Wednesday, 29 August 2018

Irish Playlist #034: HAVVK, Jane Willow, SOULÉ, Fruitz & Dissolve

HAVVK - Glass

Info: It's been a month since the last independent Irish playlist here on REMY, longest gap ever I think, needless to say there have been some great single releases over the past few weeks which have been put together above.

1) HAVVK - 'Glass'

I'm a bit behind the curve in sharing the latest single from HAVVK (previously HAWK), 'Glass', which was released on the 10th of August. The new offering pulls itself back slightly from the 'on a plate' shoe-gaze sounds of their earlier releases and heads deep into more hauntingly atmospheric dreamscapes, this effect brought up many levels immeasurably by the wraith-like vocals of Julie Hough. I can't find a better word than enchanting to describe how the combination of vocal and guitar really make you disappear from reality - it's quite beautiful.

2) Jane Willow - 'Onward Still'

I'm a big fan of Dutch-born and Irish-based solo act Jane Willow ever since the release of her debut single 'On My Mind' last year. Yesterday she released her second single, 'Onward Still' with an accompanying video (below). Willow has a very loyal classical folk modus operandi, unlike her first single, here I feel a strong connection to Joni Mitchell's Court and Spark. It's incredibly easy on the ear and uplifting, and a picturesque place I would happily spend a lot of time in. She plays The Cobblestone in Dublin tomorrow night and releases her debut EP in November.

3) SOULÉ - 'Don't Hold Your Breath'

The Queen of Irish Rn'B SOULÉ returns triumphantly with a groove-snatcher courtesy of 'Don't Hold Your Breath'. There's a glorious swing to the beat and the house / trip-hop sound lends itself to a well balanced old school 90's style with contemporary flourishes, in particular the vocoder parts. Catchy and energetic, SOULÉ also delivers the more mellow and sombre moments of the track's theme perfectly. 

4) Fruitz - 'Knotz'

I dunno if it's just coincidence, I've been listening to a lot of mid to late 90's indie the past month (stay tuned on that front!) and either that is making me pick up on stuff in songs, or there is an undercurrent beginning to swell with Irish bands re-crafting the era for the 21st century. Either way, 'Knotz', the new single from Dublin four-piece Fruitz is a deliciously nostalgic trip for fans of the era. Musically I'm totally drawn to the heavier guitar moments on The Verve's Northern Soul, whilst the vocals and general demeanour of the overall package bears comparisons to The Charlatans and Definitely Maybe. Sometimes I think that era hasn't dated well, but with bands like Fruitz resurrecting the harder rock elements of the genre, my preconceptions are quickly going out the window.

Fruitz - Photo: Max Cody

5) Dissolve - 'Optihkal'

Manchester-based Cork electronic artist Brian Lane shares the first phase of his new project under the moniker of Dissolve with 'Optihkal' via indie label Inner Chapter Records. The blend of humming cello and violin strings with thudding electronic beats and synths create an alien landscape, an overture to a parallel universe that resides in complete darkness yet is somehow giving birth to life. It's a more than competent opening salvo from Lane and pops him straight into the 'watch this space' category.

To listen to REMY's previous Irish Playlist, #033, go here!