We are delighted to bring you today the exclusive premiere of Naz and Ella‘s new single, ‘Freedom’, a day ahead of its release.
The song is inspired by the experience of Rahaf Mohammed, a young Saudi Arabian woman who fled an abusive family and oppressive regime with the aim of making it to Australia. After being stopped in Thailand en route and almost deported back to Saudi, where she likely faced being incarcerated or even murdered, she was eventually granted asylum in Canada following a wealth of support on social media.
Inspired by Rahaf’s bravery, Naz & Ella wanted to capture the feelings of desperation and hope. The song is based around a dark fingerstyle riff combined with emotive vocals and lush harmonies.
Inspired by traditional folk, the duo love to tell stories in their music and capture the feelings and emotions of the protagonist, whether fictional or real. They often tackle difficult subjects neglected in music, such as Brexit, gun control in the US, homelessness and the freedom to love.
This year Naz & Ella are focusing on writing songs for their second EP and booking gigs for the summer. Previous places they’ve performed at include the Southbank Centre, Amersham Arms and at L Fest.
LOUD WOMEN is delighted to premiere today ‘Careful Girl’, out today from Californian-in-Liverpool Olivia Gold. A dreamy indie-pop anthem with echoes of east-cost sunshine, and a relatable message for the sisterhood. In her own words:
“Careful Girl” reflects the hopeful and upbeat nature of my transition into adulthood, whilst approaching, with trepidation, the subject of being a woman in a society that doesn’t allow for too much growth. The anthem of a woman in a careful world.
Olivia Gold is a third-generation singer-songwriter: she’s the daughter of acclaimed songwriter Andrew Gold (“Thank You for Being a Friend,” “Lonely Boy”) and the granddaughter of Academy Award-winning composer Ernest Gold and singer Marni Nixon, the “Ghost Voice of Hollywood” (which doesn’t mean she sang in a spooky way … she sang the female lead songs on The King and I, West Side Story and My Fair Lady – I know right, what a boss nan!).
LOUD WOMEN is delighted to bring you today the premiere of Brighton superkids Clt Drp’s new single, ‘Worth It’ – out today on Small Pond Recordings.
We spoke to Annie (vocals) and Scott (guitar) – to get the scoop.
So, what’s ‘Worth It’ all about?
Annie: The song has a lot of different themes, I think mainly it’s about learning when to speak up for yourself and also learning when to let things just be. Unfortunately I end up in limbo a lot of the time when making decisions. There’s a lot of pent up emotions in this song, and it was very cathartic to record.
How did the song come about?
Scott: The main intro riff was something I came up with by ramping up the repeats on a DD7 delay pedal, getting it to self oscillate then putting through a slicer! It’s well fun and definitely takes our sound more into the electro world.
Daph (drummer) absolutely nailed it with the approach on drums, she started playing some crazy stuttery kick and hi-hat beat that slipped in and around the pattern of the slicer, resulting in the whole thing feeling more intense. Where the verses were spikey and jolty it just felt natural to break into a big phat driving chorus.
Same with Annie too, she always has a unique way of finding a hook or melody that works well with one of the parts I’ve come up with.
This track we did with Joe Caple at Small Pond Studios! Joe had some mad ideas by keeping the drum mics set up for when we recorded guitar and vocal. It especially worked well for the vocals, kinda had this weird up close but far away feel. Basically if it sounded odd, it was in.
We came to the conclusion that it was best to treat the guitar like a synth. Most of the signal is just DI going through some big ol’ preamps. We rarely used close mics on the guitar cab.
Tell us about the Brighton scene right now.
Friends of ours Libralibra just seem to be getting better and better every time we see them. If you like hard, wonky pop.. check ’em out!
What’s the 2020 plan for Clt Drp?
We got a UK Tour coming up in April and album launch on June 4th at Green Door Store (Brighton). We should have some exciting international dates to announce soon too.
It’s a big fat day for music today, and yet another LOUD WOMEN premiere for you now – from the wonderfully-named bigfatbig and their single ‘So Bored’. This lo-fi empower-pop banger gets it radio debut today on BBC Music Introducing in the North East, and we suspect we’ll be hearing lots more from this band this year.
We caught up with front-woman Katie and guitarist Robyn to find out more.
Tell us about the new single!
‘So Bored’ follows the narrative of a relationship gone stale, and plays with the idea of complacency and becoming too comfortable. It actually stemmed originally from a one-sided friendship in which we felt we were putting in way more than we were getting back from. The frustrations and anger that can arise from those types of situations can be pretty detrimental to a relationship if they aren’t manifested in a healthy way, and songwriting has always been used as a cathartic process for us. I feel like dealing with the situation after having written this song allowed us to do so with a much clearer perspective, and almost close that chapter of our lives.
We opened our debut live show back in November with So Bored and it’s really seemed to resonate with audiences ever since. I think because it’s so short and punchy, it must be pretty easy to get on board with – and an easy sing-along chorus never hurts. We’re always thinking about what’s next (literally, constantly) so wanted to strike whilst the iron was hot, so to speak. We’re very lucky in that our session drummer, Joe, is also our producer, so knows the songs inside out. We’re also very lucky in that he’s a wicked producer, and our best mate. All 3 of us lean far more towards the creative and performance side, and find the production process a bit daunting, but he makes it dead easy. We were very aware that So Bored is way pop-punkier than our other songs so really wanted to capitalise on that, particularly in the vocals and guitar tone department. We won’t lie and say it’s anything else than what it is, which is a release of pent-up frustration, and I think that’s been captured perfectly.
How’s the NE scene right now? Any new NE bands we should check out?
My goodness, the North East music scene is THRIVING right now. I think it’s a really exciting place to be, probably because Sam Fender has put us back on the map by pretty much taking over the world. We’re really, really lucky to be mates with loads of these exciting musicians, which is mint when you respect what they do so much. I think it’s specifically a great time to be a woman (never thought I’d say that) in our scene, people seem to be finally taking notice. Some of our favourites are:
Martha Hill, Mt. Misery, Faye Fantarrow, Ghost Signals, Kay Greyson, Fever Days, Club Paradise, Me Lost Me, Elizabeth Liddle, Deep.Sleep, St. Buryan, Cortney Dixon, Many Moons, Tall Shaves… could go on foreeeever.
What’s the 2020 plan for bigfatbig?
We are three very busy ladies this year. Somehow, we’ve blagged slots for This is Tomorrow, Stockton Calling, Hit the North and Heelapalooza festivals, with some other shows dotted all in between (check our socials for the deets!). We definitely want to put out another two tunes before November too. We’re really, really lucky to have been heavily back by BBC Music Introducing in the North East this year and are one of their official 2020 tips – which is a total dream – so hopefully we’ll be working with those guys a lot too. We’re working on booking some shows around the country really soon, so if you see us playing near you, come say hi and get noisy with us.
We really want to keep the ball rolling for as long as possible, so this won’t be the last you hear from us this year.
We are delighted to bring you today the premiere of ‘Bruised Fruit’ – the new single from NI Music Award winners Sister Ghost!
The single will be launched this evening at an exclusive, limited-capacity in-store show in Strange Victory Records in Belfast.
We caught up with the band for a quick chat…
What’s ‘Bruised Fruit’ all about then?
The first draft of this song was very personal, and all about my first encounter with being a victim of the ‘blurred lines’ around consent as a teenager. It later morphed into a wider concept of feeling bruised in toxic relationships, whether that be romantic or platonic. I wanted the metaphor of a bruised fruit, like an apple that’s been dropped and hit the floor and it leaves that mark nobody likes, to represent how it felt to be used by someone; the mark is left on you and it’s up to you to see the mark as a lesson to not be bruised again or the bruise shows your resilience to come through a toxic experience.
Tell us about the recording of the song
So the music for this final version of the song was co-written with my awesome producer Cahir (of NewPagans and one of my fav bands from NI as a teen – FightingWithWire!) and it was so great to work with him on that. I record my demos that I send Cahir, in my attic in my flat in Belfast, which my Da and I converted into a sweet little space – it’s my favourite place to create everything from collages to tarot readings on the full moon. I record all my songs as demos on my laptop using my Focusrite interface, LogicPro X and my beloved Telecaster guitar (bought in 2006 with money I saved up from my first job at 15), my bass and a crappy old SM58 microphone for the vocals. So once I finished the demo for Bruised Fruit I sent it to Cahir and he loved it and wanted to try some ideas with it. We then re-recorded an updated demo, sent it to my band and then recorded it fully in a practice space in an old mill in Belfast. It works well having him as a producer because I have a big respect for him and his back catalog and he totally trusts my vision, gives me space and gets what I’m going for. Plus, because both of us are straight-talking Derry folk, we can be very frank with each other and nobody gets annoyed haha!
How’s the NI scene right now?
I recently posted online about just how much our scene here has changed since I was in the only all-female band in NI between 2011-2013:
“Remember when there was only one all female band in NI or like 2 women playing loud music here? Glad that’s over.”
Because it’s true now that there are so many more female-identified artists playing loud music here; many of which came through or met at Girls Rock School NI! It goes to show that feminist communities do help to empower, diversify and change music scenes for the better. Now it will no longer be a marker of difference / an ‘oddity’ to be a ‘loud woman’ or be in an all-female band here, it’ll just be the norm. That was my dream goal whenever I set up GRSNI in 2016 anyways and I am proud to see that it’s starting to take shape!
What’s next for Sister Ghost?
We just got finished touring Ireland with PetrolGirls which was amazing! They were so lovely and so badass. We’ll be playing some shows in the north of England including Manchester and Liverpool, at the end of April / start of May and I’m so excited for that because I’ve never played there with any of my bands before! This summer we’ll hit up some festivals and in the Autumn we hope to play some shows around London. I’d like to have another single in the summer and again in the autumn, with plans to finish and release the album “Attics” in 2021!
Well LOUD WOMEN also hopes to be seeing them in London in the Autumn … [strokes imaginary beard teasingly…]
Excited to bring you today the premiere of Nadeah & Beki‘s electro-pop single ‘Kombucha’ – taken from their debut EP ‘Dream Bitches’ out 6 March.
Nadeah & Beki (Aussie born Indian/Serb Nadeah Miranda and Anglo-Syrian Beki Mari) conjure up tongue-in-cheek 80s post-punk, electro pop and hip-hop in the rap-inflected video for ‘Kombucha’ (for which Beki directed).
We asked the duo, what’s the message behind ‘Nadeah & Beki’?
“Joyful, uncensored, creative expression devoid of sentimentality and intellectualism. Nadeah&Beki are about making music that that celebrates spontaneity, frivolity and irreverence – modern minimalist punk inspired by contemporary obsessions such as cleaning inboxes, veganism, health kicks, insect infestations, sex, money, hairlessness and disappearing into one’s own mind.”
And what do they hope to do with the project?
“Have a shit ton of fun and meet plenty of other like-minded, equally irreverent, playful piss-takers to collaborate with.”
LOUD WOMEN is delighted to bring you the premiere of Newcastle alt-rockers Pave the Jungle‘s new single, ‘Jelly’.
Pave the Jungle is led by songwriter Rachael Whittle, who formed the band after attending an all-female artist mentorship program coordinated by Generator. The scheme saw her collaborating with Nadine Shah and James Brown (of Pulled Apart by Horses). Rachael says of the experience:
“Collaborating with musicians of that calibre, without any pressure looming over me, started the entire process which has led to Pave The Jungle.
“For too long, I was rooted entirely in live performance. In that setting, it’s easy to skip thinking into things too deeply – in favour of just making it faster or louder! That goes for the structuring of songs as much as it does for exploring sensitive lyrical themes.
“Whatever the songs were at the time I scraped them off stage and into the studio, that’s how they remained – forever. Now, the intention is to deliberate more. Not just to view the studio as a place for exploring more daring ideas, but to make sure there’s real meaning and value attached to the end-result.”