Hey everyone, welcome to another Top 3. This one’s a little different! I’ve done the usual hard work of trawling through this year’s podcast tracks, all 36 of them, with intense attention along with all the background research in order to draw up a shortlist. That part hasn’t changed. The new bit is the involvement of the team - rather than being purely the opinion of the podcast host (me), it’s a joint effort. The songs coming up are the result of a team vote and represent, in our opinion, the best representations of new music that have come through our doors over the last twelve months.
This year’s honourable mentions begin with Michael Butera’s One Last Round, an insanely catchy and energising dance-pop track. Also, HEAVN’s Fear came close to the Top 3, marking her change of direction from her previous project Carry Lyanne. Finally, an intimacy and some impressive dynamics brought Ewan J Phillips' Blacksun within touching distance of the countdown.
Ready for the countdown?
Genuine Panama - No Good
Fun seems to be the priority with new music these days. Funk has seen a massive resurgence recently, so we’ve selected Genuine Panama’s No Good as a pristine example. Layering a relatable pop vocal onto a funky bounce is a delicious combo, bringing all the quirks of the genre and making it accessible to a wider audience. It’s the perfect gateway drug!
It also helps that these guys are busy and active with content and performances across the midwest. Take a look at their music video to this song to see what I mean. Totally priceless. Brummies - click here for your January blues-buster.
LUCILLE - Heart Of Rome
Resurgence, ironically, is quite a new thing. The resurgence of folk, the recent resurgence of funk, more is sure to come. But what about a resurgence of the Muse genre, because I refuse to give it any other name? What about Quentin Tarantino soundtracks? One band is breathing heroic new life, and although I fear they stand alone in their struggle, they are doing so with flair, creativity and class.
Heart Of Rome is compelling rock, structurally original, texturally rough and addictive, and has won this year’s second place. Another treasure conjured up by London’s music scene. Londoner’s - keep an eye peeled here.
Just Drive - Running
Just Drive drove onto our radar in March with Charmer. We were already impressed with their solid textures, songwriting and general mastery of pop rock. And there they were promising a further three by the end of the year - what do you know, they’ve given us three equally solid releases! Romance Is Over was followed by Wait By My Side, culminating in Running which landed them a first place position from us.
The year’s four releases are best taken as a package, a showcase of their range and calling on a strain of pop rock that’s distinctly South Wales. New release and music video coming in the new year - whether you’re in their neighbourhood or not, keep them on your radar!