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What can’t Tom Misch do? The 19-year-old guitarist, singer, composer, and producer showcases his all-around talent in his new song, which he challenged himself to create in only four hours. “4 hour song challenge”, a vibrant and ambient song, opens with his signature melodic guitar chords, playing off a deep bass line and simple drums. He tops it off with a short lyrical verse. His sultry, gentle voice invites us into a dreamy, wanderlust. Up here in Canada, winter’s hit us already, and this short but absolutely gorgeous piece brings summer afternoons and sunlight flowing back into my room. Take a second and check out this and his other great songs.

- Amanda

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Featured this week on Artist Spotlight is Olivia McCarthy, better known as JOY. JOY is a very young and very talented musician from Brisbane, Australia.

JOY’s style combines powerful synths and beats, interwoven with her extremely peaceful and calming vocals that really manage to make the listener feel at peace. Her music is some of the most unique and powerful stuff we here at alaya have heard in a while, and we just can’t seem to stop listening.

We selected some of our favorite tracks from JOY for you to listen to, and we also had the opportunity to ask her some questions, so be sure to check out both down below.


Hey Olivia, how are you?

Good, thanks!

When did you first show interest in creating music?

Ummm, I’ve been playing piano since I’ve been like two or three. So I’ve always kind of done music. But I guess I’ve started producing in the last five or six months.

Do you have any standout influences?

I don’t really listen to too much electronic music. But probably growing up, I listened to like Fleetwood Mac and The Eagles. Yeah that type of stuff. Oh, Bon Iver as well.

Are there any specific artists you would like to work with?

Probably the artists I just listed. Even though they’re in different genres. Yeah, probably them.

What is your opinion of the music scene in your area?

Well in Brisbane there are a lot of great bands. Overall really good.

What is something that goes unnoticed in your life?

I guess being a professional snowboarder. Yeah that’s about it.

What’s your favorite animal?

Dog.

Any reason?

I just like dogs.

What’s your favorite plant?

Ummmmmm. Cactus.

Any specific type of cactus?

All of ‘em.

Mind giving some advice on life in general?

Have fun. Ah, and do things you don’t want to do.

What is your biggest weakness?

Food. Yup. Haha.

What’s in store for 2015?

Hmm. A lot of traveling and a lot of shows. If everything goes to plan, I want to go and perform some shows overseas. Like Europe, Japan, US, ect. Other than that I’ll be working on my EP, but you never know what can come up.

Check out more from JOY. on her Soundcloud and Facebook!

Interview by Simon

Written by Sam

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The artist collective and record label SYZYGY recently released the up and comer Alexander Lewis’ fresh new experimental track titled “IMY.” Since hitting the internet just one day ago, the song has garnered praise from soundcloud listeners everywhere with commending comments such as “EPIC TUNE!” “~ sexy ~” and “doaaaaappp.” So you know this one’s fire. But in all seriousness Lewis’ production on this track is killer. Bouncy synths, entrancing vocal samples, and a on-point percussion will all find your ears as soon as your press that play button, so I’d go for it if I were you.

- Griffin

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up

The indie-rock band known as Ultimate Painting recently released their self titled album. This album is extremely reminiscent of a variety of classic rock styles from the past few decades. This album was immediately put on repeat once it was received at alaya., and it seems like it can really fit to any mood or atmosphere. Some more info on the group can be found on their tumblr:

Ultimate Painting is a band from earth. People, songs, records, live shows. We have an album out this autumn/fall on Trouble In Mind Records. UP are Jack Cooper and James Hoare alongside Neil Robinson and AJ Cozzi in the live band.

Make sure to pick up the album here, now lets get to the review!

Ultimate Painting

This track is perfect opening to the album, featuring intricately picked guitar lines, softly repetitive percussion, and gentle lyrics that meld perfectly with the dancing guitar riffs. After hearing this track I knew that this album would be perfect for accompanying a long walk or drive, or really any other activity. I can already tell that this group has been highly influenced by classic rock groups such as The Rolling Stones, Paul Simon, and The Velvet Underground.

Can’t you see

With a much more melancholy opening, this track demonstrates the diverse sound of the group. With lyrics and loose guitar strumming that is slightly reminiscent of early grunge groups such as Nirvana, this track confirms my suspicion that Ultimate Painting has been highly influenced by music of the past. They still are able to add a unique lightness to the sound of this track, balancing out the more dreary grunge-influenced sound.

Talking central park blues

This is one of the standout tracks on the album in my personal opinion. The fast passed guitar riffs and unique vocal patterns really make for a unique sound. The nasally lyrics and vocals in this song are reminiscent of The Rolling Stones. I am also reminded of some of Foxygen’s music when listening to this track.

Riverside

Another one of the slower and darker songs on the album. The dreary vocals and dreary guitar lines are accompanied by a lo-fi synth that somehow is able to capture the sound of apathy perfectly. The dancing bass line can go unnoticed in this track but is able to slightly distract the listener from the overall gloomy feeling that this song is able to portray so well.

Ten Street

This is definitely one of the more upbeat and energetic songs on the album. The complicated guitar picking and quick repetitive percussion patterns create the perfect atmosphere for the vocals to explore. Featuring a distorted break and guitar solo around halfway through, this is definitely one of the more aggressive tracks on the release.

Rolling in the Deep End

The lyric, “instant gratification” explains this track well. Rolling in the Deep End develops very smoothly. A clean bass tone backs subtle guitar picking and a spot on vocal melody. Overall it’s a very well written, classic sounding song.. It’s reminiscent of 60’s rock pop enough to make you nostalgic for the days of The Doors, but still keeps that new feeling in tact with its final chords.

Three Piers

Three Piers slows things down again, making for another enjoyable change of pace. The low-end rhythmic guitar chords slide into one another effortlessly. It feels like Nirvana met the Dirty Projectors while still capturing something uniquely new as well. It walks a inspired line between hopeful melancholy. The jamming rhythmic outro is one of the most vibrant parts of the whole album. A good band can bring out the value in simplicity. Ultimate Painting does just that.

Jane

Hot damn. This track takes you on a trip. “Jane” plays like an epic post-apocalyptic love story through desert dunes. A mixture of satisfying lead guitar riffs and meandering bass lines make this one of my favorites. The bass and drum rhythms give Jane that pumping sound you love to hear behind some acoustic strumming.

She’s A Bomb

Another favorite, this track’s organ and lead vocals are album highlights for me. The dulcet chorus of She’s A Bomb is hauntingly beautiful with its dark savory harmonies. A soothing, distant poem transitions out of this track in an incredible, interesting way. Experimental blending of instruments and samples are able warp into a pop gem. Call and response vocals are accented with some killer guitar riffs.

Winter in Your Heart

A beautiful closing track, Winter in Your Heart’s swaying guitars and rolling snares wrap you up. This track is on steady repeat out the road, its sweet melodies fill up the lonesome western landscape with ease. It’s one of those rare songs that’s melancholy and uplifting at the same time I can’t think of a better way to cap such a classic feeling album. A prefect goodbye to Ultimate Painting, Winter in Your Heart consoles the listener as the album comes to an end.

Make sure to check out more from ultimate painting on their website.

 

Written by Henry Schlenker, Matthew Ross, and Nathan Florsheim

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If you haven’t heard of the producer known as Cavalier, you’re certainly missing out. The 16-year-old beat maker has been absolutely killing the game in recent months. His most recent release “Greed” is a brilliant track. Showing off his flawless production, the young producer has sampled Kanye West, taken the introduction from the track “Clique”, and turned it into pure gold. At only a day old, and already amassing over ten thousand plays, the track is sure to blow up in the next few weeks. Cavalier has put the track up on Bandcamp on a ‘name your price’ system, so be sure to support if you can, or grab the free download.

- Jamie

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flamigosis

Flamingosis is young beat-smith hailing from New Jersey who has caught our eye with his diverse rage of sample-based music. He has recently teamed with Yung Bae to add to that collection with “Groovin’”, a disco track sure to have you doing just that. With its textured bass licks and melodic piano, this track builds nicely with a funky disco feel. By the time the vocal sample arrives, you’ll feel like you’re strutting down the street on a warm summers day. With support already coming from Soulection, Flamingosis is heading for a come-up. Give this jam a listen; you won’t be disappointed. Groovin’, indeed.

- Calvin

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Yung Bae: Facebook  Twitter

besh

The quickly rising producer known as Beshken just released his remix Liz’s hit track “Don’t Say” featuring Tyga. This track opens up to a beautiful arrangement of synths, spaced out guitar chords and interesting percussions riffs. Although starting off with an overall relaxing vibe, this track quickly builds into a highly energetic piece featuring poppy synth riffs and a house influenced rhythm. Lately Beshken seems to have been making all the right moves. Each track of his seems to spread around the web incredibly quickly and Mad Decent even showed this remix some love. We are gonna be sure to keep our eyes on Beshken in the coming months, he really seems to be going places!

<3

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Moses Gunn Collective

Moses Gunn Collective is brand spanking new band reinventing the psychedelic washed out feelings of earlier generations. While they only have two singles and a handful of Soundcloud followers right now, I would not be at all surprised to see these numbers multiply in the very near future. Their new single, ‘Mary’ perfectly blends soulful sing-along type music, faded vocals and strong guitar hooks. It’s diverse enough to listen to as fun background music or up loud in earbuds. Look out for this band in the future. They have a really good start and a ton of potential for more.

-Arielle

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Jeffrey Melvin, also known as Melvv, has brought back the vibe with another flawlessly smooth production, “Glide”.  Layers of bouncy synths accentuated by claps and a driving beat give way to cheerful, hook-heavy breakdowns.  Atmospheric rain sounds place the listener in a sonic environment that calls to mind mist and sunshine, and the track breathes with a peaceful yet unrestrained energy.  Melvv’s last track brought his impressive work to the attention of several well-known music blogs, and “Glide” certainly seems like the next step in what will hopefully be a fruitful musical evolution for this young producer.

- Arielle

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Gunns

Surf rock group GUNNS is on the way up. The Spinning Top Records group has just released a lo-fi gem, “The Fool”. With its vintage synths, shiny guitar, and groovy bass lines, and striking vocals, the song sounds a bit like Youth Lagoon, but not in a derivative way. All this is bathed in perfect tremolo and chorus effects. The song takes its time, flowing leisurely, eventually dropping into a ridiculously catchy chorus. Check it out below.

-Drew

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