To round off 2018 we’ve put together a special edition of On Repeat. You know the drill: five tracks, all recently released, featuring artists we can’t get enough of right now – so almost certainly you’ll find at least one song in this bunch to add to your playlists.
PALACE – “NO OTHER”
The resurfacing of Palace brought a great deal of happiness to us (and many others) when October’s release of ‘Heaven Up There’ opened the floodgates to new material. Second single ‘No Other’ gets even more cosy with a shorter run time and a softer approach, sincerity emanates from both the music and the lyrics capturing a powerful sentiment: “No Other is about being rescued by someone at a terrible time I once went through,” says Leo; “When all felt lost and hope had faded – love prevailed and I found someone incomparable to anyone – during a dark time in my life. It’s hopeful, blissed out and feels like new life.” Palace hit the road for their first consecutive UK gigs since 2017 this coming February, the tour has been selling like hot cakes so best be quick if you would like to catch one of the remaining shows.
ISLAND – “JUST THAT TIME OF THE NIGHT”
After a gigantic twelve months filled with career milestones (headlining their first US tour, releasing their debut album Feels Like Air) ISLAND unveiled their first studio production since Feels Like Air to be, ‘Just That Time of the Night.’ Building on their fine catalogue of swooning indie jams, the track offers a camplight ambience but this isn’t a meagre or relatively delicate tune. In the hands of ISLAND the soaring lines do just that, emotion becomes revelry and a strumming pace turns rapturous. A confident status of where the band is currently and where they are heading, ‘Just That Time of the Night’ maintains our interest and builds the fundamental foundations for this new era of ISLAND. If the song isn’t enough to satisfy, then lucky for you the band will be back on the road again in February for a UK run of gigs.
PAIGE BEA – “AFTER ALL”
A track that recognises the necessity of a great arrangement but doesn’t go the trodden route, the slow-burn quality of Paige Bea’s ‘After All’ is quite simply one of the best uses of compositional expression we’ve heard. A languid lament written entirely in Bea’s bedroom, spotlighting a breathtaking vocal performance and lyrics ruminating on the moments after a breakup. Singularly intense but also intelligently nuanced, the fragrant production mirrors and expands on Bea’s narrative echoing the fluctuating scenery of her lyrics and shifting mood. It’s a glorious listen and a smouldering taste of what’s to come from this exciting artist – the debut EP is scheduled to drop early 2019 plus a host of live shows will follow.
OUTLYA – “BURN (DEMO)”
Probably the most fitting message as we head towards 2019, a song about endings and beginnings. At a crucial turning point of their own the now-independent trio share a glimpse of their new work: a rough-around-the-edges ballad of emotionally candid, soul-baring beauty. Baring in mind this is still a demo – the studio cut will hopefully arrive at a later date – the track addresses complex inner workings of personal turmoil and mental strain set to a clean, rolling piano. Moving gracefully towards a fruitful New Year the band acknowledges the simple fact of their talents, through stripping back all the sheen and pomp of their previous output, OUTLYA’s genuine hand-on-heart lyricistry and aptitude for crafting wholesome melody is laid front and centre. Out of the ashes and reinvigorated, the glow of self-sufficiency suits OUTLYA pretty well, we’d say.
JOHANNA GLAZA – “ISABELLA”
Instantly enthralling and equally adventurous, the work of Johanna Glaza isn’t straightforward but that’s also why it’s so rewarding. The avant-garde folk artist creates texturally interesting, meticulous sound landscapes for her deeply resonant and emotionally-attuned vocals to interplay with and glide over, alongside lyrical content that’s intriguing and progressively exploratory – her music boasts profound allure and sincere depth. The highlighted track is taken from her latest EP, Albion, a four song collection of inherently majestic contrast and intelligent experimentalism. ‘Isabella’ best showcases the EP’s intricate frictions as a tale of opposing parts with a climatic reprise. Concerned by the human life cycle (enduring, aging, death) the song shifts between glacial chamber pop, baroque, haunting balladry, and unhinged electro to comparatively bridge innocence and imagination with instability and psychosis. It’s a fascinating expanse of authenticity and expression, and documentation of why artistic integrity is endlessly inspiring.