Featured Artists on Songs of Summer
Who They Are: Wolf Alice hails from England and is comprised of Ellie Rowsell (guitar/vocals), Theo Ellis (bass), Joff Oddie (guitars) and Joel Amey (drums/vocals). After emerging onto the scene last year, Wolf Alice has had an incredible start to 2015 with sold-out tours across the US and UK as well as a tour across Europe with alt-J. Their highly anticipated debut album My Love Is Cool sold out of its limited  vinyl edition on day one. Their sound is exhilarating in its potential to gritty up the pop landscape. At times, Wolf Alice sounds like they’re straight out of the ’90s alternative grunge era with their sedated yet primal vocals, aggressive drums and angst-infused fuzzed out guitar. My Love Is Cool was released on June 23rd, 2015 by RCA Records – Sony Music.
Who They Are: Zella Day (aka Zella Day Kerr) grew up writing songs on her guitar in rural Arizona, influenced by her parents’ collection of singer-songwriter albums. After moving to L.A., she received attention from her YouTube cover of “Seven Nation Army” by The White Stripes in 2012. Her new LP, Kicker, released June 2, 2015 by Hollywood Records, is modern pop with Western accents and lush arrangements. Day’s voice is pop perfection as it flutters in and out of hypnotizing melodies that root themselves into your head. She arms her vocal instrument with lyrics that have visual depth and are fearless in their vulnerability. Zella Day, with her emotive voice and credible songwriting, is the vision of a modern bohemian pop queen.
Who They Are: Vérité is singer-songwriter based out of New York whose delicate yet soaring voice lifts electro beats into another dimension. Her raw vocals and uptempo drum-based instrumentation incites an urge for vocal and physical catharsis. The juxtaposition of bright instrumentation with heavy lyrics in “Wasteland”, the trance-inducing lyrical repetition and pulsing heartbeat of a melody in “Rearrange”, and the layers of sonic complexity of “Colors” mark Vérité’s older tracks some of her most notable. Her second EP, Echo, (released October 20, 2014) hosts glossier production but continues to keep Vérité’s vocals central to the musical orbit.
Who They Are: Ibeyi are a duo of French Cuban twins, Naomi and Lisa-Kainde Diaz, whose father was the Cuban percussionist Angà Diaz. Naomi plays the Cajon and the Batas (both percussion instruments), while Lisa-Kainde plays piano. The twins sing in both English and Yoruba and combine elements of modern pop, hip-hop and electro with traditional Yoruba instrumentation. Ibeyi is pronounced “ee-bey-ee” and translates from Yoruba as “twins”. Ibeyi’s instrumentation is colourful in its variety and unpredictability while their vocals are enticing in their ability to morph from smooth and soulful to the dynamic sparklings of Yoruba chanting. Their self-titled debut album was released on February 16th, 2015 by XL Recordings.
Who They Are: Chet Faker (aka Nick Murphy) is originally from Melbourne but now resides in Brooklyn where he writes, performs and records all of his music. His voice is both polished and raw as it soaks into his deep grooves and then stretches into his upper register. Faker’s music is nothing if not groove-centred. Creating the ultimate chill out vibe, “Gold” is a sexy R&B track that showcases his tone and vocal range. While “1998” has a brighter synth sound, its groove is just as infectious and alluring. With lyrical themes ranging from to pining despair to deep infatuation, Chet Faker is a compelling songwriter whose words are poetic. His debut LP, Built On Glass, was released on April 15, 2015 by Future Classic / Downtown.
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Lyndi Barrett (Style Calling, Editor) and Stephanie Horak (Stories Behind The Songs, Editor)