivy, ROSALÍA, Dro Carey and more. Check out Pilerats' homepage for more brilliant music and news, or subscribe to our Spotify Office Playlist for easy listening.
Alice Ivy - Sunrise feat. Cadence Weapon
In the time since the release of her debut album I'm Dreaming, Alice Ivy has proved ten times over that she's one of the most versatile and forward-thinking names in Australian electronic, capable of adapting and crafting whatever pocket of electronic brilliance she aims to capture. She's teamed up with Jax Anderson - f.k.a. Flint Eastwood - and Ecca Vandal in the past few months, but her new single Sunrise takes her back to the hip-hop-tinged roots she quickly became recognised for, teaming up with rising rapper Cadence Weapon for a genre-bending collab that really keeps things fresh.
"When I started writing Sunrise it was the middle of the Australian winter," she says on the single but you couldn't guess that listening to Sunrise. It's a quirky and upbeat blend of Alice Ivy's trademark swirling electronica and the lyrical brilliance of Cadence Weapon; the latter-half of his name aptly presented amongst a flurry of synth bursts and vocal chops. "I wanted to write something that reminded me of summer, especially in Melbourne, which for me is all about having park beers with my friends in Edinburgh Gardens or being on a rooftop listening to music. When I showed Cadence the song in Toronto he was on the same wavelength and funnily enough Toronto had one of the hottest weeks on record, so that's how Sunrise was born!"
ROSALÍA - A Palé
There's no artist in the commercial spotlight quite like ROSALÍA. This week marked the one-year anniversary of her landmark. sound-defining album El Mal Querer and while the artist has continued to be at the top of her game since - she's put out several of this year's best songs - it seems like she's consistently defying herself with every track. There was the J Balvin cross-over hit Con Altura, followed by Aute Cuture, Milionària and the romantic, Ozuna-assisted Yo x Ti, Tu x Mi, which today, gets a joined by a gritty take of ROSALÍA's flamenco in A Palé.
Opening with a subtle vocal and soft, swirling synth, it doesn't take long for A Palé to quickly descend into chaos, with a snapping production bursting out of nowhere alongside commanding bass kicks and hand claps; in which ROSALÍA showcases her strengths over the top. It's a dark and ferocious turn from her past work that sees her trademark vocal reduced a few octaves into something more menacing and hip-hop-esque, showcasing the versatility of one of the strongest performers in the world.
#1 Dads - Another Day
It's been a while since we've last heard from #1 Dads, but at the same time, not too long at all. As the solo project of Tom Iansek, it's been five years since we last heard solo material from #1 Dads, whose 2014 album was not just monumental is aiding the progression of Australia's subtle indie world, but also for platforming a couple of then-emerging musicians now amongst our most exciting: Ainslie Wills, Airling and Tom Snowdon. However, Iansek is also one-half of No Mono (alongside Snowdon), so while the absence of #1 Dads has been felt over the years, it hasn't exactly been for nothing.
This week, however, marks the rearrival of the project and with it, news of Iansek's first solo work in a long, long time - Another Day. It's a brooding return from the master himself, arriving with a completely self-made video clip that for the Big Scary frontman, extends from the single's DIY creation: "It's a bit of an anti-video clip video clip. I wanted to see how far I could go with as little as possible," he says. "The music-making process followed this ethos in a way too, perhaps it is an extension of that." Catch his return at Falls Festival this New Year's, and a special one-off Melbourne show on December 20th.
Dro Carey - Act Like You're Home feat. Beni Moun & Julietta
Speaking of a small while between drinks, Dro Carey also marked his re-arrival this week. In the time since his sound-defining 2016 EP Dark Zoo, Dro Carey has continually broken the mould for Australian electronica and its intersection with other pockets of music, whether it's working with Cadell & Chocolate on the grime-y comeback Elevate; Taliwhoah and Genesis Owusu on the upbeat, R&B-intertwined Glow Now; or Atmosphere, where he brought together some of the country's most exciting names in rap music - Kwame, Raj Mahal and Renz.
Now, he's back with a two-side release that continues to showcase his charm. The first track, Act Like You're Home, is a spiralling house number lifted to the next level by collaborators Beni Moun and Julietta - who both add an almost-nostalgic 80s pop-house twist on the single, while the second track - Hemisphere - sees Dro Carey take the wheel on a solo level; his masterful craft as a producer in the spotlight as he details a long-winding, three-minutes thirty of lo-fi house sprinkled with elements of jazz, UK garage and beyond.
Jessie Ware - Mirage (Don't Stop)
Admittedly we weren't incredibly across Jessie Ware from her past work - her third album Glasshouse got a play here and there, but she's seemingly yet to really enter the AU/NZ market - but the past few songs she's been putting out have been gold. There was Overtime, which saw her take on a heaving house beat amongst the year's strongest, before she somehow one-upped herself again with Adore You, a romanticised take on her house-pop sound worked on alongside Joseph Mount, from Metronomy fame and a big driver of Robyn's returning record Honey.
Her new single Mirage (Don't Stop) keeps the momentum going. It's a sizzling pop-house number that plucks from the realms of Donna Summer and Giorgio Moroder, welcoming an old-school 80s touch on her refined sound that firmly holds itself in 2019. Brilliant stuff once again.