Despite all the chaos this year has brought, one thing we can all rejoice at is the return of London-loving musical duo Real Lies. In perhaps their most electro offering yet, the band show they very much still have ‘it’ in this moody and nostalgic tune. Synths seer and sigh in the background alongside fast drums and glitched out moans while Kev Kharas spits punchy one-liners over the soft and unfurling chaos. Stellar job boys!
As we’re still not over Taylor Swift’s surprise album drop, this week’s Wonderlist has us in our feelings.
Real Lies – “I Wander”
Circe – “Ten Girls”
Dreampop darling Circe is also back with some deliciously dark ear candy. The London-based singer is a master of the synth, pitting heartwrenching lyrics drenched in romance and all things mystic against a foreboding yet transcendent sound. “Ten Girls” is no exception to this rule. If I was the “cool girl” in a coming of age drama co-starring a famous actor’s child, this would be playing as I stormed out of class and everyone looked on in awe. Synths rumble and pan across the electrifying soundscape, pierced only by Circe’s ethereal vocals and enrapturing hums. We’ll be spinning this one for a while I think.
Regulus Red – “Wanna See You Naked”
Queerpop prince Regulus Red is back on our radar this week. With his debut EP fast approaching in September, the emotive singer-songwriter is giving us a taste of what’s to come with sexy new single “Wanna See You Naked”. Squelchy raw drums introduce this rock-fused track, getting our hearts racing and palms sweating. Thrown into the mix are some synths and EDM, creating a chaotically clubby mix for Red to lay down his innermost desires and fantasies.
Nick Wilson – “Enough To Know You”
Nick Wilson’s latest single is the beautiful ballad we didn’t know we absolutely needed for our Sad Girl Summer. Wilson’s captivating voice soars over light acoustics, confessing to the whirlwind of emotions that strangle your heart after a breakup. Timid pianos and delicate violins accompany this raw track in a masterful navigation of shock, sorrow and loss. The track’s accompanying video even spins an imaginative twist on the tale, a one-shot cinematic masterpiece depicting a World War II soldier scrambling to safety from fear of the unknown. Watch at your own peril though, your heartstrings will be pulled clean out of your chest.
DWN2EARTH – ATLANTIS
Feast your ears on the dreamiest album you’ll hear this weekend. Known best for creating acid-drenched R&B with twinges of blissful soul, trap and rhapsodic pop, DWN2EARTH’s ATLANTIS does not disappoint in the slightest. Traversing through Earth’s world is like bathing in a neon-lit sensory deprivation tank. His slow grooves reverberate into the deepest recesses of your conscious, sending the supplies of serotonin and good vibes into overdrive. “Where I come from, it can feel like there are a lot of restrictions,” Earth explains of the hazy 12-track. “ATLANTIS has no confinement, no limitations. It’s a world where you can do what you want.” Whether it be the cool aloofness of “COLD”, or the breezy beauty of “VACATION”, on ATLANTIS there’s something everyone can vibe to.
Phoebe Bridgers – “I Know The End”
If you haven’t seen the fabulously dark video for Bridgers’ latest single, now’s your chance. Taken from her immense sophomore album Punisher, the track shows Bridgers’ effortless ability capture the sweet spot between pain and beauty, sitting at the end of Punisher’s tracklist to grant its soft, slow-burning tension a marvellous and anticipated climax. A sonic end credits of sorts, signalled by electrified guitars and lines like “Either way, we’re not alone / I’ll find a new place to be from.” Layers of dramatic strings, brutal drum beats and tinkling pianos unfurl to expose her final curtain call — with trumpets and screaming, it’s no doubt a fittingly twisted happy ending. And before you ask, yes she’s wearing the skeleton onesie again.
Junodream – “Easy Life”
This one is for the indies. Meet Junodream, the British quintet pioneering moody dream pop. The group, who stole their name in good faith from a Pink Floyd b-side, have been steadily climbing the rungs of the music world since forming in their school days. In latest track “Easy Life”, the boys push shoegaze, sad-indie and psychedelia to the very brink, offering bleak introspections about social exhaustion with reverb aplenty. Blending these styles to create their own signature territory, this dramatic and bittersweet sound is similar to that of early Radiohead or The Verve, a skilful harnessing of the melodic and delectable quality despair brings.
Anna Sofia – Broken Perfection
16-year-old Anna Sofia is the artist living out everyone’s childhood dream. Who wouldn’t want to be a Canadian pop star on the rise? With her debut EP Broken Perfection out today, Sofia serves us a liberated take on modern pop music, chock-full of earworm choruses and catchy hooks. “Don’t Play Pretend” and “Happy For You” take this on wholeheartedly, whereas “Either Way” has us all in our feelings, proving Sofia is anything but a one-trick pony. A little bit bratty, angst practically pours out of these summer-ready bangers, building on an already exceptional discography, we can’t wait to see where she takes things next.