Emerging Artists of Early 2015

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Petite Noir: King of Anxiety EP-

Yannik Ilunga is a 24 year old South African musician that started off as a guitarist in a metal band in his mid-teens. Over the years, he has been influenced by many artists and different types of sounds to bring him to what he is producing today. His music takes on a very mature sound; something that comes with years of tinkering and figuring out what kind of sounds he wants to meld together.

He has been on the map since 2012 when he released his debut single “Till We Ghosts,” which is on The King of Anxiety (Mos Def, aka Yasiin Bey, also did a remix of it). He was relatively silent until late last year when he released his breakout song “Chess,” which received critical acclaim around the blogosphere.

His debut EP starts off with the energetic “Come Inside,” which showcases his brilliant baritone voice. It begins with a simple drumbeat and melody with a guitar mimicking the melody in the background. Then it gradually swells, and you get the feeling that this will be a great experience.

“Chess” is one of the most elaborate songs on his EP. It begins with a rhythmic dance between synths, drum machines and guitars, then Ilunga comes in with a beautiful falsetto “I don’t know, but you’re taking me for a fool, boy." This is one of his stronger lyrical songs, about a relationship turned sour, and he’s pleading his lover to remember that they once had something.

As the song concludes, the energy is injected and it turns into organized chaos, then it cuts out.

“Shadows” and “The Fall” make up the rest of the EP, they are some of the more sonically beautifully songs in the collection. The chords are vibrant, and the vocals are pristine. Overall, The King of Anxiety is a great beginning to a promising career. You can look for his debut album later in the year.

 

Natalie Prass: Natalie Prass-

Natalie Prass is a singer/songwriter based out of Nashville, but she is not what you would think would come out of the Music City. She is signed to SpaceBomb records, where she is able to utilize the studio band and orchestra to fill out her retro sound.

Her voice, while beautiful and substantial, is very timid and quiet. The music complements her voice perfectly, and fits the style of the music she is producing.

She opens up her self-titled album with “My Baby Don’t Understand Me," and it is a great introduction. The band sounds great, and her lyricism is uncanny. She poetically weaves her way through a relationship that is falling apart, exclaiming to the audience how her “baby don’t understand me anymore.”

“Bird of Prey” is a groovy 70s funk-infused folk, actually I do not know how to describe it, but it is fantastic. The instrumentation is sweeping, and can take you away to her world for all five minutes. The verses are sung with a sort of swagger that embellishes the music.

“Why Don’t You Believe In Me,” “Christy" and “Never Over You” are some other standout tracks that vividly show her heartbreak and influence from the 70s.

The album closes out with “It Is You," a very Broadway-esque/black and white musical number. It is an uplifting sounding song of hope telling her love interest that nothing really matters unless he is with her.

This is a refreshing album. Not much contemporary music is made like this today, and it is nice to hear sounds of the past being recreated by a talented lyricist and singer.