Listening to Stoney‘s new full-length album More Than Animals, what is most impressive is that practically everything was written and performed by just one guy. Of course, that’s not the most uncommon thing in music, but the sheer breadth of styles and sounds found on the album make it a particularly shocking fact. After moving from the U.K. to Austin for “sunshine and change,” Mark Stoney continued to make a name for himself with his band Bobby Jealousy, a collaboration between Stoney, Seth Gibbs, and Sabrina Ellis. But it’s his return to making music on his own that allows him to spread his wings. More Than Animals is at once challenging and impossibly catchy.
Gingerlys have quickly become one of my favorite new bands this year and they haven’t even released a full-length album yet. There’s just something so alluring and magical about their sound that you can’t help but fall in love from the first few notes your hear. The Brooklyn five-piece blends a shoegaze aesthetic with indie pop songwriting and the jangly guitars of the Go-Betweens or The Smiths. Following their first few flawless singles, the new Summer Cramps EP finds Gingerlys even stronger than before. The wash of reverb-drenched guitars and synths mix with Maria Garnica’s dreamy vocals and accentuate her saccharine melodies. But as intoxicating as the sonic quality is, what has always made Gingerlys stand out for me is their songwriting.
A perfect blend of indie-RnB like Solange and Frank Ocean and indie-pop like Sky Ferriera and Charli XCX, New York based Skyler Cocco is carving a special place for herself in the musical landscape. Her recent mixtape, Wildfire, showcases Skyler’s sweet vocals, great songwriting, and amazing production skills. “You’ll Never Let Me Go” is a great RnB-pop tune with a dreamy, sample-driven beat and a catchy chorus. The verses are shared with rapper Mikavillian, the two playing off each other more like a duet than a featured rapper. He balances Cocco’s soulful vocals with his aggressive tone and
From the opening bars of Say What You Mean, Allison Weiss, a young Brookyln transplant, asserts herself as a powerful force with her sweet voice, energetic guitar riffs, and clever and honest lyrics. Bringing together the edge of The Strokes and uniquely perceptive lyrics about young romance that give Tegan and Sara a run for their money, Weiss’s second full-length album stands out amongst other indie-pop/rock records by eschewing the requisite apathy and bath of reverb in favor for killer pop songs in the truest sense of the phrase. The album perfectly encapsulates the ups and downs of what it’s like to be a twenty-something figuring out your place in life and love.