This week’s must listen singles: CXLOE, Bene, No Mono + more
Plus, new singles from The Teskey Brothers and rising star Tones and I.
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 Bene, Tones and I, The Teskey Brothers and more. Check out Pilerats' homepage for more brilliant music and news, or subscribe to our Spotify Office Playlist for easy listening.
CXLOE – Low Blow
Getting ready for her Australian tour is young, Sydney-based electro-pop star CXLOE, who has recently released her latest track, Low Blow. This young artist has been releasing powerful tracks like I Can’t Have Nice Things and Show You and is now becoming known as an artist that combines alternative and electronic sounds driven by her strong vocals that are being defined as ‘dark-pop’. She’s being known worldwide, featuring on Spotify’s New Music Friday playlist in 21 countries as well as being shuffled frequently on Australian radio stations. Although Low Blow sounds like her usual songs, the lyrics steer clear from the emotional statements she would make about love and instead comments on the music industry and how it is so flexible with artists. It touches on the harsh reality of being a musician in 2019, where artists can be blind-sided and may struggle to keep up with the ever-changing ‘rules’ of the game. CXLOE goes on to say that "Low Blow was written after a few personal encounters that left me feeling gutted, and unfairly hit below the belt, a tactic Hollywood is very familiar with. Especially in the music industry, you leave yourself vulnerable, and in this instance an easy target. I was left feeling dumbfounded and shocked. I was caught so off guard by this that my emotions made me come across as dramatic and as referred to in the lyrics as 'psycho'.” She continues, “I channel this in the song and refer to a relationship where it’s one-sided and only wanted on their terms. A low blow.” Embrace just how well she executes these feelings in her latest track, Low Blow.
Bene – Evil Spider
After showering listeners with her previous release this year, Soaked (excuse the pun) - which is currently sitting at over 16 million plays on Spotify - Bene is giving us another taste of what she’s about with Evil Spider. The New Zealand musician on the rise managed to climb the charts over the past six months and gain the attention she well and truly deserves and with her latest single, she’s definitely embracing it. Evil Spider has a bit of a lighter sense to it, trickling with round distorted guitar strums and traces of descending high notes found in the chorus giving this track a subtle bounciness to it. Her soft vocals are inviting and warm and if you’d only read the title, you’d have been expecting something much heavier. However, the title is almost contradicted when you hear the steadiness and almost melancholic tones within the song. The 19-year-old has said that Evil Spider is “about wanting someone that's already taken. When writing the song, I didn't wanna make the lyrics too obviously evil, so I thought I'd turn myself into the spider, making it a lil lighter and making the song revolve around me weaving webs to lure the person, catch ‘em like a spider then reel them in. I remember humming Incy Wincy Spider in the studio, which inspired the playful vibe of the song." Get trapped in this one below:
No Mono – Keep On
No Mono’s interesting and unique sound is something never really heard before, but one that seems to constantly impress. They released Islands Part 1 last year, which included nine tracks of easy listening electronica and have now teased the second part of the album with their latest single, Keep On. Tom Snowdon and Tom Iansek, the two halves that make up No Mono, have created a very James Blake-esque sound that is embellished with cleverly placed guitar riffs and complementary rich piano chords. It almost sounds experimental, and like it could be a part of a soundtrack for a futuristic dystopian movie, and even manages to incorporate vocals that echo throughout the song and gives that eerie nature to the song. The song is a teaser to a project that will fully reveal the sound that is No Mono, so be sure to keep a lookout for them as they play at Splendour in the Grass this year and check out Keep On below:
Tones and I – Dance Monkey
Toni Watson - or Tones and I as she’s more predominantly known as - could be the next big thing to come out of busking. Before she had even properly released anything, she was infecting the ears of those that would stop and listen, whether it be along Bourke Street in Melbourne or at her new home of Byron Bay. She dropped powerhouse track Johnny Run Away earlier this year and had won over the hearts of many with its emotional narrative, not to mention her unique vocal style. She’s a singer-songwriter that has been selling out shows nationally and is now making everyone know she’s on an upwards course with her music with the latest release, Dance Monkey. The track has a sense of determination about it and bleeds this idea of ‘never giving up’, even though the lyrics resonate being forced to do something you can’t escape. She’s clearly emotionally driven, and like previous buskers before her, (Tash Sultana, Ziggy Alberts) calls upon her own experiences to create catchy and contagious music. Dance Monkey is another teaser into the sound Tones and I is determined to establish as an artist and makes us already wanting more.
The Teskey Brothers – Hold Me
If you were looking for a brand new ‘feel good’ track to listen to, then look no further than The Teskey Brothers latest release, Hold Me. This four-piece Australian band from the outskirts of Melbourne hones an ‘old school Motown sound’ while embracing typical blues and roots characteristics. They have this retro vibe that gives off a warm feeling and when you hear the smooth yet raspy vocals of singer Josh Teskey, you’re left impressed that they’ve managed to captivate such a sound that is often forgotten. Hold Me is the first single from their next album and has been created with such raw and honest timbre and instrumentation that ranges from boots stomping on wooden floorboards, claps keeping the beat, and four vocals weaving together harmonies over a single microphone. It’s almost a reminder that all the ‘bells and whistles’ of today’s primary hits are not important in making a well-constructed single. Their sound hints at artists like Leon Bridges or, at times, Matt Corby, but they’ve ultimately created their own sound and a special relationship with their fans: “We were really aware that we didn’t want to alienate fans,” Liam says. “We love our fans and feel really proud of the first album, but the second album needed to be a step up.” Their second album, Run, Home Slow is set for release on August 2, but for the meantime, enjoy their beautiful new single: