Lovebox ’17 – Friday Picks

Celebrating its 15th anniversary, Lovebox Festival returns to East London’s Victoria Park tomorrow (14-15th July) with an eclectic line-up spanning across the two days. Friday’s headline act is the one and only Frank Ocean, performing one of his only two UK festivals this year. With the success of his debut album Channel Orange, followed by 2016’s Blonde featuring collaborations from the likes of Beyoncé and Kendrick Lamar, Frank Ocean has wildly become one the most celebrated and critically acclaimed acts of this decade. With a whole host of amazing acts set to kick off Day 1 of Lovebox, celebrating the best of British and international musical talent, here are some of my top picks for Friday:

1) Jamie XX (Main Stage: 7.25pm – 8.40pm)

Jamie xx has the task this year of playing right before main stage headliner, Frank Ocean. However, when you have tracks such as ‘I Know There’s Gonna Be Good Times’, it pretty much speaks for itself. With the massive success of his 2015 debut album In Colour giving us transcendent singles such as ‘Loud Places’, ‘See Saw’ and ‘Gosh’, Jamie xx consistently delivers a wide range of textures & styles, firmly positioning himself as a unique & imaginative contributor to the British dance scene. Jamie xx pushes boundaries and offers up a new realm of possibility from that of his main project, The xx. Whatever you do, make sure you reserve your spot for Jamie’s main stage set.

2) Solange (Noisey Stage: 8pm – 9pm)

Over the past few years, Solange couldn’t be mentioned in an article without being referred to as as ‘Beyonce’s Sister’. However, after years of hard work proving herself as an established, forward-thinking and grammy-winning artist, Solange can finally lose the ‘Beyonce’ tag. Her most recent album,  A Seat at the Table, confidently dealt with the complexities of black womanhood. With stunning singles such as ‘Cranes in the Sky’, ‘Mad’ ft Lil Wayne and ‘Don’t Touch My Hair’ ft Sampha, Solange has made a fearless stance with her empowering body of work.  Having recently performed on Glastonbury’s West Holt Stage to rave reviews (one of the few performances that wasn’t allowed to be filmed for the BBC coverage) make sure you don’t miss her Lovebox set.

3) Rex Orange County (Noisey Stage: 2.20pm – 2.50pm)

Rex Orange County (aka Alex O’Conner) first came to my attention last year with his single ‘UNO’, serving up a refreshing slice of charming lo-fi mixed with witty conversational style vocals. When your talents have been recognised by Tyler the Creator, you know you’re onto something pretty special and unique. With the release of his self-produced debut album  ‘bcos u will never b free’, featuring on Tyler’s recent track ‘Boredom’, to his most recent debut album proper, Apricot Princess, ROC’s material offers up a personable outlook on life, effortlessly blending various styles from pop and indie to jazz and hip-hop. Showcasing  a talent far beyond his years, O’Conner’s melodic hooks are infectious and unassuming as heard in tracks such as ‘Best Friend’, ‘Sunflower’ and ‘Sycamore Girls’.

4) Sälen (Main Stage: 2.45pm- 3.15pm)

Self described as ‘Straight-talking, slightly to the left pop music’’, Sälen is made up of Ellie Kamio, Paul Taylor Wade and Simon Milner. The London trio, whose name is inspired by a small Swedish village with 652 inhabitants, serve up some effortlessly cool vibes with a unique edge. From their infectious synth-pop vibes of ‘Diseasey’ and ‘Heartbreak Diet’ to the saccharine-induced tones of ‘So Rude’ and ‘Copper Kiss’, Sälen’s eclectic influences set them apart from their contemporaries serving up a delectable form of ‘explicit pop’. With their glossy productions, breezy melodies and sweet sugary vocals akin to the likes of AlunaGeorge, this is one act that certainly won’t disappoint.

5) Ray BLK (Noisey Stage:4.00pm – 4.30pm)

23-year-old Ray BLK kicked off the year as BBC’s Sound of 2017 winner and has since gone from strength to strength with her straight-talking, down to earth attitude.  With the success of previous tracks ‘My Hood’, ‘Chill Out, ‘2am’ and her most recent offering ‘Doing Me’, Ray perfectly balances her free style vocals and soulful R&B melodies, delivering a refreshing slice of UK R&B. Having recently featured on Gorillaz’s latest album Humanz alongside Zebra Katz and Rag‘n’Bone Man, as well as previous collaborations with Stormzy and Wretch 32,  Ray is currently working on her debut album, which will no doubt represent her core values from her stage name, BLK (Building, Living Knowing)

6) Joe Goddard  (Corona Sunsets Stage: 4.00pm – 5.30pm)

As one half of house-duo 2 Bears, member of electro band Hot Chip and co founder of the Greco-Roman imprint, Producer/DJ Joe Goddard has released over a decade worth of albums and remixes – even earning him a Grammy nomination for his edit of the Chemical Brothers’ ‘Wide Open’. While his many side projects keep him busy, Goddard finally unveiled his highly anticipated first official solo album, Electric Lines. The album skilfully pays homage to the history of dance music and retro electro. His infectious form of house, disco, techno, creativity and left-wing pop music, has given us gems such as ‘Gabriel’, ‘Taking Over’ and more recently ‘Home‘ and ‘Truth Is The Answer’.

With so many incredible acts kicking of Day 1 of Lovebox, it’s impossible to narrow down my top picks. Notable mentions have to go to Sampha, Eats Everything, Bicep, Seth Troxler, Kaytranada & DJ Jazzy Jeff – all of which I’ll definitely be checking out throughout the day. So to get you in the mood for some sun and music this weekend, check out my Lovebox Playlist below. Check back soon for Saturday’s picks!

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March Selections

While February’s music news was dominated with awards show saga’s from the Brits to the Grammys, March has paved the way for some exciting new music releases. Lorde made her highly anticipated comeback with new single ‘Green Light‘, Stormzy showed us a different side to him with the heartfelt ‘Blinded By Your Grace, Pt 2’ Ft MNEK, while Kendrick returned with new single ‘Humble‘ and a cinematic video to match. But before I  get into my top tracks for March, let’s see what else has been going on in the music world… which mainly consists of one very important man. Yes, Ed Sheeran has well and truly dominated the charts, taking 16 positions in the top 20 singles chart. Every single track from his new album ÷ (Divide) made the top 20, making it a record first for any artist to achieve. ‘Shape of You’ still maintains the top spot, closely followed by ‘Galway Girl’, ‘Castle On A Hill’, ‘Perfect’ and ‘New Man’. Not only has Sheeran become the only artist with the most top ten singles from one album, he’s become the fastest selling male solo artist ever and the third fastest selling overall in the first week, only to be beaten by the Queen that is Adele with her album 25. On top of that, Spotify announced that Ed Sheeran now has the highest number of first day streams for an album, raking up 56,727,861 streams.  Not bad, eh? In other album news… yes there are others besides Ed, Lorde announced details of her forthcoming album Melodrama out this Summer, while alt-J unveiled details of their new album Relaxer set to drop in June too.

Another month, another festival! Last month we heard that Beyonce had to pull out from headlining legendary Coachella Festival on doctor’s order (Pregnant with twins). This month it’s been confirmed that Lady Gaga will be her epic replacement. Haven’t smashed her Superbowl performance in February, we can’t think of a more worthy replacement. Although, how she can top jumping from the roof of the stadium is beyond me! Closer to home and going back to Ed for just another minute, Sheeran has finally been announced as the final headliner at this year’s Glastonbury Festival and joins fellow Pyramid Stage headliners Radiohead and Foo Fighters. I feel like many people already guessed this, but a headline slot of this caliber is only fitting for a man who’s breaking records left, right and center. SW4 announced that Solomun, Loco Dice, Sasha and Carl Craig’s Versus Synthesizer Ensemble will be joining the already growing line-up of Sigma, Pendulum, Deadmau5, Duke Dumont, Knife Party and Nicky Romero. While Radio 1’s Big Weekend revealed that Katy Perry will headline the first night in Hull. Other acts announced over the two date event include Little Mix, Kings of Leon and Stormzy.

Red Nose Day just got bigger with the addition of James Corden’s popular Carpool Karaoke feature, with Take That. The boys will be joining The Late Late Show host in LA to raise money for Comic Relief. Back in London, Radio 1’s Scott Mills and Chris Stark aired a 24-hour LOL-a-thon, which saw the hosts entertain the airwaves and raise £275,263 over the 24 hours. Congrats lads!

Now in March, we can look ahead to plenty of new music and festival updates! In the meantime, check out my top tracks below, with over an hour for your listening pleasure.

1) Offaiah – Run

Ok, let’s kick off monthly selections with a bit of a banger shall we? Argentinian house producer Offaiah, rose to new heights last year igniting dance floors with the Summer smash ‘Trouble’, raking up over 20 million streams. Hoping to follow in the same suit with his highly anticipated follow-up single ‘Run’, Offaiah serves up a instantly vibrant sound with some driving house-piano and infectious flute hook. No doubt a top line vocal will be added to the already infectious instrumental soon enough. ‘Run’ is available now via Hits In The Bag and Virgin EMI.

iTunes: Run
Google Play:
Run

2) Jarreau Vandal – Someone That You Love ft Olivia Nelson

Rising Dutch producer Jarreau Vandal, unveiled his new single ‘Someone That You Love’. Known for his unique remixes for the likes of Digital Farm Animals & Dua Lipa, as well as 2013’s Soulection debut ‘Perfect For Me’, his new single ‘Someone That You Know’ serves up a delightful 90’s throwback with soulful, jazzy vibes. The track recently featured on The Magician’s Magic Tape 69 and features the vibrant vocals of 21-year-old Olivia Nelson, who effortlessly sparkles over some funky basslines, soulful chords and infectious beats. Vandal delivers a track with plenty of structure and depth so expect a lot more from him this year.  Having recently completed his sold out European Sound of Tomorrow Tour, ‘Someone That You Love’ is taken from his forthcoming 5-track EP Suburb Superhero, which is set for release April 29th via Hear This Records.

iTunes: Suburb Superhero
Google Play: 
Suburb Superhero
Tour Dates

3) Ben Pearce Feat Elias – Crescent (Running)

Ben Pearce is back with re-working of his single ‘Crescent’ now featuring the stylish vocals of Swedish singer/songwriter Elias. While the original is taken from Ben’s forthcoming EP ‘Ascension’ –  a series of 4 EP’s to be unveiled throughout the year, the original instrumental track is given further layers of depth and creativity with the addition of Elias’ powerful vocals. Mix that with Pearce’s layers of intricate synth melodies, soft basslines and luscious tones throughout to deliver a truly impressive piece of work. ‘Crescent (Running)‘ is available now via Different Recordings while the Ascension EP is available April 17. Upcoming dates for Ben include Lost Village Festival (Aug 24-28)

iTunes: Crescent (Running)
Google Play:
Crescent (Running)
Tour Dates

4) Sweet – Little Dragon

Swedish four-piece group Little Dragon, unveiled their latest single ‘Sweet’ which serves as the follow-up to the previously released ‘High’. ‘Sweet’ serves up more of a trippy-dance track, perfectly framed by  lead singer Yukimi Nagano’s sweet vocals and plenty of futuristic elements shimmering throughout. Taken from their forthcoming fifth album Season High and follow up to 2014’s Nabuma Rubberband, the band worked with producers James Ford and Patrik Berger. Season High is available April 14th via Loma Vista. Upcoming dates for the synth-pop group include Love Saves The Day in Bristol (May 27), Parklife (June 10-11) and Glastonbury (june 21-25)

iTunes: Season High
Google Play:
Season High
Tour Dates

5) Lorde – Liability

With the success of her comeback single ‘Green Light’ released earlier this month, Lorde unveiled yet another new track. ‘Liability’ is the second track to be taken from the forthcoming sophomore album Melodrama and serves up a more subdued, yet beautifully lyrical track. Accompanied by delicate piano, Lorde exhibits a sense of vulnerability in her vocals, all the while remaining thoroughly captivating throughout. Liability serves up a stark contrast to the previously released ‘Green Light’, giving us a taste of the diversity on the album. Melodrama is available June 16th via Universal. Upcoming dates include Radio 1’s Big Weekend in Hull (May 27-28) and Fuji Rock  in Japan (July 28-30)

iTunes: Melodrama
Google Play: 
Melodrama
Tour Dates

6) Joe Goddard – Home ft Daniel Wilson

Hot Chip’s Joe Goddard is gearing up for the release of his debut solo album Electric Lines in April, and with that has unveiled his new single ‘Home’ ft Daniel Wilson. Sampling the retro ‘We’re on Our Way Home’ from 70’s funk band Brainstorm, ‘Home’ serves up an instantly feel good tune paying homage to that iconic hook – the perfect soundtrack for your journey home. With vocals from Michigan based singer Daniel Wilson, ‘Home’ delivers an infectious, disco anthem with plenty of soul. Be sure to check out the video directed by Pete Fowler for a truly psychedelic, disco-party experience. Electric Lines is set for release April 21st via Domino Recordings.  Upcoming dates include Field Day (June 3), Wildlife (June 9-10) and a mini US tour (May 14-15, 18 & 20)

iTunes: Electric Lines
Google Play: 
Electric Lines
Tour Dates

7) TCTS – Do It Like Me (Icy Feet) ft Sage The Gemini & Kelis

Back in January I posted about rising producer TCTS (aka Sam O’Neill) and his infectious single ‘Icy Feet’. Now the Mancunian producer is back with a re-edit and vocal topline for the newly renamed ‘Do It Like Me (Icy Feet)’. TCTS enlists the slick vocals of LA rapper Sage The Gemini and R&B singer Kelis. Their call and response vocals serve up the perfect dynamic to take this already infectious dance-floor filler to the next level. ‘Do It Like Me (Icy Feet)’ is available now via Ministry of Sound. Upcoming dates for TCTS include Creamfields (August 24-27)

iTunes: Do It Like Me (Icy Feet)
Google Play: 
Do It Like Me (Icy Feet)
Tour Dates

8) Mr Jukes – Angels/My Love

Bombay Bicycle Club frontman, Jack Steadman, has taken a hiatus from his indie rock routes and taken up the role of soul & funk producer. Re-branding himself as Mr Jukes, jazz and funk are his main influences throughout his first solo single ‘Angel’s/Your Love’. The single serves up a tale of two sides, with Angel’s setting the tone with sassy horns, echoed vocals and sax riffs, while ‘Your Love’ unleashes a more brassy attitude with its funky vibes and effortlessly soulful vocals from BJ the Chicago Kid. Mr Jukes perfectly expertly recalls the vintage, old school jazz era, all the while delivering something fresh and exciting for his debut single. Mr Jukes debut album God First is set for release July 14 via Island Records.

iTunes: God First
Google Play:
God First

9) Alma – Chasing Highs

21-year-old Alma from Finland kicked off the year featuring on BBC Radio 1’s Future Festival. Her distinct vocal and brightly coloured hair take center stage once again with her latest single ‘Chasing Highs’. The single premiered as Mista Jam’s Hottest Record and serves as the follow up to last years’ ‘Karma’ and ‘Dye My Hair’. With its instantly catchy hook, breezy tropical beats and infectious synths, ‘Chasing Highs’ perfectly captures Alma’s unique pop-stylings. ‘Chasing Highs’ is available now via Island Records. Upcoming dates include Mighty Hoopla (Victoria Park, June 4) and Reading & Leeds Festival (August 25-27).

iTunes: Chasing Highs
Google Play:
Chasing Highs
Tour Dates

10) Gorillaz – Saturnz Barz ft Popcaan

Gorillaz unveiled four new songs from their highly anticipated album Humanz. ‘Saturnz Barz’ ft Popcaan follows the previously released ‘Hallelujah Money’ ft Benjamin Clementine, taken from their forthcoming fifth album Humanz and follow up to 2011’s The Fall. ‘The new track features Jamaican dancehall singer Popcaan, who you might recognise from Jamie xx’s ‘I Know There’s Gonna Be (Good Times)’, and serves up a melancholy track filled with haunting choral vocals, atmospheric production with Popcaan’s effortless flow working in perfect contrast to Albarn’s eerie hook. With a host of high profile guest artists announced for the album, including D.R.A.M, Rag’n’Bone Man, Danny Brown, Little Dragon and Noel Gallagher, Humanz is set for release via Parlophone Records on April 28 Upcoming dates include The Alban Arena (June 2), London’s O2 (Dec 4-5)  and their very own festival called Demon Dayz at Dreamland amusement park in Kent. Be sure to check out the video directed by Jamie Hewlett also available in 360 degrees.

iTunes: Humanz
Google Play:
Humanz
Tour Dates

11) VÉRITÉ – When You’re Gone

New York based singer/songwriter VÉRITÉ unveiled her new single ‘When You’re Gone’, taken from her forthcoming debut album entitled Somewhere in Between. With a string of EP’s under her belt and the success of recent single ‘Phase Me Out’, ‘When You’re Gone’ instantly captivates with VÉRITÉ’s soaring vocals and euphoric melody, all the while delivering that extra edge with its dark undertones and atmospheric production.  The alt-pop singer has enlisted a host of talented producers for the album including Liam Howe ,(Lana Del Rey, FKA Twigs) Tim Anderson, (Solange) Pether Thoma,s (Selena Gomez) James Flannigan and Zack Nicita.  Somewhere in Between is available June 23rd. While no EU dates have been scheduled, upcoming US dates include Lincoln Hall (Aug 28, Chicago) and Great American Music Hall (Sept 5).

iTunes: Somewhere in Between
Google Play: 
Somewhere in Between
Tour Dates 

12) Becky Hill – Rude Love

Becky Hill unveiled her latest single ‘Rude Love’ which premiered as MistaJam’s Hottest Record. Produced by long time collaborator MNEK, ‘Rude Love’ delivers a powerful statement from Hill with fierce vocals and gritty, electro-pop vibes throughout. Rude Love serves as the follow up to previous singles ‘Warm’ and ‘Back To My Love’ further solidifying Hill as a prominent solo artist. Upcoming dates for Becky Hill include London’s Scala, (April 5) Common People, (May 27-28) Reading Festival (August 25-27) and a headline gig and London’s KOKO (Oct 19)

iTunes: Rude Love
Google Play:
Rude Love
Tour Dates

13) alt J – In Cold Blood

alt-J unveiled their latest single ‘In Cold Blood’. The single is the second track to be taken from their forthcoming album Relaxer, having previously released ‘3WW’ earlier in the month. ‘In Cold Blood’ premiered with MistaJam on Radio 1 as his Hottest Record and serves up some sassy horns with reggae rhythms and spiraling synths . While the indie rockers diverge from the typical ‘pop song structure’, they offer up a playful blend of style and sounds with twist and turns at every corner. Produced by Charlie Andrew (Alt-J, Marika Hackman and Sivu,) Relaxer follows 2014’s album This Is All Yours and is set for release June 3rd via Infectious Music Ltd. Preorder the album now to receive ‘In Cold Blood’ as an instant free download. While the indie rock trio are kicking off a North American tour in Columbia, Maryland (July 27), UK dates include Radio 1’s Big Weekend in Hull (May 27-28) and London’s o2 (June 16) and Glastonbury (June 21-15)

iTunes: Relaxer
Google Play: 
Relaxer
Tour Dates

14) Karma Kid x FONO – Allison/Candyland

UK producers Fono and Karma Kid, have joined forces on their new split-single ‘Allison/Candyland’. A-side ‘Allison’ kicks off with Fono’s signature stylish synths, while the B-side ‘Candyland’ serves up some spacey breakdowns interspersed throughout the energy-laden track. Both singles demonstrate the producers diversity and creativeness. Not only do the producers continually push boundaries, they tear them down.  ‘Allison/Candyland’ is available via Disclosure Method White Imprint.

iTunes: Allison/Candyland
Google Play: 
Allison/Candyland

15) Frank Ocean  – Chanel

Frank Ocean shared a new track ‘Chanel’ via his Blonded radio show on Beats 1 Radio. The track serves as the follow up to the recent Calvin Harris & Migos collaboration ’Slide’. Chanel is an important track for Ocean with it being his most dualistic and subversive work to date. Referencing his bisexuality with line’s such as ‘I see both sides like Chanel’, Ocean gradually peels back layers, laying himself bare amidst shuffling piano, muffled beats and subtle production throughout. As understated as Chanel may seem, Ocean’s vocals are commanding throughout this achingly-melodious track. Upcoming dates for Frank Ocean include Sasquatch! in the US (May 26-28), Parklife in Manchester (June 10-11) and Lovebox in London (July 14-15)

iTunes: Chanel
Google Play:
Chanel
Tour Dates

Check out the full playlist below and here’s to another exciting month of music ahead!

 

September Selections

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So many great tracks dropped the past month, so here are some of my ‘September Selections‘.

First up is James Blake ft Chance The Rapper with ‘Life Round Here‘. The London based producer & singer/songwriter, has teamed up with rising Chicago based artist ‘Chance The Rapper‘ for a reworked version of ‘Life Round Here‘, taken from his Mercury Prize nominated album ‘Overgrown‘. The track featured as Zane Lowe’s Hottest record where Blake spoke about the collaboration: ‘I really liked his mix-tape (Acid Rap) and saw him at South by Southwest. I just thought his voice would work really well. I never felt the track was finished, even when it went on the album, I always thought there was space for something else’. Blake has certainly found that missing element and the duo deliver a fresh and exciting outlook with Chances’s raw energy and Blakes melodic and atmospheric vocals. Check back soon for their forthcoming video, set to feature ‘Everything from Somalian horses to pirates and Chevy Impalas‘.

A while back I posted about rising New Zealand songstress Lorde (Aka Ella Yellich-O’Connor) and her infectious track ‘Tennis Court’, from her free ‘Love Club‘ EP. Her latest offerings, taken from her debut LP ‘Pure Heroine’, is another exceptional track titled ‘Team , where the 16 year old presents a very mature sound with her upbeat yet bittersweet melodic vocals, that is captivating audiences worldwide. Having recently performed on ‘Later with Jools Holland‘ Lorde is set to embark upon a sold out Australian tour but will first play ‘Vevo’s 2013 Halloween Party’ in Oval Space, London. Lorde also features on the forthcoming ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire‘ Soundtrack with a cover of Tear For Fears 1985 hit song ‘Everybody Wants To Rule The World‘.

Is it Gangsta (Yes yes yes) is the first single to be taken from South London rapper Giggs‘ forthcoming album ‘When WIll It Stop‘. Produced by Mark Ronson and Tone P, this is the first new material to surface since his 2010 album ‘Let Em Ave It‘ and delivers a strong return to form from the SN1 frontmnan. Be sure to check out the 9 minute short film video, directed by Reg Traviss, that even had it’s own trailer released. You can also catch Giggs perform at Londons ‘Under The Bridge‘ on October 15th, while ‘Is It Gangsta‘ drops October 6th.

LA singer Banks has unveiled her new single ‘The Is What It Feels Like‘, taken from her recent 4 track ‘London’ EP. Produced by Lil Silva and Jamie Woon, the single serves as the follow up to ‘Before I Ever Met You’ from the ‘Fall Over‘ EP and the recent Teed collaboration ‘Warm Water‘. Banks has such a unique sound and delivers haunting vocals amidst deep sultry beats and eerie electronic production. Currently supporting The Weeknd on tour in the US, Banks will also support The Weekend in London’s O2 on November 26th.

Danny Brown returns with a new single ‘Dip‘ taken from his highly anticipated album ‘Old’. Produced by Skywlkr, ‘Dip‘ samples Freak Nasty’s 1996 single ‘Da‘ as well as references to Jay Z and Kanye’s Paris‘ throughout. The MDMA fueled video, shot during his European tour, showcases Browns rapid rap skills with some trippy animations to match. ‘Old‘ is set for release Oct 8th through A-Trak’s Fools Gold Records and features artists such as A$AP Rocky, Purity Ring and Charlie XCX.

Sia’s new single ‘Elastic Heart‘ ft The Weeknd and Diplo, is set to feature on the forthcoming ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire‘ soundtrack, alongside previously announced artists such as Coldplay, Lorde, Of Monsters and Men and Ellie Goulding. The sombre synt-driven track, which featured as Zane Lowe’s Hottest Record, highlights Sia and Abel Tesfaye’s enthralling and haunting vocals with slick production as always from Diplo.

Having delivered one of the summers biggest anthems ‘Jack‘, Breach (aka Ben Westbeech) has unveiled his follow-up single ‘Everything You Never Had‘ featuring the infectious and soulful vocals from Andreya Triana. Sure to be a dance floor filler with it’s classic house vibes and 90’s rave influences, the Bristolian dj and producer is constantly raising him game with each new release. Be sure to check out the Joe Goddard remix, who once again works his magic on delivering a fresh new remix. ‘Everything You Never Had‘ is set for release October 20th.

Back in May, ‘What Love Is Made Of‘ provided us with the first look from Katy B’s highly anticipated sophomore album and follow up to 2011’s ‘On A Mission‘. Katy has since dropped her latest single ‘5AM‘, which serves as a worthy successor with it’s big room house vibes, infectious hooks and Katy’s smooth garage infused pop vocals. Set for release Oct 28th through Rinse and Columbia, expect her second album sometime in 2014.

Blood Runs Wild‘ is the latest release from Brotherly duo Ruen Brothers (Rupert and Henry Stansall). Having already released their retro inspired ‘Aces’ and ‘Walk Like A Man‘ to high praise, ‘Blood Runs Wild‘ follows the same suit with it’s vintage rock n roll vibes, sweeping vocals and upbeat melodies. The duo deliver such a mature and accomplished sound far beyond their years. With big support from Radio 1, Zane Lowe featured the track as his Hottest Record. Be sure to check out Ruen Brothers headline the Q Awards gig on Oct 19th at London’s Jazz Cafe, before supporting Tom Odell on his UK tour. Having signed a major record deal during the summer, ‘Blood Runs Wild‘ is set for release November 4th via Island Records (UK) and Universal/Republic (US).

Coachella: Day 2

coachella 2

Saturday – April 13th

Headliners: Phoenix

With Day 1 of Coachella completed, lets look ahead to my ‘Top Acts’ for Day 2.

Baauer:  3:00pm – 4:00pm | Sahara

American DJ/Producer and Trap sensation Baauer is set to cause havoc with what will no doubt be a mass Harlem Shake in the Sahara Tent . Having recently toured and collaborated with Hip Hop legend Just Blaze on the epic trap banger ‘Higher‘, Baauer is fresh off a mini tour with Hip hop rapper Danny Brown.  Baauer has an impressive track record of remixes including No Doubt, Nero and Prodigy, and the recent AlunaGeorge ‘Attracting Flies‘. Upcoming UK dates include SW4 at Clapham Common and Reading & Leeds Festival, London.

The 2 Bears:  4:15pm – 5:45pm | Yuma

The Two Bears, made up of Joe Goddard (of electronic band Hot Chip) and Raf Rundell (Raf Daddy), are set to hit Coachella with their infectious house music. With 3 EP’s and 1 album under their belt,  previous releases have included ‘Bear Hug‘ and ‘Be Strong‘. Having already received massive support on UK radio, the duo also host their own radio show ‘Follow The Bears‘ on Ministry Of Sound Radio. Upcoming UK dates included SW4 at CLapham Common, London.

Bat for Lashes: 5:10pm – 6:00pm | Mojave

Bat for Lashes, aka English singer songwriter Natasha Khan, has made quite the impression having taken her inspiration from artists such as ‘The Carpenters‘ and ‘Neil Diamond‘, which led to her 2013 Brit nomination for Best British Female. ‘The Haunted Man’ was Laura’s third studio album which brought us the stunningly haunting ‘Laura‘, and ‘All Your Gold‘.

Major Lazer: 6:25pm – 7:15pm | Mojave

Major Lazer (AKA American DJ/Producer Diplo and Walshy Fire) are set to bring their carnival vibes to Coachella. Their forthcoming album, Free The Universe’ has been almost two and a half years in the making, so Coachella serves as the perfect stage to showcase new material.  Having already released ‘Get Free‘ ft. Amber Coffman of Dirty Projectors, ‘Jah No Partial’ ft Flux Pavillion and their latest single ‘Bumaye’ (Watch Out for This) ft. Busy Signal & Flexican, Major Lazer are primed to take over 2013 with their infectious reggae rhythms and dance hall vibes. Expect a few custom duplates and Diplo in an inflatable Zorb! Upcoming UK dates include Sheffield, Oxford, Bristol and London’s Roundhouse and Reading & Leeds.

Julio Bashmore: 7:30pm – 9:00pm | Yuma

DJ & producer Julio Bashmore was responsible for one of the most infectious house tracks of 2012 with ‘Au Seve‘, which he released under his very own label, ‘Broadwalk Records‘. Previous production credits have included Jessie Ware’s ‘110%‘ and the most recent collaboration with Jessie on ‘Imagine It Was Us‘. No doubt we’ll see plenty of ‘Bashmore Bass’ during his Coachella debut.

Saturday has an incredible line up including Knife Party, Biffy Clyro, Two Door, Ben Howard, Franz Ferinand, The xx, Benny Benassi, Grizly Bear, Hot Chip, 2 Chainz, and Action Bronson. Special mention has to go to Radio 1’s DJ and taste maker Zane Lowe, who is set to deliver an energetic genre defying set; Definitely one to check out!

Don’t forget, you can watch all the action LIVE on the dedicated Coachella YouTube Channel. Check back soon for my ‘Top Act’s for Day 3.