Yo Diablo (Spain)

Yo Diablo is a Spanish wild fingerpicking duo with screaming guitars and infernal chords. Their songs talk about mosquitoes, snakes, cats and other terrible animals, and will make you lose your mind with only a drummer and a guitar player. Their music is a dense mix of bluegrass, surf rock, deep blues and psychedelic rockabilly with flamenco melodies.

They have played in some of the most relevant festivals within Spain and abroad, some including the Monkey Week, Low Festival, BIME, Fuzzville Festival and the Raut Oak Fest in Germany.

SHADE

SHADE are a brand new, exciting alt-rock band hailing from Manchester.

JW Paris

JW Paris is a 90’s grunge Britpop inspired three-piece featuring Gemma Clarke, Danny Collins and Aaron Forde. JW Paris has seen their first three singles ’Sober’, ‘Favourite Thing’ and ‘Royalty’ gain national and international radio play from Jack Saunders on BBC Radio 1, BBC 6 Music, SiriusXM, Absolute Radio and Radio X. They have supported the likes of The Amazons, Skinner Brothers, Yonaka, Avalanche Party and The Blinders to name a few.

JW Paris has been described as sounding like ‘Joy Division’ and ‘where gritty meets swaggery’, by Chris Hawkins (6 Music) and ‘face-melting riff’s by Jack Saunders (Radio 1) 2022 looks to be an interstellar year for the trio with an 11 date UK Tour which started in February supporting Leave the Capital and then hitting the road as main support for The Skinner Brothers.

JW Paris’s new single Electric Candle Light will be released on 25th March 2022. Electric Candle Light is a futuristic-analogue-nostalgia fuelled track all about those nights where you seem to fall into a time-lapse and wish for those past better days. Electric Candle Light will be closely followed by a second single with an album ready and set for release in the Summer of 2022.

JW Paris sound has been developing from birth, with Aaron (Vocals/Bass) and Danny (Vocals/Guitar) knowing each other like brothers, as their Dad’s were in the band Choke throughout the 90’s who were signed to EMI. Aaron and Danny have gone from forming their sound in a 24 hour storage lock-up (then being kicked out) to anywhere now in London that will let them play loud. JW Paris have been taken even more forward with the arrival of Gemma behind the drums (Babyshambles).

Enjoyable Listens

Enjoyable Listens formed in 2018 as a two piece consisting of Luke Duffett and Jimbo Savage, who lived in a derelict pub in Greenwich. They were both pursuing separate paths as songwriters, but in a novel attempt to make beer money (they lived across the road from a Wetherspoons, you see), they’d dress up and busk by the Cutty Sark. Luke wore a skeleton suit and a bowler hat, Jimbo modelled a long orange linen dress and 1970’s hustler daddy sunglasses. They were quite successful in the late summer months. That was really where it all started.

So far, so quirky. Fast forward three years, through five Enjoyable Listen singles, one EP, dozens of fruity live shows, one global pandemic and some Steve Lamacq lovings, these grandoise pop freaks snuck into the opening slot of a night of hectic poet-punk twosomes at Pandemicamonium! at The Dalston Victoria. The world held its breath and clutched its piss-filled milk bottles close to its heart. The world need not have worried: the Enjoyable Listens live set is a lithe, exuberant half hour blast of sharp cheekbones and cheeky melodies from the effervescent vocalist Luke and begrudgingly bouyant basslines from Jimbo. They out-spunked the punkas. By the end of the night, Tuesday September 28th, they had signed to fierce panda.

Not that it feels as if the night ever ends for Enjoyable Listens: barely ten weeks later, ie on December 10th, their lustfully DIY noise makes its debut on the panda with the ‘A Laugh And A Half’ single, a twinklingly arch glamour powerdrive. Between the loose-limbed loucheness of Jarvis Cocker and the pithy nuances of the Divine Comedy lurks a lyric book of gold. As Luke croon so mournfully: “And you, you make me want to sell my possessions / And you, you bought them off me for a very good price.” It’s pop art with a heart, a musical treat with a grand electronical beat.

Luke isn’t just the crooner with the tuner either, being credited with laying down “Acoustic & Electric Guitar, Electric Piano, Drums, Latin Percussion, Synth Pad, Lead & Backing Vox” on ‘A Laugh And A Half’. Or, in his own words…

Recently played by both John Kennedy & Steve Lamacq “’A Laugh And A Half’ is the most candid effort from Enjoyable Listens to date. A hypnotic baroque pop motif that dangles the keys to a 1967 Mercury Cougar in your face with one hand and shackles your leg to a lifetime supply of bitter pills to swallow with the other, this song was written as an advertisement for wearing your idiosyncrasies on your sleeve like a dirty badge of honour. It champions the mystic imagery of dream land and grounds you with the humility of family life in a sweet three minute inimitable package that will leave you hungry for answers you don’t want.”

‘A Laugh And A Half’ is also taken from Enjoyable Listens’ debut album which is being polished off even as we type and will be released in the spring of next year – the duo have just been confirmed for SXSW 2022 after playing SXSW 2021 (online) and being invited by SXSW live in the chatbox.

China Bears

Originally formed in Somerset by twin brothers Ivan & Frazer, the line up was expanded in late 2015 after meeting James and Dean at university in Guildford, UK. China Bears have spent the last few years playing extensively around the UK, with notable support slots with bands such as: Genghar, The Districts, To Kill A King, Geneva, Neon Waltz and The Howl & The Hum. Rosie Peppin re-joined the band in 2022 to play keys, synths and provide additional vocals.

After self-releasing 3 singles China Bears teamed up with Fierce Panda Records for the release of their debut EP ‘I’ve Never Met Anyone Like You’, picking up attention from the likes of BBC 6 Music, BBC Radio 1, BBC Introducing, NPR, Gigwise & Radio X. In 2020 the quartet performed a live session for Steve Lamacq on BBC Radio 6 Music in support of a trio of singles; ‘I’m Not Eating Like I Used To’, ‘Statue Still’ and ‘Jolene’, which were released throughout 2020. The singles were compiled on the band’s recent EP ‘Statue Still’ alongside a stunning piano driven alternative version of the title track.

Selected as an official showcasing artist at SXSW Festival 2022 in Austin, Texas which takes place in March the alt-indie foursome completed a tour of the UK in the build up to the festival, which included a sold out show at The Lexington, London in support of new single ‘Back To How it Was’. The quintet’s new EP ‘All That Distance’ is set for release later this year and will be supported by more tour dates which will see the band taking their stadium sized sing-along anthems around the world.

‘their sound unfurls as a package of unfaltering songwriting with whispers of The National and Dry The River….Brimming with astute and sophisticated songwriting and enhanced by racing riffs and compelling percussion, it toes the line between thought-provoking and euphoric.’ Gigwise

‘the group sounds fully in command of a big, vibrant sound that calls on its influences — just about any anthemic indie-rock band of this century — while still sounding distinct’ NPR

Moon Panda

Coming from the mythical lands of Denmark & California, Moon Panda will gently launch you into the electric currents that govern deep space, with walls of synth wrapped around catchy grooves and guitar hooks that lull you into a soothing sound space of escapism. The duo’s debut EP ‘Pastel Pool’ was self-released in 2019, packed with dreamy guitar pop hits including the singles ‘Rabbit’ and ‘Gun’. In 2020 the band signed to legendary British label Fierce Panda for their second EP ‘Make Well’, the release again earned critical acclaim for it’s luscious, blissed out vibes which float across grooving bass lines with BBC 6 Music’s Lauren Laverne declaring ‘Slow Drive’ her ‘favourite track of the year so far…top of the pile for me.

As the love from BBC Radio 1, BBC 6 Music and radio stations across the globe grew Moon Panda realised they were accidentally indulging in a spot of public service broadcasting: as the streaming figures multiplied, so did the messages of thanks from the lockdowned masses across the globe who were using Moon Panda’s music to transport themselves out of their locked down discomfort zones. ‘Slow Drive’ was excellently featured in episode 5 of CBS Studios’ ‘The Republic Of Sarah’, which was broadcast on North American TV channel The CW in July 2021.

When Moon Panda isn’t lulling you into a dream with their hypnotic, mellow grooves they’re whipping up trippy, psychedelic music videos that coax you into their world and ask you to stay awhile. Having notable shows supporting The Japanese House, Slow Club and Psychedelic Porn Crumpets – they’ve toured throughout the UK and Denmark, as well as being selected as an official showcasing artist at SXSW 2022 in Austin, Texas.

Fronted by California born songwriter/singer/bass player Maddy Myers and Danish guitarist Gustav Moltke, their music brings to mind artists like Tame Impala, Lana Del Rey, Warpaint, Daughter and Beach House.

The bands debut album ‘What On Earth’ is out on 4th March 2022 via Fierce Panda Records, they enjoy documentaries about space, all the animals, their band dog B-MO, being by the sea, giant trees and great television.

“My favourite track (Slow Drive) of the year so far…top of the pile for me”
Lauren Laverne (BBC 6 Music)

Marta Knight (Catalonia)

Marta Knight makes music for dreamers to listen to in their bedrooms. When the rest of the world is asleep, her nocturnal songs glow like neon signs, shine like beacons, and blink like satellites in the distance, giving loners, lovers, and insomniacs alike something to hold. Hers is a universe of late-night confessions–the moments when one is just as likely to fall in love as they are to stare at the ceiling, wondering exactly where their lives are going and where so many possibilities might lead.

Her debut album, Strange Times Forever (due June 3rd via La Castanya) is the sound of those feelings rendered in vivid detail and the arrival of an artist with a view and sound all her own. Obsessed with Britpop and American singer-songwriters like Tracy Chapman, Johnny Cash, and Bob Dylan, Knight began writing songs for guitar and voice in her teens, culminating in her debut EP, Peterloo Heroes, which she released in 2017.

In 2020, she found herself in a more reflective headspace, and soon found a new collection of songs taking shape. “I originally wanted to call the album ‘Patience’. It describes the way I made it. I want to do many, many things, but I also want to do them well,” she says of the process, which saw her songs bloom from arrangements for guitar and voice to something grander. Working with El Guincho collaborator and co-producer Pau Riutort, who has worked with Rosalía, FKA Twigs, and Bad Gyal, among others, as well as multi-instrumentalist Jordi Matas, Marta saw her songs become brighter and less introverted without compromising what makes her songs so unique. The record was also mastered by Heba Kadry (Slowdive, Ryuichi Sakamoto, Deerhunter, Beach House).

She describes “Creations,” her first advance single, as about the people and places that leave marks on us–the parties we don’t go to, the movies that make us rethink our place in the universe, and the songs we cry to on a shitty day. Her looped guitar serves as her anchor: “Can you believe there was a time they weren’t there / And they could’ve been just air?” she asks. “I don’t believe in death / Don’t even believe life has started yet,” she sings.

On the album’s title track, she finds herself struggling with writer’s block and trying to get unstuck in real-time. Like Springsteen on “Dancing in the Dark,” she writes a letter to herself, asks why the songs aren’t coming, and processes the moment for what it is:

Beers in front of my house
‘Cause strange times forever
Dancing on the way home
‘Cause strange times forever

Along the way, she returns to Oasis–one of her favorite bands from childhood. “When you’re really young and you hear something for the first time, you’re very easily impressed. You think about doing so many things. Then as you get older and try to do things, you realize all the hard work you have to do to achieve it. Now, I use that music when I need to feel again what I felt that made me do what I do now.”

Across Strange Times Forever, Marta channels her inspirations into instantly memorable hooks forever in service to her iridescent voice, signaling the arrival of a songwriter and storyteller with a worldview and perspective all her own.

Strange Times Forever will be released June 3, 2022 by La Castanya.

Sofia Lafuente (Spain)

Sofia Lafuente is an exciting new artist from Madrid.

Chico Jorge (Spain)

Chico Jorge is the solo project of Barcelona-born Jordi Bastida, known for being the guitarist of artists and bands such as Carlos Sadness, Els Pets, TRAU, and Ramón Mirabet. He debuted last summer with his first EP, Chico Jorge i, which tells a personal story about fall and rise, plain and modest, which, in the key of indie pop with a taste for noise, has been inspired by stylistic references such as Deerhunter and Wilco. Side A of the EP describes the fall with ‘Las flores que arden,’ and ‘amalgama de miedo y furia.’, which have served as singles; while side B deals focuses on the rise with ‘Pájaros,’ and ‘grieta en sol Mayor.’. Because that’s what life is like for the vast majority of human beings: a vertical zigzagging route, the queen stage of the Tour, running between mountain pass up and mountain pass down; and the human heroic lies not in invincibility, but rather in our infinite ability to pick ourselves up again when we’ve hit rock bottom.

In October he released the single ‘Revolución en 32 versos’, inspired by The Strokes or the first Angel Olsen. A musical formula that allows Jordi to express his message more clearly and accurately, since by mixing courage and humility, Chico Jorge is beginning to accustom us to his way of articulating great reflections on common life, confronting himself in emotional rings from which most of us flee without looking back.

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