Groover Playlist 105 | Man Vs. Machine

People and programming face off in today's roster of international submissions.

Nadine Altounji is a citizen of the world, Blackpearl send their apologies, Black’Fa has a video you can get behind, Charles Danet is pretty dark — and they’re just of the attractive options in today’s submissions from Groover, a platform that connects artists with critics like me for a small fee. You can (and should) follow me on Spotify HERE, check out my Top 150 playlist HERE, or listen to it via the widget at the lower right of every page on this site. If you want to be in an upcoming playlist, go HERE. But first, get acquainted with today’s playlist, which is roughly divided between organic music and edgier electronica fare:


Nadine Altounji | Bint El Balad (ft. Dana El Masri and Nadia Bashalani)

HOME BASE: Canada.
GENRE: World-Pop.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “Montreal singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Nadine Altounji’s musical passions and skills are deeply rooted in the rich soil of her Syrian homeland. As well as being a talented vocalist, Nadine is a consummate musician, playing the piano, guitar, bass and oud. For her latest release, an album titled The Stories that Tie Us to Trees that combines Middle Eastern and South American musical traditions, Nadine reclaims her full name and identity as a Syrian-Quebecois and citizen of the world. Bint El Balad is a luminescent celebration of the evolving identity of women of Middle Eastern descent. Inspired by the 1955 Egyptian film Bint El Balad (Country Girl) and the trope in Egyptian cinema of the country girl who goes to the city and falls into the sinful life of a dancer, Nadine set out to reimagine the Bint El Balad, freeing her from the authoritarian male gaze and offering a more loving reflection from her modern sisters and daughter. Bint El Balad is a story about women, not as objects to be gazed upon but as fully actualized people to be celebrated. In this intimate desert universe, these women of the diaspora sing and dance themselves into the wholeness of their being and the fullness of their identities as women of the world.”

Blackpearl | Sorry

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: World.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Blackpearl is a self-taught pianist and guitarist. He has also trained himself in the techniques of recording, beatmaking and marketing through the Internet. Sorry is the result of the first collaboration between two artists from Réunion. On a track by beatmaker calliemajikbeat, the two singers combine Jamaican English and local Creole over an Afrobeat rhythm.”

Black’Fa | Dèyè Bass

HOME BASE: France.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “Black’Fa is an urban artist from Martinique and Haiti. He has released a new title for the summer holidays. Attracted by dancehall shatta, this atmospheric track is all about fun. Turn on the subwoofers, get your headphones ready and enjoy the vibes.”

Charles Danet | Pretty Little Death

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Orchestral Pop.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Charles Danet is a French composer influenced by ’60s pop and ’70s library music. His songs are the ideal soundtrack to an imaginary movie still to be made. The instruments he uses the most are vintage organs, Mellotrons and Moogs, along with old accoustic and electric guitars. Pretty Little Death is influenced by Ennio Morricone, the orchestral pop of Phil Spector, and the arrangements of Jean Claude Vannier. The video features vintage commercials edited together.”

Silvertwins of Funk | Sunday Funk

HOME BASE: Sweden.
GENRE: Funk.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Silvertwins are the production team of Fredrik (Fronkpac) Jahn and Mattias (The Guitarman) Adolfsson from Sweden. Their sound is all the way funk. They are lost in the search for The One! Sunday Funk is their first single. They plan to release a new single every six weeks and eventually tour the world, meet fellow funkateers and search for The One!”

Toxiq | Idées Noires

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Synth-Pop.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Toxiq are the electro duo of musicians and long-time friends Claire Deligny (the chick from the cheeky pop band Matchboxx) and Yul (a percussive and subtle producer). Their music reflects all the years they have spent dancing, eating, and crying together. But this collaboration was born at a distance — both physical and temporal. After releasing Drogue Dure Drogue Douce, Toxiq now present a blasted version of Bernard Lavilliers’ 1983 hit Idées Noires.”

Poty | Different

HOME BASE: France/Italy.
GENRE: Pop-Rock.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Poty, 21, is an Italian-French artist. He is an author, composer, producer, bassist and pianist. Teatro Toselli, a magical place of Piedmontese culture, hosts Poty for the video of his single Different. At the same time nostalgic and dynamic, the video takes the viewer into Poty‘s imagination, immersing him in a place long inaccessible due to the pandemic. This project is meant to pay homage to all the artists who were unable to express themselves during this time.”

Nedelko | Dyade

HOME BASE: France.
THE TRANSLATED & EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Nedelko is back! Following up Part 1 of his album Urizen, released in December, the young rapper returns to tease Part 2 with Dyade. The song is an intense sketch of the emotions that cross us when everything is finally in its place. The loneliness, the sound of the first flames, the roller coaster, the lightning. It is the encounter with the only soul that shines in the middle of the clay. The horizon is widening, and the message is clear: The whole is worth more than the sum of the two. To be continued …”

De Ghost | Luxe

HOME BASE: Switzerland.
GENRE: Electronica.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:De Ghost is the new electronica project of Swiss producer Sknail. Luxe is the first single from the forthcoming album due in September 2021. De Ghost’s sound is a clever mix of rhythmic glitch sometimes coupled with DnB beats, deep bass and atmospheric pads. His music — with its sober and minimalist aesthetic, charged with an ethereal atmosphere — evokes a near future in which the ultimate luxury will be silence, freshness and purity. Music and visuals are intimately linked and function as a metaphor to orient the listener towards the music, offering tracks for listening, reflection or introspection.”

Avaraj | World So Cold

HOME BASE: United States.
GENRE: Modern Rock.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “My name is Avaraj. I’m a singer, songwriter and rapper from Georgia. I started writing to help process my emotions, and eventually turned many of those writings into songs. I want my music to help people process what they’re going through and grow from it in a healthy way. Most of my music doesn’t fall into one genre because I am influenced by different genres. I want to connect with the everyday average person who occasionally gets overwhelmed by life because that’s who I am — an everyday, average person who creates music to cope with life.”

Florian Brunner | Arrival

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Electronica.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Florian Brunner composes electronic music that explores sounds and melodies. Virtual instruments have unleashed his creativity and he can express his vision like never before. Arrival is a single that was composed like the soundtrack of a movie. Inspired by composers like Hans Zimmer or Junkie XL, he created a universe mixing strange sounds with classical voices and traditional instruments. The result is a unique piece; poetic, intense and energetic. This cinematic music evokes an arrival in a futuristic and mysterious world.”

Jordi Forniés | Quiet Streams

HOME BASE: Singapore.
GENRE: Neo-Classical.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Jordi Forniés is a Spanish musician, composer, and visual artist based in Singapore. Always contemplative and expansive, his compositions draw on neoclassical and ambient electronic music. Forniés composes for piano, strings, and small ensembles, working with studio recordings alongside electronic elements. He has composed for films, including Caroline Fink’s epic documentary about the receding of the largest glacier in Switzerland, Aletsch: Of Ice and Men, and made music for documentaries and video installations of film director and producer Gitta Gsell. He is a member of the Composers Society of Singapore. His new single Quiet Streams was inspired by a beautiful memory.”

Ending Satellites | Des Lignes Blanches

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Neo-Classical.
THE TRANSLATED & EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “Ending Satellites is the stage name behind which hides Damien Dufour, a multi-instrumentalist from the Basque region who has been composing music full of emotion since 2011. The first single from his upcoming album Home, Des Lignes Blanches is a melancholic piano piece with a cinematic ambiance.”

Farmworker | Ancient Prince

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Electronica.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Farmworker is the symbiosis of two sound growers in a unique universe of improvisation on analog machines, synthesizers, modulars and rhythm machines.”

Josh Dooz | Beautiful Ballerina

HOME BASE: United States.
GENRE: Folk-Hop.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “I’m just a kid from New York that makes dope music! You ever wake up and just miss your mom? This song is about my momma! I’m a momma’s boy and I’ll scream it proudly! I released it on her birthday which was July 6. She’s the most beautiful ballerina in the whole world!! This song is for all the mommas out there!”

Andy Lowe | The Automaton’s Daughter

HOME BASE: United Kingdom.
GENRE: Electronica.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Andy Lowe is a multi-instrumentalist, composer and music producer from the verdant town of Shrewsbury. After spending years honing his musical instincts through jazz bands, solo acoustic gigs and directing a gospel choir, Andy released his first EP Forest Edge in 2019. His new release Zhuay Club takes a playful approach to softsynth composition, infusing a vivid palatte of sounds and harmonies with complex rhythmic energy. Andy is also a prolific songwriter, influenced by greats like Paul Simon. This track is unique: It’s a combination of hard, gritty electronic beats and melodic folk violin.”

BlueBeni | Drop It

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Electronica.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “From Metz, BlueBeni is an electronic music artist.”

Jonas | Safe

HOME BASE: Denmark.
GENRE: R&B / Soul.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “After more than 20 years in the music business, Jonas has an impressive CV. He has been crowned the godfather of Scandinavian soul by international media, and worked with John Legend, Omar, Joss Stone and Bilal. When the world closed down in 2020, he set up a studio in his home in Copenhagen, which led to the EP 4ward Fast To Future in May 2020. He is now readying the EP All Systems Go, with fove songs that have been in the vault for some time, written with high-profile artists from the U.K. and U.S. Safe was co-written with UK neo-soul sensation Ego Ella May and Swedish multi-instrumentalist and super-producer Daniel Fridell.”

Gabriela T.E.E. | Julia

HOME BASE: Brazil.
GENRE: Electronica.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “My music is made with soul, love, affection and dedication, I hope you like it!”

Ray Mason Abe | Bye Bye West

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Electronica.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “I’m a French music producer. Groundworks is my first EP! I have worked very hard to obtained funky chord progressions, groovy bass lines, dreamy textures, and complex rhythm patterns. With musical inspirations coming from classical music, jazz, Latin music, but also disco, funk, techno, and all genres of house music, I believe I have managed to create a project that resembles me and my musical personality. Bye Bye West is the most complete and powerful track of the album, which is conceived as a 31-minute set to be experienced from the first track to the last.”

Zkari | Alt Blir Bla

HOME BASE: Iceland.
GENRE: Electronica.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Zkari is a electronic project by Georg Óskar. Alt Blir Bla has techno elements and a big sound for a dark club track. It is fluent and moving throughout.”

Alix Tucou | See You, See You

HOME BASE: United States
GENRE: Jazz.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “Bass trombonist Alix Tucou has played and interpreted the music of Frank Zappa with LPJZ featuring Ike Willis, participated in the creation of the electronic music collective United Fools, done symphonic orchestra sessions in Bordeaux and Bayonne, and composed for theatre and multiple electronic projects. He has been as a street performance artist, both with metal brass band Pastors of Muppets and the unreal and fantastic street ballet Ulik et le S.N.O.B / Glisssssssssendo. He had the great luck to play all over Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia and America. He settled in New York in 2016 and continues to develop his musicianship and experiences with all that the Big Apple has to offer to a full-time musician — from subway performances to the most prestigious clubs and concert halls, from hot jazz of the ’20s and ’30s to cutting-edge contemporary.”


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