Starting the Year Off With a Bang: 2017’s Most Electrifying Ladies (So Far)
Female artists are infiltrating the new year like nobody’s business. “Check out this other massive song with killer chic vocals” is becoming my go to statement as we’re either reeking of cranky or avoiding the cranky attitudes of January 2017. Taking gulps of music as if I stayed too long after Coachella’s festivities concluded, during every inhale and exhale is where I’m at. Luckily I have quite a few lovely and gritty ladies to thank for supplying those eight ounces we’re told to take, but never do.
Taking a few hops back in the months (even though I was advised not to…), recognizing Satellite Mode’s “Warm Fire Lightning” is essential. The Fevers meet Florence and the Machne’s vibes are apparent, a little dark and definitely different. There are a handful of transitions keeping you on your toes all the while staying steady enough to play the pop melody card. Amongst these catchy pieces, the key to my attachment happened to occur while I was singing along. You may scoff, but let me tell you…. sing along to the chorus and my friend, you will be hooked. Something about singing along to “you give me warm fire, warm fire lightning,” is surprisingly addicting.
Jumping ahead to the approved date of 2017, comes a mix of twang, collaboration, and edgy ballad-like splendor. LUWTEN (who, unfortunately, is not on Spotify) enters January with a pleasantry of tunes. “Go Honey” is delicate and soft with its xylophone simplicity carrying you along the majority of the track until the background vocals whisk you away during the choruses. The bridge may be the part that stole my heart as it takes on another mystical atmosphere replaced with beats for a few moments before the closure. A little repetitive in lyric, but it feels so fantastical that it fits perfectly to imagining yourself dilly-dallying through a green forest settled in a dewy fog, while swirling colors pass you by.
As you reach the edge of LUWTEN’s forest you find yourself in the dusk of the evening surrounded by your closest friends moving in stop motion to Ella Vos’ “Down In Flames.” Though the beats and melody have the essence of familiarity, the separation or rather the specialty, lies in her soft falsetto. Maintaining simplicity is flawless, it allows you to experience the song for what it is without overdoing it so that you lose the foundation. Of course, of course, I’m going to touch upon the background vocals during the final chorus. It’s exactly what the song needed to drift you towards the end and land you at the end of a fun night with those closest to you.
Snakehips’ “Don’t Leave” (featuring Mø) is a blast of electronic ballad with sensual aggressiveness twisting around a plea and apology to save the “perfectly imperfect” relationship. Mo’s unique gritty and pouty vocals align themselves beautifully with the slow bouncing melody. As the story uncoils, the bridge sends a jolt of pleasure as the twenty one pilots’ style bridge slides you to the finale. The result of this hopeful tragedy is a tad familiar, yet the appearance of Mo soaks in the emotion to create something worth noting.
To conclude the spirit of January comes a tune to fill our anthem-y hearts. Here strikes The Wild Reeds and their “Only Songs.” This is where things get a little folky, where melodies warm your soul amidst the demands of lyrics. An acknowledgment of the miseries of growing up and learning of disappointing truths demands the need to grab a friend by the shoulders and belt out the frustration of it all. By the “No, it’s not what you thought that will get you to God,” you’re already standing on the table with a stiff drink in your right and air microphone in your left. The impact of such a relatable and passionate climax consoles your soul and pats your head gently confirming, “You aren’t alone.”
By Charissa Lock