“Closure” by Lyon Tide: initially enticed by the stunning single-artwork, we soon discovered that the music was equally-brilliant. A subdued, vocal-led introduction quickly blossoms into an emotive, uplifting song with melodic string-section flourishes drawing some comparisons to ‘One Day Like This’ by Elbow. We’re particularly fond of the use of dynamics: Lyon Tide utilise volume swells to create anthemic sections, adding emphasis to these by contrasting them with moments of minimalism. We wouldn’t be surprised at all to hear this song used in a film in the near-future as it’s perfect for a memorable, happy-ending style closing section.
“Stay In” by Kipani: beautifully mellow, the power of this song rests in its understated approach which allows the vocal melodies to remain the focal point throughout. The piano melodies sit perfectly in the mix, just below the surface, subtly giving the whole song weight as it softly provides both melody and rhythm. The discreet percussion is well-placed, adding another dimension to the song without distracting from the wonderful vocals or piano. A beautiful song guaranteed to bring calm and tranquillity to every listener: Kipani evidently has a natural ability for writing elegant songs.
“Open Up The Pages” by Mark Houston: a strong contender for our newest favourite song. Mark’s vocals are warmly welcoming; they’re mixed perfectly, working superbly with the different sonic layers of the song. There’s an uplifting quality to the single, with beautiful bursts of bright acoustic guitar adding delightful legato melodies that take the listener by surprise. Varying the pace is a clever trick too, helping to keep the song sounding fresh, even after repeated-listening. Distinctly different sections of chord progressions demonstrate Mark’s songwriting talent for composing more intricate, complex songs that truly envelope the listener. An utterly fantastic song that proves Mark has a promising musical career ahead.