ABOVE: YOUNG & SICK. PHOTO COURTESY OF SARAH HESS.
These days, music truly lives online, with an infinite number of websites dedicated to hosting tunes for the laptop-wielding masses. However, the web’s bottomless pit of blogs isn’t the only place to troll for mp3 treasures—some of the newest and most exciting (Internet-friendly) artists can be sought out via Soundcloud, the online stage that allows musicians to promote and distribute their music to fans and friends across the globe. In this weekly column, expert Internet sleuth Alex Chapman goes into the depths of the music-sharing site, in hopes of shedding light on emerging acts, as well as sharing some digital diamonds in the rough.
August 8 is this year’s date for the annual Full Moon Festival on New York’s Governor’s Island, a festival that celebrates indie music’s best and brightest, while also turning the spotlight on some worthy up-and-comers. To help make your trip to the fest all the smoother, we’ve listed three acts below that you don’t wanna miss.
Young & Sick: “Heartache Fetish”
Who: The brainchild of Dutch artist Nick Van Hofwegen, Young & Sick has become infamous for rejecting major label love to release music alone, a decision that’s largely working out. His sound is all at once robotic and soulful, an upbeat cataclysm of electronic sounds and R&B smoothness with a pop edge.
The Song: The second single off Young & Sick’s debut LP, Heartache Fetish, is an expressive ballad, with plenty of gorgeous harmonies and even some sultry falsetto. Earnest and passionate like Hall & Oates or the Doobie Brothers, Young & Sick gives blue-eyed soul a fresh face.
Current Project: Be sure to catch Young & Sick at Full Moon, and get more info on the emerging act via his Facebook page.
Panama Wedding: “Uma”
Who: Created by New York-based musician Peter Kirk, Panama Wedding first got its jumpstart towards success with the internet hit “All of the People,” a shimmering electro-pop anthem on par with gleeful summer songs like Passion Pit’s “Little Secrets.”The Song: Kirk’s sultry cool on “Uma,” an impressive follow-up track, might cause your ears to do a double take upon first listen—he sounds a lot like Sting, and the production combined with Kirk’s offbeat vocal phrasing makes for a The Police-heavy sound. The result? Another happy-go-lucky hit.
Current Project: Catch the emerging act at Full Moon, and stay in the loop via their Facebook page.
Foster The People: “Best Friend” (Wave Racer Remix)
Who: “I like vocoders and arpeggios,” says Sydney’s Wave Racer on his Soundcloud bio, a statement that can certainly be backed up by the producer’s repertoire of dance-pop tracks, all of which are upbeat and musically colorful. Case in point: the huge hit “Streamers,” with playful synths, a big breakdown, and a whimsical sampling of Lil Jon’s famous “WHAT?” tag.
The Song: One of a handful of official remixes Wave Racer has recently tackled, this take on Foster The People’s “Best Friend” is especially enchanting. Pitching up the vocal and adding charming chimes and whistles, the producer lets the track ebb and flow, with calm builds followed by big trap dance breaks.Current Project: Also playing at Full Moon, Wave Racer has plenty more going on—find out what via his Facebook page.